Mike and Heather Look for Randy…

January 22nd, 2016


Heather and I have never, in all our lives, met so many people who were willing to put another person before them, and writing these words brings tears to my eyes. These are the heart beats of the future and I am damned privileged to have met each of these people.

Heather and I  got involved simply because I have children and read on the blog that Randy was missing. So I contacted Dal and Linda, letting them know I would come down. I read those words I awoke my little Lady Heather and with a lump in my throat tears streaming down my face and could barely get out the words  “ Honey we have to go “ and that “Randy’s kids needed us”, and “we had to go . She agreed and was out of bed in 5 seconds. We barely grabbed clothes. I took my pack, heavy coats, gloves,2 pairs of pants, and my Treasure Heather. Heather and I  never knew Randy, but that didn’t matter. All that mattered was we got involved to help get him home to his Kids.

We emailed Dal and told him we were heading out. He suggest we don’t be to hasty, Dal knowing my past, understood that I have some very serious medical conditions and was looking out for my best interest.

I can barely even type these words as they fill my eyes full of tears and my heart heavy for Randy and his family. We have 5 sons. We cannot even begin to understand how they as a family feel, but having our own, we can only feel they’re hearts.

Every one involved in this search, as well as any Fenn hunter in my opinion, is most likely the kindest people this country has to offer. Selfless, love filled people with hearts as heavy as ours.

Today the thoughts of driving through the mud on those mountain roads made the trip dangerous at best. Huge rocks in the path along with steep muddy hills and soft shoulders due to snow melt off. This could even get the best of mud trucks stuck. The mud sticks like concrete to everything. And made our search very difficult. But Slurbs is the man when it comes to mudding.

So Slurbs, keep in touch buddy, we have a Mud date!  Wait is that a Man date? LOL

He and I drove up a mud hill at almost a 90 degree angle, and me in my little white SUV That barely could push it.  While we slid side ways at times and Heather was a bit worried at the time due to the amount of gas we had left. So we parked and got in Slurbs’ truck  to continue on. I’m sure the determination of all of us over powered any sense of danger of being stuck out there and pushed our group forward.

Slurbs can drive!!!!! But let me tell you I feel every screw in my neck today from those roads.

Heather was tired and I commend her for supporting me as well as the team. She is my back bone and the love of my life.

Slurbs, Roger, Sacha, Cynthia, Eric, Daisy,  Heather my wife, and others I have not mentioned; Thank you. I have never met better people. I will never forget each and every warmth and kindness you showed to this search. You all are my direct heroes. I hope to see you at the Fenn gathering in June. My whole Family will be there.

To all people who are searching for the Forrest Fenn Treasure. Please, please be careful when you go into the wilderness looking for that chest. Remember:You are not looking in a dangerous place.

Don’t go where F could not.
Take supplies, lots of water, food, and any other tool that can help you be found .
Bring blankets and dry clothes.
Be prepare for a week in the woods if you can.
Get a Spotter, link to a love ones cell number so they can track your steps .
Be smart, do not put your life on the line.

Nothing is more precious then you, that is why you have chose to be apart of this entire thing.


68 thoughts on “Mike and Heather Look for Randy…

  1. Thank you Mike and Heather for your selflessness and actions on behalf of Randy and his family…It’s encouraging to know such good people exist and are among the family in the chase…Take a rest and let your body heal some…

    There are many dedicated others going out to aid the search as much as possible…My best and my prayers are with all searchers who want to help in any capacity they can…I wish I, myself, could do more than just theorize about possibilities…

    Hopefully the brave efforts of all involved can help bring closure on an otherwise unfortunate situation…I feel useless being so far away, but will remain hopeful…

    It’s snowing like the devil here on our little TN mountain tonight with high winds as well…Praying the weather remains favorable over the next days in the Rio Grande area so the search doesn’t get put on hold…

    • Hi Sam ,

      I was trying not to tell about the pain thing . But sam has spoke the truth .

      Sam , Thank you for your service and bravery you showed by Protecting us as a Marine . Your service is why we are able to do these things .

      Also thank you for your kind words. Well excepted and placed in Our treasure chest.

      Heather and Mike

  2. Your heart sings in your post this evening, Mike. Truly a beautiful, heartfelt story. Although I do not know you or the searchers, I feel that I do. A big thank you to everyone involved. Please be safe.

    • Hi pdenver ,

      I could not with hold the door to my heart that night , nor could Heather. Thanks for your support to the searchers . Believe me it is not easy to go out there and not find anything. It makes you feel as if you did not accomplish what you set out to do . And our hearts felt it that night this was written .

      • Thank you for your response. I truly do understand, Mike. My heart goes out to everyone who has taken their time to go out and look for Randy. I can feel the goodness in your hearts. My heart especially goes out to Randy’s family.

  3. Mike and Heather,
    Your empathy for Randy and his children shines through your good deeds. The recommendations for searching either for the treasure or a lost treasure hunter are sound and will serve other searchers well to follow. I always say plan for the worst and hope for the best.

  4. Mike it is difficult to deal with this situation.
    Your suggestion of being prepared for mishaps is good advise.
    I sent the following to Dal. With all of the search activity he may be to busy to add to it and post it. So I will post it here.

    Suggested items for a backpack

    Over the years I have participated in this blog.
    Being an ole Marine I have noted that a lot of searchers
    take many useful items in their search for the chest.

    If I may be so bold as to make a few suggestions
    for additions to one’s backpack, most will be light weight.

    1) a hand size mirror. In case of an emergency it can be used to reflect
    sunlight toward aircraft flying over or nearby.

    2) A handheld boat air horn. Three blasts from this horn is a signal
    for help. And will aid searchers in finding you.

    3) A fire starting kit. This can be assembled with water proof matches, a candle and some kindling. Para-cord, etc All of which can be put into a old used up deodorant container that has been cleaned out and modified to hold the items.

    4) Naturally, bear spray.

    5) A decent survival knife. There are several ones that are cost effective and contain useful items in the handle. An ideal survival knife will have a serrated edge opposite the cutting edge. This can be used to cut wood.

    6) A campus and a map of the search area. This will aid you in finding your way back to your search starting point. Yes I realize that today’s phones can have a gps on it. What if the battery dies? A roll of plastic florescent marker tape, it is not sticky it is just for tying onto boundary stakes. Surveyors use it to mark building lots. You can use it to mark your trail to your search area and can be removed as your return from it.
    7) MRE’s Also known as ready to eat meals. I would recommend at least 4 of them.
    These are kept in your backpack and aside from food at base camp.
    8) A P38 It can be found at army surplus stores or on ebay. It is a can opener that can be attached to your key chain. I have carried one since my corp days.
    9) Water purification tablets or the straws they offer today. If you run out of potable water these can be a life saver.
    10) ** Optional ** A flare gun. The type they use on small boats. This can be useful in areas that are wet and rainy. Would not recommend it’s use during dry periods where starting a fire would possible.
    Hope this is helpful to all. Happy hunting

    • Hi chad im one of the people searching for Randy and also a big hunter and also have learned a little about survival. There are some things also that are usefull and here are some things i carry in my small fanny pack that has many pockets for the short hikes and for the long ones my big pack.
      1. In both packs i have a little film or an old pill bottle with cotton ball that are soaked or covered in vaseline. This is a real good fire starter it lights easy and burns long and almost every time burns long enough to even dry wet leaves, grass, and small peices of wood and get the fire going. You do have to spread the cotton ball. I also in my big pack carry a small can of sterno to do this. Along with eather water proof matches or a wind proof lighter.

      2. For food ill carry small cans of sardeans, or a cans of vienna sausages and may be kappers theres other small cans or pouches of food that you can open with out needing any thing to open them. Also another thing is even some packets of surger with will keep you from having a chance of dizzyness and will help keep you in the right mind set..
      3. Of course alot of water. But i will carry some of these little container of pills that you can get to put in water to make it safe to drink if you have to get water out of a stream or any other wate source. These can be bought at most camping or hunting stores…
      4. A tip if you get stuck out there and dont have any thing to start a fire you need to get some place where you can make a shelter or some place that is a good shelter. When that is done get your self in a ball and get your jacket and pull it over your head and covet your body up as much as you can. This will keep you warm do to your breath is warm and will help keep you warm.
      The other things you talked about, like knife, cumpass, mirror or something that reflects, instead of air horn a whistle, also a small magnifying glass witch will start a fire if theres sun.
      Thanks for putting your tips on here because ive been meaning to myself for people to know and be safe bur keep forgetting to do so. I would also want to say everyone keep safe.

      • Also include an extra battery for your smartphone. You may also download a GPS program for it. It is said that most cell phones already have a tracking system. But you need the power from the battery to make it work.
        And include the cord to connect the battery to the phone.

      • Crushed potato chips are lightweight and can be eaten or used as a fire starter. I like to carry simple dual purpose items.

      • I add a small bottle of whiteout to my pack list. In a dry arroyo there can be many forks ,so I mark a rock or tree to follow the path out and not take a wrong turn. After a couple of rain’s it will wash away,so your not permanently defacing the place you marked.

        • While taking hunting training course, we were taught to use party streamers. Just as the rain washing out the markings, so too, will the paper deteriorate. As for me, I would use the plastic tapes and remove upon my return.

  5. Thank you for looking for Randy.

    When I go into wilderness I carry two Life Straws, in separate pouches of my back pack in case one breaks. I also carry an incendiary device: cardboard soaked in paraffin. Perhaps if Randy has these two items he could have sent up a smoke.

    • With all do respect, you can take your nitpicking and pretentious responses somewhere else. I see no circumstance where someone writing an emotional response to a missing human being needs to be corrected on a simple geometry snafu in their writing.

      Internet trolling is not becoming of you, or anyone for that matter.

    • Thanks Amber ,
      For your words .

      Yes I meant 45 degrees. I didn’t realize that in writing that Sensationalism was a word or a form of writing for that matter. You are right, that is not me at all , and I can respect way you asked. I live by my heart , love and life. Respect for others and our Earth .
      Thank you ! I will try to keep that in mind while I write. Sorry

      • Hey mike im sure you remember me from the tuesday search for randy and i thank theres no problem with being emotional about this even if you dont no the person we are searching for. With you having children you can help to think how you would feel if that was one of them out there or if it was some one you cared alot about. Also if it was one of us that this was to happen to you would hope that there where people like you, me or like all the other people that have been keep the search alive after the state police and search and rescue have stopped. Theres nothing wrong with what you have said. After our talk when we where leaving blue corn where we all ate and met with Forest Fenn i took your advice and looked up what an indian friend gave me for an indian name witch was ( Wolf ) and like you said it is an honor for a none indian like me for a full blooded indian to give me that name. It was good to have been able ti meet you and heather and the next time your down this way we will have to get a cup of coffee of just shoot the shit. Again thanks for your words.

        • The wolf spirit animal means the “teacher” and the “pathfinder.” I should know… it is my spirit animal. I lived with wolves for many years. They were all rescues and put into my life, but it took me a while to see why. Sadly, they are all gone now. We now have a little dog that we rescued from the Rez. She was born feral but turned herself into our service dog (err, little person, as she likes to be referred as). We trained her into the ways of the human world but her alerting to my medical condition, she taught herself.


  6. When we found out about Randy we were upset too. Everyone pulling together is something else. I hope the shots you got today helps. Be careful out there, found out in Alaska when you go out on the snowmobile it’s hard to search for someone so they have GPS you can use and return it when your done. May the searchers out there may want one. Ski Patrol Snowmobile Real Time GPS Tracking Device Surveillance $129.99 at Amazon It says uses cellular and GPS technology designed to be used with cell towers and GPS satellites all you need is a pre-paid sim card. The iTrack uses up to 32 satellite channels and cellular towers for accuracy up to ten feet. Multiple tracking modes. Hope everyone goes to amazon site and reads about it and gets one it could really help when were out there and help our families worry less too. This is a bad time to talk about this we’re trying to find someone’s loved one but we need to start being safer in hopes this never happens again. I did’nt know until tonight that Randy has children. I don’t really know what to say, I can only imagine what their going through. I can’t get there to help in the search wishing could be of some help. We will keep them in our prayers. Please be safe everybody. Virginia

    • Very good points, Virginia. I will look on Amazon and consider that device. I think this unfortunate situation gives us all an opportunity to reflect on our own safety and also our astounding ability to join together and reach out to our fellow man. Our human spirit is elevated by all the selfless generosity over the last few days.

      • Hey pirate,
        There are many different types of locators on the market. I have one with me all of the time I’m in the woods or mountains. You can also get a locator beacon if you already have a gps or a compass. Anything that will send out a signal in case you get hurt or lost is all you need. Ask any ranger and they will tell you whats best for the region. Location, location, location…

    • You are there helping , By you supporting all who are out there . I commend you just for that intention . Thank you for your support … This meant a lot to Me and Heather .

  7. Your a good man mike. I have 2 fusions and a computer wired up to the back of my neck. For a person will serious back problems to go out and look for Randy speaks of the type of man that you are. I’m also a old marine and we just have pain levels that are beyond comprehension and just keep going. Heather must also be just as great as you are mike. For her to not question why but just get up pack and go says abundance about her. Thank you for both of your efforts. You both are to be commended for your immediate response to mankind in a time of need.
    God Bless you and Heather and your family for your help and compassion…

    • Hi Tim ,

      I would like to thank you for all your kind words. Heather is my heart beat and the better side of me for sure. She is the strength that binds our love and is a true treasure her self.

      Next I would like to thank you for your service in the Military . Thank you for freedom.

  8. I take appropriate measures not to go missing, but if I ever find myself in those circumstances, please send these outstanding people after me.

    • “I take appropriate measures not to go missing, but if I ever find myself in those circumstances, please send these outstanding people after me.”

      Damn right. I would bring a pencil and paper and leave a note in my pocket thanking everyone who came looking for me. And $300 in $20 bills, with a P.S. asking them to go and buy some pizza.

  9. Mike, I’m so glad I got to meet you and Heather on Tuesday. I certainly won’t forget that day or the mud.. And you’re right, Slurbs is a pretty great guy. The whole group is radiant in many ways. Hope to see you two again,

  10. All good advice for preparation. I often go into areas that have no cell coverage. When alone I carry a SPOT Gen3 satellite tracker. I check in upon arrival, at lunch, and when I get back to vehicle. If I am staying overnight, it sends coordinates of my camp spot. If I’m in a difficult area I might send more check-in messages. The ‘check in’ sends an email to my wife, and a few others with my GPS coordinates, and a message to the effect of ‘I’m OK and my trip is on track’.
    There is a help button that lets your friends know that you are in trouble but in a non life threatening situation (maybe delayed with need to bivouac, but with adequate supplies for survival). Then there is the ‘red button’ (SOS button) that when pushed notifies search and rescue that you need to be rescued and it will send your GPS coordinates.

    I go in prepared to survive overnight (even when on a half-day trip) because rescue will not be immediate and can take up to 24 hours. The main thing this provides is peace of mind for family, friends, and self. It provides a back-up plan and forces me to be disciplined when I am alone, with knowledge that others know where I am in case things go wrong. The SPOT Gen3 costs about $150. The basic service plan costs $14.99 per month. In the service plan you set your email contacts up ahead of time. In addition I add local SR contacts for whatever area I’m going into.

    In my opinion winter is not the time to search. I have searched in winter, but I do not do that anymore. Finally, it is always good to remember that Fenn said that we should not go anywhere that a 79/80 year old would not go.

    Good luck to all searching for Randy and thanks for all that you are doing and have done.

  11. Just remember when chips are down treasure can be found in simple things.

    Have you heard a bird sing today, or listened to water flow?

    Did you know that tesoro (Spanish) or skatt (Norwegian) are other ways to say treasure in another language. These things bring me comfort in times of peril.

    “There is a world in every world, move in.”

  12. Something’s missing from your story Mike. And that’s the part where you actually looked for Randy Bilyeu.
    My suggestion: Keep writing here, but only about your search. Start the story at the point you get out of the car, and end it where you get back in the car.

    • I’m sorry ,

      But I think you have not understood this post. No I will not post each and every detail of our Search for Randy . The simple fact is we that day ,Monday did not find him nor Tuesday , nor Wednesday , nor Thursday. That alone heavies my and Heathers hearts and don’t think for the sake of Randy’s family that I need to . The posts from Cythina and Sacha cover all the recreant searches. Have you read them? Or any of the up dates? I simply want to tell why we went there.

      So Heather and I find your post very negative in circumstances , where positives are need to be shown instead.

      We searched for 4 long days. How many did you search for?

      Something is missing from your comment Respect and compassion . Sometimes somethings don’t even need to be mentioned to be understood.

      Me and Heather didn’t go there for Media attention.
      We went to support Randy’s Family and all who were looking . Including Forrest Fenn.

      • Mike, you did way more explaining then I would have ! Your post was heartfelt and sincere and you and your wife are commended for your hard work. Don’t waste your time explaining to this person what he most likely will never understand.
        We all felt your heavy hearts and anyone can see that you guys are special people with loving hearts.
        I personally want to thank you for everything you and your wife have done in an effort to bring Randy home.
        God Bless you and your family !

        • Eaglesabound ,

          Thank you and you are so right. I still have a lot to learn in life. I thank God for people like you who drive me forward. God bless you .

      • What is respect?
        Here’s another suggestion that gives you my answer: Write about your experiences as if you’re speaking directly to Randy’s daughters (since you are anyway).
        Do you want your efforts to sound like an off-road adventure, or a “man date”?

  13. From Heather and Mike JR.

    Searchers here is some simple facts about Apple Cell phones . Heather (My Wife) showed me how to use your cell phone as a “Spotter”
    You can send it even when you have no signal , and it will pin on Google Maps your exact location .
    This works for as far as we know so far , Apple to Samsung only .
    This is a great way to protect your self while you are in the woods and you want your loved ones to know where you are.

    This is how you send it from a Apple to Apple

    Simply go to messages then click on who you want to send your location to through messages;

    Then click “Details” Then click “Send My Current Location”

    Apple To Samsung Do the same thing .

    If the person you are sending the spot to has a Samsung

    When you receive it on your Samsung in order to open it

    you have to save it as a contact. Then, you need to open the contact,view the contact’s information

    and select the url saved with the contact. Afterward the contact will automatically load up the exact location of the distressed signal.

    NOTE: You can only do this Apple to Apple or Apple to Samsung.

  14. @Sefic, given the emotional trauma everyone feels about Randy, you might want to rephase your question so that it shows empathy. Being a caring person is different than performing investigation and analyzing facts. Not everyone is trained in investigation techniques. Its frustrating trying to analyze photos when they are taken of individuals and not the actual scene so that us behind the computer/phone can see and analyze them and help te best we can. I understand that we need to see the challenges associated with searching and that it’s not an easy task. Its emotionally and physically draining.

  15. Mike, with all due respect, I would not want to depend on using a cell phone where there is zero service to provide instantaneous information of my GPS precise coordinates to a loved one. I may be wrong, and I intend to try this out with a cell phone where there is zero coverage (as my curiosity is up), but it may be misleading to rely on a cell to get you located when your in a real pinch within a region that is remote without coverage.

    Below is an article comparing two top trackers – delorme vs. SPOT. Apparently delorme is much better, but a little more expensive:


    As I mentioned, I want to try this method out. I am just concerned that some might depend on something that is not as reliable. Thank you for your efforts and generous time spent looking. I know this must not be easy. You are appreciated.

    • “Mike, with all due respect, I would not want to depend on using a cell phone where there is zero service to provide instantaneous information of my GPS precise coordinates to a loved one. I may be wrong, and I intend to try this out with a cell phone where there is zero coverage (as my curiosity is up), but it may be misleading to rely on a cell to get you located when your in a real pinch within a region that is remote without coverage.”

      Yeah: what you said. 🙂 Satellite tracking is superior, though it may cost about $133 a year for the service. A SPOT device can often be used in a canyon, while a cellular telephone tracking device cannot. Also, the area north of Espanola does not have cellular telephone service for “prepaid wireless,” which many of the phone tracking devices rely on via “prepaid SIM.”

  16. Non taken . We used it to find our car while out with Randy . It is a bit tricky but it did lead us back to it. I would not use this as a First choice , the new spotters are the way to go . But if all else fails , this could help.

  17. Thanks Mike and all the others searching.
    There a lot of negative comments and I would like to share my two bits worth. The old saying ‘if you can’t say something nice don’t say anything.” The other is one I have been trying to instill in my grandchildren. They are part of a large family, 8 kids adopted from CPS, and yes most have problems being abused and drug parents. When some one says something bad about someone, a war starts. I tell them “If someone says something bad about you, it is their problem. If you let it bother you, then that’s your problem. Ignore the bad things said and done and be a bigger person and let it go.”
    May God Bless everyone, from those seraching, and those supporting the search with prayers and best wishes. May God grant peace to his family.
    Thanks to all suggesting emergency kits. One thing I haven’t seen mentioned are the light weight thermal blankets, a must have in winter.

  18. I just joined this group a few weeks ago so I don’t know any of you wonderful people posting and searching for your fellow treasure hunter. You are all such deeply caring individuals. I just relocated from Fort Collins, CO to Minnesota a few months ago, but if I was still down there I’d have been proud to join in the efforts in person. Sending best wishes for a safe successful trip in locating Randy!

  19. Looking at the TIFF file in PhotoShop and adjusting levels, the “blue object” appears to be a flat surface, possibly reflecting the sky or, alternatively, colored bluish. There seems to be a straight-ish shadow related to it on the left. It also seems to have a “torn” edge to the left, and the undergrowth appears to be partially obscuring its surface. Although there may be a little snow along the very bottom edge of the photo, I still don’t think that the “object” itself is snow. Unfortunately, it also doesn’t look like an article of clothing or part of a backpack.

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