Plans for Saturday…

January 28th, 2016



This Saturday (January 30th), we are planning to do another on the ground search for Randy.  The weather will turn on us next week, but this Saturday calls for sunny and clear skies, and warm temperatures.

We will meet at the Santa Fe Animal Shelter, again.  I will be there by 8 am, and hope to get the group out by 9.  The address is: 100 Caja Del Rio Rd, Santa Fe, NM 87507.

This time, we will focus on the area north and south of Diablo Canyon, close to the Rio Grande, but not focusing on the edge.  This is rough terrain, and is not your average gentle hike.  Aside from the muddy road in, it will require hiking miles of hills and canyons.

If you want to help, you can meet us there.  Bring your selves, drones, ATVs, and even your dogs, but be aware there is cactus everywhere.

Tomorrow, I will go to the San Idelfonso Pueblo, which owns most of the area we would like to search, and will make sure we have permission to access these areas.  If by some chance we don’t get permission, we can still search other areas in the Monteso Peak area, but these can be just as bad with the mud.

I will update everyone after I have spoken to someone in the tribe and have ensured we have access.

In addition to our search, I have heard there will be a crew rafting from Buckman to Cochiti, on Saturday.  The ice has been melting, and rumor has it that there is a clearing through there now.  Let’s wish them luck, and hope for them to have a safe trip.

Also, everyone wish Cynthia luck tomorrow.  I don’t envy her task, but I admire her heart for doing it.  And a big Thank You to Radcrad for promising to accompany her on her trip.  I think he is one of those stout-hearted men that Forrest once spoke of.  When she asked him to go with her, there wasn’t even a pause before he said yes.





125 thoughts on “Plans for Saturday…

    • One place no one has looked is Up river from the Put in. Please see if you can get a few people to drone the area from the put in up It makes logical sense that randy Might have packed his raft Up river to just cross the river to test the raft out. He may have planed to do the bigger trip later that’s why he did not take his map lunch or wallet. When I talked to the security guy on my way out of my search about where the whistle was heard He pointed Up above Randy’s car which was parked at the Put in. No body has searched this area. I learned it was windy enough to carry that raft down river and blow it up on shore. How we wish Leo could talk. Can you put this search together there are a lot of thorns I would look for a clearing big enough to put in and just cross. I can’t find the Lady’s post about the whistle to confirm her location. If the security guard I talked to is right that area is important to search. Please TY Jeff Burch and Titan

      • There are big cats in that area so stick together and make noise. I know there is more I need to say but thank you guys for being there If I didn’t have to care for my mother which had a massive stroke 9 years ago and lost the left Side use of her body. I would be there with you. I hope you know I have nothing but love for you guys and gals. and Thank you Sasha after Viewing the drone footage There is no way I would attempt the journey down to the bottom to the raft without others I would of had to be more prepared for that event. Everything happens for a reason and the knowledge that its possible that Randy’s up river may be a blessing in the end. Thank you for making a good call Sasha with my search time. Jeff Burch and Titan

          • My understanding is that Julie described the noise as a distressed animal or possibly a whistle. The area she described being in was about a quarter mile south of where the car was, on or close to Soda trail and near the power lines. She obviously couldn’t identify exactly where the sound came from–only could describe where she was when it was heard. Has the area been closely searched by anyone?

            Jeff, you commented on the guard hearing a whistle–did he hear one too or were you referring to what Julie heard?

          • I just got off the phone with Bob Rodgers NM State SAR Resource Officer. He told me Julie could not pin point the noise and was not sure what it was or its direction. He feels they have enough evidence that Randy did in fact make it down river because of the way the paddles were placed out next to the raft.

            I explained that a raft could be blown up against the side and flipped over and the paddles could land that way. It is just a thought that Randy may have put in UP River in calmer waters He did agree but he stated that it was a very low probability and the man hours should be used for down River..

            Fact that it was very windy on the 5th and 6th learned from the water company employee that was there those days Yes Leo would of had to take the ride by himself. That must of been a heck of a ride if he had to fair it by himself.

            So my conclusion is the professionals have it figured Right. Randy did make it down river. I thought he did when I first saw the raft as well. But If Like Forrest said, We may need to start looking for where we don’t think he is. Up River may be a good starting point for that search.

            I felt it necessary to contact MR Rogers For this Important Information its been driving on me when that man pointed Up river. Bob Rodgers is doing his best. He is actually viewing the Drone Video Footage as we speak. Thank You for all you do Bob and the NMSAR you are appreciated by all.

        • Thanks for the update Jeff about your conversation with Bob at SAR. My only comment is the following: The area Julie said she heard the noise is South of the Car. It seems to me that all of the area between the raft and the car is a possible place for Randy to be whether one believes he went down river on the raft or not. Even if he went to where the raft was located, he could have gotten separated from Leo after heading on foot back to the car. Leo then wandered back to the raft and waited and Randy proceeded toward his car and ran into trouble. I’m still concerned by the report from Julie that steel traps are set around where she was hiking when she heard the noise.

          Sorry if all of this has already been covered. Thanks for all of your efforts. And Titan too!

      • Jeff Burch when the guard pointed bib he seem to be pointing towards the west side of the river or as if it could have been on the west east side? I. Ask because there’s a trail on the west that gos down there but I don’t know hard it is to go down and I he didn’t know about it he could have tryed to go up there where its hard to climb and fell. There’s also a lot of caves from what I understand below the town of white rock that he could have went in to.

        • When I asked him about the whistle he pointed north east Up river on the same side where Randy’s car was parked. We were walking out at the end of our search or we might of went that way to start with. But I knew the marks on the map Julie had placed and lay of the land fit down river so that’s where we searched and took all the photos. Still that being said If I had a raft I would of went up river to find a calmer place to launch my raft. That’s just me and the way I saw the water flow. It picks up right at the put in.

      • @Sacha, “I will work on including that in our plans. If we have enough voluntees, it will be included in the plans.”

        Thank you, but both areas will be extremely risky to search; good luck.

          • @Sacha, “Can you email me a map with your locations marked? I will have it blown up so I can give it to someone to look at”

            I will do so ASAP. If Randy had a decent topographic map, he might think the two routes were a way to get from the river to to the paved roads north; one is not (there are dry water falls in the way that a human cannot climb around), and one is. The route to the spring is long, with steep areas where a person can fall.

            As it is, given Leo’s location when found, I suspect Randy didn’t get as far north up-river as Chaquehui. Map and GPS to follow.

  1. Just returned from Cochiti Lake. Ice nearly all melted. Do not know re Rio from Buckman to Lake. Observed a kayaker doing a thorough search of the Lake. Watched two people in the area, one with fishing pole, another with black dog. Did not ask if they were searching, as some searchers may prefer to remain anonymous. Walked area of tribal lands (with PERMISSION). Would like to walk long arroyo that runs south side of Pueblo owned Cochiti Golf Course from road directly to Rio but that would require special permission. Don’t know if anyone has been able to thoroughly view this from the air. IF Randy floated down stream, IF he know of this easy route to a road, and IF he had the strength to pull himself out of the water, this would be another route to access civilization. IF he had the strength to get all the way to the road. Not sure how visible the length of the arroyo is from the air, as it winds and curves and must have a few overhangs.

  2. I sure wish I could help. I feel so useless. I have a day job and won’t have any vacation time until late March. Two weekends ago, when this all started, we lost a family member. Dealing with hospice, the death, arrangements, and the funeral itself, took a lot out of my wife and I. Then the expenses drained our funds. This last weekend I became very sick. Spent most all of Monday in the ER and the remainder of the week in bed. I am starting to recover but my wife is now showing signs of what I just went through. Looks like another rough weekend for us.

    All we can do is hope an pray that you all stay safe… and a big

    Thank You!!!!

    for everyone who is able to get out and help… our hearts are with you… even if WE can’t be. I’m pretty sure the rest of the TTOTC people who can’t be there either, feel the same way.


    • Condolences to you and your family. Hope everyone starts feeling better soon, too. What you’ve said will be helpful to the searchers. I’m sure just knowing they have our support means a lot to them.

  3. Awesome. Yall are the best. Thank u for putting your time into finding Randy. Lord knows yall have done your best. The searchers do have experience thanks to Forrest. 🙂

  4. Hello searchers.
    You all are amazing.
    I’ve been looking forward to Saturday to get out and help. Last weekend i had every intention to get my drone in the air but couldn’t get permission at Bandelier or Cochiti.
    My plan was to search the lake and inlet Saturday, as far up as possible, with my drone. Access is limited. If anyone feels the drone could be better used somewhere else I will go wherever needed. I also have a dozen 2-way radios (not professional grade but means of communication for close searching) for searchers to use. Just Let me know.

  5. A blessing for Saturday’s searchers:

    May your eye sight be as keen as an eagle’s;
    May your foot steps be as sure as a mountain goat’s;
    May you remain as safe as a babe in her mother’s arms;
    May your seeking be successful;
    May you bring my best friend home.

  6. Where Oh where did he travel to! Leo went with him from the raft. What really happened from here and on. My heavy heart goes to the family in this time. I can only guess he is near the raft, and on a trail from this point on. Again my prayers and thoughts to all the searches out looking for Randy.

  7. can someone try to look at this more closely, I spotted it on right about 06:29 – 06:43 I had to change the angle but if you zoom in below shadow or cave looking area on cliff it looks like someone either standing or laying on the snow… middle right side of video on patch of snow the first thing I spotted looks like legs ( black pants) and then once zoomed the rest of what may be someone? Please zoom and look carefully.

  8. Also has anyone determined if the two people who appear on the screen on at 01:05 are part of the search team or?? One of them appears to run behind a shrub or bush at first and the other is a little below and to the left of him standing and watching.

    • Nothing nefarious ultra-wide FOV shows search party members. I wish every clip included operators for reference… Like the message in the side view mirror used to say – “objects may appear closer than they are”.

  9. Good luck Cynthia & Roger. You are exceptional folks. Stay safe. And Sacha, good luck to your group on Saturday. Thanks for your amazing effort.

  10. Regarding Randy’s location:

    Expanding on something I’ve posted before:

    One thing amongst the information stood out to me. This was the orientation of the markings Randy has put on his map. I could be wrong but this may be significant.

    From his map it looks like his solution could be based on a 45 degree line (NW to SE) that cuts through the central ‘X’ on his map – the centre of the cluster of X’s. This line passes close to all his markings on the map including his own ‘NW’ marking.

    As this line represents a narrow search area I think it would be worthwhile to fly along this line heading further SE beyond Randy’s existing ‘X’ markings.

    My guess would be that previously he searched the area of his X’s approaching them across land then at a later date tried approaching them from the river to be more accurate by following the instructions literally after ‘putting in’ his boat ‘below the HOB’. He may have carried on past his previous ‘X’ locations trying to find the chest on this line.

    It’s most probable that if the dog was on the east side of the river then Randy will be on the east side.

    Stephanie has put up a link to the map showing the 45 degree line I’ve drawn passing through the ‘X’ in the centre of the cluster of ‘X’s..…Knight.jpg

      • As we look at Randy’s map, are the three Xes supposed to be vantage points/scouting points that he did on previous outings?

        It sure looks to me like the dotted line was his exit route.

        As I posted over on the facts only thread, I’m not convinced Randy tried to “get out” – as I am really starting to wonder if he had an accident of some kind “going towards” his destination that fateful day.

        I’ve got to beleive that he had some way to make fire, even on a day trip, and there was no evidence of any fire at the sand bar if he spent a night there.

        So, where was he headed and did he make it there? Do we know, or are we able to ascertain that from the evidence left behind? If we cannot, then we’re no better off than doing grid searches to find him.

        • @uken2it, “What about lining it up with the light x? It may be a new x he was following up on.”

          Unfortunately, what Randy was thinking when searching for the treasure does not help in finding him; Randy obviously thought Rito de los Frijoles was “Home of Brown,” and Randy applied confirmation bias to support that belief (looking for anything and everything that might be “the blaze”). Randy did make it to Frijoles Falls in the past, and got images of the falls. I am at a loss to imagine why Randy thought he needed to search the falls again, via raft, since he had already searched the area.

          My guess is that Randy stood on the east mesa edge, roughly where he (presumably) placed his “X” marks, and he sighted on the most obvious landmark above Frijoles: Corral Hill. He then sighted along the line of sight (“look quickly down”) to see what possible hiding places he could see from above. He then got the raft and made yet another trip to Frijoles.

          If my guess is correct, this is what he saw:

          It does not help at all, if Randy and Leo was heading back to their car.

  11. I think it’s possible that after Randy first identified his “HOB”, he then saw his “Blaze” as the 2000 fire at Cerro Grande. He puts them on the map and sees the poem as instructions (no place for the meek, heavy loads, waters high as in “high above the water”) to go up the east side to the “X’s” and look “quickly down” in the direction of the “Blaze” which he had found. I think that’s why the notation “NW” is in the upper left corner. “Look NW”. From what I understand, he went via car to the area marked by these “X’s” in December (when the temp’s were in the 40’s and 50’s) and took photo’s, mainly of the canyons across the river. Completely logical recon run if he thought that looking quickly down in the direction of his blaze would yield the treasure. I first thought that he saw something so compelling below his vantage point that he decided to make this January trip. Now I think I may have been wrong, he may not have seen anything and he may have seen this as an indication of where the treasure was. Here’s why: his lower 2 dark “X’s” appear to give good view into Frijoles from two different angles, his top “X” lines up with the entrance to Chaquehui. I think he was convinced that looking down into one of these two canyons would somehow reveal the treasure location. Looking at the topo maps, it doesn’t appear that he could get to his top “X”. Many of us know how different terrain is on the ground versus our comfortable maps. We also know how set we can be in our solve. The dotted line in this case might represent his notation that he could not get past this point to see across the river into Chaquehui. Being a determined searcher, he needed to check it out. The mysterious circled ”E” means something to Randy, “enter”, “eyes on ground”, I don’t know, But he is so convinced that he embarks on his rafting trip to check out Chaquehui Canyon. If I am right, his raft is right where he intended it to be. Given the tear in the raft, I think once there he would first try to see if the raft would hold air, that’s why the pump bellows would be in the extended position. To me that’s a key question. If the raft would still function, he would have planned to wade across the river in whatever path appeared to get him to Chaquehui, and subsequently encountered a problem. If the raft was no longer usable however, he would almost certainly have abandoned his search. Maybe he would then try to walk North along the river (most likely would do this if he had seen even one other person on river that day), but if not, since he had made the recon trip a month earlier he may have thought his best chance was to try to gain access up the East side and look for a light or any sign of civilization he could try to get to. He didn’t have any good choices at this point. If the raft appeared usable when Leo was found, my opinion is he would have continued to try to get to Chaquehui and encountered a problem between these two points. If not, then I think he stayed on the East side. Like many, I am frustrated that I am so far away and can do nothing to really help. God bless all the searchers.

        • Ants,

          A 4×4 is not necessary, but if your vehicle won’t handle muddy dirt roads, then we will leave it parked at the park next to the shelter. The shelter is at the head of the access road we will take to access the Monteso Peak area.

          Those with cars that stay behind will team up with others that have a vehicle with better capabilities.

          We had to have one person towed out this week. The terrible roads wrecked the axle on his trailer, and then all the pulling blew up his transmission on his truck. And, he had a 4×4 truck, so we are using an abundance of caution.

          Regardless of what kind of vehicle you have, everyone will match up with a partner. No one goes out there alone, and everybody goes home at the end of the day.

  12. Thank you Cynthia and Sacha. As usual you both have it under control. Is the State or the Naat. Park Service going to check the lake? If so when would they schedule that now that it is thawed out.
    God Bless you All and stay safe.

  13. Here are screen captures from the drone video “CursingMouse” referred to last night. They come from https://vimeo.com153128514. At about 6 min 30 seconds in, about 1/8th of the way in from right side, midway between top and bottom. I think this needs to be seriously looked into by someone out there.


      • I see the shape of a human in black waders (somewhat) lying sprawled out on the top of a rock, but its hard to say about “size relation”. From the video it seems that spot is the size maybe a basketball, but when you crop the photos, it “appears” to be a human shape wearing (possibly) black waders(wetsuit type) with a utility(fanny pack) attached at the waste. The black would’ve melted the snow off of it’s material to give that look. I’d say it’s definitely worth a closer look. Could be the mind playing tricks, or it could be something legit.

        • I see waders and maybe a mans head mostly covered with snow . It could just be shadows on rocks, but it should be checked out.

      • Go to the “Drone Footage Links” on this site. select 153128514. Forward to 6 min 30 sec. pause there. Look exactly 1/2 way down between top and bottom, and 1/2 way between the edge of the sunlit rocks and the right edge of video. You are looking down below. You should see what I am talking about in a patch of snow. Yes, maybe it’s just rocks, in fact it probably is, but it looks like it might be a human figure with head oriented to the left and legs extended.

        • if you are using windows, locate and open the “Snipping Tool” program, which will allow you to cut and save the area on the screen so you can open it as a jpg and view it much larger. Note: when you watch the video, click on the HD button in the bottom right of the player and make it 1080P so you will get the best image when you “snip it”.

      • Those pictures are pretty compelling. Do we know where this drone was located?
        It would be nice to get a clearer image.

      • thank you for getting the link to work for the pics. i notified and sent copies to FF and Dal earlier today and I believe this will be followed up on shortly. Again, maybe or probably rocks, but it definitely looks to be worth a closer exam.

          • Thanks Jake I really do appreciate that, but it’s not about me.

            Someone mentioned a jacket in the car, I looked at the pics from and the only possible jackets in the car were a camo jacket in the back seat, and possibly a bright blue one on the front passenger floor.

            Something was bothering me about the jacket though. It didn’t look heavy or warm enough for that weather. Again I am a city boy, with no experience out there. But, that made me check the Los Alamos weather for Dec 24/25 when we know he was there and wore that white jacket. The high temp was 30 degrees on the 24th and 41 degrees on the 25th. The high temp on Jan 4 was 37 and on the 5th it was 33 degrees, virtually the same. I guess the jacket may have been adequate to him.

          • If you look at car pic #3 you can see a jacket stuffed between the dog bed and the glove box. I don’t know? What do you think?

          • twistedankle,
            I think what needs to be done is get the drone operator back to that spot & get a closer look without BOTG because the terrain appears to be out. But maybe even before that we need to know X-W-Z axis to know what angle we are actually looking at. Remember, what we see as snow if be, will be gone by now so it makes it all the more difficult. Drone in air again before BOTG W/more directional view angle of drone camera would be nice.

          • David Ripple was also one of the first if not the first on the scene with his drone to capture vid. I don’t know who shot this vid but I would try to find out & see if they can go to same area again.

          • re poss jacket in front: yes it is possibly that jacket from the Dec 24 selfie. I don’t think so though. It appears too bulky and the blue portion throws me. I am thinking it’s a heavier jacket, blue, with a gray/silvery lining. Perhaps brought just in case he deemed it too cold. I know I sound like a treasure searcher fixated on their solve, but I am trying not to be. As I typed this I realized that the one in the car appears I believe to be a zippered jacket, the Dec 24 one is a pullover.

          • I’m not sure how you found this image looking at a video, but could eye.
            I hope they check this out today.
            So very compelling. Unfortunately. ..

  14. All maps are not created equal, folks.

    I was looking at one map, and some of the area I wanted to search this weekend showed that it was part of tribal land.

    I looked at a more detailed map, and more recent, and I show that the boundary isn’t even close to where we want to look. That is actually great news. We don’t need any special permission for this weekend’s search. But, it shows how information can differ greatly between sources.

    I will warn you, the areas we need to look at are not flat. There will be some moderate hiking involved, so come prepared.

    Also, wear layers. It will be cold in the morning, but will warm up in the afternoon.

    Thank you so much to everyone sending good wishes, maps, pictures, and information. We never know when we might get that one piece of information that leads to Randy’s location.

    • Good Luck Sacha stay safe… BTW you are a woman of many talents… Your interview on Inside Edition last night was really good… May you all find that one piece soon…

    • I was speaking with Bob from NM SAR and he gave me a name of a person he would like searchers to contact in order to search any land. I’ll forward that to you Sacha.

  15. Could somebody let Sachs know that I am running a little slow like Cecil and that I will find her out there by Montoso or above Randy’s raft. I will get as close as I can. Maybe she can call me.

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