The Nine Clues…Part Sixty Eight


This page is now closed to new comments. To continue the discussion please go to the latest Nine Clues page.

This is the place to discuss the nine clues…For instance:
What are the nine clues…
Is the first clue “Begin it where warm waters halt” ?

787 thoughts on “The Nine Clues…Part Sixty Eight

  1. That’s a good quesrion. First person I ever read it to thought it was “hint of riches new and old”.

      • Thank you pdenver! I had never looked at that before. So do we start our search at the crime scene and follow the trail from there, I wonder?

        Sorry if this has been discussed before, I didn’t start following discussion threads until recently.

        • You’re welcome, WY Girl. Dal’s blog has a lot of information that may be helpful to you. Read the poem over and over, and if you have The Thrill of the Chase book, read that. Also, have a good map, and/or Google Earth. Searchers have different opinions of where to start. Enjoy the thrill of the chase!

          • PDenver you are one of the kindest people on the blog! Always helpful and courteous.

            I’ve been in the chase since 2013 just never followed discussion threads. I utilized the rest of the blog extensively but not the discussions. I believe this was to my detriment because the discussions on here spark new trains of thought or make me remember things I had forgotten about. Like your link above sparked a completely new train of thought regarding the ball of string story. So thanks again! 🙂

          • Thank you for your kind words, WY Girl. I greatly appreciate it. Searchers have had great discussions in the past. Have to be careful with all of the information. One may end up in a tangled ball of thread. 🙂

    • Another good question but since Fenn said they are in sequential order, I imagine a clue is something to look for or do. A place or an action. But for instance, is “heavy loads and high water” one clue or two.

      • Exactly Darren! With my current solution there were more than 9 actions I need to take but less than 9 points on a map. So it’s hard to figure out what constitutes a clue. If your starting point is a rock on a hill is that one clue or two. Is it go to that hill (1clue) and find the rock (1 clue) or go to the rock on that hill (1 clue).

        I haven’t really counted clues after my first BOTG because it was distracting but now that I have a solve that utilizes the whole poem and doesn’t leave out stanzas 1,5, or 6 I feel like I should be able to figure out what a clue is. I feel like it should be apparent with the correct solve.

  2. All,
    After reading the latest (now closed) Nine Clues section, I toss out the following suggestions:

    “…think about the nine clues and follow them in order.”
    IMO, this can be difficult because, IMO, each clue has a dual meaning, perhaps a literal meaning and a figurative meaning; so imagination is important.

    “When I wrote that poem I wasn’t playing any games. It’s straight forward.”


    “The blueprint is challenging so the treasure may be located by the one who can best adjust.”
    IMO, the actual first clue will not be known for sure until TC is found.
    “Have flashlight, will travel”

    • Groff, may I ask where you found this;

      “The blueprint is challenging so the treasure may be located by the one who can best adjust.”

      I find it interesting but cannot remember reading it before now.

    • Hi Geoff

      I’m as equally unqualified to give sound advice as any other treasure hunter on this site, given the status of undiscovered treasure chests to date, but will humbly utter three pieces of sound advice all the same..

      1) don’t believe any quotes that ‘locolobos’ won’t kindly verify

      2) don’t fall into anyone else’s rabbit-hole without first laying a return trail of inedible bread-crumbs

      2.3) don’t forget to take a very big sandwich or three (two for the many hungry squirrels)

      2.5) don’t drive anywhere near Las Vegas if you find lots of gold

      2.6) don’t tell Dal if you hike off-track (I think he quietly worries)

      2.9) don’t hesitate to inform me if there are any long-haul truck driving jobs available in Idaho

      2.95) don’t forget 2.9

      3) best of luck in your search mate

        • thanks mate ..but it’s just too late – as I’m already engaged to be discreetly married, in a quiet ceremony (in LasVegas), to a mysterious lady who shall never be named by me ever in this life-time, not even if I was water-boarded!

          (don’t worry Jeannie – I’ll never tell anyone!)

      • Hi Hobbit, we could make a bowl of that cheesey pimento stuff for the squirrels, they might like it. You could always carry a supply of it in your truck as you cruise Idaho. Haha! I replied to you back at the other odds & ends before the new one started. I would love to see you write a story about the chase, please? Ok?

        • Hi Jeannie

          I’m quietly confident that Dal would have a mildly severe brain-hernia, were I to present an honest rambling of my honest ramblings across the big bits of your honest country, esp. given the unenviable editing tasks involved.

          – but should he ask, I would happily comply

          otherwise I will seriously consider actually writing a 12 page novel of my journey, in the near future.

          (note to myself: remember to google definition of novel ..& learn how to actually write, in the near future)

          • Ok Mr. Hobbit, I understand. Thanks anyway. Now all I can think of is voxpops walking slow motion on the moon in a sea suit with Wilson and Audrey. See what you’ve done?! Ha!

          • Hi Windy, it was on one of the old scrapbooks, it’s something Forrest likes. It is good and we put hot peppers in it. I’ll go back and see if I can find it.

          • Hi Windy, I found it but I don’t know how to do the link thing, sooo…. go to the more info and musings part, then scroll way down to grilled cheese and pimento sandwich.part deux

  3. It’s my belief that clue 9 is almost impossible to find without cracking clue 8. Clue 8 is…

  4. Dal,

    Perhaps you could re-post the survey taken at Fennboree this year asking about the first two clues?

    ~ Wisconsin Mike

  5. Did not mean to dumb any one down or try to attack the thought before ours. Was just asking for thoughts. Will not do it again. The name was how the three of us felt. Foot in mouth again. The reading rainbow was not my friend in school. Good luck all.

  6. Reiteri posted: “Already”, has 3 syllables. Im intrigued by your comment Zaphod. Are you willing to expound further?”

    Good catch, Reiteri! I stand corrected. But I expect you’ll agree that the poem has an unusual word length distribution. And count up all those W’s: it’s quite the statistical anomaly. Yet most focus on interpretations of the various meanings of the words without acknowledging the strangeness of the short word lengths and other poem oddities.

    • It’s an interesting observation you made. I have an initial hypothesis about that but admittedly it’s without a lot of contemplation.

    • Not sure if this has been touched on b4, but I believe it’s odd that a capital “I” appears 9 times while also being the 9th letter of the alphabet.

      • That’s interesting Heston,
        I wonder what word is used the most.
        I think Jeremy P. or someone else compiled a list in Excel but can’t find it here.

      • ” I ” count is 5 by itself.
        If, I’ve, I’m, and If again, count 9 for all capital I usages.
        The other interesting part is none appear in stanzas 2 or 3.

        What are your thought B. ?

        • More curiosity??…but maybe meant to bring attention to the “I” or the “eyes”….

          • Eyes as in to look and gaze; examine, study, survey, observe, etc. are usages to both words. Which does indicate something other than just seeing the chest is needed to be done. But why would all the I-eyes be needed for that, when we have the ‘look’ and ‘gaze’ to imply the same.
            Now on the other side of the coin. Eyes are lenses. Is something we need to do is to look through something on site? something that puts our eyes into focus?

            I like to look at eye with a different thought in mind. It involves the two 1/2’s of the poem. Who or what is I in the first 1/2 to the I in the second. The first have seems to relate as one telling… then we hit the line… If you’ve been wise and found the blaze… it seems to shift gears here, and I becomes fenn telling why “he” must go.
            So to know what, where,when,why or how the blaze is or becomes or used, are we to see it from another perspective then just fenn’s?

            Explanation summery;
            stanza 1… I has gone. and keep the secret where.
            stanza 5… why fenn { I } must go, the answers he knows.

            My thought process has shifted some what. I’m not attempting to solve clues as much understand the poem better. Folks have solve / decipher the first two and possibly the first 4, and obviously [ the first two ] at the correct location and passing/went/walked by [missing] all the other clues and the chest… I’ll add in close proximity… as fenn has said within two hundred feet of the chest.

            This yells out fenn’s comment… “need to nail down the first clue” Physical place or not. No one seems to have that bad boy locked in place. How can searcher “decipher” the clues and not understand the significance of where they were?

            This is imo fenn’s fail safe of how someone will not stumble upon the chest… not even a searcher… unless they understand the poem / first clue completely.

            What’s Black and white and red all over?
            You can be holding that newspaper in your hand, but without knowing red is not a color and read is a different meaning, you’re blind to all the facts.

      • because he is the key. His name…

        Your post B. Heston shows another way to read the poem and translate it.

  7. JDA, you said:

    “The reason that I can say that it works is because (as I have posted several times) an obscure definition of in “the wood” tells the searcher to go to an exact geographical area in Wyoming. When you get there, physical or on a map or GE you will see something that you will know instantly is the correct wwwh.”

    If you’re searching where I think you are, say hi to them at the Stagecoach for me! I spent some considerable time in that area, and although it would seem logical to search there, I fear it may be something of a wild goose chase. It’s a great place to see some fabulous sights, though.

    Good luck!

    • voxpops

      congrats on your anomaly, mate ..although somewhat later than we all would’ve liked, given the high level entertainment that you generously provided with your swamp encounter.

      without fear of offending (being a simple Kiwi), I can only hope to wish to ask ..where you managed to find that full-body deep-sea diving wetsuit in the middle of the upper east of the great divide, at such high altitude?

      ..and did it feel like you were walking on the moon, but in slower motion?

      sorta strikes me as being as ironically impossible as rock-climbing in the Maldives..

      • Listen, if you want us suave and sophisticated fashionistas to start buying that New Zealand lamb and butter again, post-Brexit, you’re going to have to start getting with the latest couture. Walking on the moon? I felt like I was parading the Paris catwalks!

        And never mind the the fact it constantly threatened to float me helplessly into the Van Allen belt, I was actually more frightened of having some sub-aquatic beastie rip a hole out of the pants – those things cost over a grand to replace!

        As for the rest, if you have the connections… They don’t call me Vegas Voxpops for nothing.

        • voxpops

          It warms my heart indeed to know that the ex-brexit-Brits have diligently maintained their classical sense of humour, at least enough to go deep-sea swamp diving in the middle of the Rockies, esp. at such great risk of sub-aquatic species threatening to ruin your blue/yellow (& un-insured?) michelin-man suit.

          thankfully, you’ll all continue to enjoy supporting such a suave fashionista lifestyle, by consuming our NZ lamb, butter (& great wines) given the daunting alternative of feasting on chicken vindaloo’s, pints o’ lager & endless falafel combinations, for the rest of eternity.. (you’re welcome btw)

          and yes, I do vaguely remember a Wanted Poster with your name on it (upon my return visit to Las Vegas) although your photo looked a lot slimmer without the dive-suit.

          was great fun reading your submission

    • Big,
      “So I wrote a poem containing nine [ no ] clues that if followed precisely will lead to the end of my rainbow and the treasure.”

      What would /follow/ and /lead/ mean if we have no clues?

      • If the poem was converted to German, you woiuldnt need clues, because the poem would provide specific direction to the treasure. I’m not in this camp but do think it’s possible.

      • seeker I would like to ask you a question – if you don’t mind you can answer if not that’s ok too- I was just wondering what take it in the canyon down means or what this part of the poem is your understanding of what it is saying

        • Frank,
          That’s not an easy question for me or with a single answer. I can see it differently at different times.
          Example: If the poem somehow lead to the YSP to the grand canyon and the upper and lower falls… there are difficulties of “take it in” stairs that are many and would have to be traveled twice at one end. At the other end a difficult path to do the same. But if the poem lead me to say Hebgen lake area, the canyon or take it in could be an easier travel [ in many places in that area ]. as well as, what is a canyon describing in the poem… Is it a big gorge, a smaller valley?
          Of course that depends IF the poem is directional stomping method from clue to clue.

          I don’t think we need to traverse any canyon to be honest. I think it is a description of the water[s] only. It could also be a line of sight, to mean elevation in the correct location is need for some reason. { do I sound like I have back up plans and not stuck on anyone one concept? lol }

          As far as “what part of the poem” seems to imply what it’s saying about take it in or canyon. Again I’m not sure if I see any particular point the tells me anything… I think one needs the entire poem to see each meaning of the poem ~ if that makes sense. { think fenns baking a cake analogy}

          Directional stomping out clues “only” method, for me, has lead to force fitting clues to match an area and or what a clue must be.
          Some like to think the poem first has to tell what stated you must be in, the explain exactly on place for wwwh, the if there is no canyon [ or what they think a canyon must be ] they skip the place all together or force something to be a canyon. The at this time they must find a hoB, so again I see force fitting and not thinking or imagination to the process… This is a precognition way of thinking, that the poem must tell us which state first and automatically leads to force fitting.
          It also lacks the end result of… “what took me so longs?” I mean pretty must anywhere in the Rockies can be match to a stomping directional only method…and imo there is no~ I should have thought of this place all along…

          Here is an example of a non-directional thought.
          Canyon to imply a grave [ note; not so much a grave for where the chest lays in wait ] but a description of what a canyon is… shear sides and lower level… NFBTFTW to be the saying, one foot on the grave. Put in boB is the burial, HLAW the ceremonial covering with dirt and tears of sorrow above.
          So depending on how one can read the poem “Take it in” may not refer to the searchers “physical travel” [ again that is a precognition way of thinking that force fits what we want something to be, to what it might actually be ] but an understanding of the location being described.

          I didn’t answer your question well, sorry. But I am not so confident as other, on exactly how to read this poem the way fenn intended it to be read in his mind.

          • Sorry for the many “the” and other words lacking letter…I think I spilled one to many coffees on the key board… most should read “theN”

          • seeker thanks for your reply – I think that if we just stick to what I grew up with as to what is a canyon to keep it simple – a canyon to me is what you say being shear sides and lower level or a canyon is also just having mountains on each side of your travel – to me the poem has a lot to do with elevation . to me there are two canyons 1- seems to that the farther you travel north the higher the elevation and ill call it the high canyon – 2- in your line of travel there is also a lower canyon in elevation . so to me it says take it in the canyon down which to me it says take the lower canyon ( canyon down) that’s where you turn or take it in meant as a direction – that is just my opinion again thanks for your reply – frank

    • Hay Blue, It sounds like the chase has you down. Check out “Smiling Cow” Dollar General-the one with the red background. You should be smiling like that if you chose your name for the reason I believe you did, I think you’re halfway there! Keep on searching til the cows come home! 🙂

  8. The Nit and the Grit… what is a needed clue?

    “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 ”

    Not to rehash the useless clue debate saga.. we have been told of added clues or after the fact clues [ such as examples above ] Fenn calls “in the mountains N of SF” a “clue” ~ some consider ““So I wrote a poem containing nine {9} clues that if followed precisely will lead to the end of my rainbow and the treasure.” to be a “clue” and all the others… Idaho, Utah, Canada, outhouse, Graveyard, not associated with a structure etc. “clues”
    The told; All the information to find the treasure is in the poem, the book will ‘help’ with the clues, hints in the book are subtle etc. etc. How are we to be “certain beforehand” if everything seems to be a “clue”? It’s one thing to attempt to figure out what a clue refers to… it’s another to not know where or what clues actually are.

    Here is another comment that refers to “N of SF”

    “You tell us that we should find “where warm waters halt” before trying to solve any of the other clues. Imagining that we haven’t seen the rest of the poem, and all we have to go on is:
    a. “begin it where warm waters halt” and
    [[b. “somewhere in the mountains north of Santa Fe”]]
    Do you think that we can confidently determine the starting place for your treasure trail? ~ Steve
    No, if all you have to go on are those two clues you cannot proceed with confidence. Look at it this way. If you were making a cake and you left out a few ingredients, would you achieve your goal?”

    All the info… in the poem. Only requirement is to decipher the clues in the poem.
    You don’t need to read my book you need to decipher the clues in the poem, the book will help. I’ll add; [ useless clues vs. needed clues ]

    So I read Bigbluecows post, which seems to imply that he/she might be saying there are no clues. lol ok, sure.
    So my first thought went to this. If Mountains N. of SF is clue to fenn, if the intro line to the poem in the book could be a clue[s] and fenn states many “ignore” “don’t dwell enough” “need to nail down the first clue” without it ya might as well stay home. Fenn also stated he is surprised no one has mentioned an “important possibility” You have to ponder…
    Where is the first clue? Not in the field… where do we read it?

    • Wasn’t the statement about “important possibility” made before his comment that few are in tight focus to a word that is key? Maybe the “important possibility” is that there is a key word which will unlock the meaning of the poem. Maybe Mr. Fenn realized that the “important possibility” statement was too vague for us, so he clarified that statement by telling us there is a word that is key. Just my opinion and trying to help.

      • I’m not sure which was first JBL. I’ll need to check out dates… but get the feeling the word that is key was first.

      • I’m not sure when the “word that is key” comment was made, but I agree with Seeker that I think it was far earlier than the “important possibility” statement (which was on MW 6-Questions in 2015). I do not believe the word that is key and the “one important possibility related to the winning solve” are referring to the same thing. In my solution, the word that is key is the first clue and helps you precisely locate WWWH. The important possibility has to do with the blaze.

      • You are right. “Word that is key” was posted on Mysterious Writings – Six Questions Feb. 2014. “One important possibility” was posted on Mysterious Writings – Six Questions Feb. 2015. Well, we now know that the important possibility isn’t that there is a word that is key.

        • Good job guys… one more thing I can cross off my list of ‘when and why that was said’… either of you gents want to help with another list I have?
          pick up milk and bread
          Mow lawn
          change oil in tractor
          pick up dry cleaning

          Stop me any time ya see something ya like…

          • Hi Seeker.

            So many have discussed the “one word” that will allow the puzzle to be solved.

            I’ve also thought about the poem and the many words it contains, and have tried to figure out the “one word” that would be helpful.

            IMO – it is “blaze”.

            If you think about this, we are instructed to find a treasure at the end of a “map”.

            If you think about the “map” it is actually a “trail”. Another word for “trail” is “blaze”.

            FF states in the poem….”If you have been wise and found the blaze”…..which clearly states, “After you have found the path i took” (“blaze”), it is important.

            Now you may ask, what would the “blaze” actually be.

            I have my answer to this……it is a trial. An unmarked trail. A game trail (“no man-made trail” – ff).

            FF loves the wilderness, and more than likely, appreciated any and every trail he was on, made himself or came across (game trail) that would be helpful to his goal of hiding the chest.

            The blaze could be, but I highly doubt it, is a landmark or some sort of “marking” upon the landscape.

            Remember – to “blaze” a trail is to create one yourself. FF seemed to like to stay off the beaten path.

            Now what could the “blaze”actually be? This forum has produced many different ideas…..but it seems the most simplest, a trail, has been avoided. Is that too simple? FF has said on multiple occasions to “keep it simple”.

            Why would a red glare from the sun, pointed to a rock, actually be something special that FF would consider as a blaze….unless you truly had to be in the spot of Indulgence during a certain time and certain position to see it. It sounds just to complicated of a trek to be factual.

            Once more….I am in the camp that the “blaze” is a marked trail, but is actually a game trail. It meets all of FF’s thoughts and notions.


          • Tim,
            In a video fenn stated;
            “I’ve said things people think are clues.”
            So keep that in mind as I go along here.

            You said; “So many have discussed the “one word” that will allow the puzzle to be solved.”

            I’m not sure I agree that the ‘one word’ will ‘allow’ the puzzle to be solved. Important to help and understand but maybe, not truly necessary. I have to keep in mind what we knew of from the start when I read the after the fact comments etc. So that sounds like to me, without that ‘one word’ don’t bother trying the poem can’t be solve. I have a hard time thinking that way.

            Just like the flashlight comment… I don’t think that is a hint or a clue. I think fenn answered it for a common sense reminder and used the Q&A. No special anything needed… but take a flashlight, it’s always handy to have.

            Could the word Blaze kick start an understanding… sure. And great arguments for almost every 166 words in the poem have been presented and tons of words from the 147 pages of the book, and still many after the fact words as well… my head hurts.

            But just like the ‘map’. fenn suggested this as a good tool, even suggesting google earth as the same. Are they truly needed and a must have to solve the poem? or was this way of fenn saying… forget all the “over complicating” things like latin, and bible verses and codes etc.

            What I see happening many many times, and I’m sure you have noticed as well… when fenn speaks in any venue, there is a major spike in everyone solve.
            Fenn said a map is a must if you don’t use one you can solve it.
            fenn said bring a flashlight and if you don’t you can never find the chest.
            Fenn also said no need to dig up a grave… well, I’m glad he told me that… I almost fired up the backhoe to head westward. even bring my 10 year nephew with a shovel to finish up around the edges… how embarrassing that would have been.

            So I don’t think, personally, that everything fenn says is a clue or hint or even guidance for a “solve”, but mainly simple advice and for thought.

            The animal trail sounds ok at first… using the none human trail comment. But I have hunted for many years [ no longer do] I was the type of hunter that tracked my game throughout the year, in amny areas, to study habits, trails, food supplies, water holes, etc. [ personal note; I can’t stand trophy hunters, I hunted for food supplement ] in my experience… game hardly travels the same path all year long or even at any given point of a year consistently, so game trails can over grow relativity quickly .
            But if you talking very large herd migration… then I can agree… but for how long will that be around? Even that type of migration trails have change simple because of human interference in one form or another… development, tourism, over-hunting etc.

            Am I positive in anything I just said Tim. Not truly, but logic tells me, not likely, in most of what I just stated.

            Dang my post are getting long… I need to go on a diet.

          • Hey Seeker…thanks for the response and candid insight. Good stuff to keep in mind.

            Also remember, anything and everything I post is still only speculation at best, because I haven’t pulled the chest from its resting spot.

            With saying that, I do believe my team of three persons have uncovered some very pertinent info that could change this hunt dramatically.

            How relative is this detail…..relevant.

            Have I investigated the details further? No, that is why I have been silent.

            Searching in Montana, 1100 miles away from NM, is costly. There may be another trip in the stars for 2017…..after a trip to SD for SDCC 2017.


            But my point is, yes I agree that not everything FF says, said or will say is helpful….because he does like to twist things into something they are not….but there are things he says, that can be useful. Even in just the way he says it.

            As in a recent question and answer session he did in 2014….I think I pulled this from Jenny’s Mysterious awritings site….

            If I read this correctly, he is saying you only need the book to solve….and you won’t need any of his other books he has written. Does this mean that a map is not needed? No, I think a map clarifies the poem.

            Question posted 6/27/2014:

            Is any specialized knowledge required to find the treasure? For instance, something learned during your time in the military, or from a lifetime of fly fishing? Or do you really expect any ordinary average person without your background to be able to correctly interpret the clues in the poem? ~mdavis19

            No specialized knowledge is required mdavis19, and I have no expectations. My Thrill of the Chase book is enough to lead an average person to the treasure.f

            Is it? Or is what F saying something altogether different to throw off the seeker?

            We all need to take our time….be cautious in our approach, and keep it simple.


          • To keep with my last post….here was another interesting response associated to the “blaze”… me fair thinking in the way I have about the blaze.

            This is another interesting response that is quite direct in some ways….

            Note his response of this….”searchers should review the rules about being safe in the mountains.”

            My take…..To know what trails are and how to read them is very important to keeping safe while in the forest.

            Question posted 5/28/2014:

            Is the Blaze one single object? ~ Scout Around

            In a word – Yes

            I have received a few hundred emails from searchers who are sure they know what the blaze is. Ideas range from a mark on a tree, a rock, a sign, a fire, the side of a bluff, a waterfall, a spot on the head of a horse, a rainbow, and even a live owl that flew away when it was approached.

            As a side note: with summer on the close horizon, searchers should review the rules about being safe in the mountains. f

            Notice FF never really admits to the blaze being something, but mentions many things people have said to him.

            IMO – this could be an indicator that NONE of those things are the “blaze”, thus we are able to deduct some things from the “intangible” list we all are keeping – of what it is not.

            Again my point being, FF says many things that have plenty of meaning, but also intertwined some “menusha” (sp.) into the mix, to detour us.

            IMO – FF is making a direct reference to understanding EXISTING trails to keep one safe. He recommends the use of the trail system.

            I’ve said this before, we need to think and then act like an 80 yr old man….if we do that…we bring ourselves closer to the chest.

          • Tim;

            I think that you have to couple your quote with this one: “Q: Are there clues in the TTOTC book? “Yes, because the poem is in the book.”

            Now we are back to the Poem, the book, and a good map. JDA

          • Hey JDA!

            Not really. We can stipulate that the book, which contains a map and the poem, is still within FF’s parameters. Now, if we couple “a good map” into the mix, then we are now at the book and another map only.


            Perception my dear friend….it is all about perception.

            ….and to the poster who suggested to separate the “fishing excursion” from the treasure map….now that was new and interesting. Not that I could figure out that, it is an interesting take on the poem.

            Cheers and good luck!

          • Tim,

            I don’t know what you know as far as relevant goes. But the Q&A with Davis, seems clear. No special knowledge and he has no expectations that the average Joe would have “his” knowledge.

            While we all try and get into fenn’s head. The information we have is only what he gave us, not what he knows.

            “Or do you really “expect” any ordinary average person without your background to be able to correctly interpret the clues in the poem?”

            I take this as fenn has said in two other comments;
            ~The book has the information to help the average Joe [ but not absolute or no expectations it will, the info is just there as helpful to all. ]
            However, ~ everyone has the same opportunity. [To mean we all have the same information. What we do with it is out of his hands. So again, no expectation of fenns part.]

            lol… I mean, just look at some of my thoughts compared to others thoughts. And most of those folks are way above my average.
            We all have the same information, and still no real consensus of what the first clue is or even where it is in the poem.

            Maybe it just me, thinking too logical.

          • Happy Friday Seeker!

            Yep…FF is a clever one….and we all have what is available.

            Okay….I can handle this. Let’s move forward with what we have, knowing that somewhere in that mix is the answer. Remember – it is difficult, not impossible, thus it is solvable.

            I’m in your camp in many ways – “below average or average” at anything to do with treasure hunting. Shoot, I don’t even own a metal detector, so all of this is just poking at, “Tim, how well can you decipher the cryptic?”

            Personally, I think I am pretty smart at things like that, and my “good luck” trait…..I gotta be honest….it is much higher than most people I have come in contact with. So I told myself, “Why not you be the one!?”

            Body language and what people say, have always been helpful indicators for me to “learn the book on people”. And it really doesn’t matter on what they say, what they say they do, or anything…..but it does have to do with how they say it, why they say it, and what are they doing when they say it.

            FF has been clever to conceal many of these instances, but I’ve “heard” and “seen” him slip ever so often. He knows it….he is only human. He just hopes that someone didn’t catch him doing or saying the “slip”.

            This is where we have to delve into the words spoken. What do they mean to FF? How did he come to use the certain terms he did? He is an adventurous guy, so we know that some of his words are related to his past experiences, actions and possible what he did say.

            I think you can see where I am heading with all of this.

            Anyhow….my speculation is just that, but the logic is there.

            You wrote:
            “We all have the same information, and still no real consensus of what the first clue is or even where it is in the poem.
            Maybe it just me, thinking too logical.”
            – I think I am now convinced the first clue is “at the edge of civilization”, because it is “generic”, “vague”, and can include millions of places. FF wanted it to be difficult, one just needs to utilize the book to see this is a fact. All of his stories are straightforward and simple, but some of the details are actually missing. Key adventures seem also be missing (FF – “I want to die where the chest is” (paraphrased). But if you move past the words, and try to understand the meaning of the words, you realize that FF either did two things….one – mention the location of the chest in the book, without “really mentioning” that he placed it there…..or the location is based upon the areas he DOES use in his stories, thus not mentioning it, nor actually revealing the location, but revealing enough information to get the seeker active in the search.

            – to solve this, logic will be needed, but a skewed type of logic in some ways. the cleverness and “perception” of FF is the reason why logic is not the straight forward way to go, but to utilize it in your twisted mentality of the solve.

            “Oh, that is what that meant!!” is what we all will be saying when this ends.



          • No argument with that line of logic – Happy hunting with your book and a Good Map – It works for me JDA

          • Tim,
            You’re already way ahead of me.
            If it wasn’t for bad luck, I’d have no luck at all.
            I can’t agree or disagree the location of anything is in the book or not. I can see stories imply as such and not actually revealing exact.
            So lets go with that… I still have to understand what it is about the first clue, apparently imo, no one has nailed down. Even when the clue was deciphered and someone was at the correct location in search mode.
            If you can show me in the book that answer, I’ll help fund your trip.

          • To answer WWWH, I have…”edge of civilization”.

            It fits with the person’s of ff.

            Now exactly where?

            That my friend is my secret.

            I do have a viable starting point, and I do think f2f had referenced that some people have deciphered the first two clues. I think I am one of those individuals.

            Why? What gives me that notion….I found some indirect information that involves ff’s family, that has not been discussed….anywhere that I have seen.

            How is it relevant? Forest Benn was there. His family was there. He knows the region where this place is….and probably knows it very well…..from the onformationalready revealed.

            Another point of interest on this region, is that I also found an anomolous feature/”marking” that makes me further investigate it. This was found within close proximity of WWWH.

            Is it “the” path that one needs to take? E entually I will find out myself, but for now…it stays under wraps.


            P.S. I can be bought!!!!…..*smiles*….to me…everything is for sale, if the price is right!!


          • Oh yeah….what I found out…I don’t recall reading it in the book, though it may have a reference to it in the chapter that tells about there trips to YNP.

            I’ve only read the book once, but have access to it periodically through one of my team members.

            One other thing about TTOTC, is that there is only one picture in the whole book that has to do with water, but is not labeled of where it is at. It is labeled “secret fishing home”.

            IMO….this also follows along with f2f staring that others have been there, just didnt know that a treasure was there. Fishing holes are probably plentiful in the Rockies, but we know of at least one that is secret to ff…..the one he does list in the book.

            Could this be the resting place of the chest…..seems to me….things are pointing in that direction.

        • Hi JBL, hope you’re feeling better than you were last month mate.

          “a word that is key” is a subject that I’d like to attempt to throw a coin into Trevi’s Fountain over, ( ..but will likely still miss completely, even were I standing directly within it, knowing my luck)

          So, what if the key word is “quickly” and the important possibility is (why we should) “tarry scant”?

          It strikes me as being equally illogical to (be required to) look quickly down, as it does to linger briefly at your destination (as if there is some implied danger perhaps?)

          ..yet knowing it was hidden by a guy with astute archeological pre-planning sensibility, displayed compassion and a knowledge of how safe an environment actually is, contrary to perceived assumption (my brother was convinced he’d have to navigate a one thousand rattlesnakes on our journey – but in reality, was more likely to have been struck on the head by a meteorite, if that makes comparative sense..?)

          so why look ‘quickly’ down, or ‘tarry scant’? (..unless ya have to desperately take a wee)

          has this subject been discussed before (loco?) ..or just whispered?

          btw, don’t tell Goofy that I asked such a serious question – he might faint.

          • Curious Hobbit;

            I agree with you. I think that there is a lot more to these words than most searchers give Forrest credit for.

            I firmly believe that “Look quickly down” tells you where to look, not how to look.

            As to Tarry Scant. Tarry = blackish in color like tar, and Scant = a flat stone much like a grave marker. Therefore Tarry Scant = a blackish colored flat stone. Look at pages 95 and 99 of TTOTC for examples.

            Just my opinion, but what do I know? NADA JDA

          • earthling JDA (aka NADA)

            not being native to your world, we should honestly expect you to know infinitely more than ‘us’ (apart from our anti-gravitational technologies) and humbly ask whether ‘tar’ is common to your naturally occurring geothermal areas, and if ‘scant’ rightfully interprets as ‘flat rock’ more than it does ‘to make small, narrow or meagre’?

            we have recently intercepted the intellectual writings of your fellow human (Merriam-Webster) but have yet to successfully calibrate our translator devices, sufficient enough to understand your complex language hieroglyphics – sorry about that.

            we will immediately beam you aboard our ship for further investigation.

            (just kidding JDA – am totally guilty of watching the latest Star Wars teaser!)

            yes, it seems bizarre that the utterances either side of “your quest to cease”, comprise of a suggested haste (& seldom discussed) and in such close proximity to the goal of finding the TC.

            These two phrases are most curious to us Vulcans (RIP Dr. Nimoy) and were we to discover your non-ferrous metals, we could logically re-power our hyper-drive systems, in order to return to our home planet – and 40lbs is just about enough to do the trick.

          • Hi CH, I’m sorry to say that I am still in bed since my trip. I still have hope that the docs will figure out what has been going on with me so that I can go out to search again. If not, I may ask my husband and brother go out and look for me. That would have to be next Spring though. They kind of think I’m nuts. Enough about that though.

            I think JD is right about the tarry scant being a stone with tar on it. I learned the term scant After I returned from my trip out west. So I think it reads that there is a stone with tar on it that you will marvel at because you will know you are right (confidence). I also read the word gaze to be look at closely. So, I have been wondering if there is another clue written in tar (black paint?) on the stone that gives direction and distance to the treasure. Is that the important thing that searchers haven’t considered? Something else I have also wondered is whether that stone inters the chest in a hole so that it is not buried, but hidden. No shovel needed, just gloves and a flashlight?

            I think that quickly down may mean immediately south. When I found my blaze, I didn’t look immediately south for a stone with tar. I was looking for a scant of pine trees (pine tar), but a scant of pine trees won’t be around for hundreds of years.

            Also, quickly is not the word that I think is key, but I can’t tell you what my key word is. My key word helps identify the blaze. I think that is why people have been so close but didn’t know it.

            I hope I haven’t given away so much that someone beats me to my solve. If so, please consider sharing an appropriate amount if I happen to be right. If my solve isn’t right, I hope I have helped someone in their solve.

            So now that I have opened up about my ideas, I have to put on my thick skin to handle the criticism. Please be gentle everybody. (Remember I’m sick in bed and this chase is all I have to keep me going. Otherwise I am stuck watching the news about this disgusting election.)

    • Seeker,
      My take on f’s answer to Steves question is that you can’t go with confidence until you have solved the whole poem, you need all of the ingredients to make the recipe work. That would also explain why people had the first two clues correct but went past the others. They had two ingredients correct but their other 7 ingredients were wrong.

      Do you believe when f mentioned the important possibility that he was referring to the starting place and/or the first part of the poem or that he could have been referring to a later clue?

      • WyGril
        I have no idea of what fenn meant with “important possibility” So I have been pondering that for some time.

        As to Steve’s question… my inquire wasn’t really about the question or confidence, but what is a “clue”?

        It relates to the Q&A of “no background information known of”
        So I have been wondering about what is “needed” to be known.
        Fenn in both comments I posted call “mountains N. of SF” a clue specially.
        In one comment stating; “And that ‘is’ a clue” Talk about straightforward!
        So here we are… “the poem contains 9 clues…”, and “all the information to find the chest is in the poem.” ” the book has subtle hints, not deliberately placed to aid the seeker…….Yet “in the mountains N.of SF” is a clue, and only found in the book.

        Is this how fenn directs the information to refer to as a clue in the poem? example: “as I have gone alone in there, and with my treasures bold…”
        To be a clue that is The “mountains N of SF”?

        Or are there more “needed” clues other than the clue in the poem?

        Or even… The clues are in the poem… the answers to those are in the book.

        Or is the first line in stanza 1 referring to the mountains and the book hint to the mountains, and we need to understand why “the mountains” are important?
        Not unlike the Q&A’s “there are many wwwh in the RM”s… you “over simplify the clues” to mean NOT a specific location of waters or Mountains … But maybe the Big Picture affect… maybe all the water[s] and all the mountains. In effect would give credence to NFBTFTW no specific distance, but a very large area.

        Don’t mind me… I’m just analyzing the heck out of the information given to us and thinking out-loud. I’m sure the poem is isn’t difficult.

      • WY Girl,
        If you only had a list of recipe ingredients but you didn’t know you were making a cake, would you know what to do with them or bake the correct thing? I give you flour and vegetable oil – do you make pancakes, muffins, or a cake? Without instructions or a goal, you are hamstrung.

        Steve’s question stipulates: “Imagine that we haven’t seen the rest of the poem, and all we have to go on is:
        a) “being it where warm waters halt” and
        b) “somewhere in the mountains north of Santa Fe”

        Now Look at this similar question:
        MW Q/A: “If in 500 years all a person has is the poem, and no back story: they don’t know “in the rocky mountains north of santa fe” or that there are 9 clues etc. Could a person reasonably just use the words in the poem and find your treasure?
        Thank you Nope
        Thank you Nope. Nope. f

        In both cases the searcher is left without any back-story and therefore no context as to what to do with the presented information. Why would you look for clues or treasure if you don’t know about the hidden cache of gold (you don’t know you’re baking a cake). You dno’t know how to approach the poem or the clues or what to do with either. IMO Forrest’ response has nothing to do with how many clues were solved correctly.

        Had a back-story been in play, so that the searchers in these two hypothetical situations had context, then I think Forrest’s response would have been necessarily different.

        • Tim (ZosoRocks)
          I read thru your post and you have turn the light bulb on again…..that would explain why the Blaze is so hard to find or identify…. I was walking on it!…. well maybe… I’ll now have to go back… thanks for the insight… Fenn fever is running high again..

  9. Hi Jake — in Nine Clues #67 you wrote, “Oh, got that wrong Zap,
    But what makes you think the title of his book would be a clue & subtle?
    Seems to me it’s like hitting a tack with a sledge hammer.”

    I wouldn’t say it’s a particularly helpful hint to have titled the book “Too Far to Walk”. After all, it’s just reiterating four of the words from the poem. But by doing so, he is telling us the words are significant, and yet people gloss over them, or perhaps worse try to assign a precise distance based on the TFTW book. The fact is, that poem line is not what people think it is (which I suppose is some vague indication of a distance to be traveled down the canyon). And those who assign an exact distance (e.g. 10 miles) are forgetting that that assumption does NOT come from either the poem or TTOTC. That poem line cannot be decoded unless you have the correct WWWH. But the nice part is that if you have a strong suspicion that you do have the correct WWWH and then you solve the mystery of “not far, but too far to walk”, you will then be absolutely certain you have the correct WWWH.

    • Hi again Zaphod. Can I ask, is your approach to the solution one which is accurately described as decoding? If so, how do you reconcile your approach with the statement FF has made seemingly discounting codes and ciphers as anything that would assist in finding the treasure.

    • Searchers…In my opinion, if we understand the reason why we PUT IN BELOW THE HOME OF BROWN DOWN IN THE CANYON BUT UPSTREAM FROM WHERE WARM WATER HALTS and why we BRAVE THE COLD WATER and PADDLE WITHOUT MEEKNESS and STOP PADDLING UP OUR little CREEK, then we will know the shortcut to the TC which is NFBTFTW from where we began. If we don’t understand then it will be a LONNNNNG walk to the TC. These ideas all seem to click conceptually before we even try to fit them to a specific location. Since this route may have been traveled twice in one afternoon, It seems logical that the TC may be less than a few miles from where we started and possibly less than a few thousand feet or even 500 feet due to further statements FF has provided since he gave the poem. Upon success, we will say why didn’t we consider this spot early on?

    • Reiteri: “decoding” would probably not be the right word since it has connotations of decryption, substitution, transposition, etc. This is not a cipher. It is a method of hiding information in plain sight (in the structure of the poem). This is why Forrest has said not to mess with the poem at all. If you alter anything, you could very well destroy one or more clues that he has baked into the poem.

        • Litter81: I’m fine with “decode” — it’s a perfectly good word. Unfortunately, if you use it here the FPP (Fenn Purist Police) will jump on you and tell you “There are no codes! There are no ciphers! You’re ignoring what Fenn said, you idiot!” I didn’t see any value in provoking that kind of response. (smiles)

          • Zaphod73491,

            Sure there is, just not in the context that most if not all have recognized, and thankfully so!

            “All of the information you need to find the treasure is in the poem”.f


          • LOL FPP… that’s a first, but I like it.

            IMO you’re both are correct in the manor you explained.
            I think why some jump on certain words [ I have at times, depending on the context of the conversion at the time ]

            A code, to me, has an external piece of information needed for decoding… Beale Paper hunt for example, or Andrew’s solve that use the L&C coded messaging style. decode, decipher, code, even interpretation ~ words that falls into the gray area and how it is meant.

            FPP lol, if that was mentioned before I must have missed it.
            Although it is funny how we label others when quoting fenn’s comments to give example of thoughts for or against a topic.

          • Aww, Y not ,zap? It exposes the FFPs arrogance…which I view as a weakness. Bahahaa!

  10. How many times did f.f. go to the site to hide the cache. If people were around did he turn around and attempt it again on a different day.

    • Marv;

      From the “Cheat Sheet” – found at the top of every thread comes the following: ” Q: Were both trips made on the same day/date? “I made two trips from my car to the hiding place and it was done in one afternoon.f”

      No one knows if people were around, or if he attempted it another day. All we know is what I just posted.

      Also, there is no need to post the same thing on different threads – Once is enough.

      Read the “Cheat Sheet”, and as many blog entries as you can. Listen to the videos – then – begin to formulate a strategy. Just a little advice from an old guy. JDA

    • MT Marv,
      If you don’t mind.
      You are going to need to rummage through many comment fenn has made since 2010. Only for the fact that you see the information and quotes firsthand, and not have others give you misinformation.
      The ones you’re talking about [ hiding the chest ~ anyone around ~ how many trips etc. ] has MANY comments, and not just one.

      fenn has been asked; if other were around… If he walked with the chest in the open or in a backpack… how far did he walk… did he take the chest first time to the hide or the gold, on his two trips etc.

      That way you can have a better idea yourself…

  11. Hey first time leaving comment not sure what I’m doing. Just wondering if anyone sees a reference to needing a battle cry in the poem?

    • Welcome Jasper –

      I do know that at first FF was going to name the treasure – Tarzan and he sure had a battle cry………

      So……….where are you seeing that referenced?

      • Just a thought I have had since I think he mentions crying in book. Then paddle rhymes with battle. Next line sounds like tears so battle cry possibility.

  12. No time to catch up on all the posts above, so taking a chance here… It might be wise to first read the poem first as a fishing excursion, separate from a treasure map. A mirror but not a mirror.

    I imagine stanza 1 & 2 in bare-bones prose as: I’m in that canyon again, heading for that great trout hole. What good luck! I see there’s hatch emerging at the far end of that meandering stream. Its too far on this walk-path, so I’ll take a short-cut across the meadow and enter below the hatchl From there I can walk & cast upstream into it.

    In prior posts I showed how DOWN & BROWN both relate to a hatch. In stanza 4, I think “look quickly down” refers to the hooked trout at your net. Separate the straight forward fishing poem from the treasure hunt map.

    Winter tidings to you all

  13. this to me are the steeps you take to get to the tc – from wwh you go to the canyon down where you take it in – not far but to far to walk is where youll find the home of brown from there you go to heavy loads and waters high that will lead you to the blaze from the blaze it takes you to in the wood to where your quest to cease imo

  14. Any un solved mystery has a ‘ important possibility’ that is not understood. And other important possibilities that don’t plan out, but they help to narrow down other possibilities….

    • One important possibility is that the poem is about fly fishing, another I p is that it’s not about fly fishing….. and so on and so forth, so he has not given us anything with his ‘ I P’ comment.

      • Maybe the poem is his note to himself of directions for his trip back home FROM hiding it now US going there… ending in writing the poem and we need to backtrack?

        • He does talk in TTOTC about wishing her spent more time with his mom when he was amassing his business and treasures, and how when he crashed he almost didn’t set off his radio and tried to navigate to the sea but wouldn’t be fair to his family….maybe the title of the poem is more like “my last trip home” where he left his tangible treasures behind for the last time for us to seek and found his way back to his personal best chest, Peggy and he the family. Two treasures. Our new is his old. Poem reads from him leaving OUR (new) chest and making his final journey to HIS.

          • MY BOOK. MINE.

            HIS POEM. HIS.

            HIS LAST TRIP HOME
            (from another place, somewhere, we all have yet to go…..if we’re supposed to follow his prints, were following them (his trail) BACK from where he is. Isn’t that what detectives do- to they trace you back to the scene from where you ARE?

  15. What i meant is, imagine you don’t know anything about a treasure or map, you know only that it is a poem about a fly fishing trip. Try to make sense of it as that…. any rough spots, awkward word choices, may open some mental passages for you. After years of looking at it like a map, i’t will be hard to relax into a fishing poem, but that may be the key to understanding Fenn. Conquer your anxiety. Let the poem come to you.

    • Hi OS2,

      One would still need a starting point, if what you say, that the poem is a “fishing trip”.

      Where would one begin the fishing trip? Accoding to the poem – “begin it WWWH”.

      Where is WWWH? unknown at this time.

      Where do I begin my fishing trip? unknown until you determine “WWWH” is at.


      Back to square one.


      • Do you need to know where Robert Frost was when he took the less traveled road? You’re still demanding map info, the subtleties won’t come kiss you on the lips at night until you kick that girl to the curb. Be tired and weak, close your lids and see.

        Just a suggestion. Good dreams, OS2.

        • PS….. I should have said Hi back to you, sorry for the impoliteness Tim.

          Also, wanted to mention that I think there is more than two stories going on in the poem. The camouflage of the map is much better than just a can of pepper before the hounds.

          • No worries OS2….we all have a lot on our minds, and endearments are minor compared to major details to a treasure map!!


            You wrote:
            “Do you need to know where Robert Frost was when he took the less traveled road?”

            – Of course not, but when reading it, you do IMAGINE yourself in the spot Robert was…..when he tried to encapsulate it into a story……just like Fenn.

            Know Fenn, know his antics, know if sense of humor, know as much as you can about him, and then and only then will you be able to really get good information.

            Is this possible? I don’t think it is anymore, due to the seclusion he seems to enjoy lately. Does anyone really know F? Maybe…his wife. Maybe Dal.

            IMO – Dal would be the goto guy here. I even think as much time as Dal has spent with this forum, with Fennboree and just being available at different interviews these past years, he does see something “within” F that a average seeker will not.

            Shoot – I live south of Santa Fe, but rarely head up that way. Let alone go and visit him at a coffee shop to talk shop….which I doubt he does nowadays.

            Anyhow, my point being is one can understand F, even “know him” in many ways that are not expressed verbally.

            We, as seekers, can glean on what we think is helpful…Seeker pointed that out already.

            If we don’t do this, we will only be running around in a forest with nothing to gain in the end except a good story on how we saw cows meandering through the woods, wondering if a bear will eat them.



  16. All,
    Recent comments seem to be related to the “word that is key”, the “important possibility” related to the winning solve, and the first clue (just to keep on topic); I decided to briefly enter this rabbit hole…
    IMO, one of the words in the poem narrows down the search area sufficiently that the quest becomes just “difficult” rather than “impossible”.
    IMO, the IP may be related to “it’s not what they say…it’s what they whisper”. (Perhaps this explains why many search in The Treasure State.)
    And, IMO, there is a reason why “begin” and “cease” are both in the poem.

    Well, it turned out to be a hobbit hole (I don’t know whose hobbit hole, but the old license plate on the wall started with 1A), so I made myself a sandwich, and am now among the yellow and purple flowers again, whittling myself a boomerang.
    Safe searching, everyone!
    “Have flashlight (because it gets dark quickly in the mountains), will travel”

  17. I wonder if it’s being in the “middle” that he misses most of all. ( Financial wealth attained; not coming close to what used to be).

    Reflection can be defined in many ways. Felt in many ways.

    • Phil,
      I’m not knocking you’re inquiry. Others have asked the same question… i’m just having some fun with it…

      There’s some 382,894 sq. miles of the RM’s. Cut that in 1/2 for the US RM’s we have 191,447 sq miles with the est. of 100,000 searcher, and being realistic, that not all those are active searchers, lets say 50,000 botg. That leave an approx. 3.8 sq miles for each searcher, and this is if they all searched different areas. That is still a lot of property for a 10″ sq. chest to be found. { approx, 4 sq miles equal 111513600 sq. feet } That’s a lot of red dots to be put on a map of the search area… 4 states.

      I also think, fun time is over and I’m being serious now, Do you really want to rely on another to have searched the area completely or efficiently?

      • I’ve found Also reduce the square milea by eliminating miles above 10k ft, and those places that an 80 yr old man wouldn’t go, as well as places he already said that it wasn’t at…I.e. A mine, a dam, etc.

        What are we at now….about 100k square miles….*winks*…

    • Phil-
      In my mind such a map would be not only useless but also detrimental to Forrest’s stated purpose for the Chase: To get folks off the couch and into the landscape.

      To begin, after six years and maybe 100,000 searchers there is one heck of a lot of the landscape that has been searched.

      2. It is impossible to know all the areas searched because most searchers don’t report that they have been out searching or where.

      3. Such a list would be meaningless because it could only suggest a very general area on a map and not exactly where in that area…such as “under the third rock north of the big tree”.

      4. It would promote a sense of hopelessness to others who would look at such a map and determine that since their area has already been searched, there is no point in looking in that area themselves…when in reality, different people search in unique and different ways and “searched” does not indicate that the place was searched “well” or “thoroughly”.
      Did the searcher use a metal detector? Did the search include looking up? Was a blaze found in the area? Did the searcher find any anomalies in the area? What were the nine clues that were followed that led the searcher to that area?

      5. Even a small dot on a map of any scale of the four states involved covers a very large area. A dot is relatively useless in telling me with precision what area was searched.

      Finally…we have a section on the blog called “Other’s Adventures”. In that section you will find, not only areas that have been searched, but a description, in most cases, of why the area was searched and in what way the area was searched. This kind of narrative is far more useful to me when heading out to an area to look than a dot on a map.

      I think I will leave it up to someone else to make such a, in my mind, useless tool. And when they do I will not be tempted to post it on this blog unless there is more accuracy than I could envision right now.

      • I believe Dal your observations are correct on this one.

        Living in West Yellowstone I have found myself going back to my previous search areas just to look at what is around that I may have missed on other trips. No map of where others have been looking is going to convince me not to go have a look if I think their solve has any merit. I also can tell searchers that Google Earth will only take an idea so far. Some things I’ve seen posted here I have been to have a look see and it doesn’t translate the same when you’re on the ground looking right at the object. The shear number of ways that the poem is being decoded is remarkable to me, but in the end you have to get outdoors.

        It’s also wonderful to be out in nature with the added bonus of possibly finding the blaze. I tarry scanted on my last trip and all I found was a big rock, that an 80 year old isn’t going to move on his own, after looking quickly down. I was brave and got wet and the two Bald Eagles I scared off was totally worth the trip in.

        Thanks again by the way for the sit down conversation back in September and a copy of TFTW Mr.Neitzel! It even arrived on my birthday. Didn’t really help me with the poem but I did love reading more about Forrest.

        • You’re in a prime location in striking distance without spending a lot of money & time to search for the treasure Road Hawk.

          Spend your weekends wisely unless you’re retired like many here & you can steal away to the Madison’s whenever you like.
          I envy you.

          Oh, so many creeks & so little time.

          • I am, as is my bride. However, being on retirement income and living in Mizzourah searches are very expensive.

          • Jake, I didn’t leave comment, on the hunt, someone is messing with me. I think personally I would have thrown a stick of dynamite into that hole you were chipping away at, or maybe not, there’s just so much a person can take! Just kidding but the thought has crossed my mind! . Frustrated in Arkansas and I know I m not the only one who feels this way, and I ‘ve only made one trip! After that patriots act, I say we as American are at a complete disadvantage!

          • Jake are you still in Montana? I liked your video keep up the good work. I apologize for the remarks i made on my last post, I was having a off day!

  18. I emailed FF a question a month or two ago and he responded with a very interesting answer. Unfortunately, without thinking, I deleted the email. I asked him if I knew the EXACT location of the treasure and shared it with him would he be willing to tell me if I was right or wrong. In his response he said no one can tell him the EXACT location. This confirmed my solve but at the same time I find this really interesting for everyone else’s solves. If the treasure is hidden/buried/submerged, in other words stationary, how could someone not be able to know the exact location. If I knew for certain that the treasure was at spot X I could give exact coordinates, unless it was constantly moving.

    • Can’t you go to your “TRASH” bin and find the deleted email? Just askin’ Very interesting response. Forrest is GREAT at giving non-answers. JDA

      • Can’t get it out of my trash because I deleted it a few weeks ago and the trash has been emptied since then. What I find interesting about his comment was that fact that he said no one knows the exact location. How is that possible? If I had a solve that placed the treasure at an exact spot then I would be able to tell him the exact location. Unless, like I said above, the treasure is moving or can be moved. That, in my mind, is the only way someone wouldn’t be able to give an exact location.

      • Ya JD & Greg,
        I’ve got a few email addresses from different servers & Windows mail & when I delete any, they go to the trash folder until I’m ready to purge them.

        I’m not buying what you’re selling greg…

        • Well Jake, if you can tell me how to recover a deleted email from gmail I will gladly do so and share the email here.

          • greg,
            Gmail automatically purges emails in the trash folder 30 days.
            You are better off emailing Forrest & asking him to provide the email he sent you.
            Good luck with that.

    • Per gregorious. I may be incorrect, but I believe I’ve read on the blog that GPS do not give exact coordinates…slightly off. Earth is in constant motion, hence what he stated would be correct.

    • Hi Gregorious: the simplest explanation is that there is no such thing as “exact coordinates”. Exact to what precision? GPS is only good to about 12 feet. Stand still and watch the coordinates that your GPS reports. If you have it in degrees and decimal minutes format, then the minutes will probably be reported as dd.ddd’. Watch the changes in the final decimal position; for latitude, a change of just 0.001′ equates to about 1.85 meters, or 6 feet.

      • Why does it have to be gps coordinates in order to be exact.? What if I were to say it is five feet inside “so and so” cave along the north wall just sitting there. Would that not be exact? When I sent him the email I never said exact GPS coordinates nor did he mention such a thing. I simply said the exact location and he said no one is able to give the exact location. How is that possible?

        • Gregorious,
          Respectfully, I think FF is just saying” no one knows the exact location other than him, so he’s not really going to answer your guestion the way you want him to.


          • gregorious –

            I just read your posts above – and I believe he really said that to you.

            The reason is that the coordinates do not take you to the treasure. As I have said before, there is a ground game. This IMO can be done from home – but would be much easier if you are there. Trust me the treasure is not moving.

        • It’s possible to not be able to tell the exact location beacusse maybe it’s based on perception of two things out there. Which in turn means it’s slightly different for everyone.

          • Hey pd, two things as in an alignment situation. I had an old solve that utilized that type of clue finding. Follow your creek up until one sees the previously identified blaze. My blaze was blocked by the terrain of the creek at the start of my exploration until I walked further up.

            Not being able to tell an exact location sounds about right from this type of scenario. I surmised to check the bank of the creek where this alignment showed up with a metal detector. There’s nothing else descript that you could tell him exactly where it lies. Maybe he found a perfect spot 6″ or more away from where my height and eyes would pick. All IMO.

      • Gregorious: *you* are the one that implied the use of coordinates by specifically mentioning them: “If I knew for certain that the treasure was at spot X I could give exact coordinates, unless it was constantly moving.” The point is whether providing coordinates, or a distance and direction relative to some fixed landmark or waypoint, there is unavoidable imprecision in the value. In any case, your question gave Forrest an out. I doubt he would tell you yes or no; he’d probably just say something like, “If you’re sure, why don’t you just go retrieve it?”

  19. Hey Seeker- I think it was you that was interested in the commas and breaks and stuff. Assuming the thrill (shivering cold feeling) of the chase (hunt, following)…is to “solve” the “case”….maybe there’s nine or so klews in here to warm one up?

    Meaning “outer protective covering” is from late 14c. Also used from 1660s with a sense “frame” (as in staircase, casement). Artillery sense is from 1660s, from case-shot “small projectiles put in cases” (1620s). Its application in the printing trade (first recorded 1580s) to the two trays where compositors keep their types in separate compartments for easy access led to upper-case letter for a capital (1862) and lower-case for small letters.
    The cases, or receptacles, for the type, which are always in pairs, and termed the ‘upper’ and the ‘lower,’ are formed of two oblong wooden frames, divided into compartments or boxes of different dimensions, the upper case containing ninety-eight and the lower fifty-four. In the upper case are placed the capital, small capital, and accented letters, also figures, signs for reference to notes &c.; in the lower case the ordinary running letter, points for punctuation, spaces for separating the words, and quadrats for filling up the short lines. [“The Literary Gazette,” Jan. 29, 1859]

    Just some food for though i came across over lunch while spilling a few beans in my lap.

  20. For about eight months, I thought that stanza #5 related only to why Forrest secreted the treasure, and why it was important for a searcher to find it. The short answer, “The Thrill of the Chase”.

    I now believe that in addition to the above, that there is other important information hidden in these lines.

    Just my most recent thoughts – JDA

  21. so we have nine clues and an unknown number of hints.
    some have tightly focused on a key word .
    and one or more have been within 200′
    And forrest said it may be over sooner than he thought.
    Forrest also said he was fortunate to know his poem says what he wanted it to.
    A Phantom knows and a phantom is an apparition

  22. This is how I read the poem.

    If the following helps anybody with the treasure chase then use it.

    If I follow the poem precisely then it does not tell me anything worth looking into until it tells us too.

    I want to take a look at,
    ” If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,
    Look quickly down, your quest to cease,
    But tarry scant with marvel gaze,
    Just take the chest and go in peace,”

    This to me is telling me that after someone follows the poem precisely up to this point which is just reading it, and have found the word blaze,then look quickly down to the next line which is “But tarry scant with marvel gaze”, and look at it, and do what it says for you to do. Does anybody see what I am getting at? This is the only time we are given specifics as to where to end the chase,or quest. The end of the chase is in that line.

    What about the beginning? Where is the beginning? The beginning is
    “As I have gone alone in there
    And with my treasures bold,
    I can keep my secret where,
    And hint of riches new and old”.

    When you find yourself at the end of something you have already been there, so what do you do when you are there?

    You “Begin it where warm waters halt
    And take it in the canyon down,
    Not far, but too far to walk.
    Put in below the home of Brown.”

    That’s why I have always said there is no need for a map until you know where you are going. Well all of the above is my opinion, but I think I may be in the right path and if I am right you will be shocked where all this leads to. RC.

    • RC—- studying the “tenses” in the poem is very interesting. Only a couple of places is the present tense mentioned— ex: “if you ARE brave and IN the wood….” Almost all others are past tense, or speaking of something you will be doing in the future. And one stanza ” So why is it that I must go?” actually sounds like it should start the poem, not be near the end of it. Quite interesting.

  23. In my solve I find that- there is only one man made structure the rest are land marks made by nature – the only man made is heavy loads and waters high – sorry but its only an opinion

  24. Evening All,

    Sorry for the week absence, I was prepping for a hurricane down here in FL. All is well and we were very fortunate where we are that it went further out to sea or it could have been significantly worse, like it was for those poor folks on the shore.

    I found the conversation from a few days ago where Gregarious was saying that FF answered a question of his in an email as to the treasures exact coordinates. Something to the effect of “….if I tell you the exact coordinates of the treasure, can you tell me if I’m correct? FF: “…no one can tell him the exact coordinates of the chest..”

    Now, while FF is perpetually cunning in his responses, I did find it interesting. If Gregarious “deleted” email were actually factual, then it does pose that interesting question as to the meaning. Firstly, it would not be feasible to believe that the chest is in “constant motion”, for the simple reason that he knew the place he wanted to leave it, meaning that it was a specific location. Second, there are no rational explanations as to how the chest could be in motion without anyone discovering it as was mentioned in a prior post. Make sense so far?

    I think JDA hit it on the head with his statement that Forrest is tricky and this is likely another non-clue. As we all know GPS coordinates are not truly accurate or at least accurate within a 20 or so foot radius. So with that in mind, if your solve brought you to a location in the mountains, below 10,200 ft, in the middle of a beautiful forest, then how could you know Exactly where it was. Is it in a tree, which tree? Is it buried, well where then? Is it in a river bottom, then again, where? So I think if his response to Gregarious is true, then it is another non-clue, definitely not a smoking gun IMOO.

    I think what I take from it is that you have to have a solve and that solve has to confidently bring you to a place, but at this point is where you need to BOTG to complete the quest and find the blaze.

    anyhow, just my personal thoughts, best of luck!

    The Sleepy Hollow Bard

    • Sleepy,
      IMO the “exact location” discussion boils down to;

      a) It’s kind of a moot point to even talk about this statement with out a transcript of the full conversation. There’s no context as to what was said by both parties so why bother trying to interpret or guess?

      b) F knows no one has found the exact location and, therefore, can’t provide a location. If they had they wouldn’t bother sending emails with coordinates; they’d show up on at his front door with a big smile on their face.

    • Sleepy Hollow Bard…Did you known you can increase the accuracy of your civilian GPS by 50% if you use a second GPS (by averaging their locations and also allowing sufficient time for multiple satellites to triangulate during calibration)?

  25. Curious if anyone thinks that the chest is referred to as “Brown” in some way?

    The area of Clue locations seems IMHO, to focus upon a very small area.


  26. Here is a thought. Has anyone else considered the line “there will be no paddle up your creek just heavy loads and water high.” Is forrest assumption that the seeker would head the wrong way? If it were the way to the treasure why would Forrest not state there be no paddle up my creek? Following these lines “if you’ve been wise and found the blaze” its been said that searchers have been within a few hundred feet of the treasure. This would leave me to believe that because they went up there creek, they miss the blaze. Any thoughts?

    • Nick…To answer your question…YES I DO believe that there is a natural propensity to miss “YOUR CREEK” when following the poem clues. That is why you have to NOT be MEEK immediately after you PUT IN and DRAW NIGH. Don’t let the current carry you TOO FAR too soon. Soon after you find YOUR CREEK you will find that you can no longer paddle up it. In fact you will secret your WOOD canoe in THE WOOD until you return with the TC with the WOOD interior. (Be very very careful floating down fast streams with dense wood overgrowth. In fact if this is the case, you are probably in the wrong place IMO because the chase is not intrinsically unsafe). You should be able to see the sky throughout most if not all of the search IMO.

    • Nick…
      I think most folks do not even know what that line really even means…( “…up your creek…”) exactly. Just sayin’…

      • hi ken

        both meanings tend to suggest that possessing a paddle is irrelevant, although one meaning may be slightly more pleasant than the other

      • IMO, “up your creek” is a common figure of speech (transliteration of “up a creek without a paddle”) and therefore by definition it should not be taken strictly literally but may be somewhat literal.

  27. There’s a feature length movie coming out, anyone live near NYC that can go see it? The teaser looks pretty good..

  28. Then again I guess I’m biased but we’re all a little partial to our own solves I guess.

  29. I am 99 44/100 % sure why nobody walks up on it. Also why he could walk easily twice in one afternoon, yet now it is a tough whole day affair to get to it. I made it to the spot once after three tries. But did to spend enough time and did not look in the right spots. There was a lot of flat black rock around with shelves underneath the rock. You would have to ly down to see under the rock did not bring a flashlight-dumb of me. (Quick ly down).

    Maybe next spring it will be easier to get to the spot.

    FYI there is a college bike race that is very interesting.

    I will go to fennboree next year

  30. Since there is 68 pages now of “the nine clues” and i dont feel like going back through all 500 comments per page. I thought I would share what I thought were the nine cluse. I am sure that I’m probably not the first person to see this. It just kinda makes since to me. There are nine sentences. Which makes me think 9 clues and within some of the sentences there are hints to unlock the clue. As well as the book for reference. And yes a good map.

    As I have gone alone in there and with my treasures bold, I can keep my secret where, and hint of riches new and old.

    Begin it where warm waters halt and take it in the canyon down, not far, but too far to walk.

    Put in below the home of Brown.

    From there it’s no place for the meek, the end is ever drawing nigh; there’ll be no paddle up your creek, just heavy loads and water high.

    If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,
    look quickly down, your quest to cease,
    but tarry scant with marvel gaze,
    just take the chest and go in peace.

    So why is it that I must go and leave my trove for all to seek?

    The answers I already know, I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak.

    So hear me all and listen good, your effort will be worth the cold.

    If you are brave and in the wood I give you title to the gold.

    • JW,
      There are quite a few who think the 9 sentences hold the 9 clues & have seen that going back to 2013 here on this website.
      JDA & others also think this is the way to read the poem now.

      This way of thinking seems straightforward to me & may seem logical for others.

      I have thought about this way of thinking when someone had mentioned it last year & gave a go of it, but couldn’t put anything together solidly. After listening to one of the videos where Forrest stated that the blaze is one of the clues & this whole stanza is one sentence, I decided to scrap this idea considering “the blaze” is one of the clues.

      How could “the blaze” be one of the clues if you guys need the whole stanza?

      After throwing things around for awhile, I came up with these as being the 9 clues we need to figure out.

      1. Begin it where warm waters halt
      2. And take it in the canyon down,
      3. Put in below the home of Brown.
      4. From there it’s no place for the meek,
      5. The end is ever drawing nigh;
      6. There’ll be no paddle up your creek,
      7. Just heavy loads
      8. Water high.
      9. The blaze

      This quote by Forrest suggests that the last clue is the blaze.

      “What surprises me is that so many ignore the first clue in the poem. Without it all the searcher has is the memory of a nice vacation. Although many have tried, I doubt that anyone will find the blaze before they have figured out the first clue.” f

      Why else would he mention the first clue & then the blaze?
      Seems obvious to me.

      • Jake;

        I will not beat a dead horse, but out of 24 lines, you are using only nine? This just does not seem to be logical. What about the other 15 lines? Logic tells me that Forrest would not write a poem of 24 lines, and want the searcher to throw away 15 of the lines.
        Four of these lines are before you use your first, and then another ten after you find the blaze.

        Why would Forrest even write the ten after you supposedly have already found the blaze and the treasure? Seems like a waste of time and energy.

        Why have the four “Preamble or preface” lines at the beginning, if they are not of value?

        Sorry, but your logic eludes me. JDA

        • JD,
          The horse has been beat to death many years here.

          You said: “but out of 24 lines, you are using only nine? This just does not seem to be logical.”

          It doesn’t seem logical to use 9 lines seeing there are 9 clues???
          Your logic eludes me….

          What you believe here is illogical as well.
          You use all of #4 stanza for a clue even though Forrest has stated that the blaze is a clue.

          Cary on.

          • I will never be able to convince you that I MAY be correct, but to answer your question re stanza #4. Those are comma’s at the end of each line, not periods. “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,” is NOT a complete sentence, the other three lines are meant to be included as one thought…or so I was taught by my English teacher oh so many years ago. But what does she know? Possibly nothing, just like I possibly know nothing.

            Hope you have a GREAT day Jake, and best of luck in your search. JDA

          • Your’e right JD,
            You will never be able to convince me.
            You know why?
            Because you are just speculating with no factual info.
            I at least offer you fact.
            What is it that you guys don’t understand when Forrest said:
            “I mean there’s people driving down the street looking for a blaze, because that’s one of the clues.”

            I just don’t get you guys.
            Have a nice day.

        • JDA…IMO the four Preamble lines are to protect his family and friends from unscrupulous treasure hunters (surely a prime consideration for FF)…In other words, FF is the only one who knows where he went alone and he can keep that secret because any others who might have known are not alive (inference from further FF statements). With this concern plainly stated, then FF can feel confident about giving the NINE poem clues for strangers to find his trove.

      • Yes you could be right right. That’s the way I looked at it for along time.
        But let’s take
        “no place for the meek”
        as a reference
        To me it’s the whole sentence that adds to one clue he is explaining why it’s no place for the meek.
        The rest of the sentence just seem like hints to unlocking meek.

        And the same thing for being it wwhw. The whole sentence is saying but one thing.

        • Wouldn’t “hints” be a form of a clue?…..

          an indirect, covert, or helpful suggestion; clue:
          Give me a hint as to his identity.

          Sorry, I had to stop from going in circles….*smiles*….I get dizzy when I go in circles….LOL.


          • That’s what I thought as well. But to me if a hint is a clue then there would be more then nine clues in the poem so. I figured the whole sentence add up to one cluse and by doing that leaves nine clues/nine sentences.
            I still could me wrong.

          • I agree with what you said….I passed College English 102 with a B!

            *BIG smile* LOL

            But seriously, I do agree that the number 9 plays an importance somewhere on top of the known “nine clues”…as part of the solve.

            I just haven’t figured that level out.

            I always wondered if FF had used an old cipher to help in his creation of this poem….and if so, what or which one did he use.

            I think I figured out at least one source, but had to have boots on the ground to find, but it led me back to the poem, anyhiw. To me, that is always good,,in some ways.

            “Hint = clue”

            FF also used the word, but in plural form, when he said that there was “subtle hints”. Addl “clues” – in TTOTC. He also, in that same interview, said the poem is in the book….so he could be referencing that the poem is a clue in itself….but subtly.

            Anyhow…beside those points.,,,it was interesting that hint and clue are somehow trying to be placed into separate groups on the blog.

            I think they both are helpful in the solve, because one must need to weed out those thoughts that don’t have any bearing, and both hint and clues are used.

            “WWWH is not a dam.”

            To the forum…is this a hint or a clue?


        • BTW- and this is for the forum goers…IMO…this thread gets the best information conveyed and expressed.

          Not to say the other threads aren’t any good, because I read like 20 different ones, but of them all….this one is solid.

          We get to hear thoughts..,right or wrong, but things we may not have perceived.

          Which is very helpful in the elimination process.

          Thanks everyone.

      • Hi Jake.

        IMO – I think you are on the right track.

        Those may be the “key” phrases and/or clues, but JD is also right….in simpler Tenn speak…”don’t mess with the poem”.

        Subtracting useful words is priblsbly not the best angle to do or work with. You ok would be second guessing Fenn’s “rightness” he said the poem was in.

        Now would/could you investigate parts of the poem for a better meaning, of course…..just don’t screw with the order.

        Of one looks at the poem….one would also realize that it is setup in a fasion as:

        “before”….”during”……and “after”….three phases.

        As I have gone in there…..”before”….draws you into the story. First phase…a history lesson of sorts….

        Begin it where warm waters halt…..begins the “during” phase…..or time to get off your butts and get moving….”during”.

        ….and “after”….

        Why have I left my trove…..

        History lesson completed in 24 lines.

        What do you guys think?



    • Hi Jake — there is one thing that you and JDA have in common: you both think the clues can only be words, phrases or sentences in the poem. You only differ in how you parse your nine clues. To use Forrest’s words, you both oversimplify the poem, and you underestimate the confirmation value of the book.
      Jake: let’s take a look at your 9:

      1. Begin it where warm waters halt
      2. And take it in the canyon down,
      3. Put in below the home of Brown.
      4. From there it’s no place for the meek,
      5. The end is ever drawing nigh;
      6. There’ll be no paddle up your creek,
      7. Just heavy loads
      8. Water high.
      9. The blaze

      You’ve maintained that there are no clues in the first stanza, which is your choice. But recognize that you’ve made a decision there that may prevent you from finding the solution.

      Your #1, 2 and 3 all seem reasonable, and I think the majority of people would agree with them. However, you’ve again made the decision to ignore a line: “Not far, but too far to walk.” Again, this is a risky decision. Yes, the line ~seems~ like a throw-away line to many because they lack the imagination for how it could convey anything useful. You would think people might pay more attention to it given that he titled his next book using the last four words. But apparently that’s not a big enough hint for everyone. At the risk of upsetting the few people who have figured this out for themselves, I’m going to throw you all a bone so that you can start to see the light that there is much more to the poem (and the book) than meets the eye.

      The hint is in the aptly-named “Important Literature”. As you all must know by now, on page 11 he gives a brief synopsis of Hemingway’s “A Farewell to Arms” when he ~says~ he’s describing the story “For Whom the Bell Tolls”. This, of course, is not an accident. Forrest is seeing if you’re paying attention, and if you *are* paying attention, then the reward is a hint. I won’t hit you over the head with it, but go back to that poem line that you decided wasn’t a clue. What do you see now?

      • zap: “you both think the clues can only be words, phrases or sentences in the poem.”

        That’s how the poem was written, if I can use that word now. Words & punctuation’s.
        I don’t see numbers anywhere, do you?

        The majority of people in this line of thinking use NF,BTFTW.
        I don’t see it as a clue at all seeing Forrest said the hints are subtle.
        Trust me, my imagination is greater than most, but I have the ability to pan out the realistic from what doesn’t make sense.

        Anyway, I am at a loss. I left my books with a stranger on the Gallatin where I was staying & he knew nothing about the chase but he decided to go on a hike with me anyway & helped me find the way by accident.

        I have yet to get in touch with him & did not elaborate on my whole solve but he was very interested & I want to see what he comes up with on his own.
        He tore his ankle up pretty good & almost fell off a cliff, but a sapling saved his life.
        He has a death wish anyway & a bit suicidal, but he had a dream the night before we met at the lodge.
        He was going to meet someone to point him in the right direction in life.
        He says it is me & I told him it was Forrest through me.

        Anyway, I do not have the books to do any research about your stamps & important lit. maybe you can elaborate further.

        I just thought he could use them more than me in another way.

      • Hi Jake,

        “zap: ‘you both think the clues can only be words, phrases or sentences in the poem.” That’s how the poem was written, if I can use that word now. Words & punctuation’s. I don’t see numbers anywhere, do you?”

        I’m not talking about numbers. I’m pointing out that you, JDA, and I’m sure most of the posters here insist on simply *reading* the poem because you can’t get past the close-minded notion that all it is is simple words to be interpreted.

        “The majority of people in this line of thinking use NF,BTFTW. I don’t see it as a clue at all seeing Forrest said the hints are subtle.”

        So you just throw away the line because you think his book Too Far to Walk is too obvious? Sure, the book title is an obvious match, but *that* isn’t the clue. It’s a hint that that line is EXTREMELY important, and you should probably try to figure out why.

        “Anyway, I am at a loss. I left my books with a stranger on the Gallatin where I was staying & he knew nothing about the chase but he decided to go on a hike with me anyway & helped me find the way by accident.”

        I now recall you saying that you had loaned your TTOTC to the stranger, so I understand that you can’t investigate the post stamps (which won’t help you any at this stage anyway). But for the problem at hand, you don’t need the book because my post above gave you all the relevant information. Believe me, you will probably slap yourself in the head when you have the “ahha!” moment. You won’t yet know what it means, but at least you will start to come around to the idea that Forrest is playing a different game than you imagined.

        • zap, so once again you throw insults around instead of giving hard facts.
          So now I am “closed-minded” & before I had no imagination.
          Keep on going, you’re really offering a lot here.

          “*reading* the poem because you can’t get past the close-minded notion that all it is is simple words to be interpreted.”

          You have gone right back to where we left off a few days ago.
          I know what you don’t know because I’m smarter than you & I will give you a tidbit here or there & insult your intelligence in the process without proving anything.

          Thanks zap,
          As I said before, you need to elaborate on your assumptions of others.
          I have not seen any proof of your findings & therefore you should never underestimate your fellow person.

          If I had a dollar from everyone that had an Aha moment, I wouldn’t be searching for the treasure.

          You need to come around & stop insulting & playing games with people.
          Just come out & spit it out instead of being a tweazler.

          • I thought this place was to offer your opinion, ask a question, or share some something you might have found useful.
            It just seems like there’s some that just want to gloat, or force people to see things there way. Offer up what you have to say with out foce, ignorance, or pride. At this point no one knows truth from fact. You can debate things in a better manner.

          • JW:
            “I thought this place was to offer your opinion, ask a question, or share some something you might have found useful.”

            That is precisely what I’m doing.

            “It just seems like there’s some that just want to gloat, or force people to see things there way.”

            Talk about shooting the messenger. What’s wrong with providing a hint and giving people the opportunity to think just a little bit differently and possibly enjoy the feeling of accomplishment that comes from solving something on your own? That’s how *I* choose to provide hints. I made an exception above out of sheer frustration. Believe me, it won’t happen again.

          • zap,
            You obviously did not read & understand what I had to say.
            “What’s wrong with providing a hint”
            That’s the problem.
            You think it’s a hint.
            But you cannot prove that it is.

          • Hay Zap, it was not just directed at you buddy. I have seen a few times through out these pages. I do find what you say to be helpful and to make some goods points. I’m not saying you shouldn’t feel good about what you figure out either. You should feel good, I feel good as well when I find something of use.
            But we should debate with an open mind.

          • “zap, You obviously did not read & understand what I had to say.

            “What’s wrong with providing a hint”

            “That’s the problem. You think it’s a hint.”

            No, Jake, *I* know it’s a hint.

            “But you cannot prove that it is.”

            Without giving you what NF,BTFTW is, I would agree that I probably cannot prove it to your satisfaction. But can you come up with another plausible explanation for why Forrest would even mention “For Whom the Bell Tolls” when it’s the wrong novel and has absolutely no relevance to his memoir?

        • zap,
          See, the problem here is the way you word things.
          You make it sound like your helping us out & doing us a favor & you may be.
          But, & that’s a big BUT, you don’t know for sure & neither do we, so why word things in a way in which you know more than us. You don’t.

          That’s why I use a lot of conservative wording when I don’t know, but when I am quoting the man, I let it rip.

        • Hi zaphod73491,

          Seeing this page is about The Nine Clues, I was wondering if you could maybe offer what you think are the nine clues instead of criticizing others?

          Thank you,

          • A number of my 9 clues are so different from what everyone expects the clues to be that I can only give you a partial answer. Clue #1 is the word that is key, and as I’ve posted previously it is to be found in the first stanza. #2 is figuring out WWWH, which is probably next to impossible without having clue #1. “Take it in the canyon down” is not really a clue for me because it is automatically known from WWWH. So we come to NF,BTFTW (the subject of the thread above) — this is my #3. Clue #4 is too difficult to explain, but suffice to say it is found in the poem and ties in with clue #3 and has a nice hint in the book. Clue #5 is home of Brown, and clue #6 is the blaze. There are multiple clues in the poem that help identify the blaze, as well as multiple hints in the book, so it is not clear to me whether to count finding the blaze as solving a single clue or solving the collection of clues.

            I cannot think of an easy way to explain the remaining clues without revealing “the important possibility related to the winning solve.” I guess I can say that the most important remaining clue is in stanza 4.

          • Thanks zap,
            I knew you would elaborate more.
            You came up a little short on the 9 clues but I understand not everyone wants to give away their secrets.

            I guess this one is too hard for us to understand:
            Clue #4 is too difficult to explain.

            If there is a clue that is too difficult to explain, then maybe you don’t have the right interp.

            I will soak in what you have given by pulling teeth & now have to see the tooth fairy.
            I appreciate you coming somewhat clean & sharing.
            I will rest on it & be sure to pull some more teeth tomorrow.
            Have a good night.

          • Jake – I apologize if it felt like pulling teeth for you. (It was pulling hair at my end!)

            “You came up a little short on the 9 clues but I understand not everyone wants to give away their secrets.”

            I’m not too wrapped up on the clue count; part of the problem is when two different parts of the poem provide the same clue. I’d count that as one clue, but some might count it as two. In other cases, two very different clues may provide the same answer in different ways — do you count that as one clue or two?

            “I guess this one is too hard for us to understand: Clue #4 is too difficult to explain. If there is a clue that is too difficult to explain, then maybe you don’t have the right interp.”

            No, it’s not that. It would be easy for you to understand. What’s hard (for me) is telling you anything about it that doesn’t give away the whole shebang. There is an overarching clue delivery technique that is shared by many of the clues, so revealing it for one clue would be a big give away for other clues.

            “I will soak in what you have given by pulling teeth & now have to see the tooth fairy. I appreciate you coming somewhat clean & sharing. I will rest on it & be sure to pull some more teeth tomorrow. Have a good night.”

            You as well.

          • Hi All – just a follow up on the statistical odds of a match between BTFTW (but too far to walk) and FWTBT (For Whom the Bell Tolls). This was to address the concerns that I couldn’t know for sure this is a deliberate hint by Forrest. If you’ve solved Forrest’s BTFTW clue, you will know for sure it’s a hint, but I told Jake yesterday that I doubted I could convince him without actually giving away the answer to the clue.

            So I decided to take a statistical approach: how often would you expect a match between those 5 letters in ordinary English, allowing any order of the letters? If you run a Monte Carlo simulation drawing letters at frequencies matching their occurrence as starting letters of English words (e.g. the letter T begins a word about 16.7% of the time), the odds of matching all 5 letters is worse than 1 in 4700.

        • “zap, so once again you throw insults around instead of giving hard facts. So now I am “closed-minded” & before I had no imagination.
          Keep on going, you’re really offering a lot here.”

          Jake, why do you always have to be so defensive? Because I suggested you were being close-minded about the poem? That’s an insult??
          I didn’t say you were pigheaded or obstinate or ignorant or anything similarly offensive. I said your approach to reading the poem is close-minded. I suppose you would have been just as insulted if I said your approach lacked sufficient imagination. I don’t know how to sugar-coat the words to make them more palatable for you.

          “You have gone right back to where we left off a few days ago. I know what you don’t know because I’m smarter than you & I will give you a tidbit here or there & insult your intelligence in the process without proving anything.”


          (B)ut (T)oo (F)ar (T)o (W)alk

          (F)or (W)hom (T)he (B)ell (T)olls

          Same 5 letters. But rather than exercise a single brain cell making an honest attempt to make this connection for yourself, you prefer to assume that I derive some sort of satisfaction out of tormenting you.

          • Sorry bit I view 2 books that seem to me have no correlation to the poems. In simpler terms “tftw” obviously described a distance..imo 🙂

          • ZAP, you have me scratching my head right now. Because what you have pointed out for tftw clue.
            It seems that it was deliberately but in the book as a hint and FF has said none of the the hints were deliberately placed in the book.
            But I really can’t think what your looking at is wrong either. Because he dose refer to WHOM THE BELL TOLLS. But the goes on to talking about A Farewell to arms.
            I’m not sure what way to look at this.
            I’m still unsure though how it’s ties to the poem as well.

          • Hi JW,

            “ZAP, you have me scratching my head right now. Because what you have pointed out for tftw clue.”

            I’m happy to see that it’s got you thinking!

            “It seems that it was deliberately (p)ut in the book as a hint and FF has said none of the the hints were deliberately placed in the book.”

            It’s deliberate. FF put LOTS of deliberate hints in the book. So did Forrest tell a white lie? Let’s revisit exactly what he wrote to Emily:

            “The chapters in my book have very subtle hints but are not deliberately placed to aid the seeker.”

            The key word here is “aid”. None of the hints I’ve found in the book would aid a would-be seeker in finding the treasure if they didn’t already have an answer to the associated clue in the poem. However, the hints ~do~ help *confirm* the correct ideas that spring from the poem. The hints provide confidence that you’ve figured something out. But stand-alone, they are merely oddities.

            So you have:

            1. Not far, but too far to walk.
            2. His book “Too Far to Walk”
            3. “For Whom the Bell Tolls”

            I’ll give you all another hint that this isn’t just a weird coincidence. There is another BTFTW/FWTBT variant hiding in The Thrill of the Chase. (For all I know there could be more.) Here’s the hint: has it struck you as odd how often Fenn uses the words “dumb” or “stupid” in the book? Usually these adjectives are used to describe people or sentient creatures, but not once does he use them in reference to living things. I found 10 instances in the book, though I can’t be certain I found them all. But see if one of those occurrences doesn’t stand out.

          • Zap,
            While I get the idea of aid, not deliberately placed… that might be saying, those hint are there just not place for directly seeing them as aided information line of thought.

            But What bugs me is the second book idea. Did fenn intentionally write that to aid us? I mean the title sticks out like a sore thumb, but it seems to be used more than the book fenn only talks about has helpful [the TOTC]. I have not seen fenn mention once ~ other than Canada not on the map ~ the tftw book will help.

            I have heard many possibilities, 10 miles etc. from the second book, just haven’t heard fenn talk about it as helpful, like the original. Anyways… I do like the connection to what you presented with For whom the bell tolls and But too far to walk. I just wonder about the second book… even with its title.

          • Seeker – I will assume you missed this answer from f…

            Q. Other than the one you’ve mentioned, are there any other hints in Too Far To Walk that will help solve the nine clues?
            A. Well, there is a major clue in the book, but I don’t think it will help you find the treasure chest. I will tell you what the clue is. (Fenn talks about the map in the back of the book and the Rocky Mountains go into Canada but the map stops at the US border) That’s a clue, but it’s not going to help you much. (Question in Background: But that’s not THE clue?) There are no clues in this book (Too Far To Walk), but there are some hints. (42:45)
            Moby Dickens Bookstore Event

            Take it for what it’s worth. If there are hints in TFTW, I bet they are similar in nature to those in TTOTC. Considering I can’t seem to correctly find the ones in TTOTC (and those are good enough to help get you to the chest), I haven’t ventured too far into TFTW and hints that might be there.

          • Hi Seeker,

            “…But What bugs me is the second book idea. Did fenn intentionally write that to aid us? I mean the title sticks out like a sore thumb, but it seems to be used more than the book fenn only talks about has helpful [the TOTC]. I have not seen fenn mention once ~ other than Canada not on the map ~ the tftw book will help.”

            I can’t say whether TFTW is helpful or not since I don’t have it. There could well be hints in it, a la TTOTC. All I was commenting on was the title — it’s clear where that title came from.

            “I have heard many possibilities, 10 miles etc. from the second book, just haven’t heard fenn talk about it as helpful, like the original.”

            I, too, have heard the 10-mile comment, but it plays no part in my solution. For me, the “NF, BTFTW” line in the poem has nothing to do with 10 miles, and in fact is not a specification of some measured distance.

            “Anyways… I do like the connection to what you presented with For whom the bell tolls and But too far to walk. I just wonder about the second book… even with its title.”

            I take the connection no further than the title. It happened to be ~my~ clue that the line was important, and that’s what led me to For Whom the Bell Tolls and the other hint involving the many instances of “dumb” and “stupid”.

          • Hi JW:

            “I don’t see it. I found 13. I not sure what I’m doing wrong.”

            Excellent — you found three more than I did! (I was pretty sure there were more hiding in the book, but I skimmed the book pretty quickly to find the 10 I did). Anyway, it doesn’t sound to me like you’re doing anything wrong. You just need to look at the cases you found and pay attention to the words surrounding “dumb” or “stupid”. One of your 13 cases should stand out to you. Good luck!

          • ZAP, I see what I was doing wrong. It was the dumb and stupid that kept getting in my way. they wouldn’t fit within what i was looking at. Thanks for teaching me how to fish. You are truly quite the owl buddy. My eyes are wide open. At this point I’m just wondering if I can even catch up. I have found something with one of the stamps that point to one of the four states and a river that is within one of the four states. But at this point I have no idea how it ties in with the poem. I made this find about a year ago and never could figure out how to use it. But maybe with my new look at things I might find a use for it.
            Good luck.

          • Congrats, JW! Sounds to me like you found the “dumb” BTFTW and you are starting to get some insight into the tricks that Forrest likes to use. Good luck!

          • ZAP, does one have to go to IL for guidance to the book or can you just go to the book. I ask because u found two variance of what I looked at. I think I might know what the “first” is but I’m having the hardest time finding my confirmation. I understand stand if you don’t want to say. I know you have put in alot to get to where you are.

          • Oh, duh! Sorry. I guess I’m still not quite sure what you’re asking. The BTFTW hint appears (at least) twice in TTOTC. Presumably you’ve found both instances: Hemingway and “dumb”. Is it that you’re wondering what NF,BTFTW means? Afraid I can’t divulge that; too critical.

          • What I was asking is, if I think I know what the answer is to one of the cluses. do I have to find it in important literatures first and then in the rest of the pages of the book. Or can I just find my confirmation by got to where I think my answer is in the book.
            I understand if that’s asking to much.
            I hope u find it buddy.

          • Hi JW,

            “What I was asking is, if I think I know what the answer is to one of the cluses. do I have to find it in important literatures first and then in the rest of the pages of the book. Or can I just find my confirmation by got to where I think my answer is in the book.”

            Well, I can only answer for myself of course, but here was my experience. When I’ve solved a clue using the poem alone, the book provided some nice confirmation of that clue’s answer. This was true of both WWWH and NF,BTFTW,
            as well as later clues. “Important Literature” was valuable for the NF, BTFTW clue *confirmation*, but would have been of no use for actually figuring out what that clue means.

  31. “Oh, to be Jung again. To Hume should I turn when I grow old?”— Friedrich Nietzche

  32. Our greatest mistake in the chase is not able to follow orders,commands,directions. Our ignorance about the chase is reflected in our stubbornness not to follow but to lead a way we do not know. We are playing a poker game with Fenn and he’s holding 4 aces and a king, but we have a royal flush. We have him where we want him. Does anybody see that? RC.

    • OK RC, yesterday “WE” are about to checkmate Fenn. Today “WE” have him where “We” want him and are holding a royal flush.

      You asked, “Does anybody see that?”……Apparently “WE” don’t see what you do. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof; so fill us in on why you are having these grandiose visions.

      • I’m lost….why would we want to put Fenn in check mate anyhow? Don’t we like him having fun and playing with us? Trying to cream him seems a bit counterintuitive….

          • I thought he was planning to cream himself and hurl his remains on top of the chest anyhow. What’s the rush?

          • Haven’t read anywhere he would cream himself and throw his remains on top of the chest. Just when the time came, he would throw himself on the chest with his last gasp. Certainly no rush.

          • Good point.

            …but now I’m even more confused. That MAY mean, technically, finding the chest doesn’t mean we creamed him…yet we will possibly also find him creamated on the lid? With a faint scent of Altoids looming in the night?

          • I stand corrected. Wintogreen. Definitely Wintogreen. Hint of pine in there for sure. 😉

          • It seems to me he said you could find it during the daytime. No need to wait for the night. I guess it could be found either day or night. Need to have a flashlight handy in case the search goes longer than expected and a sandwich and some other goodies for energy. Plenty of water is a must. Have to be prepared no matter what. Hope I can go out searching one more time before the snow falls. I don’t know.

          • Search time is getting limited with the sunset arriving earlier and earlier. This evening when I was out and about, made the comment how dark it was starting to get and it wasn’t 7 o’clock yet. Wait until next month when we have to set the clocks back an hour. Ugh.

      • @ Goofy What proof do I require? The proof is in the poem and is there for everyone to see. The thing is most searchers do no follow what it says, and then they get frustrated for not finding out what it is saying. It is presumptuous of us to know what it is saying without following it first. To accept our ignorance about it is the first step in finding out what most people are missing. Where warm waters halt is not even that important for it is just another point of direction towards the treasure chest.
        To follow the poem is just to read it and do what it is saying. If anybody is trying to decipher it without following it precisely they will fail every time. RC.

        • RC: “Where warm waters halt is not even that important for it is just another point of direction towards the treasure chest.”

          I’ve read a lot of contradictions, but I have to say, you are the winner here.
          Unfortunately, you will not like your prize.

        • RC;

          It always amazes me that you speak in such positive language, and yet you do not have the treasure

          You say, “The proof is in the poem and is there for everyone to see. ” If this is true, where is the Treasure Chest that YOU have found?

          Then you say, ” The thing is most searchers do no follow what it says, and then they get frustrated for not finding out what it is saying. ” How do you know this? Are you a mind reader?

          Then you go on to say, ” Where warm waters halt is not even that important for it is just another point of direction towards the treasure chest.” If this is true, why has Forrest said over and over how important it is to find the correct wwwh?

          Sorry, RC, you just are not making any sense. Just my opinion RC, take it or leave it. JDA

        • RC,
          Man! That’s a lot of fortune cookie crap to be honest.
          You say we’re in a chess game. Well chess s nothing more than a gentleman’s war game, plain and simple. Are we at war with fenn?
          Poker is a bluffing game. Is fenn bluffing? Fenn has his hand, we are still drawing on ours.
          You tell us nothing more than we are wrong, yet never enlighten us with your profound wisdom.
          You make claims, with not really making any claims at all. We are ignorant, but apparently we have fenn on the ropes. We are on our last move we, just need to get Ali off the rope-a-dope and go for the knock out. << ~ See I can state the same crap as you, only different. Only neither of us are saying anything at all…

          Even your response to Goofy was more fortune cookie analogy and end runs. Personally I don't care what you have to say to be honest. But why bother rambling about how we are so close, yet so ignorant at the same time… Sounds to me like a man / woman just wanting to hear themselves talk.

          "To follow the poem is just to read it and do what it is saying. If anybody is trying to decipher it without following it precisely they will fail every time. RC."
          Really Sherlock?! What an outstanding Epiphany.. why didn't all us idiots figure that one out… Thanks for saving the Day Micky Mouse.

          Oh right.. the proceeding is an Opinion of Seeker and reflects no opinion of the channel you are watching on, the web page that contains it or the view of the owner, moderator, or other members.

          • B Heston…lol
            Fenn has always held the wild card. It’s his game and we are just playing… this isn’t a win – lose for fenn, he’s just sitting at the table watching all the bluffing.

          • Seeker…so very true, but it is an odd coincidence that f refers to the correct solution as “the winning solve”. Seems as usual there is a message in that description.

          • Heston –

            2 – count um two……games to be played. He tells you which ones – one is easy to find and the other is hard to find – but when you find it – you will know it is 100 percent correct. Good Luck.

            I just think that is as true as I can repeat it.

          • Yes I understand there r 2 games, aka solves, that mirror one another. The trick is knowing where they fit together.

    • Hi RC.

      Good thinking.

      IMO – you’ve just help me solidify the “blaze” is the key.

      You wrote:

      Our greatest mistake in the chase is not able to follow orders, commands, directions. Our ignorance about the chase is reflected in our stubbornness not to follow but to lead a way we do not know.

      I agree…we need to let Tenn be the leader…..kick it with what he thinks.

      How do we get there?

      You just helped.

      The blaze needs to be followed….not lead on…you won’t be there if you make your own trail.

      The blaze is about understanding commands….as in walking trails and understanding your surroundings at any give time. In order to follow directions.

      Thanks brother, from a different mother…..good luck!


      • Me thinks some people are getting very close here……..Just wait till you think you are done – your not……………nine moves mountains.

          • LOL….nah spallies…”Tenn” = “Fenn” – it was just me fat-fingering the post and causing a ruckus!!


            But one could actually say there are lots and lots of clues to be had….above and beyond the supposed “nine” situated within the poem.

            Shoot – the blog that has “what we do know” – lists about 10 clues in itself….but I am not here to tell another person what is a “hint” or what is a “clue”. To me – they are both the same…..hint/clue – doesn’t matter – they both contain added details that can help solve this puzzle.

            Good luckl

  33. “nine” clues…
    WWWH cloud nine
    Take in the canyon down – the nine line
    TFTW nine miles
    No place for the meek – cat o nine tails (old sailors whip)

    Not that these are correct…but maybe mark “nine” clues?

    More likely maybe not…but made me smile. Nine times.

    • Eeek Jonsey1 – if I have to deal with a cat o nine tails, I am going to end my searching now.

      My family watched Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade last night and your comment makes me think of the first test/challenge – only the penitent man will pass… at least yours isn’t quite as deadly… maybe. 🙂

  34. One of the few things that remain consistent within this Poem:

    N I N E………….right across the board.

  35. It seems a number of people love to throw this line around:

    “There are a few words in the poem that are not useful in finding the treasure Phil, but it is risky to discount any of them. You over simplify the clues.”

    From an opposite perspective, could one also argue:

    There are a few words in the poem that are not useful in finding the treasure Phil, but it is risky to try using all of them. You over complicate the clues.

    Just thinking out loud and wondering…

    • I’m hopping on this boat JCM,
      Watch out for those that don’t like water craft.

      Lets use every word in the poem to realize we used way too many.

    • I don’t know….it I think in terms of making a pumpkin pie I’d think there a few seasonings that are not required (a pinch of salt in the crust, clove)…but it’s risky to discount any of the (you ARE in trouble if you discount pumpkin, or all spice)

      On the opposite perspective, it’s not risky to include all of them.

      This may not actually be true in the poem, but in set theory, and logic proofs, the opposite view is false. I think.

      • Coincidentelly, it you actually write out the set theory equation on that there’s some funny irony to the added “you over complicate” things. Both literally as turning into an equation is complicated, but also figuratively in the written equation itself and the U etc….somehow I think maybe F knew that, as otherwise it’s an insane coinkydink. Try it, you’ll laugh.

    • JCM,
      You change part of that comment to make the perspective be completely different. Don’t you think that’s force fitting 101.

      For that matter we should change this comment;
      Some searchers overrate the complexity of the search. Knowing about head pressures, foot pounds, acre feet, bible verses, Latin, cubic inches, icons, fonts, charts, graphs, formulas, curved lines, magnetic variation, codes, depth meters, riddles, drones or ciphers, will not assist anyone to the treasure location, although those things have been offered as positive solutions. Excellent research materials are TTOTC, Google Earth, and/or a good map.f” 
      To: ~ Some searcher use head pressure, foot pound, acre feet, bible verses, code, ciphers wrong… some over overate the simple usage of these. So now they will assist everyone to the treasure location.

      I’m not gonna jump on the bandwagon like Jake is. I think the comments are exactly what fenn wanted to say. He gave examples of what others have suggested and stated we are “over” complicating the poem by not needed to know all this stuff.

      I mean, to change this like you did with Phil’s Q&A could means, a structure is still on the table for the location of the chest, because the chest is not actually part of a structure, so it’s not associated “with” a structure.

        • Unless I missed a meaning, assist is to help, [basic] how would a “chest” or a chair or a lamp help a structure?

        • My bad Jonsey,
          I still had structure in my head… you meant the “over” complicated comment.

          But lets go with assist for a minute. Again it means help. fenn told us what he believes to be helpful. The book [TTOTC] GE and or a good map.
          So why would fenn write a second book, yet not once ever stated it would assist in solving the poem? That’s a bit perplexing, when he did say there was a clue… which later turned out to be kicking Canada out of the running for where the chest lay in wait.

          • I got nothin there, just that I think when he made the comment about his eyelids closed but eyes open in the book that was a hint to his choice method of being clever.

            To say none of those things will assist one TO the chest basically says nothing at all. He didn’t say they won’t assist with the solve…they just won’t help you physically get there. Maybe not too. I just feel that all his statements are fun, yet don’t actually logically ever say anything . Reduced to the simplest components they seem always to just say X is X. 99% inspiration/ 1% perspiration.
            He told us WWWH isn’t a dam. But that didn’t assist anyone in getting any closer to the chest either. If they knew where to begin theyd know it wasn’t a dam anyhow. Now they still don’t know where to begin.
            Saying the foot-pounds etc. Won’t assist one TO the chest…it again says nothing. No progress is made. We don’t know what DOES get us TO the chest (car, train, tram, gondola) we just have more empty words….and we’ve read words that have us thinking a bunch of things won’t help with figuring out where to go, when really all he said is they won’t actually get us there. See my problem or am I way off base? I don’t think he ever actually says anything…which says a lot. Who know though. 😉

            Kinda like saying an alligator is not an ingredient in my favorite cookies. No more helpful than saying chocolate isn’t one. You can’t “guess” the right recipe…the possibilities with or without a single item are still infinate. So no advantages in our favor.

          • I get the cookie analogy to your thoughts. I guess I would wonder if what you say is remotely true… example bible verses will not assist you physically to the chest, but may help with the poem.

            Then why read anything fenn says if we can’t take it as a reasonable assumption to mean what is stated. I’ll be the first to agree that most everything fenn states is to make us think. But do we twist it so much it becomes completely warp out of a reasonable conclusion?

            I forget which SB it was, fenn talking about spices and ingredients. It seem harmless and a fun thing to do, and many saw clues poring out of the bottles. But my take on it was… we need to test the right ingredients for our desired out come. What works well and what taste like crap… line of thinking to the poem. So if the gator doesn’t work… at least you eliminated that ingredient.

            So when I read what fenn said won’t assist… I give it to the gator.

          • I see your point totally seek, if the gator doesn’t work sure, you eliminated that ingredient….but if I said “it’s not gator” I eliminate gators yet open up the possibility of exotic animals as ingredients at the same time….so I’m really no closer….or further.
            With the Codes not assisting us to the chest….we haven’t even defined ‘chest’ or ‘assist’….so really does it draw attenion and focus to a statement that effectively says nothing for sure. We’re no better off on potential OR progress. Just diverting our focus.

          • I feel it is helpful here to agree w/ jonsey. There is clearly a gray area concerning what f says. He says there r hints ( not deliberate)in TTOTC that help solve the the clues but won’t aid the seeker find the treasure. At face value this is true but r the hints the correct ones? Case in point… I’ve gleaned “sets” of hints ( placed deliberately to confuse imo)that fit 2 separate locations. Clearly others r finding their own interpretations. So who’s finding the correct solve???…considering in my opinion the the right hints r waaay more subtle.

          • B. Heston – Forrest likes to make mistakes on purpose. Dal has a video on this site where f talks about purposely making mistakes to draw attention to himself, or get a reaction, or to draw your attention to the subject matter. Forrest calls them mistakes not errors. F is a smart guy and he didn’t put the mistakes in his stories for the fun of it. They do have value. Some are easier to spot and some not. He has a way of telling stories that blend those mistakes in like they were meant to be so it takes a keen eye and mind to find them. I haven’t found them all and am still searching.

          • Hear me all…. Same here,believe me. Fenns trickery is boundless and challenges the sanity of all. LOL

          • B. Heston – I’m not sure if you have followed comments made by Zaphod the last few days but he seems to have a very good grasp on things. It’s like f said. Read the book slowly looking for things that stand out. Look for the odd things that don’t fit. It doesn’t mean those things will give you the answers to the poem, but I think they can help with the answers. This is my opinion of course.

          • Yes, I’ve found several of those oddities. They stand out to me instantly and I assure you they lost on me either. Thanx I appreciate the pointers nonetheless 🙂

          • Jonsey, B. Heston, hear me all,
            I wrote a response to all your posts, but it got kicked. So I’m trying again and will keep it short n sweet.
            All the information to fine the treasure is in the poem, the book will help. the hints in the book help with the clues, the clues get you closer the the chest… Is it possible that the clues are not all that is needed to be known? Are we thinking that the clues are the ingredients needed or is there more that needs to be understood other than the physical places of the clues.

            Do the clues reveal those ingredients and this is why just deciphering the location or what the clues refer to even on location, may not be enough.
            We might be overlooking why a clue is where it is.

          • Sorry typo, that should be “find” the treasure and not fine. But that is the point. What do the clues/information lead us to?

      • Seeker – what have you been drinking tonight? Go back and read that when you are sober. 🙂

        While it is just a perspective shift from another viewing angle, I will borrow f’s words and say that I don’t have to believe everything that I say. Yes, there is some perspective distortion that occurs, but is the perspective valid?

        If we are applying and using words in the poem that are not useful for finding the chest and twisting them or using their alternative meanings, is it possible to over complicate the solution and end up with the wrong solution?

        My actual thoughts are much deeper on this one and goes back to the context that this statement was given in. I have yet to see anyone discuss it because most seem to be too stuck on the two sentences themselves and broadly applying them to everything else beyond the context of the Q&A. Kinda like the time when I was a kid and the guy down the street sprayed his lawn with Round-up to kill the dandelions. He at least got credit for successfully killing the dandelions.

        • LOL,

          I think my problem is, I need to start drinking. At least I’d have an excuse for not having any excuses.

          • Seriously…look at the statement about the important vs. non important words. If you literally write out that equation and reduce it you end up with U over C. C actually represents Complex. U represents “all.the things in the set….in this case words. “You over complicate”. Maybe words and scrapbooks are like mini puzzles or brain exercises. They don’t give hints about the poem or chest….but they are fun to solve and help you learn new ways to LOOK at the poem.
            Look at the scrapbook PD just mentioned. Read his definition of “Herbs” and of “spices” then look at what he includes in the “spice drawer” and what he likes vs doesn’t like. It’s a puzzle. But maybe not a bad it to the chase itself.
            Or maybe not but 98% of what I imagine I’m seeing seems to suggest this to me. And almost ALL the scrapbooks are just as funny as that one. Like side quests in a video game. Maybe they just build your skill sets. Lmao.

      • The one thing that gets me in that statement is “those things have been offered as positive solutions”. Really, you mean instead of negative solutions? or bad, not right or incorrect solutions? Those things may not get you closer to the treasure but they may get you a positive solution? I think he enjoys knowing we will pick apart what he is saying, I’m with Jamie on this one, he’s saying something while not saying anything at all. Of course they won’t assist you to get closer to the treasure, that’s what your legs are for. But they can be used in a positive solution. Only my “physical” movement will get me closer, not my mental. I may solve the poem but until I actually move, I won’t be any closer.

  36. Pay attention to detail. The poem is not about being smart,or even learned. This is what I would do: ask a kid who is just learning how to read,and may be he can tell you what wwwh is, but that is not even important for you will not know what to do with it if you do not follow the clues as they are written in the poem. People think I am being delusional but that is okay. It is what it is. The poem was meant to be followed precisely but most people ignore this,and that’s their loss. Some searchers would rather criticize me rather that to listen,and pay close attention to what I am saying. It is the “I know best” attitude that blinds most searchers. I know because I was one of them, but when I surrendered myself to the poem then it came to me. How wrong I was about all the chase deal?! To admit that one’s is wrong about the poem will open you with a new line of thinking. This line of thinking will open the poem like a flower in spring. RC.

    • RC, you are not delusional. When I started searching, I thought I had the right solution and couldn’t understand why others did find it. Then, when my solution did work, I tried again and found another solution and it started all over again. I was right and couldn’t figure out why other searchers didn’t find the chest. Then, after a few months and numerous possible solutions, I finally understand that I should have put my listening ears on.

      • I meant why others didn’t find it. BTW, I haven’t found the chest either. I stopped searching and now I’m back to searching.

    • RC – I find it ironic that you would accuse most searchers of having an “I know best” attitude as you lecture to us all: “Pay attention… some searchers would rather criticize me than to listen… I know because I was one of them … but then it came to me… [It will] open you with a new line of thinking. THIS line of thinking…”

      Please take a step back and consider the hypocrisy in what you are saying.

  37. Zaphod 73491,
    I appreciated your post on the stamps in TTOTC. I like it when individuals post solid ideas. So, thanks! I try to do the same when possible. I had noticed the same thing on the stamps while researching but I have never been able to make any connections to any good ideas. I’m not asking you to reveal any secrets but have you been able to relate them to anything remotely connected to the chase? Just wondering. I don’t know if or when you’ll read this so I’ll check back in a few days.


    • Kanafire: many thanks for your post. I do try to post some good information here, but I sometimes wonder if I’m just wasting my time.

      “I had noticed the same thing on the stamps while researching but I have never been able to make any connections to any good ideas. I’m not asking you to reveal any secrets but have you been able to relate them to anything remotely connected to the chase?”

      I’ve only managed one solid connection between the post stamps and the chase (and perhaps a second, but I’m not yet certain), but like the other hints in the book it is only helpful for ~confirmation~ not discovery. Forrest was very clever with his hints: they are more or less useless on their own, but if you have solved the associated clue in the poem they give you a “warm fuzzy” that you aren’t deluding yourself.

      There is a lot of potential data that could be extracted from those postmarks — perhaps patterns of page numbers, or erroneous days of the week, or corrected days of the week, or the months, days or years (that are legible). He obviously went to some trouble to put them not only in the pages of the book but also in the end paper flaps, and yet they serve no real purpose as far as his memoir is concerned.

      As far as the one solid connection I found (involving the duplicated stamp), it is for a later clue. So if you aren’t confident you have WWWH and the home of Brown yet, I would recommend filing it away as something to investigate later. Good luck!

      • That whole postmark thing is interesting, Zaph. The fact that he uses the wrong days of the week or that he duplicated one of them – good stuff. I’ve never been able to make anything out of them myself. Hardly gave them a second thought, really.

        • I’ve also pondered upon the postmarks, as my friend thinks that they have meaning, but IMO – they have to do with the dates associated to the stories he tells.

          Is this their meaning? Beats me….though it does sound good.


      • Zaphod,
        Thank you for the reply. That is helpful. I have what I believe is a solution, but I need to wait until spring to check out now.
        I must admit though the stamps have me baffled. I have no idea as of yet what to make of them, so I’ll follow your suggestion. Thanks again.


        • Personally my bet is on them being a story in themselves. When F was young in Yellowstone the post master (Donnie’s mom) had a tradition of hanging up postcards that were misaddressed or no stamp or whatever and hence stuck at the office to die. Shed readdress them and sent them on to friends and acquaintances so at least the stories could finish their journey and people would smile as they randomly received a postcard from an Aunt Mert they didn’t even have. Ppl could read them on the walls as well as they say at the bar inside for a soda or an ice cream. I bet F misses times that weren’t governed so tightly as that would be illegal now. So, to me, the postmarks (F said he had nothing to do with the designs) randomly and chaoticly ordered kinda represent the marks on those postcards…stories on their way to be heard. Just like the stories in his book, only that story is not represented in words…then again maybe I just jump to conclusions my brain is a curious mix of gem and gravy soup, so take it with a granule of salt.

  38. What a fine thing it is to read the discussions on this blog. There is an old Mexico and a New Mexico. New Mexico is the only one of the four states with (9) letters in it’s name. But actually I think the chest is in Wyoming. Great analyses in this blog though,—some very good ideas— I just can’t shake the feeling that it’s in Wyoming— since the very beginning that has been my confirmed feeling. Maybe it’s in Montana though, and if not there, Colorado.

    • I think I get the Old Mexico to your meaning. But you said below, New Mexico, because you forgot to add it… oops.
      Why couldn’t the chest be in Old Mexico? If I get what you refer to.

  39. Oh, forgot to add that if it isn’t in one of those three, then it’s probably in New Mexico.

  40. joe the chest used to be in Wyoming – but when every one was a sleep we snuck in and brought it back to nm

  41. Has anyone used mirroring as part of a possible solution? Meaning, applying a solution to a location and mirroring it to another location?

    • Yes, kinda, sort of. Not that I looked for it as such, it just happened.
      Two location that had the same natural event which caused the areas to be very similar… what happened, how it happened, and the outcome in both location. However I should say they were thousand of years apart and only related to one clue… which was needed for another clue to be completed.

        • I got some folks mad at me… so no, nothing new. lol. Are ya gonna make me ask or will you tell what you’ve been up to?

          • Lol… I didn’t put one boot (nor a sandal) on the ground yet but this search almost put me on welfare. I had to work hard to recover, not complaining.

            I took a fresh look at the poem this time and I stop at the 4th line. There lies the dilemma…

          • Oz,
            If that is the only dilemma you face… your better lookin than I.

            I’m still trying to figure out how some decipher the first clues, walked passed the other seven and the chest… and thinking how could that be? A wrong turn, makes for a good movie, but makes no sense to me with the poem.

            It almost sound like … here ya’ll go, I’ll tell you the correct location of all the clues… good luck, you still won’t get it. Not the clues or the chest. Unless you understand something very important.

            That “certain beforehand”.

        • You mean ‘progress’ like moving forward? (Forward meaning the beginning or advancing from the beginning)…I don’t think anyone even knows where to start….we’ve figured out a lot of places NOT to start…which may help by definition with potential…but sadly not progress. Lots of potential around here though…lots and lots of potential…

          • Nice… I guess progress at this point will be if someone came up with a new way to look at it. Or ff commenting on searchers having found 3 or 4 clues…

          • Progress isn’t possible without a defined beginning and advancing ahead of it. (If the beginning is the end then I guess it’ll be a ton all at once) Potential…now that’s possible…knowing where it’s not, having a few clues even….that all moves potential forward….but progress requires the beginning to be known since thats what defines it. Depressing huh? At least we got LOADS of potential though!! Haha

      • Yup, that’s what I’m working with. I started with a solution on the Santa Fe Trail and after hours and hours of researching, came to another location and then it linked to another location. It’s like a video game with different levels and doors. Now, I’m not so green and taking off and searching. But, I found a pattern of hints and now understand why I have to review/analyze the book over and over again. Sometimes, our minds filter out things and until we remove those filters, we can’t see what’s right in front of us. It’s difficult for me to concluded that the nine clues will lead me to the chest because of the poem architecture, definitions and mirroring aspect. So, I’m still struggling to figure out the poem.

        • I don’t know what to tell you that will help Rose.
          It sounds like you found this mirror image while researching… meaning not truly in the poem… so I wonder if seeing this information from outside the poem is influencing you too much. And now you might see things in the book related to the research.
          I dare say I could and have seen relationships to native Americans, fenn’s Father, Air crafts, war, family, old trails, L&C, artifacts, etc. related it to the book. is that the correct approach? Maybe, but I’d be cautious on what turned my head in any direction, if it wasn’t the poem directly. That’s just me.

          You talk about how you worked on, and changed, the poem for many years. As you read it today, are you still completely content with the belief that someone will eventually understand and follow your poem precisely to the treasure?” ~ John
          Thanks John,
          I think your question is wrought from misinformation. I have no real feelings about when the treasure might or might not be found. But eventually sounds too far away. The treasure is there for the person who can find it and I think that person will be positive in their attitude and deliberate in their actions. No one has any secret information that will take them to the hiding place. It’s in the poem for all to see.f

          I read this line in part; No one has any secret information that will take them to the hiding place. It’s in the poem for all to see.f

          To me this says a couple of things, one being research, or outside information collected by a searcher that will give then a head start, so to speak.
          “It’s in the poem for all to see”… say it all for me. So IMO if there is gathering of information or research on the part of the searcher… I would say it should start within the poem… not the book, not a map, not GE, not random googles to see what pops, SB’s, Q&A’s etc..
          If you can say that is what you did? [ poem lead you to the research ] I can see it as plausible.

          • I understand. It’s the mirror on page 254 in the TFTW book. I’m associating the mirror with new and old–but in a geographical way. I’m sure people have found that geography for one area can mirror another area and so on. There are so many relationships to define in the poem. I believe a good map is in the book and it’s different than the one with the different states on it. But, I could be wrong. The pictures/drawings in the book help point us in the right direction. But, this is all IMO and I don’t have the chest and I’m still working on interpreting the poem.

        • Rose. My solution is in Wyoming…not Yellowstone…and relates to more than 10 clues in the poem which strongly imply fishing and canoeing in the initial and final phases (after the TC is located). Canoeing is over 8200 years old. Water levels were much higher then. Warm water transition areas are strongly associated with upstream trophy trout zones. Ignoring the fishing terms and phrases in the poem is probably not wise in my opinion. Find the TC above 1500 meters altitude. Suspending judgement for a time while considering possibilities is a laudable trait. Be safe. Take precautions. Don’t take excessive risks. Tell someone where you are going and when you will return. Mind the weather. Determine WWWH before you go.

          • M, Thank you for your suggestions. I also had Wyoming and Montana in a possible solution, but mirrored the location down to New Mexico. I’m keeping an open mind and making sure my interpretation is solid, before venturing out. I won’t search with boots on the ground during the winter. But, when I do search, I’m in contact my with my family. They know where I’m going and when I should be back.

      • Seeker, he said that someone mentioned the correct two first clues on an EMAIL and then went past the other 7. Well, I am sure ff didnt tell them that they had those first 2 correct, so whoever that was will never know they had them. Others have been close to the chest but they didn’t know it.

          • Exacty… fenn remarks seem to imply he knew they had the first two clues correct, but they might have not known because they didn’t know. I go along with that.
            But they did have them… how could that be when, they were at the correct location? What I mean is… don’t you think that many live and breathe the chase would figure it out seeing the first clues is a must. Ad the second clue and their on a roll… now comes the possibility maybe the first 4? [ yes I understand we have very little to go on with the first 4 clues comment ]

            But why didn’t these folks know they had something and not figure it out, on site, with the other clues in the same area. I say this because of the words fenn used [ a few, several, many, and even more arriving but maybe by aberrations ~ many comments combined] The numbers seem to be growing with each comment and none seem to see or know a critical piece.

            All I can see is they deciphered the location of the first clue or second clue, but didn’t know why it’s so important. That need to nail down the first clue.

            So here’s a thought. The first clue might hold a piece of needed information, not found in the poem as a clue, but the poem may direct a searcher to it after the first clue is decipher. Like fenn said in one interview… in the wood is in the poem to.

            Without knowing what in the wood might mean, the first deciphered clue is only that… what that clue refers to, but not what it stands for.

          • Seeker, when he said ‘they went right past the other 7’ should we take that as they were in the right ‘location’ and then either walk-drove-moved passed it or did he mean they decipher the first 2 clues and did not solved the other seven???

            I agree either way that is a major feat even though they didn’t know some had 3 possibly 4.

          • Oz10: for what it’s worth, in my solution if you solve the first two clues but are clueless about the third clue, you will in fact go right by all the other 7.

          • Hi Oz10:

            “Zap, do you have 9 locations to 9 clues type of solve?”

            No, Oz, in my solution there is not a 1-to-1 correspondence between clues and locations. But I have to thank you for asking me the question because it did not occur to me until just now that my overall solution does indeed have exactly 9 waypoints!

  42. I’m not sure this is the appropriate spot for this or if there’s been discussions already (if so – sorry Dal). I’ve searched around and haven’t seen any info on this. As a clarification, I don’t necessarily think this is important to your solve but it is certainly strange.

    There’s a difference between the poem in TTOFTC and the poem in TFTW (albeit a very slight difference).

    In TTOFTC stanza 5 reads;

    So why is it that I must go
    And leave my trove for all to seek?
    The answers I already know
    I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak

    In my copy of TFTW stanza 5 reads;

    So why is it that I must go
    And leave my trove for all to seek?
    The answer I already know
    I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak

    The difference is in the 3rd line – answer vs answers. Again, I know this is a small difference and may not mean a thing, but I find it strange. It probably is a typo as I know Forrest published very quickly after the book was written, but it seems a bit out of character.

    Anyone have any input on if this is a hint, clue, or merely a typo? My thought is a typo, but what are your thoughts?

    Sam H

    • Hi Sam – someone brought that to Fenn’s attention awhile ago and he said something to the effect that both versions worked; we should choose whichever version we liked. Someone else might be able to get you the exact quote.

    • The only difference I can find between “answer” and “answers” is a sad tail to be told.

    • Question:
      Mr. Fenn,
      After locating the Blaze in the poem by solving the clues, and having been led to the chest, I was disheartened to learn that there are two different versions of the poem. The version found on The Thrill of the Chase Resource page online shows:

      The answer I already know

      While the version published in your memoir reads:

      The answers I already know

      Based on the way the clues are solved to this point, it is obvious that every word and every letter are crucial. I was hoping you would be able to clarify which version of the poem is correct. Should the word answer have an S on the end to make it plural? Pehaps this one letter has no bearing on the final solution, but it is something that continually weighs on my mind.

      Hope all is well!

      Fenn’s answer:
      It makes no difference, one of them is only an innocent typo. You can pick which one. f

      • Thanks for the help – I assumed this was the case. Now off to the other 9,999 things to contemplate.

    • Hi Sam,

      Most people know that I am trying the anagram method to solve the puzzle, and so an extra letter usually would make a large difference; however, in this case the letter is an “s”, making a singular noun into a plural.

      For me, this was actually a helpful hint, because I inferred the resulting anagram also has a noun that can be made plural without affecting its intended meaning.

  43. As far as “Too far to walk” goes I’ve explained it before—but no one will listen to me. “Too far to walk” = “Owl took a raft”. Was he wise to do so? I really don’t know. LOL 🙂

    • Hi Joe,

      After several years of mucking around I think I learned one of the rules of this game: don’t publicly share any anagrams of the lines in the poem whether you are kidding around or not.

      It’s not my rule, but I think Forrest doesn’t like it at all and doing it might prompt him to say “don’t mess with my poem”.

      It’s just something that I think I noticed. But also you are making me a bit nervous in case you come close to one of my final results (although I have no standing to tell people what to do or not do).

      • Muset— Noted, and thanks. I was joking—but I do understand what you are saying—and will take it to heart.


      Searchers…10200 feet (3100 meters) is the accepted medical definition of high altitude minimum safe threshold

      Altitudes above this threshold can easily adversely affect healthy people during short or long exposures without supplied-air (oxygen) respirators.

      Being a fighter pilot, it is likely that this maximum altitude was given by FF for this reason.

      A question is: Why was the 1500 meters (5000 feet) minimum altitude decided upon?

      Also, Might the TC be close to this lower altitude? Might this clue be more insightful than it appears? Why not say 5K to 10K feet altitude boundaries?

        • IMO – I’ve worked a few solves on paper that show the elevation to be below 7000 feet…..

          I’ve also noticed on these solves that the elevation you start the quest is at a much lower elevation, but still above the 5000 mark.

          Does that mean one needs to stay above 5000 feet in order to even have a chance?

          Good luck!

          • I too have recently visited a place that was very close to 7900 (7800 and change) Thought it was just to much of a coincidence and fit a very plausible solve. Nothin there so far but I plan on sniffin around a little more. I’m curious about your spot because reading some of your past comments seems to fit my search area. Best of luck all the same.

          • cptstevo;

            email me at SculptorJDA at aol dot com if you want to compare notes. I search in Wyoming, not in YNP JDA

          • Cptstevo;

            Some people have trouble with AOL. Please try again, or give me your email please. I can ask Dal for your email address if you tell him it is OK. JDA

          • JDA,
            I did not receive your email. Well, I suppose I will know if you find what you’re looking for. Best of luck JDA. Who knows maybe I’ll catch ya out there somewhere.

        • yup, start is at 5500 feet. I think it’s a place where he bet his father, or other way around. When he shot his first meadowlark. “alpha bet”, started age 8. Started chase at age 80. 80-08. The place is where his father was proud of him…

          • okay, I worded that wrong, didn’t start his chase at age 80, you know what I mean. Started this chase…

  44. IMO,
    My thoughts on how some have solved the first two clues and gone past the other seven.
    I don’t think solving one clue automatically leads to the next. If I had hidden a treasure and wanted to make it difficult to find I would leave the clues in order but not necessarily in such a way that solving one gave you any information on the next clue. I think this is what FF did. I believe that you can solve 8 clues and still not have ” indulgence” until the 9th clue is correctly solved.
    Just my opinion. But, what do I know.


  45. I wonder if the people even realized they solved the first two clues or if they just told FF where they were and he assumed they got there by solving the first two clues. Kind of like being within 500/200 feet and not realizing it. He said he knew they were this close because they told him where they had been. Could these be the same people?

    • He did say they “mentioned the clues” in where their travels took them not “offered them as solutions”….

  46. i read there was a early draft of the poem. saying look quickly down beyond the stones, take the chest but leave my bones..
    does any one , know the full version of the early draft of the poem ?

    • No one except Forrest knows what the first poem looked like…Except that Forrest told us what the last two lines of the original poem were. You have the last line almost correct but the second to last line is incorrect…according to what Forrest has stated…
      The last line was “but leave my bones alone.”

      • Dal,
        You stated above “Forrest has told us what the last two lines of the original poem were.” Could you provide a link for this or post those two lines in their entirety?
        I had heard him say “but leave my bones alone” when talking about an early draft in an interview but was not aware of him talking about TWO lines from original poem. I’m very curious about this.
        Thanks so much for having this great site and sharing what you know with everyone! It’s an invaluable resource for information and a great community!
        WY Girl

        • also i read . ff original plan was to just walk into the desert. with the chest . as far as he could . then lay down with it.
          untill some one found it and his bones ?

          • Richard,
            Can you find the link to where you heard this or read it? I would love to see it and it would be so helpful if you could provide a link or at least send me in the right direction to find that interview or article where he talks about this.
            WY Girl

          • richard-
            His original plan was nothing like that and all of this has been discussed on this blog ad nauseum. Please do some research and you will find precisely what Forrest told us the last two lines of the poem originally were. You will also learn why Forrest wrote the poem to begin with and where his original intended spot was located…
            By looking for this info yourself and by reading what’s on this blog and in Forrest’s books and on his website you will garner a great deal of valuable information..and enable yourself to make your own decisions about fact vs fiction….
            Don’t look at the comment section as a place to get quick answers…but rather as a place to learn and discuss…

          • Yes, I remember that comment too, and it has stuck with me. Water, canyon, woods, desert. Interesting. The Bighorn Basin is considered a desert, but the elevation is not high enough.

          • Dal,

            When did Forrest ever declare his original spot, before he beat cancer and changed the poem? I do not ever recall that piece of info.

        • Dal,
          I have spent the last 3 years doing just as you suggested to Richard regarding researching this blog, Forrest’s blog, Forrest’s books, the poem, the books, your blog, Forrest’s books, the poem. I’ve read all of the above multiple times with the exception of some of the archived stuff on your blog. I’m a bit tech illiterate and can’t figure out how to access some of the archives on my iPad. I have a bit over 2000 hours of research under my belt in the last 7 months or so (since I felt comfortable starting up again after Randy went missing) and 3 botg this search season.
          I must be having a brain fart because for the life of me I can’t remember where Forrest talks about the last two lines of an earlier draft of the poem. Was it during the Moby Dickens Q& A session? I think I remember him talking about “but leave my bones” but I don’t remember him talking about TWO lines there but I very well could have missed it.
          I will go back over that Q&A but if you know of another place he talked about it could you give me an idea where to look.
          I’ve been trying to join in the discussions now that I’ve read as much of the site as I can get to on my little pain in the butt old iPad. I’m a quite shy person by nature and computer chats don’t come naturally to me but this is such a great community and information packed site that I will overcome my penchant for sitting quietly at the edge of the circle and make an effort to have a chat and share and learn 🙂
          WY Girl

          • Bravo WY Girl!

            I, too, am naturally shy, yet dare to boldly venture outside the virtual box of formality, normality, and conformity (but mostly sanity) ..just like my Uncle Dr Spock did before me.

            Will you marry me WY?!
            (I very seldomly ask that question btw – ask anyone)

            (he deftly searches his recently acquired ‘Elvis’ business cards for a quick Vegas wedding venue, but quietly hopes that Audrey will soon arrive, fashionably late, via Fed-Ex)

            (he quickly forgets ‘whats-her-name’ and, with naive optimism intact, frantically pays in full, for the ‘twelve minute’ wedding option from the first visited website)

            ( ..he wisely uses his brothers credit card)

          • Ah, Hobbit you make me swoon. I’ve secretly had a crush on you since I read about your fabulous adventure to my favorite park and I was raveingly jealous of Audrey the whole time. I’ve always had a thing for kiwis. But alas my own knight in shining armor has already swept me off to sin city and made me his bride. If only he were as passionate about the thrill of the chase as I am life would be the perfect fairy tale come life. 🙂
            Don’t give up hope Hobbit, Audrey may yet show up. In the meantime please keep making us laugh here at hoD:)

      • Dal,

        I too have been on here for something measured in years at this point and I don’t recall Forrest telling us what the last TWO lines were originally. I definitely missed him telling us the original spot as well. I recall the “…my bones alone” but not the next to last line. Enlighten me. What was “But tarry scant with marvel gaze” originally? When I put “my bones alone” in the search on the blog it returns “No Hoax Folks…” That’s it. I would hardly call that “ad nauseum.” Perhaps there were posts deleted on that topic as well?

      • Hi Dal/others – Forrest has said different things about the final line of the 4th stanza at different times. In the November 2, 2013, talk at Moby Dickens Book Shop, he says, “And the original version of the poem said, ‘Take the treasure chest, but leave my bones, and go in peace’ or something like that. But then I got well and ruined that story.” It’s just beyond the 15:00 mark in this video link:

        • Zap,
          We can assume he meant stanza 4, however he never stated where in the poem any line was changed or moved etc.
          In this video fenn also said “So it was 15 years from the time that I got cancer [ which we have been told was around 1988 ] till the time I hid the treasure chest. [ that would place the hiding around 2003 ]… I don’t have the other comment at the ready… but fenn also said he hid the chest when he was 79 or 80 [2009ish] with the book release in 2010.

          I personally commend fenn for keeping comments as straight as he has over the years… but I do allow for opps… So did fenn mean stanza 4 or could he have meant the end of stanza 6? Maybe go in peace was the ending of the poem at one time. We don’t really know and he has never stated as far as I recall. He is trying to recall things over a 20 year period, and have told us he wrote many versions of the poem. Heck, go in peace could have been anywhere in the poem at any time.

        • Yes, Seeker, quite true — the line or lines could have been anywhere in an earlier version of the poem. I get why people are curious since no matter where that line about the bones was in the poem, our current line 4 of stanza 4 would no longer exist, which means the rhyming line 2 (Look quickly down, your quest to cease) might also have been different in the earlier version.

          • Hey zap….you are correct.

            But earlier renditions can give a seeker a glimpse into the mind of FF when he was formulating the poem.

            Does the final solve have something to do with “rocks”?

            Interesting enough, and very recent, someone just stated “Tarry scant” has to do with “tar-covered flat rocks”.

            Did FF remove or change the line, because it gives away an additional clue on the location of the chest? With this removed from the poem, does it confirm that the location has to do with the “rocks”.

            We just don’t know, but can crawl into a rabbit hole and wonder if we choose.

            IMO – I like the idea that “tar-covered rocks” was what FF was thinking when he wrote the poem, and then realized that it was too much information, so he cut it out.

            I guess I will know if that was true or not, if I find the chest.


            Cheers and good luck!

          • Zosorocks;

            Tarry = Blackish in color, like tar.
            Scant = a stone that is flat pn at least one side, like a grave marker.
            See pic’s TTOC pgs 95 & 99. JDA

          • You don’t have to reiterate it to me….as I have had this as one of my clues for 2 years ago……so basically I have been looking for a river bed with black stones…..very hard to do in GE.


            I have even incorporated that the “creek” is probably not as dry as some may think, but could be a spawning ground for frogs.

            We all know FF and his love of frogs…..why not use them indirectly int he poem. It seems possible.


          • I would even have to imply that a nearby tree may also have some sort of marking on it.

            I say this because most people look forward and then look down.

            Forward to see where they are going, and then down after they have arrived at the spot.

            “Tarry scant” could have the simplistic meaning of a quick look…..maybe towards a “marked tree”, and then “look quickly down”.

            It seems to be logical as well.


          • You say, “Did FF remove or change the line, because it gives away an additional clue on the location of the chest? With this removed from the poem, does it confirm that the location has to do with the “rocks”.”

            It is still there, just hidden from plain view, or so I think…

            But Tarry Scant with marvel gaze, = Simply stare in awe at the blackish colored flat rock.

            Just my opinion. JDA

          • Hi Zosorocks & JDA: it will probably come as no surprise that my “tarry scant” has nothing to do with either tar or rocks, or skedaddling. Those two words aren’t even a complete clue for my solve. But kudos to you both for coming up with alternative ideas for those odd words!

          • I believe Forrest tagged them the last two lines of the poem…
            “Take the chest and go in peace
            but leave my bones alone.”

  47. I’m sure this has been discussed before but has anyone given much thought as to why there seems to be such a distance (not far but too far…) between the first clue and the final resting place of the chest? Why not just tell us about the general location of the hiding spot? I know every search has to have a beginning and an end but why such a distance? What is he trying to tell us or have us experience by following the clues? I myself feel like the first few clues may be very personal to him and play into his biography so that the searcher could experience the man that lived long ago. It’s as if he’s taking us on a tour of the places and activities that meant so much to him as a person young and old. The places that built him and gave him his personality and stature. I admit my insight is biased because this explanation fits into my solve. I just figured it might make for an interesting discussion.

    • Hi Jonny,

      I agree with your thinking. I think the finder who follows the clues to the end will have experienced all of the activities that Forrest enjoyed in the Rocky Mountains.

      Probably that is the whole point of the nine clues– nine activities.

      • Hi Muset,

        Thanks. IMO there just has to be a reason why the searcher travels such a distance. Although I have a search area that I feel good about I’m just kinda stuck with the poem and am trying to figure out some other logical line of reasoning that will get me closer. Happy hunting!

  48. “But tarry scant with marvel gaze”. Today I looked up the definition of the four words. I noticed that the definition of tarry ( when pronounced Terry) means to stay in a place A LONG TIME. The word “gaze” means to look at something for A LONG TIME.

    To combine tarry with scant is very unusual, and almost doesn’t make sense. To combine “visit” or “search” with “scant” would make sense, but not with tarry.

    JDA could be correct that the pronunciation should be “tarry” as in tar covered rather than “tarry” as in stay in place. I am re-considering this very carefully as it could be important.

    • Joe,
      Tarry means to linger, yes? it kinda matches ‘terry’ in your research. And as you mentioned Gaze means to look at something a long time. Now add scant as; small amount, little etc.
      Is the line saying; linger a short time gazing at something? and maybe the reason is we need to see what is needed to be seem in a limited amount of time to view it.

      The real question is, what amount of time is scant? 1 hour in a 24 hour period could be a scant amount of time. Twice a year to 365 day can be as well. 5 – 10 minute in one hour etc.
      Can, Look quickly down be a line of sight? Sure it can. Could it mean to “settle in” and watch as well? [ Look means gaze, quick or quickly means smart, down can mean to put down or settle in.] I’ll leave that thought up to you. Point being… perspective and interpretation needs and understanding to explain what we need to know. Is the understanding here; If you been wise and “found” the blaze, or found to discover… what is it we discovered?

    • Joe: the problem with the tarry-rhymes-with-starry assumption is that Forrest has never pronounced it that way when reciting the poem.

      • Zaphod—-If Forrest gives himself license to make up new words, or use them incorrectly when writing, what keeps him from pronouncing them intentionally wrong when reading verbally? Just a thought.

        • I 100% agree – To pronounce it as TARry would give it away, and with marvel gaze would make little sense. When using it as TARry, the sentence structure needs to be reversed….at least to me it does – JDA

  49. Just to add– this meaning of “tarry scant” could refer to a very old, well but worn road.

    • It could also mean a little bit of driving (on blacktop – tar) with marvel gaze. As in – enjoy the view while you are driving a short distance on tarry roads.

  50. Meant to say well worn, or eroded by the elements— very little tar or asphalt remaining.

  51. Dal,

    You posted

    “I believe Forrest tagged them the last two lines of the poem…
    ‘Take the chest and go in peace
    but leave my bones alone.'”

    LOL. Shouldn’t that post be in moderation? I thought quoting Forrest without supporting documentation was frowned upon on this site. Where specifically has he said that?

  52. Dal,

    Thanks for posting the original last 2 lines;

    “Take the chest and go in peace
    but leave my bones alone.”

    I find these lines very interesting. I don’t want to get anyone off track and I know the rest of the poem could and probably would have been quite a bit different at that point in time – but if someone attempts to plug these into the poem – it has some interesting consequences.

    “Peace” doesn’t have very many words that rhyme… cease, grease, lease, geese, etc. Therefore, I have to assume that his rhyme would have been “cease” as it is currently in the poem.

    It’s a similar story with the word “alone”. There are not all that many relative words that rhyme.

    Ok, so if we assume (dangerous I know) that these 2 lines plug into the 4th stanza a lot of things would need to change.

    Stanza 4 of the poem:

    If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,
    Look quickly down, your quest to cease,
    But tarry scant with marvel gaze,
    Just take the chest and go in peace.

    Now, trying to plug in the original lines….

    Look quickly down, your quest to cease
    Go turn over that tar colored stone (lol – pick whatever you’d like that rhymes)
    Take the chest and go in peace
    but leave my bones alone.

    Ok, Ok, I can already hear the don’t mess with the poem comments (and I agree), but assuming that those 2 lines would have stayed in the poem AND that they would have been plugged in stanza 4… what happened to the blaze?

    I get it – the lines with “Blaze / Gaze” certainly could have been plugged in anywhere…. but maybe the fact that the specific words in the poem changed many times lends to the belief that we shouldn’t be focusing in on the exact word (sorry anagramers / code decipherers), but maybe we should focus on what Forrest meant by the word. That sounds familiar……

    Maybe thought provoking at best, but what are your thoughts?


  53. I too question some of these early draft comments. Ive never read or heard any of these comments attributed to Fenn.

    I’m especially interested in -beyond the stones-

    Can anyone confirm or reference -beyond the stones-?

    Thanks, Emmett

  54. Look quickly down your quest to cease
    Please don’t mess with the poem
    Just take the chest and go in peace
    And leave my bones alone

    • Look quickly down your quest to cease
      Please only do as you’ve been shown
      Just take the chest and go in peace
      And leave my bones alone 🙂

  55. Put in below the home of Brown….

    Here’s my current conundrum;

    If memory serves me correct, I believe that Forrest made mention something to the effect that if someone found the hoB they could walk over and get the TC…. I also believe he made mention that searchers may have solved the 1st 4 clues.

    Can we then deduce that hoB isn’t one of the 1st 4 clues? Hmmm… so is hoB clue 5,6,7,8,9, or is hoB not a “clue”, or is there a break in the above logic?

    • Sam;

      If memory serves me correctly, what Forrest said was more like, If I were to show you the hoB, you would be able to GO directly to the treasure. Not a quote – just a disabled memory. The implication between what you say, and what I remember is that there is some distance between the two.

      Possibly someone can come up with the exact quite – pdenver perhaps?

      I think that to assume that hoB is NOT one of the first four clues is a mistake. I personally believe that it is clue #3.

    • Sam H: I wouldn’t get too concerned about this HoB response from Forrest. My recollection is that Forrest was responding somewhat flippantly or sarcastically to a reporter’s question about what home of Brown was. It was as if Forrest was saying, “Geez, if I told you that you’d go right to the treasure!” I would not assume that home of Brown is necessarily very close to where the treasure is hidden.

    • The quote in question comes from the HDNet story by Jennifer London. About 10 1/2 minutes into the video after reading aloud the second stanza of the poem, the reporter asks, “Who’s Brown?” Forrest replies “If I told you that you’d go right to the chest!” I can’t vouch for the link since my work firewall prevents going to it, but I have it as:

      Perhaps someone can listen to it and say whether Forrest sounds serious, sarcastic, irritated, amused?

  56. I believe this Forest Gets Mail was back in 2012…
    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”?
     Forrest responds-
    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

    So here am still pondering to what FF means by a clue to a hint. Anyone else riding this train?
    “The treasure chest certainly is in the mountains somewhere north of Santa Fe, and that is a clue”… “ other clues I have given but are not commonly known are:… But those won’t help much.”
    The last part of this Q&A [ e-mail ] reminds me of the useless clue debate. For those who may not know of this [ useless clues saga ], they may want to research to find out.
    But what peeks my interest is mountains N. of SF. “And that is a clue.” This piece of information is in the book, so would this be considered a hint? Or an actual clue? This one piece of information doesn’t seem to be an eliminator, like most “clues given after the fact,” but actually tells us what we later were told… the Rocky Mountains… and seemingly moves us closer to the chest.
    Other than the name of the mountain range, is there a possible reason why fenn only mentioned mountains and not specifically which mountains, and could this be an important needed clue and/or can there actually be ten clues [ pieces of information ] needed?
    Useless clues. Not commonly know clues. Chasing horses. Little Indy with just the poem and a map of the “US” Rockies. Confident with just the poem and no background information, major clue in tftw – Canada gone [ along with half the Rockies ]… Is this the important possibility fenn refers to? The know where to start, start at the beginning, don’t dwell enough on the first clue, many ignore the first clue…
    As I have gone a lone in there and with my treasures bold… possibly be telling us, the “mountains” N. of SF is the clue? And have a connection to hint of riches…
    Few are in tight focus of a word that is key… tight focus, marvel gaze, eye – I, and where I has gone alone.
    Other than where the chest lays in wait, why is knowing the RMs are the mountains, considered a “clue” to fenn?
    This train’s next stops are confusionville, clues station, hints place, and N. of SF. The lounge/bar car is now open.

      • Please be sure to get a recent tetanus shot. Staying healthy is your number one priority!


        • it’s a real cocktail…but I’ll take a tetanus shot just in case. And I do love them rocks….if you get my drift.
          The “indecision…” quote from TTOTC answers any doubt that Forrest hid the chest close to when he says he did. IMO added just for the hardliner types that might disagree because they can…

    • That was my question back in February… When he says Canada gone is a ‘major clue’ does that mean is one of the 9 clues in the poem or just a ‘freebie’ clue?

      it is easy to say that the poem is a reflection of Fenns’ life and there is some of that but ‘what if’ none of it refers to his personal life or experiences in relation to the chest??? a thousand years from now, can someone just read the poem without knowing the authors’ background and solve it?

      • Oz,
        Sure, a 1000 years from now or even 10,000 years from now…lol.. all they’ll need to do is google it, right?
        I can see an archeologist digging 20′ down and find the remains of a lap top and wonder, How did these primitive ancients survive?
        I’m not sure if the poem is related to fenn, or at least the first three stanzas.

  57. He likes to keep us sitting on the fennce, filled with suspennse—I think somewhere we need to make a choice and run with it, At least that’s what I am beginning to see. 🙂

  58. i believe ” put in below the home of brown ” is the point where one transitions from their vehicle to their feet.

      • I’ve always thought that “put in below the home of Brown” to be a direct and precise command by F to place boots on the ground at this point.

        I think that most seekers will agree that “below” could mean “south”, this it is a clear direction to go.

        If I were to “put” (myself) “in below” (south) “of Brown”, it seems logical that one needs to be “botg” to move further, considering the next clue is about a place that is meek, which clearly is the forest.

        IMO of course….


    • I certainly thought HoB was the transition point from driving to walking… until I found the blaze and realized I was wrong.

      • Hi Zaphod,

        I have a question to ask you. In terms of figuring out clues and ultimately locating the treasure how critical is the content within the book, TTOTC? In other words, assuming you’re on the correct path and figured out one or more of the clues in the poem, how necessary is/was it to use content (other than the poem) found within the book?

        • Is it really a chase if the TC is not moving? The thrill of the chase TTOTC is in finding and catching a fish which goes through different feeding moods as the fly hatch changes in it’s life cycle. An artificial tied fly which caught fish the day before may not work the next day because the molting fly hatch may be in a vulnerable spinner phase and the trophy fish are gorged early in the day. Waterlog the fly and float it through the fish mouth and he still won’t bite. Be in the right place at the right time. NFBTFTW refers to where and how you PUT IN your craft to cross the stream IMO.

      • Hi Reiteri,

        “In terms of figuring out clues and ultimately locating the treasure how critical is the content within the book, TTOTC? In other words, assuming you’re on the correct path and figured out one or more of the clues in the poem, how necessary is/was it to use content (other than the poem) found within the book?”

        The short answer is “not at all” — at least for the first four or five clues. There is an extremely subtle book-hint for the first clue (which precedes WWWH) that I didn’t even find until months after I had my WWWH. So clearly it was unnecessary. Similarly, the multiple book hints for WWWH are not at all critical, and of no use at all unless you have already figured out WWWH. I also solved the NF, BTFTW clue long before I found the For Whom the Bell Tolls and “dumb” hints, and in this case the hints don’t tell you anything about what BTFTW actually represents.

        I haven’t found anything in the book yet that I could construe as a hint for home of Brown. There are multiple hints in the book for the blaze, but just like the earlier clues those hints are of no help for figuring out what/where the blaze is. But once you have the blaze, the hints are practically screaming at you.

        So to summarize, the book is just as Forrest has said: you don’t need it to solve the poem; everything you need is self-contained in the poem. But it’s nice to have the book hints after the fact because it’s Forrest’s subtle way of letting you know you’ve figured it out.

        • Well put zaph.

          I agree with your last statement.

          …and bring along a good map…..


        • Zap: “I haven’t found anything in the book yet that I could construe as a hint for home of Brown.”

          There are refs to brown in the book & some aberrations as well that you may want to check out.

          You have done a lot of research & are probably closer than most here, but you may want to consider looking at Brown as brown.
          Maybe the man just made a mistake or error.

          • Hi Jake — yes, a number of references to the color brown (e.g. the “heavy brown color” on the tail of his britches from sliding down the iron fire escape). But I haven’t found anything specific that could match ~my~ home of Brown, not that I’ve been looking that hard. Once I had the blaze, I no longer cared that much about the home of Brown clue. Btw, for my home of Brown, the capitalization is appropriate. Cheers!

          • Zap: “I no longer cared that much about the home of Brown clue.”

            Do you not think HOB is important?
            I personally don’t think it’s all that important either.
            As long as you have the right canyon down & WWWH it really doesn’t matter.
            I think the only one that knows HOB is Forrest.
            You just have to know where to “put in”.

        • Zap,

          I like your thoughts on the subject, I have always struggled with hoB. Is it an intentional error? Was it placed within the poem as such, to throw us off a little?
          Grammatically speaking only, I have a friend I went to college with that is a freelance content editor for magazines, books, newspaper articles, etc. She said something interesting to me, if we were to look at the poem as grammatically correct, then hoB could only refer to a person or place as it is capitalized and at the END of the sentence. If we assume that it is grammatically correct then it could never be a brown trout, brown hawk, brown bear, etc as they would only be capitalized if they started the sentence.
          As FF originally said that all you need is the poem to solve the clues then the reader would have to take the position that given all of the time he took to write it and he said he looked at from all angles, then the reader (searcher) would have to assume that the grammatical layout in the sentence is intentional and does matter.
          I pose this statement as for many years now following this blog, others and all of the news clips, a lot of folks believe he is referring to brown trout or the like. I myself, admittedly go back and forth on it within my own solve area.
          What are all of your thoughts on this, as I would be interested to hear others opinions on the subject.

          The Sleep Hollow Bard

          • Bard: I’m in agreement with you that the capitalization does not favor the interpretation that Brown is being used as an adjective. So not brown trout, or bear or beaver, etc. But I know others insist it has to be brown trout because of Forrest’s background, and so they tend to handwave the capitalization.

          • Wouldn’t it be funny if the 9 clues are 9 intentional errors in the poem such as Brown, halt, listen good, etc. ?

          • Forrest said he graduated high school only because his dad was the principal. Large brown trout is only one of nearly a dozen phrases common to fishing and canoeing in the poem. Consider all those phrases coincidental or unrelated if you want to but I believe you will lose FF’s intended context of the poem in that action. The context of the poem is the key to understanding it IMO. Google
            “Blue Ribbon” and “Trout” together if you want to find GPS coordinates for the area WWWH.

          • I agree TSHB, that Brown is capitalised for a reason, whether it be a person or place name, and doubt it would be a grammatical error on Forrests part.

            The big question on my (hairy) lips is, is it a really famous person or place name, or merely some quiet old lady living next to a river?

            I assume that Brown would have to possess some historical longevity though, given that it might be a thousand years before the TC is found – but not so famous perhaps, as to be too big of a clue.


          • Begin it where [TROPHY FISHING PHRASE]
            Take it [CANOEING PHRASE]
            [CANOEING PHRASE] below the home of [FISHING PHRASE]
            End is ever drawing [CANOEING PHRASE HEADING]

          • jeez zap, that was just a bit too easy ..oh wait, I get it now!

  ’re not “actually” gunna tell me where your blaze is, are ya ..!?

            ..even though I can sincerely promise, hand on heart, that I was gunna give you ALL the treasure.

            (note to self: quickly cancel the order for the new Ferrari’s)

          • Do you consider proper grammar, in a poem, having to be proper.. for “interpretation”? The capitalization might be an indicator of something that is always capitalized, yet brown is not the name of what the clue “actually” refers to. Put in below the home of Brown is a clue, not the answer.

            The real question here is; If you “know” what hoB is, why do we care what wwwh is? This seems to imply that we don’t need to know canyon or to far too walk as well… or is it more to the fact… if we don’t understand fully what the first clue is… it wont matter how many clue you deciphered, you still will not “Know” how to solve the poem correctly.

            Nail down the first clue or stay home… is this clue just simply a starting point and/or a must need to understand?

            Can ho-Brown be a word that is key because it’s an indicator more than it is an answer? Does a poem that is designed to find clues, decipher those clues, find answers to the clues to get a desired outcome, need to be proper grammar?
            Lets face it. This is not “important literature” its not assigned for academic purpose… it’s designed as a challenge in a treasure hunt. Are we over thinking it?

          • Seeker,
            Why use punctuation than?

            May it be more for reading the poem so one can “listin good”?

            Is there more to hearing to poem than reading it?

            Is that why we are told to read it over and over because eventually we will read it out loud?

          • Count,
            You might be using Listen in the wrong context. So hear me all and listen good… may not be related to sound[s] punctuation, rhyming, etc. but more to understanding. Like when your parents told you; don’t do as I do, do as I say… line of thinking.

            The other point is to, fenn himself and is writing style. He has told us many things about how he views other writings, and he changes things up… bends word that are in the dictionary, twist the meaning of a word to make it work, misspell words deliberately… even has told us… many don’t see the poem the way he does etc etc.

            The point to the capitalization in the end of the sentence, may be, more to whatever this clue refers to is. Maybe it has been, and will always be Capitalized. But the word “brown” is only a clue to the answer we seek… not so much word brown itself.

            The thought here, is about the answer not the the clues.

            If I capitalized Football as a “clue,” that would be improper to use at the end of a sentence. But if it was “meant as a clue” or part of a clue… To capitalize it as an “indicator” a possible usage [ proper or not ] because the “intent” is the show the answer must be capitalized…
            Such as, the desired answer to be, a name of a football team…. lets say the Giants … but you need to figure that out, and not just me telling you what it is.

            So the punctuation [ the period ] is to end the sentence… imo… giving this clue to be a meaning or clue of its own. How we use/interpret it as such, is another thing.

          • OK Seeker,
            When did he say or infer this: “even has told us… many don’t see the poem the way he does”
            Even though I would have to say it’s true to a certain point but would like to know where & when he said it….

          • Jake,

            “Somebody could find it tomorrow and it may not be found for a thousand years. I’m looking at the big picture. A lot of people who are searching for the treasure don’t see it the same way I do. I would love if someone found it tomorrow but if nobody found it for a hundred years, that’s okay with me too.”

            You will need to do your own home work for when and where… my best guess… was a video. I don’t keep time stamps, as I never believed there is any correlation to when a comment is made to solving the poem.

            You might also keep in mind that this is not the only comment regarding; Thousand of years… big picture… don’t see it the same way I do… I’m looking a hundred years down the road, maybe a thousand years down the road. People don’t understand that… and many others.

            Read them all, make up your own mind… and of course, dismiss what doesn’t work for your solve… That majority rules thing.

          • Seeker,
            Your wording & his wording doesn’t match.
            He didn’t mention the poem.
            I believe he was talking about the amount of years when someone may find it which I think is a crock. He’s getting everyone riled up by saying 1,000 – 10,000 years down the road. He knows how to press peoples buttons to make them go look for it.

          • On Amazon you can get the kindle version of Freud’s “The Psychology of Errors.” I believe FF has used Freud’s method of “intentional slips.” The lecture also tells you how to determine what is the truth. F and Dal just illustrated it perfectly a few days ago.

            The ebook is 99 cents, for the one with seven lectures in it.

            It also talks about the ways dreams and wish fulfillment work, and I believe F also used this in the book to provide a big, big hint.

            If you don’t want to buy the book, I’ve highlighted a few areas (but not the way to find the truth) in a thread on CC.

          • Jake,
            Your response says it all. And why I added you can dismiss what you like.

            You think the many times fenn comments on down the road all are crock of crap… you consider the quote i gave as not about the poem because the word poem is not used… you obviously didn’t take the time to look at the video or auto or find where it was from, you also did use common sense to relate the quote with all the information in the quote said…he was talking about the poem.

            As I said, you can dismiss what does work for your solve…your not alone in doing so.

            I find it laughable that you asked in the first place… when you already knew you would dismiss just like the down the road comments.

          • Seeker,
            It’s obvious now that everything the man says is not what it actually is, but how he remembers it & that’s fine considering that sums up all of us.
            I never said “all”.
            You have a tough time reading & understanding what I say for some reason.
            If I am not clear (although I was) on something I said, you can always ask me to clarify as I do with you & others instead of jumping to your own conclusion.

            I asked the Q to you because I may have missed something & now I know the only thing I missed is your sorry attempt to summarize what he said.

            BTW, you don’t dismiss anything he says?

          • Seeker: you may be interested to know that your conjecture about Brown being capitalized not because it is actually “Brown” is spot on (at least in my solve). What Forrest’s Brown actually refers to is something that as a proper name should be capitalized.

          • zap: “What Forrest’s Brown actually refers to is something that as a proper name should be capitalized.”

            I must have missed the inside info from Forrest zap.
            When did he confirm this?
            Maybe you can share the details.
            Do you think this is one of the 9 clues?

          • Hi Jake.

            IMO – FF would use proper grammar, this correctly use a proper noun for the clue.

            I now believe this is a clue and represents a famous person named Brown that lived in the state the chest resides.

            So far my “hoB” connects well to my solve, so I would imagine that there can be only so many a but holes I can go down before I find the correct one.


          • Tim,
            I don’t think Brown is a famous person that lived there. It would be too easy to figure out & why would you need any of the clues before HOB if there are any.
            I’ll just look for this famous Brown & go from there. Doesn’t make sense to me.

            Brown could be a person & maybe he lived there in one of the 4 states but it also could be where he was buried & that is his home now & for many years down the road.

          • Once again, all of my words I post are just avenues of discussion that one could take.

            Trust me…I have other solves that include other “hoB”… bring a grizzly bear regions/habitat – “home of Brown”.

            And interestingly enough…I also have another that when reached to this point, is the same region as my other solve.

            So there are multiple solves.

            I also have another solve using the “hoB” as the Madison.

            My point being was that I also used a micro/macro look at the ffirst couple of clues using GE and then moved to a more closer view when the others take place.

            And yes, there is a famous Brown, an adventurer, fur trapper, and other notables – that could very well be a reference to “hoB”, that I have used in my solve.

            BTW – and not to give to much info out….
            This “Brown” – did a lot for parks and rec.

            Yet another connection to FF, if many I have to this one particular region.


          • No Jake, I don’t dismiss what fenn says. I try to understand what he is saying. Does everything he says relate to the poem? In most aspects it does, even if it’s simply common sense and need explanation for those who don’t have common sense. Not in a grave yard for example… because idiots were digging in graveyards. Seriously, does someone need to be told this? Don’t go where a 79 year carrying a heavy backpack can’t. Are we going to allow little Sally and Johnny to dive head first into six feet of moving waters, or build a makeshift raft from dead rotten limbs and try and cross the Yellowstone river on it.

            But when the man says… folks ignore the first clue, don’t dwell on it enough, looking for later clues is a waste of time, folks don’t see it the way he does… Yes I think about those and more.
            Do you remember the day when many measured their solves by the 8. 25 mile comment… yet nobady knew for a fact where the “northern point” was, before the next comment came out years later?
            Or how many knew all the had to do is decipher the first clue and they be rolling in gold?

            Yep, I take notice, and attempt to understand what is being relayed. Don’t get me wrong… I don’t believe fenn is handing out “clues” like candy on Halloween, or secreting message to me and placing them on the blogs for fair play or sending me e-mails telling what the first clue is or any clue for that matter… That’s all for the book writers that claim they solve the poem or will show us dumb folks how to do it, and big ego types that can’t think they got anything wrong, and the their solve is correct. That list is growing exponentially, even after many failed attempts.
            So again, just to make myself clear Jake, I’m still in the stage of understand how to understand what fenn is attempting to relay. But hey, good or you that you know what to dismiss as crap. because I don’t.

          • Jake, my post clearly said “in my solve”. If a statement is attributable to Forrest, I quote it. Forrest isn’t giving any more hints, and as far as my hints are concerned you are under no obligation to believe them. Eventually the truth will come out, and then we can assess how close or far off my remarks were.

          • Really?
            Don’t you think we should just stick to what we think the 9 clues are instead of saying what you know is fact when it isn’t.
            I didn’t come here to listen to someone gloat on & state “No, Jake, *I* know it’s a hint.” zap.
            There’s lots more but I would like to get back to the post.

          • Is this helpful to new searchers zap?
            “The fact is, that poem line is not what people think it is”
            No disclaimer of your opinion.

            I think TF,BTFTW holds no clues & should be taken at face value unlike your fact of the matter statements.
            There’s more but I will spare you what you have already stated as fact that isn’t.
            Take your assessment’s & read them again from the bottom up so you your lips don’t mislead anyone – but – yourself, if you get the point in.

          • Zap,
            I’m looking at hoB from many angles. One could be hoB is the location of the chest… if we take fenns comment to actually mean… if I told you what hoB is you’d go right to the chest. I could also say, fenn was blowing off the reporter not to give a direct helpful answer and could have said the with any clue asked about. I could even suggest that “put in” may imply, all the above IN the poem is below hoB, because this sentence stands on it own. There are many ways to read into it. The best part of trying different reading is… we may find more clarity to the actual understanding to the poem.

            I leaning towards what the clue refers [ hoB ] as an answer to the clue, That might be something that is require to be capitalized.

            Oh! and Jake you posted ~ zap: “What Forrest’s Brown actually refers to is something that as a proper name should be capitalized.”
            I must have missed the inside info from Forrest zap.
            When did he confirm this?

            Did you miss or dismiss the part where Zap said “(at least in my solve)”??

          • Seeker said: “Did you miss or dismiss the part where Zap said “(at least in my solve)”??”

            No Seeker, you missed where he stated it & it doesn’t surprise me you missed it.
            Why don’t you read it again so you’re not so confused.

            zap said: ““Brown” is spot on (at least in my solve).”
            You see the punctuation’s?

            (at least in my solve).
            This line had nothing to do what he stated as fact afterwards.
            Read & understand before the knee jerk.

          • Zap, didn’t mean to step on your toes… We must have been type at the say time.
            At least I saw … in my solve and understood it was a thought process your looking into.

          • Jake, I am not going to pepper my posts with a bunch of silly IMOs when everything posted here is obviously just someone’s opinion (other than Forrest quotes). But it is not just my opinion that the For Whom the Bell Tolls initial letters match the But To Far To Walk letters, nor is it just my opinion that those same 5 letters are the initial letters of words surrounded by one of the many instances of “dumb” in TTOTC. Those are facts. It is my educated opinion that that’s a hint, not an accident. It is your choice to ignore statistics and the thousands-to-1 odds that it’s a random coincidence. Similarly, I offered my opinion about the capitalization of Brown based on my solve. Obviously if you don’t think I have the right WWWH, then my opinion about HoB is worthless. But if you suspect I might have the right WWWH, then perhaps my hint is at least worth putting in the “maybe pile”, especially considering I have demonstrated my pattern-matching abilities with NF,BTFTW.

          • The “fact” of the matter zap is you use that word to freely.
            It is misleading as opposed to you just spinning your web on this blog.
            Fact is fact & you obviously don’t know the difference between fact & opinions.
            That’s a fact.

          • See zap,
            The statistics are another problem that you post.
            We really don’t know all the details of your stats you post & you expect us to believe you calculated them right & to trust them.
            Stats are just a number created by the one who thinks they have the right numbers to begin with.
            So if the start point of the numbers are wrong, then the whole stat goes out the window.

            zap said: “especially considering I have demonstrated my pattern-matching abilities with NF,BTFTW.”

            Well your abilities to demonstrate & pattern match are no better or worse than anyone else.
            But we don’t know that for a fact.

            The jury is still out.

          • Jake, don’t you think that if I were running afoul of Dal’s rules, I would get quickly admonished by Dal or Goofy? That said, could some of my strong opinions get misinterpreted as facts by newbies? Sure, I suppose so if they based their opinion on the first couple hundred posts they read here. But let’s be honest, no one is going to give away the farm here, so I think your concerns about any tyros being led astray by posts here are a bit overblown.

            I know you think I’m blowing smoke or drinking my own Kool Aid, and I suspect anything short of my showing you a picture of the chest will not dissuade you. My posts are not meant for someone who is already predisposed to disagreeing with me on everything. They are meant to persuade any neutral party into considering the possibility that there is something to what I’m writing. Eventually, one of those people may discover the answer to the NF, BTFTW clue, having the same Eureka moment I did, and perhaps they will share that moment on this blog.

          • I’m glad you understand somewhat zap,
            It’s good for you to take a step back & realize where you are wrong.
            It takes deep thinking to know you are nothing more than the sum of others.

            As far as a Eureka moment goes, it’s nothing more than a vacuum, so suck it up & empty your bag every now & then so it doesn’t clog our lungs here.

            If I had a buck for all the Eureka moments here & there, I wouldn’t have to search for the treasure.

            Have fun & keep drinking Jones Koolaid.

          • Jake, I am a space scientist by trade and a successful cryptanalyst by hobby, so I deal with probability, statistics, number theory, celestial mechanics, astrophysics, and a host of other complex math subjects on a daily basis. Explaining how to compute the odds of a particular letter pattern appearing requires way too much math for this blog. You can accept my calculation as reasonably accurate, or compute it yourself, or ignore it. I think anyone with a reasonable grasp of probabilities would agree that the odds of a match are long, without knowing exactly how long. Pull 5 tiles at random out of a Scrabble pouch and write down the letters. Put them back and repeat until you match those 5. You’ll be at it for quite a while. (This is not a true comparison to the problem at hand since the overall occurrences of letters in English are quite different from the occurrences of letters that start words. But it will at least give you an idea of the rarity.)

          • Well zap,
            Sounds like to me you are over qualified for the task at hand.
            Maybe if the chest was in orbit, you might have a chance.
            BTW, it doesn’t matter who you think you are, but who you really are.

            So now there are 10 times more galaxies than previously thought.
            Seems like the projections & stats based on the numbers they thought were right, were wrong & they are wrong this time as well & time will tell as usual & we will be wrong again.
            The fact is we don’t know & that is the point on the assessment.
            I will tear you a new assessment tomorrow when the 9 clues align.

        • Inquisitive Middle-Earth denizen: “jeez zap, that was just a bit too easy ..oh wait, I get it now!’re not “actually” gunna tell me where your blaze is, are ya ..!?”

          That was cruel of me: at the very least I could have admitted it’s more than 66,000 links north of Santa Fe, and go one better and say it’s at least 60,000 links south of the Canadian border.

          ” ..even though I can sincerely promise, hand on heart, that I was gunna give you ALL the treasure.”

          Oh, well if *that’s* the case, then I can be a bit more forthcoming (smiles)! Most people know I’m only considering Montana, so (big surprise) my blaze is there as well. This “blaze” is much, much larger than a breadbox, it has existed for millennia, and barring a cataclysm will continue to exist for many more millennia. A better clue: It is doubtful that anyone that posts on Dal’s site has ever been to it, and I have no intentions of ever going there myself.

          • Two-headed Alien Space Adventurer:

            thanks again, for re-defining my search area down to less than four squillion square kilometres – that makes it so much easier.

            I shall confidently use my brothers credit card to re-order my much anticipated fleet of Ferrari’s, with the absolute knowledge that the TC is almost within my grasp.

            I will generously gift you a new small Hyundai sedan, given your overly-precise admission of where the TC is to be actually located.

   blue ok?

          • Oz10: negative on -115.18158. I’m curious how you chose that longitude? I don’t see anything interesting along it in that small fraction of Montana.

          • Most inquisitive of Hobbitses (I believe that is the correct plural?): happy to have “helped” reduce the size of your search box.

            “I will generously gift you a new small Hyundai sedan, given your overly-precise admission of where the TC is to be actually located.”

            A point of clarification here: weren’t we discussing the blaze? If my solution is not completely half-baked, Indulgence and the blaze are sadly not colated — though I suppose they won’t be a problem for you since they are both within the same 4 squillion square km.

            “ blue ok? ”

            Hmm. We Betelgeuseans, having evolved around a red giant, do not see that well in the blue end of the spectrum. Do they offer the Hyundai in blaze-appropriate infrared?

          • Oz10: no, afraid that’s not it. The Lolo National Forest is beautiful (I drove through it last year), but how did you ever come to settle on this specific location? I don’t see any poem clues that would put you here.

          • That is just one of the 4 or 5 different locations within Montana that I have considered. There is one clue on the last stanza (the way I understand it) that pointed me to the treasure state in the first place. I thought it was interesting what you said about the blaze, even though for me is not on the map.

          • Oz10—- that is interesting. I saw something on the last stanza that points to Montana also—–but a lot of other clues seem to point elsewhere. It will be very interesting one day to see where everyone was going with this thing—-there are so many variations, and a lot of coincidences. But it sure is a lot of fun.

          • Joe, yes it may be an aberration but is the only one in the 4 states (if I got the right meaning).

  59. All,
    IMO, “Put in below the home of Brown.” has two meanings; IMO, neither of them is to begin the BOTG search there. (Although, just by accident, that is near where we (self and kids) began our on-site searching.)
    Also (to stay on topic), IMO, many hints have at times been referred to as clues; the “not in Canada” hint being a good example. IMO, a searcher who defines as clues only the 9 clues in the poem, and who thinks of other useful information as hints, will be less confused. (And believe me, I know all about being confused.)
    “Have flashlight, will travel”

  60. Also, IMO “Put in below the home of Brown” is a necessary clue, and the capitalization is correct.
    And, IMO, as implied by “My Thrill of the Chase book is enough to lead an average person to the treasure”, the “not deliberately placed” hints are as important as a map, a flashlight, and a knowledge of geography.
    “Have flashlight, will travel”

  61. After recent WW mentioning not enough attention spent on 1st clue, and still the threads track right back to HOB and blazes. Another recent comment about not knowing the 1st clue for sure until discovering the treasure has hit home…this concept rings true for my theory. I believe the first clue is catamount to understanding the whole…

  62. My Grammar is very proper and she told me in a dream the darn thing’s in Wyoming, so I’m sticking with that.

    OK this completes my use of very stupid puns for the week.

      • Going to back that up: 🙂 .em nevig ev’uoy selims eht deyojnE. .kcos ym ni eloh a ot evah I !nraD

        Should read: Darn! I have a hole in my sock. Enjoyed the smiles you’ve given me. 🙂

      • jest a wonnering… how many millennials ever darned a sock? … or even know it as something other than a polite expletive, or know what that wooden ball with a handle is in granny’s sewing basket. I feel very, very old, Darn it.

        • I have, then it became so much easier just to go out and buy a new package. Never used anything else. Now you’ve got me curious as to why you posted ‘something other than a polite expletive.’ I’ve never known any other meaning than what I learned it as. I’ll have to look it up.

  63. I had an interesting revelation after reading responses from people to my last post regarding email correspondence I had with FF where he answered me back and stated that no one can tell him the EXACT location of the chest. In my post on this thread I made the error of saying I asked FF that if I could give him the EXACT coordinates of the chest would he tell me if I was right or wrong. I actually never mentioned to FF anything about coordinates since coordinates are not part of my solve. I simply stated if I could tell him the EXACT location. Some individuals on this thread stated that the reason FF made that statement was because you cannot give EXACT coordinates because coordinates are ever changing, I agree with this. So if coordinates are ever changing would FF use this as the solve to his poem? What if 50 years down the road when somebody finally solves the poem and follows the “coordinates” they are a mile from the original location?

    • Hi greg – I’ve done my fair share of surveying, esp. in rural areas that others would faint at the thought of treading, so will say this,

      1) coordinates are only precise if they’ve been obtained, proven and expressed precisely

      2) coordinates don’t mysteriously change position, they remain relative to the origin (known reference points) of whatever national geodetic mapping system is current (unless those ref. points all shift simultaneously, but let’s not go there.. )

      3) Google Earth is much more approximate than it is accurate.

      Forrests comment is certainly interesting, but maybe he is playing with you, insomuch as, you cannot possibly give him EXACT coords, unless you are at the EXACT location of the chest in the first instance.. (?)

    • I deal with coordinates in my line of work and I can tell you that coordinates do not change.

      What does change, with time, is declination. This change is due to the ever moving magnetic pole(s).

      That said, this is the reason why the declination lines on forrest’s map aren’t accurate now. But they are accurate for the time/date that the map was created

      • I will agree with you Rich,
        But it also seems like we are splitting hairs depending how many years & geo activity.

        I don’t think there are any hidden coordinates in the poem for the simple fact everyone knows he was a pilot & would be one of the 1st things to try.

        • I completely agree. Knowledge of coordinate systems is specialized and I’m pretty sure f stated that no specialized knowledge is needed.

          • Agreed Rich,
            No special knowledge, no Latin, although I see it thrown out here now & then by veterans.
            I’ve got a good code solve for ya.
            Never mind, maybe the poem is straightforward…..

        • Jake, Yup, imo no codes. I believe the trick to cracking the poem lies in definitions of words, grammar and unlocking hidden hints.

      • Rich: it all depends on how you define the coordinate reference system. If it is tied to physical landmarks, then it ABSOLUTELY changes over time. (Just consider land on either side of the San Andreas fault.) If instead the system is tied to the stars (or better yet distant quasars) then the *coordinates* will remain accurate to extremely high precision for millennia. But that’s not the sort of coordinates that we humans deal with.

        We deal with coordinate datums. Everybody loves their GPS units, and they assume that the coordinates provided are sacrosanct. But Forrest grew up in an era when GPS and WGS-84 didn’t exist, and none of the maps he used would have yielded coordinates that agree with a modern GPS set in its default mode. Many (most?) USGS maps use the NAD27 datum, and if one were to blindly accept a NAD27 latitude and longitude for a Waypoint and plug it into their GPS, upon navigation to that location they would find they were displaced many tens of meters from their intended spot. For instance, in Yellowstone National Park I think the difference between the two datums is more than 50 meters.

        So as far as coordinates go, the devil is most certainly in the details.


      In Poetry Page VIII, I think Jonsey1 probably found the Robert Frost poem that FF must have read prior to writing the poem about the house of Brown. In my opinion FF is telling us to persevere like Farmer Brown when his clothing was caught by the wind and blew him 2 miles down into the bottom of the icy canyon. It also gives new meaning to “worth the cold”. We may need to climb out of the bottom of a canyon on a meandering “stock trail”. I do still think that WWWH and House of Brown etc etc is related to trophy trout fishing.

      Is this Frost poem the consideration that noone had mentioned yet that FF referred to?

      • Mensan- what’s most interesting about that poem, specifically, to me, is the way frost moved around its placement in the table of contents in several editions of the book. He was a perfectionist and obsessed with “getting it just right”. The forward, dedication, you may find interesting as well. Same as Catcher and one of Fs books as well . The Willy-nilly Slide is the only poem I focused on in that book, aside from the table of contents. Cool stuff there….I had put it in the poetry page back a year or two ago on this site and there’s some neat comments if youre interested can you go back and look, just reposted cause there’s so many new Ppl since then I wondered what they thought.

        • *I just looked back and looks like the Frost kick started on Poetry page One and Two in 2014…LOTS of cool tidbits in there. I highly recommend reading Mindy’s post she linked above as well. She did an awesome job of summarizing everyone’s thoughts. Lots of info there.

          • Thanks, jonesy.
            Brown’s Descent and some other Frost poems seem to resonate with the poem clues. Pretty cool stuff.


            Thanks again Jonsey and Mindy…The above is a succinct summary of the poem…I liked the bit in the poem about Winning Master of the Grange..My dad loved Frost among others and quoted him to us. I do think the TC may well be near the top of a fairly precipitous deposition slope but that’s just me.

          • Sloane wrote a book called Mr. Daniels and the Grange. It’s a good read with some amazing sketches and neat history behind moving the home later. Reminds me of F relocating some artists homes.

  64. Seeker—- I was reading a bit of the discussion above between you, Jake and Zaphod about hoB and other grammatical issues. I noticed in your posts that you say “fenn” without capitalizing his name. Is this intentional? I believe it would be Fenn if I am not mistaken. Just curious. Thanks.

    • Is that all you got from the postings Joe?
      Have you noticed fenn signs with a lower case F… consider it a tradition and leave it at that.

      @ wildbirder, Maybe I should paste fenn face on a doll – plaid shirt and sporting a cowboy hat, create a small-scaled TOTC book, add a horse with a saddle… place it in a small suit case and carry it with me on all my searches. Would that show enough respect?

      Has the discussions become so stale we’re spell checking typing habits, and making accusations and innuendos.

      • Sorry seeker. I was making an attempt at humor. The discussion had to do with whether brown should be capitalized or not.

        I noticed you weren’t capalilizing Fenn. Just thought it was funny. 🙂

        • I got what you were saying Joe… I’m not without humor.
          It was the follow up post, that you ‘unintentionally,’ brought on. So to be honest… I wanted to nip it in the butt before other innuendos followed with the same.

          • And I always thought that the saying was, “Nip it in the BUD” – not not nip it in the butt. Just shows how little I know I guess. JDA

          • JDA— the correct term is “nip it in the bud”. The term “nip it in the butt” is used mainly by pit bull terriers and a few other aggressive smaller dogs.

          • Hi JDA — there are a lot of idioms like this that people frequently get wrong: baited breathe, butt naked, beckon call, piece of mind, for all intensive purposes, statue of limitations, peaked my interest (I’ve since this one here on HoD), mute point, hunger pains, hone in on, spitting image, and chomping at the bit (another one I’ve seen here) are some of the more common errors.

        • I also wondered about “jump up & down on my hat” in BJ&HPA. AN action often used by characters in old comic books & Sunday funnies, or, Mexican Hat Dance reference?

          • zaphod,
            I think people flub the spellings of some terms to be humorous.

            Slang changes with the times, and who in the 21st century uses the word ‘champing’?

            (and what’s wrong with ‘spitting image’?)


          • Hi Randawg,

            “Slang changes with the times, and who in the 21st century uses the word ‘champing’?”

            Yes, language evolves, new words come onto the scene and old ones go extinct from disuse. And sometimes stupid words come into existence out of ignorance (e.g. irregardless).

            “(and what’s wrong with ‘spitting image’?)”

            Here is a case where the misheard idiom has actually overtaken the original (“spit and image”), even though the original makes more sense.

        • OS2,
          Are all used by fenn in one form or other. Similar in meaning as; something that raises attention… whether a warning, direction, or even an emotion, depending on its usage at the time.

          What I find interesting is how this style of writing may relate to the poem itself, Such as the IT’s.

          “Take it in”… Is this actually saying a physical track or a view or even calling attention to something?
          Whereas; ” From there “it’s” [ it is ] no place for the meek” seems to imply IT to the place or clue reference of.
          Could “begin IT where” have the same style of writing to mean something slightly different… maybe the same as… beaconing / beckon… a calling to.
          ~The sounds of the mountains calling me, beaconing me, beckon me.

          Another words; could warm [as an emotion] relate to Begin it where…Take it in, as the same… viewing what is calling us or fenn… and still be the first clue [ written in a poetic manner ] While clue two is the staring point [hoB] to see what is calling. [ of course that only would work if you have your clues set up the same ~ two sentences with two answers ]

          Fenn stated; searchers deciphered the first two clues. He never clarified they deciphered them in the correct order that the poem refers them to, nor that both clues are physical places.
          Fenn could have easily stated… searcher deciphered the first clue [ and still have the same impact ]… Was / is there a reason why he may have stated both, first two clues?

          • Geeze Seeker, I love your depth, when I can follow you. But too often my eyes glaze over with your wordy, confusing delivery. Can you hone it a bit? Organize your thoughts or sentences for trudging minds like mine? I have no idea what you mean after “Whereas…”

            Also, ‘it’s’ (with apostrophe) means ‘it is’….. Without the apostrophe, ‘its’ is the possessive. I had to look that up recently because I’m sloppy and forgetful. Seems that many adhere to ff’s ‘not worth knowing’ quote and disregard the “small things matter’ quote. It may affect their detection abilities.
            IM confused O.

          • OS2

            I get IT OS2… At times, I expect what I say to be easily understood because we have talked about ever aspect of the poem, book and after the fact comments.

            I tend not to think of one particular mode or method or thought process…
            When I review all the information we know of to date, [ in my head ] it seems completely straightforward, when I post a comment.

            Did I just say that out loud?

  65. FF said to follow: “Clues in consecutive order”, but he never said they were written in order.

    I think the first clue is the first line: “As I have gone alone in there”,
    which I interpret as: ‘Had been there before, hid things there as a kid’.

    Definitely one of the 9 in my mind, but not a clue regarding where to start.
    My opinion of course.


      • Not exactly. I think he says “You have to know wwwh. You have to know the first clue.” Or something very similar to that where there’s a possible distinction between the two.

        When he says it that way, it’s possible he’s saying you have to know BOTH of those clues.


      • I’ve just listened to part of the interview and Josh states Mr. Fenn told him the first clue is the most important–Begin it where warm waters halt. I do believe Mr. Fenn told him the first clue is the most important, but wonder if it’s Josh’s belief that “warm waters halt” is what he believes Mr. Fenn meant. I can’t see Mr. Fenn telling him what the first clue is. He does tell us that we need to know what the first clue is.

  66. in indian language they have a saying for someone who tells lies……they speak with “warm waters”

    • ” There comes a time in every rightly constructed boys life when he must run off in search of some hidden Treasure”


      I sent this to my wife a few months back…..Didn’t help much 😉

      • Hey Joe
        Not to be mean but take stuff like that with a grain of salt until they back it up with facts…
        If you don’t you will for sure end up on the path by the wrong information..

    • Hey Gary on,
      Where did you find that at? Which Indian Tribe would that have been?

    • I read that in Native American quotes the saying is as such:
      “Listening to a liar is like drinking warm water” – Unknown Attr.

  67. the banana is the chest, the banana tree is the opportunity and the train aint no locomotive.

  68. Forrest,
    Thank you for the critter story, I think that I understand why you posted it.
    Hope you are feeling much better and getting outside a little…IMHO

  69. I think I may finally understand why some people think there are 10 clues. Interesting and that might explain some things. Hmmmmm…

  70. Maybe our problem is we have no “searchers discussions” category dedicated to Stanza one….. a flagrant oversight, though ‘dedicated’ seems to have no authority here either.

    Perhaps ‘gone alone in there’ means a crevice wide enough for only one man to enter… like that crevice in the Lewis & Clark chapter that was only wide enough for water. Would that span be taut or tense? A crack, a slit, a split? Does ‘in there alone’ have context only as a mental image, or does it have words we haven’t thought of? Buster Brown lived in a shoe… there is a good measure, a breath of scale. Inhale. What else have ya got that will expand your chest or grease your girth? Exhale.

    Use your words… they say so much.

    • What if the first stanza is a metaphor for his autobiography he put in the glass jar and put in his chest. He says a piece of him went in to the chest. And the story “no place for the biddies” Where he talks about the kid that waved that glass olive jar in front of his face. What was that about any ways? Always stood out to me as odd. There a few references to jars in the book. I just couldn’t every really tie anything together.

      • JW, I kinda interpreted that John Charles (JC) raised his arm with a jar of olives as a peace reference (an olive branch… branch=arm) …. all the kids on the law lined up with little oval faces like olives in a jar…. ‘green’ olives. Fenn bundles his metaphors like those Russian dolls…. Russinan kachinas?

        • OS2, I like your reference about olive branch as an offering of peace. So, I’m thinking “Just take the chest and go in peace” refers to take the chest and go into the olive jar to get his biography. This may have been discussed before, so if so I apologize for being redundant.

          • Anyone (well not ‘anyone’) who finds the chest will go into the olive jar… but if the poem is about finding the chest, the olive branch has part of the exterior route (root), no?. Why spend a whole poem clue on something inside the T. box?

          • OS2,
            “Why spend a whole poem clue on something inside TC?”
            Two thoughts: First thing that came to mind was to make sure you get into the olive jar first as there may be important instructions as to what needs to be done to establish ownership in there as well as the autobiography. I’m thinking that you may be pretty dazzled when you open that chest and opening the olive jar is going to be secondary to looking through everything else.
            Second, it may not be a considered one of the nine clues, then again it might be. Maybe just a little push to get you to do what needs to be done. I think all of us have wondered about the olive jar incident. It’s just strange and f does ask two questions of the reader in that paragraph. “Can you imagine that?” and “What was that all about anyway?” It’s always struck me as something important but I never put it together until this discussion. But of course this is all just my thoughts. No idea if it holds any merit.

          • Good thoughts WY, I do think the jar is very important, but I think the first thing a finder will do is mark the site, grab the goods, and high-tail it out of there …. heart pounding and wondering if he will get home before the heart attack.

            Defending ownership (unless caught in the act of finding) comes sometime after returning the bracelet to ff. But thats me, maybe not everybody.

            Do you imagine yourself reading the jars papers while still at the hidey place? If I found ff’s bones there, I think I would leave the box and the bracelet with the bones, and maybe the jar and a coin… for the next finder.

          • OS2,
            Definitely do not see myself going through the chest on site, but would think I would look through it a bit as soon as I got the chest to safety and I don’t think the first thing I would grab would be the olive jar. I think I would choose to leave that until later to savor the story. In fact I had thought to leave it sealed and be presumptuous enough to ask f for a copy of the autobiography. I’m one of the supporters of leaving the treasure intact if at all possible. But maybe that jar needs to be opened sooner rather than later, before you get to far away with the chest.
            I have thought a bit about what I would do if f’s bones were there. I honestly am not sure I would continue the chase if f suddenly went missing. I think I’m a bit of a wimp when it comes to human remains. I know f would probably call me a sissy if he read this and say you shouldn’t let something like that keep you from grabbing the opportunity. Even though he gave us permission to come rob his grave it still feels weird to me. Please don’t get me wrong on this I am NOT casting judgment on taking artifacts. Mummy Joes cave was an extremely important find for getting a really good look back at people of the region and that’s just one instance of disturbing a grave. If other people don’t have a problem with it go for it. Just me personally it kind of freaks me out.

            Well that was kind of a tangent 🙂

        • OS2, extending an olive branch, is the first thing I thought when read it. It’s funny though how he explains the jar in detail.

          A place for the meek?

        • Del monte- maker of olive jars with a green lid.

          Del monte+rocky mountains

          Brought me to “John Charles Fremont” a pioneer/Explorer of the rock mountains.

          O what a large ball of yarn we must unweave just to get through the door.

          • Thats interesting…. are their other references in the book or poem that confirm a Fremont element? I think we have to look for patterns.

          • Hi Jonsey1… Thanks for the offer, but I just can’t roller-skate on your grass. My wheels get all stuck with mud.

          • Ok Jonsey1… On reread, you got me a wee bit interested. The 1943 steel has a dinky ring to it, and the cathedral allusion seems awfully remote. How does a straight sided bottle get a name like that anyway? I’ll keep an open mind, but I’m not taking my skates off.

          • Os2_ the name derives from its neck length and shape. F described the bottle in the book. I don’t remember straight sided in the description….but certainly is straight sighted as in historically accurate description 😉

        • OS2…in the book F mentions that the olive jar was one of the thin necked ones that looked like they put the olives in one at a time. When I researched the olive brands of the times (and their jars) I found one specific brand marked on the bottom of the glass and one specific bottle or “cathedral jar” as they were called. JC waiving the Cathedral jar at F may be a literary allusion. Could be just writing to make the book enjoyable, or could relate to the poem….but in real life at that real time in history you’ve got the “brand” on the literal cathedral bottle if that helps any. You’ve also got a JC in his school yearbook you can view at ancestry dot com or other places in sure.

          • Also interesting is how the bottles were displayed and given out at Christmas time on huge displays…at JC Penny’s… whose founding family has an interesting history with the town they lived in. And JC. And the olives. That were in der jars. I’ll let you tie it all together. Hopefully there’s a 1943 steel one somewhere the box lol

          • You’re talking about place-packed olives, which were more costly due to being hand-packed one at a time (usually pimentos out to attract the eye) in the correct position, rather than “thrown” olives, which were simply dropped into a jar. Here’s a pretty good description:

            “Thrown olives are stuffed olives which are dropped into a jar by a machine as they are packed, rather than being carefully placed by hand. While this distinction might seem petty, some people are willing to pay more for placed olives, olives which are carefully oriented in the jar so that their stuffing faces out, creating a more even, attractive look in the jar. Ultimately there is no difference in flavor between the two, although placed olives tend to be more expensive because of the manual labor involved.”

            The careful place-packing was done by women with special tools, who had to handle and place every single olive into the jar with speed and accuracy.

            There are some great pictures at the bottom of the link below showing the women at a factory in Brooklyn doing place-packing, and perhaps having packed the olives that Forrest and his schoolmates may have eaten:


            The tools are pretty interesting. This is at the Mawer-Gulden-Ennis factory. I’m sure we all recognize the name Gulden…

            Although originally done by hand, place-packing machines were developed later, and there are patents on them. I’m sure that there are a few places left in the world, perhaps Spain and Italy, or boutique brands and/or ornamental jars, where olives are hand placed.

            The cathedral jars are beautiful, but I don’t think that’s what Forrest was referring to, and they were generally from a much older period. On page 16 Forrest says that the jars were “long thin jars with a green lid”, which are still conventional to this day, and which are visible in the picture in the link.

            In any case, Forrest has on numerous occasions referred to bringing things into order, including taking a jumbled drawer of flatware and neatly placing them in perfect order, as demonstrated in the scrapbook. He expressed his great displeasure with the jumbled phone cord and flatware disarray…

            And the poem, which after all “is an architectural plan”, is quite orderly as well.

            “Can you imagine that?”

            John Charles Whatever

            I mean Halogetter

    • OS2— In regards to the first stanza, I’ve found more things there than in the other parts of the poem. It’s tying them all together that ‘s giving me fits. lol 🙂

      • Sparrow, I think so too, but it has such broad definition …’rich & poor’… ‘treasures bold’… etc., I think the two prose paragraphs bracketing the poem must couch that stanza in some way. — the fat stanza reclines on the banco waiting for the water to warm.

        I’m still workin’ on it.

  71. Thought I would throw a question out there….
    Any thoughts on the possibility that “heavy loads and water high” describe the blaze?

    • To me, and this is just my opinion; Heavy loads = the chest and treasure. Water High = a waterfall. The waterfall = the blaze, so yes, no. JDA

    • Hi Friend.

      If you read the way the words are written int he poem….the seeker should have already found the blaze, so that would indicate the HLaWH “clue” is a directional point in the poem.

      I’m also one to believe that “the blaze” is the correct path/trail to the chest…..not some “special attribute – be it a sunlit rock, or colorful set of trees”, although I have considered such, while using GE, and did discover a grove of trees that had leaves red in color, but was the only group that looked like this within the area I was seeking.

      Sooooo….is the “blaze” something special….I guess I really won’t know it until I figure out the previous clues.


      • To understand the “blaze” better, picture Liza Minelli, backed by Van Halen, and she is literally singing the Pythagorean Theorem in 17th century Danish, while standing on a stool made of wood from Andorra.

        At least that is how I have come to picture it after 3 months of exhaustive research.

        • Sparrow,
          I don’t understand.
          Did you possibly mean to write “19th century Danish” instead?
          “Have flashlight, will travel”

          • Oops, I get the reference now. (However, IMO, searchers may also run into 19th century Danish along the way.)
            “Have flashlight, will travel”

        • Sounds like Bjork, only different. She wears a very cool crown like headdress in her performances. Signature move, so to speak.

    • Anything is possible, it only depends on how you read the poem. Some people think it is a physical object and others don’t. How will you describe a ‘heavy loads and water high’ that can also be a blaze?

    • The poem says “found the blaze”. So you should know what you’re looking for before you get there. Here’s a hint:
      I would like to know if the blaze can be found during the day without a flashlight. “I would say yes.f”
      I read this as: Eye wood; (say and yes are almost perfect letter mirrors of each other). So possible mark in a tree. If you have ttotc, it tells you what it is and where to find it…IMO

    • Hmm…I’m thinking you may be correct. At least to do everything the poem is telling you…..
      We do know that f has played by his own rules and has said why should we follow the rules everyone else has set (paraphrased). I don’t think we have to lie, or cheat or steal or do anything underhanded, but breaking the rules, yes, it’s a good possibility.

    • “Break the rules” – The question is, which rules? Societies rules? Forrest’s rules? The rules of grammar? Which rules do you think one must break? Just askin’ JDA

      • JDA,
        Personally I think you are gonna have to figure out how to get around some silly rules. Think the man that was arrested for digging the hole and Ranger Reid in Yellowstone type of thing (neither of these are exactly what I was implying but that sort of thing).And yes I understand why we have these rules. Can’t have people leaving a bunch of holes everywhere or falling through the geothermal features in Yellowstone but some of us have enough common sense to fill our holes back in and not walk close to the geysers in Yellowstone or try to take a selfie with Cody the buffalo’s great great grandson 🙂
        I personally think you are right on with grammar rules in the poem. F seems to love language and I definitely think he used grammar rules to convey important info in the poem.
        As far as Forrests rules I’m still trying to figure out what they all are 🙂

        • Wy Girl;

          Forrest ignored the rule that says, “Do not touch” in his gallery, but other than that, I see a guy that pretty much seems to follow the rules…Unconventional, YES, but a real “rule breaker” – I am not so sure. I doubt that he wants us to cut fences, dig holes, go onto private property without permission.
          Search on Government land? Certainly, but BE CAREFUL what you say to whom, and don’t be seen IF you do find the treasure.

          Breaking the rules of grammar? He has deliberately mis-spelled a word or two, but If you look at the poem, to the best of my knowledge, he has followed all of the rules. So, I expect that he wants us to follow them as well. Commas are pauses, not the end of thoughts – etc. Don’t break up his sentences into tid-bits of information.

          Forrest’s rules??? How I wish I knew! JDA

          • No JDA I don’t see him as a ” real rule breaker ” either but I absolutely see him him as someone who pushes the edges, especially if it’s a grey area, and tilting situations to his favor, especially when he was a business man. I think there were a lot of situations that he did things that just “were not done”. I do not mean this in a negative way.
            As far as us as searchers breaking the rules there’s a couple things you gotta remember, one,there are different rules and regulations governing different search areas. Two, rules and regulations change over time and something that was not an issue six years ago could be now, and thirdly a lot of searchers may not even be aware that these certain rules and regulations may be in effect. So in your search area you could be scratching your head trying to figure out what rule you could be breaking and in actuality would not be breaking a rule but the same thing could garner a fine in my search area.

          • You make some good points WY Girl;

            There are two rules that a searcher must never break:

            Rule #1 – ALWAYS TRY to STAY SAFE.

            Rule #2 – NEVER ignore Rule #1


      • In my opinion the poem is about the blaze the one thing you look for but what do I know I’m empty handed after 20 tries

  72. Forgot what thread all the punctuation discussion was on… but thought this might interest some of those searchers… its a short dictionary slide show about ‘marks’, 11 of them. Unfortunately, asterisk is not among them. After Marks, it rolls into other interesting things about language if you care to watch.

  73. Searchers do not understand how important clue #1 is including me. Without this clue the chest will be in there for eternity. Clue #2 is useless without it. So please follow the poem as if you were reading a book. The first chapter is the setting ,and the foundation of it all. If you do not believe this you’ll probably be having a very good time with the family but will come out empty handed. If you are looking for the chase you will find the chase, but if you are looking for the gold you have to stop,relax, do not leave, do not leave for if you leave you will not see. It’s funny I can just imagine a kid looking at us and asking what we were looking for and he would give us the answer and leave, and we would say, “But of course”. Of course this is just my opinion.RC.

  74. what the clues tell me. i believe the following is going to create a sucking sound so huge from the collective eureka moments that it will rival any hurricane. i broke the rules and messed with the poem . i moved stanza 6 to the number 4 spot, i believe this must be done to get to the end. ” as i have gone alone in there and with my treasures bold,i can keep my secret where, and hint of riches new and old.” yellowstone nat park, resting place of mr fenn and his chest. ” begin it where warm waters halt” old faithful. “and take it in the canyon down,” “it” is the grand loop rd. “canyon down” is the grand canyon of yellowstone. “not far, but too far to walk.” more than 91 miles and less than a couple hundred. “put in below the home of brown.” mammoth hot springs. ” from there it’s no place for the meek,” continue down grand loop rd past; indian cr., panther cr., sheepeater cliffs, grizzly cr., grizzly lake and roaring mountain. ” the end is ever drawing nigh;” past artist paint pots. ” there’ll be no paddle up you’re creek, just heavy loads and water high.” past iron springs and gibbons falls. here is where i broke the rules and put in stanza 6 ahead of stanza 4. ” so hear me all and listen good,” past the amphitheater. ” your effort will be worth the cold.” past firehole canyon swimming hole. ” if you are brave and in the wood” past the 1988 burn area close to the old faithful inn. ” i give you title to the gold.” back to stanza 4. ” if you’ve been wise and found the blaze,” old faithful. look quickly down, you’re quest to cease, look down at your feet. ” but tarry scant with marvel gaze,” don’t stand around looking. ” just take the chest and go in peace.” ” so why is it that i must go and leave my trove for all to seek? the answer i already know, i’ve done it tired, and now i’m weak.” i believe he speeks of his battle with cancer and the ever approaching end and wanting to leave something for all to enjoy that gave him so much in his life. ” the thrill of the chase” it took me four different maps from the 1900’s to the present to find all these things. now….where is the chest? i would look under the boardwalk and around the benches. the visitor educational center may be in your line of sight when you “look quickly down” i wouldn’t rule that out. best advice i can give….act like a six year old kid who is poking around in all the odd places no adult would. AHHHHH! my burden has finally been lifted. thank you FF for excercising my grey matter so diligently.

    • Gary,
      While I can see the concept of a later stanza to be used prior in understanding how to read the poem.
      IMO you may have slipped into a force fit mode by ‘using’ that later stanza as a “replacement”, and not as an understanding.
      One example I can give is; “in the wood” to be considered the saddle of a mountain… which in this case would be, where wwh might be found. [ wwwh is now a “clue” that gets you closer to the chest ]
      Another example could be; stanza five indicating tired and weak as the medicine wheel, and where the first clue [example – wwwh] might be found / understood.

      In either theories, the “clue” would still be wwwh, however the ‘know where to begin’… the ‘know where to start’ may not be considered an actual clue. This might be a hard concept, to see it this way… but if we take the example, many searchers think; “Why is it I must go” to mean WY is the place to start… the idea, is the same.

      Finding the place to start, is just that… by itself, it may not a clue per se. Because a clue should “lead” one to the chest. As where, finding the place to start, would only show you where “the clues are”… line of thinking.

      Just thoughts…

      • i believe the poem was constructed to be unsolvable without changing it. wwh is the beggining and the end. forrest told a story about going on a journey only to wind up back where you started but it is like discovering it for the first time. the first time you’re at wwh you are looking for the start, the next time your there you’re looking for the end so you’re seeing it differently like for the first time.

      • every time i’ve seen you, you are wearing blinders. it’s no wonder you can’t see the light.

        • Those are polarized lenses gary, not blinders.
          I can barely see your light, it’s not bright enough.
          It keeps getting dimmer every time you move one of the stanzas in the poem.
          Sooner or later this type of light may burn you.

          • i really wood rather discuss the poem and the clues, but if you insist. thank you for confirming my comment above. let me explain one more thing to you. follow me if you can. as stated before the reason you can barely see my light is because of the blinders. the reason my light keeps getting dimmer is because you are falling farther behind.

          • gary,
            Are you sure you are not speaking with “warm waters”?
            We can discuss the clues but when you start moving stanzas around in the poem, I’m out.
            I know you’re physically disabled & need someone to search for you, but I think you have to iron out some imperfections in your solve, otherwise you probably won’t have any takers unless they also mess with the poem.

            You did see the comment by dal about messing with the poem, didn’t you?

    • Remember gary forrest says dont get off the designated paths in the park of yellowstone and he also says its not on no human trail so think on that

      • the poem takes you around grand loop rd, a designated “path” in yellowstone. and you are correct with no human trail. when ff tells his “story” or poem it is set back in time to the covered wagon days. follow me if you can. in a tv interview they keyed in on a covered wagon he has at his house. on that wagon they keyed in on a cast iron lever that had 271 degrees stamped on it. ff gives a deffinition of 271 degrees as being a northernly direction from santa fe. before grand loop road was a road it was a wagon trail that ran north and south up the west side of the park. hence no “human trail” but a ” wagon trail” and his definition of north.

          • Hi Gary.

            I know of and remember the interview, but the map is what I would like a link to if you have one.

            I’ve reviewed many old maps and have seen a variety of trails recorded, but not one with wagon trails.

            Do you have a starting point for me to find the old map you are talking about? I can find it on my own if need be.

        • In commercial dishwashing 140 degrees marks the warm and over that is “hot”. If you write down just the letters inside the postmarks on the book you can match them up. For example a string of a few spell out the original spelling of sacagewas name. One of them also is “141” and one is “temp”. This, combined with Fs reference to one of his many “dips” being in the scalding brown gravy pot rinse seems interesting. As commercial “hot water” begins at a temp of 141, and that temp is required in dishwashing. Or just a random aberration. Seems 141 degrees could be a viable WWWH if one assumes those as ‘hints’.

          • Jonsey,

            You gave the starting temp of water above warm. What is the maximum temp below warm?

            Scott W.

      • Can you show quote where he says to stay on path? The other quote is it’s not in very close proximity to human trail. I don’t remember seeing dont go off designated paths any where as quote from forrest…

        • Yea its somewhere he only was referring to yellowstone to stay on the designated paths Can anyone help out therr to remember hahaha its margerita night

          • Diggin gypsy they told me the way to avoid a hang over is to never stop drinking – and and and its its true (burp)

        • John,
          Here is a quote from Forrest.
          Question posted 6/30/2014:
          MW site:
          “Generally speaking, there are places where one should stay on established trails; Yellowstone is one. However, it reminds me of the worn-out axiom, “If you ain’t the lead dog, the scenery never changes.” When I am in the mountains or in the desert, the last place I want to be is on a trail. Ain’t no adventure in that for me. There isn’t a human trail in very close proximaty to where I hid the treasure.f “

  75. I like the idea of the circular trip on the Grand Loop. Or the enchanted circle in NM. Or a trip around a medicine wheel with clues as story points. Circles give one such a sense of wholeness, completeness.

    You can make this poem work almost anywhere. It could reflect ff’s personal history, or some other history or time, There’s umpteen scenarios and suggestive names of places one could build a cage around. But what is the elusive key to the unique solution of this poem from one very intelligent, broadly experienced, and complicated mind?

    • “You can make this poem work almost anywhere.” Very true… the elusive key is needed to move forward. what is it, is it a name, place or just a word? thinking out loud…

      • To me that key is “forward” itself. Literally, figuratively, homonyms and allusions included. As noun, verb, adjective and even the section in the book. It’s how I focused my sights. Possibly incorrectly, but ive got it ahead of the rest of things, right there in second place.

        • Not saying it’s a clue to me….just more like if the nine clues were the nine planets “forward” is kinda like my sun.

        • I see how ‘forward’ will be a theme where all the clues are gravitating around. ff has said it himself when he said ‘start at the beginning with the first clue’ and then we can assume that the rest will unraveled moving forward. In my line of thinking the key is the one that will crack the first clue. Who is ‘I’ and how it relates to ‘it’ ??? that transition between stanza 1 and 2.

          • Oz10,
            As much as I like “I” as being important.
            I {myself} falls back to the comment; Tight focus of A word that is key… I’m pretty sure it was stated that way, however I should look it back up to be sure.
            However, to my point, Does a single word bust open the entire poem?
            To me that would be ‘the’ word that is key…
            A word that is key, may just be an important word that many are focused on, but not the only word out of 166 words that may be ‘just as important.’ Equally important for other sections of the poem.
            For me, the use of I in the first stanza seems to relate to time past. and as you said; “Who is ‘I’ and how it relates to ‘it’ ??? that transition between stanza 1 and 2.”

            I can see the same thought, but maybe not the same idea as you… The Time Past thought brings a different perspective to “begin it where” in most of my ideas and thoughts relating to time… and not so much a searcher in the physical sense.
            So is it, a word that kick starts the poem?
            Or is a word that is key, as a must to know and the only way to solve the poem?
            I have to wonder what fenn really meant by that comment.
            I mean, fenn told us we need to get the first clue, and several have {first two clues} and on location … So far that hasn’t seem to help… I wonder if the word fenn refers to, is only for this first clue’s understanding, OR, as many have discussed, a word that is key to the solve of the entire poem.
            It’s so dang funny, how we perceive what looks simple, but we don’t know that it may not be that simple.

          • Hey Seeker…I agree…and had brought that very topic up a couple of weeks ago.

            There is a level to the poem that inckudes…..

            “Before” – the first four lines

            “During” – the next 12 lines

            “After” – the last eight lines

            Interestingly enough, the last eight lines gives direction on what you can do in order to process the reward you’ve found.

            On BLM land, did you know there is a specific definition for what a “trove” is?

            Hint…different than what ruins are, or ancient treasure found.


  76. NOTICE: I’m going to be working on the server this weekend. If you have trouble accessing the site it’s probably my fault. I will try to do most of it late at night so there’s no more disruption than necessary.

  77. “Worth the cold if yo are brave and in the wood” You have to be brave to ride in Skippy’s car, cause he crashed it in the creek and Forrest, Skippy and Donnie had to walk home in the cold, they didn’t realize how much fun it was until later. It is worth the cold to be brave and in the wood. Take a ride in Skippy’s car!

    • Nice video, William. Looks like you had a good time making it. Nothing under the seat or in the blind?

      Good luck with your search.

      • Only the gas tank, firewall, and sides below the tank sticking out of the ground, the rest is buried. If you are brave and in the woo D I G ive you title to the gold. I am digging it tomorrow.

  78. Seeker, you asked “Does a single word bust open the entire poem?” I am not sure if one word can do that, highly unlikely or lots of people would have seen the pattern already. What I am looking for is a ‘word/concept’ that will make me understand the first or first set of clues, and then I can use the same logic of finding a ‘concept’ for the next set of clues.

    I think ff said ‘few are in tight focus with a word that is key’. There are many ways of looking at it. Could it be a word that is already there in the poem? sure. Or could it be that elusive word that even though is not in the poem, pops up in our heads as we read along?

    I keep reading the first stanza over and over and it does seem to point to something that we need to find in the second and third stanzas. By the fourth we should have that word/concept/location ‘blaze’ on hand to understand the later clues. ‘As I have gone alone in there and with my treasures bold’ could that be the call to action? ‘in there’ as in later in the poem? can we deduct that whatever that is, it is very important since it is keeping the secret ‘where’ and it will hint to riches???

    Regarding fenns’ comments about people who found the clues only tells me those people didn’t know what they had and they arrived at some of those places by aberrations. If he comes out and says, someone solved the first one, two or four clues and they knew exactly where to start their search then I will believe it, but that hasn’t happened or I have not seen it.

    • Seeker, btw this is of course imo and not shooting down the ‘time’ theory. The ‘ new and old’ and ‘begin it where’ definitely supports the time theory, and a follow up question to what possible ‘riches’ in your opinion is the poem referring to? Treasures, natural resources, important memories or life lessons…

      • My church is in the mountains and along the river bottoms where dreams and fantasies alike go to play.

        Riches are the RM’s…imo Oz. Riches of knowledge of what is found within over time. It’s an never ending cycle.

    • Oz10—- have you ever seen one of those shows that expose magic tricks? You watch the trick and think ” how in the heck did they do that? Then they show you how the trick is done and you marvel at how easily you were tricked. You just weren’t thinking in that mode. You almost want to slap yourself for not realizing how the “trick” was performed. It’s abstract thinking.

      I think when someone solves this it will be basically the same thing. There is an obvious answer in front of us— but we can’t see it as we are thinking incorrectly. I know what I am saying is obvious– but it appears many of us are being still spellbound with the “trick” itself, rather than exploring the framework behind the trick.

      • Sparrow: you’ve got it exactly. People are looking at the poem but they are not “seeing”. They are biased (quite unavoidably, of course) by their preconceptions of the ways that a poem could deliver clues. Forrest had 15 years to figure out a strategy, so it’s not going to be the first thing, or second thing, or third thing you think of. But at least a few people are obviously on the right track and have solved the first two clues. And some of them did NOT go right on past the next clue or clues because Forrest has suggested some may have solved four clues (but he is not sure).

        • Why do I need TWO new phones? Why not just one? I referring to this phone and THE iPhone.
          What TWO phones are you referring to? Why don’t I just keep my flip phone? That flip phone wasn’t the one I had before.


      • Yes, we need to find the framework. Another magic trick that comes to mind is misdirection… it seems that thousands of people are falling for it. They find the best suitable warm spring and start walking down the canyon from there to a subjective distance anywhere between 200 feet and 10 miles (too far to walk) or until they see something brown. Then any rock formation or a tree with some bright foliage is a good enough blaze and they look quickly down and find no chest. I think is safe to say that after 5 years that method is not working. Using stanzas 2, 3 and 4 and hope to find the treasure is unlikely.

        I am not saying a warm spring is not part of the solve or that it may be a place to start the search ultimately but I say we need to identify and understand all 9 clues before we move. The poem is sprinkled all over by seemingly good descriptions of locations, only there are thousands and thousands (warm waters, canyons, hoB, place for the meek, creek, heavy loads, water high, etc…

        • Not my intention to open that pandoras box again and offend those who believe that boots on the ground is more important than knowing what the clues are first or to those who go visit the same location over and over and expect different results. (well maybe is too late for that now) but I am taking ff comments on the subject very seriously:

          “The person who finds the treasure will have studied the poem over and over, and thought, and analyzed and moved with confidence. Nothing about it will be accidental”.

          “Playing a hunch is not worth much in the search and those who start out by looking for the blaze, are wasting their time.f”.

          You tell us that we should find “where warm waters halt” before trying to solve any of the other clues. Imagining that we haven’t seen the rest of the poem, and all we have to go on is:

          a. “begin it where warm waters halt” and
          b. “somewhere in the mountains north of Santa Fe”

          Do you think that we can confidently determine the starting place for your treasure trail? ~ Steve

          No, if all you have to go on are those two clues you cannot proceed with confidence. Look at it this way. If you were making a cake and you left out a few ingredients, would you achieve your goal?

          • OZ10,
            Maybe we could add one more quote;
            “I warned that the path would not be direct for those who had no certainty of the location beforehand, but sure for the one who did.” f

            If all the ingredients are not know beforehand… it seems knowing the first clue is trickier than we thought first.
            Fenn doesn’t say he agree with these clues given as stated; ‘You tell us that we should find “where warm waters halt” before trying to solve any of the other clues.’
            But simple refers to them as “those two clues”… could the message here be… you don’t have the first clue and are trying to solve wwwh before other clues?

            Before you can make a cake correctly… you need the full list of ingredients, including the first one.

            Just a thought.

          • Seeker, on his comment about the mountains north of SF and WWWH, he says ‘if all you have to go on are those 2 clues you cannot proceed with confidence’ I think one way to make sense of this is that wwwh by itself is not a full cooked clue.

            Now, it could be that wwwh combined with canyon down and whatever that represents is the full clue. Of course, he can’t say that cause it will give to much away. So he now uses wwwh as the title for that uncooked clue. That will also explain if he says to someone ‘you should be looking where wwh’. He is not saying that is the first clue nor the second or third, he is just saying ‘you should figure out what that means’ and once we do we will know which is it.

            Another example will be ‘no paddle up your creek with heavy loads and water high’ Just for the sake of argument let’s say those 2 lines combined is a ‘waterfall’ it makes sense and it was easy but he will not call it that nor he will say those 2 lines go together. Maybe he could say ‘you should be looking for no paddle up your creek as a title to that uncooked clue.

          • Oz10,
            I like word/concept. Also what you said; “Now, it could be that wwwh combined with canyon down and whatever that represents is the full clue….’ fully cooked clues thought ‘ ”

            This is one reason I ponder how many clues does it take to get an answer. Fenn did stated the searchers “deciphered” the first two clues, that seems to imply each clue to be understood separately… But as you said; ‘combined it with canyon and whatever…’ might be the tipping point of thought… all the whatever.

            I’ve held off saying this, but for further discussion, here’s the way I see the poem… It’s not a treasure hunt, It’s an exploration. I say this because, the mind set of a treasure hunt automatically wants to separate parts of the poem from other parts, in the hope of seeing 9 of something.

            9 steps, 9 place, 9 names, 9 large locations, 9 small location etc. which imo is why searchers are all over the map. If we look at consecutive and contiguous, I do see a pattern [ just differently to others]… one; that is not broken into pieces, either by words, lines or even sentences. That to me is a treasure hunt… imo the poem is more than that. Unfortunately the leprechaun pot of gold has lured us to think one way.

            Folks talk about, full circle as, coming ‘back’ to a starting point… I see the full circle more as, a none broken journey… and know the place for the first time… line of thinking.
            That is what I mean by time… meaning; over periods of time.

            Oz, we seem to be on the same concept of thought, and No, I don’t take what you say as ‘shooting down’ any theory. I just have taken my thoughts a bit further in the attempt to see those WhatIF’s possibilities.

        • Oz10,
          My condolences to the ones that have known where to begin.

          Here lies a great thought and inspired by a man who’s thoughts were only thinking of others.
          I regret the passing of the stanzas 2, 3 & 4 for they have shown the way to a treasure only known by him.
          This passing of these great lines of the poem are heartfelt & will not be forgotten despite there demise of others.

          The line in the poem “Begin it where warm waters halt” has unfortunately led people to believe this is where to begin & has been unproven & shall be cast into the depths of witchcraft.

          Sorry to hear there is no canyon down or home of Brown.

          Let us say a prayer to the blaze on the creek with no paddle whispering heavy loads and water high.

          As we lay these stanzas down to rest to meet there maker, I ask that all of you please stand up for one last thought of silence.

          ………………….. .. . . . . .. …… . . ….

          Thank you for attending today’s ceremony & remember there are other stanzas in the poem that will join there deceased siblings 2, 3 & 4 in time if they already haven’t.

          • I’m just going with the Halloween theme.
            You know stanza 2,3 & 4 will rise up from the dead after midnight on Monday & they are going to be very angry.

            Maybe the home of Brown has something to do with Charlie Brown & the great pumpkin.

        • IMO anyone who does not know where the TC is will take an indirect route to it even if they follow the shortcut that the poem provides so FF is upheld in his statement about direct and indirect routes.

    • OZ10…I can’t completely agree with you, because, what if, like me, someone who does search, only is able to go and put BotG, let’s say, every other year….or maybe even longer.

      Jumping to conclusions about anything at this point, could actually be not good, because people could be just keeping quiet.

      I know I would if I were to find the chest.

      Too much difficulty in keeping media civerage out, if info is released too soon.

      Besides, why let the government know you have something, when they will ask you where you got it from?

      Safe answer….”I found it in the Rockies on BLM land. Here is my gift receipt from the owner of the trove.”

      Then if you are even smarter, you will hand the government a business card of your tax lawyer.


  79. Just a side note. If you are in the military and say “I messed with Jack” it means you had a meal with him. So when Forrest says “don’t mess with my poem” what definition is he using?

      • Pdenver— most do understand it that way also. Most likely that is what Forrest is saying— but a lot of words have alternate meanings. If Forrest said “don’t alter my poem” rather than “don’t mess with my poem” I wouldn’t even bring it up.

        • We tend to use words that don’t match their meanings, yet we understand what the person is saying. Didn’t Mr. Fenn say something similar to this? If we understand what he is saying, then why worry what it means? I do agree that words have different meanings and many times I find myself smiling.

          • pdenver, Jake— I’ve been searching for 3 months now and admit I haven’t got a clue which direction to go. I basically throw stuff at the wall and see what sticks. lol

          • There’s a few things you can do when you have no direction Joe.
            You could ask Forrest even though he has given us direction.
            You can get hints from the books that will help with clues in the poem.
            You can always consult other posters that are in the same boat as you.
            I know what direction to go.
            I don’t know if it’s the right direction.
            I think it’s safe to say it’s best to pick a direction than to mull over what a direction is.
            There’s only one way to find out.

    • Maybe he’s talking about his lunch box? ‘lunch’ was also a mission in Vietnam, I believe it was a covert operation. Maybe called “Operation Menu” if that rings a bell? There was breakfast, lunch, snack etc….I could be mixing up some details but I think that operation was close to the time and place F may have been there.

      Then again, if he was talking about having lunch with dal at the time he said that he might have meant let’s not mix business and pleasure. Probably all resides on whether they were lunching at the Pink Adobe or not. Lol.

  80. Grey –

    Grey is commonly associated with secrecy and shadows.

    Grey refers to a color of a neutral tone between black and white, and can also be used metaphorically to convey gloom and dullness.

    Don’t ask how I got here. It’s complicated – yet crazy simple. Just go back one year or so and find my older posts. Look at the name of the range to the west of the Greys. Then read the last stanza in the poem.

    Scott W.

    • Stanza six – Listen good. – go back and read the poem aloud and listen to the words. Let them flow together.

      What do you hear?

      Scott W.

  81. ff – said he hid the treasure chest north of santa fe – but is the beginning also starts north of santa fe – just wondering

    • frank,

      The specific elevation limits provided by The Flyer has given me the impression that it is within these areas where he actually hid the treasure.

      So much more beauty and wonder a long the way to savor.


      • SL thanks for your reply – its my opinion that wwwh is not north of santa fe and its not far but to far to walk – that is just what I think and its my opinion

        • frank,
          Your opinion is respected. The journey a long the way to the hidden treasure, IMHO, covers much more area than…. North.

          The sky’s the limit…. so the old adage goes.


    • Ah yes….”begin it where warm waters halt”….

      …the edge of civilization….”north of Santa Fe”….I see I am not the only one who has realized this to be more “FF thinking” than others do.

      One can take this “clue” to start your search pretty much anywhere in the RM….but where?

      Well, now that you have taken this step…try combining this clue – “the uncooked clue”, with the next one – “cook it a little up”… “taking a canyon down”.

      Pretty simple, huh? Sure it is….by applying thus logic to “a good map” – (I suggest using GE for starters) because now you can see “canyons” as they were made….from the air…a MACRO view in many ways.

      Once you target your canyon….you now should combine it with the “home of Brown”.. ..You do have a “home of Brown” for your search area at this point, right? Uhm…it is important.

      Just think…in reverse…your “hoB” must be “down” from the canyon and WWWH.

      Of course you do.


      Hey everyone…just keeping you on your toes.


    • Frank,

      In my opinion, I have never seen anything to indicate that the search must start North of Santa Fe. In my opinion, the search can even begin outside the four states.

      Scott W.

  82. Well, back from search #10 – empty handed. We had a wonderful, fun outing, but alas, no treasure. We had one exciting moment when my Grand Daughter, using the metal detector, stumbled on an old fire pit that was covered over with pine needles. The metal detector went crazy, indicating GOLD!! – so we began to dig – – – we dug up three tin cans – –
    D A R N ! ! ! How much fun though – sure got out heart rate up I will tell you ! ! !

    Thanks again Forrest for the THRILL of the chase. I wish all searchers good luck, and TRY to STAY SAFE out there.

    Weather was perfect. light snow on a couple of passes, but everything was dry and BEAUTIFUL where we were. JDA

    • LOL,
      I bet your hearts were beating out of your chests.
      That has happened to me this year & realized some water got into a part of the metal detector making it malfunction.

      So you calling quits on this solve & that area?

        • I think that’s a wise choice JDA,
          It’s time to hibernate for the winter although like you said not much snow & not bitterly cold yet.

          I’m still going over video & comparing & looking & thinking.
          The 6 pictures that were taken by 2 different people of Taylor Falls in 2012 & 2014 show & prove that the creek does not flow as crazy as I thought in spring runoff.

          There is a log in the falls that has not moved in 4 years & the rocks have not moved either in 2 years. They were still in the same place this year.

          I will be going back there next year.

          • Good luck Jake;

            I hope that you find it there. I still believe in my area, just may, again, have to fine tune. Winter is long, thoughts will be deep – JDA

          • Jake,

            Your too focused on the “TAYLOR” As in “Take it in” .

            Stop jamming your square peg through a …….



        • JDA,

          You lack IMAGINATION and your inner child is much too old.

          You get an A+ for being analytical and a beautiful human being !!



          • Thanks for the A+ Mikem. I assure you my inner child is livelier than most, and I might surprise you with the imagination. Good luck, and have fun – and TRY to STAY SAFE

  83. Gosh, the expressions on everyone’s face must have been priceless when the detector went off. Glad to hear you and your family had a good time, JDA.

      • Hola JDA,
        Glad to hear you had a great adventure. I bet those cans would make great art. Did you bring them home? I brought home some found stuff to make a shadowbox. : )

        • No, we re-buried them, and put back the pine needles – Tried to leave it as we had found it. Maybe we should have packed out the cans, but we didn’t JDA

          • Thanks for telling us your story … Maybe next trip, bring an olive jar with a note in it about yourself, and bury it with those cans. A year later send your granddaughter a poem about it. Who knows, she may take her grandchildren to find it, and they will all give you a shout-out, or, maybe smile at a homely girl.

            TTOTC hunters might consider planting olive jars about themselves on failed hunts. Seems more fun than those geo-caching games. Leave a hunt legacy for your heirs…. if you believe human life and wilderness will still around then. I’m kinda worried about it.

  84. Really nice that you had a great family trip JDA…I believe that searchers need to always go home with a sense of accomplishment…treasure or not. My trips are always fun filled and packed with side trips. Thanks for sharing.

    • What I find interesting is the nomadic nature and love for trading. That shared with their wide geographic range makes me wonder if some Jumano associated group either assembled, traded or otherwise facilitated the placement of the Fenn Clovis Cache. Do you know anything on that subject? Seems to be a lot of mystery there.

    • One little….two little….three little…….Too much Indian in the recipe.

      The “Indian” relation to the poem is slight if any .

      Stay focused on Mr. Fenns personal journey…..Last time I checked , the only thing Indian about Forrest is that he is the custodian of Tantakas Pipe .

      jmho…Stay FOCUSED


  85. Dal,
    In the Latest Wikipedia update re: TTOTC , it says that FF confirmed 4 clues have been solved ,
    Im sure many will say they have solved all of them but its only legit if they have the treasure or Forrest says its legit.

    “Fenn has confirmed four of the nine clues have been solved and that searchers have been within 200 feet of the treasure. As of 20 August 2016 Fenn has stated that to his knowledge it is still not found.”

    This update was done by My Chemistry Romantic and published 11 days ago.

    Have you and if not, can you confirm this with the man himself?

      • Thanks Jake,
        Dont think much of Wiki myself, another searcher mentioned it to me and instead of adding to rumor I’d rather just ask Dal,
        My new Motto
        “Just ask Dal, he’ll know!”

          • Jake
            Nice! Thank you so very much.
            So as of now it FF has yet to confirm 4 clues being solved.
            Sorry, shldve done my homework.

          • Notice how f never mentions if the searchers that have solved two clues, possibly four clues or within 200 feet have solved any of the couple of hints in TTOTC. Possibly if they had they would never leave that area they were at.

  86. There is a ‘Treasure Island’ in YSNP on my GE and GEpro… its at 44º14’35” & 110º 56′ 24″ … a nowhere spot . Info only says “Treasure Island, United States”….. what’s that all about? Just curious.

  87. Dal….’ol buddy
    Would you mind doing a bit o house keeping, I know ff made the comment about ‘not related to a dam’ a while back, may i suggest you enter this as “Tips from Forrest” #15

    The month & year please, as I am looking into any sort of significance in the timing, not that really matters/ if he stashed Indulgence in YNP

    • Try SB 68… May 2014.
      If this computer illiterate one can find it everyone else should be able to.

  88. Dal should start a thread, “What will you do with the treasure when you find it?” I plan on putting it on display in my fish tank…hehehe.

    • Hey Greg, that would be a cool thread, huh?

      To get a nudge out there, I have a plan of attack for this in place, just waiting to enact it. It does include NGC grading many of the coins, hiring a security firm and then going on tour with it across the US. I may sell some of the coins to help finance the initial efforts, but don’t you fret…..if I find it, many of the seekers will get their chance to see the treasure too.


  89. Just curious what you think. We all know, and have seen, the wide variety of “solves”presented on this blog. Do you think if a wide group of people were told that a certain poem by Robert Frost or Emily Dickinson contained 9 clues that lead to a hidden Treasure, and people truly believed this was the case, that we would see just as many “solves” as we do now?

    We all seem to have a tendency to grab onto a couple of things and run with them. What do you think? Would there be just as many different takes on one of those poems? A lot depends on what one believes to be true.

    • I believe there could be as many. Yet, it depends upon what the clues would be and how easily/difficult they’re represented in the poem.

    • That is an interesting question Sparrow;

      My answer is probably no. I say probably for the following reasons: 1) What was the intent when the poem was written by Robert or Emily – Was it the same as Forrest’s?
      2) How long did Robert or Emily spend on writing the poem? Did they spend 15 years, as did Forrest, to “perfect” the poem.

      3) Were Robert or Emily as good as Forrest is at using obscure or archaic definitions of words to make them appear to hold no secrets, but actually do.

      The answers to these three questions would dictate how successful a Robert Frost or Emily Dickinson poem would be as a Treasure Hunt source.

      Just my humble opinion. JDA

  90. Yes, I think it would be exactly the same. We would have a million different solves from a million different people. We would have people who cannot follow instructions and people who read into every little thing.

  91. Tomorrow looks like a good day to shoot some photos looking for one of the 9 clues. (And, silly me, I won’t even know which one of the 9 clues it is until I find it.) (Sigh…) It could be a long search. By the way, I keep running into multiples of the number 12 (288, for example). Anyone else notice this? Safe searching, everyone!
    “Have flashlight, will travel”

  92. What is North? Not what I had always assumed.

    I found this on a video interview with Forrest. How I missed it I don’t know. A while back, Dal wrote a great post of what north (northerly) was, complete with a conical diagram. I was convinced.

    Well, this seems to contradict that post. I’m slightly confused.

    5:38 into the video –

    “North, a northerly direction to me means anything north of 270 degrees and north of 090 degrees.” ……… Then he clarifies and says, ” 271 degrees to me can be a northerly direction.”

    I have no opinion here. Just reporting the facts.

    I’m asking for opinions.

    Scott W.

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