Forrest sent me this without a comment.
What do you think??
Forrest sent me this without a comment.
What do you think??
I love emails like this one from Diane. Makes me wish I could go back to the starting place and experience all of the things I might have done, but didn’t.
I have a technicolor picture of me running through the brambles with Diane.
It is comforting that the treasures chest thread has brought so many of us together in a kindred way. I feel like I know that girl who played with hobos. f
My grandfather was a train engineer. He used to do a big train whistle out of town so my grandmother could hear to let him know he was on the way, and she’d tell me to take off running. I would run like the dickens through the bramble, and meet his train on the edge of Lewistown, Mt., and he would stop it to a complete halt, then let me on, and I got to drive the train all the way through Lewistown, Mt., then I would hop off, with the train building steam and run back to grandma’s house. Never fell once. I remember the train would slow down slow, then come to a complete halt like how I think warm waters halt.
One of my favorite things to do is go in to town and have lunch with the “young hobos” who hop the trains out of Colorado Springs. My Sunday hobo church. They grab food from people coming out of the cafes and eat it up like morsels form heaven. Took me only a day to adjust to their routine. They are brilliant poets, just like Forrest. A few are banjo players, and they are peaceful, but not for the meek. They are totally free to ride the rails to the next adventure, and I live vicariously through them, as I also love the rails.
I’m new to the chase, and am having fun studying my stacks of maps, and the poem, and I giggle a lot when I wonder- “What would Bubba do?”
Forrest has stated many times: “Start at the beginning so figure out WWWH.” Or simply, “Start at where warm waters halt.” Followed by “WWWH is the hardest part of the poem to figure out.” Yes, Forrest…we understand. Any searcher who has placed their feet on the ground traipsing from their parked car to what they think might be a good solve for where their warm waters halt , understands. I doubt if any of us know for sure if they are one of the searchers who knowingly, or unknowingly, was within 200 feet of his treasure. I’m in that boat…and I feel like I’m sinking fast.
Like many of you wiling away the days until the snow melts, re-reading TTOTC for the hundredth time, and trying to sleep while Fenn’s poem loops through your head, I wondered if there is an easier way to find a warm water spring that is not indicated as “warm” on a map. One of the conundrums I’ve noticed since the Little Girl from India appeared on MW is that since she can solve the first two clues and WWWH is probably one of the first two clues, then doesn’t that mean “it” (the warm waters) has to be identified on her map? Here is a picture of a section of the map and spring just upstream from the Red River Fish Hatchery near Questa, New Mexico. This is my story…to prove my point, maybe.
I am a map person. I have always loved road maps. When we, my family, traveled by car over 50 years ago (as interstates were still being built), I was the kid in the back seat holding the road map, squished in the middle between a brother and sister who honestly didn’t care about maps, or where we were going. They were idiots, I thought at the time.
How can a person not care where they are going and not be anxious with anticipation of what is just around the next bend? I always kept an eye on where we were to make sure my dad didn’t miss a turn…he never did…he was born with a “compass in his nose”, so to speak, and I think, luckily, I inherited the same gene. Now my entire wall is covered in large National Forest maps, and I couldn’t wait to head north to one of them, where the springs are marked by small circles, no names attached.
Saturday, Feb 4th started off just as the weatherman predicted…sunny, blue, cloudless skies with temperatures to reach the low 60’s in Albuquerque, unseasonably warm for this time of year. Molly and I hit the road…it was time to put my theory to test. I thought it might be easiest to find a warm water spring in the winter when the creek banks are snow covered. If a spring had warm water, the snow should be melted around it, right, making it easier to spot? While researching fishing spots in New Mexico, I had read that the lower portion of the Red River is popular in the winter-time because the springs above the fish hatchery helped keep the water warmer there than in other fishing places. So by deduction, I assumed that at least one of the two springs I circled on the map had warm water.
The ride up through Santa Fe, Espanola, and Taos was uneventful. It was the weekend and, despite the beautiful day, there was little traffic. I had been to the Red River Fish Hatchery 4 years ago. I smiled as I remembered my first honest to goodness boots-on-the ground search…. I was such a rookie back then. I thought I had nailed Fenn’s location and the poem would be pretty easy to follow to the loot! (I hope you all are smiling as you read this.) Boy, was I ever wrong!
Today’s search was different…I wasn’t in a quest to find Fenn’s trove but to find the little circle on my map marking a spring. I was searching for where the warm waters halt…
I parked at the far end of the hatchery, hoping no one would notice the empty truck sitting there unattended, with no one visibly walking amongst the various tanks of fish. Molly strolled freely while I snapped a few photos. Then I grabbed her leash and steered her to the path along the privacy fence, containing the off-limit properties to folks like me. We moved rapidly along the path of footprints in the snow, quiet, stealth-like, hoping no one would notice us.
The end of the path led to this property, a private residence surrounded by more fence. It looked like a lovely vacation home, or week-end retreat. A sign said “Beware of dog”. I laughed, and whistled…I wanted to see the dog. None showed up.
The narrow path now opened up into an old road. It was still partly snow covered, and where the snow had melted, the slick mud made the walking messy. But, when you are a Fenn treasure hunter, the condition of the trail does not matter. I dismissed the thought of Molly’s muddy feet and my disgustingly muddy hiking boots inside the clean truck later. We were on a mission…I couldn’t let it matter.
Within 10 mins or so we came upon a footbridge crossing the river. The snow looked quite deep on the other bank where most of its days were spent in quiet shade. There didn’t appear to be a path upstream on that side…we’d check it out on the way back.
In another 5 minutes or so I could see a spot of tiny green leaves peeking through the brush along the river. I knew it had to be the warm spring.
We carefully made our way down the short embankment to the green vegetation growing in the water there. The water trickling from the mouth of the spring was tepid, not nearly as warm as I had anticipated. But it was warmer than the river water…does this count? I didn’t know.
I poked around in the spring’s brush while Molly poked around the edge of the river. I was sort of disappointed but felt I proved a point, sort of. The snow had already mostly melted on the sunny side of the river, but the green vegetation growing in the tepid water did help identify the “warm” spring before I got to it, and I didn’t really need to touch the water to know it was “warm”. But mostly this supports my theory that the place where the warm waters halt can be marked on Little Indy’s map, but still not be identified as such. I mean, yes, you know it’s a spring, but there are a gazillion springs in the Rocky Mountains north of Santa Fe, so you have to solve the poem to identify where the right one lies; hence Forrest saying, “WWWH is the hardest part of the poem to figure out.” Capiche?
After a few more photos of the spring, we headed back to check out the footbridge before hitting the parking lot. Along the way, I noticed a few things I wanted to mention to someone…(please don’t mention this to other searchers, insert smiley face here.)
Look at this next picture. Notice how the sunny side of the river is desert-like with its rocky, sagebrush covered terrain, but the shady side has more trees and is more mountain- like. Is this why Forrest sometimes says “walk out into the desert…” and other times says ”in the mountains…”? This place looked like both.
And although I don’t think this particular section of the canyon is where Fenn’s treasure chest is hidden, I think it is “like” the place where it “could” be hidden. The spring was maybe, at the most, a half mile from the parking lot at the hatchery. Look at the path…easy, not dangerous. Take your kids and let them play in the water. No wild animals to eat them, you, or your dog. This is CNF land…so not private property as long as you don’t jump that fence. No one pointing a gun in your face because you are trespassing on their land. The road to the hatchery is open all year long since fishermen fish the river year round. (Remember, Fenn originally thought he was going to die where he hid the chest. Would he limit it to a seasonal place…one where the roads were closed due to snow for 4 months a year?) And, it’s not a busy place crawling with people, but there might be an occasional passer-by, especially if it was summer.
If any readers are freaking out now because I gave away their solve, relax. This particular stretch of canyon was written about and searched to death 4 or 5 years ago. I didn’t discover it … some earlier searchers used the tailing ponds and Pope Lake as their solutions. I prefer using an actual warm spring as my warm water. But, IMO, this is not the right one.
By the time we reached the truck, it was after 1:00 but still enough daylight to drive into the town of Red River and continue our exploration of the river itself. As I approached the Moly Mine on Rt38, I stared at the movement ahead… Holy smokes, after dozens of times driving through this area, I was finally going to see the mountain sheep. I parked along my side of the highway, turned off the engine, and watched, and took photos, and watched some more. I was in awe… Molly was not. After a quick glance, she curled up in the passenger seat and took a nap.
I hated leaving the sheep but had an agenda I wanted to finish. So on we went…into the town of Red River, a sleepy little old western ski town, a dot on the northern stretch of the Enchanted Circle.
I made our usual stop at the City Park, a dog-friendly place with dog-friendly accessories, namely poop bags and a trash can to put them in. Molly wandered aimlessly whereever her nose took her, dragging her leash behind her with nose on the ground on the scent of those noisy squirrels. Molly LOVES squirrels…coming here is a treat…we do not have squirrels at home. I used this time to call Michelle and see if she’d look on the Red River city webcam to
see if she could see us. She saw the truck and we discovered there is about a 20 second delay. Why does any of this matter? It doesn’t…but with Michelle directing me to point to align my arm in a direct path to the web camera, I found where it is located. On a pole above the Town Hall building. See the arrows pointing to it in the second picture below. (Slurbs, that black arrow is for you, my dear friend…I want all color-blind searchers to see what I see!)
We continued east on Main Street at the far end of town, going straight where the main road Hwy 38 bore off to the left. Even though this stretch followed the Red River, there was soon so much snow, I knew we would not be hiking to find any more warm water springs.
We did continue to the end of Rt 578, and I stopped to take an occasional picture or 12. I was amazed at the snow depth where the plows made snow banks along the pavement that were 8 feet high. It was a beautiful valley, even more so this day with the snow-covered terrain.
On the way back through Red River, we stopped at the Dairy Bar for a bite to eat. Then mosied on home the 3 hours or so it takes to make the drive.
If you’d like to see more pictures of our day, click on this link:
If you looked at the pictures, you can see the snow is really deep when you approach the end of Rt 578. This is where so many good trailheads begin, trails we used to backpack up to Lost Lake, Horseshoe Lake, Middle Fork Lake, Wheeler Peak the long way many years ago, trails that take fishermen to their special places. Might there be warm water springs along any of these trails or forks of the Red? I don’t know…there aren’t any tiny circles on my map. Will I hike these trails, walk along these streams, search for Fenn’s treasure here? Probably. Will I wait until May when the snow has melted from the last shady spot on these trails? Hardly! I will pack my snow shoes the next trip!
Cynthia and Molly…
Thank you Karen,
I will try to answer the questions for your students. I received about 30 emails and was a little overwhelmed. That’s why I didn’t respond to more than I did. My answers follow the student’s questions and are in bold type.
I can see by the first question that your students probably are not asking what they want answered. I will answer the questions as presented and not judge them. I will also leave your students with a poem. It is not a reflection on anyone, or the questions, but something for them to think about.
Today as I went up the stair, I met a man who wasn’t there. He wasn’t there again today, oh how I wish he’d go away.
Can you describe the first and last time you visited your secret fishing spot?
Yes, I went in my car both times and the sun was shining.
Also you said gold. In the canyon we are guessing the sunset make the rock look like gold is this significant to the place where you hid the treasure.
I am sure the rock would think so.
Does the 4 line in each stanza have a significance to when you hid the treasure.
Would you please give us a list of all your friends/superiors in the Vietnam war?
There are several hundred. Would you like the names alphabetical?
Could you also tell was time of year you hid the treasure?
Yes, it was summer.
We have a guess about where the treasure is hidden, and we were wondering if you could give us some feedback on it.
Yes, I think I could.
We believe that the treasure is hidden near agua fria peak, New Mexico.
I think that is very interesting.
Our group also thinks if it is not hidden there, then it might be hidden some where near Cimarron canyon.
The canyon is very long so if you go searching there please be prepared.
Our final guess is that the treasure may be along road 156 in Wyoming. Thank you for taking time out of your day to help us in our class!
You cannot solve the problem by starting in the middle of the poem. You should start with the first clue and then solve the other eight in order.
What is your favorite thing about the place where you hid the treasure?
It is in a place that is dear to me.
When was the first time you went to the place where you hid the treasure?
I don’t want to answer that question. It is more of a clue than I want to give.
What is your favorite outside activity?
When was the last time you went to the place with the treasure was hidden?
A few years ago.
Did you name the poem The Thrill of the Chase?
No. I forgot to name it.
Were you close to your father?
I think I was closer in my memory of him than in practice.
Does Bighorn Canyon,WY ring any bells in your past?
Or does Black Canyon,CO ring any bells?
What do you mean by “ringing bells”
What is the emphasis of “where warm waters halt”?
I don’t understand the question.
What does “warm” mean to you?
It means being comfortable.
Where did you mostly go during your lifetime?
Europe, Asia, South America, and the United States.
When did you find this spot to bury the treasure like year?
I have not said that I buried it, and I don’t want to reveal when I discovered the spot. It is too much of a clue.
Does a blaze mean the treasure?
Not in my dictionary.
Why did you hide the treasure where you hid it?
I love the way you worded that question. I think you are going to be a science fiction writer. The answer is in my book, TTOTC.
What inspired your passion for art?
I have no passion for art. It was only a business to me.
Who was your biggest influence growing up?
My father and my football coach.
Why did you choose the specific riches in the treasure?
Because I needed them to put in the treasure chest.
Have you ever revisited the place you hid it?
How did the Vietnam War affect you?
It made me more forgiving, more considerate, and more aware that we need to leave other people alone.
What time of year did you hid the treasure?
Is there is specific reason that halt and walk are the only words that do not follow the rhyme scheme?
Yes, I was limited by my ability.
What is your favorite place to be? or river?
In my home in Santa Fe.
Where was your favorite place? Why?
Why don’t you ask me how deep is a hole? I cannot single out one to be my favorite.
Why did you marry?
Because I was able to find a woman who was much better than me, and then spent 63 years hoping she wouldn’t find out.
What is “too far to walk” to you?
It is the name of a book I wrote.
Who were your partners in the Air Force?
I had no partners sir.
When you wrote the poem, were you thinking about fishing
No, I was thinking about the poem.
What was your favorite Hike/Trail Yellowstone.?
Trails are not favorites of mine. I always hiked off trails. Why go where everyone else had gone. The rangers didn’t like that, but I did and I was the one doing it. Do you see my logic?
Did it lead to the top of a waterfall?
Some did but most didn’t.
Where did you catch the Fish that you still have a memory.
If so, why do you remember that memory?
Because a 900 pound bear also wanted it. Guess who won?
What type of fish did you like fishing for?
Trout, bass, perch and catfish.
What Is Blaze?
Anything that stands out.
How hard was it to write the poem and not give the location away?
It was not hard at all. I just had to stay focused.
In the poem, Thrill of The Chase when you talk about “Not far, but too far to walk” and “Take it in the canyon down,” is it referring to a waterfall.
You guys seem to be hung up on waterfalls. Don’t try to change my poem to fit your ideas.
We were also wondering if you could tell us anything about “The home of the Brown.
“Do you “check” on the treasure every once in awhile to see if it is still in tact.
Do you mean as opposed to being torn apart? I feel sure it is still intact.
And does anyone know for sure where it is, for example, your wife, or closest friend?
No one knows where it is but me.
We are looking into places in New Mexico and we are curious if we are in the right direction.
Go back to the poem and start with the first clue.
When was the last time you have been to where the treasure is hidden?
A few years ago.
Jenny Kile is a self proclaimed puzzle enthusiast and has a wonderful blog called Mysterious Writings where folks write about the mysteries of the universe and Jenny poses questions to people with answers. Some of her blog is devoted to various puzzles and quests and treasure hunts. One section is devoted to The Thrill of the Chase and a subsection is called Questions With Fenn. Here, Forrest answers questions posed by her readers. Wonderful questions…sometimes mystifying answers.
Her blog is here: Questions With Fenn
This is a place we can discuss his “mysterious” answers.
Hello Mr. Fenn!
My name’s Kenda. Had a strange thing happen the other day –involves you oddly enough
I watched Destination Unknown “Finding Fenn’s Treasure” on 1/13, Friday evening
I’m a paranormal researcher, I record ghost voices… been doing it on a regular basis for 10 years now.
Saturday morning -5 am EST, (3 am your time) I did a recording session. A voice that sounds an awful lot like you is speaking on it. It’s not unusual for sleeping people to show up on recording, happens pretty regularly…no rhyme or reason to it actually.
Here’s what “sleeping you” said, “IT’S A GREAT DISAPPOINTMENT TO ME THAT MY OWN FAMILY HAVEN’T FOUND IT.”
“TAOS… IT WOULD BE BALD WITHOUT THIS” “DON’T YOU KIDS READ?”
Now, I don’t speak at all during the “answer” parts of the recording, only when asking questions.
Vocally, I’m 99.999% sure it’s you; got the accent, cadence, everything!
Just thought you might find it interesting –I definitely do
I did a video of it if you’d like to hear it — (incidentally, I was asking about the existence of Bigfoot at the time –“You” suggested I STOP asking about it considering “THEY COULD BE FROM THE PRIMATE FAMILY” )
Here’s the link to the video…
FORREST FENN (Pure EVP) Sleeping Forrest Messages
I am a professional poker player living in Las Vegas… im 44 years old and I came to Vegas when I was 19 to pursue a career in playing Blackjack… (not such a good idea btw) and have been here ever since. I received your book for Christmas (never heard about your story) and I will be trading in gambling on cards for gambling in the wilderness. Should be fun.
I recently purchased 10 books and have decided I need 10 partners and figured the best way to find 10 people I can trust* was to send it off to 10 inmates serving life sentences… figured they have the time and won’t be looking themselves😀😀.
I chose 9 men and 1 woman. I’m thinking my best shot is the Unibomer Ted Kaczynski.. as he is a pretty brilliant guy and also lived in Montana for a number of years… I have 1 question, Has anyone ever told you they were doing this also?
Hope this finds you well,
Sandy B and the Golden Retrievers had an Enchanted trip while hunting for Indulgence. We have written this article for your entertainment. Mr. Fenn says: read the blogs for entertainment. We aren’t sharing our solves. Sorry. We are just sharing our fun trip with you. We hope you find our story entertaining. And we hope it encourages you to get out, hike, and search (in Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado) next spring.
We rendezvoused at a trailhead at the Embudo Canyon. We hiked down into the canyon and crossed the Treacherous River to Treasure Island (it’s not an island at all, it’s just the other side of the river – but Golden R likes to call it Treasure Island). We traveled thru the Magical Forest, moved a few rocks, reorganized some more rocks, and repositioned a few more rocks.
One rock, standing up like a gravestone, caught our eye.
Sandy B and Golden R couldn’t lift the rock out of the stone crevasse which held it. Sandy B, who has an attention span of a fruit fly, left to explore around the ridge. Since Golden R couldn’t lift the stone; Golden R tried to crank the stone sideways, like a lever. Golden R was shocked to feel the rock move easily like a lever . . . and four more rocks, which were holding the lever-rock in place, all moved with a crunching noise. It was a very “Indiana Jones moment”. Golden R expected a stone entrance to a secret tunnel to appear. But there was no secret tunnel and no treasure chest.
We walked in and out of the river . . . up and down the river. When we felt we had disturbed enough rocks, we went looking for the “Heartbeat of Mother Earth”. With our ears pressed to approximately thirty or forty different rocks, we listened good, for the heartbeat. Golden R’s ear was turning numb from holding the ear against the cold, wet rocks (did we tell you it was cold and it was raining?); we never heard the Heartbeat (Sancho, we needed you.) Sandy B heard a unique hum in that area, so we know we were in the correct spot.
Another “Indiana Jones moment” came, as we arrived at our car to find a note, enclosed in a plastic bag, on our windshield, from a treasure hunter. The note suggested we meet for Happy Hour – Oh Yes!
Sandy B and Golden R had a wonderful evening with a very handsome treasure hunter. We probably shouldn’t disclose our guest’s real name, but we like to call him “Snakecharmer”. We tried to get information out of our guest . . . we tried to buy drinks for Snakecharmer, hoping to learn valuable information . . . but he was a rock. We obtained no information about his solve. We had a very fun evening talking treasure.
The next day, we took a drive thru a very muddy canyon; and we had to scrape the mud off our tires twice, because we were sliding on the mud. Sandy B is an amazing driver; she drove us thru mud that had tire ruts or grooves in the road twelve inches deep. Sandy drove us out of there in 4WD LOW. Golden R was a good luck charm for Sandy B. Sandy B has had eight flat tires this year – on this trip Sandy B didn’t get a flat tire!
We hiked a trail which promised warm waters halting, canyon down, and an X.
We found eyes, a drawing nigh, and a listen good. We stood in one spot which has a pi to the West,
Not pineapple pi
And a finger to our east.
and a pure white blaze to our North. But no treasure chest.
The rocks along the trail were so fun to climb over and climb through – it was like a playground. But Golden R couldn’t stay and play on those rocks, because Sandy B has the attention span of a mosquito.
We then entered the strange part of our journey. This was a time where Sandy B found a broken hiking pole which displayed the word: stop (obviously “halt”).
At this point, we were E.C. Watersing it. (Before we sent this article to Dal, we received permission from E. C. Waters to turn his name into a verb meaning: ‘find a clue in everything you see’).
We found a concrete trough.
As we looked behind us, we saw a big water tower up high. Why didn’t we see that as we hiked by it?
That was a beautiful, fun trail. We found hot springs and saw foot prints from elk, badger and coyote (or fox). But no treasure chest.
The next day we weren’t allowed to drive into the Vallas Caldera National Preserve, because it was hunting season; and WE WERE hunting! So we pulled out our maps, and Sandy B discovered the BEST solve yet. We packed part of our sandwich . . .
“Did we have a flashlight?”, you might ask. Sandy B carried two or three flashlights at all times; and a rock hammer/pick axe/lever for moving rocks and scraping tires. Golden R carried two flashlights, two different packs of matches, and two different packs of waterproof matches, and everything we needed to build a shelter if we got lost. If we got lost, and had to spend the night in the mountains, our shelter would have been seen from the space shuttle.
On this hike we found a tiny, tiny water fall (it’s so tiny you can’t even see it in this picture below).
Something tells me we should go this way.
We saw recent bear scratches on a tree.
We found treasures old and new; and we did it tired.
If Sandy B had been driving that truck, it never would have gotten stuck. Sandy B can drive anywhere.
On this hike we had home of Brown; canyon down; WWWH; listen good; and X marks the spot. So we moved some rocks, reorganized some more rocks, and repositioned a few more rocks.
No treasure chest.
We had a very fun trip; and we saw some amazing sites. And we are getting closer and closer to the treasure chest.
Golden Retrievers and Sandy B-
I’m sharing my first attempt at finding a solution that would lead me to the chest to show how imagination is important but also to show how even after being stuck on this for many months I did allow myself to reconsider other possibilities and options. I realize that some will laugh, some may pick it apart, and some may see things that will make them scratch their heads. I was convinced that this solution was feasible for many months but came to the conclusion after several failed attempts by myself and another searcher that this just was not the spot that is special to Forrest. At the time it all seemed to make perfect sense to me. Looking back on this and with what I now know, I scratch my own head wondering what the heck was I thinking. I hope you enjoy and if not please be kind.
The first stanza talks about hinting of riches new and old. When I did research on West Yellowstone which f likes to share stories about, I realized that some parts of the town are old and some to the south are fairly new. The first stanza told me that West Yellowstone was the area that I needed to search. F has said that most of the places the clues refer to were around when he was a kid. That means that some came after so I attributed the new development to some clues.
Begin at Firehole Ave.. When you are stopped at the red light, there is another light for pedestrians with a hand facing out to signal them to halt. In River Bathing is Best f said that the boiling geyser waters met with the cool waters in the Firehole River. To me boiling waters meeting cool waters gives you warm waters. If you are coming in to West Yellowstone from Highway 191 driving south, you will run right into Firehole Ave. and this light.
Take it in the canyon down to me hints at going south down Canyon St. from where it joins Firehole Ave. You will just continue south from that intersection on Canyon St. Forrest mentions Canyon St. in Totem Café Caper story. I’ve also seen other posts from the past that suggest there was no way Forrest was going to down and back up a real canyon twice to hide the treasure. Number one it would be a little dangerous for a man at that age and would not be fun to traverse with a load. You have to pretend you’re in a Canyon when on the street but you really are taking it in a canyon down which is south.
Not far, but too far to walk to me simply meant I was driving. Most if not all searchers would arrive at the first clue in a vehicle so continuing to drive instead of walk to me was an obvious choice. I also wouldn’t want to walk through town carrying a chest filled with treasure.
Put in below the home of Brown. To me this is the keyword. Forrest capitalized Brown and most searchers don’t even give that much thought as it being the keyword. I think this can be tricky as he knows people would tend to think of people named Brown, and then animals it might refer to, and on down the line. To me it was Totem Café where the brown gravy assaulted his sense of smell. I think Forrest enjoys having some fun and using imagination. The put in below part came a little later for me. When I looked up Totem Café back in February, a map came up. It was a map of West Yellowstone. That is when I realized that it was on Canyon St. and then noticed Firehole Ave. and started wondering if this could be the map that he has talked about. Sure seemed that a number of things were connecting.
No place for the meek. In my solve this was the Grizzly & Wolf Discover Center. At some point in the past I remembered a comment from a searcher on Dal’s blog that said they thought they remembered Forrest saying bear were close by. I’ve never come across Forrest saying that, but if that is the case this would be a pretty close place to my search area to have bear and also be not in a dangerous area since they are contained. Also there are wolves at the center. Just south of the center is Gallatin National Forest, so if you use some imagination to pretend that you have to be brave when searching that area because of the bears and wolves that are close by it could work. There used to be an exhibit that traveled the country that is now permanently displayed at this center. On the center’s website the article about acquiring this exhibit in 2002 says home of the world class exhibit BEARS: Imagination and Reality. I thought that was interesting since Forrest has said that imagination is needed to solve the poem and has also said imagination is more important than knowlege. Another thought that I had for no place for the meek was that you would not want to go down Yellowstone Ave. in accordance with Joseph Meek.
The end is ever drawing nigh. Canyon St. dead ends shortly after the center.
There’ll be no paddle up your creek. I never really made a strong connection with this part of the poem unless the meaning was, there is no paddle because there is no creek. Could also mean you have to pretend you will be entering a creek where the canyon ends and no paddle will be needed.
Just heavy loads and water high. This one took me a bit to figure out. For the longest time I thought it was just added for filler. Then I studied the map some more and realized that one of the streets is Electric St. so that could mean heavy loads. Two other streets are Old Faithful and Geyser so I thought that could possibly be for the water high. The problem with that is they are a few blocks over and not on this path. The old water tower is also on south Electric St. and at one time I thought that could be the water high. Here is what I think Forrest meant by heavy loads and water high. At the end of Canyon St. sits the Worldmark resort. I came to the conclusion that the world part refers to heavy loads as in carrying the weight of the world on your shoulders. For the water high I thought mark could refer to a high water mark. Again I used some imagination and I’m sure many would dismiss my thinking. You can park in the parking lot at Worldmark and go into Gallatin Forest through a break in the fence that the resort made to push winter snow off the property.
When the canyon dead ends I put in here. Part of it is somewhat open with grass and sagebrush and some is thicker with trees. In 1988 there was a fire that burned quite a bit of Yellowstone and close to West Yellowstone. This area was burned in the fire. The tallest trees in this area were probably planted a couple of years after that fire. You can definitely see rows of trees in places. When Forrest made some posts in the past as Forrest Fire, I thought he might have been trying to see if anyone was paying attention. This area is not one that many frequent due to it being past a dead end. It’s also not a spectacular looking area. No water, or trails, just trees, sagebrush, animals, grass and a fairly safe place but you have an unusually high number of bear and wolves right next door at the center.
If you’ve been wise and found the blaze. While standing at the end of canyon I gazed around for any sign that something could be a blaze. About 1/4 mile south I spotted something and told my son that it might be the blaze. Most might not even spot this object unless really paying attention. It was a radio tower with a beacon light. The word beacon is also known as a blaze. It is visible during the day but is clearly visible at night. This made me think that Forrest long ago told everyone they might want to take a flashlight and sandwich because the blaze was more evident at night. I believed that the blaze was the red beacon on top of the radio tower. In My War For Me, f talks about how the blink was winking at him. The beacon on the tower also winks. In that story he also talks about how some place was beaconing to him. I thought that was an odd choice for wording when he could have said beckoning. When I considered those things it seemed to add up. Also in his book and some recent replies to questions he uses red letters. Where I began was a red light and the blaze is also a red light. Red is also one of the colors in the rainbow. Could the Firehole Ave. light and the beacon light be the beginning and the end of Forrest’s rainbow?
As for the sixth stanza I thought that Hear me all referred to Radio Rd. which is south of town that goes right to the blaze. Forrest also mentions radio a number of times in other stories. He also used the word canned for getting fired from his newspaper job. Canned can also refer to pre-recorded radio. Your effort will be worth the cold if you are brave and in the wood. I was doing some internet research before we took our first trip and was studying West Yellowstone. West Yellowstone is located on a very cold and heavily wooded plateau so that was good enough for me. Also if you remember back to The Totem Café Caper Story, Forrest talks about Frosty’s polarity. West Yellowstone sits almost exactly in the middle between the North Pole and the equator.
To conclude I must say that this area south of West Yellowstone does not contain Indulgence. I did see new country, learned new things, made memories with my son that are priceless, and learned to adjust to the poem. I took a total of three trips to this area with only two of them allowing for searches due to the weather. Another searcher graciously searched for me this fall as well. He shot some video which I appreciated very much. F is correct when he says the poem is important. It contains so much more than what you might expect. I learned to see not read.
Hear Me All-