The Key Word…Part Six


Comments are now closed on this page. To continue the discussion go to the latest The Key Word page.

“Many have given serious thought to the clues in the poem but only a few are in tight focus with a word that is key.”

The above is a quote from Forrest. This page is where we can discuss what that key word might be.




691 thoughts on “The Key Word…Part Six

  1. So, what happens to all the comments that were post here in The Key Word? How do I look at the comments from before? Anybody?

    • Over in the other Key Word thread, you asked “Jeremy can you chime in here please?” regarding the stumps illustration. Sorry so late, I generally avoid the key word threads because I’ve always thought searchers got carried away equating “a word that is key” with “key word”. If you still have a question I’d be happy to comment now that I’m paying attention 🙂

      But since I’m here…

      When looking for “a word that is key”, I thought it might be helpful to consider the context of when the statement was made. Specifically, we don’t know how many clues have been solved currently, but at the time the statement was made it was definitely only two clues that had been solved. So if people were (or still are) struggling with the third clue, it makes sense that the word they aren’t paying enough attention to would be related to the third clue.

      Of course, no surprise, I consider the third clue to be the sentence “Put in below the home of Brown.” From that, you can guess that I think people were too focused on the word “Brown” and that this statement by Fenn may mean that people are not as focused as they should be on another word in that sentence. My vote would be the word “home”.

      Maybe searchers haven’t been focused enough on what “home” might mean. They’re looking for dwellings, or houses, or other more literal meanings of “home”, when perhaps it’s more a metaphorical translation like “home is where the heart is”. In any case, considering the huge concern everyone has with the capitalized “Brown”, this word that is key statement makes a lot more sense when viewed this way, in the context of timelines and how many clues were solved and searcher fixations.

      • Jeremy, I’m pretty sure that f has mentioned that many lines in the poem have a word that is key. My point being twofold, that your thought about the home of Brown line having a word that is key sounds good. The other being that f said a word that is key. F might have pointed out somewhere that “a” is plural…meaning multiple lines.

        • **** Fund D suggested – “. . . f has mentioned that many lines in the poem have a word that is key.” ****

          Hey-O, Fundy –
          That doesn’t ring any bells – can you get us closer to the source (or the actual wording) for that statement?


          • While we might be working of second and even third party info [ we needed to tread softly with these pieces of information ] The most obvious conclusion is Fun and Cynthia’s postings come straight from fenn himself in the below comments;
            “…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…”
            “People think I sat down one night and wrote that poem. I didn’t write that poem, I crafted it,” he says. “No one is going to find that treasure chest on a Sunday afternoon picnic or over spring break.” Backpackers interview.

            And of course, the comments, an architect wrote the poem, and ever word was deliberate.

            Being fixated on a single word and hope it unlock anything has been a failure thus far because it seems more and more are only looking at a word that already fits “their hopeful solve” an dismiss any other possibilities.

            In my post, down this page, I was having a little fun using ~Whattookmesolong, as MY word that is key… The point is, in my mind, Once a searcher get to a certain point in the solve it should be relatively clear how this all unfolds… IF other claim the know what the blaze or Blazes or hoB or water high or know what in the wood is or TSWMG, or they have this magical keyword, seem to be fooling themselves, and completely in contradiction to fenn’s comments.

            Some may have solved the first four clues [ whatever they are in your mind ] Yet, fenn seems to feel they don’t know they solve them… That’s a bit perplexing, don’t ya think?

          • Seeker. For all intents and purposes; I actually don’t have ,nor work off of, a word that is key. I can think of a few words daily and have them make sense. But at the end of the day, no word has such a power to elucidate the poem and clues. iMO.

            FF’s quote about ‘ word that is key’ I always had a contrary interpretation of what he said in accordance to what I have seen here.

            A short deduction , in my opinion:

            “It is interesting to know that a great number of people are out there searching. MANY are giving serious thought to the clues in my poem, but only a FEW are in tight focus with a word that is key. The treasure may be discovered sooner than I anticipated.”

            I read this as : Due to Many searchers are giving serious thoughts to the Clues in his poem, the treasure may be discovered sooner than he anticipated. IMO.

            Only a Few are in tight focus of a word that (they think ) is key . Basically , this is interpreted, by me, as saying that there is no cyphers, codes ,riddles etc.

            He said this 8/28/15, after the above comment .

            So due to many focusing on the clues , the chest may be found sooner because so few are looking for words that are key like a cypher, code and riddle.

            So, there is no word that is key designed by him. I always read that quote this way . Many is greater than a few. IMO.

            I just focus on what the clues are and always have.

          • FF does say things that do not sound like a natural flow of speaking sometimes and you have to think that it is most likely because he is trying to muddy his quote a little. He wants to give out information but make you think about it and question it.

            It is the same in this quote:

            “It is interesting to know that a great number of people are out there searching. MANY are giving serious thought to the clues in my poem, but only a FEW are in tight focus with a word that is key. The treasure may be discovered sooner than I anticipated.”

            I have to lean toward your idea that the treasure being discovered sooner more likely has to do with the many given serious thought. The “Only a few in tight focus” part of the statement is worded as such that the treasure would not be found soon if that’s all we had to go on.

          • Aaron. Yes, exactly what I perceive in that statement. I can see in one other occasion where he has worded his answer in the same manner. I look at it like this : How often do I automatically read a word that is incorrectly spelled and not notice that it was spelt incorrectly.? How often do I superimpose a word while reading that is not actually there in the sentence and not realize I have done so? Well, it’s all about tight focus of the words I am reading. I can add or miss a word even while speaking while reading unless I am very focused word per word.

            FF has mentioned enough times about “imagination” being important and “key” for me to focus on the word ‘imagination’as being of a broader perception . Rather than tigh ficus tunnel eyed of the letters that make up the word so to speak. He said ‘A’ word that is key not THE word that is key.

            Perhaps others see THE when it’s ‘A’. Makes a big difference in registered perception. IMO .

          • Hi Als….

            I disagree…oh are wading into the wuote, when you should take it at face value, due to context.

            You wrote…

            He said this 8/28/15, after the above comment .

            “So due to many focusing on the clues , the chest may be found sooner because so few are looking for words that are key like a cypher, code and riddle.”

            What I understand this quote to be is that he has realized that there is a key word and some folks are investigating that angle. And with doing so, it will unlock a location, that allows them to find the trove.

            I agree with this explanation. There is a key word….I also believe it to be a riddle of sorts.

            Vague in expression, but n be the less, a riddle.

            Good luck.

          • Tim( ZosoRocks). I read FF’s quote different:

            “It is interesting to know that a great number of people are out there searching. many are giving serious thought to the clues in my poem, but only a few are in tight focus with a word that is key. The treasure may be discovered sooner than I anticipated.”

            ” But only a few..”

            There are 9 clues in the poem that will lead to the chest..right? Many are giving serious thought to the clues.. So,in reality there is a minimum of 9 clue words but obviously there’s more that 9 clue words. Solve the Clues find the chest..right? Which has more power to solving the poem- a word that is key or the 9 clues?

            FF quote:
            “Imagination isn’t a technique, it’s a key. f”

            Imagination is a word and he says “it’s a key”.

            If we are say to others what they”should” do by crashing a plane and meeting Yoda, Perhaps investigatate how” imagination” is applicable in reading the poem. FF says it’s a key. It’s not a technique. Perhaps it’s the contiguous creative?

            In my opinion, he already said what the word that is key is- its imagination. Not a code ,not a riddle , not a cypher word. It doesnt unlock anything as a word.

            It’s a literary flow. If it unlocks anything , it unlocks perception guidance- contiguous creative.

            In my opinion. LoL.

          • Seeker – I wasn’t kidding about my Titanic Heart of the Ocean diamond hint. Key Word: HOPE:


            There are many similarities to the story of that diamond in the movie and the actual Hope Diamond. And I mentioned that was the only item left in Pandora’s jar. Tight focus on Forrest’s bronze jar with the nude woman on it. But the Key Word could also be HEART or LOVE.

          • Jake, yep Loco of course got the right backstory of which searcher originally posted the info I spoke of.

            I have no idea what Seeker is talking about in his comment that’s nearby. Lol

          • Thanks for the background (and links) loco and Fund-E – I’d never have dug that up.


          • Tim ~ “So due to many focusing on the clues , the chest may be found sooner because so few are looking for words that are key like a cypher, code and riddle.”

            Where is that quote coming from?

          • It was in the previous post I responded too I didn’t look it up for accuracy, I associated it to my thought concerning the key word.

            I found a key word that I believe unlocks the whole poem. What makes you think there isn’t one? You sure don’t provide any help in dismantling those FF statements.

            Maybe you can please provide evidence that shows what YOU say is accurately based.

            Seeker…time and time again, you fall onto quotes by FF, but never have you provided insights on why something is not right 28th your thinking……all you do is just ask questions to lean towards something being wrong.

            Probably because you have come to a stopping point in your effort…I don’t know, but you appear to be a “Debbie Downer” whenever you get a chance.

            Cheer up….you aren’t digging deep enough.

            You seem restricted on being positive.

            Cheers and good luck.

          • BTW Seeker…did you answer those 13 questions that were recently posted to me to answer?

            Did you read my answers?

            Will you respond honestly to those questions, like I had?

            Can you even answer them?

            Probably not, huh?

            Good luck.

          • Seeker. Tim was quoting me in post not FF. I did quote the actual FF then gave my interpretation version of what FF said, which Tim quoted me.

          • thanks CO….for the kind words.

            May I ask what do/did you like of all write?

            Interesting? Helpful? Makes you think of things you haven’t?

            Like what? Did it help your general solve? Did something make you tear yours up?

            I’m curious if I’m helping?

            Cheers and good luck.

          • Tim,
            When you find me quoting fenn and have a concern about the quote or don’t know where it’s found… just ask… I didn’t write a book, open a dot com, or have an external hard drive flowing with all the quotes, or blog dedicated for such. I actually looked them up and verified them, and not just cut and paste from an other’s posting…

            As to your 13 questions? ~Whether I choose to read a post or reply to it is my prerogative. Personally your little questionnaire was rather ridiculous… so I didn’t bother, nor did I post about it… That should have been a clue for ya right there.

            But it’s truly funny you saying about quoting… ~’It was in the previous post I responded too I didn’t look it up for accuracy, I associated it to my thought concerning the key word.’

            Well then, you can believe it works for ‘you’ if ya like… but others and myself see ” quotations ” that fenn stated as such; it would be nice to have some ‘accuracy’ when doing so, a little effort on your part, and if asked about it, don’t whine about being asked. You posted it as a quote, remember?

          • It was a quote by FF. I just didn’t confirm it….or validate it was. I trust others if they wrote….”He said”…..I don’t need to reaffirm someone else….that would be silly.

            We each use these quotes the way we choose. If I want others to see an exact quote I’ll provide it, with my commentary on my perception. I’ll then paraphrase the quote based upon that perception.

            You fail to understand the rules of the game if YOU think I should not.

            Imagination is not exclusive.

            As for the questions….they weren’t silly and by all means, they were not created by me either. I just answered them openly and honestly for “Birdie.”

            Maybe you have a few questions for me, too?

            Good luck Seeker.

        • @Fundamental Design: I’d like to hear Forrest’s argument for the word “a” being plural. I’m sure it’s entertaining. 🙂 Not to argue too strongly against the infallible Mr. Fenn, “a” is certainly singular. Even when used like “a great many years” it is still a single collection of the item.

          • If you put your finger on a piano key, you put your finger on one key, not all eighty-eight of them.

          • (If you’re just saying there’s multiple words that are key in the poem, I mean, sure, obviously, since there’s nine clues, right? Nine, twenty-four, whatevs. But that doesn’t mean the word “a” is plural. “a word that is key” would refer to a single one of those.)

          • Jeremy, that’s what I thought too. I’m just repeating what I saw somewhere. It was about the use of the word ‘a’ like in the example I wrote. If instead one inserts the word ‘the’ for ’a’ then it reads more as singular. I didn’t get to hung up on singular or plural, I just saw that there’s more keys if I touch a key. If I touch the key then there’s only one key.

      • JP,
        I believe you have something true in the word home!
        Put in below the home of brown?
        Not put in at the home of brown, put in below.
        I suppose once you Figure out, where the home of brown is go below?
        Thanks JP

      • Good post Jeremy.

        Forrest’s hat is brown. In OUAW, he tells of George Dabich and the brown hat. When speaking with reverence about something or someone, we often capitalize. So Brown could be the hat, and put in could mean get into Forrest mind…his way of thinking.

        • Twingem – Great post! I couldn’t agree more.

          And George Dabich killed a lot of grizzes while wearing that hat. Ergo, I asked Forrest once if I could wear it out Cabin Creek on The Chase. Maybe they would sense its inherent power and run away…

      • Jeremy P –

        I think we agree that Fenn was not referring to a Key Word.

        I was asking you clarify that Fenn did not alter the Picture of the stumps. Another chaser used you story to tell me that Fenn had altered the image to include clues/hints.

        I was asking to clarify whether you though Fenn altered the image.


    • Lignutz,
      I don’t know who’s going to survive?
      188 days of winter, it will pass quickly! Like life it’s so short in the scene of things.
      All I know is it’s a lot of hard work mentally keeping up with it all!
      Dal, and all his writing and working the computers, Billy Forester and all he does, I don’t know how they do it! Geez, and I can’t even imagine what Mr. Fenn puts in, writing books, interviews ect….. it’s going on 8 years! I would have implode by now. MI

  2. Yeah, I saw all that…boys will be boys! While they argue over who’s right, someone is gonna whisper & they won’t hear them!

  3. Earlier there was mention of “eagles” being the key word. Wow, what an awesome end to my solve that would be. Love the music, the patriot sense, the freedom of flight… just can’t bring that one together with that first stanza tho. So still scratchin.


  4. Subscribe…thanks again Dal.

    Carry-over conversation….

    Lug…..I wanted to say something regarding a FF quote concerning how we should go about with the poem. This also applies to what you were saying about driving to/through the clues, so… is the quote again….and thru textual criticism, we ca see the truth of it.

    “Thank you Curtis

    The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowlege.f”

    Just because FF stated “should be followed in order”….and “no other way”…it is a direct reference back to the his own words”…..although vague….we can sift through the meanings to get a direct meaning…..follow me along for a few seconds..

    We all know that ‘should be’ leans more to “exactmy”, but in truth, it isn’t huh? There is still a bit of room left before you get to “will be” or “should be rqd”.

    IMO – we must do as he instructs, to follow them in order, but the mode of how we get there is still our choice.

    I’m a poem purist because I am familiar with how treasure maps are made. So that makes me think that FF is actually nudging us to walk the path, instead of driving it, because of some importance to walking, versus driving.

    I’ve tried to drive my path…twice now…..and get this.,..I admit, one cannot see a whole lot while paying attention to the road and/or the closeness of the mountain cliffs because they seem to be right there next to the tires.

    So he nudged us to walk the path for safety, enjoyment, excersise, and adventure. Don’t forget the adventure part. Especially with kids involved…make it a grand story for them and you will have even more fun.

    You see, one will be going to fast to see anything important, even at two miles per hour.

    I do honestly believe one must walk the path.

    Another comment that has gotten to me and my thinking is his use of the would ‘drive’.

    My location can either have the seeker drive to WWWH and walk the path, OR drive to the target area and walk the path from that clue onward.

    I “know” where to go. I “know” where I can park if I drive. It can be done, if you walk it once and remember the points of interest that are important. I see no other way to complete this task.

    I also believe that FF – since he already knew of this spot, drove to the final spot, but used a “walk scenario” in order to throw us off a bit.

    I’m not buying into it. He 91st be to the final spot, “hid Indulgence”, and then “laughed during the short 5 minute walk back to his car” and then drove back to WWWH, and our of the region.

    It is logical for an 80 yr old CLEVER man to do this.

    My WWWH is “less than a few miles” from the TC….walking distance that is “not far, but not too far to walk”….. Which is also a great driving reference if you ask me.

    Anyhow….as you can see….I’ve thought about those specific words by FF for quite some time and have concluded with what you have read….walking the path will bring success.

    Be the chest.

    Sorry bout the length….but sometimes you have to explain in many words.


    • Tim –

      I listen to Fenn’s words and I’m not trying to fit anything to a solution. I keep an open mind. Of course, at times, I have thought I was on to it, but I never get so blinded that confirmation bias can set in.

      To me Fenn saying he made two trips to the TC from his car means that we should do the same.

      Where there is room for discussion is in ho we see the clues. I do not necessarily see the clues as directions. Instead I can see them as way point. Or even way point. The several clues can all be pointing to just one place, a place that fits multiple clues. This is how I see the following.

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

      I just wrote that differently than it appears in the poem in order to explain. To me this is just a description of a place. I can call that 4 clues, but the 4 clues together describe one place. Not 2 places or more. And so there is no driving from one to the other.

      Folks that only allow that Take Canyon Down is a direction are never going to see it as a description. They will take it as an action. I combine it with his line about an 80 year old man is not going to go down i n a canyon and come back up. In my opinion, he is telling chasers they have been reading that line incorrectly. Result – (in Bob Marley voice) no Canyon, no drive


      • Lugnutz,

        In the 31 July 2017 PeopleExplains article, I think you have to consider the context. The article was detailing the Rio Grande deaths and I believe Forrest was referring to that specific canyon and the effort required for an 80 year old man to hike down and back up that canyon twice in one afternoon.

        You may be right but I wanted to offer another opinion on that statement.


        • Sourdough

          I appreciate the response and the thought.
          Paris did not go down into the canyon. I’m sorry if this is too graphic for anybody that may have known him.

          He tied a rope around a rock, thinking it would anchor him, and then leaned out over the rim.

          I think Forrest was making a general comment anc of course you may be right.

          My recollection is that Fenn made a comment that was similar after Rady died. Again I’m sorry to have to bring up these tragedies. That recollection is that Fenn said of Randy he was looking southwest when he should have been looking northeast. I cannot source this though. Anyone remember Fenn responding like this about Randys ex wanting him to reveal the location of Indulgence?


          • Hi Lug – I seem to remember that the rock was at the edge of the river and Parris went into the river tied to the rope to keep from getting swept away. Do you have a source that he was rapelling over the edge of the canyon?

        • Hi Lug: the place where Paris “anchored” was not hundreds of feet above the water, nor was it the Rio Grande. It was just above the river on the banks. Different situation from Randy as Paris was parked probably less than 50 meters from the river’s edge.

          • Zap

            I didn’t mention the Rio Grande or anything about hundreds of feet above, maybe someone else did.

            I was jus saying that I don’t think Fenn was referring to Paris when he said an 80 year old wouldn’t go down a canyon and back up.


        • Correction: was *not* the Rio Grande. I was thinking it was on the Rio Pueblo de Taos, but it was just below its junction with the Rio Grande. In any case, the river is right next to where he parked — no hiking into a canyon required. He was parked just north of the bridge where 567 meets 570.

        • I’m much less familiar with the specifics of Randy’s location, but I guess I had always assumed that Randy’s path required significant elevation loss (and more importantly gain), and that it was that specific solution that Forrest was addressing in his canyon remarks.

          Does anyone know what altitude loss (on foot) was required to get from where Randy parked to the river?

          • Zaphod, that is easy. The answer is none. Altitude is how high something is above the earth. The only altitude change would be from where his feet would rest on the floor board of the car to the ground. Now you do have elevation loss from his car to the river. That elevation loss, I’m guessing was about 10 feet. Semantics make all the difference in the Chase.

          • Slurbs: I would agree that elevation would have been a better word choice. However, when one went backpacking (in the days before GPS), one didn’t carry an elevationometer. They packed an altimeter. One of altitude’s many definitions is height relative to sea level.

    • Tim, I am not so convinced one should assume the word “you” is between “AND (you) TAKE it in the canyon down”. The ‘too far” may be a comment on the size of the canyon, perhaps even an identifying note. At the Begin point, look for a HOB. Put-in there, When you see it, it will not be as inviting as going down the canyon.

      • Hi OS2… I don’t “put in” until after I’ve taken the canyon down, and NFBTFTW…as the poem states too do.

        My “hoB” seems to actually have multiple purposes to its meaning, but they all reflect the same territory. I can count at least four different instances where “hoB” still points to what I have as a destination.

        One could actually include it as being a historical, a natural, AND a physical place that can be applied to a region in order to limit the search area.

        My hoB is quite near or possibly contains my WWWH. It all depends upon on you look at “the edge of civilization”.

        I’m still following the poem, by matching the poem to a landscape and then a specific place.

        Remember…I’ve visualized FF taking a Sunday drive thru the mountains…..a simple look at it.

        • Tim , if you’ve got a scenario that fits a place, work it & good luck to you. I envy you having so many HOB interpretations that fit your place.

          What I was stating was that NFBTFTW does not necessarily direct you to go down the canyon by another means than walking. It could mean TAKE IT in visually (the canyon scene), no need to go there at all. The canyon scene is a confirmation of the Begin place, not a directive to follow. I think there is a lot of misdirection going on. My eyes are wide open, its just my eyelids that are closed… or something like that comes to mind. OS2

          • I’ll disagree.

            I can include each comma in my solve at a place where it can be suitable and used as a direction.

            I even think they apply as directions in the first stanza.

            IMO they m could be relative, because with a bit of imagination, I can use them, and it actually leads me to to first clue….BIWWWH.

            I imagine FF in his car or just walking, looking at the poem, and speaking the first stanza to himself, all the while, carry the TC and heading to the location.

            I can also see this firlttng to a place that is at the edge of civilization, then moving in a certain about of distance between each left turn.

            It fits….hmmm….

            Cheers and good luck.

          • OS2

            I have mentioned Take It In before and no one cares. Actually one other person had that idea but I don’t really recall who.


    • Lug, sorry if I didn’t credit you with the concept. I hold no claim to it. It just popped in my head. I don’t follow the blogs & threads as consistently as you regulars do, and even if I did, I am at the age where ideas and memories are fleeting, floating, yachting, boating in and out of the harbor of my diminishing island of awareness. I know only that I’m not going down that canyon, and so I should shut up, but wheres the fun in that? OS2

  5. Carry-over humor…..
    curious hobbit commented:

    …in response to ken’s post…”no leg”…





      • One legged librarian’s name….Eileen.

        No disrepect meant, just an old joke I heard when I was a kid.

        Like a no armed guy who hands on the wall is named “Art”….. :o)

        Old school humor.
        ……just creating some smiles….I hope…..

    • Tim, isn’t Eilleen a lady with one leg shorter than the other?

      (kens lookin’ at you btw – RUN!! 🙂 )

    • More like posts disappearing, they were here now they’re gone. Not talking about the old thread, talking about this one.

  6. Ruminate or speculate
    the Key must be in site.
    With frozen glaze you will find the Blaze,
    as it points your way down.
    As my word is your bond,
    you will need traction to take action,
    to locate the cantonment site.
    Only creatures to give witness,
    to your broken trail into the light,
    before you can take flight.

  7. Zap…thanks for your reply on the last “Key Word” in reference to my query. Being hesitant to offer up an “exact” radius is a bit overly cautious given the circumstances. I understand though.
    I have always paid attention to the abernomalations…but never put them in the laboratory for study. Only recently(couple months ago) have I actually gotten organized enough to put them to work.
    I have two hotspots miles apart that I tend to focus on. One is only sentimental in nature…the other(newer) has my attention. I have plugged(quick count) about 65 Easter Eggs into an area with a 5-7 mile radius. Some are more blatant than others…some have multiple references in different ways, but all are clearly relevant enough to pay attention to.
    I have taken a little bit of time to look at other arbitrary areas, and found that some of the EEggs can be directly linked to them too. So…I would not put all of the Eggs in one basket amigo. Thanks for sharing.

    • Hi ken — it is an important exercise to run a control experiment. Pick any spot far from your area(s) of focus and see how many EEggs (I like that) you can “manufacture” that will fit that area. Between the poem, three books, and over 200 Scrapbooks/Vignettes/Passages/Q&As etc. you are guaranteed to find some. If the ratio of target matches to control matches is small (e.g. 4 or less), then those target “matches” are not statistically meaningful, and probably just happenstance. If the ratio is greater than 10:1, then that is probably a good sign.

  8. I would think “tight focus” is probably as important as any part of his statement. That doesn’t seem to me a casual word choice.

    • I perceive ( tight focus) the statement with the same importance. Key word is a misnomer towards word that is key. Very different perception trigger.

    • “Tight” means drunk, in some circles.

      Things that can be focused include attention and various
      sets of lenses.

      Whew! Thyme for a tranquilizer!

      All my opinion.

    • **** Meadowlark suggested – ““tight focus” is probably as important as any part of his statement. That doesn’t seem to me a casual word choice.” ****

      I agree, especially with the full phrase “IN tight focus” in the context (as Jeremy P pointed out) of the search at the time.

      If searchers had (intentionally) been within 200 feet of the TC and walked on by, not knowing they had been so close, this may have been ff’s attempt to rein them in, the idea being the word “in” itself.

      in there
      in the canyon down
      in below the home of Brown
      in peace
      in the wood

      Not a magic key that unlocks the secret meaning while a choir of angels sings, but a push in the direction of the scale of the area (a small destination in a huge location).

      The BotG 2-clue 200-feeters needed to tighten there search, but instead expanded it and “walked on by.”

      Can we maybe even re-translate ff’s oddly phrased negative answer about Li’l-Indy into a positive?

      She CANNOT get closer than the first two clues = she CAN get as close as 200 feet?

      Since last winter’s rest and re-orientation, I’m in with those in the small destination camp, where most of the clues are related to that small destination rather than its huge location.


  9. Hi Birdie…
    Carry-over from previous part…

    1. What state are you in?
    – already out here on the blogs….and others know….I said I won’t put it out again.
    2. Do you have more than one blaze, like many in here do?
    – I don’t have a blaze yet, but have also remarked on different types that may exist…IMO it will be a cairn….or multiple cairns.
    3. Do you have to cross bodies of water from WWWH, if so, how many times?
    – not yet I have…but my next trip will include doing this step. I’ve realized “worth the cold” is a reference to crossing “cold” water.
    4. Does your “marvel gaze” have anything to do with star gazing?
    – No. My “marvel gaze” is scrutiny and wonder….as with imagination.
    5. How far is it from your WWWH to your blaze?
    – since I don’t have a blaze yet, I’ve been working on the commas, which I think is connected. I’ve posted on the use of commas in the poem, and I now think that they reflect directions…this could be markets on a blaze….as what you would see while walking a trail. It is very plausible and works in “many directions” like FF implied. A cairns is circular as well.
    6. Have you figured out what the dancing gypsies mean or represent?
    – nope…I normally will review ANd or those similar refences, but in honesty…I went looking for FF and his adventures, not his stories. Too many rabit holes….shoot…what # are they on…#128? or higher?
    7. Is there a Sedan near your blaze?
    8. Knowing your own strength & health, how long do you think it will take you to go from your car to the treasure in one trip?
    5 -10 minutes. FF knows the details of the area very well. Knows where to park easily.
    9. Would you be able to bring a 2 year old with you to your spot safely?
    No. Too much trouble to mind a child. Mine are all grown up…this is my play time with adults! :o)
    10. Do you think that the statement of 4 cards & a joker has anything to do with poker?
    – hmmm….good question…as I relly never efined this statement fully. 5 of a kind usually wins the hand?
    11. Why does a 79 or 80 year hid a treasure he can’t carry in one trip?
    Because 40#s is pretty heavy….you won’t throw out your back of you cut the weight.
    12. Have you found the beaver in TTTC?
    LOL…..hehehe…I was supposed to be looking for one? I didn’t, but then again, I’ve ventured down the “WWWH was related to a beaver dam” at one time, then FF said “no dams”. I moved on, and checked,of a brown beaver Ihad a play. I never really found anything suitable enough for me to investigate.
    13. Do you know what the 96 is in reference too?
    – nope….my solve only has used “8.25”….and now “23”….numbers and what nots, I’ve never used, because I feel them to be cipher related.

    Ciphers being applied to the poem is not necessary according to what FF said to do. Why bother if the Game Master said we don’t need them. To me, it sounds like a waste of time.

    But then again….some of the notions people have come up with, seem like they did come up with relative details… hints.

    Where those written into the poem?

    That would be a question for FF – I really don’t know if these are just coincidental or actualities.

    Hope that helps.

    Good luck to you.

  10. So, this is a great thread and has input from most of my favorite players, therefore I have decided to contribute.

    I believe there is (for some irrational reason) a very strong human desire for each us to insert “something” into the chase which Forrest never put there… And this is very much like forcing a particular location to conform to the poem and subsequently our personal 9 clues.

    When it comes to “hints”, this tendency just gets worse! IT really becomes the wild, wild, west on the subject of HINTS.
    NOTE: for the sake of discussion Clues here will only refer to the 9 clues hidden in the poem and do not refer to the 11-13 “clues” which Forrest provided during his time on the Today show and/or otherwise (I think of these more as limits or bounds for the search, similar to the map published in Too Far To Walk). Everything else Forrest has said or written will someday be seen clearly with hindsight; these are the Hints.

    (If someone wants to debate or argue about “my” definition of what qualifies as a “clue” – PLEASE do not – my labels are only meant to provide a differentiation for purposes of discussion in this post)

    Forrest has made it as clear as he can that the poem contains the Clue’s and they are in order and if followed precisely, will lead a searcher with confidence to the treasure chest’s hidden location. And he has said the searcher will most likely not know for sure of their solve until they actually leave in peace with the chest.

    He has the idea that the searcher who finds the treasure “will be positive in their attitude and deliberate in their actions.”

    I point all this out, only to stress, even for that person with a “correct solve” – the clues still won’t be concretely known as truth… … let alone the possible many “HINTS.” Therefore, debating the legitimacy of “hints” seems to me a missed place use of resources and perhaps why Forrest says, “read the blogs for entertainment.”

    OK, now as to the Clues in the poem containing numbers… …for the purpose of precision? Let me quote Forrest again;
    -the person who finds the treasure will go in confidence
    -will go with a smile
    -there will be nothing accidental about it
    -the clues if followed precisely,
    -look for the clues in my poem and try to marry them to a place on a map.
    -[Read] the poem like you’re going to put an ‘X’ on a map
    -map makers asked if I wanted an ‘X’ on the map, I declined but must admit that it is there in spirit
    -others were at the starting point I think their arrival was an aberration
    -I can’t imagine a searcher getting within 12’ of the treasure and not finding it
    -straight forward
    -no red herrings
    -no false leads
    -no subterfuge
    -tricky to interpret

    The poem clearly has two levels; the apparent or literal and the hidden or figurative – both are honest.
    However, both are NOT precise. There is absolutely NO precision (NOR confidence) in any location derived from purely a literal interpretation of the poems lines… There are simply TOO many locations in the Rocky Mountains between Santa Fe, NM and the Canadian Border which have:
    -lone places -WWWH -no place for meek -wise blaze -must go -listen good -to boldly go -canyon down -ever drawing nigh -look down to cease -trove to seek -worth cold -secret -NFBTFTW -no paddle up creek -tarry & marvel gaze -answers known -in the wood -new & old -HOB -heavy & high -go in peace -tired & weak – titled gold

    In compilation, no literal interpretation of 9 clues gives an exact & only one possible location for the treasure.

    Even more simply stated; Forrest has said that if you don’t know where warm waters halt then you might as well stay home and play canasta. You must BEGIN here AND how would a searcher definitively and with confidence identify a “starting point,” where warm waters halt using a literal interpretation of this?

    It’s just NOT possible.

    For another example we can look at “the blaze”:
    In Questions for Forrest a woman asked a specific question regarding the “blaze” – Forrest answers: “Well, it has been thirty minutes now and I think I’ll pass on the question.”

    Now if I view this as a “hint” since Forrest obviously didn’t have to choose her question out of all the possible questions to answer, but chose to give instead (what looks like on the surface) a nonsensical answer, then:
    A “pass” becomes a specified path through the mountains…
    On a literal level then: “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze” line can simply mean; “If from the previous sentences, you have found or followed the right path through the mountains.”

    But once again these could be any mountains, at any pass so without discovering the definitive figurative meanings of the previous sentences – you have canasta again!

    More thoughts:
    What does a “Key” do for a map? (“in tight focus with a word that is key”)
    How would logic be used to determine the treasure location? (“use logic to determine an important clue to the treasures location”)

    Also, here is an anomaly I discovered in Google’s word definitions (which is what Forrest uses)
    The word “found” can mean:
    “(of poetry) fformed by taking a piece of non-poetic text and reinterpreting its structure metrically.”
    Please notice the “ff” misspelling of the word “formed” (I don’t know what to make of that anomaly).
    Regardless, this definition means that the clues in the previous sentences might be non-poetic text which have been reinterpreted metrically (the KEY word here being INTERPRETED). So I believe that both precision and confidence cannot be achieved in the search for the treasure without there being specific distances or a specific ‘X’s’ as a hidden clue in the poem…

    Keeping all this in mind brings me to my point regarding “hints”: everything that Forrest Fenn has written or said online or in interviews provides the search community with what I like to think of as “artifacts.” Making a collection of these artifacts (e.g. curious words or turns of phrases, persons, places and things) creates a tool box in our notes or in our minds that allow us to see things in our interpretations or while in the cold & in the woods. These artifacts inform us and since there can be NO level of confidence regarding the nature of hints – each searcher will need to develop their own collection of these with the hopes that when useful, will bring a smile!!!

    As to the “word that is key” – Jeremy is very correct regarding the timing of the comment and the aggregate success of searchers to correctly identify clues to that date, however being the clues are successive and knowing where to Begin is an essential first step – figuring out the word’s interpretation will continue to be important for searchers going into the future. And although “home” is the word which is key in line 8 of Stanza #2, it is not the word which Forrest was referring to. Forrest used the phrase “in tight focus” for a reason because, as has been mentioned, most of the lines have words that our key for their correct interpretation.

    So for posterity and future searchers, the Key word is: Canyon…


    • GCG –

      Okay I will begin by supposing that I agree with your idea of collecting artifacts.

      If that’s true:
      How many do I need?
      Did Fenn plan this from the beginning?

      I like to ask people about what they see as hints or artifacts because they are often crazy. Some see clues in what its normal meaning to others. Some make giant leaps when it comes to hints. Some talk about hints but have nothing to relate it to.

      If anyone reads a hint and that hint reaffirms something they already knew it’s probably false. Can the same hint be applied elsewhere? OR often someone will need to have an encyclopedic knowledge of Indian culture or the history of Americans in the West.

      It’s a infinite gibberish with sporadic cohesion.

      Welcome to the Home of Dal!

      • What I’m about to say is a metaphor more than what I have thought out thoroughly …

        The veracity of hints is cloaked in uncertainty but the magic of hints real or perceived can serve to remove the veils of our predisposition.

        In a way they can unlock new creativity and drive us to view the poem and its unknown clues in new ways.

        IF a searcher is stuck, psychologically finding something in Forrest’s words that might be a hint can act as a touch stone to fresh thinking and get a searcher out of a rut…

        The trick is to then step back and be rational – not ridged – flexible, artistic even, able to bend, but not CRAZY.

        There must be a good logic otherwise this treasure hunt is a fools errand!


        • Oh and I forgot the flip side of crazy…


          I’ve read some amazing renditions of “solves” but some are so completely dependent on specialized knowledge at best they are fantastical contrivances and at worst psychotically delusional.

          Forrest has said that he believes people will be surprised how straight forward the solve turns out to be.

          The trick is to “think-deeply” but not far-out there…

          Forrest believes in the supremacy of imagination NOT knowledge so let me give you another Albert Einstein quote that is very applicable:

          “No problem can be solved from the same level of consciousness that created it.”


          • And not to be taken as self-righteous – I know this from experience; here is my delusion.

            My solve took me to the general location of the treasure but the exact path to the final spot was still unsure however I was positive that my final location was with in the requisite 12′ and after reviewing video carefully, I became convinced that this one (not to large stone) marked the spot.


            Because there seemed to be a Scant bit of Tarry substance on the rock which resembled an Astonished Face looking back at me (read Marvel Gaze) – from my observation position that I was “Looking Down” from!

            I had done some research on the word Gaze and found that in Art Education there is the fairly well known concept called the “Gaze” which refers to how in a painting or movie or piece of writing there is a person in the artwork which appears to be looking at the viewer of the art.

            Today we refer to this as “breaking the 4th wall.”

            Anyway I became convinced that this was exactly what Forrest intended, that the process of finding his treasure through his poem and memoirs made him immortal in a spiritual sense since each time a person embarks on the Chase, the breath of his life flows into them – like a holy possession, if you will.

            So I began to believe this Gaze was the final consummation – just as you gazed down on the resting spot of the chest, the resting spot of the Chest amazingly gazed back at you…

            To me the poem and the chase are like a finely crafted piece of artwork and so this seemed a perfect resolution.

            Brilliant maybe… … delusional – absolutely!


          • GCG—-
            I really enjoy reading your posts. I really like your take on Forrest saying “I’ll pass”. I truly hadn’t thought of that— though I am fairly certain his response is a hint.

            I call it an “indefinite hint” because I’m sure it is a hint, but not sure where it is supposed to lead.

            “Canyon” may very well be the word, who knows? But keep posting–it is very thought provoking.

        • GCG –

          Sage words my friend.
          I agree of course.
          I hope you are always able to listen to your own words.


      • “infinite gibberish with sporadic cohesion”
        – Lugnutz

        That’s gonna be the title of my first album or the epitaph on my tombstone. . .

        . . . whichever comes first.


        • Ha!

          Thanks Jake. I stand by that description of the chase.

          Just when you think it can’t get crazier a new cowboy always liked in.

          Just when you think it’s going to fly apart a shining lasso pulls it back together.


          • Aw, ya old Lug.

            A cowboy with a golden lasso, that’s the nicest thing anyone’s said to me

            Funny thing is I can’t believe more of you didn’t jump on the definition anomaly I pointed out for “found” ??? Or comment on the specific definition — Curious.

            Did any of you search Google for yourself – the anomaly persist to this day. I thought for sure Jeremy would have lassoed this tidbit.

            Finally I wanted to ask you guys if you agree with the idea that the poem is “literally” honest?

            To be clear, do you believe that if we hypothesize for the sake of a defined scenario, Forrest hid the treasure in a very small canyon area and a searcher were by chance to find the “warm waters that halt,” in this canyon and then proceed to methodically combed all the creeks and high waters – would they or could they find the treasure?

            Or do you guys believe that really only the clues hidden in the poem reveal the actual way Forrest hid the treasure and may or may not involve actual warm waters, canyons, creeks etc.?


          • GCG

            I am sorry, but I must have missed the Found thing.

            Will you please tell me about it? And what you think about it or how it helps?


          • GCG;

            Forrest once said, “There are nine clues in the poem, and the clues are in consecutive order. If you want to find the treasure chest – you have my book there – I’ll tell you how to do it. Read the book just normally … the poem and the rest of the book, and then go back and read the poem 6, 8, 10 times – study every line, every word. Then after you do that, read the book again, slowly, with the idea of looking for clues or hints, that are in the book that will help you follow the clues. You can find the chest with just the clues, but there are hints in the book that will help you with the clues.” f

            That pretty well sums it up for me.
            1) “There are nine clues in the poem, and the clues are in consecutive order.
            2) Read the book just normally … the poem and the rest of the book, and then go back and read the poem 6, 8, 10 times
            3) – study every line, every word.
            4) Then after you do that, read the book again, slowly, with the idea of looking for clues or hints, that are in the book that will help you follow the clues. ”

            Step-by-step instructions for the do-it-yourselfer! JMO JDA

          • Hi JDA.

            “I’ll tell ya how to do it.”

            Can’t get more direct than that.

            Cheers and good luck.

          • p.s. – Literal interpretation – There IS a wwwh place, there IS a canyon etc. Sure, lots of imagination required but still leteral – JDA

    • GCG…Hey, I was going to write the exact same thing, word for word…but you beat me to it!
      Just kidding…I really liked your post and it lends a lot of really great thoughts to ponder. I agree especially with your concept of “artifacts”. That’s a good one ! I’ll digest the rest and comment again.

      • oz10

        Yes I believe in mind palaces
        Not being born with a photographic memory and being to lazy to build one – they are powerfully substitutes…

    • Hello GCG. I enjoyed reading what you had to say. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us.

    • GCG…I am still digesting your words of wisdom in reference to your interpretation on how to interpret Fenn’s poem. It is well written for sure.
      I almost always read the last few lines of things before I read the beginning(old habit) and your last sentence is preventing me from truly seeing what the message is.
      Maybe you could shed some light on “why” you have plucked “canyon” out of thin air as the word that is key. It sounds eerily familiar with another’s ideas from some time ago. Just wondering…

      • Ken,
        My wife says I’ve got a big mouth and shouldn’t share anything however I don’t feel that’s in alignment with the spirit of the chase.

        I read the forums for the same reasons I read Forrest’s body of works – to get out of my own head, to discover hints, to find inspiration however the forums also help me eliminate what’s NOT working.

        I’ve told close friends, that although my solve is good work, it stands on the shoulders of 6 Plus years of trial & error…

        I’m sorry but I have given enough to the search community to solve that for themselves.

        Lastly I haven’t read every forum post – to what eerily familiar past post do you refer?


        • GCG…”eerily” sends the wrong message. It was not meant to put you on your guard. Canyon just struck a chord in reference to an off the wall idea from the past that was presented here. Canyon mountain canyon canyon something….it matters not. Clearly not relevant here.
          Your wife may be right…but usually that one is used to camouflage something entirely different. HA!
          At any rate…good post worth the read for sure…but I do not agree with “canyon”.
          Whilst you are here….I also found your vision about Art and marvel gaze nicely put together. Couple what you said with the thoughts of Fenn’s comments about thumbs, palettes, forgeries and other references. Try squinting your eyes when viewing some pieces of Art. Surprising what can be seen.
          Thanks for your time…and happy hunting. You didn’t give anything away…just some good insights.

          • Yes, The idea of the Gaze totally fit into the schema of Forrest life and the many stories he has specifically shared with us. It was too seductive for me to resist even though I had a fair number of reasons not to go down the rabbit hole.

            I do Squint at artwork when going to the museum or otherwise – I’ve have tried squinting at the poem, I have reversed its colors and looked for things to appear in the “negative” spaces of the poem (“don’t mess with my poem. f”).

            Permutation after permutation, mind experiment after mind experiment, definitions on top of definitions, miles & miles of canyons & creeks, systematic breakdowns of maps and more maps, etc etc etc…

            What I can do is clarify how I “plucked” canyon from thin air… … I didn’t!

            I looked at the timing of Forrest comment regarding the “word that is key” like Jeremy described and at the time (and really still today) the search community as a whole hadn’t gotten even the first 2 clues (“only a few are in tight focus”). Forrest had simultaneously said that only a few searchers had correctly identified Clues 1 & 2 and others had sort of been in the right location but didn’t know really understand the poem and had arrived there only by (mostly) chance…(“aberration”).

            So what or where are searchers stumbling in their interpretation of the poem – canyon – that’s where.


          • Yup…squinting only works where intended for sure, but mostly with “Impressionists” in terms of paintings.
            Massive rabbit hole in some ways…but not all.
            Interesting comment on Fenn’s “timing” involving his comments and your “canyon” still don’t make sense and that’s cool with me really…you own it.
            I’ll just say it…I am not certain of anything here in relation to why Fenn made that statement(word that is key), but I have always held true to the fact that he has said that discounting any of the words is risky.
            That keeps me in check before I go to far in any one direction putting more importance on one over another. Nouns nouns nouns…which are nouns and which appear to be nouns?
            Good posts GCG !
            I want some dang verbs! ACTION…

    • GCG,

      They changed it on google… but I saw it. Now it reads:

      (of poetry) formed by reinterpreting metrically the structure of a nonpoetic text.

      Do you think that is the (figurative) definition that ff meant? How will you explain that concept of reinterpreting -metrically- the nonpoetic text?

      It also means: make (an article) by melting and molding metal.

      • OZ10, GCG….
        I think both the “poetic” and “make an article” definitions have merit if taken in context wit Fenn’s statements about “architect’ and his many about his works with metal. Melding also comes to mind…which has a connotation to some card games.

          • I believe there is one blaze, Oz10, on site.
            How the correct interpretation of the clues pans out to arrive there…remains to be seen.

      • Oz10 and GCG –

        I really like the idea that Wise and Found the Blaze could mean Have Knowledge and Formed the Gun or something along those lines. I think that fits with needed to learn more about the words we use.

        Maybe been to the place where guns are forged or fire is forged?


        • Lug, yes as in a foundry. Can we incorporate both meanings? The non poetic text must be melted (mixed). THAT will describe the physical blaze as well. You went for guns, I was thinking about a sword. I ended up bringing a knife to a gun fight… Lol

          • melding…mixing…tying/blending words…
            A simple set of exact directions “shaped” into a poem.

        • Lug,

          Always comes out Gun’s blazing…

          Ya, you could interpret this line this way and it would IMO provide a confirmatory hint as to the if you have been wise.

          Forrest said that he has examined his own poem from every possible angle and its not intended to be underhanded but it is “tricky to interpret.” And in my experience, even with the interpretation, correctly laying it out on the location continues to be tricky.

          “It’s no place for the meek,”


          • GCG

            Here s what I like about using Found in this way. We have asked many times about the odd phrasing. Been wise and Found the Blaze.

            Now we can explain that the idea is just to solve the as opposed to follow the direction.

            So Forge the Gun can be a reference to a location and you make an x there. The famous forgein Sante Fe or an active volcano in Colorado. If this is a solid interpretation it would limit the possibilities nicely.

            I’m going to take s hard look at developing others clues in this manner.


      • **** Oz10 wondered – “How will you explain that concept of reinterpreting -metrically- the nonpoetic text?” ****

        Found Poetry – poetry formed by reinterpreting metrically the structure of a non-poetic text.

        Here’s an example of metrically reinterpreting the prose (non-poetic) structure of a text:

        Perhaps I was spared
        to tell a tranquil story
        that unfolded upon me without a scar
        or even a bad dream,
        but has provided such a profundity of emotions
        that still dwell deep,
        and resonate inside of me.
        I am coming to that.

        So it is with me now,
        as I sit here past midnight,
        with only myself to know.

        (The original prose text that I metrically re-structured into the “found poem” above may well be recognized by many here.)

        ((See also “Found Art” or “Found Object”))


        • Guys,

          I don’t know if this is the first serious discussion on the forum regarding the word “found” in the poem, but it is the key word of this line and it tells the “wise” searcher … … a lot of info!

          I’ll leave it up to your imaginations but I believe it has possibly three separate ways its intended to be used.

          Here is a little more info for deep-thinking:
          “found” is the past and past participle of “find” and the definition of “find” is:

          – discovering something after a deliberate search.
          and even more interestingly:
          – ascertain (something) by study, calculation, or inquiry.
          and finally my favorite because its a NOUN:
          – a discovery of something valuable, typically something of archaeological interest.


          • Don’t put me on the spot to cite exact threads…but these things have been touched on, here and elsewhere. Perhaps not verbatim, but generally.
            Please understand that what you say GCG is interesting …but it is also an opinion…not to be mistaken as gospel.
            You could also tie “found” to several other interesting words by the same methods you are using.
            Keep them coming…good posts.

          • ken, at this point I think everything has been touched on but some topics deserve more attention than others and I think this one is one of those. There are multiple definitions to this word that are right up his alley. I can see ff looking this one up in the dictionary. It will be a perfect word to obfuscate something. Maybe I just like more the conversations about hints to the poem than hints to the books. Or hints to the hints…

        • Yes Jake,

          That is how it’s typically done – fine example by the way – that was one of my favorite Forrest Fenn essay endings; “with only myself to know.” Ain’t that the truth.

          “Don’t you just love stories like that?”

          However you could possibly take more artistic license or as Fenn likes to say; bend the meaning a bit…


      • I have sat ed in the past….in some manner or another….

        ” I envision FF making a Sunday drive through the mountains.”

        – figuratvely
        – flow of the poem
        – non-chalant approach
        – hides information in plain sight
        – fits a non-poetic/poetic design
        + it is a treasure map AND a poem

        You wrote:
        “How will you explain that concept of reinterpreting -metrically- the nonpoetic text?”
        – the construction of the poem is built upon a premise – a hidden chest exists. This is the root of the puzzle…all lines point to this subject. If one were to apply “metrics” to to the poem/hunt – I would also include in those conclusions, statics, probability, and of course logic. You should use all three of these systems for each question you ask yourself concerning each step you make. Examples of such questions could be….

        Is the choice statistically probable?

        Is the choice systematically acceptable to the flow of the poem?

        Is it logical that an 80 yr old man will make the trek in this direction and/or safely?

        Three questions for each choice is a minimum questionaire each clue can have involvement with.

        How deep you go is by all means your choice.

        Cheers and good luck.

        • Tim,

          This could be an example of what you have been talking about regarding the word that is key? It is there, hidden in plain sight but it could bring another layer to the sentence if used with an alternate definition. Not saying that is the word that is key, but in this stanza, it could very well be a key to that line.

    • GCG, you said:

      A “pass” becomes a specified path through the mountains…
      On a literal level then: “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze” line can simply mean; “If from the previous sentences, you have found or followed the right path through the mountains.”

      Agree 100% and IMO, you must be in tight focus to recognize that path.

      • Sourdough,

        It was tempting to agree with you initially but I don’t believe Forrest Fenn used that expression in strict regards to the path you take from, “the home of Brown.”

        I believe you have to be “in tight focus with a word that is key” in order to reach “home of Brown” and know with confidence you are in the right place.


        • You could be right GCG, since it seems this is about the spot in the poem where searchers get the first few clues right and go by the rest. Though I’m not sure about your statement “in order to reach “home of Brown””. We are told to put in below it and so many do not pay attention to the world below. Do you think we should also physically be at home of Brown?

          • Aaron
            Let me answer 2 ways

            If you lived on a hill and I parked in your driveway; would I be at the home of Aaron or below the home of Aaron?


          • GCG said “If you lived on a hill and I parked in your driveway; would I be at the home of Aaron or below the home of Aaron?”

            In that case you could be both but are you saying that we should just assume HoB and below HoB are the same place?

            I tend to think that by below we are either lower in elevation than HoB or south of HoB. How far below I am not sure. I am interested in others opinions though.

          • Hi Aaron.

            You are right it can be.

            Another example is this….let’s say….

            ….that my search region is over 300 miles square and is a forest. Although “brown/Brown” things may live in or are part of the forest, it is not my hoBrown, because I know my hoB is actually north of the forest I am searching in. (“Put in below the home of Brown [period/stop]”)

            It fits the puzzle nicely.

            If my BIWWWH is on the edge of a civilization….and if I were to travel around an area I have chosen – to a certain location and then “put in below the hoB”….I’ve still met the parameters of the instructions within the map.

            And I might add….it is quite difficult to find a “put in” spot around any forest that is larger than 50 feet. Some may take years….some may get lucky.

            IMO – it as part of the “internal map” and not part of the “external poem” – at this time and probably will be a hard time to push me away from doing so. What is this?…more Duality.

            My hoB may be close to 100 miles away from the forest (“in the wood”) I am searching.

            If you notice, there are vague words within the poem that “give directions”, but not fully.

            This would – IMO – require the seeker to look for directions within the words themselves.
            (“I would pay attention to the nouns”) – paraphrased.

            One must think outside the box with this line.

            Cheers and good luck.

          • I keΩΩ

            I didn’t say that at all.

            I am saying hoB should be north of WWWH and/or can only be known if you know where to start,….”Begin it where WWWH.”


          • Hi KeΩΩ.

            “I’m thinking if HoB was that big I would have heard about.”

            I take it you haven’t been in a forest that is that big?

            Most US forests are very large.

            BTW – you should be observing, not listening for a definition.

            How can you hear on how big a forest is?

            Odd response.

            Good luck.

          • I just heard you say “Most US forests are very large”.

            Not that I think HoB is a forest.

            Why should I be observing and not listening for definition? Seems that would limit my mental capacity, which is limited enough as it is.

          • I’m sorry KeΩΩ….I probably wasn’t clear enough in my attempt to explain my ok noon or theory.

            I think this particular “clue” – below the hoB – is a forest.

            It is only logical throughout my research. Now as for my “hoB”….well….to me….it is a place north of a forest one needs to search.

            It fits well with the poem and landscape. Especially if you are acknowledging that FF is a woodswman, frontiersman, adventurer AND he hid it in the RMs which is primarily forest country.

            Difficult not impossible.

            The difficulty is determining how both clues Conklin.


            “Am I talking in circles?”

            I get it Ken….I how you can bust my thoughts open. Being honest and true to the words, well… one yet has been to justify something to be inaccurate.

            I’m glad you are attempting to fool me.,,,these are good moves IMO.

            It frees your mind to think,outside the box….using your complete imagination of seeing and hearing and feeling and wonder and indecision and everything.

            That is how the puzzle will be solved…..a complete look at the poem as a map, and once done, add it then to the landscape.

            Good thoughts sir.

            Good luck.

          • First off….

            I HATE AUTOCORRECT!!!

            “The difficulty is determining how both clues Conklin.”

            No. Sheez….should have been…..”how both clues conjoin.”

            There also was another comment “I wrote” – NOT!….that used “fool me”. I wasn’t thinking that at all, as I know there is no one that can fool me, it would be of my own doing I fool myself…..but more so l meant that…..on how you are trying to find an error in my thoughts is great thinking. It may debunk mine and yours, or give us some finer details we may have missed.

            My apologies for the errors in the post. There may be others…just ask, and I’ll correct them if needed.

          • I know….why?

            I can understand some words like rope becoming ripe or rape….but reap?

            Conjoin = Conklin



          • Difficult, but not impossible.

            Limiting your hoB to a small area or region – IMO – is a mistake many will make.


          • Assuming HoB is actually as large as you think it is, if not then the mistake is on you.

            Below HoB could simply be a reference to latitude.

          • “Down” can be down in elevation – Not necessarily south Could be North, East, West, or anything in between – JDA

          • “How could HoB be north of WWWH if you Begin it where WWWH and Take it in the canyon Down?”

            If I understand Tom correctly, we are told to BIWWWHATIITCD (which is a place) and later comes PIBTHOB (which is another place); BIWWWHATIITCD could just be a description of place #1 with no command for us to TIITCDNFBTFTW, and then FF later tells us to PITTHOB, which is a command for us to do something, and HOB (place #2) happens to be situated to the North of place #1 (WWWH).

          • Are you replying to me or Tom or Aaron?

            Your reply was to Aaron, but you mention Tom and quote what I said.

          • That is pretty close B. No worries on the name.

            I simplified it by saying…

            My hoB is about 100 miles north of WWWH.

            One needs to understand the importance of hoB in order to understand on how it applies to the poem.

            One will have to go south, in order to put in below the hoB, but if you don’t know where hoB is, you may never truly understand it’s meaning and application to the map.

            I won’t go any further than that.


          • I know…..*winks*….

            Any further I “wood” have to kill you.

            *in his best Akmed the Terrorist voice*

            I KEEEL YOU!!


          • KeΩΩ—I was responding to you—These “Reply” boxes sometimes get lost in all the comments so I just scrolled up to the last one that was apparent on my screen to post my reply, and was why I quoted you.
            Just offering my take on “TimTom’s” post that you were questioning.

            Tim – 100 miles is quite a distance and definitely falls into the “Big Picture” category. My own key word / word that is key has HOB much closer. Now it’s my turn to say “I won’t go any further than that.”

          • Hi Bowmarc…

            Just applying the macro (birdseye view) to the micro (BOTG view). The Big picture to the “scant” look we need to make. Duality.

            It works for me.

            I’m happy with the notions I’ve used.

            Is “hoB” a key word?…..nah….just another place one needs to know in order to solve the clues.

            Is it a clue? Yes. Because it gets you closer to the TC…as “defined by FF” on what a clue is with retrospect on what a hint is.

            Good luck.

  11. Has anyone thought that he actually is using his jars in this as well? Once you find the first jar there is a second layer of instructions? You can’t actually follow the poem correctly without the extra set of clues. Perhaps this is why you HAVE to start at the beginning and how he KNOWS it’s not been found. Just thinking out loud about those jars and their involvement. I really want one of those jars.

    • Copper – I have hypothesized that one of his jars is buried next to Ojo Caliente Hot Spring in YNP. And that it has a bar of biodegradable soap in it. So I can just sleep in my car on The Chase, and then bathe there, before I head over in my sedan to start at my Begin it at my WWWH at Madison Junction. I hope there is a copy of his autobiography in there, so I will have something to read while I soak.

      • Hi Lisa –

        Here is another one of those questions we can try if you don’t mind.

        Why Ojo Caliente in YNP?


        • Lugnutz – blBecause when I read Forrest’s website, a few days after I joined The Chase, because the site was published on the NBC News broadcast page, I saw that River Bathing is Best was based there. I took that as a recommendation to go take a bath. The location of the Bells iand Jars are not based on the Poem. And he said he buried them.

          And FYI that I told Forrest I would not buy any of his books until I found the bronze chest, and went to Collected Works to buy all of them for his signature, when I brought the bronze chest back to him. And I’m going to hold to that.

          • Ok, this is a good conversation.

            Forrest does not say he was at Ojo Caliente. Faulker used to say he was at Ojo Caliente all the time, proabbly still does. If you know the source for that knowledge I would like to see it.

            Dal was there, I know that.

            As tot he books, I was going to buy you two of them but I understand your pact. The last time you mentioned an email to Forrest I asked you if he replied. To me that’s the only way to know he has read your email. If he hasn’t replied you have no pact. You may feel it’s good luck anyway.


          • I don’t mean to be negative Lisa but I believe one who avoids Forrest’s books will have a slim chance of finding the chest.

          • I never read his books either. I have always maintained that I will after the chase is over. Are you basing your admonishment on a 7 plus years of proof? Just saying. We are still in the experimental stage are we not.

          • Why do you think that, after F. said all anyone needs to find the treasure is the poem and a good map?

          • Lugnutz – Right. You said you can connect to links, but you can’t see the pictures. River Bathing is Best and most of the stories from TTOTC are available under the blog tab on Forrest’s site. There is a picture of Ojo Caliente and a nice video Dal made there.
            Maybe.Dal will chime in here and confirm that Ojo Caliente is the spot where Forrest bathed.

            And again, I don’t need the books, because I can Google search most everything in them here on these blogs. Or I can go to Forrest’s site.

            And yes, Forrest has answered my emails on occasion. But I made no sort of packed with him only a declaration of my intention.

        • ken -. Actually, you are not allowed to use biodegradable soap in Hot Springs. I found that out when I was reading a description of the Gold Bug Hot Springs near Challis, North of town here. Someone else must have thought of my idea and caused trouble there.

          I will have to sneak into Ojo Caliente under cover of darkness with a shovel. But I think I remember Forrest saying he submerged himself when I Grizz approached. So maybe not.

        • No worries Lisa. The Grizzz ain’t gonna care anyhow! Soap or no soap! Oh…and about that shovel….never mind. ha ha hey

  12. Oh yeah!

    I can’t remember who brought up Row 4, Block 23 (thanks !)

    I never really keyed in on it before however let me quote Forrest:
    “there is no substitute for thinking and planning and observing and looking at maps”

    And to my surprise, there it was!!!

    For fun, I’ve been thinking about putting together my comprehensive list of “hints” both as a good exercise and to just see how many there actually are – it might be amazing…


          • Sparrow

            I will share another though…

            On Jenny’s Mysterious Writings site a Question posted 6/29/2014: by a charming lady named Ellen is very long and heart felt

            Forrest answer is equally long and also charming – And it appears as if that’s all but Fenn is a magician of sorts – particularly words and the question centered around Poets but Fenn’s answer focused on the importance of Words, NOT the poet.

            It’s interesting for me to note that often I feel like I speak Fenn-eese.

            “For those who have ears let them hear”

            So he closes his answer with the following:
            “There is poetry for all occasions and sometimes I startle even myself with words that I can remember. As we all know, words can both sooth and alarm your pulse, and that’s what makes it so interesting.f”

            Poetry for all occasions signals TTOTC poem

            I surprise myself with words I remember signals specific words in TTOTC

            And the phrase “alarm your pulse” means Thrilling but it is also a reference to interpret “heavy loads”

          • Also Sparrow,

            I used the word AMAZING because it is my sneaking suspicion that the reason Forrest may feel he has given the search community enough is because if you were to take an exhaustive and comprehensive look at is questions and answers and interviews and the books and began laying them out according to the lines and words in the poem, a pattern would appear and it would become clear that he has given specific hints for the interpretation and vocabulary of everything…

            So its all in plain site for the right person to come along and put it all the artifacts together!


    • GCG wrote: ” I’ve been thinking about putting together my comprehensive list of “hints” both as a good exercise and to just see how many there actually are – it might be amazing”
      If you haven’t found the chest, how do you know they are real “hints”?

      Ken (in Texas)

      • Ken-
        It’s like someone saying “you’re geting warmer” when they’ve hidden something. You don’t have it yet but the hinterview is drawing you closer. So you know its,a hint even though you haven’t found what been hidden yet. Catch my drift?

        • To clarify a bit—- I’m referring to the game where someone hides something—and as you look for it they say “You’re getting warmer” or “you’re cold…you’re so cold you’re freezing. Or. when you get very close they’ll shout “you’re hot!! You’re so hot you’re boiling!!!!!” lol. These are direct hints to help you get closer.

          You are being hinted at (either postively or negatively)—the only reason you know it is a hint is because it is definitely catching your attention.

          As GCG mentioned: Forrest says “I’ll pass on that one”. There has to be a reason he has brought up the question—and why he has used the answer—it is causing you to think. It COULD move you closer to realizing a clue.

          I’m not sure if that makes sense or not—-but there are several things Forrest has said or written that I am sure are hints—even though I have no idea how to put those hints to use.

      • Ken
        In my previous post I made it clear that the validity of a hint will only be known at the end but until then “hints” are simply things we find in Forrest’s body of works – I refer to them as “artifacts.”

        Things which stand out to an individual searcher and aids us in determining specific locations in the Rockies…

        With the idea being that as the clues become clearer to us — more and more things or hints (these artifacts) will begin to align. When they all line up and fall into place — Well then, that searcher is the finder…

    • **** GCG – “I never really keyed in on it before however let me quote Forrest:
      “there is no substitute for thinking and planning and observing and looking at maps . . . ” ” ****

      Don’t forget the other cutting edge of that two-sided blade:
      “ . . . unless it’s the desire to keep it simple.”


      • Jake,
        I left that part out intentionally since it would distract from my hint.

        However there are in my estimation 2 ways to view the other side of the blade, as you call it.

        The first is to paraphrase Forrest; if you don’t know where your going, then any starting point will do…

        That’s pretty simple – so then you are just going on an expensive vacation (perhaps another Forrest paraphrase).

        The other is the value of Trial & Error and BOTG which is also necessary.


        • Hi GCG.

          “The other is the value of Trial & Error and BOTG which is also necessary.”

          No truer words can be spoken on this.

          You hit the nail.

          Good luck!

  13. Blaze:

    In the fourth stanza “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,….” Why would one have to finish the last two stanzas if you have found the blaze? The 3 words, cold, brave and wood, I could simply use as a confirmation of sorts.

    Just asking 🙂

    • CharlieM; because most people don’t pay attention the first time you tell them something important.

    • CharlieM – There are two giant ears, visible from a Piper Malibu plane, in my specific search area. There is also a Double Omega 360 degree Rainbow Circumpunct nearby, easily from that vantage point or Google Earth in the creek. I believe he realized searchers needed the last two stanzas to to know where the hillside blaze was. And to know they needed to cross the creek, twice, and then head uphill, off-trail, through the trees:

      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.

    • Charlie – And the stanza before confirms where to begin, IMO:

      So why is it that I must go,
      To hide my trove for all to seek.

      Y is IT. For me, and my WWWH, that means the Y formed on the map, or seen from above, by the intersection of the Firehole, Gibbon and Madison Rivers at Madison Junction. My IT is the Madison River. And IT begins there.

    • CharlieM – When Forest originally wrote the Poem, when he thought he was going to die of cancer, I believe the Poem ended with the Fourth Stanza, and with this original line:

      Just take the chest and leave my bones.

      I believe he added the last two stanzas after he placed the bronze chest in its final hidey spot, and thought about the perspective of treasure Hunters looking for it.

    • CharlieM – I am thinking of that Beowulf poem, in the line that begins with So in it. Analysis has revealed that that is sort of a Listen command. But I think the last two stanzas are sort of a summary of Forrest’s entire Poem. An Alpha to Omega summary of the straight line to follow to the end of Forrest’s rainbow and the treasure. The Begin it to the Double Omega, in my case.

  14. The chest is unlocked. The key is inside. Focus on Gold and More. The word that is key to unlocking the poem is an item within the chest (imo.)

  15. Zap, this is from the previous keyword section. Hopefully is ok to post here again. I’ve been looking into the Row 4 Block 23 mentioned in the book and I just can’t see that as a hint. FF does not just ‘drop’ that there out of nowhere or made it up. Within the context of that paragraph it all checks out. When you google William Marvin Fenn, the website always comes up on the first page. It did almost 2 years ago when I first looked it up and it does today.

    That was the point that he wanted to convey there in ttotc, how can someone known and loved by so many people be only mentioned through history by where they are buried in a cemetery?

    The book was published in 2010, before that time I imagine that almost nothing else will be found about his father online. Nowadays a whole lot of links about Marvin come up on that first google page thanks to FF and the thrill of the chase. His dad passed the year before ff got cancer, if I’m not mistaken, before Forrest got the idea for the chase. It is hard to imagine that ff had anything to do with the choosing of that burial site and its number, or that he would afterwards use any combination of those numbers (somehow) as a hint or clue to his special place where the treasure is located on purpose. Regardless of when he found his special place (before or after 1988).

    The 23 does not seem like a coincidence on SB 49, but is it the number or the ‘math’ that got you the number that is important? I’m still thinking about that one. On the axe man image, I think it is difficult to confirm one way or the other. The mention of his fathers’ burial site #, I just don’t see it as a hint or confirmation of a hint.

    Other than the number repetition, what else from that story caught your attention???

    • OZ10 – Awesome post! Thank you!

      Cloves and Clous and Nails and the Pine Boxes, that were used in the olden days, for burials.

      And Forrest saying he would be pillowed down and scented in…

    • OZ10 —

      All the reasons you listed, is exactly why I never thought twice about it…I couldn’t imagine it untrue and I couldn’t imagine a fluke but numbers are funny this way – we commonly use numbers less than 50 all the time and coincidences are bound to happen.

      So even having numbers, precise interpretation is difficult!


      • GCG,
        I hear that. I have given up on precision, and would just settle for consistency at this point.

    • Hi Oz10:

      “I’ve been looking into the Row 4 Block 23 mentioned in the book and I just can’t see that as a hint. FF does not just ‘drop’ that there out of nowhere or made it up.”

      Oh, no — I knew it was a legitimate fact. First thing I did after I read that in the book was Google his father, which brings up the findagrave link.

      “That was the point that he wanted to convey there in ttotc, how can someone known and loved by so many people be only mentioned through history by where they are buried in a cemetery?”

      Yes — he was reflecting on the sadness of the sum and substance of his father’s life being reduced to the minutiae of a grave plot location.

      “His dad passed the year before ff got cancer, if I’m not mistaken, before Forrest got the idea for the chase.”

      Yes … and I can see where you’re trying to go with this…

      “It is hard to imagine that ff had anything to do with the choosing of that burial site and its number…”

      I’m sure Forrest had no control over those numbers.

      “… or that he would afterwards use any combination of those numbers (somehow) as a hint or clue to his special place where the treasure is located on purpose.”

      Why not? Forrest is just as capable of noticing coincidences as anyone else, so why not incorporate them into his puzzle if he feels like it? Especially if it pays a little homage to his father.

      “The 23 does not seem like a coincidence on SB 49, but is it the number or the ‘math’ that got you the number that is important?”

      There was no math in generating that number. It’s just a label. It was Forrest, not me, that put all the focus on cloves in SB 49. I just happened to notice that two out of the three cloves bottles appeared in position 23 in the spice drawer, that’s all. I had a blaze that I was using in an earlier solution that happened to be the only named feature in a PLSS section #23. And of course, it didn’t escape my notice that SB #23 is nothing but blazes on trees with no commentary at all from Forrest. And that on page 128 of TTOTC he mentioned having a “20% chance of living three years”.

      The Tony Bennett lyrics that Forrest reversed in SB 90 consist of 23 words. Tony Bennett is also mentioned in chapter 23 of TFTW, and Tony Bennett’s name (and the reversed lyrics) had a tie-in with the name of my blaze at that time. In TFTW page 162, he includes the useless detail that the article had 23 pages. On page 71 of the same book he mentions the “23rd fighter bomber squadron.” So it’s not an isolated occurrence, but then again we have a lot of material to draw on, so if you look long enough you’ll find patterns.

      I only mention it at all because while I had good reasons for originally thinking I had identified Forrest’s blaze, the location it indicated didn’t pan out, so I have no reservations about sharing its 23-connections. Today, I think at most it’s just a local feature that Forrest felt like drawing attention to, but is not being used as one of his 9 clues.

      • Zap, good reply. Just a couple of things:

        “Forrest is just as capable of noticing coincidences as anyone else, so why not incorporate them into his puzzle if he feels like it? Especially if it pays a little homage to his father.”

        I agree with all of that except the ‘pay a little homage to his father’ part. He has written many nice things about his father, and Skippy too, and included them in his books. That is a much better way to pay tribute, but this is only my opinion of what I -think- I know of him.

        “There was no math in generating that number.”

        I used -math- for count, formula, mental exercise. There is some of that involved since you have to include the back row in your count and also figure out that there are no half bottles or empty spaces back there. You know what I mean, I can’t explain it.

        • Not only is Forrest just as likely to notice coincidences – he is far more likely since he built a treasure based on clues and hints…

          Further, Forrest knows virtually everything there is to know about his special place so he can see connections on connections.

          So this furthers my belief that he has given hints to the interpretation of everything in the poem.

          If you lay the key nouns out systematically you could map various phrases and cues from the books and his question and answer sessions right next to the words and slowly work out where they all apply…

          For example:

          In tight focus with word that is key…

          Tight from the perspective of a poet is seen in the terms of its sounds and syllables so Tight is: tite
          Which is similar to Title or the line in the poem: I give you title to the gold.

          One way to break the poem down is the exact opposite to the way most people have gone about it using the Pronouns as the signalling words which occur in the lines which contain the clues.

          Being that there are seven ‘I’s’ and two ‘my’s’ — someone could make the case that Stanza’s 2-4 are the literal directions, whereas the clues occur in Stanzas 1, 5, and 6.

          This isn’t how I interpret it but I looked at it…what I found is these statements provide additional hints to confirm your location for Where Warm Waters Halt…

          For example, the history of your location for WWWH must be a place of past riches…


      • Again Zap…nice post that shares what some/most may have missed.
        The idea that all of those instances are coincidental…is not realistic. Perhaps…but not likely.
        Again…what to do with it?

      • Hi Oz10: thanks. As far as Forrest’s father goes, I’m of the opinion that he’s the other person that would have known where Forrest hid the treasure. So in a way, Forrest would already be paying homage to him. And if it turns out he did hide the treasure chest on Father’s Day in 2010, then that too would be a poignant gesture. There’s no way to know the motivation behind Forrest’s inclusion of meaningless details, so I simply note them on the off chance they end up having relevance.

        “I used -math- for count, formula, mental exercise. There is some of that involved since you have to include the back row in your count and also figure out that there are no half bottles or empty spaces back there. You know what I mean, I can’t explain it.”

        Well, with the spices I agree some counting is necessary (plus assumptions about the obscured lower half of the drawer). Likewise the backwards Tony Bennett lyrics. Is 23 an outlier? Maybe, maybe not. The lower the number, the more often it’s likely to occur in regular English. (There are a zillion twos and threes in Forrest’s books and SBs). Likewise, the more “round” a number, the more likely it would come up. The number 50 comes to mind on that score. 23 is kind of in that middle ground: not a round number, but not very high either.

        To make this post more word-that-is-key-relevant, one way in which a single word would qualify as being critical is if it was geographically explicit. So words like “Rocky” or “Wyoming” would be of little use, while I think you’d agree that “Shoshone” or “Kootenai” in conjunction with other information might be extremely helpful.

        • Zap, I am slow to catch up. The actual Tony Bennett lyrics also have 23 words in it. FF used the same amount, only reversed some of the words. Out of all the songs why he chose that one and why did he mixed it? I have been paying attention to the reversing for sure, but honestly never looked for numbers before.

          Word that is key? If I found something like Shoshone or Kootenai in the poem I will be calling that a clue imo.

          • Zap, that sounds great. If it is that specific why not just call it a clue? it did get you closer to the chest. Or does that word by itself does not mean much until you apply it to WWWH?

          • Hi Oz10: until Loco found the New Zealand radio quote, I actually ~was~ considering it a clue for that reason: that it got me closer. But like Shoshone, it wouldn’t pinpoint a spot on the map. It is only when used in conjunction with warm waters halting that it identifies a precise point. So it’s a pretty good system: two unactionably large geographic entities that when combined collapse to a single point.

        • Oz10: now you know why my WWWH has been locked in for over a year. My “word that is key” is just as distinctive as Shoshone or Kootenai.

          • Zap… All of what you say makes “some” sense in a generic way. When I say this, I am implying that the so-called EEggs are not really part of the original set of “blue prints” that Fenn set out to disclose.
            Have you actually used the poem to find your “place”, backed by maybe something from the book?, And then…apply without prejudice the Eggs to confirm?
            I am kind of seeing/feeling that you have gone too far before completing/nailing the wwh equation.
            Also…are you at least cognizant of the fact that you may be way off the mark totally in regards to wwh?
            Please know that I am not shooting arrows at you…I just suspect you may have missed some things along the way.

          • Hi ken,

            “I am implying that the so-called EEggs are not really part of the original set of “blue prints” that Fenn set out to disclose.”

            Completely agree with you.

            “Have you actually used the poem to find your “place”, backed by maybe something from the book?, And then…apply without prejudice the Eggs to confirm?”

            That’s exactly my process, though most of the emphasis is from the poem alone. And actually, the Eggs came much later. At heart, I’m a poem purist, and originally I didn’t think the books would provide much assistance.

            “I am kind of seeing/feeling that you have gone too far before completing/nailing the wwh equation.”

            No, I’m sure I’ve got WWWH nailed down, and I needed nothing but the poem for that.

            “Also…are you at least cognizant of the fact that you may be way off the mark totally in regards to wwh? Please know that I am not shooting arrows at you…I just suspect you may have missed some things along the way.”

            Believe me, I get the skepticism. But short of telling you what it is, I recognize the impossibility of convincing anyone that it’s correct. But I have no misgivings about it.

            What surprises me most about this Chase are the searchers who have been to all four states on dozens of trips. How could anyone claim with a straight face that they had “nailed down” the first clue when they can so casually discard one WWWH and hopscotch to another a thousand miles away?

          • Zap –

            I just want to say that based on all prior evidence from this blog or any other, revealing your WWH wouldn’t change anyone’s mind.

            It’s just how people are. They like there own ideas better than mine or yours.

            If course people that were in your search area would take a look so I know you can’t reveal WWH.

            Rather I have been asking you about hints and Easter eggs and how those work. Maybe there are a few out of the hundreds that you wouldn’t mind sharing. Something that would make me see what you see in terms of how a hint relates to a clue or location.

            I have asked others and gotten some response and I don’t really think they hold water. I’m pretty sure you agree.

            So I’m hoping you can share something specific, show how the hint works.


          • Confidence will be the standard to beat Zap…but I still suspect you are not even close in a geographical sense. I believe you have some really good basics developed…but not to the extent of actually pinpointing the correct area. That may be my own prejudices speaking here…and we can certainly agree to keep the lines open for further topics. We all see what see…

          • Well, ken, I should hope I’m well past the “basics” after 3000+ hours, otherwise most searchers with far fewer hours invested are hopelessly spinning their wheels. 😉 In any case, good luck to you, and to borrow a reference from yesterday, I’ll keep the frequency open, ken(neth). 🙂

          • don’t lose ya faith Zap, everybody hurts the man on the moon at some stage along the way – you may think it’s the end of the world, but it’s just an imitation of life and the great beyond

            c’mon guys.. think “Shiny Happy” here people

          • It’s all good amigo… let’s not be derelict and forget that
            That’s just a non mathematical approach that may give you some pause down the line.
            Wanna meet over at SB185 sometime and see what kind of EEggs may be lurking there?
            Don’t count the hours spent…

          • The most obvious egg in SB185 is the J.H. Sharp painting on the wall behind Forrest. The Sherlock Holmes detective hat is a nice touch. 😉

          • Zap ~”…I should hope I’m well past the “basics” after 3000+ hours, otherwise most searchers with far fewer hours invested are hopelessly spinning their wheels…”

            I find that funny, Zap. Is that what fenn meant when he said; “I’m not flippant about this. It’s not something somebody is going to be able to do on spring break or a Sunday afternoon picnic. I’m looking a hundred years down the road, maybe a thousand years down the road. People don’t understand that.”

            So I’m just wondering… is it your opinion that there’s a must need for thousands of hours of research [ computer, botg or anything else ] Or do you think fenn might have meant something else by this above comment?

          • Hi Seeker: as demonstrated by 7 years of failure by collectively tens of thousands of people, I’d say it’s pretty clear that the puzzle is hard enough to solve that no one who has put in only a month or two is going to crack that nut. It’s going to take a rare combination of imagination, intelligence and perseverance.

            What’s remarkable is that multiple searchers got within 200 feet of the chest so long ago, and yet apparently no further progress (at least as measured by distance) has been made since then. Of course, if someone ~has~ gotten closer than that, there’s no obligation on Forrest’s part to report it. (And no, for the record, I don’t think I’ve gotten closer than 200 feet.)

          • Hi Zap. I agree.

            Shoot it took me four years alone to even get to a specific target area….and that all began with luck. This past summer, I was able to narrow it down further.

            Yep…no one will be able to crack it without putting in the effort.

            I started in March 2013. If calculated with spending only 4 hours a day X 7 days X 52 weeks X 5 years (will be in 3/2018)… comes up to be about 7200+ hours of research, investigation, and travel time.

            You’ll have to be completely psychic if you can do it in a month…..LOL.

            Good luck!

          • Zap,
            Ya jumping the gun…
            How many books where sold in 2010 – 11 or 12. The major news media didn’t really pick up on the story that early… Those first searcher somehow got the first clues correct and the location. They didn’t seem to have the need of all the SBs, Q&As Interviews, and blogs or ‘the basic 3000 hours’ of research… { that’s 125 days of constant nose to the grindstone research – 250 day @ 12 hour a day – or more than a year of researching @ 6 hours, each and every day….}
            What we do know is… even as we speak, it seems… that other searchers are getting clues correct and they still don’t know it as well.

            The question was…. do you think we need all this research everyone is talking about -?- to solve the poem?
            Could fenn have meant something else by the comment? And not so much, it would take 100 years of researching everything under the sun to figure this out.
            LOL with only one indication that; as the years roll on why it will be harder to attempt… the RM’s are still moving and will surely have an impact of the clues.

          • Zap…I forgot to acknowledge that I actually understood your “ken(neth)”
            quite clearly the first time you wrote it. Clever …but not even close.
            Hey the Hobbit! Where’s the party?

  16. Sorry Kenn, but I just came up for air after being in the rabbit hole for many hours to discover a new Key Word page. Playing serious blog ketchup again.

    If someone else hasn’t already answered your question, it was a Piper Malibu Mirage with a 350 HP engine.


  17. Lisa,

    Regarding your question about Tudor and Skippy’s plane, I was trying to get folks to think about 2s, as in pairs, and possibly pairs of places fitting each clue.


    • pinatubocharlie – Thank you for your response from our conversation on the other Key Word thread. You mentioned pairs, so now I am thinking about the fact that Lillie Gay Simpson Fenn was a twin

      Anna on Mike’s blog pointed out that Willie could be a combo name of William and Lillie to honor Forres’s parents. That was awesome, Anna;

      Kinda like Brangelina….

      Hey, where is Bart the Bear II?

  18. The word that is key – It’s the Secret Woid

    It’s like the secret word on Groucho Marx, you bet your life! Once you find it, the bird drops down and you get the $50 bonus prize. Or, the Million Dollar prize. Just say the SECRET WORD and apply it to the Chase!

    “I must confess, I was born at a very early age” (Groucho Marx)
    “Outside of a dog, a book is man’s best friend. Inside of a dog it’s too dark to read” (Groucho Marx)

    Seriously, there is a word that is key. I’m Ecstatic !!

  19. “paddle” There’s no other reference of any kind to it in any way, yet there it is right out in the open for the world to see, shining and bare, the world “paddle”.

  20. Aaron,

    I’m answering the question in your post yesterday having to do with my comment about virtual searching.

    I understand what you are saying and agree that BOTG are a must, BUT how can I proceed with confidence unless I’ve planned my mission down to the 2nd to last detail? The last detail of corse being to put my hands on the chest and head for the nearest bank vault.

    After all, he has told us time and time again that we only need the poem, TTOTC, and GE or a good map to solve it. He’s said that. So why can’t I solve it virtually from home?

    If the only way to solve it is to have BOTG then the folks who live in the RMs have a serious advantage over those of us who must travel hundreds, if not thousands of miles and pay a lot of money in the process. And please remember, his original intent, and I’m paraphrasing here, is to give everyone an equal chance at finding it. EVERYONE. Young, old, rich, poor, healthy, or disabled. How is the Chase fair to the old poor redneck with a bad leg if he has to actually go out into nature to search?

    Don’t get me wrong, I love the outdoors. I also love the adventure of the all too many to count rabbit holes I’ve jumped head first into. What I’ve seen, what I’ve learned, the experience, the coincidences, the knowledge, and the enlightenment. That’s rewarding too.

    And I have Forrest Fenn to thank for all of that. Thank you Forrest!!!

    So I may be wrong, but that’s my approach. Going cross wind, turning final soon and hope to see the ball soon. Sorry, that’s a Navy term that I don’t believe the AF uses, though I’d bet a lot that Forrest knows what it means.


    • PTC,

      Unfortunately proximity and access to the Rocky Mountains is an advantage however given what appears to be the difficulty of interpreting the poem – not much of one…

      Forrest has explicitly stated; “in theory” a person might be able to determine all the clues from the armchair however he finds it highly unlikely…


    • Pcharlie…all pilots know what the ball is. Sounds like you spent some time on a carrier.
      I agree that it is quite possible to “plan and observe” right “up to one detail short of the final bier”.. That requires having to actually get out there and execute.
      Good luck to you and glad you are having some fun!

      • ken,

        At least there’s one person out there that acknowledges it’s possible. Thank you. But for those who discount the thought, please explain where your confidence is derived.

        If wrong, then I may simply drop out of Forrest’s school and focus instead on my physical health.

        As to “the ball”, even though I have been on a carrier a few times, once as an civilian observer, and the other time when my family was evacuated from the Philippines because of the Mt. Pinatubo eruption, I actually learned about the ball while working on my very first design project after graduating from college. The project was at El Toro MCAS involving the main runway, which included a ball for carrier landing training purposes.


        • Ah yes…Old El Toro. Been there a bazillion times…old aviation days. In another life…I was part of a team that re-qualified carriers for sea duty, post dry dock for refitting.
          The “meatball” …yup…them’s the days.
          I base my belief that a searcher can plan everything before on Fenn’s own assertions that it is possible “in theory”. Just because he says “in theory”…doesn’t mean that it is not possible. Of course there are a lot of folks that believe Fenn just wants folks endlessly trekking around BOTG in hopes of stumbling upon the stash based on a clue or two…or maybe more; But I sincerely believe that the correct solve(short of the retrieval) is just what he designed.
          “….,but before you go, look at the poem as if it were a map, because it is, and like any other map, it will show you where to go if you follow it’s directions.”
          How many maps can you think of that don’t show you where you’re going…if you know where it is you are going? NONE!
          Keep the faith Pcharlie
          Grande Beach holds many memories

          • IMO – If the person who is going to find Indulgence will set out to do so with confidence and a smile, then I would agree that it is possible to plan your entire trip from home based upon your solve of the 9 clues before ever going BOTG.

          • Thanks ken….you also speak of directions within the poem.

            Now you better understand why I think the commas and other punctuation are related to that very thought.

            In his best “Ragu Spahetti sauce commercial Italian voice”….

            IT’sssss…a-inn there!!


            Good luck!

          • Grande Island. Yeah we had good times there too. I did a lot of scuba diving and snorkeling there and over near NAVMAG just around the point from the west end of Cubi. Did a lot of sailing in the bay too and had the pleasure of being in “close proximaty” to the Mighty Mo when she came in for her last visit. That was a real treat!

            When we’re you there? I was there 74-76 and 86-91. The wife has been back a few times for a vacation but I have not.


  21. When you see SB32 Kenn someone is trolling Dal.
    There is a whole thread on Another blog where people think Dal is lying about the missing scrapbook.

    It’s really gross. I wint participate over there anymore

    But that’s me

    • Lugnutz – I fought that battle on the SB32 thread at Mike’s against Not Forrest Fenn and various other newbies who wanted to believe that was ff. I posted evidence of Dal’s reason for not assigning #32 to that “missing” scrapbook, and adamantly insisted his reasons were heartfelt and true. I think I won, and I believe the coast is clear now. I personally would love to have you posting with us at Mike’s again. We always have so much fun.

      • Lisa

        Thanks for saying so.

        Mike is great and I miss Jake.
        There is a problem and it comes up every time anyone says Chest over there.

        I can’t handle it. It’s literally the most ill-conceived idea in the history of those chase. Drives me nuts.

        Not that it’s a long drive

        • Lugnutz – Now we are all pretending to be Pirates at Mike’s. I am Sadie the Goat, who flew the Jolly Roger, and who was famous for making her victims walk the plank on the Hudson River. She was the Captain and leader of the NY-based Charlton Gang.

          But I like that we’re on the Fenn Treasure Express train over here with GCG.


          Be the Character…

          Be the Chest…

          Be Forrest Fenn…

  22. Lugnutz, I was just wondering about Trolls, since you mentioned that Dals facing some too, I too have someone who has posted a few obscene and unkind comments about my latest youtube creations, one is a Frank Rizzo, not his real name I am sure but I digress, my purpose is not to lament what I have created in any way, but reading through that pitiful criticism any response to that, one who won’t use his real name is like trying to recognize a terrorist who hides behind a mask, It’s just simply not worth any more of my time, bang they are dead to me, glad I got that off my chest.

    Now this is troubling me it may seem silly but why?

    As I have gone alone in there? ff said it is near a mountain top, why not say up there? Why alone now?

    When I first said that Forrest Father would know where he hid the TC I was criticized, but today most agree it was correct. He was probably at the special place with his 80 year old father, as Zap said stated earlier in this thread and I knew this fact back in 2013.

    If Forrest was born in 1930 and his father was born in 1903 that would mean in 1983 ff already knew that special place, just read page 119, pg 144 do the math, then truly “feel” Forrest’s emotions, that is how I knew that his father would always be included in his special place, in that heart of the mountains Forrest had found and later decided to stash his treasure there. So this Father on the Banco episode/chapter took place before both his fathers and ff’s diagnosis of cancer, and furthermore it was in Santa Fe, NM.

    Out on a limb…IMO: That was when he took his father to “The secret where”. He still could have flown at that time, but seems he may have driven a sedan to that special place, just think about Skippy who tragically drowned in 90′ of water and Olga’s ashes flown 45 up and 45 back, why is pg 51 showing a pic of Skippy and father Marvin, why was the 141 circled and not the 1413? If I do the math again, 141 minus page 51 = 90 how far is the border of Colorado? 90 what happens at 32 degrees? Feels a little wet and warm in here, borders on discomfort. What goes in and out of the border 11 times and looks like it rides on a rainbow?

    I plan on a Winter Thoughts II just like WW1


    • Hi Tom –

      I don’t do any math at all myself. To me, it seems like you never explain your math, you are asking readers to do it. Maybe you think your explaining. Ease allow me to ask some questions.

      First I will say that I don’t think Fenn had anything to with determining ehat appeaars on which page. You can think what you will.

      What is 90 miles from what? Please be specific. Which meaningful location in SF is 90 miles from which meaningful location CO.

      32 degrees. That’s the answer to when does water freeze. What does that have to do with anything? The NM CO border is at 37 degrees.

      Why does it matter that you cross the border 11 times? What is the significance of 11?

      I have a solve at Toltec because 2 of the only remaining active water halts are on that line.


    • Following, deciphering these posts is as difficult as the TTOTC poem…

      TT, where does the 1983 come from? A prior post? TTOTC? Postmarks? Thanks, OS2

    • Using 32 degrees for water freezing is foolish. I can still have liquid water at -45 degrees F if I felt so entitled. Ice can form from water at room temperature, if needed. You’re choosing and picking little coincidences that seem to go nowhere.
      A lot of people have the notion it’s about his father, stemming from 2011, some don’t. Maybe the math is more geared at “right straight” then anything else, given the Earth is round and he may want us to figure something out on the ground. Maybe not, just don’t see where you are going. Maybe the 85% is 85 degrees of a right triangle. He talks a lot about nickels, a 5 degree, 85 degree, 90 degree right triangle may fit that scenario. How tall would something need to be to create an 80′ shadow? Is it from 85 degrees or 5 degrees? There is math all over the place, possibly, some think hwy 1 veterans memorial may have to do with wwwh, maybe 90 is a hwy?
      As I have gone alone in there? ff said it is near a mountain top, why not say up there? Why alone now? Really, that is what troubles you? lol, and I’m thinking that you can’t solve all the clues with the poem, lol, I need to rethink what’s important.
      Are we suppose to believe something because you and zap may have mentioned it before? Come on Tom, you know if you are onto something you have to bring more than what you’ve brought for the community to comment on. It’s like saying “I know where the chest is”, okay, wonderful, don’t believe it though. You’ve had a lot better posts than this one Tom, don’t start going backwards now…

      • One correction, Charlie. Forrest did not say the chest is near a mountain top. That’s an “interpretation” of what he said. What he wrote was “The treasure is not on top of a mountain……but may be close to the top. f”

        “May be” leaves some uncertainty; and “the top” at the end of the sentence isn’t necessarily a restatement of “top of a mountain” — it could be a different top. (Remember Forrest’s Spanish Toy Factory.) Given how Forrest plays with words, one should always be mindful of alternatives.

      • Charlie

        You are hitting on something important here.

        Sometimes the chasers need a Fenn to be an infallible expert, architect and engineer. Sometimes he’s just a regular guy that doesn’t know when water freezes.

        Sometimes he can right a poem with coded messages that form sentences that rhymes. Ann’s then sometimes he doesn’t know which type of hat is associated with Sherlock Holmes.

        It’s a lot of fenagaling to make “x” fit “y” in my opinion.


        • So true Lug. We find instances that we believe or see that he actually did think of everything, but fail to remember that he struggled in school, did not go to college, and is just a regular ol’ guy. Sometimes, he messes up, sometimes he misspeaks, sometimes he spells words wrong by accident and on purpose. He may have written this poem with one solve in mind, but for us as searchers, lol, we have to try to look at every plausible way if we are to figure it out. I don’t think wwwh is at 48 degrees, because water starts to crystalize at -48 degrees C, in fact, don’t think wwwh has anything to do with temp. doesn’t mean I didn’t look into it.
          Lug, even though it sounds like you are kidding a little, you couldn’t be more right. This guy is not a genius, he does make mistakes, and he’s in his 80’s, but then again, he’s sneaky, sly, and smart enough. Always that “plausible deniability” in everything chase related.
          When I critique my solve, I ask myself if I’m really that smart to come up with what I have or is there no way I could come up with any of my solve by chance. If it is all coincidences, not pertaining really to the chase and wrong, or, it seems right because I know I’m just not that smart to come up with what I got. I then look at Forrest, and well, he’s just average. I guess it’s not who you are, it’s who they think you are. Actually, “Y” stands at “X”. lol.:)

          One correction, Charlie. Forrest did not say the chest is near a mountain top. That’s an “interpretation” of what he said. What he wrote was “The treasure is not on top of a mountain……but may be close to the top. f”
          yes Zap, that’s why I was saying ‘really” to Tom. Basically, a lot of places in the Rockies could be considered mtns. whether it’s the base or the summit, that fall between 5,000-10,200 feet. I always took his comment to be in the forest. Where the trees end, ahhhh, I don’t think he would go any farther, that’s just IMO. Not to many trees on summits. You are right though Zap, must be mindful of the alternatives.

  23. Has anyone had problems getting subscribes on here I don’t know how to fiix it I subscribe to all the new post and I get no email updates uggggg

  24. C’mon you all, and hear me good. The chest is in Colorado of course. Easy to fly to Colorado and land on a remote road, run down to the hidey 2 times, and then take off for home. Southern Colorado is the only answer.

    West Yellowstone is featured too much for it to be there. After all, that Piper Mirage looks a lot like a Mooney Exec. Lots of those here in Colorado. No one would ever even notice back then.

    The key word is “RED”. Colorado (color red). Simple and easy. I mean, did he ever even mention Colorado in his many stories?

  25. Kenn what are you doing? We want to encourage Sandy and hear more about these exploits. I mean, wow! Like a wild west version of gstsby!

    • Old Cessnas et al from the 50s can be run on regular gas with Marvel Mystery Oil added. Much less expensive than AV gas. Marvel is my key word.

      • I’ve heard of Marvel Mystery Oil, can’t remember exactly what it is. I know it comes in a red labeled bottle or maybe the oil it’self is red.

        • Interesting enough that this has been mentioned….I have some of that oil in my garage.

          And I also like the connections people have made to link it to the hunt.

          I wonder if the blaze uses “Marvel Oil” as it’s “marking” substance… “tarry” is related to that “marvel gaze”?

          Oil doesn’t have the same viscosity of tar, but if mixed with something….it could very well have those properties.

          Another rabbit hole?…..we’ll have to see.

          Cheers and good thinking.

          • The only problem with Tar as some kind of marker (from my experience) is that in the mountains lichen and fungi will grow on it and in not to long can completely obscure the tar.

            And so to stay on topic in this thread, I don’t believe “Tarry” is the key word…especially if interpreted to mean Tar (bitumen) since I believe Forrest would have already worked this out.


          • How about tarry scant in terms of something like what the head of a common nail (no galvanizing) does to a piece wood (fencing) -and exposed to the elements. You all have seen this I’m sure, you know, the dark, almost black streaks that kind of looks like dark tears going down the wood.

            So perhaps tarry scant is something like that only on a larger scale?


          • GCG

            When Fenn reads the poem aloud he says Tarry.
            Rhymes with berry.
            And fairy.
            Not sorry
            Just an fyi if you haven’t heard him.


          • I think the greater mystery is why anyone thinks “tarry” has anything to do with tar. How many times has Forrest recited the poem in public? Doesn’t pronunciation matter? If he meant tar-covered, don’t you think he’d have pronounced it that way? After all, hasn’t he said he has no desire to mislead or deceive? Besides, the sentence makes no sense if tarry is an adjective instead of a verb because it would leave the clause verb-less.

          • Lug;

            As Sherlock Holms would say – Elementary my dear Watson, elementary.

            If the real meaning of tarry scant, as Forrest intended, is TARry Scant then
            to pronounce it as TARry scant gives it away. By Forrest pronouncing it as Terry scant, it leaves two options open, where-as pronouncing it as TARry scant leaves only one option on the table – JMO – JDA

        • Kenn,

          MMO is a fuel additive I use every time I fill up my car or truck. It’s main purpose is to keep the entire fuel system clean to aide the engine in running at peak efficiency. 4 oz/10 gallons. Walmart and most stores that sell automotive products carries it. And the liquid is reddish in color. Hum.


  26. If one were to use statistics to determine in whether a key word is used or not….I would first gauge the following – if I were FF.

    1. I would want someone to find the chest.
    2. I would give out a specific amount of clues to get people interested.
    3. I would provide a map for everyone.
    4. I would include a single word within the poem, placed in a very inconspicuous place, and realize that the finder will have had to used this key word to win.
    5. I would make it so the key word flows through its use without anyone ever suspecting that the word is key.

    – FF stated one word is key
    – FF stated not to discount the words in the poem, especially the nouns.

    For me, that is the GM telling me how to play the game. Precise instructions.

    Precise instructions that has now limited my search within the poem.

    I have removed any verb, adjective, conjuction, preposition, etc, and it left me with a group of words….only the nouns. But don’t forget to keep those words that have multiple characteristics – can be a noun, verb, adjective, etc. I would not discard those either.

    FF said there is a key word…the “nouns” is where I would start.

    Good luck.

    • Did f actually say “one word is key?”

      He said “…a few are in tight focus with a word that is key.” That word might be in the poem more than once.

      • Hi leigh.

        He said “…a few are in tight focus with a word that is key.”
        – a word that is key….sounds to me one word.
        – tight focus with that word too
        – I’m not seeing anything plural in the statement except “the few” [people] who are in tight focus. Can you please define your conclusion.

        You commented…
        That word might be in the poem more than once.
        – I agree with your thinkning, but I have decided upon a word that is not repeated.

        Why? Because I know, if I wanted to keep something hidden, I sure wouldn’t keep repeating the subject/topic/”word”….just because I know it would / it WILL draw attention to it. Thus, I would place it I’m a spot that looks normal and not draw any attention to it, except for the use that I’ve established (“don’t mess with my poem”).

        There are many words in the poem that are just rabbit holes to me….a word that repeats itself is one of those holes.

        Sorry. We’ll have to disagree.

        I think you need to dig deeper into your imagination.

        Good luck.

        • Tim –

          “…in tight focus with a word that is key.”

          Focus on that ‘a’ word in that sentence. Or is that a letter, like the X that isn’t in the Poem or put on the map by ff. I know ‘a’ is considered to be a grammatical article, modifying ‘word’, specifying how many. But could it be a modifying adjective instead? That ‘a’ word does NOT appear on the Poem at all! Just like the X does not.

          Just musing about this, but maybe I am on to something….

          • Hi Lisa.

            I do see the cleverness in what your are saying, but I just don’t get that feeling as you have, because FF also said to pay attention to the “nouns”.

            IMO – *in his best hillbilly accent*….and I passed College English 102, so I’m “smart”…..LOL…..

            …I just don’t see FF putting that much more of a complex scenario into the poem. Granted it is supposed to be difficult, but as with all writings, there are certain English words that are required to be used in order to form a sentence properly – grammatically correct or not.

            That tends to be a point that you are not taking into consideration when applying all the other details of “a” “word”.

            Of course, “a word” could refer to outside the poem or in some other way, I’m just not seeing it this way.

            Good luck.

          • Hi Lisa, I have considered it may be X but it seems odd that he would use “word” that is key in reference to X when he could have chosen a more correct way to state it. FF thinks about words a little different than most so who knows?

        • Whether the word is in the poem once or in the poem a dozen times; does it change the meaning of the word?

          • Hi Kenn.

            To answer your question….
            “Whether the word is in the poem once or in the poem a dozen times; does it change the meaning of the word?”

            ….IMO – there are some words in the poem that can have multiple meanings. Some can be obvious, as they have only one meaning, but sttill others, coul/do have multiple meanings. Example is “down”. This is a noun, adjective, or verb. But it could also be a direction, with multiple meanings in itself….below, lower in elevation, south, under, etc.

            I get the feeling I am describing an architect’s building for the architect……being that I am on the 20th floor of 50…..but people are still trying to get to the elevator.

            You appear to not be LISTENING to the Game Master well enough…..nor are you deconstructing the poem yourself, by what the GM had stated in so many words.

            FF…..”I’m gonna tell you how.”

            Be the chest…..and listen to FF, but then again, I think FF wants someone to find it while he is alive… he too can have another thrilling adventure of his own.

            Cheers and good luck.

        • Tim: given that there are only 166 words in the poem, whether the word is repeated or not, I’d say it would be pretty blatant to have a “word that is key” actually be one of those words.

          • “end” or Omega

            Omega Alt Code = 234 Ω Omega

            2nd, 3rd, and 4th stanzas are you need to decipher the poem.

          • I agree Zap…..because like Pina stated…IMO there is a Master Key.

            FF said he left the key in the chest to the chest,

            One word unlocks the poem.

            Coincidence. I think not.

            Good luck to you.

          • Hi Lisa.

            Just because I have a word, it doesn’t mean it is right.

            The GM said the finder will know only when they solve the poem.

            I won’t reveal any words.

            Besides, that will just muddle the pot more, and others will get all “Bill Barty” on me. Uh-uh…ain’t gonna do it.


            Good luck.

          • :o)
            Don’t mind me…my lobotomy is the reason I act this way.

            I think it turned me evil…..


            …or not….*winks*….


          • Zap & Tim,

            Forrest is only referencing the poem.

            You can’t be in “tight focus” with a word that isn’t even there.

            And the word that is key doesn’t unlock the whole poem only then next and most important clues to finding the treasure.

            Remember, a searcher that successfully solves only the first few clues could find the treasure and if I told you where home of Brown is then I might as well take you to the treasure.

            The word that is key gets you through the Second Stanza because if you don’t have where “warm waters halt” then you don’t have anything.

            If you do have where warm waters halt then your half way there metaphorically speaking.

            Also the poem is NOT a Cipher. If there was a “Keyword” then the poem becomes a cipher.

            When you listen to the Game Master, it’s much like a full understanding of Biblical text – one most consult the whole word of God…

            Many religions were created because each focuses on the parts they like or can use or where they think, they have special knowledge.

            Also there seems to be misconceptions of what qualifies as a cipher – one thing is for sure – just because a word in the poem or a phrase could be interpreted as a number doesn’t make it a cipher.

            A cipher is an algorithm for performing encryption which is applied to a complete work to decode; the simplest of which is a single word or number and then it just gets way more complicated from there.

            The word that is key – is in the poem and its correct interpretation is critical to the first few clues and for the confirmation of the clues. This conformation is what provides the searcher with confidence …

            And just as a side note a synonym for Confidence is Secret and vise versa but Secret isn’t the word which unlocks the confidence.

            Finally the structure of the poem is straight forward and not overly complicated (and it doesn’t need to be – remember “difficult but not impossible”):

            Proclamation, Puzzzle, Purpose, Promise.

            You could say it other ways but the alliteration is poetic.


          • GCG

            I agree with much of what you have said, and even….. when I apply this logic to my general solve, although I already have applied most of what you wrote…..I still find that my key word is accurate enough for my solve.

            “Forrest is only referencing the poem.”
            – so am I.

            “You can’t be in “tight focus” with a word that isn’t even there.”
            – my word is present in the poem. No mashups, no algorythms, and it will unlock my region, the target area, and also confirms the path I need to take to get to the target, from my WWWH.

            “And the word that is key doesn’t unlock the whole poem only then next and most important clues to finding the treasure.”
            – believe as you choose – I disagree with you.

            “Remember, a searcher that successfully solves only the first few clues could find the treasure and if I told you where home of Brown is then I might as well take you to the treasure.”
            – in some ways this is a true statement, but in some others, it is false….IMO.
            – even if told where the hoB is, you would still need to know where WWWH is also – that makes the statement false, because you would still require the use of the map and follow the GM & map’s instructions to retrieve the chest… could be done with time, so that would make it true as well, because time is then a helpful comrade in the solve, because it allows for elimination to occur.

            “The word that is key gets you through the Second Stanza because if you don’t have where “warm waters halt” then you don’t have anything.”
            – IMO – this is untrue, because the “word that is key” leads you to the target search area…skipping the search region.

            “If you do have where warm waters halt then your half way there metaphorically speaking.”
            – okay…I agree. Because your key word, if falls within the same region, could validate both.

            “Also the poem is NOT a Cipher. If there was a “Keyword” then the poem becomes a cipher.”
            – I never said it was a cipher…the word is a “key”….a cipher disects a mystery and then once deciphered, it is then used in helping solve the end game. After that it then becomes a key to open something….I’m just trying to reference the cylinder cipher in the “DaVinci’s Code” fiction. It seemed it needed to be solved PRIOR to reyrieving what was inside. I don’t see a cipher I see a riddle. Solve the riddle, know the location, find the treasure. Simple enough, huh?

            “When you listen to the Game Master, it’s much like a full understanding of Biblical text – one most consult the whole word of God…”
            – with you trying to conflate other men’s word with yet another man’s word shows me you don’t know how to play the Game. Your “god” is not involved with anything. I will say this much, I’m not limited in my UNDERSTANDING OF MANY RELIGIONS. The “word of Men” you refer to….is nothing from a god. BTW – your “god” never had given out clues and/or hints to help understand the Bible, so that alone shows me you are in another rabbit hole trying to find the way out.

            “Many religions were created because each focuses on the parts they like or can use or where they think, they have special knowledge.”
            – men creating a belief that they want/wanted other men to believe. Sounds like you got swayed.
            – Are you saying FF is a creator of a new universe, like I posted yesterday…a god?

            “Also there seems to be misconceptions of what qualifies as a cipher – one thing is for sure – just because a word in the poem or a phrase could be interpreted as a number doesn’t make it a cipher.”
            – the key word is not a cipher.

            “A cipher is an algorithm for performing encryption which is applied to a complete work to decode; the simplest of which is a single word or number and then it just gets way more complicated from there.”
            – you answered the question yourself

            “The word that is key – is in the poem and its correct interpretation is critical to the first few clues and for the confirmation of the clues. This conformation is what provides the searcher with confidence …”
            – isn’t that what I already stated?

            “And just as a side note a synonym for Confidence is Secret and vise versa but Secret isn’t the word which unlocks the confidence.”
            – yes

            “Finally the structure of the poem is straight forward and not overly complicated (and it doesn’t need to be – remember “difficult but not impossible”):”
            – never said it wasn’t. You seem to have started outside my camp, but now you are sitting next to the fire at my camp.

            “Proclamation, Puzzzle, Purpose, Promise.”
            – listen, learn, observe, find.

            “You could say it other ways but the alliteration is poetic.”
            – don’t complicate it too much….

            Good luck to you. Be safe out there.


          • Tim,

            I shouldn’t have put the biblical part in there – it just muddled what I was working to say.

            Also I wasn’t meaning to make any connections between Forrest and God and I really wasn’t bringing religion into the discussion — it was a poor choice of analogy.

            My statements did mix in some other thoughts presented through-out this thread (not specifically yours) .

            After reading your thorough breakdown though
            I believe we agree on virtually all the points.

            Especially if I’m getting what you are saying regarding search region and area, unlocked
            by the word which is key…


          • Thanks GCG for clarifying.

            Yeah…I did get the gist of your thoughts….just wanted to be clear and move away some of the cobwebs.


            Good luck out there.

          • GCG: we’ll have to agree to disagree. I believe there is a hidden word in the poem, and it is critical for winnowing down WWWH to a singular point on the map. And so as to leave little doubt in the searcher’s mind, that word is hidden in the poem more than once. The word, IMO, doesn’t “unlock the whole poem” as some naysayers like to poo-poo; it simply tells me where to start. The clues do the rest.

          • Zap,

            From your previous comments I know that your word that is key – is as distinctive as kootenai or Shoshone.

            And I understand the logic. Not being a big fan of the phrase; “agree to disagree” – I will review the poem again tomorrow night throughly and get back with you…

            Thanks for the response to a relative newbie
            4 hours a day for the last 100
            3 times BOTG

            Working hard to stay fresh…


          • GCG –

            I will be interested in your ongoing assessment as to the supposition of key word potential.

            Currently I do not believe there is a key word as I have seen no evidence to support such an idea.


          • GCG — sorry for that overused expression (I hate it, too). The only one worse is “At the end of the day…”

            Nothin’ wrong with being a newbie — we were all there. And you’re well ahead of most if you’ve already had 3 BOTG trips in your first season. That’s commitment.

          • Alsetenash quote:

            “Seeker. For all intents and purposes; I actually don’t have ,nor work off of, a word that is key. I can think of a few words daily and have them make sense. But at the end of the day, no word has such a power to elucidate the poem and clues. iMO.”

            TSK TSK. 🙂 🙂

        • tim,
          “i think you need to dig deeper into your imagination.”

          That doesn’t even make sense if you’ve known where i’ve been from the arm chair solves and BOTG… in the past 5 years. many rabbit holes. many thoughts, many theories, many ideas, drawings, research.

          I do not feel obliged justify anything to you.

          We can completely disagree, agreeably- the only difference is that I don’t judge you, stranger. or think i know more than you. best of luck. – milwaukee.

          • OK,
            This seems like a good place to bring this up. Since the whole gang is present (sans Jeremy).

            When it comes to understanding or interpreting Forrest’s answers to questions regarding specific phrases or words in the poem – how does he truthfully deal with the double entendre in his poem…

            He has provided hints to his own difficulty with this saying; I will be accused of prevaricating or quibbling…

            I don’t know how many of you, have ever played the 21 Questions Game but its a favorite of mine.

            In the game you can ask only Yes or No questions in an attempt to solve a Case or a Scenario.

            The classic Caper is the Death of Sally and Jimmy.
            At the crime scene Sally and Jimmy have been found dead inside a fully locked up house, with no sign of forced entry but there is broken glass, water everywhere, and the only witness is the house cat. What happen?

            So you then use Yes or No questions to determine what happened. Most people should recognize this puzzle and the trick being; WE ALL assume Sally and Jimmy are people but they are actually the family fish and the cat knocked the fish bowl over in an attempt to eat them (Never mind why the cat didn’t finish the job).

            Anyway, the lesson in this game relevant to The Thrill of the Chase is; during the game, the person answering the Yes or No questions quickly learns that sometimes the question asked doesn’t have a true or clearly defined Yes or NO answer.

            Staying on topic & Case in point (lets assume we think “blaze” is the key word and we are trying to work out how or what it means):

            Dear Forrest, “Is the Blaze one single object? ~ Scout Around”

            “In a word – Yes, f”

            So, if the Blaze has multiple means in the poem – is this an honest answer?

            I believe – Yes based on my experience of playing the Yes or No game – he qualifies his answer; “in a word” as if to say, if you force me to the point, at least the literal definition is a single object…


          • Forrest often has wiggle room unless the question is precise. If Forrest didn’t want to answer the ~intended~ question, he could always later say that the questioner said “the blaze” rather than “your blaze” or “the blaze in the poem”. I’m not suggesting that the blaze we care about isn’t a single object; just that Forrest’s answer doesn’t confirm that it is.

  27. Rob and Copper,

    Is this the quote you were looking for?

    “She’s playing the gender card folks but I’m wise to it. Perhaps all searchers think they have been mentally close to the treasure but that doesn’t matter much when you get to the bank. A man has been within striking distance but so have some women.” f


    • I don’t know. When/where was the comment made?

      I keep thinking that the post I was referring to was in response to a guy’s book, but definitely not sure about that.

      But I really remember that ff’s post said something about working the numbers, or keep working the numbers, in response to a lady’s search..

      • Rob, it was from Jenny’s site.

        Question posted 7/3/2014:

        Hi Forrest, you said it was a man who came physically closest to the treasure, but who has come mentally closest, like, who seems most likely to interpret the clues correctly – man or woman? ~Lily McG

        “She’s playing the gender card folks but I’m wise to it. Perhaps all searchers think they have been mentally close to the treasure but that doesn’t matter much when you get to the bank. A man has been within striking distance but so have some women. That’s probably not a good subject to discuss considering the volcanic effect it could have in certain blog arenas. I wish someone would ask me a question that I would feel comfortable answering, like what color is a daffodil.f”


          • Good point Rob, search for the Forrest Fire comments.

            Come to think of it, I don’t be live either JCM or include the comments Forrest has made on HoD blog posts.

            Anyone confirm?

  28. I would mention again that Forrest never says there is a “key word”. He says “but a few are in tight focus with a word that is key”. Say Forrest received three e-mails all related to this word. There could be 3 or 4 other words that are key in the poem also, but they wrote him about this word. I think we need to be careful how we are defining that sentence. What if many of the words in the poem are considered words that are key to solving the poem?

    But I am very close to leaving the search. So I don’t mind sharing one very strange idea for the word that is key. This one is off the charts (lol) but interesting. In the poem there is a sentence with a strange acrostic:
    “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze”. The acrostic is : “Wise And Found The”—- WAFT— the first letters of the words spell this. Waft is a very interesting “word”. It is part of the poem but not a word in the poem.

    Now, the words “tight focus” always intrigued me. Also the fact it says “WITH a word that is key”. “Few are in tight focus with a word that is key”— not “on a word that is key” or “tightly focused upon a word that is key”. The sentence has been worded in a SPECIFIC manner. Using “with” hints at this.

    Now, let’s go back to that acrostic “WAFT”. Could it be a “word that is key”? Yes. And perhaps just one of “several” words that are key. Is WAFT being hinted at in the above sentence? Quite possibly. In a slightly hidden manner the word shows up when we do this:

    “A few are in “Tight Focus” with “A Word” that is key”. The string of first letters is interesting. We can do this: Tight Focus With A word that is key” or we can separate as I did: “Tight Focus with A Word that is key”

    In both cases we have TF with AW or TFWA. Both sets of letters when rearranged to spell WAFT (Wise And Found The). So, as crazy as it may sound, WAFT may be one of the key words in the poem “a few” are considering.

    As I mentioned I am going to leave the search very soon, but want to send Dal more of these “strange ideas” along with a “solve” I have had for quite a while now. This has been great fun! But I received this note from Billy Barty just recently:

    “Hi Sparrow. Haven’t found it yet huh? You know why? Because you’re an idiot, an embarrassment, and have an unteachable mind. Throw in the towel you nitwit. I’m going to go haunt some other searcher who might listen to my “little ideas”. You don’t appreciate mine. I’ve told you for over a year it’s in Wyoming you d&_b$ss. All the best, Billy.”

    Someone out there is going to be seeing Billy soon. Good luck to you!

    • I, for one, would hate to see you go Sparrow. Billy certainly was not very kind, I would tell him to go take a leap off of a short pier. Just sayin’ JDA

    • Hi Sparrow – i don’t put much stock in the whole “word key” debacle either tbh – too many rabbit holes, not enough rabbits

      maybe you could stay after all, and we could send Billy packing – whadaya think?

      ..infact, i have free air-travel to Timbuktu especially for him..
      (re: my boot up his ass 🙂 )

    • Sparrow-
      I just banned Billy. If anyone else gets email like that from that guy please feel free to let me know…

      • Thanks Dal for thinning out the weeds… this is a great place, thanks to you… until next time… see ya Dal

    • Sparrow,
      Don’t let the words of billy get under your skin, and certainly don’t let him run you away from chasing your dreams. Just because you don’t see the clues as billy does doesn’t mean that your wrong… heck, you may have the ideas to blow this chase wide open. I have been in the chase and reading these blogs for a long time and what I have noticed is there are some people that are “right” no matter what your “suggestions”are and wont listen to any other ideas from searchers.
      Don’t leave because of some little note from billy. Sparrow, you have been here for a long time too and I consider you a friend, so from one friend to another, hang in there buddy…. billy will pass just like all the other searchers with his mindset….
      If you need a friend to talk to email me at.. springtime1996 at hotmail dot com.

      Until next time… see ya my friend 🙂

    • Sparrow,

      I thought you were over-dramatizing what Billy said, but after reading Dal’s post about banning him I realized I was wrong jumping to that conclusion and owe you an apology.

      That being said, please do not cow tail to idiots like him who seem to get off by saying nasty and demeaning things. Stay in the Chase because if you leave, then he wins.


      • Pina–
        I guess I need to explain. I was joking about Billy Barty. When I first came to the blog I would often say the ghost of Billy Barty was visiting me telling me where to look for the treasure. I picked Billy Barry because I always admired him. He didn’t let his size or being a dwarf stop him from achievino his goals. He kind of became my “alter-ego” on the blog. I’m not a dwarf– though I think many of us can feel that way inside at times. So, there are no “real” letters from Billy chastising me. lol. I’m a little nuts I guess. I will go ahead and post what,Curious Hobbit would most likely say in response to that: “what do you mean ‘a little’ nuts Sparrow?” lol.

    • Sparrow,

      You can only leave the chase, if you are reborn as the Phoenix wafting higher into the searching sky…


  29. Hey Sparrow…Your first paragraph(last sentence) “What if many….”
    ALL of the words in the poem are necessary to solve it…I think that goes w/o saying really.
    Without that(key word) ATF from Fenn…the poem is supposed to be doable…right?. It really matters not (I believe) if a searcher knows it or not. Some folks are betting the farm on some fictitious “word” that they snatch out of the air and run full tilt ahead with…tripping all over the place.
    The more info. added to the mix…the more muddy things get.
    Sorry to hear that you may quit. Your wit and humor will be sorely missed by some…and some will never even think twice. I’m going to think twice right now…so I don’t forget….

    • ken/JDA-

      Thanks. Ken— I believe all words are needed to slove the poem, don’t get me wrong. It,would be stupid to ignore any of them.

      But I truly believe when,Forest mentions “a word that is key” he may be referring to one of the acrostic definitely hidden in the poem. The very first one is GAIT (Gone Alone In There) — This also another “word that is key”. I know, of course that this is all my opinion. I haven’t quite,signed off yet, but plan to next week most likely. But thanks for the kind words.

  30. Thanks CH. Dal– it will be tough to ban that ghost. He only uses email in extreme cases. Mostly he just appears, scorns a little, and then disappears. He’s usually not,so onery. lol.

  31. I’m a little surprised that the Cynthia email concerning multiple key words or (word that is key) Loco dug up
    Isn’t getting more play here.

    Seeker pointed out that it is second/third hand info and that we need to be careful when evaluating it but let’s play devils advocate and take it at face value. So to paraphrase from a couple of cynthia/Fundy entries, the quote is something like this: ‘Almost every line has a key word.’ OR ‘Almost every line has a word that is key.’

    To me, this sort of cheapens the meaning of both ‘key word’ or ‘word that is key’. Here’s what I mean. If there really are somewhere south of 24 key words through out the poem, in Fenns mind, then this certainly doesn’t mean what most people think. If you think he means ‘key word’ in the context of unlocking the rest of the poem and now, suddenly, we find out there are 20 key words (as Fenn sees it) doesn’t that change the value of having a single key? What would we do with 20 or a dozen?
    Seriously, does anyone think we need a dozen or more keys to unlock 9 clues? Seems very unlikely and would also seem a huge departure from the method Fenn has consistently described for solving the poem.

    It seems more likely that his concept of ‘a word(s) that is(are) key’ simply means the words he chose ‘strategically’ to disguise the meaning of the clues. Word choice and word definitions are big with him. This makes a lot more sense than having a mysterious tenth key clue-word that unlocks the the whole shebang. Go listen to the Isaac Cole podcast (5/08/17) where he talks about ‘strategic’ use of words.

    If you really need a single word that is key then what about the one you think was strategically placed to make the first clue difficult….searches choice.

    • Hi Colin is.

      Of course each line has “a word” that is key….otherwise you wouldn’t be able to express the meaning intended of the phrase or sentence.

      Vague quote by FF with really no help in determining if there is just one word or multiple key words embedded into the poem.

      Shoot…I found two “key” words….one opens the region…the other opens the target search area.

      Did I use other key words within the “lines” to achieve this….of course…..

      I looked for a WWWH….the key words here are,…..where warm waters halt. All key to deciphering the riddle of what the phrase is meant to mean.

      The quote is irrelevant to finding “a key word” or “a word that is key” or however you want to say it.

      Just another unfounded rabbit hole.

      Good luck.

      • Tim,
        Hard to tell whether you were responding to me. If so, I’m not sure you got my point.

        But it would seem that you want to have it both ways.
        If I understand you, on the one hand you are calling the original f quote Irrelevant and another unfounded rabbit hole, yet, on the other hand, you are somehow finding multiple key words that give general search area and target areas….using key words as clues (it would seem). Very unclear what your actual position is.

        • Hi Colokid….sorry auto text typo.

          I do want it both ways, because it can be both ways.

          I’ve just not discounted either, but drilled deeper into the different ways that apply to these words and HAVE accepted that the variations can have plausibility to the poem….with either way.

          I’ve posted that FF “deliberately” put these words into the poem using duality…because it continues to keep the difficulty consistent.

          Did that help?

          Good luck!

          • Tim,
            You said:”Shoot…I found two “key” words….one opens the region…the other opens the target search area.”

            My complaint is semantic I guess, because you could have just said ‘….I found two CLUE words…’ since these are moving you closer to the chest. Thats fine if you want to use individual words as clues but in the context of this whole thread I feel using ‘key word’ muddies the water.

            Anyway, to simplify my position, and we may be agreeing partially, I think the Cynthia message makes it likely that there is no ‘key word’ that ‘unlocks’ solving the poem in general. It appears that this is just a phrase fenn uses to refer to his architecture of the poem and words therein.

          • Hi Colokid…nope…after rereading it…I said it correctly.

            The first stanza, IMO, includes a word that allows the seeker to know the area.

            The othe word…I won’t give a placement, unlocks the target search area.

            Maybe I am reading to much into what I have found, but I can’t break it open, and trust me…I am not going to go on another $1000+ trip and not be sure it isn’t just a vacation.

            So yes C….I know what I said. Maybe you just can’t process it as such.

            Good luck to you.

          • Hi Tim,
            First, I’m sorry it took me so long to reply back to your answers. I’m working three jobs now to save for my trip home & time is limited these days. Thank you for all your answers. I couldn’t resist & after reading your comments to Zap. I find everyone’s views interesting, the whole thought process. I’ve always had a strange way of viewing things around me, the little things have always caught my attention. I find it amusing that some have found my question ridiculous. It gives me peace of mind when I hear that. By the way, the beaver is on the same page as the airplane in TTOTC.

    • Colokid,

      My interpretation is that Forrest’s key word acts like the keyed-alike door locks most of us have at our homes, where one key is used to unlock all the exterior doors to the house for example. The big difference is that this is at least a high-security, 9-pin lock, maybe 10-pin. Bowling anyone?

      So if I am correct, then the key word unlocks both the individual clues, and perhaps the state which would be consistent with my theory that 2s are involved, and not strictly with regard to marrying a clue with a place on a map.


    • Colokid…
      Taken “at face value” it certainly devalues the whole “word that is key” concept. That has been a sticking point for me all along. Somehow I just do not believe that Fenn based this whole Chase on one (stand alone) password. Sure…I have mused about it…and certainly based some ideas on this concept…but in the end…I continue to return to the basics.
      Every word in that poem is important according to what the man has said all along. Following that premise is probably going to be the actual “key” to the correct solution. Your post kind of mirrors what I was doing yesterday in terms of looking at the structure of the title of his new book. The word “while” is pretty interesting; makes me think again about what I have been doing with some of the words in the poem.
      I agree totally with your …”huge departure…”
      My final comment on this is that if Fenn did not make this public knowledge to begin with…maybe he would like to weigh in some time on the subject…or not.
      Good topic…

      • ken,
        Sounds like you get what I’m saying.

        Yes, if we take the Cynthia message at face value. So that’s a leap but it feels right. There are no other consistent quotes that would hint at the need for a special key that deciphers the poem as a whole.

      • @ ‘kid & ken,


        Our ‘processing’ has always been, shall we say, different…but, I look at it this way, there’s a whole lot less competition!! 🙂

        (ken, I think Fenn knew exactly what he was doing when he uttered whatever words about the ‘key’….in whatever context, when he did and to whom he did! 🙂 )

        my use of the word Gospel, in my OP was tongue-in-cheek. I think seeker missed that…..hope you guys didn’t?

        Good Luck to ya’ll

        • I saw it with both eyes Loco…
          I think Seeker may have been low on coffee
          Thanks…same to youse.

        • Loco,

          Got it. Thanks for tossing out another overlooked gem BTW.

          Puzzles me why many folks don’t like kicking ideas around any more but I guess that’s what happens when they already have all the answers. Different thinking threatens old solves??

          Probably why I don’t hang around here much anymore.

          • I wish we could put this key word thing to rest. But you guys know it won’t go away. People will continue to guess. I think a few believe there is no key word, but let the noobs continue to entertain us. If it was so important, he would have said it back in 2010.
            Now you may have opened up a whole new can of worms, kid. Now people will come out with there 15 needed words that are key to unlocking the poem. lol, can’t wait.
            The sooner that people stop looking for some key word and focus more on the poem, the better off they will be. Maybe the next argument will be the “unlocking” of the clues compared to the “solving” of the poem. Time to dust off the darts…

          • charlie,
            Agree….this topic is mostly dead for me now but as you point out I’m sure the guessing will continue.

            Lookin forward to the entertainment from the ‘can ‘o worms’. LOL

      • ken,

        The word that is key just gets you through Stanza #2 so from there it’s no place for the meek…

        You then still have to understand the correct path to take. You are very close at this point but close doesn’t get you to the bank, as Forrest says.

        So each line and it’s interpretation is critical – there is no shortcut…


        • CCG
          I agree, in my opinion, word that is KEY get you to the second part of the poem. In my case it’s not stanza 2 but very close to it. In my solution stanza 2 contains discriptive clues in itself. The word that is KEY unlocks the abstract part of the poem. In my opinion, the abstract part is significantly more difficult to solve than the discriptive one.

        • Thanks GCG…I would have never figured that one out. A “partial” word that is key….hmmm. ‘At the end of the day’…Each searcher has to own what they are doing.

  32. You gotta have heart
    All you really need is heart
    When the odds are saying you’ll never win
    That’s when the grin should start

    Peggy Lee knows.

  33. No luck so far finding a Forrest Fire comment about numbers.

    But let’s look at “it, it’s” as key. There are many, at least a few who might have done this process. The process helped me long ago. I’m not saying that “it, it’s” is key, but ‘it’ helped me think.

    It It’s Down – poem word count: 27,34,55,112,132
    It It’s Up – poem word count: 140,133,112,55,35

    Sum/subtract each. And then adjust each (equally) and do the same process. Use a column format. And look at the big picture by summing the grand totals in your columns. Brainstorm and cross-sum/subtract. Time-consuming yes.

    And then I found a design deficiency in my thinking (much, much later), so I had to further adjust.

    Page 76 ttotc – “I bought into that pretty good. All the pilots did.” But then Forrest adjusted his thinking, page 82 – ” ‘It’ was a funeral!!!” and hating those in their fat offices.

    Isn’t “adjustment of thinking” a major theme in the book?

    Maybe these thoughts will help you.

    • Rob, a catch 22 is in the mix with your #’s, I know what was a popular feeling during the Vietnam Conflict, because I was there, even using the word conflict is a catch er in the rye…as Marvin Gaye use to say, save all the babies, and time is the most important gift ff was given back, in 1989 a gift of recovery, in Vietnam a gift of survival, finding his Indiana Jones persona, priceless..


    • Percepetion is interpretation.

      Interpretation is Self.

      Self – the body, mind, thoughts, decisions, actions, free will, and just about anything done in life.

      We choose to decide to do what we want…where we want…and sometimes we aren’t listening, seeing or feeling those things out completely in order to adjust our effort.

      So….. we then fail from the effort.

      Digging deeper into our own Self allows one to see your failures and hopefully help in avoiding them in the future.


    • Rob… right you are. Last sentence, page 8, OUAW, Leon River bridge jump. “… difficult tasks sometimes requires only a simple mental adjustment.” Quite a few phrases repeat themselves across Fenn’s 3 books, the SB’s & articles etc.
      A couple that always interested me were “another dimension” and “design deficiency”. Comments anyone?

      I have no clue about your: IF Down, IF UP numbers. Can you explain that a little. I don’t think there are ciphers or codes created by Fenn & I’d like to know what so many people get out of that approach. Thanks, OS2

  34. OS2 – I’ve adjusted my numbers, because of design deficiency, in the case above. Also, paraphrase, I have had to be aware that Forrest stated page 6 the skylight (flat above the bathroom) was a design deficiency – so I just keep that in mind as I think about the chase (this example I did not adjust, just must be aware of what number I view – mental adjustment). Also, page 128, “Think about that for a minute. Surely that’s a design deficiency of a sort.” I get multiple answers with this and am not sure of the correct deficiency. The minute, in my mind, is a coordinate, and your answer will depend on your treasure chest target. In other words, different treasure sites will have an individual adjustment that matches (my thought).

    Another dimension – I sort of enjoyed reading Flatlander, by A Square. He certainly was offensive to the female gender (didn’t like that), but explored some concepts that you might find useful. The book is in the public domain and free. And my thought only, done it tired is one aspect of done it flat.

    • PS – I do not consider what I have done to be a code or cipher, rather just following what Forrest stated.

      • We’ll, that said, it didn’t explain anything to me about the Down/Up #’s you posted … I don’t know where you got them from. Are you counting something? Its a sequence of 5 #’s, so it can’t be the words in 6 stanzas. Did Fenn write those #’s somewhere? I vacillate on using the numbers he did write in TTOTC … ex: the register guys pay rate, the o’clock #’s asleep, etc. Are they values or angles of the hands of the clock (geometry) It seems too easy and unlikely to associate words like minutes in a coordinate to minutes on a clock, though the share geometric roots. They were unnecessary to the stories so do they must mean something to the hunt? Some pages that seem to hold a lot of geometry words… are they path references? Why do people keep leaving by a side door? Does that mean 90°? I haven’t found anything that I gives me confidence yet. And math is way above my pay grade.

        • Yes OS2 – I counted the word “It” and “It’s” in the poem, position in the poem, top to bottom and bottom to top.

          And yes to your comment about time, minutes etc. and importance. Forrest wrote it, not us (and I try to use all of what he has said). I also think the book is highly planned, but not to the extent of the poem.

    • Hi Rob,
      “And my thought only, done it tired is one aspect of done it flat.”
      I understand where you are coming from with your way of thinking but I might add one thing. Mr Fenn has stated not change or discount any of the words in the poem. As we all know many of the words have multiple meanings, so to substitute one word for another changes the poem completely. You need to take every definition & research each one. We all have read about Mr. Fenn & his adventures, I believe we can use process of elimination with a lot of the definition. Every word is important, you just have to view them at the right angle.

  35. Hi Sparrow (no, not the dead character from Game of Thrones): failed to reply to your post in Key Word 5 before it closed (regarding the illustration of Bella and Forrest at the table having coffee):

    “Zap—I don’t have any of Forrest’s books—I’ve thought about buying the new one. I mainly have just stayed with the poem—-and the SB’s for hints. lol. But if it is a fork in the illustration that would be interesting.”

    It is indeed a solitary fork. And for others following along, Bella says to Forrest: “Everything is on the table.”

  36. Zap—-

    Thanks—I don’t have the book. Out of curiosity is the fork in the middle of the table, or to the right or left? I’ll have to buy the book–I’m just cheap. lol

    • I have only flipped through the new book.
      Which page are you referring to?
      And what’ the original scrapbook.

      If you said all this up thread, sorry for the reppeatt but I am working from my email.


    • Hi Sparrow and Lugnutz: I’m referring to TFTW pg. 171. In the illustration, Bella is on the left pointing to the right. My book is at home, so I don’t recall the exact position of the fork. I think it’s on the table in front of Forrest rather than in front of Bella.

      Speaking of books, I made a lengthy post about Once Upon a While in “The Book” thread over the weekend. So far, I don’t think anyone has seen it (or at least no one has commented yet).

  37. Lug—
    I think Zap is talking about TTOTC book—not the new book. he can confirm though of course.

  38. A word that is key. It’s actually quite beautiful. The way Forrest did it. When you find it you know. You know for for certain. I know, I’m just blowin smoke right. I will be vague just like everyone else is too, but if you follow the blaze you will find the key word.

  39. So did this whole conversation come about because of Cowlazar upload on YouTube? I must say it’s quite intriguing ! While contemplating the idea I couldn’t help but picture Forrest sitting in his library solving the daily crossword puzzle in the local news paper. My grandmother made of practice of doing this and said it kept her mind sharp.

  40. Enough about the key word. Ronnie the Scotsmen is going to tell us about the Wee Kurd. It’s a wonderful story about a short Kurdish man told as only a fine Scotsmen could.

  41. Forrest says the chest isnt locked. we dont need the key, is in side the chest. so he says. few are in tight focus with this word that is key. tight focus, tunnel vision. chest in a tunnel, cave,unlocked. a small group,few, found a chest in a cave. what word opens an unlocked chest in a cave. i dont know. nevermind.

  42. I just learned this very morning that their is such a thing as “A Poem Within A Poem”
    Example: The War is my enemy
    It Will Take my soul
    My Heart is the only friend
    It Will Break though
    But My Love is forgotten
    I Will See what’s in store
    When Death comes to greet me
    and Sets Me Free at my door
    Now read the poem then go back though it and read only the capitalized words down! This is so very fascinating

      • “brave” ready to face danger; I rule this out because F. said the chest in not in a dangerous place.

        “brave” an indian warrior; this makes more sense. The chest may be in a location that has a famous brave associated with it.

        “wood” trees, nothing man made, because F. said the treasure is not associated with any structure. Surely “wood” would refer to trees.

        “wood” I don’t think it’s a reference to Wood’s Creek, the area is too remote, F. would not have hiked down in there at 79 or 80 years of age.

        • Aaron—

          Thanks for sharing that—I hadn’t seen that before. Very interesting story—and really lends credence to “wood” being defined in a very old way as “crazy”. In the wood could mean you’ve temporarily lost your rocker. lol And the fact it’s written by a Frenchman is interesting too.

        • Aaron—-
          Thanks for sharing that. I hadn’t seen that before. Very interesting and funny story. It actually lends credence to the thought that “in the wood” could refer to a mental state (as an old definition of wood does) rather than a physical location.

          The writer of the story is French also— which is interesting. Have you ever taken note of the many references to French things in some of Forrest’s writings?

          • Sparrow,

            If the Chase comes to an end before I do, then I’d love to share with the HoD a perfect “brave and in the wood” I found when searching a different location from where I am now. And, I might add, the “in a word – yes” thing was very close by too. I’m fairly certain Forrest would appreciate this particular spot/place for what it represents. Wish I could say more.

            Unfortunately, I still cherish that solve and don’t want to divulge at this time, but I have now moved on to another neck of the woods, no pun intended. IMO this new area has got a lot of classes/potential, but I’ve kind of hit a big wall trying to pull it all together because I’m brain dead.

            Tomorrow’s another day and the sun is finally shining here in the PAC NW. Good night all.


    • *boos and hisses at the word ‘wood’ *
      That was the word…”would” that costed me my 2nd grade Spelling Bee win…

      Dang you “wood”!!

      Forever you are dead to me!!!


      • “dead wood” gives a whole new meaning to “brave and in the wood”, but doesn’t narrow down the search area at all.

      • Haha! That’s funny!
        My loss was the word
        I spelt it a dress. I knew better dag nab it…it was my noives! 😉

  43. “wise”
    Y Eyes And found the Blaze

    You have to be Y Eyes to find the blaze.
    (o) (o)

  44. Ok Zap,
    I promised to get back with you on a further review of the poem to look for a pattern regarding a repetitive word which is key in the poem.

    Here is what I see so far:
    The most used synonyms in the poem are: Secret, Bold, no place for the meek, brave, gone alone, your effort will be worth the cold, wise, high, cool or “cold”, hint is to confide, to blaze is to lead to pioneer, quickly, to already have the answers, to know, to go in peace (is a quiet confidence) – all are synonyms or strongly related to Confidence.

    Which is curious given his quote regarding the person who finds the treasure will move with confidence…

    Also the word “I” occurs 7 times which can be substituted with Forrest name which can be interesting. But even more interesting is the idea of being in “tight focus” with a word that is key since the word “I” is the simplest letter (also its a narrow or thin letter) so if Forrest was referring to “I” then this is a clever pun which seems right in his wheel-house, so to speak…

    “I” is a pronoun (which is a special case of Nouns so this would also correspond with his comments of the importance of Nouns in the poem) This would be another clever way to hide the important Nouns in plane site, which is also right in his wheel-house…

    That is all for now – If I’m on your track let me know.


    • GCG,
      IF eye may… are we being too academic with word and not enough imagination? Yet, I understand you were just responding to Zap.
      Example; “I” meaning sight [corrupting the word slightly ] So, we have “take it in” a term used for eye [i] or view something, right? We have canyon down… however, canon was the original word [ we are told to ‘hear’ and ‘listen’ as well. {one way to do this is by the words themselves} ].

      Tight focus of a word that is key, being “i” eye equal tight focus ‘in-line’ with canon or sighting down a barrel or alignment of a canon or like object. [ straight long object ]

      Begin it where wwwh AND view with tight focus [ take it in ] quickly [thinking] down the barrel alignment, line of thinking. This would add preciseness to clues and not just wondering about… Not far, but too far to walk… at this juncture, could be the actual distance “observed” and not guessing or driving.

      I think fenn inadvertently thrown a curve ball when he mentioned ‘plain English’ to mean what we think a word should be… but we took this comment as leaving out “imagination” of word usage and what we might need more of… “hear me all and listen good” [ to the words ] your effort [start] will be worth the cold [warm waters halt]?

      My real point here isn’t so much about the words in any given line or sentences, and more to, how other parts of the poem might be needed to understand our “planning” and ‘observing’ and ‘hearing’…
      This could be why Little Indy “can not get closer”… botg at this juncture is needed [ even if we have a good idea of what the clues refer to, prior to leaving home ].

      Some may say this would be ‘subterfuge’ ‘tom foolery’ to ‘plain English’ However… I think it might be important to know, or think about, the difference between reading and hearing. We are told to read the poem and think and analyze and use imagination [ mostly imagination ] and observe.

      I’m gonna throw another thought out here, which I know many will not like… WhatIF this challenge was actually mean to take ‘time’ to finalize by observing? Another words, some or all the clues can only be “completely [completed?] solve at certain points and times.
      Difficult, but not impossible?

      Food for thought………..

      • I’m not buying the whole word substitution theory. I am convinced that the words are to be interpreted as written. The poem is hard enough to solve without using “sound-alike” words.

        • Tom B, there’s another angle to the substitution method that many might not think about but do anyway with botg.

          Like what GCG said above…The most used synonyms in the poem are: Secret, Bold, no place for the meek, brave, gone alone, your effort will be worth the cold, wise, high, cool or “cold”, hint is to confide, to blaze is to lead to pioneer, quickly, to already have the answers, to know, to go in peace (is a quiet confidence) – all are synonyms or strongly related to Confidence.

          I haven’t heard one search go botg and act/search in a meek way cause the poem says no place for the meek. The poem tells you that it’s no place for the meek so you better substitute meekness for confidence or something.

          Of course, there’s the Joseph Meek quote to think about but it could be as simple as substituting something for meek in the poem and botg that unlocks the blaze or some other clue.

          • Synonyms are very useful, I agree. What I do not agree with is “eye” for “I” and other substitutions which are totally different words.

          • KeΩΩ –

            From there it’s no place for the meek,

            There’ll be no paddle up your creek,

            The Meek couldn’t find any beaver in the Rocky Mountains eventually.

          • Things sure have changed; haven’t they?


            Who is this meek and why was he hunting for beaver?

          • That quote:

            Fur trapper Robert Newell lamented the fact that the mountain men were becoming horse thieves and robbers. Summarizing the feelings of old mountain men toward the demise of the fur trade and the new lawless breed, Newell told Joe Meek, “We are done with this life in the mountains—done with wading in beaver dams and freezing or starving alternately—done with Indian trading and Indian fighting. The fur trade is dead in the Rocky Mountains, and it is no place for us now. “

        • You mean like how a butterfly is really a flutterby, cause that’s what they do, they sort of flutter by. They’re not flys, and far as I know they don’t like butter.

          • Ken,
            A butterfly is a given name… a flutterby is what we see / observe. Meek is a given surname, but meek should be a place and not a person, right? ~ not capped.
            The problem with meek meaning the all RM’s is, there is no considerate location for it as such “from there” would need to be just as large as the range as well, right?… so is it more likely that meek might refer to a land feature or “title” rather than people’s names?

          • That’s what I meant, no PLACE for the meek; moreover, meek could be the fellow that “the place” is no place for, assuming F. forwent the capitalization in order to draw your attention to the place rather than the person.

            If you think about it, the Rocky Mountains themselves are no place for anyone who is meek, at least not anywhere off the tourist path. A path that I loathe BTW, much the same way that F. hates when galleries and museums put up signs that say “do not touch”, but I digress.

          • Ke double o…first saying things like ‘___’ could ONLY be x is dangerous around here and also very ‘know it all’ sounding…follow up with IMO IMO IMO or at least provide better justification for WHY you think that…it boils down to an unsupported statement by you and that’s it…discussions involve more than statements…IMO.

            For your flutter by comment, also consider that FF was a very good pilot…that perspective of flight (a machine that can create lift, an airfoil) is quite different than insect flight…they technically still ‘fly’ but the physics is quite different…has a lot to do with SCALE (i.e. size/weight/power). That comment is weird in context of the ‘backwards bicycle’, weird because how to apply to the chase…I’ve heard all kinds of theories, none of which have produced the chest. Too much confidence out there IMO…I define confidence as ‘belief that you will succeed’…belief does not = truth…interesting tangent: FF says his church is in the mountains…I have lived by that myself, in that I don’t believe you have to have ‘faith’ dictated to you in a building on a certain day, the tenets of modern religion are all easy to understand in terms of morality, but the dogma aspects always made me feel dirty (even as a kid)…sit, kneel, stand, sing this…it all points to control/conformity…we all know FF does not live that way. For me, I can conclude FF is a SPIRITUAL man but not a fan of religion…IMO, his stories tell of his learned wisdom (aka experience) about the fragility of life, leaving a good legacy and above all being good to others. Native American spirituality extends that thinking to the planet, something sorely missing these days…the ‘conquer’ mentality will get us nowhere (chase included), being PART OF the mountains, air, grass, animals is the key..IMO…sorry for the rambles

          • “it boils down to an unsupported statement by you and that’s it…discussions involve more than statements…IMO”.

            In *my opinion* Tbug, everything that’s said in here is an unsupported statement, whether you like it or not, no one has found the chest, making everything conjured thus far nothing more than speculation.

        • Tom,
          It actually not a substitution at all… it’s the original word in ‘Plain English” Canon / canyon are the same… yet can cleverly refer to two things at once for “interpretation” of a “poem”… Multiple Meanings and Usages.
          A simple example would be boot… as a trunk.
          A bonnet… as a hood.

          A bonnet can be a hat or a hoodie [ sweat shirt style as it’s called today ]. or a hood of a car.
          A boot can refer to a car trunk.
          These terms and usages are important, imo, to context of how words in the poem reference a clues interpretation… In plain English… if you only want canon to mean a big whole, I’m ok with that. But I think you’re eliminating actual meanings of words only by using verbalization of modern ideas.

          Look up “wood” and see what it means… one meaning is petrified.
          Look up “brave” one meaning is to take on a challenge… not so much being fearless.

          Horseshoe Kenn uu, I can’t make that symbol.
          If Meek was meant as a surname, wouldn’t if be capitalized? Fenn uses capitalization in the poem, right? I think, meek refers to a ‘now’ named place but for different reasoning than a surname. Not unlike butterfly to flutterby… No place for the meek can refer to The USA ~ home of the brave. Or The backbone of the RM’s ~ continental divide.

          Just curious… what would make more sense? A surname of people. Or land features and/or titles of lands? When reading the poem as “…clues to a place on a map…”

          • Seeker. No question that various word meanings are in play. But they have to make sense when combined with other words around them. My point is that a sentence needs to make sense as a whole. Then each sentence has to make sense with the preceding and following sentence.

          • What would make more sense is the correct interpretation of the poem, whether meek refers to geography, which it does, it’s just that location could very well be a place that someone named Meek would have been better off not going. No PLACE for the meek. ΩΩ

          • I am sure that many folks have spent some time sorting through the poem highlighting what the nouns may be. In doing so…I suspect that more than a few folks have discovered that many of the words can be more than a noun. Sorting them in order…and discovering alternative meaning can lead in many different directions when applying other definitions. One thing leads to another….

          • Tom,
            My thoughts in a “poem” related writing is; a poem allows the writer to use words with more than one usage…
            In this case canyon and canon are the same in a feature, and at the same time different in a action or instructions that might relate to the poem.
            Canon / canyon as a feature that is a pointer in this case. While using the word canon as to mean a line of sight or two sights as a pointer, not unlike a barrel of a gun. So, look at it this way… you’re standing on a ridge in just the right location, and something is there that can be utilized as two sights pointing [ silly example; two pointed rock formations ]… or even… the canyon itself, as a V shape, is now your sight alignment from point A to Point B viewing from a scant position. ‘Not far, but line of sight’

            To dismiss the word or words to be only one exact spelling but they still are one in the same leads to one thing / thinking only… we all must travel IN and OUT a canyon/canon, twice. I look at the poem as having not ‘only’ directions, but instructions as well.
            One instruction is the “hear ‘Me’ and listen,” right?
            LOL when do we do this? BOTG only [listen for waterfalls or if a tree makes a sound when it falls? Or while we are trying to decipher the poem?

            I’m not saying change the word, I’m saying words are difficult themselves over time… and fenn was thinking down the road when he wrote the poem, and ever word was deliberate.

            So far, the only impact we know of, as far as how the poem plays out, is due to the movement of the land… not the word’s usages, in 3009. If movement can affect the outcome… does that have to do with observation of the clues and their preciseness to a 10″ sq piece of land…?
            Follow and lead are a couple of words you might want to look up there usages. Just saying……..

          • Seeker…funny you mentioned “canon” and followed it with different uses…feature and action. Couple of weeks ago one of our dogs munched up my wife’s Canon EOS T5i and I ordered up a new body. I was thinking about “tight focus”, land features and directive while completing the transaction. Interesting that all in one fell swoop a searcher could end up in a different mindset/location by applying ALL of the “meanings” with just one word.
            Line of sight also fits nicely with Fenn’s short essay on land measures used in simple land survey. Along those same lines…while at that one spot…maybe there is only one direction a searcher could look.
            It may be prudent to even go so far as to look into word origination/etymology in some cases. I say this to logically stave off word change over time. The root will probably always remain constant.

          • Seeker;

            “Lead” and “Follow” do have some interesting meanings. Thanks for the advice – JDA

      • Sorta like his comment on the predetermined blaze: 15 minutes thinking on what to say… It’s been 30 minutes now and I’ll pass. Two times, first to think and then to act. Why?

        • Maybe he (fenn) could not wrangle/twist an answer out of the words in the question.

        • Oz10,
          And, fenn answered a question about switching back… think about that. The answers was no.

          I think the blaze is mention as a feature in the poem and found on sight… as well as searcher within 500′ of the chest… the catch in my opinion is… the blaze is not in stanza 4 or below… but the first thing we need to know.

          All that crap is surly an opinion…. but done by clever deduction.

          • Seeker, I wasn’t talking about switching back.

            ‘I think the blaze is mention as a feature in the poem and found on site’

            I agree with that premise, many searchers recently have been giving their input on this topic. If a blaze is anything that stands out, how will that play out on the field? There are too many things that will stand out.

            The clues in the poem should build to it. That is where I think the time comes into play, from one clue to the next. As ff says, we shouldn’t start in the middle of the poem anyways so the blaze may not be a word that is key. (to stay on topic)

          • The word in question is “blaze” so why is he not on topic?

            Also; if F. said we should not start in the middle of the poem, then why did he put the first clue in the second stanza? That would, IMO, imply that Begin it where warm waters halt is not the starting point, but only the first clue he gives.

          • ΩΩ,

            Not on topic cause we are talking about the blaze in the ‘keyword’ section of the blog.

            He says not to start in the middle for a reason. The first stanza will help you solve the first clue on the second stanza. At least that is what many say here with no proof but I have the suspicion that they are right by aberration. Lol…

          • Not on topic because we’re talking about the blaze in the keyword section?

            What if “blaze” is the keyword, which is why I thought it was being discussed.

          • You may be right. I believe he was talking about those looking for the blaze on the field, like the searcher who thought a bird on a tree was a blaze.

            But if someone uses the blaze in the poem as a marker of sorts (or a key), to understand some of the previous or later lines in the poem that will describe such blaze then it makes sense.

          • Hi OZ.

            I see you are slowly coming around to stay in my camp.

            Good. Lots of good stuff and cookies on the dark side!


            I wrote a post on this theory already….maybe under one of “the Blaze” blogs.

            IMO – and as I stated before – I think the trail/blaze is marked about every 500ft or maybe 1000 ft….or on each mile distance tranversed.

            Or something like that.

            “If you’ve found the blaze”…..
            Informs me that I should already have seen the blaze….and that should take me to the TC.

            IMO – FF marked a trail for us to find…PRIOR to arriving within the 200 ft radius.

            Now you see why I say the path can only be walked with BOTG.


          • Tim,

            I like your idea, but regarding this:

            FF marked a trail for us to find…PRIOR to arriving within the 200 ft radius.

            Do you mean, the trail is marked and be found on a map? or did he physically marked his trail? How do you proposed the system of markings he used would last for hundreds or thousands of years? What kind of mark you trust that will be permanent and not disturbed by some troll?

          • Hi OZ.

            Yes marked…while he placed the treasure.

            “I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak”…

            Notice FF still uses a comma.

            Anyhow…..yes…I think you need to find a marked trail…and that requires BOTG.

            No other way.

            Cheers and good luck.

        • Oz. I think that is a hint. 30 plus 15 equals 45 minutes. 45 minutes on a clock makes a 90 degree angle, if you measure from the 9 to 12. He uses 90 a lot. If you know what 90 refers to then you are on your way to finding the word that is key. All IMHO.

          • JohnR, I thought about that but I think is not another 30 minutes over the 15 for a total of 45.
            …I have been thinking for 15 minutes about what to say. It has been 30 minutes now and I’ll pass.

            I think is 15 plus 15 equals 30. So the hand in the clock is facing down or south now, is that a key I don’t know.

          • IMO you’re wrong, because 15 minutes makes a 90 degree angle. 45 minutes makes a 270 degree angle. *

            15 Minutes = 90 Degrees
            15 + 15 = 90 + 90 = 180
            15 + 15 + 15 = 90 + 90 + 90 = 270 *
            15 + 15 + 15 + 15 = 90 + 90 + 90 + 90 = 360

          • Q~Can the blaze be pre-determined by the poem or can it only be determined at the search area?- becky
            A~Becky, you are a rascal to ask that question and I have been sitting here for about fifteen minutes trying to decide what to say. Well, it has been thirty minutes now and I think I’ll pass on the question. Sorry.f

            It doesn’t sound like 45 minutes to me, so your theory about the 270 degree angle is wrong. 🙂

          • “Oz. I think that is a hint. 30 plus 15 equals 45 minutes. 45 minutes on a clock makes a 90 degree angle”

            Errrrmmm, no it doesn’t.

    • GCG,

      After reading your assessment on word repetition within the poem and possible key/keys, I need to ask, what is your take on the word *it* ?

        • FD,

          Sure anybody can give their opinion. What I would like us to explore is the abstract-hidden-double meaning of the word *it*. The literal meaning of -begin the journey- is no secret and it does not take any interpretation.

          I suspect there is some kind of impersonation going on there. I may be wrong but if there is room to deduct that the *I* in the first stanza does not always means (Forrest) then the -it- becomes interesting as well.

          I also suspect that (Begin it where…) taken as just the journey, is the main reason searchers fall in the first and biggest rabbit hole. It leaves the first stanza as just an introduction and that may disrupt the flow and understanding of the clues.

          • Oz, I agree that the I in the first stanza prbly refers to some other person(s) along with f. Someone back in time.

            I think that is a separate puzzle than the ‘it’ situation you brought up. With all the its in the poem I believe, like you, the first it and many of the other ones are put in the poem to mask the one it that is very important.

            I find the it in the line From there, it’s no place for the meek as the significant it. This is because of a little discussion that took place on this thread ystdy or this morning. The other poster wrote about how that line equates to saying From there, it’s (it is) the place for the confident searcher. The other poster used a different word than confident but I can’t quite remember the actual word…but it meant the same thing.

            So, I added a comment that to me that line gives us an X on the map in that it confirms that it is the place without messing with the poem. Btw, messing with the poem would be to go meek from to that place.

            So, what is that it. I think that it is the blaze. I think that’s why the vast majority of searchers or others would never stumble upon the blaze let alone the tc. I can think of only one thing out in nature that represents an ‘it’ if you think about it. I remember that f worked with lodge pole pines while a teenager.

          • FD, good write up. You wrote:

            So, I added a comment that to me that line gives us an X on the map in that it confirms that it is the place without messing with the poem.

            How were you able to narrow down to a specific location with that general description of confidence?

          • Oz10, from continuing to follow what I think the clues are. I put in below my hoB then from there it is the place for me (in this example I’m a confident searcher, lol).

            I actually don’t think it’s a general description of confidence. I think that confidence is the most important word that is key and when used correctly reveals the blaze.

      • OZ10,

        The 3 lines which have ‘it’ in them:

        Begin it
        Take it
        From there it’s

        ‘It’ refers to both the literal and the riddle…


      • Fundy, I agree with your quote to OZ:
        “ I agree that the in the first stanza prbly refers to some other person(s) along with f. Someone back in time.”…. BUT, with a switch, I don’t think this ‘I” is another person.

        To me, the opening of Stanza 1, “As I have gone alone” is strong & evocative In normal speech, a person would say ‘I went in there’, & without a mention of another person, a reader would assume ‘alone’. To say ‘As I have gone alone’ is a tell. This Alone is not a human’s short-term Alone like a trip to a fishing hole or time at a beautiful observation point. This Alone endures. Geography? Not a mountain or lake, but the voice of a river.

        Possibly a river that does not merge, or lose or change its name. One with a good mountain drainfield but no significant support from tributaries, iI is ever ALONE.

        Well, that how I see it as the meaningful UNDERLYING LAYER…. The top layer is a mimic describing the treasure placer’s actions.

        Funny thing, that river may be speaking again in stanza 5…. the answers it knows may be the reason it is tired and weak, maybe its gravity, civilization, erosion, etc.

        We are all environmentalists to some degree. IMO, OS2.

          • Thank you ken.
            To my sense, Alone describes the Where.
            If you can’t call it a clue, call it a keyword,
            Good luck. OS2

          • Hi OS2…I disagree.

            I would be inclined to say “in there” is more of an indicator on a location, and ‘alone’ describes an action being taken.

            AIHGAIT = “as I go alone in there” has the same connotation and seems to explain things of why and where. Whether anyone can pull it out, is yet to be certain.

            I have a place, it works for the powm, but is it accurate.

            With the commas in place, it does.

            Is it still coincidence and a guess?
            – Probability shows me it is not.

            “Alone” may help, but we already know he did it by himself. Which by happenchance, is the most straight forward and direct way to read this word. In the sentence.

          • Hi Tim,
            Agreed, “in there” is an indication on a location. However, the phrasing is subtle and particular, and I find “gone alone” describes more than an action being taken. It describes a condition. A meaningful condition.

            Also, my unicorn says that probability is a counter’s game, not a reasoner’s game. Enjoyed you post. OS2

          • Hi OS2.

            You wrote:

            “Also, my unicorn says that probability is a counter’s game, not a reasoner’s game. Enjoyed you post. OS2”

            We are playing FF’s game….my games are irrelevant to your thinking.

            I was just informing the thread, probability winsvwith my solve, because once you add imagination, well, reasoning sort of falls to,the wayside, but probability remains.

            I guess you forgot to add imagination….maybe??


            Interpretation is Pereception.

            Perception is Self.

            Self is the mind….the body…the thoughts….the decisions…..the motivation….the courage….the spiritual….the adventurer….the outdoorsman….the treasure hunter…..the dreamer….the finder.

            Good luck.

          • …and by all means….no distespect….just a direct sense of comparison to your thinking with mine, even when you “agree”.

            Seriously…no bad intents…that is why the smile….I just wanted to nudge you a bit harder to look deeper….I think you are on the right path…….but……

            I don’t have Indulgence, so I am just “guessing”…..LOL…..

            Good luck.

      • GCG,
        IF “IT” refers to something… It would need to be specific to an other part of the poem. I’m not sure if it has to be prior to “begin it” or could be after… but lets play with “hint’s of riches new and old”

        While reading the poem [ the very first time ] we have no idea what fenn is talking about, right? At this point everything is a guess… So we continue to read. Now we see many IT and IT’s.
        The poem could have read as; Begin wwwh and take the canyon down, NFBTFW put in below the hoB. From there is no place for the meek… as an example.

        Later in stanza 5 we are presented with a question; So why is “IT” I must go, right?
        The poem could have read; So why must I go and leave my trove for all to seek…
        None of the “IT or IT’s” seem to change anything at all to, how the poem could be read exactly the same without all the “it’ or It’s”

        LOL, there’s a reason for my ‘show and tell’ to get to my point and suggestion… And hints of riches new and old, imo, would be the references to what the “IT or ITs” refer to. Not so much a clue, but a reference needed to read the poem correctly and not JUST read the poem. This, Hint of riches new and old might be the “answers” I already know… “I’ve done “It” tired and now I’m weak.”

        So, while these parts of the poem seem to be ‘out of order to clues being in order’ [ and many want to call stanzas 1 5 6 as fillers or legal telling or change there placements or dismiss them altogether ] … we still need to pull information out of this poem to understand those clues, how to read the clues, and how to decipher the clues.
        IF “IT” or “IT’s” are important to know…. My best answer would be leaning towards stanza 1 … Understanding; Riches of NEW and OLD. And in this case, I think the book is where we, pick up what fenn is puttin down.

        However, In both stanzas 1 and 5 we have a ‘hmmm’
        “As I have…” vs. “I’ve done”…Are these also indicators to New and Old?
        Why are these written differently but seem to mean the same… My question is.. Are they meant as the same?

        FF~ “I looked up words and definition of words and changed them. Went back and rebooted. It turned out exactly like I wanted…”

        • “Why are these written differently but seem to mean the same”

          IMO – writing the same thing over and over word-for-word would make the poem more like a song with a repeating refrain and therefore less imaginative & poetic.

  45. Seeker, KeΩΩ, ken & JDA

    The use of Canon/Canyon are pronounced differently. the use of Canon has no value and unrelated to the poem. I believe over exaggeration of the words in the poem and use of different meanings for a “single word” to replace the original intent of any word has no value. Over thinking of the poem and how its read I believe will produce nothing.

    Example: “tarry scant” doe not mean tar flat rocks as JDA described above. –Not exact quote from JDA–. The words “tarry scant” = don’t delay and don’t be late.

    Using the words to twist or make fit is = to forcing things to fit in a solve. I believe using the words in the poem in simple terms only. The 9 clues in the poem creates a map. How is this working for me? Great.

    Overall I disagree with anything that creates more confusion by use of different meanings, numbers, ciphers or cryptic. As F has said, don’t mess with his poem. I take him literally.

    The key word is, clues

    • Charlie;

      Sorry, you are wrong. Only one, of several meanings of
      “The words “tarry scant” = don’t delay and don’t be late.”

      Why restrict yourself to only the most common definitions of a word? Just does not make sense to me – but if it does to you so be it—just do not state as fact something that is your opinion – Just sayin’ – JDA

      • I think it’s more impressive if f pulled off writing his poem while using just the common definitions of words. There’s value there if that’s how it was done.

        • Yes he did, it was so simple it took me 5 years to figure it out. Just kidding, with a slathering of sarcasm on the side, BUT that’s just my opinion.

          • Ke

            I still have not figured out how you get the double Omega’s. I tried Ke(Shift WW) – use Symbols font = two omegas – it types fine in word. Cut and past here = KeBox Box??? Help – JDA

          • Thanks Guys;

            Let me try the cut and paste – KeΩΩ

            YEA it worked. Sorry, the alt 234 on the keypad didn’t work – Oh well one out of two ain’t bad – JDA

          • JDA: it should certainly work for you. Press and *hold* the Alt key down while typing in 234. Of course, if you’re on a Mac, I have no idea if that works, or even if a Mac even has an Alt key. 😉

        • Fundamnetal design ~”… using just the common definitions of words.”

          I agree, I would like it very much if it was that way… Yet, we have at the end of the poem a type of instruction; “hear me all and listen good” for are effort…
          I think this instruction [ for lack of a better term ] is about the poem itself and not so much about the “observation” in the field… [although, I also think that is part of the solve as well.]
          I’m not saying “change” a word… I’m saying listen to the words… don’t read the poem – hear it, line of thinking.

          Some examples;
          As I have gone vs. I’ve done it. In just these examples, and in my opinion, we have past and present tense and/or time involved. We have a possibility or a WhatIF to the word “i”. We have “It” as something needed to be understood. And we have, I’ve vs. I have, to think about why the difference spelling and sounds of the these words that seem to mean the same … but may not.

          Many folks are forcing a word that is key to fit their own ‘personal’ thoughts and ‘favorite’ location [ all guessing in my book ], And not so much attempting to read and hear the poem as the author might have intended, and worked on over a 15 year time span. We have folks saying there are more than 9 clues… even after fenn told Halo he “counted” the clues when he was finished.
          { 9 clues folks ~ 9 needed pieces of information that will take you “TO” the chest }

          IMO everything else within the poem was built in to give us the material to read and hear the poem… LOL… From this day forth I shall call them indicators, and not hints or clue, because they seem to indicate how to understand what is being stated; said, read, heard and listen to.

          Yep all that crap above are just opinions and thoughts, to have the confidence needed, to have certainty of the location and the path, beforehand.
          But I’ll throw this thought out in the attempt to understand whatever fenn might have meant for the word that is key…. we’re not going to find ‘it’ on a Sunday picnic or spring break… But we have been told we can solve the clues references at home… the question is… once on site, what do we do with those clues?

          FF~ …an X on a map…
          FF~ … marry clues to a place on a map…

          IMO if you want that certainty beforehand -?- “A” place might help with understanding NFBTFTW that might indicate something other than A stomping distance.

          Just food for thought folks…..

      • JDA,

        All is my opinion as I used “I believe” a couple of times.
        IMO I do restrict to only the common definitions of a word, IMO nothing else works as I have tried.

        Can you prove I am wrong? Its only your opinion.

        Just saying – CharlieM

      • No Charlie M I can not prove you right or wrong, as neither can you prove me right or wrong. It is just our individual opinions that we are correct.

        Indulgence has been hidden for seven years. People have tried everything in the book – simple definitions – archaic definitions. codes, ciphers, anagrams, coordinates – you name it – and yet she lays in wait for another winter.

        Am I close? I hope so, I believe so, I am sure that I am, but I say this empty-handed.

        Best of luck to you using your “simple” approach. Who knows you may succeed where many others have failed, using the “Simple” approach – JDA

      • Something else about this that has me wondering, if F. didn’t take the time to place double meanings in the poem, then why did it take him 15 years to write the thing.

        Think about that one. This is just my opinion, BUT if F. had written the poem to be straight forward and linear, knowing where he hid the treasure and knowing the place before he ever hid the treasure there, he could have written the thing in 15 minutes.

        • On the other hand, and thing also is just my opinion, although it runs completely counter to my previous statement; F. may have said it took him 15 years to write the poem just to throw people off as to how simple and straight forward it is.

          Although, IMO, that would be rather short sighted of him considering the fact that all it would take for someone to solve the poem is for them to interpret it in a straight forward and linear fashion, in such case the chase would have ended long ago, IMO(as if I’d com on here to voice someone else’s opion, lol).

          • Ken,
            Are your say you don’t a a double personality [ split personality ]… Um, that means you’re normal !… what the heck are you and your someone else voice doing here then??? lol

          • KeΩΩ – random thought here, but what if FF’s 15 years of work on the poem was all mental work and then he finally put it down on paper?

            In other words, he puttered around with the thoughts and after 15 years wrote it out (it wasn’t necessarily a grueling 15 year process)—lends some credence to a KISS reading.

        • **** KeΩΩ ωondered – “if F didn’t take the time to place double meanings in the poem, then why did it take him 15 years to write the thing.” ****

          As the famous saying goes, “a poem is never finished, only abandoned.”

          He didn’t hide the chest when he did because he’d finally perfected the poem (in fact he’s said just the opposite).

          He stopped playing with the poem when he did (abandoned it to the printing press) because he finally decided to hide the chest.


        • Kenn –

          I hope you see this as I am late to the party.

          I think originally the descriptions for each clue/location were just spelled out. Over time he convinced himself that the clues were too easy. He made them harder and harder until they lost all solubility.

          Like maybe he wrote the following over time. This is an idea by way of example and I have no knowledge of Fenn’s actual words.

          Begin at/where:
          Mammoth Hot Springs
          Massive Water Jets
          Huge Waters Jet
          Big Waters Spout
          Hot Waters Spouts
          Warm Water Spouts
          Warm Waters Fall
          Warm Waters Fade
          Warm Waters Pool
          Warm Waters Stop
          Warm Waters Halts

          The 15 year process is in continuously doing this for each clue and line and then making them fit for rhyme and meter and make sense when read.


    • In poetry, words are often used with a double inuendo, intendo, ermmm meaning, so IMO the idea that F. used double meanings in the stanzas is a bonyfied, straight up legitimate possibility.

      • Sure it’s a bonified possibility. I’d just think where do you stop with all the double (or quadruple) meanings? I mean, it quickly becomes trying a billion different combinations to figure out the correct meaning for each word. That sounds like a lottery or combination type deal and f seems to have put more focus on it taking a key or word that is key type of solve.

        • I wouldn’t go so as to try a billion combinations, that’s just too many.

        • For me, matching the words to the geographical features before you., WWWH – step one = a defined geographical feature in Wyoming.

          wwwh – step two might be at the base of a waterfall.
          wwwh – step 3 might be where a stream goes underground.
          wwwh step 4 might be at the base of a glacier that once existed 1.8 million years ago up until 11,400 years ago.
          The terrain or geographical features dictate what the specific words (clues) mean. It’s not nearly as difficult as you might imagine it to be. JDA

    • IMO, the addition of anti-torque pedals and a collective in a helicopter creates more confusion, BUT it makes the dang thing a lot easier to fly.

      Again, just my opinion.

  46. OZ10,

    You are on to him, indeed… why mention at all the 15 minutes and then the half hour, only to pass.

    He has given the search community enough.

    Everything is there in plain site .

    And Seeker your thoughts on Canyon are right on the money. Also think about the meaning of the word ‘Just’ likewise…

    Meek in the poem has two plain meanings:
    If have now pulled in below the home of brown and are in the right place. From here you have to go on foot into the wilderness and just because you have correctly identified the place of Brown and the Canyon down and the warm waters halt – the game is not over you will have to have correctly interpreted the next 3 lines…

    no place to be meek – meaning: assured!


    • GCG,

      The last line you said, “no place to be meek – meaning: assured!” makes no sense at all, it is like saying, its no place for the assured.

      Meek = those that are timid or afraid.

      I see no harm in keeping words simple and in context to the sentences in the poem. The key word could be Poem, Brown or blaze, etc. At this moment Blaze is the key word. The blaze uses up a lot of imagination more than anything else.

      All IMO

      • Charlie,

        I apologize for my unclear writing

        Being assured is the antonym of “being meek”

        The poem says:
        “From here it’s no place for the meek”

        Therefore, it is some place that requires you to be SURE from!

        The hunter must absolutely understand the next 3 lines and be SuRE of their course from there.

        “There is no other way to my knowlege. f.”


        • GCG…
          You said…

          The poem says:
          “From here it’s no place for the meek…
          It’s actually from there it’s no place for the meek.

          Maybe here nor there but who knows… 🙂

          • Sorry dropped the “t”

            There is key since it refers specifically to an exact place.

            A point or position given by the previous correct interpretation of past verses…

            Thanks for keeping me honest, Spallies.

        • Charlie,

          I didn’t get the Treasure Chest this Fall precisely because I hadn’t figured out those next 3 lines.

          On my first trip I assumed traversing the correct draw to its high water point would reveal the final blaze to me and my wife but I like others before had gotten the first couple clues correct but went right on by the actual spot because we didn’t understand the next few clues.

          When you put in below the home of Brown — it would be possible with a lot of time on your hands to scour the local until you find the blaze but I don’t have that luxury and in truth, I’m not interested in playing the game that way.

          On my second trip I tried my hardest to make the poem fit my original solve versus Re-examine what I’d missed and again failed to identify the correct route.

          My third trip was one of desperation since winter was on the Rockies and just as Forrest has said DON’T go in the winter … it was still possible but I had neither the time nor the budget!

          Believe it or not the window for the search is about 100 days a year but it can be done in one afternoon on the right day if you know exactly where you’re going…


          • It could be done in half that time, if you’re on the right path and you carry it all out at once. 42 lbs isn’t that heavy, I used to do 10 pullups with the same amount of weight on my back. Probably should start getting back in shape till spring.

          • Oh yeah?

            Next time you are out on a trail KeΩΩy carry 4 gallons of milk with you and let me know how far you get.
            FYI I’m letting you off the hook for the remaining gallon.

            Lug Lug Lug

        • GCG, I think this is a brilliant post (if the added t is added, lol). I think you got it precisely with your description of the meek line and what that conveys. It essentially means from there, it is the place for the confident searcher. It is the place basically puts an X on the map if one has followed the previous clues precisely.

          I think that specific ‘it’ has something to do with the blaze.

      • Hi CharlieM: just a wordsmithing correction:

        “Meek = those that are timid or afraid”

        Meek does not mean afraid or fearful (though many people seem to think it does). It means submissive or docile; tame; spiritless. Often due to provocation from others.

        • if we go to 1611 English (the King James Bible) we read this:

          Numbers 12:3:
          ” (Now the man Moses was very meek, above all the men which were upon the face of the earth.)”

          I think we need to be careful how we define “meek”. Forrest kind of likes Moses from what I remember. 🙂

          • Sparrow – Ok, then, Hmmmm,….no place for Moses. Somewhere he ain’t gonna be able to part the Red Sea. Uh,…Oh! Red Canyon and the water high along the Red-Black-Green Tea Trail #205! Where Forrest and Donnie started their Exodus from Civilization in the L&C story. And Moses was guarding the ascent up Forrest’s stairs to his office in that Scrapbook. That makes me think of Moses guiding the Israelites toward Heaven.

          • Sparrow – And if the meek will inherit the Earth, and from there it’s no place for the meek, then I suggest taking the water route. Because your effort will be worth the cold.

          • Lisa Cesari…. I like moses at the staircase = cadence = left, right, left, right, left notation = drawing nigh…. from point A (WWWH) to point B (TC location)

            all IMHO as my feeble brain sees IT

          • nigh, right, nigh, your military nigh. Your nigh, your right, now pick up the step your nigh, your right, your nigh???

            Doesn’t seem to work, imo.

        • Zap,

          What is wrong with the immediate thought as you said, (though many people seem to think it does)”

          The adjective is also, spineless, weak, tame, boneless, weak-kneed (informal), spiritless, un-resisting, wussy. All is in the dictionary also.

          • CharlieM: but not one of those words means afraid or fearful. If you look up meek in the OED, you won’t find fearful as a synonym.

          • Meek: quiet, gentle, and easily imposed on; submissive.
            “I used to call her Miss Mouse because she was so meek and mild”
            synonyms: submissive, yielding, obedient, compliant, tame, biddable, tractable, acquiescent, humble, deferential, timid, unprotesting, unresisting, like a lamb to the slaughter

            If this is the definition that F. had in mind when he wrote the poem, which IMO it is, then he’s telling us that we need to do something that goes against the grain here. I don’t know what, perhaps wander off the trail, or possibly disobey a posted sign or walk on the grass where it says keep off the grass. Probably some silly rule we have to break there, maybe, and this is just my opinion, maybe trespass on private property for a bit to get to a special location that can only be reached by doing so. Who knows, maybe F. owns the land and put up the sign himself, has it all under video surveillance and that’s how he knows the treasure is still there. Just my opinion.

          • Kenn;

            Have you ever thought about the possibility that the “No place for the meek” could relate to the name of the place? Rattlesnake canyon might be a place that the meek might not want to enter. Devil’s canyon etc. The place itself is not dangerous, just its name, and what it implies. Works for me. JDA

          • Now I asked it “Is Fenn’s hiding place Rattle Snake Canyon”
            It said “Ask again later”
            So I asked again, and it said “Most Likely”.

          • JDA – Yeah, like heading along Cabin Creek Trail for 2 miles, until you have to cross Cub Creek to reach my hidey spot. Uh, what kind of Cubs might those be, and what variety of Grizz might be protecting said Cubs? A Big Ol’ SOW! No place for the meek. Take the water route. Cross Cub Creek. There’s a Forrest’s Scrapbook about doing that.

        • Even in the biblical context, Moses is not being described as fearful. He is being described as gentle, mild, prepared to yield rather than cause trouble.

        • Hi Zap.

          For this phrase of the poem, I’ve gone with the “Sunday drive” vision – thinkning of FF knowing he is in a forest for adventure….why not make it sound adventurous or with an “Indiana Jones” flabor and flair. Enticing, huh?

          IMO – it does give a nod to the place you should be at, but it also seems to be a proverbial warning…..with no obvious explanation needed for the phrase. I think some have drawn upon that FF speaks in opposites. Not this line…..he seems to be telling it like it is, but if you do go in the “opposite” direction, it still has meaning in that if you are prepared, FF is telling us it is a safe place. The latter, is a place on “meek” – expecting the player to think that it is a ferocious place, but in truth, if you “don’t go anywhere an 80 year old man would go” – you be just place the word into the Safe category” and the chest is now reachable by “any age”… But maybe with help.

          Logic shows me the location is accessible to anyone and is in a safe zone, but you may need some assistance of you are not fit enough as an 80 year old outdoorsman.

          I also think that the “timid, afraid” description is correct, because it goes well with “brave the cold” & “in the wood” – same theme being used through the poem.

          One version I came up with was…..

          I need to go into a forest I never have been in before. I can’t be afraid to take this chalkenge, knowing it may be quite dangerous. I also know that if I am in the wood and can brave the cold in some way, then I may have a great chance at reviving the chest.

          The obvious point I am making is that I can make it into a story about myself, and still stay within the parameters of the poem.


          Cheers and good luck.

        • And then there is the Meek Horse.
          The horse that does whatever commanded regardless of circumstance.

  47. When defining confident/confidence, there is only one interpretation.
    Confidence= knowledge, training, and a good ego helps. That’s it. I take it as, knowing, no guessing, physical ability, and a little smugness wouldn’t hurt.

          • Hi KeΩΩ.

            My wife’s packs her Taurus .38, and I pack the bear spray and bells!


          • I pack my Springer 1911 .45 ACP loaded with Buffalo Bore, and a roll of toilet paper, cause you never know when you’ll need’em.

          • I always wear two pairs of underwear…just in case it soil one when confronted with a bear.

            Now that came in handy!!



            I’m only kidding….I’ve actually never came across a bear in my searches….so I really don’t know what I would do in the moment…..but…..I did come across some ‘wild cows” that were so scared of me…they took the low road. They knew better.


          • I’ve stood about 15′ from a 500 + lbs black bear trying to decide whether or not to put a broadhead through him. Should have shot him.

            That wasn’t a Griz though.

          • Tim,

            On my very first search this past Spring I ran across some very fresh bear scat and there was more than one pile in an area about 10’-15’ across. That really got my attention. Fortunately for me it was not heavily wooded and I had decent line of sight. The spray was handy and I think I went to sleep that night calling out “hey bear”.

            The next day driving to another location a short distance away I ran across momma bear and two cubs. That really got my attention but I never saw another bear after that brief encounter.


          • KeΩΩ,

            The TP part reminds me of a hilarious grizzly bear joke Bob Reeves of ReeveAlutian Air told many years ago to a bunch of F-4 fighter jocks at Elmendorf AFB. But if I did I think, Dal of Mr. Goofy, after they got off the floor would send a Mark-24, or a much higher yield weapon my way.

            If we ever meet and you’re interested just ask and I’ll be happy to tell you.


          • Dad; Honey hold my gun and be on the ready. Sally stay at Momma’s side with your hands over your ears in case she need to shoot, Billy get up on the ledge with the laser pointing flashlight so your mother has a on target shot, while I retrieve fenn’s trove… and If momma misses, yall run back to the truck… little Betty Lou will slow the griz down. That’s why she’s carrying the sandwiches fenn told us we needed.

            By the way. Are ya’ll having fun being out in the wiles of nature, exploring, and treasure hunt kids?

          • :o)

            No kids here.,..although I think I have persuaded my 29 yr old to join me next time.


            Funny stuff S.

          • Seeker,

            The sad thing is, things along those lines happen because there are those that don’t use common sense, or frankly, may not be educated (naive) in how to conduct themselves in the outdoors where Homo sapiens are NOT at the top of the food chain.

            So to be clear, and this is very premature considering the time of year, but please be careful about packing food. All bears have a super keen sense of smell, so that sandwich you made or bought at Safeway or wherever, leave it in the car. I carry nothing except water for that exact reason.

            I’d rather be hungry than stupid any day, and like Goofy says, if you’re gonna be stupid, then you’d better be tough. But I don’t think bears care if you are choice or prime.


          • Keeping on topic, my favorite, a double action raging bull loaded with 5 454 magnum loads makes a big pow. Just sayin

    • Charlie, I think the thing about confidence, as it pertains to the Chase, is that one doesn’t have to go with a definition of confidence.

      We are in the key word thread. A word that is key could be ‘confidence’. So confidence could be used as a key. One doesn’t need a definition when one has a/the key.

      • I just saw “confidence” being thrown around and wanted to let all those know what the definition of it was when used with the chase. It’s Fenn’s own words, from the book, TToTC, It’s at the start of the book if I remember, and he says, (going from memory), one gains confidence from knowledge, training, and a good ego helps.
        So, this is why I posted because one does have to go with the definition of confidence, supplied by F himself. Now what you interpret as knowledge, training, and a good ego, are all on you, the searcher. It is important, you cannot leave with confidence if there is “guessing” involved. Everyone should be looking at their solves and see if there is guessing involved, if so, then be truthful with yourself and know it’s wrong. You can’t just keep throwing out words and say they are key, he has never said there is a word that is needed, beyond all others, to solving the clues, poem, or the whole thing.
        Like you said, “A word that is key”, and like I’ve said, the word ‘that” does not fit, so he is referring to the ‘key”.
        If I said ‘A word that is design”, what do you think the word is that I’m talking about?
        Now if I said “A word that is needed”, then there are two words to consider, “that” and “needed”. In this respect, since ‘that’ does not fit, THEN, all the guessing in the world would at least have some small merit to a single word that would be the key or needed.
        A word that is key cannot be “confidence”, a word that is key is “key”.
        And like I said before, let the guessing continue, keep on keeping on. I happened to like Seeker’s word so far. If I knew how to spell, Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious, hey, what do you know, Google got it right. I’ve got happy feet…:)

        • I’m not sure what you are trying to say that a word that is key can’t be confidence.

          If one’s solve goes down the route of needing the definition of confidence the problem with that is figuring out if the level of confidence a searcher has is enough. Don’t think that can be accurately judged by anyone.

          On the other hand, a key to my front door works 100% of the time.

          • Forrest said we will go in confidence. That’s paraphrasing. Has nothing to do with a “key word”. So, to go in confidence, when you leave your house, to go get the treasure, you will have/used knowledge, you will have/used training, and a little ego. Knowledge is “knowing”. To know something is not a guess, more of a fact. So, I’m stating that if anyone is guessing, because I’ve been hung up on that all week, if anyone is guessing, they are wrong. It’s not a solve based on the definition of confidence I’m stating, we go in confidence, f’s words, what does that really mean.
            Throwing words out there with no bases of getting some magic word from the poem somehow, is guessing. From his comment, there are only two words possible, and that’s it. “that” and “key”. Anything else is a guess, and is WRONG.
            Lisa shows a link where it may be relevant with using the word “that”. I didn’t think “that” worked, but in this case, if she was to show us how the word “that” is important in the poem, or her solve somehow includes f’s hat(Lisa, for me “th” equals 22, 22 equals Forrest Fenn, so, you can call th at, or th, hat meaning f’s hat, you may not get it, but I could show a way for that to be true), then she could say that f’s ATF comment is in regards to the word “that”. The other word is “key”. Nothing special about the word, just that it’s possible that some of the clues or many searchers are in tight focus with a key. I believe his ATF comment is centered around a key. Because, I can show proof that there is a key, and it is in the poem.
            The word confidence is not in the poem, and the poem shows nothing in the way of it being some magical word. It cannot be a “key word”. There is no “key word”. Anybody who says there is, or throws out some word they like , is wrong. They are guessing.
            Your key opens the door 100% of the time unless it is bent. Trying to reason that there is some magical word, is bent, door will not open, unless the key lets you in. Depending on what time it is, I’m sure the “key” might have something to say about that.
            That’s is why when I posted, I used the word ‘needed”. It seems that is the definition most are giving. There is no defining in this case. If there was a word needed to solving the poem, f would have said needed. Here’s a bone:
            Line number 9 from right to left, what are the first 5 letters? A little of me is also in the box, the “key” maybe? Hints… He also answered an email one time where he was explaining something and said, the key is correct, (paraphrasing, don’t have it in front of me), regarding his answer. A word that is key is key. The key is….Forrest Fenn. This is an example. If someone can show there is a “key” in the poem and solve for it, then great. But the poem has to tell you what it is. Not, the word is in the poem so it’s a key, no, wrong interpretation of solving for a key. Same as, “I use this word to open the whole poem”, the poem does not say anywhere, “use this word to solve me.”
            No worries, the guessing game will still be going on, stronger than before.

          • Hi Charlie.

            I’ll continue to disagree.

            There is a word that is key. I found one….which means others will too.

            I guess I will tap into my ego, and say with confidence, if I didn’t have this word, I could not have validated the final search location.

            To each his own.

            I “guess” I will have to wait until next year to confirm my research completely.

            Good luck to you.

            We’ll have to see if I am just “guessing” or if I have unlocked the poem, huh?

          • Charlie, you are guessing when you interpret Forrest words of we will go in confidence (paraphrased) as having nothing to do with a “key word” (word that is key). This is a treasure hunt, do you actually believe f needs to tell us exactly every hidden detail of the clues/hints in the Chase before someone figures them out?

            It’s obvious a few figured out the hidden concept of ‘a word that is key’ in the poem before f posted on Feb, 4, 2014 that a few were in tight focus. Were they guessing or did they analyze the poem in a focused way and came up with a right thing. I think it’s the latter.

            We’ve seen it on this thread in the last couple of days that the line From there, it’s no place for the meek acts like a double negative. Most know what that does to a sentence when one reads a double negative. Most searchers realize they can’t be meek from that point on in their search. Why do they think that? Cause they are trying to follow that poem line precisely. A double negative drives one to do the actual action (in this case- don’t be meek but the opposite of meek). There you go, it can be easily explained that it could mean a magical word such as confidence is key for that line. What’s even more interesting is to focus on the lock in that line, imo.

          • I’m just stating what f has said. I just defined confidence as f had said. Focused, that is not solving a key word from the poem solving it. You’re saying searchers think this and that, and well, there you go. So confidence can be a key word. That’s not solving something from the poem. You’ve been here for a while. I think you know this. I think you should reread what you wrote.
            Anyway, with the way f’s comments seem to have double meanings or ways to interpret, then I will yield to the thought that there is a “key word”. I’ll say it’s possible, but if you really asked me, I’d laugh at the thought. “Key word” should not even be said. It’s “a word that is key”. F has never said “key word”. I will always think that “a word that is key” is key. Tough to say something else, except “that”, but have at it.
            If we are to just pull random words, then I’ll submit the 166 words of the poem being key to solving the poem. Even though it says “a word” meaning one, I say it’s all 166 words. That’s my “guess”.
            Tim, if you’ve found something then that’s great, I only wish you luck in this chase. We just disagree, that’s all.
            Let me soften this up. I may be coming off a little sarcastic and rude. I don’t mean to be to either one of you or all on this site. Don’t take these posts as anything else except conversation. I would prefer to here critiques from people I know have been here a while. I respect their views. So, with all that said,lol, you guys are wrong…..Have a great weekend fellas…

          • None taken charlie….I’m direct too…and you are absolutely correct….the possibilities are numerous…..
            …so we can voice them….without a possibility of revealing our own secrets….hehehe

            I know I do….but I want this thing found…so I voice many ideas that seem to work with landscape maps and topography.

            Do I have specialized knowledge of these things?….nope!….I’ve learned a lot just like others while playing the game.

            Oh…I knew in advance on how to read a map, or the many different symbols and their meanings, and other outdoorsy stuff….but really….I kept them in memory, just in case I ever needed to use it in an hour MG….That was basically all……I never ventured out as an adult…into an unknow RM place…..the forest is a meek place to me…..the unknown has many feare……to me….this can make me meek……if I am the TX redneck playing by FF’s rules, I too would probably be meek in stature and heart….probably because I too probably never went into an nknown place before.

            Hey, are you listening to FF and applying the rules to the game you are playing? That would answer many things in my opinion.
            Good luck.

        • charlie – How about,
          …a word th’hat is needed?

          The brown hat I wear so proudly was George’s. He wore it while his hunters killed 28 grizzlies out there just east of Yellowstone. He placed it on my head beside a campfire one night, and said, “Fits you like a glass fits water, so I want you to have it.”

          Go with confidence. I need th’hat!

  48. “IF you’ HAVE BEEN wise and found the blaze,”

    Clearly and in plain English this sentence or verse is in the past tense (very close though to past present tense if he had used “finding” versus “found” not that Forrest cares one iota about this).

    Therefore either or all of the following must have occurred at this point in the correct path to the treasure chest:

    1) The Blaze simply means the correct pass and path through the mountain canyons and creek.

    2) The Meaning of the Blaze or the Blaze itself is one of the previous hidden Clues.

    3) The treading of the correct path reveals to the AWARE or wise hunter something which clearly qualifies as a blaze – something that stands out.

    But FOUND is the key word here…


  49. Lugnutz,

    You previously stated that you see no evidence for a word that is key…

    If by evidence you are referring to the comments or ideas presented so far by people on the forums then perhaps you are correct however Forrest said there is a word which is key (key to solving something).

    He doesn’t define what the key does only he states the idea of a key word in reference to ‘only a few are in tight focus’ which was referencing the vast number of people putting a lot of brain power into the search.

    Anyway I would ask you and everyone else on this particular thread to make a list of the items which usually exist on or in a map key or legend.

    “Map Key or Legend. A map key or legend is included with a map to unlock it. It gives you the information needed for the map to make sense.”

    “Maps often use symbols or colors to represent things, and the map key explains what they mean.”

    Categorize them. See if one in particular might be applied – add this idea to your mind palace of Forrest Fenn artifacts!


    • GCG –

      What I do here is use logic. I am also kind of cynical. So nobody wants to listen to me.

      If you are claiming that Fenn was meaning Key Word when he said “Word that is Key”, then you must also consider the same in the many other instances where he uses the word Key. IMO soooooo much mental energy has been wasted on this. Why not spend the same energy figuring out what he means by what he said rather than by what we interpret his words to mean. Right? First look at what he actually said. Exhaust all the possibilities and then more on to what else he might have intended.

      Now as to your suggestion just let me say that this is super ambiguous. You can put whatever you like in a map legend. If you see something you think is relevant, please let me know. Then I can say “Hey that’s really something!” It’s pretty rare that I say that. It’s most likely that I will say “Sorry, doesn’t hold water”.


      • Have to go with Lug on this one GCG on the bulk of what he is saying. I do believe there is a “key”, in the poem, But, ” referencing the vast number of people putting a lot of brain power into the search.” is your interpretation of that statement. He could also be referencing the “clues” are the ones that are in tight focus. Also, ” he states the idea of a key word”, is your interpretation. F has never said that to my knowledge.

        “Forrest said there is a word which is key (key to solving something).” This I agree with.
        Like Lug said, if there was a key word, then all that f has used would need to be considered fore-front.

        If there is a key, it will be in the poem. Since the start of this whole thing, all we needed was the poem, and if there is a key, (which is important), than it will be in the poem. Coming up with certain words or saying it’s found outside the poem is just guessing by the masses, holds no weight, and in it’s simplest, just wrong.
        If anything GCG, you did get Lug to say “love”, haven’t seen that one yet. There is still hope for the cynical…

        • Charlie & Lug,

          All I meant by the above comment is; Forrest said there is a word that is key; therefore there is a word (in the poem) that most people aren’t fully grasping its meaning or its significance.

          Lug, I happen to agree with you that revealing my WWWH or even more details probably wouldn’t change most peoples minds however given the large number of people searching for the treasure and how compelling the nature of my solve is – regardless of whether I am correct or not – this place would be overrun with the searchers who would surely descend like flies upon the place…

          But I will reveal the nature or mystery of the circle and why Forrest is so adamant that if you don’t have WWWH you don’t have anything. And more specifically why you can’t begin in the middle of the poem, spending so much time trying to figure out what is meant by the blaze.

          Remember Forrest says the 9 clues are successive and if followed in order will lead to the treasure. Also in the latest Wikipedia entry he has said; no one has given him all the clues in the right order…

          This is because the clues are not just successive but progressive meaning they build on each other. The word which is key unlocks the step necessary to determine the most important aspect of the blaze.

          The Blaze is the key target.

          Lug, I must say though, I view you as the Metaplayer on Dal’s site but that’s OK I’m wise to it…

          So what type of evidence do you want Lug short of me giving you my solve?

          This site can be like the Treasure of the Fenn Express:
          Alsetenash, I see as the Professor.
          Zap, as the Technician
          Jeremy, as the Programmer
          Sparrow, ????
          Tim, ????
          Lisa, ????
          Dal, the Conductor
          Forrest is perhaps the Narrator

          Just having fun here. Merry Christmas to the gang and Happy Holidays.


          • Oh and riding on the Express, I didn’t mean to leave anyone out.

            How would you characterize yourself in the search for the word which is key to this mystery?


          • I’m driving my truck…and Covert… you couldn’t have missed it. That train never leaves the yard….

          • I would say I’m the whisperer because I talk and no one hears me. Ha, such is life!
            Merry Christmas to you, too!

          • Jeannie, did you say something? 🙂 Just teasing, I hear you. A big hug and best wishes for you and your family through Christmas, the new year and the chase.

            The same goes for all searchers out there.

            My Santa wish list this year:

            1. The word that is key (not to be confused with a keyword please, cause that is not what ff said and if you can’t tell the difference don’t bother)

          • GCG,

            Merry Christmas to you too. If I was on that train, I imagine that I will be the one looking so far ahead that I wouldn’t be able to see what’s in front of me.

            Seriously though, I can see you have put a lot of thought on the poem and thanks again for sharing your ideas.

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