Be Careful Out There……

MARCH 2015

Wildlife don’t always understand us humoresque type folks out and about on their land and unlike citizens they can’t legally buy land or post “no trespassing” signs. So we often don’t know that we’re bugging them…

In my opinion this is how Forrest has trained the woodland animals to keep us away from his chest..and if you think this is intimidating you should see what the porcupines do!!!

Click on the pic below to watch “Elk vs Photographer”.





79 thoughts on “Be Careful Out There……

      • That brings up a very good point to the long term status of the type of disturbance or lack thereof that “indulgence”, the tc, may encounter from wildlife aside from any physical weather impacts. Generally accepted that it would not literally be stumbled over, right?, so must be protected enough such that animals would have very limited access or lack of attraction to get at ff bones, IMO.

        Not being morbid just considering that I would in fact protect myself/body and my treasures to a degree to secure for long term. How would one stay hidden with a box in there arms from the small rodentia, scavengers, and random curious animals poking around? This is if ff still hid tc in same respective manner and “exact” location he planned in either case of being with it in the end or not.

        For example, in or under a stump or in a hollowed tree that could catch fire or get uprooted at some point in a deteriorating fashion or under a bush where rats or bunnies could dig holes under the chest with eventual soil erosion and toppling the tc would not seem feasible.

        Rock cubby hole or crevice more likely? Protection from animals, insects would be a different matter, or not?


        • Steve, these are good points. I have reason to believe that the treasure is on “solid ground”, in the sense that it will not be carried away by a strong river or flash flooding but can still get wet or even immersed in water (no harm done, really). Maybe wedged between large rocks or in a depression. Also no protection from small critters. I imagine that if f placed his body there, it would be directly laying over or next to the treasure. The general area is protected from most large animals for a specific reason, but again subject to the ravages of all the little critters mice / rodents and insects. This is fine with f as this is just the natural cycle. But generally protected from large scavengers because of the specific type of location.
          If not found in a lifetime or two, the site could be subject to changes by earthquakes, landslides and other topographical changes that will alter and change the ability to searchers to find all the 9 clues. IMHO.
          Good insight on your part.

          • Think it’s prob more likely he means he’d like his ashes spread in the area the chest is in. That’s how I understood it.
            Like Sombody said any other way his bones would be near chest would be a bit morbid. What you recon??

          • Mountain-
            One might think so but Forrest wrote the first poem after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer back in 1988. He has said many times that at that time he planned on taking the chest with him when he died, leaving the poem behind for others to find and follow to the chest and his bones. He planned on taking a handful of sleeping pills, as his father had done. So there would not have been ashes and the “morbidness” of the scene would have depended on the amount of time between death and discovery…and of course the eye of the beholder. Forrest has told us that the place where the chest is hidden now is the same place he intended to be when he was planning on ending his life long before the Thrill of the Chase that we are all interested in today.

        • I haven’t worked all the way through a solution just yet, but I believe the chest is behind or at the bottom of a falls – water, cold, quickly down, etc. – also – safe from animals, wardens, fires, etc. Perhaps he found a hidden niche behind a falls somewhere.

  1. I don’t photograph well either. But I suppose I’ll keep trying. Maybe I might happen upon a unique one yet.

  2. It’s all fun and games until someone loses an eye… luckily this fellow didn’t. Definitely entertaining though.

    • 🙂 Michael, I like reading your posts/thoughts… You always have a keen sense. I don’t know if I’d go as far as interpreting it as love, but certainly the elk was curious about him sitting there so quietly and submissively. (Unlike what other people would be doing) It’s an interesting video. Glad the man didn’t get an eye poked out.
      My cat Cody does the head bump to me all the time. He climbs up on my chest and bumps the top of his head into my face until I give him kisses on the top of his head… which I always give willingly and gratefully. Very sweet.

    • Hi Amy i saw a blogg you were chatting in saying Sombody els knew where it was but I lost the page before I could read on also mentioned he’d ruffled his feathers?? Could you point me to right blogg so I can read on pls?
      I spent hours last night trying to find it again…newbie!:-)

  3. What was with the people In the black GMC? They never tried to help. Poor guy was being challenged by a buck, so you think they could have driven up to try to help him…..

    Most awesome thing I have seen in a while.

  4. That’s scary. I can almost hear the elk saying, “Quit taking my picture, and I’ll stop roughing you up!” 🙂

    • It did look like he was playing but there were a few pretty intense moments that I thought the elk was going to get him with the sharp tip of his antler.

    • I think the young elk was picking on the guy. He was trying to prove to himself that he was formidable.

    • Stan:
      Ha!…that’s not me…
      I don’t have a death wish. I would not have played “head butt” with a young elk. When I watch that I am amazed that the elk managed to not gore the guy by mistake…and that elk’s cranium is made for head butting…mine is not..I would need to wear a hockey helmet with face shield and body armour…then set down some rules be fore we played his game… 🙂

        • Close-
          Glad you asked-
          Forrest sent me the link yesterday with a note saying the following:

          “Spring is among us again and many searchers are already out looking for the treasure. Please remember that pepper spray works on all kinds of critters. f”

          • I wonder how well pepper spray would work on my kids when they are fighting? Hmmm… 🙂

          • Hey JCM,
            Just spray yourself next time the young ones fight…ha ha…that way you won’t get in trouble.

          • Silly Dal, are you losing it? 😉
            Forgot the f caption?
            We’re working you too hard!

      • Dal, Like it or not… Every since Roberta Williams quit making the Kings Quest series things have just never quite been the same since. That is the reason for all the problems we face today.

  5. Simply amazing. Kudos to the photographer for a grand demonstration of self control and knowledge of wildlife.

    A nice reminder that when in the wood be alert. 🙂

    Love it dal thanks.

  6. Bear smelling food in camp……Chomp Chomp Crush Crush, Coming down the hill. Me Run Run to van. Me Fall, Me stay in van all night. Bear, eat all food. and much more damage and rest of story to come.

  7. The video has been around for a while. Because of the interaction, the elk was considered to be a danger and was shot by the forest service. Stay away from the animals, or those forest guardians may end the animals life.

  8. Wish I had a picture of them moose chasing us You had no time to stand and shoot pepper spray all you can do is run .

  9. So if we want to take something out of the park that doesn’t naturally belong there, well, we’re NOT ALLOWED! But our “park service” can “protect” us from the animals that DO belong there. Sad state of affairs indeed.

    • Yeah, and if the animal had killed the next person, what would your comment have been then??? If you think protecting the visitors to the Park, many of which think it’s a big petting zoo, is a “Sad state of affairs”, you’ve got a pretty twisted outlook.

      • Dakota, California’s state emblem depicts the grizzly bear. There have been no wild grizzlies in California since 1922! That is the sad state of affairs, the presence of PEOPLE who want to see wild animals end up ELIMINATING those same animals from their habitat !!!

        Answer the question you posit, are the National Parks petting zoos? Yeah, kill off bears and elk that become accustomed to people because people are disturbing animals, then eventually the animals are GONE !!!
        And the people are safe, and can go back to their video games.


        • I was in my car in Yellowstone, right behind a line of Bison walking the park road. I backed off from the Bison as 2 of them started fighting in front of my car. Pedestrians were walking in front of my car to watch the fighting. As I made a large gap between my car and the bison, a large black bear ran full speed across the road, within INCHES of a woman watching the fight. The bear could have knocked the woman over or attacked her if he wanted to. Apparently he just wanted to get across the road. What happened next ? The car behind me passed me to get close to the action.
          The fighting bison backed up on the hood of this car.
          I could give you many more stories such as this one.
          So what do we do? Keep protecting people from themselves. Kill the bear, kill the bison. Kill the elk. Kill ’em all. But keep on widening the roads so that the big motorhomes can transport more idiots through the park, and the Rangers can spend all their time routing traffic around the bear sighting areas. Protecting the people from themselves, that’s what our Park Rangers do.

          • Yeah maybe that is why F wrote the poem….To get people out into the real wild areas to experience things the way they were when he was a kid or maybe he is just like the rest of us a modern video junky lol 🙂

    • This is a link to what effect removing wolves had on Yellowstone years ago. I pasted it on the nine clues yesterday but it fits here better. We need to leave the animals alone, don’t feed them. Watch them at a distance and we can keep enjoy them. Sometimes I think that humans have to be some of the dumbest animals in the woods.

  10. ALL,

    Be careful out there apparently a deadly Grizzly bear attack this Friday in YSNP. Not much information at this time but said it happened on a popular off trail area. Hope it wasn’t a searcher !


  11. Why do people go out into the wild’s without protection? I dont get that. I bet Forrest takes his gun. Hubby and I take our’s. Not out to hurt any animal, but I will if necessary.

    • I wouldn’t relay on a gun in bear country. I’m not against carrying a gun but all the experts agree that bear spray is more effective. About 50% of the people using firearms are attacked anyway compared to less that 10% of people that use bear spray. I would carry both if I had the chance. IMO

      • I agree with you Not bsesse, I think most people panic in this type of situation and take random fast shot[s]. They may even hit their target but with a non lethal shot.
        Any good hunter will tell you a bad shot on a prey happens too often, lead to more problems and that is usually in a much more controlled situation. That and the wrong weapon may not have the knock down power needed.

        Some here may have research Lewis and Clark and seen a story on killing a grizzly they came across. 15 or so shots from multiple long arms and shooters were need to take the animal.

        Bear spray is designed to be used over a larger span or an attack area… then a bullet. And IMO is more affective with an aggressive grizzly. Black bears are for a lack of a better term, more easily deterred by loud noises, where a griz may take that as an act of aggression, a threat and attract. Especially face to face.

        The other thing is, Spray can be used on other deadly threats and with no harm to those animals as well. The main thing is to “learn” more before heading out to a place you are unfamiliar with… common sense if your best protection.

        or bring somone with you… that you can out run.

        • I carry bear mace (UDAP) and a large-caliber revolver simply because I like to be prepared and choose not to rely on fate, faith, or hope. Seeker and NO’s comments coincide with my research on grizzly attacks. The bear mace is the go-to choice for all four-legged threats, and the revolver is there for last-resort scenarios of the two- and four-legged kind.

          I’ve seen youtube videos in which people have used a firearm as a noise-maker, and it has worked. One video was an Alaskan momma-Brown with cub, and she turned around and quickly retreated. Always best to have options, IMO, and especially if you are a solo-hiker. If injured, you can also use your firearm as a signalling device.
          Be prepared.

  12. It’s really sad they are going to kill the mother bear. She was just protecting her cub. Any bear would do that. Seems to be money motivated–don’t want to lose those entrance fees, it’s bigger salaries for the employees.

  13. Bears that have attacked defending their cubs in YNP are not usually put down. The difference here is that the victim was partially consumed. Meaning that defending her cub may not have been the purpose for the attack.

    • You could be correct Windy City, But I think we are all missing the grand picture here IMO.

      This is not a wild animal that we place in a cage for our entertainment and got lose in the inner city and starts attacking everything in site. WE the people have gone to its habitations and cry when it does what come natural for it too do. If I placed a story of a searcher getting hit by a bus at YNP or any others search area… no one would think twice about it.

      Sure we need to think about be cautious in those areas when there. But we need to keep a realistic view that we are jumping into a situation that nature rules and not the society. If that person, and sad as it is [ the story of the bear attack ] was bitten by a rattler or gored by a bison would the park take the same steps? and look for those and put them down. It does come down to ticket sales and public perception that these places will protect the visitors… which is a false security.

      But yet these national parks get millions of visitors each years and with all the dangers… flash floods, animal attacks, poisonous insects, falls, drownings, heat strokes, fires, and even getting lost and be taken for over exposures to the element etc. More people die in bathtubs and showers than in parks.

      Perspective and common sense is what we show be talking about if seriously trying to be safe.

  14. I’m sure other people said the same thing, but I can’t imagine watching something like that without using my voice, horn, and car maneuvering to help frighten the bull away.

  15. Lost Treasure Hunter: According to this morning’s Santa Fe New Mexican newspaper. Search teams are trying to find a treasure hunter who traveled to Santa Fe from Colorado in search of Forrest Fenn’s hidden treasure chest and apparently used an inflatable raft on the Rio Grande. Police said Friday they found Rany Bilyeu’s small brown-and-white dog, Leo, along the river about nine miles downstream from his dark-blue 2009 Nissan Murano, which was parked at the end of Buckman Road in an area commonly used by people who go hiking or rafting.
    Bilyeu, 54, remains missing, and teams are searching for him on foot and by helicopter. “It appears that Mr. Belyeu may have gone down the river on an inflatable raft, which was also found near his dog”. Members of the New Mexico Search & Research Team are now handling the search. A missing person report was flied on the Jan 14th and he may be missing about the 5th on. Please pray for Randy!

  16. I asked this question back in 2014 because I was worried about searchers I know. I think Forrest has been very clear about safety. He repeatedly has made statements that ppl should go prepared and not to take any chances. My prayers are with this guy, I hope they find him alive.

    Question posted 6/9/2014:

    You said in the past that the chest is not in a dangerous place; yet searchers are searching along Cliffside’s, raging water, and other seemingly dangerous places. Could you please elaborate or qualify your statement in which you said” The chest is not in a dangerous place”

    Edward, thanks for the question.
    The treasure is not hidden in a dangerous place in the normal definition of the word, realizing that there probably is no place on this planet that is safe under all conditions. Bloggers have quoted me as saying that a child could walk up to the treasure. I don’t think that’s an accurate quote because a three year old girl would have a problem without some help. Remember, I was about 80 when I hid the chest, and had to make two trips.f

  17. Safety tips other than the normal trip like being prepared for your search for the chest in the spring time.

    Beware its spring turkey season in all the states for the treasure hunt. Here’s the hunting dates for each state.
    New Mexico Apr-15 through may-10
    Colorado Apr-9 through may-22
    Montana Apr-9 through may-15
    Wyoming Apr-1 through May-20
    When a turkey hunt is going on the hunters ware all camouflage and won’t have any bright colors on and when there set up while calling a turkey in they will have a camouflage mask on. A turkeys eye site is real good and they can see brite colors that why the mask and also the hunter will be real still and will be hard to notice.
    As a hunter also while out hunting I have seen how some turkey hunters get up set when the turkey gets scared off because of someone hiking. Besides as most of us know there are some hunters that are stupid and unsafe so don’t just think of the chest and be aware of what’s around you.
    Also keep in mind that this is the time of the year when snakes start coming out along with the bears come out of hibernation and are hungery. If you are looking in places that may look like a cave be careful you never know it could be a den for a bear. Stay safe, be prepared, let others know where your going and be aware of what’s around you at all times. Good luck.

    • More advice:
      If your using electronic devices, GPS, Emergency Beacons ~{ can be rented } etc. Learn how to use them… Many Idiot Phone GPS won’t work in many areas, nor give all location as well.
      Personally, I’d advise to learn how to mark a trail, when off trail… there are many simple ways. Just take the time to look them over.
      Wildlife is always unpredictable… but there is no excuse for ignorance.

      • I agree with JDA Seeker, that’s good advice. I’m amazed every year at the number of people that get into serious trouble in the wilderness that is totally preventable; and the number is growing.

        I like all my gizmos (I have lots of them) as much as anyone. But if they are anything more than a convenience you will find yourself in big trouble sooner or later; most likely sooner.

        It’s also surprising how many folks I run across that actually have the proper survival equipment but have no idea how to use it. Or the guy that rents a preppy 4 wheel drive and thinks he’s invincible and can go anywhere.

        The line between a wonderful afternoon and absolute disaster is very thin in the wilderness. The law of natural selection is proven every year in the Rockies. Mother nature is an unforgiving old gal.

        If you’re gonna be stupid, you gotta be tough.

    • The turkey hunters are probably warning each other to watch out for Fenn treasure hunters. In any case, there are going to be a lot of turkeys out there.

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