Forrest gets dozens of emails each day from folks looking for his fabled bronze chest. Every once in a while he shares some of his email with us. Below is some of Forrest’s personal brand of wit and wisdom.
Names have been deleted and/or changed and there is the occasional edit to keep us from identifying the senders.
We’ll start out with a simple note sent to Forrest from a searcher who is headed home empty-handed. I think we can all empathize.
I fear I may share the fate of Tantalus, I thought I had solved all the clues but I think I’m going to fall at the final hurdle. I thought the treasure was buried roughly six feet from the 8pm position on the crescent, in line with the submerged tree stump but alas I was wrong! It’s been a joy to learn of your life, I’ve been a treasure hunter since the age of ten but have never risen above the rank of amateur. But as you say, it’s the thrill of the chase that gets us every time even if it does get us in trouble with our wives! Many thanks Forrest and good luck to whoever solves the final piece of the puzzle.
I have a couple of suggestions for your final hour:
1) I would make you a similar offer like Olga requested of you – I would drive you in my vehicle – wait for a specified period of time (as determined by you) – and then drive back home. Or
2) You can put the title of your vehicle in my name, make sure you don’t leave anything personal in it at your final resting place, wipe down any fingerprints, then, when it is found it will be in my name, have my address etc. (be sure to send me photos of it)—people would swear that it was your vehicle because they had seen you driving it, but, with it being in my name I don’t think they would think twice about it. And, NO I don’t need another vehicle I have six (6) already in the family. I would sell the vehicle for you and make an anonymous donation to a Non-Profit organization of your choice.
3) Also, I could suggest Parachuting—that would take you back in time, however, I feel you would be too old (sorry) to make it safe to your final resting spot after that endeavor.
I wouldn’t want you to commit suicide like your father but, I understand. You could draw-up a contract for us to sign stating that I couldn’t claim the Treasure. Doing it yourself would ensure that no one other than you and I would know the plan. Just a thought, I know you don’t know me or I you, I just feel a connection with you somehow. Maybe it’s just the long forgotten memories of my youth. Then again, you may want to choose a closer friend or not. Just think about it. No rush! I’ll go on with the remainder of my day either way.
I am a very simple person and you want me to have copious meetings with lawyers, preachers, undertakers and your family. What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the “water high” when I am through with it? You don’t know how many man hours I have spent on that subject. Thanks for the input but I think you should mobilize your club and hit the trail searching for the wondrous treasure. Besides, I’ll probably get hit by a train. When you find the treasure please come sell me the great turquoise and silver bracelet that is in the chest. I wish now that I had kept it. f
Dear Mr. Fenn,
I am planning on leaving this Friday and spending the weekend looking for your treasure. I believe I know exactly where it is, like you said everything you need is in the poem, and if I find it I would like to thank you in person. I also would like to give you the chance to see the treasure again. I know I sound very sure of myself but once you figure it out everything makes perfect sense. Thank you again.
Confidence will take you a long way and I wish you luck. Please come see me with the treasure. I may make you an offer for the row bracelet. Wish I had kept it now. f
Heading out on another search to a spot I think has a lot of merit. I was hoping to get your take on a couple of questions before I head out.
1) Can you give me the context in which you said the treasure was “in the mountains North of Santa Fe”? It seems a lot of people have taken that phrase and ran with it. My question is whether or not this was intended to be a clue.
2) Was there significance, beyond an anecdote for the book, of the Horseshoe in “Thrill of the Chase”?
The treasure chest certainly is in the mountains somewhere north of Santa Fe, and that is a clue. That is not to say it is exactly 360 degrees from Santa Fe, but generally. If you start chasing horseshoes you may go crazy, but it’s the thrill of the chase, remember? Other clues I have given but are not commonly known are: It’s not in Nevada and it is more than 300 miles west of Toledo, but those won’t help you much. Good luck. f
Last month, i read about the treasure hunt you started – and I have been thinking about it ever since! I just wanted to send you a note to tell how much i appreciate the adventure that you started. I’m having so much fun!
After reading about the hunt, i ordered the book and started thinking about where the treasure could be. Since i live in Colorado, i feel like i am in the perfect place to look in the mountains “somewhere north of Sante Fe.”
Have you provided any guidance about how we should be reading the poem and approaching the hunt? Any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
Thank you again for initiating this adventure! I’ll let you know when we find it.
PS: I recently found a solution to the poem that would be brilliant, if it was correct. I am tempted to share it with you… do you give feedback on hunters’ ideas? But perhaps it is better to just wait until i can go to the spot myself and see if the solution actually leads to the chest.
I agree that you are in an ideal location from which to search for the treasure. I have received 4,526 emails, many of them similar to yours. It is not feasible for me to give feedback and be fair to everyone. There is lots of feedback on my web site if you want to follow what other people are doing. I am glad you are in the chase with your friends. I will give you an important clue, no need to look for the treasure in a place where a 79 or 80 year old man couldn’t go with a 44 pound treasure chest full of gold and precious gems. Good luck. f
My wife told me to write to you to clear my head or get kicked out, because she thinks I’m obsessing way more than I should. Not like this is gonna help but I said fine.
Sorry, maybe your wife will let you sleep in the barn. f
I know we don’t need the book to find it but I can’t help to think that you put a road map of sorts in it, as nothing in the book is just there for the hell of it. Like the colophon you used.
Then there’s them little stamps you made with days that don’t match the years. I have put a lot of time into trying to understand them.
Question for yea, what did you do first? Hide the trove or write the book and how long did it take to do the book? And why in the hell did you make all them little stamps? Lastly, this Obsession is not good for a relationship, I hope I’m on to somethen , cause if not I’m gonna need a room.
You are not the first to figure the postmarks into some kind of equation. What difference does it make which one came first, the book or the hiding? You are an individual thinker and the kind who might find the treasure. But remember, if you follow yourself around a circle sooner or later you’ll be behind yourself. Happy hunting. f
I came across your name through a Google search of “Metal Detecting in New Mexico”. My intent was to find historical maps of New Mexico to help guide me to a good spot to hunt for treasure. I just purchased a metal detector and I plan on taking my kids on an adventure. It’s my heavy-hearted belief that kids lack any sense of adventure anymore and camping to kids these days means camping in line for the next iPhone. I read more about you and I thought it was pretty neat that you were in the Air Force.
At 21, going to war seemed noble and adventurous, but after seeing war and not understanding why we are at war, it’s anything but an adventure. These deployments are getting longer, less organized and we are doing it with less people due to budget cuts. More with less is something that should be reserved for the woods, not the Air Force.
The purpose of this email is to say thank you. I’m not on my hunt for your treasure, yet, but the thought of an adventure of this magnitude really picked me up. I’ll be deploying again at the end of the year and the taste of adventure will pass the time as I count the days down. I think I’m going to start in Wyoming and end the trip in the mountains of Montana. Even if I come home without any bounty, the adventure will be unforgettable. Thank you for your service to the country and thank you again for this brilliant and exciting mission!
I joined the AF as a private and made buck Sgt. before going to pilot training. I stayed 20 years and 24 days. The military was good for me and to me. Thank you for your service also. f
I READ YOUR LATEST BOOK. COOL STUFF. I WOULD LIKE TO FLY DOWN AND HAVE A CUP OF RED TEA WITH YOU.
NOTHING ABOUT YOUR COOL TREASURE(I HAVE ENOUGH AND WOULD LEAVE THAT FOR SOMEONE MORE DESERVING). HOPE YOUR STILL ALIVE! LET ME KNOW.
Why would you fly from all of the way from Red Wing to Santa Fe just to have red tea with a flaps-down fighter pilot, and not care about the treasure because you have plenty? You sound like my kinda guy.
I haven’t seen where anyone has asked you if you mean Santa Fe, New Mexico or another Santa Fe. I think we all assume Santa Fe, NM but there is a Santa Fe, TX as well as in other states. Have you specifically said New Mexico? Maybe we should expand our search area to in the mountains somewhere north of Santa Fe, Argentina. Once again, if I ask too much please forgive me and disregard this e-mail. I have really enjoyed this puzzle, thank you.
I didn’t think of that Franklin. But yes, it’s Santa Fe, New Mexico. f
We looked around the area of “Forest Creek” near a blaze there on Cabin Creek but found nothing. We also looked in a small cave further downstream where the pinnacles of the cliff look like a blaze of fire and up the side of the opposite wall about 40 feet. We took bear spray as well as our 9mm’s(some elk hunters laughed at us and said it would only make the bears madder!) Nonetheless, we had a great time as brothers on an adventure and probably will not make it back up there anytime soon. Maybe we can visit again if we get back to Santa Fe.
Glad you got in the chase but bummer about not finding the treasure. Don’t give up, maybe next summer. Did you see any other caves near where you were looking? f
Recently, I purchased one of Eric Sloane’s books from the Collected Works Bookstore, “A Reverence for Wood”. I didn’t know if I would like it or not,maybe it would have a lot of technical terms in it and not being that knowledgeable about wood, maybe it would be boring to read. The title of the book was so interesting to me, however, that it was important to me that I read it.
At 8 years of age, my reading skills were not good so my mother thought she would foster in me a love of reading by buying me the books she loved to read when she was little. They were books written by Laura Ingalls Wilder. The first two given me were, “Little House in the Big Woods” and “Little House on the Prairie”. I was supposed to read 10 pages every night. Pretty soon, nobody was forcing me to read anything. My mother aways bought me two books at a time and in about two years or so I owned them all. I loved those books and read them over and over until the pages started looking ragged and the backs fell off of them. I kept reading them even when I was older and my reading skills had outgrown these children’s books.
What was so interesting to me was what life was like for a little pioneer girl in the 1800s. The stories had so much detail on how they cooked their food, made their clothes, built their homes and lived their lives with almost complete independence. It was easy to see how much pride someone could have in growing and raising most everything they ate or making everything they used. When a family traveled to a new place in a covered wagon, they couldn’t take much with them. Maybe some pretty dishes to display in their new home, a few books, the family bible, their clothes and bedding. Laura’s pa built their homes himself, made a table for dining, frames for their beds, rocking chair for Ma,a barn, etc and he made it all out of wood. I could see how wood was so essential to their lives. I also loved the illustrations in the books. They were all drawings and over time, they were as familiar and precious to me as the stories themselves.
As I read Mr Sloane’s book, I was struck by how it made me feel about times long gone, just like my beloved books of my youth. I could understand how he felt about wood and what it meant to people one hundred or two hundred years ago. Through trying to figure out where your treasure is hidden, I have gone off on numerous tangents, researching even the people you mention in your book. I might never have heard of Eric Sloane if I hadn’t read your book and so I thank you.
It is nice to be able to touch someone once in a while. f
I had a chance to scoot down the Madison this evening. Its a beautiful river. I’ve never seen it before. Next I’ll have to be concerned about a blaze but first things first. The “home of Brown” is first. I walked some nice river tonight and saw some beautiful flywater. Will check out more tomorrow.
I am afraid you will figure the clues and find the chest. That’s why I am trying to guide you to where the grizzlies hide near Brown’s house and wait for treasure hunters. It was a hard winter for them and they are really hungry.
Thanks for sharing Forrest.