Odds n Ends About Fenn’s Treasure Hunt…Part Fifty Five


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1,137 thoughts on “Odds n Ends About Fenn’s Treasure Hunt…Part Fifty Five

  1. The search area is crowding up.
    Collected Works sold over 1,600 TTOTC books in May…
    That’s over 50 books a day in the merry month of May.
    That’s good money for Forrest’s cancer fund…

    And over 6,000 new books are on their way to the bookstore now…

    • Hi DaL somebody better sell a lot of books before the end June I think the TC will be found this June. JMHO

      • Clint: it won’t be. Book sales should continue strong through the entire summer.

        • Hi Zaphod will my thinking is if TC is found in June who is going to pay money for books.

        • Clint: what you have to ask yourself is why YOU think it will be found this month. Is it only because of Forrest’s “gut feeling”?

          • Zap read reply down below Charlie twice sorry it jump to there for some reason.

      • Clint what makes you so sure of your thinking it will be found in June. And who do you think will recover it? I have a hunch…

          • Travis: simple — past performance. The Chase has been going for over 90 months. Let’s say pessimistically that only 6 months out of the year (May-October) is the chest realistically retrievable. That would mean this month is the 44th that it reasonably could have been found. Had we known in 2010 that the chest would be found some time before July 2018, then absent any other information we could have mathematically computed that our odds of picking the correct month would be less than 2.3%.

            Now, today in June 2018 we do have the advantage of knowing (or at least strongly suspecting) the chest was NOT found in the prior 43 “searchable” months, so this inflates the chances that it will be found this month. The problem is, we don’t know that the chest will be found prior to July 2018.

            In the former statistical argument, it was as if we had a bag containing 43 white marbles and 1 golden marble. If we’ve randomly pulled 43 consecutive white marbles, then it is a certainty that the 44th will be gold.

            But the reality is that we don’t know how many white marbles are in the bag. It could be hundreds or even thousands.

          • I hope you’re right because I’m out of shape and don’t really want to go hiking to get it, but IMO the chest is only retrievable from about August to October due to it’s location.

          • GCG will test his theory soon. It will be found in Wyoming by the end of summer imo.

            Btw – when did Forrest first say he had a gut feeling? Does anyone know the date?

          • Thanks Charlie. It has always made me wonder what he knows or doesn’t.

          • morecowbell,

            IMO, someone must have relayed something to F in order for him to say that.

          • I tend to agree with you Charlie. I guess all good thing must come to an end eventually.

        • Travis I will answer, the person that is BRAVE and in the WOOD will find it ,as for who that is still up for grabs.

  2. “I am so thrilled and excited to be part of the Chase. My personal secretary told me today that I had purchased nearly 1600 books this May, and I don’t even remember doing so! Each of the books have to do with the Treasure in some way, and curiously, they all appear to have the same title.

    Sometimes I get a bit carried away with all of the excitement. I just wanted to drop in and ask if anyone had found the chest yet? And if not, why not? I think personally you are all so very lazy, but who am I to judge? I suppose I will just have to go over there and retrieve that bloody chest myself. You Americans are all talk and no action. Oh I do hope someone from these blessed British Isles finds it, and not one of you lazy Yanks for goodness sake. Cheers.”

    –Queen Elizabeth

  3. Sparrow, or should I start calling you Queen Elizabeth, or should I start calling you Her Majesty.

    Or maybe I should start calling you Bird, cos your maybe going to fly off with the T.C

    You make me laugh.

    Take care and stay safe.

    Ronnie the Scot

  4. I have thought since my first reading of TTOTC, that “I” in the poem is water. This is based upon the story of Looking for Lewis & Clark. FF and Donnie were lost in the wilderness. They decided to follow a stream, which got narrower and narrower and the sides got taller and taller until nothing could get through but water.

    So, I decided that the place where only water could go is a cloud. That fits in my mind because of the story of River Bathing Is Best. Water in a cloud moves “upstream” because warm air rises. But, when the moist droplets of water get heavy, they drop down in the form of precipitation and become cooler as they fall. So for a long time, I have been working on a solution that involves a place with a cloud name. “Heavy loads and water high” could describe a cloud.

    Another place that nothing can get through but water is rock! I believe this poem is sending us to a place where we will find a natural Forest Fen adjacent to a rock formation. The formation would have to be an unconformity, in which older rock sits atop younger rock.

    Finally I think I understand the first line of the poem.

    “As I have gone alone in there”. As I said, I have been looking for a place only water can go, but now I think there is a bit more to it. FF has told us that the poem written in plain English, but he has often hinted that we should know all of the definitions of the words we use. We assume he is saying one thing when in fact he is saying something else because he has applied a true, but alternate meaning of the word as it is used in the sentence.

    “As I have gone alone in there” = As (meaning during which time) I (water) have gone (water is no longer in this place) in there

    “And with my treasures bold” The action of water in the creation of rock formations can leave an area “bowled” like a basin as well as creating bolders) These actions leave behind/expose natural resources such as minerals. They also leave behind fossil remains which are earths treasures and natural resources.

    “I can keep my secrets where” I can (am able) keep (hold onto my secrets), where (wear away) Basically the secrets of the history of the RM are hinted at as rock layers wear away exposing the underlying rock.

    “And hint of riches old and new” A hint is to tell or show part of something but not the entire thing. This line can be saying “I” (water) can keep (leave in safe place inside rock) my secrets (something partially hidden/fossils, gems, minerals, etc) old and new (Rocky Mtns are actually the second set of mountains that has been raised up in that area, worn away and then raised up again. Todays current RM are relatively “new” compared to the more ancient RM (old). Evidences of both are left behind in the rock record that tells the story of the RM)

    Begin it where warm waters halt= IMO location name having to do with a cloud as well as rock formation where ancient rock (Craton) is exposed and layed atop younger rock. The water “halts” at this type of rock because it is non-permeable.

    “And take it in the canyon down” I believe we are not going a great distance. Somewhere I”ve seen a quote from FF saying that he put one foot down and then the other foot on top of it and so on until he got to the end of the clues. Hmmm. I know that everyone is picturing him pacing off the area. But, what if he is talking about rock layers instead of walking distance. What if he is saying one rock layer is deposited on top of another. Rock layer upon layer could be described as “too far to walk” In other words, you can walk along and view the rock layers but you can’t walk through history to be in all of those times and places. You can only look at the evidence left behind in the rock story of the RM

    I’ve believed from the beginning that the “blaze” is in the rock layers. I even think I know which rock layer it is.

    Remember the quote in which FF said that sooner or later we all become the remnants of history or an asterisk in a book that was never written. Well, the book that tells the story of the RM is the rock layers that are exposed there. That kind of a blaze cannot easily be destroyed or hidden.

    All this is IMO. Prevoius to now I didn’t feel that I understood the first stanza, but I think I do now and it fits with what I believe the rest of the poem says.

    • Good thinking FB. I have a different view of I and the first stanza but this is the kind of thinking that will lead a searcher in the right direction IMO.

    • “I” = water

      The poem being dictated by water.

      Makes sense, lots of sense.

      Hey Sandy!

      You hear? You listen? The water?

      • Rainbow connection- My search is not in Sinks State Park. But, I would love to visit that place.

        • Me too! I really want to see Sinks “Canyon” and the Brown trout there…
          So many things in that area fit within the words of the poem…
          Flutterby what is the Rainbow Connection?

          • Spallies- I have no rainbow connection. I was responding to someone named Rainbow connection. No rainbow in my solve.

          • Ha ha I see that now… Gosh I was hoping maybe you had found the rainbow… 🙂

          • Speaking of Rainbows… If you did find the end of Forrests rainbow do you think you will also find contentment?

  5. I wrote a piece and sent it to Dal the other day about the various Searcher types and now I can’ t stop labeling the comments in my head. Hopefully it gets put up soon soon so I’m not the only one.

    • I saw the original…and then the next….and then the other. Interesting where that all expanded in certain venues…

  6. JDA,

    Hey JDA, I just was just trying to catch up a little on the blog and I see you went searching again, and now your back but still confident in you area. Well since your regrouping and going more in the direction to “simplify” your area maybe you should kind of keep this in the back of your mind, a reply Forrest made in Forrest Gets Mail.

    “What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the “water high” when I am through with it?”

    To me Forrest is stating that a bike can be ridden at least part way or maybe even up to “water high” – (I don’t believe to this point but maybe to a couple of clues back to the 500′ point) to where he had plan to spend his final hours with indulgence, and dare everyone to come find him.

    So JDA, if your solve of the poem clues doesn’t let you consider that a bike can be ridden at some point between clue solves, and maybe even pushed to water high – (I believe this), then you might want to consider another area. Of course this is just food for thought.

    Keep on keeping on,

    • I agree Bur.

      With my newest solve, I can ride my bike from where I now park to a place close to my – And yes, it could be pushed to my WH.

      Who knows – We just might be looking at the same area. I better be careful, and hurry up, or you just might beat me to it. Best of luck to you Bur, and thanks for the suggestion – TRY and STAY SAFE – JDA

      • JDA,

        No worries about being in the same area. I’m in another state.
        Yea, I thinks others searching might have either never read that reply or over looked it when putting their final solve together. Also the other statement about Forrest making two trips, to where he hid the treasure chest, in one afternoon. I see some searchers really trudging across the tundra mile after mile and with some of those distances there is no way there can be two trips made in a afternoon, especially for a 79 or 80 yr old Fenn.

        Good luck with your new area,

        • Well, in a way I am sorry that we are not in the same area, because you have some good ideas. Maybe our areas look the same – Who knows?

          I agree, many searchers seem to be ignoring Forrest’s statement about making two trips in one afternoon, and the statement about the bike. I see these as important “hints”.

          Again, Bur, Good luck in your search – JDA

          • JDA,

            I wondered this past week if FF may have used a horse in his hiding….would change a lot of the calculations we make.


          • TF

            Here is the link: /dalneitzel.com/2012/10/02/forrest-gets-mail/ Item #3 – JDA

          • So, really, a trail is involved at the end of the resolution.

            “Thanks for the input but I think you should mobilize your club and hit the trail searching for the wondrous treasure.”

            = )

          • McB…*hit the trail* does not necessarily mean *literally* in most uses in English. I could be telling someone about my plans to go canoeing or golfing, or going to dinner….then say * I guess I better hit the trail*. See ya’

          • Sean;

            Why two trips if a horse is used. Forrest is pretty light – add 42 pounds, and you are still not above what a horse can carry – Just a thought – JDA

          • JDA, thank you for the link. In an effort to help other
            searchers (including you), here are my thoughts and analysis of FF’s response, which I have cut & pasted, then enclosed in brackets, below:

            (Forrest responds-)

            [ I am a very simple person and you want me to have copious meetings with lawyers, preachers, undertakers and your family. What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the “water high” when I am through with it? You don’t know how many man hours I have spent on that subject. Thanks for the input but I think you should mobilize your club and hit the trail searching for the wondrous treasure. Besides, I’ll probably get hit by a train. When you find the treasure please come sell me the great turquoise and silver bracelet that is in the chest. I wish now that I had kept it. f ]

            When FF asked “What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the “water high” when
            I am through with it?” he was not making a STATEMENT; a question is NOT a statement, but can
            mislead or fool people.

            FF did continue, STATING: “You don’t know how many man hours I have spent on that subject.” I am willing to
            concede that THAT statement by FF is possibly a true one. But it doesn’t provide much information about anything useful to a searcher. It’s about like saying that FF may have spent no time at all, or very little time on the subject. Let’s now look at what the subject is . . .
            It might be “What is wrong with me . . . through with it?”
            . . . or, perhaps, the subject may have been his bike (although technically, this would have indicated sloppy thinking or sloppy communication — and I don’t think that FF would be so sloppy about communication, when discussing this treasure hunt). The subject may have been — and I think technically, it’s likely — merely the thing he was referring to when he said “it” (this would
            be “water high”).
            In either case, FF did not, in his bracketed response, STATE that he rode his bike out there. I think his bracketed response was meant to mislead, and that it succeeded very well.

            The above is all part of my opinion. I hope you enjoy every expensive vacation you ever take.

          • TF;

            What’s wrong with me saying that you are making it more complex than it needs to be? Have I just asked a question? Or, have I made a statement? Or both?

            I think that it is both. By asking a que3wstion, I have made a statement that is clear and concise.

            I think that Forrest did the same. JMO – JDA

          • Eric D,

            IMO, I think that the blaze is some type of geological feature too but it may not be native to the area. F says it will stand out so it has to be different in some way… either a different type of rock or marked in some way.

            F wanted the chase to last a long time so I doubt that he would consider using wood or trees as part of the solution. He put too much time and effort into it for it to be wiped out in a year or two

            Just my opinion


        • JDA, it could have required two trips if a horse was used because stock is not allowed on all trails. He would have had to tie up his horse and then make two trips from the horse to the TC.

          • https://www.nps.gov/yell/planyourvisit/stock-packing-regulations.htm

            Trails Not Suitable For Stock
            Thermal Areas, Artist Point, Avalanche Peak Trail, Beaver Ponds Trail,, Canyon Trails, Harlequin Lake Trail, Osprey Falls Trail, Monument Geyser Basin, Seven Mile Hole Trail, Sheepeater Trail, Shoshone Geyser Basin, Storm Point Trails, Tower Falls Trail, Trout Lake Trail, Upper Terraces, West Thumb Overlook, Wraith Falls Trail.

          • Well, I guess that there is an exception to everything – Good thinking – I think – JDA

          • Here’s a thought about the 2 trips from the car…

            F said he made 2 trips but did he say what he was carrying each time? Maybe one trip was the treasure… and maybe the second trip was the blaze. We know that the blaze will stand out. How better to do that than to bring a foreign object to the location? Maybe he marked the blaze and brought it in by himself on horseback?

            Remember in the movie The Shawshank Redemption when Morgan Freeman’s character had to find the black volcanic glass along the stone wall? That black glass was not natural to the area and must have been brought there.

            Maybe F used a horse to take the blaze in himself and he knows it cannot be removed without a horse… it’s not impossible but it’s not feasible.

            Just random thinking… all IMO, etc….


          • Note that pack animals are not allowed on canyon trails. If you’re in the canyon down you’re going to be on foot after riding out there.

          • TimM I think the blaze is a geographical feature, but I have wondered if there might be a piece of driftwood artwork though that may not hold up to fire.

          • Tim,

            I think the blaze is native to the area, but if my solve is correct it is different from other surrounding objects in some way and it does stand out, though you might not immediately notice its difference right away without thinking about it some. Someone with just the poem and a map might not notice how it’s stands out from other features or it’s importance right away either and the book is probably helpful. I was driving to work when it hit me like a lightbulb and then realized at least two hints in the book surrounding it were actually hints.

            How many teachers do you remember from your childhood that made an impression on you? What subject did they teach? How many would be worth noting in your memoir?

    • Bur,

      IMO, you are correct, but are applying it incorrectly. Think route. NFBTFTW

  7. I’m happy to hear that the bookstore is selling so many books, because you can’t find the treasure without the book.
    IMO of course. ..

  8. Well, I head out tomorrow for my first search this year though it won’t start until Monday. Unfortunately, I’m taking along a groin pull with me. Very unpleasant except when sitting still.

    I don’t know where it came from or what may have caused it, but the timing could not have been worse. I’m not letting it slow me down in my search, even though it will slow me down if that makes sense.

    But I sure know the cure for the pain.


    • Good Luck to you Pinatubo. Take care of that groin pull Charlie – Don’t stress it TOO much. Sorry that it will slow you down. Who knows, maybe slowing down will enable you to see something you need to see. – JDA

      • Thanks Aaron. Look for the guy walking with a gimp in his right leg. And i’ll keep an eye out for you two.

        By the way, one of my votes went to your hat.

        And good luck to you too.


  9. Thank you JDA. It’s the off-trail part that concerns me a little. Making the pull worse that is, with a misstep or slipping on a rock. Fortunately, the terrain where I’m going is not bad looking based on GE and my research.

    Take care………Pinatubocharlie

    • Pinatubocharlie,

      Good luck to you on your search, you might just beat JDA to the T.C

      Take care and stay safe

      Ronnie the Scot

      • Thank you much Ronnie and I hope you’re right.

        My approach (on the ground) to this solution is unique and if my answer to what the poem is all about is correct, I think most of the community will say “of course, that makes a lot of sense”.

        And the answer to one line in the poem in particular helped me understand its purpose, or at least I think so.

        Take care………Pinatubocharlie

      • Thank you KK. It’s getting better slowly, but tomorrow afternoon it all starts regardless. I’ve got a beautiful handmade walking stick my sister-in-law loaned me to help.

        Take care………Pinatubocharlie

  10. Thanks for your post on the previous Odds and Ends JDA. I will watch out for the Grizz. I’ll have my bear spray ready.

  11. Pinatubocharlie on May 28, 2018 at 3:44 pm said:

    Different subject. That special something it the chest. I’m starting to think it could be the title to his refurbished ‘35 Plymouth. After all, it was as very precious to him and Peggy, so it could be considered like gold in a way. Also, he did say something like “she’d be happy” in the context of the chest being found if memory serves. I tried finding it on tarryscant, but no luck.

    So I’m curious if you or anyone here at HoD have any thoughts on this “thought” that popped into my head the other day?

    Take care………Pinatubocharlie


    A car lover’s dream come true! But I really don’t expect that, especially knowing the chase could last a thousand years…

    In my opinion, of course,

    • A chapter in OUAW talked about selling the Bullet, and Forrest did not seem too sad about it, so I doubt that he kept a radio know or something like that. JMO – – But your thinkin’ – JDA

      • Yeah, I’m aware of that JDA, but did he really? I have a feeling he may be fibbing a little bit. Or to say it a different way, maybe that story is part of the 15% fiction he’s told us about.

        And frankly, I have a strong suspicion the new Bullet could actually be the old Bullet. Riches new and old?

        SWWOT, I do love the old cars a lot. In fact I like old things in general. Technology is great, but “they” don’t make things like they used to.


        • Poor Forrest! The poor man can not even tell a story about selling an old car without being accused if stretching the truth. Darn. Why would he “Fib” about selling an old car? To what advantage? Perplexes the mind – JDA

          • JDA,

            I mean no disrespect to Forrest in making that statement, and please trust me when I say I have my reasons that I simply cannot share at this time.

            The Plymouth itself is not critical to my solve, but it, and the 15% certainly play a role (plus one more real important big hint that’s not in the poem) when it comes to finding the final clue ………I hope.

            I hear that restaurant serving crow has a huge line this time of year. Do they take reservations?


          • Sorry…Crow-A-Lot Fine Dining has been fully booked through the month of August into September. Late season dining is usually very busy as well…so please remember to call ahead. Bon appetite!

          • Well, let’s hope that you do not have to eat crow. I just had some, and I guarantee you, no matter how good the chef – It still tastes lousy – Yuck – JDA

          • I never claim to know anything so ‘humble’, ‘crow’, ‘words’, and ‘hat’ will never be on my menu. I was bursting at the seams to gloat before my last trip and now I am glad I didn’t.
            Fenn’s hunt requires patience and tenacity. It is very important to dissect and analyze each search trip to set the groundwork for the next one. I can’t wait to get back out there!

          • randawg…do you still like *your* search area? Is it the same one since you began the Chase? Where do you think things went wrong? 1st clue? 3rd clue? Are you going back this year?

          • Same place Ken. You can’t go wrong in the Rockies. I’ll be going back soon.


  12. Doesn’t matter what solve I come up with, I cannot answer the question of whether or not a tired 80-90 year old could do it….twice.

    My father is 76 and he couldn’t carry a 40lb box from the house to the car, much less hike ‘a few miles’ tired with 20 or 40…twice. Even less so at high altitudes.

    So I figure that any solve that doesn’t involve Fenn opening a car door and pushing the box out is invalid.

    In fact, my main solve involves a simple 3ish mile hike – which is a reasonable distance and could qualify as a ‘few miles’ but likely fails the old man test.

    Ultimately, this ruins the poem and the hunt – a non-quantifiable variant that makes people ask a question they cannot possibly answer and which GREATLY limits all potential solutions.

    Might be easier to ignore the poem and simply find places in the Rockies above 5k feet that an 80 year old could traverse twice with that weight.

    Forrest needs to stop saying that all you need is the poem and a map or even imagination. Its not valid because every clue has to be filtered through this age-factor prism.

    Having to consider this unknown destroys the chase imho. It destroyed my chase.

    Of course, I could be missing something so I post it here. Thanks all.

    • phelix, you are right, that is a filter that must, at least, be able to stand up to any 80 year old man. But, we have to take into account that f is rich and resourceful. Plus, with his ATF about people walking by the chest doesn’t mean f walked. He may have followed all the clues, but in an other way besides walking. With him saying we will be walking, this could be an area that does not allow vehicles, but f may have had a way around that. It’s a stretch, but it’s what must be considered.
      You know those electric scooter things kids have? Well, those things have attachments where you can sit and ride them. Pretty fast and far. I’m not saying this is what he did, but, he is resourceful, so you cannot leave out any distance really. Even though an 80 year old man, or maybe a 60 year old man, would have trouble making a walk, f may have used a different mode of travel that we will not be able to use. So, your solve with just 3 miles may be possible, just sucks you have to walk it, because f may not have. In fact, the filter of needing to be secret would seem to mean that the chest is secluded, not near people, and out in the boonies. My walk is five miles one way, so don’t feel like yours is out of the question. If your solve for the poem says three miles, then it’s three miles. He has said not to underestimate him, best not to use the 80 year old man filter. It’s just not in a spot that an 80 year old man cannot get to, like a cliff side, or something just as dangerous.
      It is okay to say what he says about the clues being followed, it’s what we will end up doing. It’s just our way, while being the same as f’s, may need to be walked, while his was not. Just look at the story about his brother Skippy and the washing machine. Why tell us that story? What does that story reference? The story about the bug zapper. Same questions. If Skippy is so resourceful, then maybe his brother is just as much resourceful. There is a basis, a reason, for all his stories. With so many, I wouldn’t filter too much just because I think that the average person may have trouble doing something. I would go by the poem solve and what it told me. And, when I fail, then back to the poem to see where, and adjust.
      If you want to filter, just ask yourself how many rich 80 year old men do this chase thing? One out of all possible? That person could not be considered your average 80 year old. But I hear what you’re saying, the physical aspect must be considered, I agree. I just don’t want to let go of a solve because I’ve filtered it with knowledge of what the average can or cannot do.

      • One more detail:

        FF was not an 80-year-old man who worked his entire life on a table and chair.

        FF was a mountain man, ex-military-trained survivalist, adventure lover.

        For him to walk 4 or 5 miles on a trail during a long summer afternoon would not be such a big challenge.

        “Fox in the fur of the dog.”

      • McB and charlie: I will counter with two quotes from Forrest:

        “A polite-like email from Kristie, who admits to being a desk person, prompts me to say that if you are walking long distances in search of the treasure, you’re walking too far. f”

        “If you can’t make two trips from your car to your solve in several hours, then don’t go. Don’t search anywhere an 80-year-old man could not carry a heavy backpack.”

        Combine these two: a mostly sedentary searcher (i.e. a regular Joe or Jane, not a triathlete) who cannot complete two round trips — at altitude — from their car to where they think the chest is in several hours has a bad solution. Period. 5 miles one way is WAY, WAY too far. No flat-lander is going to hike 20 miles in the mountains in several hours — even without the burden of 20+ pounds on their back for half that journey. That’s just absurd. 3 miles one-way is equally absurd. It doesn’t matter what you think Forrest could do — he’s telling Kristie (and us) right here that what matters is what the *average* person can do. The average person is out of shape, overweight, and unaccustomed to the thinner air above 5,000 feet.

        • Four hikes of just over 1 mile = 4 or 5 miles.

          That’s what I meant = 4 or 5 miles during a summer afternoon.

          : )

        • Thanks alot, don’t disagree. Didn’t Forrest say it was a ‘few miles’?

          That means more than one mile…but less than 3??

          Answer then is a 2 mile hike? So three is absurd but two is not?

          What distance is not absurd is my question IF he said it was a ‘few miles.’ Can’t be one mile so….Just asking thoughts

          • Why does a few have to mean between 1 and 3?

            If he walked/hiked 1/2 mile 4 times = 2 miles – That’s a few
            If he walked/hiked 1/4 mile 4 times = 1 mile – thjat’s a few right? etc.

            Few can mean less than many. What is many?
            Only 3? Why not 5? etc. Sure logic says that he didn’t walk/hike 5 x 4 miles – or 20, but is 16 “too far to walk”? What you state is just your opinion, and NOT FACT – please state so next time OK? JDA

          • phelix,

            This idea, about how far FF has walk, is very subjective.

            If it was on a bad trail, of course he walked less.

            But if it was on a good trail, he can walked more.

            Of horse, bicycle, motorcycle, canoe, much more. But why two trips then?

            It all depends on the conditions of the stretch he walked.

            Another important detail:

            FF may not have done the same path we will do following the clues.

            He may have written the way he saw the clue, but we may see not how FF see.

            To get from one point to another in the middle of the forest, two people can use totally different paths.

            Just consider: FF walking come here, or not?

          • McB;

            Please read this quote:

            Question posted 6/20/2014:
            I have a question for Mr. Fenn:
            When you hid your treasures, did you take the same path that is described in the poem, or were you able to skip some of the steps because of your familiarity with the area?
            Thank you Curtis
            The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowlege.f

            To me, this says Forrest followed the same path as he laid out in the poem clues – JMO – JDA

          • JDA,

            FF really said that.

            What I mean is:

            The point of view, related to something in the middle of a gigantic forest, changes from one person to another.

            For a person a glass, half with water, is half full, for another person is half empty. And both are right.

            For a person standing in the middle of a slope, the street may be rising or falling. And both interpretations will be correct.

            We’re in the middle of a hunt. So some things to some are right, while to others it is wrong.

            If the shortest path to your “blaze” includes a steep climb, then “blaze” can’t is up there? Is there not a smoother path to your “blaze”? FF “would” this way there?

            Here comes the logic of your research area.

            That’s why I said to Phelix: “FF walking come here, or not?” Logic.

            Use logic in “your” search area

            Even if it does not work in others, it does not mean it does not work in yours.

          • Phelix: he didn’t say he walked a few miles. He said he walked LESS than a few miles. ZERO is less than a few miles. Forrest has placed no limit on how little he walked, only how far he might have.

          • Zap…very clear thinking. I believe the same applies to the word “several”…as in “several hours”. Several hours can also mean *more than one*.
            As a general *safety* tip I believe fenn was trying to reel some of the folks back into reality.

          • Thanks, Ken. I agree with you that I think that Forrest’s primary focus was one of safety. People were traversing absurd distances to get to their spots, and Forrest recognized the increased danger that that entailed, both from wildlife and from the elements. If you are 4 or 5 miles from your car, and you have an accident or incident of some sort, you are in a world of trouble.

            Forrest wants people to enjoy the great outdoors; he doesn’t want them to be reckless about it. I think his whole point to these time and distance restrictions was as a counter to some of the crazy things folks have done over the last 7 years.

        • Zap

          Ok, but YOU still believe the first leg is driving.

          May I presume you drive more than 3 miles from where warm waters halt?

          • JDA

            “Few” is defined and “more than one but not many”. Responder said 3 was absurd so I took that put it between one and three.

            If it was 2 miles TOTAL, it would take less than an hour and he has said ‘an afternoon’ and ‘several hours.’ ‘Several’ is defined as more than two.

            Average hiking speed if accounting for both down and up elevations is roughly 3 mph. Sure he has a load to carry but that is one way for each trip.

            Nothing I or anyone else says here is really “fact”, I’m trying ascertain what is and isn’t even possible.

            And whether something is “fact” or not is not for you to decide anyway.

            Disclaimer: IMHO

          • Hi Lugnutz: Forrest never said he walked all the clues. Therefore, the distance from WWWH to where he did start walking is not relevant. It could be a mile, or a thousands miles.

          • Few or many.

            Only 7 lashes on the back per week = few or many?

            Only 7 meals per week = few or many?

            For a Maverick dedicated and accustomed to the forest 7 miles in a long afternoon of summer= few or many?

            That is the question.

            For me, few.

          • Zap ~ ‘Forrest never said he walked all the clues. Therefore, the distance from WWWH to where he did start walking is not relevant. It could be a mile, or a thousands miles.’

            To that; fenn as only stated he “walked” when he hid the chest, tell us we should be able to “walk” several hours to our solve ‘twice’

            The comment your talking about was unprovoked from any single inquiry, and even stated; “To answer some questions and save others from being asked,…”
            IF he didn’t follow all the clues physically, walking.. what would have been the point in make that comment-?- as to save others from being asked?

            These types of questions have been asked for years… searchers have pondered both side of the idea; he did or he didn’t need to… I would make no sense for him to make a broad statement when he knew he has been asked this question maybe a hundred times.
            Not unlike what time of year did he hide the chest… now we have that answered as well. Summer.

            Are you going to say Summer just means warmer weather and not something more specific as to months Summer fall in?

          • He said he “walked less than a few miles” and when asked whether he took another mode of transportation he dodged the question with his prevaricate and quibble answer. I believe he did walk less than a few miles to hide the treasure and he made two trips after leaving the car, but his mode of transportation is featured in Scrapbook Six.

          • Ah, Charlie, here we go again. You are hung up on the NF,BTFTW line and are convinced you need to walk absurd distances because of your faulty interpretation, even when the ATF comments are crystal clear that anyone walking more than 3 miles from their car should be breaking out the Canasta deck.

            “To define what he is saying on your own predetermined definitions of “too far to walk”, tends to incorporate your solve and not f’s interpretation.”

            Listen to yourself. I’m not talking about my solution at all; I have no pre-conceived notions of the distance. But I can read, and I don’t ignore Forrest’s advice. It is YOU that is making fanciful, ridiculous claims about what Forrest’s plain English means.

            “There are two ways to look at it and not one. Either he is saying it’s too far to walk, so don’t walk that far, OR, he is saying that you need to walk long distances in search of the treasure.”

            Any ambiguity about interpretation of that line is eliminated by the ATF remarks. NFBTFTW has nothing to do with distance, and that in my opinion is why you and nearly everyone else is confounded.

            “In the end, if the poem solve tells me that I walk long distances, I’m still justified with the ATF’s.”

            You make my case for me: you are doing exactly what you accuse me of: “if the poem solve tells me…” Emphasis: tells YOU. Objectivity eliminated.

            Your spot will take a typical person over 8 hours to complete 2 round trips. How do you justify this to yourself? It is patently ridiculous unless Forrest was on a motor bike.

            Ignoring your alternative interpretations of “two trips”. Just not worthy of a response.

            You have target fixation, and your target requires a ridiculous overland journey. Montana is a long way from southern California. Be mentally prepared for failure if you elect to put BOTG.

          • Zap

            I wholeheartedly disagree.

            That is clearly what he is saying over and over.

            I just doesn’t fit your solve.

          • Lugnutz: I’m just glad there is a permanent record of all these comments. At least one of the two of us is going to look very foolish when this is all over.

          • Eric D, for several reasons, I don’t imagine that FF would have made a solo trip by horse to a place where the TC now is, in order to transport it to that place. A snake, bear, or anything else that might spook a horse could prove to be quite dangerous to a rider with bones about 79 years old, on ROCKY ground, don’tcha think?
            And if you’re thinking about “big dog” as a form of
            transportation, Big Dog motorcycles have huge heavy
            engines, and are not very suitable for off-road use on
            rugged terrain. I don’t mean terrain covered by rug(s),
            regardless of any of RT’s preferences.
            I believe that FF drove a 4WD sedan to a place very close to the hidey spot, and didn’t carry the TC or the gold very far while walking on the day that he hid his trove in the Rocky Mountains more than 8 miles north
            of Santa Fe, NM.

            The above is my opinion. Y’alls denialage may differ.

          • Again Zap, you only hear what you want to hear. My point is the multiple ways that the comments can be interpreted. Where have I put a distance on any of those lines? I’ve said my walk is a certain distance, but never said that those lines gave me any distance. I’ve always said, you have long distances to walk, that is one way to interpret the ATF. That’s it.

            If the clues must be followed, then it looks like you skip some clues on your second trip, if we are to define trip as once there and back as one trip. He said he would not go up down then back up a canyon on the same day. How can you follow all the clues the second trip? If you are driving to your home of Brown, then on the second trip, wouldn’t you go from there? Then you would leave out the first two clues. But f said all the clues must be followed. (besides the point that f said you cannot solve all the clues, but you have).
            You give me two ATF’s which you may be interpreting wrong, and put a distance on them. Not me. You then go with your idea and not what f has said.

            You have target fixation, and your target requires a ridiculous overland journey. Montana is a long way from southern California. Be mentally prepared for failure if you elect to put BOTG.

            Spare me Zap, really? What will happen to you when the one and only way to solve the poem is the Zap way fails? You have been faced with ATF’s that you cannot answer and tend to ignore, but yet, someone else not seeing your way is wrong, as long as we can pick and choose the ATF’s to listen to, and magically solve all the clues when f has said this can’t happen, and only hear what we want to hear as far as any ideas are concerned, then party time, BotG.
            I’ve even stated that both ways could be right or wrong and that still is not good enough for you. So yes, spare me, we disagree. I disagree that there is only one way to interpret everything, the Zap way, and you disagree that logic is used. I don’t mind at all, you have your view, I hope it does work out for you. When it doesn’t, you can still come back and ask me what I see, I’ll still help out. You will get a solve sometime, whether it’s from you own genius or from reading the book I put out when all is done. (Actually, I’d send you a free signed copy, so you got that to look forward too, even though I wouldn’t write a book, still a funny thought). But no insults Zap, I do wish you luck and just having fun. I have a sharp tongue, even the deafest of ears would be sliced, which moderation would follow, don’t need to go there. I reserve the right to be totally wrong, you should too…

          • Charlie: this will be my final reply to you. If you wish to respond, you are perfectly welcome to have that last word. I simply have other priorities, including freshly fallen space rocks from asteroid 2018 LA in Botswana that are far more deserving of my attention. (Yes: you probably heard it here from me first because the US news media is so lame: a 2-4 meter diameter asteroid discovered by Catalina Sky Survey just 8.5 hours prior to impact entered the atmosphere over central Botswana on the evening — local time — of June 2nd, producing sonic booms, and likely scattering thousands of meteorites amongst the giraffe, elephants and lions inhabiting those lands.)

            “Again Zap, you only hear what you want to hear.”

            No: I only hear what Forrest has written and said. And I don’t read between the lines (too much) because he writes and speaks in plain English, though IMO he secrets things within his written responses.

            “I’ve always said, you have long distances to walk, that is one way to interpret the ATF. That’s it.”

            I realize that’s your take. I simply disagree because that’s not a “plain English” reading of Forrest’s poem. And it actually entails doing precisely the opposite of what Forrest has recommended in ATF remarks. If you want to walk round-trip 8 miles or more, that’s of course your right. I just think it’s foolish, that’s all.

            “If the clues must be followed, then it looks like you skip some clues on your second trip, if we are to define trip as once there and back as one trip.”

            Yes. If I have to make two trips to and from my car, I have no problem whatsoever NOT getting back in my car after the first trip, driving back to WWWH, turning around, and returning to where I’ve parked below HoB. If you want to do that out of some deference to your interpretation of Forrest’s clues, have at it.

            “He said he would not go up down then back up a canyon on the same day.”

            I don’t go up and down any canyon even once. You and Seeker are hung up on canyons, for reasons that escape me.

            “How can you follow all the clues the second trip?”

            I don’t. There is no need. It would be like driving back to California, turning around, and driving back to Montana. Insanity.

            “If you are driving to your home of Brown, then on the second trip, wouldn’t you go from there?”

            Yes. Duh.

            “Then you would leave out the first two clues.”

            At least two, yes. I’m not willing to say how many.

            “But f said all the clues must be followed.”

            The first time, yes. But twice, no. Read everything Forrest has said on the subject. Nowhere has he said he physically followed all the clues TWICE. He walked to and from his car, twice. THAT’S IT. If the car ain’t parked at WWWH, guess what? HE HASN’T WALKED ALL THE CLUES! I just don’t understand why it’s so hard to fathom this scenario. It’s like there is a branch of “poem purists” that insist all clues must be walked. I say fine: start walking from home. After all, Forrest never told you to drive to WWWH.

            “You have been faced with ATF’s that you cannot answer …”

            I’ve answered every single one, and I have no conflicts at all. I refuse to commit time and dollars to any search that runs counter to a SINGLE utterance by Forrest. I live too far from Montana to waste time on foolish solutions that hand-wave away minor “irritations” that seem to run counter to one or more things Forrest has said.

            On a final note, Charlie: you are in the right state IMO, but everyone has a 25% chance of guessing the right state at this point (though more than 75% don’t, which I find entertaining). But again, in my opinion, you haven’t nailed down WWWH. Without it, you are sunk. I know you don’t think the poem tells you the precise location of WWWH — and that is why I know you haven’t figured it out.

            As a fellow southern Californian, I wish you good fortune and hope that one day you have the revelation that gives you a sporting chance at finding Indulgence.

          • Zap, I always agree with most of what you write, but I was shocked when you wrote “You and Seeker are hung up on canyons, for reasons that escape me.” The poem says THE CANYON. I have always thought the word THE was important because it meant that the correct canyon would be obvious and that there would be only one option for a canyon once WWH was nailed down. Now the interpretation of “take it in” can be taken at least a couple of ways, but I believe that there is a canyon at/near WWH. JMO

          • Zap ~’I’ve answered every single one, and I have no conflicts at all’ ~ regarding the ATF’s.

            However, you have not explained how any searcher during any period of time in the last 8 years can be at the first two clue and end up stopping in just the right location [ your hoB for example ] and get within 500′ of the chest… and not have the third clue solved.

            For all those folks to get to that parking location they would have needed to know what and where the next clue was… Only fenn has repeated that no one has given him the correct clues after the first two [ for approx 6 – 7 years ] of searchers being that close to the chest after having the first two clues solved.

            Two things are at play here;
            Fenn out right lies about only the first two clues were solved… and the third clue had to be, to get searchers to the next area, miles away.
            Or you are ignoring those ATF’s that you say you can answer by using the excuse… fenn never said he followed ‘all’ the clues.

            Searcher at the first two clue and walked right past the chest… you know the quote[s].
            Searcher at the first two clues and went by all the seven remaining clues.

            For either of those comment not to be an outright lie… IF traveling by vehicle was involved from the first two clues… the next clue [no matter what that is] is a must to have to get all of them searchers to stop in just the right location and to pass seven clues and pass the chest.

            You said; ‘ guess what? HE HASN’T WALKED ALL THE CLUES! I just don’t understand why it’s so hard to fathom this scenario.’

            Because he has said “it is the only way ‘he knows of’… the “clues” not some, all, must be followed… and he followed the clues.

            So, again… how can anyone start at the first two clue’s location and drive any distance to the next location without having the third clue solve that tells them ‘where to stop’??? It is a must know piece of information…
            Yet fenn said; no one has solved the clues in order beyond the first two. That statement stood for years and as of this moment, still does.

            ***So, I can’t fathom how you can get anyone to the next location [from the first two clues], drive to a place and park their car to continue a search without the next clue [clue 3] “solved” to get them there.***

          • All of this talk about walk vs. drive, different interpretations of the comments made by Fenn in reference to such, is a rehash of many years of the same. BOTH sides could be said to have bias as to how they see the poem working. Personally…I do not see how it matters much EITHER way…because it is fairly clear that neither view has worked thus far. The fact remains that at the juncture of the first two clues, and beyond, the ship has run aground.

          • Hi Ken;

            I whole-heartedly agree. What difference does it make whether someone chooses to walk or drive those clues that are drivable? If I can “Follow the clues” on a map, and there happens to be a road that I can drive from clue #1 (wwwh) – to clue #n – why not drive. If a younger person wants to hike this distance – more power to them.

            I think that we get too hung up on “words” rather than “meaning” or intent. of those “words”. If I know what “No place for the meek” indicates, why do I have to walk through that area if I can drive through that area? What is to be gained by walking?

            When Forrest says when he secreted Indulgence, that he took two trips in one afternoon – Why would one jump to the conclusion that that “trip” started at WWWH? Forrest has never said anything like that. It is only an assumption or personal interpretation. It is also an opinion or personal interpretation that Forrest could have driven to the “END” location, parked his car, and THEN hiked to where Indulgence is secreted.

            EITHER is plausible. I lean towards driving to the END – but that is just me. Only after Indulgence is found will it (maybe) be answered – But maybe not.

            Let’s say I find it. I can SAY in my solve that “I” drove to the END spot, and hiked to where I found Indulgence. Does this mean that that is what Forrest did? Not necessarily. If the TOTAL distance from wwwh to Indulgence is short enough, some will still say Forrest COULD have hiked it. ONLY if the distance is fairly long, let’s say 20 miles – will it seem unlikely that Forrest walked the entire distance 20 miles X 4 = 80 miles in one afternoon – HIGHLY UNLIKELY!

            But, back to my original assertion – WHO CARES? What difference does it make? NONE – in my view – except that it offers support (or lack of support) for a particular solve. JMO – JDA

          • Hi JBL — thanks for chiming in. For clarification on canyons, what I meant was that Seeker and Lugnutz keep bringing up Forrest’s comment about how he wasn’t going to go down and up a canyon twice in an afternoon on foot. Many canyons have roads at their bottoms (e.g. Madison Canyon, Gardner Canyon) so there is no need for a searcher to even be bothered with navigating up and down the walls of said canyon.

            “I have always thought the word THE was important because it meant that the correct canyon would be obvious and that there would be only one option for a canyon once WWH was nailed down.”

            That is certainly the case in my solution. The canyon is obvious, the direction is obvious, and WWWH is IN that canyon, not on one of the rims above it. So you and I are certainly on the same page.

          • Lug, I’m down with that. 😉
            Zap, your description of the canyon is very similar to mine, except my WWH is at the beginning of the canyon. So I’m down with your canyon as well. 😉

          • Hi JBL: I wasn’t willing to divulge the location of my WWWH w.r.t. the canyon because it is too critical. Suffice to say that given what you’ve said of your solution, you would like mine — even though we search in different states. 😉

          • I think I would like your WWH and your process on how to solve the poem.
            BTW, my husband and I are planning on going to So. CA a week from Tuesday to visit my son. Going to visit Stone Brewing Co while we are there. I know its your favorite. So cheers!

          • Seeker:
            “…you have not explained how any searcher during any period of time in the last 8 years can be at the first two clue and end up stopping in just the right location [ your hoB for example ] and get within 500′ of the chest… and not have the third clue solved.”

            Oh, but I *have* explained this here, multiple times, even giving examples. Let’s use Madison Junction as WWWH and Madison Canyon as the canyon down. (Neither is correct, in my opinion — this is just for illustrative purposes.) Let’s say home of Brown and even the chest are located somewhere within 500 feet of 7-mile bridge. You begin your journey through the clues at Madison Junction, driving west on the road (along Madison Canyon) toward West Yellowstone. Voila: you’ve got two clues right. But for some reason you think home of Brown is somewhere along Riverside Drive. What happened as a result of you going there? You came within 500 feet of the treasure. You just didn’t know it. What is so unlikely about this scenario? All it takes is a bad interpretation of “Not far, but too far to walk” — in this case, overshooting the target by miles.

            “Not far, but too far to walk” is the most misunderstood line in the poem, in my opinion.

        • Zap, we have travelled those ATF’s before. It is possible you are reading them incorrectly. Now I know that isn’t possible in your train of thought, but still true. I will say again:
          what do we have to walk? we know it is “not far”, BUT, it is “too far” to walk. Hope you can see this because in the ATF, “Long Distances” is “too far”, so we need to walk long distances. That is exactly what is being said. To define what he is saying on your own predetermined definitions of “too far to walk”, tends to incorporate your solve and not f’s interpretation. There are two ways to look at it and not one. Either he is saying it’s too far to walk, so don’t walk that far, OR, he is saying that you need to walk long distances in search of the treasure.
          In the end, if the poem solve tells me that I walk long distances, I’m still justified with the ATF’s.
          Then, we have to look at the word “trips”. A trip is from one place to another. You are combining his comment into the overall trip, when two trips is actually there and back. If he took one trip to the area to do his business, then another trip to complete, then you can see it as two trips. One trip having actually two trips within, (there and back), and the other trip, (the one done in the afternoon, still there and back). I can easily go five miles up and back within a couple hours. That, by definition, is two trips.
          Again, you look at things just one way, IMO, when it’s best to see both or multiple ways f words things. You will disagree, that’s fine, but to say that going to the spot then back to your car is only one trip, is wrong. I mean, if we are putting words in f’s mouth, we might as well said he “tripped” on the way twice. There’s the two trips.
          1 : an instance of traveling from one place to another ·a trip to Europe
          2 : a brief errand having a certain aim or being more or less regular ·a trip to the dentist
          3 : the action of releasing something mechanically
          4 : a device for releasing something by tripping a mechanism

          So sorry, there is no counter, just a disagreement on how to read certain ATF’s. Neither way is incorrect, and, if you need to walk a long distance, you will still be honoring the ATF’s.

          I still don’t understand how f, a military man, getting up early every morning his whole life, just happens to get up late this on time and make two trips in one afternoon. I could see him now just looking at his watch, waiting, “not yet, only 8:00a.m.”. “Augh, only 11:00 a.m., one more hour then I can start the most important thing in my life”…………….
          Augh, 11:30 a.m. “come on!!!”. Okay, 12:00, Gooo!!!, need to hurry before 6:00 p.m.
          Once an early riser, always an early riser. To Forrest, 12:00 is almost dinner time…

          • Hi Zap. I am curious as to why you think the treasure will not be found this Summer even though Forrest had a gut reeling? Happy hunting Zap.

          • Hi John R.: I guess my question back to you is if Forrest had never mentioned his gut feeling, would you feel differently about the prospects of the chest’s recovery this summer?\

            Probably not even 1% of searchers post on blogs, so no real way for us here to gauge progress. But it does speak to the improbability of whoever Forrest based his gut feeling on being a poster here, let alone a regular poster.

          • Charlie – Poetically, “too far to walk” could also be saying such distance is somehow impossible to walk in a myriad of different ways, so there are more than just the 2 possibilities you stated above.

        • Hi Zap not to change your subject but back to the bag of white marbles and one GOLD one when you figure the clues out the bag becomes clear and you reach in and grab the GOLD one.when you know you go with confadence and smile.

        • Hi Zap sorry for subject change but there was know reply above. About the bag of white marbles and one GOLD one. will when you solve the Nine Clues the bag becomes clear and you reach In and get the GOLD one.when you know you go in with confidence and Grin,come out with Smile.

        • I think the important point to note here is that FF stated that the two trips were made from his car and NOT from the first clue. No one knows at what point he parked his car and started the trail on foot. This could have been at any point when hiding the TC for all we know… The complete solve may be over many miles but a handy place to park may be close in relation to the chest. F says that we should follow the clues and he may well have done when hiding it but that doesn’t necessarily mean you have to follow the route on foot from clue 1, all in my opinion of course

          • Hi Rexnest – your thoughts 100% align with my own. IMO we definitely drive some of the clues — it is the most straightforward reading of the poem.

            Could you walk all the clues? Sure, but why would you if you’ve got a road you can drive on? Who wants to lug that chest any farther than necessary? Personally, I choose to park below home of Brown. It’s not that far from WWWH, but it’s too far to walk with 42 lbs of bronze and gold.


            1. Forrest never said he walked all the clues.
            2. Forrest never said he followed all the clues twice in the process of hiding the chest.

          • Zap –

            Again, you are expressing an opinion, and a week one, at that. He has said multiple times he walked and did it twice in one afternoon.

            What are you relying on for the basis of your fact #1?
            He didn’t say the word “all”?

            And Fact #2?
            He didn’t say “all” and :twice”. He definitely said we have to follow the clues and it’s the only way.

            Why don’t you ask Forrest directly?

            Forrest, when you said you walked from your car and made two trips in one afternoon, did you you mean that you walked from WWWH?


            *Maybe some of the above isn’t an opinion since I didn’t use the word all.

          • Hi Lugnutz,

            “Again, you are expressing an opinion, and a week one, at that.”

            I said IMO we drive some of the clues, so yes it’s an opinion. But a very logical one.

            “He has said multiple times he walked and did it twice in one afternoon.”

            Well, duh! But he didn’t say from WHICH clue he walked. You think he walked all the clues — that’s YOUR opinion. I say he didn’t. We’re never going to come to a compromise on those to diametrically opposed assumptions.

            “What are you relying on for the basis of your fact #1?”

            Lugnutz, it’s simple: Forrest has never publicly said he walked all (nine) clues. If you disagree, produce the evidence.

            “He didn’t say “all” and :twice”. He definitely said we have to follow the clues and it’s the only way.”

            Following the clues is NOT the same as walking them. And he’s never said you have to follow them (walking or otherwise) twice. Again, if you have evidence to the contrary, produce it.

            “Why don’t you ask Forrest directly?”

            Why don’t you? I’ll tell you why I won’t: because I don’t think he’ll answer, and he shouldn’t have to. He’d probably say the poem tells you the answer to that question.

          • Q ~ “When you hid your treasures, did you take the same path that is described in the poem, or were you able to skip some of the steps because of your familiarity with the area? Thank you Curtis”
            A ~ “The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowlege. f”
            *** the same path describe in the poem…
            *** there is no other way… to his knowlege…

            ~ fenn’s more recent comment;
            ~~ “To answer some questions and save others from being asked, I {fenn} did follow the clues in the poem when I hid the treasure chest…”

            What did fenn do;
            Made two trips from his car in one afternoon, twice, and walked less that a few miles, to the ‘hide’.
            And NOW we know he actually ‘followed’ the clues as we are told to do. If that is not all the clues, I don’t know what is. Because there is no other way……… if that is not all the clues, I don’t know what is.

            The Solve drivers here have never been able to answer why fenn would have to follow the clues from the first, if driving was involved, other than to say… * he never said ALL the clues. *

            Well, If there is no other way that ‘he knows of’ [and I’m sure he would know], is that not ALL the clues? and did so twice…?

            End of commentary.

          • Zap –

            I am the one following what he said and believing him. That’s why I’m not in the position to ask. You are the one that things he was being misleading.

            He said multiple times that he walked to the treasure twice in one afternoon.

            Do you honestly believe that in the end he will say “Aha! That’s how I tricked you! I never said I walked ALL the clues.”

            You ask because You believe he has not addressed that question.

            He would answer the question if you phrased it properly and Jenny was will to to forward it. Ask if he walked from WWWH to the treasure location..

            Why do you believe he wouldn’t? (Because you believe he wants to deceive.)


          • He said that he followed the clues, and that we need to follow the clues in order. . He didn’t say “how” he followed them , or how we should follow them. Unless it’s on a backwards bike. IMO.

          • Seeker –

            Even though to me the question has been answered, I have submitted a question to Jenny. I don’t know if she has any interest in this debate though.

            I believe your assessment of the situation is correct. Folks that have a solve that covers a long distance will continue to hang their hat on the ALL nail.


          • Lugnutz: I’m actually speechless that anyone has an alternative interpretation to the necessity to drive some of the clues. But I know you and Seeker feel strongly about this, and who am I to dissuade you.

            But you folks out there following along and snickering at the banter: SHAME ON YOU. Chime in and stop being cowardly spectators. I’m sick of being the only one stating what *I* think is the obvious on this ridiculous subject. Offer your opinion — I don’t care which way or the other, just take a frickin’ stand. Maybe *I* am the outlier and everyone else thinks you walk all the clues.

            But I’m done opining on this subject. It is so blatantly obvious to me that it isn’t even worthy of further commentary. Others can fight that battle with Lugnutz and Seeker — it bores me to tears.

            –END OF COMMENTARY–

          • I’m on Zap’s side in this argument. The comments can be reasonably interpreted to support either of these positions, so it comes down to whether our interpretation of the poem points one way or the other. In my case my first few clues are far enough apart and along a road so that it wouldn’t make much sense to walk it. Unless an ATF is completely clear look to the poem for answers instead of splitting hairs on interpretations. IMO.

          • Zap and Rexnest, I agree with you both. To me, either could be true, so logically one cannot exclude driving. Also, one of F’s comments was something like – If you have a search partner, best to have them stay in the car. I think F is telling us that the one in the car will be the finder, not the walker. JMO

            Of course, I would love to be the one to settle this debate, 😉

          • Oh, and if I am the finder, I’ll leave a fifth of bourbon at the spot as a nod to my lovely state. And, if I get to Dal’s cache , I think it will be a small (airplane size) bottle. Happy hunting everybody!

          • Zap,
            “Shame on you…yada, yada, yada” Did he drive…did he walk…maybe everybody’s wrong??? LOL Zap, you shamed me into weighing in with a third option.

            Seeker mentioned:
            A ~ “The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowlege. f”
            ~ fenn’s more recent comment;
            ~~ “To answer some questions and save others from being asked, I {fenn} did follow the clues in the poem when I hid the treasure chest…”

            Consider the following quote:
            When you wrote the poem, did you start with the first clue or the ninth?
            “I knew all along where I wanted to hide the treasure so I didn’t need a map or any information to write the poem. Everything was in my head. It took me a while to get the wording exactly how I wanted it. Counting the clues and hiding the chest came later. (((It is not likely that anyone will find it without following the clues, at least in their mind.”))))

            ‘Following’ is not necessarily a walking/driving exercise or even physically visiting. You can ‘follow’ a train of thought. So maybe the important possibility is that the first couple of clues are a set of instructions to be ‘followed’ mentally? Instructions to get you oriented in the right place.

          • Zap –

            What if you have indeed identified where warm waters halt, but you are driving past the rest of the clues on your way to where you think the clues are?

            You don’t need to answer.

            In my opinion you would find this very upsetting. Just like the many others who have identified the starting point.

            When the TC is found and the location revealed there will be a good number of people hitting their foreheads and saying I can’t believe I missed that. OR I can’t believe I was so close.


          • Good on you Colokid!… It kinda puts a wrinkle in any of the two scenarios being batted back and forth…doesn’t it? There you go Lugnutz….this is the one I would not repost for you a few days ago. I’m sure you will find something amiss with this one too…

          • Colokid,
            Following by understanding would simply take one to the spot or at least close enough to find the chest/spot. Could it be that way? It would make my day easier… No driving, peddling, stomping.
            Yet true, if we think about it. The only true place we are looking for seems to be the blaze location.
            Another scenario is; park and walk to all the clues that might be situated in a small area. The several hours of walking, in one afternoon from the car to the hide / clues, would be the total amount of time and distance for both trips to be accomplished.

            But unfortunately, the discussion is about the ‘need to drive out clues’ [at least for the first trip]. My only problem is, how everyone made it to the next step or later steps by driving/stomping/ hop skip n jumping distances without knowing the next clue to go to? And all end up in the same place, when the clues are supposed to be ‘miles’ apart.

          • Colo –

            I had mentioned to Zap recently, and I thought he was coming along with, the idea that the clues are followed mentally. And specifically whenever Fenn refers to “clues” he is ONLY referring to clues as opposed to what the clues represent (geography).

            I do not believe there is any walking OR driving of “clues” or from one clue to another. I am simply, in my comments to him, cautioning Zap that the distance he travels from WWH to HoB is too far. This happens commonly and I think it’s because solvers get stuck on the idea that a physical canyon is involved and that it must be gone down.

            It is my opinion that when Fenn says one (Curtis) must follow the clues in order he is not referring to the locations or “solves”. He is only referring to the clues. You cannot solve for X (TC) without all nine clues.


          • Ken –

            You lost me. I did not find anything amiss with any Fenn comment ever. You must but thinking of someone else. I just asked you to complete your thought rather than leave it hanging. (You were commenting to somone else.)

            The quote posted by Colo is well known, well discussed and follows my line of thought.

            The clues are solved and then produce the location of the TC. Further, I believe all of the geographical locations referenced in the clues are in close proximity to each other. As Seeker (and McB) has more eloquently explained, I will be able to see all the clues from one vantage point and know that I am near it.


          • Lugnutz, Zap, Ken, Seeker, stalkers, and others,

            Well, I still do not have much credit in TTOTC, but I can guess.

            And attention: it’s just a hunch, idea, thought of mine.

            In my solution, from WWWH to “blaze”, I have all the clues in a single point. “ALL”.

            WWWH is the largest and blaze is the smallest. All in order of magnitude / size.

            One inside the other.

            It is not possible to reach blaze without being “inside” the WWWH.

            I just can not understand the stanza 6. Everything that stanza says I have inside the blaze, and at the same time none. I can not accurately.

          • Lugnutz, in your reply to Colo you said that you were trying to caution me that my distance from WWWH to HoB is too far. Yet I’ve never given any indication how far that distance is in my solution. It could be 500 feet. I *will* give a hint that it is no where near 10 miles.

          • 2 more pennies to the pot:
            For anyone that drives/otherwise moves on from WWWH and clue 2…WHY WHY WHY do you have to visit/follow/see/observe WWWH? Why do you move on to more important things (HOB)? In Zaps hints of his spot, he says he parks below HOB…so why did you go see WWWH…why bother if you knew HOB? I believe the answer is the ‘only way I know’ ATF, the assumption being there is only one way ‘in’ and ‘out’ of the place…why is it important to go to WWWH and then leave it? I have never seen much explained on this, and I think Seeker’s comment about the first 2 clues and the 200/500′ is very valid…what/why did they miss #3 yet still got that close? My personal opinion is the area is hard to get to, not frequented often, certainly not by tourists and that there is much more than just geography (still no idea what that is!…playing Canasta a lot these days). Zap et al, would love to hear examples beyond…’I drive up/down the canyon and wwwh is along the way to the rest’…tell me WHY it is so important despite you can just drive/otherwise go by it and wave…something about WWWH requires you to know it, see it, stop at it, BEFORE you can move to #2…help us understand, any examples/thoughts?

          • Tbug;

            Curiosity and confirmation .

            Something in the poem leads me to a wwwh spot that I can locate on a map or GE. I can see a “Canyon Down” – I figure out a “Put in” point that is below what could be a hoB. etc.

            Am I then just to drive past wwwh, the canyon, past the “put in point” below hoB and head to – say – no place for the meek – without ever stopping at wwwh, canyon down, put-in point and/or hoB? I don’t think so. I want to SEE this wwwh place. I want to SEE the canyon down and the “put-in” place and the hoB. Curiosity dictates that I stop AND I need to confirm that what I saw on my map and/or GE is in-fact what I think they need to be.

            If I have to make multiple BotG trips will I stop at wwwh, etc every time – probably not – but I do stop now and again just to take in what is there. JMO – JDA

          • Hi TBug: the answer to your first question in my case is that I don’t have to visit WWWH. Depending on the direction of approach, I might not pass it all. It’s like the example I gave yesterday using Madison Junction as WWWH — if you were approaching from the west (e.g. West Yellowstone), there would be no need to visit Madison Junction if Riverside Drive or 7-mile Bridge was where you thought home of Brown was.

            “My personal opinion is the area is hard to get to, not frequented often, certainly not by tourists and that there is much more than just geography (still no idea what that is!…playing Canasta a lot these days).”

            You’ll have to square that belief with Forrest’s answer to this question:

            “How do you know searchers have been within 200 feet of the treasure?”

            “Well, because there … people have told me exactly where they were, and that’s the only reason I know. And, and, that 200 feet I think is pretty accurate. But there weren’t very many people within 200 … lots of people within 500 feet of the treasure.”

            “LOTS of people”. That doesn’t sound like it’s hard to get to at all.

            For Forrest’s puzzle, he needed a starting point. Something unique that he could describe poetically. The blaze and home of Brown are not unique geographic features (e.g. “There’s ten billion blazes out there!”) so he needed some way to lead you to those later clues. Plus, the non-uniqueness of the later clues serves a dual purpose: it prevents short-circuiting the clues. If you don’t solve WWWH, he’s telling you your task is hopeless. WWWH is the only way — by design.

            But once you’ve got WWWH, and this has told you your canyon down, and you figure out that all important HoB, WWWH has served its purpose as a primer. Like Forrest said, “If you are sure about the location of home of Brown why are you concerned about where warm waters halt?” What Forrest is saying is two-fold: the only way you’ll ever figure out home of Brown is if you’ve first figured out WWWH, but once having solved home of Brown, there is probably no further use for WWWH.

            Now Seeker is going to insist that we’re supposed to ponder the significance of WWWH — that there is something about it that may indicate an overall theme, or provide a crucial insight, without which we will fail. One quote that he would probably use in support of that hypothesis is an early one (don’t know the date, but it’s at least several years old):

            “The problem searchers make is that they don’t dwell long enough on the first clue. If you can’t find the first clue you don’t have anything. People driving down the street looking for a blaze, because that’s one of the clues, but you can’t start in the middle of the poem and find the treasure.”

            But I think a careful reading of this quote should tell people that he means dwell on SOLVING the first clue, not dwell on the significance of the place it refers to. He gives the example of people driving down the road looking for the blaze — that tells me that he’s trying to disabuse people of the notion that the clues can be solved out of order.

          • Addendum: found the date for that final quote — 8/11/2015 in Outside Online: Live Bravely.

          • Zap,
            The problem is; folks ‘have’ solved, deciphered, mentioned, indicated and been on site at the first two clues. [according to fenn]
            ~You said ‘Now Seeker is going to insist that we’re supposed to ponder the significance of WWWH…’

            Well yeah!
            Is it not more apparent that while on site and indicated the first and second clue… searchers didn’t even know they did so?
            There should be something we need to understand about why fenn tells us to “nail down” that clue OR stay home.

            If we look at a map and say, yep that is wwwh, How or why are we to nail down that clues prior?
            There must be something about it we should know.. prior. Because, the reality so far is… folks get there and don’t know they had it correct because they missed something that they needed to know about the place. Maybe something that we need to see there even… “observe” there.

            LOL if all it is, is a starting point, and searcher go by the remaining clues… what is missing?
            Are they all stupid and can’t follow ‘straightforwards’ directions…
            Is it because they didn’t understand the significance to the clue [ the significance to where they were]
            fenn repeats: that’s the one to nail down, and; there would be no way to find the blaze without the first clue.

            I’ll even through an opinion out here… I don’t think you’ll find any clue if you don’t understand why fenn puts us at wwh.
            You can argue I’m wrong all day long… but you can argue the lack of results… so far, everyone at the first clue or thought they could drive by it… all have failed, even when they told fenn what the clues was, and on site.

            The excuses are wrong turns, or clues get harder, rather than easier as fenn has stated. But he has never flinch about how important it is to nail down that first clue or you have nothing.
            LOL… I mean, How many ATF’s do we have that tell us just that?!

            We finally agree, Zap… lol… Seeker is going to insist that we’re supposed to ponder the significance of WWWH…’

            Then again, I’m not the one who said it… I have only suggested what fenn has stated. And the results speak for themselves.

          • Hi Seeker,

            “Is it not more apparent that while on site and indicated the first and second clue… searchers didn’t even know they did so?”

            I don’t think we have enough information to know the various reasons that folks arrived at WWWH. I know how I arrived at mine (key word + big picture logic), but for the sake of argument that does not provide insight into why others went to Forrest’s WWWH.

            “There should be something we need to understand about why fenn tells us to “nail down” that clue OR stay home.”

            Obviously, hundreds of thousands of people are not taking Forrest’s advice on this. 😉 Personally, I think all Forrest is saying with the “nailed down” business is that you better be darn sure you’ve go the right starting point; otherwise, nothing else in your solution can or will be right.

            “If we look at a map and say, yep that is wwwh, How or why are we to nail down that clues prior? There must be something about it we should know.. prior.”

            Other than its identity, I don’t see that there is anything extra to know about the starting point that’s relevant. For instance, I don’t believe there is a temporal element to solving Forrest’s clues, and I don’t believe there is something that must be witnessed in person at WWWH.

            “Because, the reality so far is… folks get there and don’t know they had it correct because they missed something that they needed to know about the place.”

            I know you believe this, but your opinion has been formed somewhat from hearsay, and a particular interpretation of things that Forrest has said. You think that because searchers go off the rails at clue #3, it’s because they failed to figure out something at WWWH. I just disagree. And as I’ve written many times before, searchers blow it because they botch “not far, but too far to walk”.

            “LOL if all it is, is a starting point, and searcher go by the remaining clues… what is missing? Are they all stupid and can’t follow ‘straightforwards’ directions…”

            I wouldn’t say those two-clue-solving searchers are stupid (after all, they figured out the right starting point). It’s just that whatever cleverness is needed to figure out WWWH may have little or no bearing on the prospects for also figuring out the next clue. Just like the Gold Bug example mentioned earlier today. You have to be able to adjust — to have a variety of imaginative approaches to problem solving; solving the first clue is not a free pass to solving all the others (as amply demonstrated by how long the searcher community was stuck on the first two clues).

            It seems to me that searchers can learn something important about the years of failure to get past clue #2: for one thing, if your clue #3 is simple and obvious, then it’s clearly wrong. Yes, Forrest once said the clues get progressively easier, in his opinion. But does the evidence support that? Searchers solved the first two clues almost immediately (at least relative to how long the Chase has been going on), and then all progress ceased for 4 or 5 years?? I’d say the evidence speaks for itself more strongly than Forrest’s opinion that the clues get easier.

          • Thanks Zap, yes my comment about the tourists/hard to get to place are pure ‘feeling’ and would need to reconcile with the ATFs…I just find it baffling that he could venture off trail somewhere tourist traffic is high…maybe he did it on a Tuesday and it just wasn’t busy? But also…’very many’ and ‘lots’ is two fold…and this has been debated to death, but how do we know those were searchers or just people? When I say hard to get to, I mean the general area is not in any state tourist brochure…most certainly not YNP (IMO), to me solitude is paramount to FF, especially when we say ‘special’ or ‘near and dear’ to him…JMHO. So in my mind the drive to the general area (before you get to WWWH) is not near a major town, involves dirt roads, takes more than 30 minutes off a paved road to get to, and thus the area does not get many visitors….that does not mean searchers (many/lots) couldn’t figure it out. But still begs the Seeker question…why? why did these people figure it out, but not really (or enough to get clue #3)? Good discussion, keep it going.

          • In my opinion, WWWH just tells me what state to be in. Take it in the canyon down, tells me it isn’t up on a mountain. Probably in a very popular location, so that Forrest could actually say they solved the first 2 clues, because they were actually there (In the correct state at the correct canyon down), they just didn’t know it. That’s why they went by the rest of the clues.
            Narrowing it down to one state does take you more than half way to the treasure.

    • Thanks everyone, your interpretations (and corrections) have helped me change my overall view.

      I realized that perhaps solving it requires figuring out how he did it. Or how an 80 year old could do it.

      Figuring that out requires a lot more than simply mileage or distance, imho

  13. JDA on May 29, 2018 at 11:18 am said:

    OH, and a nice side note. Last year I bought a very nice Army pack at an Army surplus store. Pack got heavy, and I took it off and put it where I could retrieve it later. Well, we couldn’t find it. Well, this trip we found it. A “critter” had gnawed a light windbreaker I had tied on the outside, and they gnawed a pair of leather gloves that were inside. Dumped out a few mice “droppings”, but other than that, I now have a “new” backpack that I can use once we do find Indulgence – (Wishful Thinking – haha) JDA


    When I first read this account I read Army “pickax” not “pack”. Then as you discribed the mice adventures, I had to go back and reread it. I htink it is time for an afternoon nap. Yawnnnnnn.

    Welcome back, safe and sound!

  14. ken on May 29, 2018 at 1:05 pm said:

    perhaps, generally speaking. It goes without saying that the *entire* solution is wholly dependent on the *correct* first clue.
    I think the correct solution to the riddle ties it all together and lands the searcher without mistake at the treasure. No coordinates needed.


    Now we’re talkin’! Well said – succinct. All the while, the clues are congruent to one another. It is a conundrum.

  15. Zap, you’re right. We cannot use statistics to accurately guess due to not knowing the find time.

  16. You can’t get the crow taste out till you book the next trip. After which you will likely sample again. It’s a viscous cycle.

  17. Thanks Ken, Crow Creole sounds like the best option. The more spice you add to crow the more you drown out the meat.

    • Sometimes I bend the rules a little and use Crowfu…makes me feel like I fit in better @ the local food co-op.

  18. charlie on May 30, 2018 at 4:11 pm said:

    So swwot, are you in the camp of solving the poem will yield the spot, then mapping out your path gives you a starting point and then the first clue?
    Then, following your path, finding the clues on the way? Until you reach the spot/treasure?
    If so, I think that makes it 3-5 of us.
    There is only two actual ways to see it. Either you need to solve clue one to get clue two to get clue three, etc…. or, you solve the whole poem to get the final spot.
    I’m only in the solve poem for spot camp because of the couple of ATF’s that say that some of the clues cannot be solved correctly. Since that would be wwwh and the blaze, to be in the other camp goes against what f is stating. If you can’t solve clue one, then how would you solve clue two thinking? And thus the blaze, which also cannot be known correctly. Seems to me, the only option, is to solve the poem, which yields the spot the chest is at.
    That’s not to say that all the clues cannot be solved, he would have to let us solve some clues, but just the few things he has mentioned as not having the info to solve. I see no other way except that the searcher will know the final spot before he/she knows the first clue.
    So: final spot, clue one, clue two, clue three, etc….. with some hints to support: drawing nigh, water high, marvel gaze, etc…


    To be honest, I am keeping an open mind in solving the riddle/9 clues. I do not have a preconceived notion of whether the “solution” will render up the beginning or the end spot. I suspect it is the beginning – that is – wwwh. From there, the rest of the “solution” unfolds – either because you know the key and know how to move forward through the clues and/or with botg. I also suspect that until you go to wwwh, you cannot solve the poem. (Which seems to explain why the little girl from India could get no further.)

    As an addendum, and worth me mentioning again, in case some folks missed it, I also suspect that once you are in the vicinity of wwwh, the remaining clues are more symbolic in nature and are not points on a map, necessarily. Once uncovered/discovered they could be pinned on to a map, but a map isn’t going to help you find them “in the wood”.

    All in my opinion,

  19. JDA- You mentioned that Plymouth was important to your solve. I dont know if you have seen my posts regarding my belief that a rick formation is involved in the correct solve. Yesterday, while looking a layers of rock formations when I noticed a layer sandwiched between other types of rock. It was called Pilgrim Sandstone. Reminded me of Plymouth Rock and made me wonder if the formation Im looking for includes Pilgrim Sandstone.

    • Sorry Flutterby you misread. I think that it was Swwot who mentioned that he thought that the “special Something” Forrest put in Indulgence might be related to Forrest’s 35 Plymouth – Bullet. I said that I doubt it since Forrest wrote a story about selling Bullet, and Forrest did not seem sad about it.

      But back to your point – Pilgrim sandstone could play a part – Who knows? Not me – JDA

      • Thanks for claifying what I misunderstood. I actually think Pilgrim Sandstone plays a role but possibly as a red herring. After loosing a job, FF said his mother told him it was ok to cry, so they stood under the lean-to where father kept the Plymouth. I believe I know where the lean-to is and there is rock formation there. Its near my search area.. But I wonder if its a red herring. Seems too simple. Hindreds of people pass the lean-to everyday. It has a road that crosses near it but the actual “trail” to thecrock formation that nobody seems intetested in would be accessed via a dry creak.

        • Good luck in figuring it out – One never knowa where these “red Herrrings” will lead – JDA

        • what’s all this talk about red herrings? If there seems to be a rabbit hole or a red herring….it is probably all in the mind of the searcher. Fenn has repeatedly told everyone that this is *straight forward” and that there is no “subterfuge*. I think the main problem is that no one has figured out how fenn was thinking when he started this escapade.

      • I don’t believe he sold Bullet. Bullet went missing after Peggy drove it for a summer. He sold Bullet’s cousin. Same type, different car.

      • If I remember correctly Forrest came home and bullit was gone. With nobody talking about what happened to it.

        • Your thinking the ball of string, Tim.
          That fenn was devastated that his dad sold the family car and replaced it with another… could they do the same to him, line of thinking.

  20. This discussion of how far FF walked is not answered in the poem in my opinion. I believe the poem gets us to the general location and then we must study the rock formations to get the exact spot. “TFTW” in my opinion is a reference to the historical record in the rock. We can see the record in the rock but cannot walk back through time to experience the history. So getting to the rock formation is “not far” but the history it holds is “too far to walk”. IMO

      • SmokyBaer,

        Can you expand your thought?

        If a searcher is at WWWH and needs to get to hoB, does TFTW mean the entire canyon, line of thinking.. to it’s end.
        So we only need to travel to hoB { somewhere in between }?

        I’m looking at your thought as, all the clues on a map, picturing a canyon with a 1/2 way point where hoB is located, and using the semicolon to suggest that stanza 3 is only talking about a description of the full picture [ mapping of the canyon ] and hoB is the center point and location of the trove. Which would be indicated by the surroundings of HL n WH as either; ‘the location of the chest’ or the ‘overview’ [looking at a map] of the entire area…

        Sound about right?
        Just curious.

        • I’d think hob can be at the end of the canyon…a short distance canyon.

          • Size might matter… only I think that the early searcher who were on site, and left the poem, did something similar. They went to far to the other side of the canyon. The idea here would be… they passed the remaining clue and the chest attempting to find hoB at the end of said canyon.

            In theory anyways.

        • Seeker,
          My solve has us not in the canyon at all. It is on the map as a pointer with HOB near the end of it. That’s where the actual travelling begins, imo.

          What messed my solve up for the longest was deciding which direction to go “with confidence”. Like many others, finding a suitable “meek” place made the direction abundantly clear. Honestly, i have never put distance as an important factor other than “too far” meant just that.

          To answer the question tho, the semi-colon is where we get out of the car, grab a sammich and coke to head up the creek. Good or bad, i don’t know yet, as there are lots of HL and WH targets to choose from in our search area. I have my favorite that really pops for me BUT will not know if it’s right until we get there and work out the 9th clue.

          Our solve feels good but like said, it’s all opinion until you lock the treasure in the trunk.

          • Sounds ok, Smoky.
            But have you ever considered that the poem was designed to have any area near one of the many WWWH to have a similar references [or what a searcher would consider, similar] to all the other clues?
            What does this do? It creates the idea / illusion that we must keep going and search for other clues near and far, right?
            NFBTFTW, imo has done its job well. It has all leaving the poem… creating the idea we need to; not go far or have to go far. Both if which having no known distance. This creates and forces; alternative transportation, or the idea we don’t need to be at the first clues…we can start at another.

            Those two ideas have not been suggested in any way, [as far as i’m concerned] by any ATF.
            For years we have asked fenn if he followed the clues, or take a different/shorter route… so now when he finally gives an answer… many still use the excuse fenn only tells 85% of the truth.

            Again, imo… some searcher are only hoping that they can use that excuse to allow their personally pick search area to work.
            LOL well sure it will work! [ until it all falls apart on site ] IF a later clue in ‘their’ solve is 10 miles away… anyone can make anything work using the idea that fenn isn’t being truthful when he stated; he followed the clues when he hid the chest… when he tells all… it is the only way that he knows of.

            I personally don’t understand why it so hard to conceive the design, he part his ride and walked the clues… doing just that. “The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowlege.f”

    • What if TFTW is related to after you have ‘put in below the home of brown’? After all you are told to put in at this point. Maybe, it is ff’s way of instructing us to use a different mode of transport from here onwards as it is too far to walk to the chest… Just a thought

  21. So, have any of you ever noticed how random things are and how sometimes they just happen? Google Earth is like that… Have you every found anyone on GE in the middle of a National Forest all by themselves just standing there underneath a tree? I have.

    Fate allows certain things to happen in my opinion, yet one has to be bold enough to either believe in it or take a step forward to see if that condition, circumstance or per say happenstance is true or not.

    So, i asked myself, “Is this fellow “Resting” or is there another reason. Why would a guy would be in that location ALONE?”

    I mean how many people actually are brave enough to go walking ALONE into a high mountainous NF. Well, we all know Dal and maybe a handful of others do… so I will give kudos to them. All in all, not many.

    On image day… that would be my image day that I found this on GE… one can make certain that I “panned my view area” a long ways out looking very closely by a few miles and couldn’t find even a horse… a few cattle maybe… since hiking is required to have a stick, walking is the mold of a few miles. 3 miles or less according to a few of you guys.

    I’ve always wondered what this lone Maverick had with him. It’s a question that only he can be certain of. I came up with a nickname for this project hiker that I thought fit pretty… Well… I believe so anyway.

    Although he’s just there (in an image), he quietly gives “me” a ton of information. It’s like he’s known that “secret where” (Place) for a while and his mind is at ease. He’s restful and listening well, hearing the echoes of his childhood. He’s back in the middle again. But maybe he knows he’s always been in the middle for that is where fate placed him.

    I will challenge y’all to do as I did and find this man in this particular NF somewhere North of SF… and if you are so lucky as to do so…. you just may find the TC by the end of summer.

    If your interested in seeing this photo you can email me at the letter j and trolinger at me dot com and politely ask I will be glad to share the said photo.

    Seems dal thought some “wording” of my full story was too egotistical to post here but I thought it was interesting enough.

    Good Luck and Stay Safe

    James (TZP)

    • A couple of years ago I was looking at a potential search area on GE and noticed an airplane right where one probably would not be. Huh. After thinking for a bit I thought perhaps it was a crash site…but the plane seemed intact. A day or so later it dawned on me…the satellite shot captured the plane in flight. I followed the direction the plane was heading maybe a couple miles on GE and there was another shot of it. It had me going for a bit though…

      • yeah that cool…. I probably would have thought the same.

        I don’t think there’s any men floating around with a stick though.

      • Oh ya I have seen planes in flight it does very much throw you off. Makes you say how the heck did that plane get out there.

  22. There will be no mosqui – toes, (pronounced, musky toes) in my search at all. Are you paying attention? I hope so.

    • Will Charlie M i think musky toes logging boots two pares of socks what do you think?

        • I would love to see if you me or Clint have even the closest solution. I’m willing to wager… by the end of July.

          • Travis Brown if you have first stanza nail down then we may be looking at the same pot of GOLD at the end of the RAINBOW.you must live at southern end of California if it takes 22 hrs to get there.i am a Marine lived on camp Penelton for 2 yr 1971 to 73 OORAH

          • Clint I must confess. I actually live in Spokane WA, recently moved here from southern CA.
            As far as having the Stanzas figured out I believe I have all of them pretty solid. It only takes me 6 hrs drive time to reach my solve area.

          • Travis Brown,

            I think there are enough wagers going on, the one I like the most is the eating of the hat. I hope he marinates it with a good sauce.

            Thanks for asking.

          • Clint:
            I was stationed at Camp Pendleton 68-70. I believe that Dal was stationed there in 69.

            Semper Fi,

            Windy City

    • Because of the beetle infestation and the lack of moisture – ALL of our forests are in extreme danger of mammoth fires. PLEASE. PLEASE be careful out there folks!!! JDA

    • This gives me an idea, actually. The melting point of bronze is 1,742 °F. The melting point of gold is 1,948°F. Forest fires can reach that much. Does that rule out this rather large area of NM search territory? What others are likewise scorched earth since 2010?

      • I don’t think it rules it out – folks may now be looking for a pile of melted gold / bronze rather than a chest.

        • It’d be a real shame to loose the things that have more value than the metal content, like the ancient coins/jewels, and Mr. Fenn’s personal effects like the memoir.

          • I don’t see any steam in your avatar.

            I recently read that one of Marianne’s early hit songs was “As Tears Go By”.

            Sometimes I enjoy this chase.

      • Hard to believe it would reach that temperature if it was in an area that is wet but who knows. I believe FF mentioned it could be scorched which is much different than melted.

      • Call me skeptical, but I do not think any wood fire with only the oxygen available in the atmosphere in a natural state can reach those temperatures. Adding more O2 can help, think of bellows or compressed gases, but at atmospheric pressure, I don’t think so. “Show me the proof”.

      • Thanks Jeremy, inciweb is a good resource for checking on where there are fires and if you look at the thermal information you can get an idea of how active they are. With the winter having been as dry as it was it’s a good idea to check any areas you’re thinking of going to before you get there.

    • wdor…how was your botg? Anything noteworthy besides the scenery? Did you see wildlife?

  23. “If you don’t know where it is, go back to the first clue.”
    “…don’t see it the same way I do.”
    “If you don’t know where to search, any trail will take you there.”
    “If you can’t find the first clue, you don’t have anything.”
    “If you don’t, if you can’t figure that clue out you don’t have anything.”
    “Go back to the poem and start with the first clue.”
    “Do you expect that people will somehow *know* for sure they have found the first clue?”

    • Answer…
      “No, many people have found the first clue but they didn’t know it. Until someone finds the treasure they will not know for sure that they have discovered the first clue.”

      • Why the rehash of these few of many similar comments from fenn?
        It becomes clearer that there will be no magic answer to the *correct* first clue until the *entire* poem/map is deciphered. I do not believe there is a definitive clue, hint, Easter egg, picture or anything that will point a searcher to the correct first clue…other than figuring out the entire *design* of the poem. He wants folks out there discovering and poking around… and investigating their ideas…until it all falls in place.
        To be sure….there are scads of pages of comments from fenn that can help weed through what works and not…maybe…and also to help stay *in bounds*…but I believe the riddle needs to be figured and tested.

        • Hi Ken, The idea of figuring out the design of the entire poem, might not work. Since the last eight clues, can be equally applied to hundereds or thousands of possible WWWH’s.

          • maybe that’s the whole point James. How many years did it finally take for fenn to say “…solve the riddle, the nine clues in the poem.” ?? He has never to my knowledge guaranteed that there are definitive *answers* anywhere but the poem. “Unintentional” hints if you can recognize them in TTOTC that *help* with the clues. This all leads me to suspect that there is a very cleverly hidden riddle that will tie *ALL* together and end at the blaze.

          • The thing I don’t understand is, how a searcher can know they are in the right place, when Mr. Fenn said that a searcher would not know they had the right WWWH, until they had the chest. It doesn’t make any sense??

          • I do believe there is a theme to the riddle. I hope I’ve got it. The theme does indeed tie together the entire poem with the keyword leading the way. There is also another, or a second related keyword that is also in the same riddle theme. The second word confirms the first keyword. Everything falls in place but it’s something that I researched for a while before it finally dawned on me. Gosh I hope I’m right on this solve….because I can’t imagine any other theme tying in all the words in the poem in a similar fashion and I will be crushed if it doesn’t work. The blaze ties in nicely as well bu mostly with clues from the book. It took more reading from the book for that one to finally sink in.

        • Ken ~ ‘ALL together’

          Here’s a WhatIF ~ using a word I think that may help… Manufacturing… we think of clue one slightly different.
          Is WWH an actual place?
          While fenn has repeated we need to “nail down” this clue, and.. searchers have ‘solved’ ‘deciphered’ ‘figured’ ‘indicated’ this clue, It has always been in conjunction with clue two, right-?- never by itself. Not that I can recall in a single statement about any clues that were solved.

          Is this the reason they didn’t know it? They knew where they were, why they were there because of clue two being a place… but what about clue #1? Is it the reasoning of this clue that pulls it ‘all together’?

          So my guess is you may say, it has to be a place or it can’t be the place to start… well, is it?
          We have been told we need to know where to start and we need to start at the beginning… are we missing or misunderstanding those two comment to be WWH and not the location of the clues themselves, as he warns in the book about certainty of the location of the ‘path’…

          I’m beginning to think WWWH is not so much a place as it is a reason. That reason is why we may need to nail that clue down… it brings it ‘all together’ the way fenn sees it and not so much the way we hope it supposed to be.
          I mean, how can some have four clues correct and they may now know it either?? That is 1/2 the poem… yet not once has fenn stated the first clue [ by itself ] has been actually nailed down – solved.
          That’s an oddie in my book.

          • If you’ve solved the first clue you’re over half way there, many people have solved the first clue and it is a physical location. See Mysterious Writings No 49

            I cannot tell you how many searchers have identified the first clue correctly, but certainly more than several. I cannot imagine anyone finding the treasure without first identifying the starting point, although many seem to be preoccupied with later clues. To me that’s just expensive folly. f

          • Eric,
            I’ll rephrase the first clue part of my comment;
            Not Solved the first clue ‘on it’s own.’

            Even the comment you posted stated ‘identified’ the first clue. A though, fenn has repeated the first “two clues” were solved, deciphered.
            That might be the starting point of the solve; as both first clues must be known and gives a specific place. The starting point.

            So what is it that stumped all by not knowing they got the first clue correct? Is it because they had a place to go to [ being the 2nd clue ] yet not understood what the first clue truly is -?- or is about?
            Which might be something from a past time that related to the area and/or the second clue.

            Sure, I guess we can call it a place, because some have stood there… yet again, is the place the same as fenn intended the first clue to represent… or did WWWH look different, and that is what fenn might be relaying to.
            Winning the solve mostly by imagination?

            Think of it this way… should someone be looking for the treasure down the road, lets say 1000 years or 5000… how would WWH stand out then?
            Seems to me if the first clue is the ‘one’ needing nailing down, it would be the same idea for any generation… whether it is there physically or just the remnants of it.
            Canyons can last millions of years… what about the waters?

            It kinda begs the question… what exactly was “identified”?

            FF: Those who solve the first clue are more than half way to the treasure, metaphorically speaking.
            What exactly is metaphorically? Why add that?

            All the other comments of clues solved relate only to the first two clues… the comment above doesn’t say anyone actually “solved” or had solved the first clue ‘on its own’… it states… “those who solve” ~ meaning anyone who ‘can’ actually solve it is more than 1/2 there. Which seems to imply a complete knowledge of what WWWH stands for, not just its reference.

            If that is true, and imo likely, would it explain why searcher ‘did not know’ they solved any clue thus far, on site, mentioning those clues, walking by everything else [clues] and the chest?

            I’ll throw this out for thought… Most of the clues were around when fenn was a kid, right? Almost all would think; at least ‘one clue’ would have to be later in fenn’s life, right?
            WhatIF it was ‘prior’ -?- to when fenn was a kid or even born, yet is no longer there.
            “A comprehensive knowledge of geography might help”? Making the very “first clue” available to be completely solvable for any generation.
            In this case.. the canyon is a physical location, the first clue explains the “unseen.”
            In theory……….

          • Seeker…I started this with only a few of the many comments about the first clue. I am certain you are aware there are many and that Fenn has exhausted himself saying the same thing over and over. START with the first clue…go back to the poem…etc. etc.
            My interpretation is that the first clue is a PLACE…why else would he say that there “are many PLACES where warm waters halt….” ? Makes sense to me. Sure, there is likely a reason/s why he chose this particular one out of the many…and likely that the spot where the treasure is hidden holds special meaning…but maybe not how some believe. He has said MANY PEOPLE have found the first clue…apparently they did not know it….and sure, you could say maybe it is metaphorical in that case. I believe the reasoning behind the prevalence of the first two clues being “figured/deciphered” is because they are synonymously *connected* and it would be unlikely for a searcher to identify the first and not the second. After that…well…it gets dicey doesn’t it?
            That is where the buck stops so far…even taking into account the “four clue” possibility. To me it is the same…the failure rate at that point is the same…100%.
            The question I might ask folks who may have gotten that far is(if we REALLY knew who)…Did you try going back to the first clue after being unsuccessful? OK…so maybe more than one question…If not…why? If yes…did you rethink what the “riddle” answer/s may be? I believe the correct answer would be that no one…repeat…no one has put the *entire * puzzle/riddle/poem together into a coherent, beginning to end, plan of execution that answers/satisfies the clues. And honestly…I do not think any amount of research is going to give anyone any answers after the first clue clue/second clue…maybe that is why it HAS to be nailed down or keep returning to it.
            Travis…I keep talking about this because this is where the Chase has stalled for almost eight years. And no…I am not saying where I believe wwwh is…that would be redoinkulous.

        • Ken,

          Again, I concur. It is my opinion that solving the poem riddle “big picture” puts you in an area that allows you to re-use the poem in a step by step fashion to secure Indulgence. That’s why you will have confidence in the wood – the botg experience confirms your ability to use your imagination. It seems to me that the architect took his time in building the poem so that we have to use it at least twice – once to get in the correct locale and once there, to “find the hidey spot.”

          Your mileage may vary,

          • I somewhat agree. Trip #1 takes you to within 200′ of Indulgence. Trip #2 takes you TO Indulgence. JMO – JDA

    • Ken what is your WWWH. What is your start. You keep talking about this. Where do you start your solve/ solves?

  24. Seeker-
    FF has said that people walked past the treasure chest “because they dodn’t know IT”. I think that if you cant identify “it” before you leave, you are wasting your time. On my last trip I was unsure of how to find “it” even though I think I was in the right area. Now that I believe I understand the first stanza, I think it will help.

    • Yep I agree the first stanza is very important. And you most def need to know what your looking for way before your boots hit the ground.

    • Flutterby,

      Do you have a link to the quote “because they don’t know IT”? I’d like to read it in context….


      • KK;

        Try this one:


        Hope it is the one you want – JDA

          • The quote reads: “Nobody is going to happen upon the treasure chest, you’re gonna have to figure out the clues in the poem and go to it. There are several people that have deciphered the first two clues. I don’t think they knew it, because they walked right on past the treasure chest…” JDA

      • KK-

        The quote you asked about can be found in an article found here. https://metro.co.uk/2013/03/08/forrest-fenn-and-the-raiders-of-the-stashed-gold-real-life-indiana-jones-stages-treasure-hunt-3531551/

        “There have been some who have been within 500 feet because they have told me where they have been. Others have figured the first two clues and went right past the treasure and didn’t know it.”

        Since I was looking this up for you anyway, I took the time to read over this entire interview and found a couple of very interesting things.

        “The haul of jewels – and a 20,000-word autobiography in a glass jar which can only be read by a magnifying glass – was acquired over a period of 12 years.”

        I find the idea of an autobiography that must be read with a magnifying glass to be very interesting. Obviously FF put it together in order to be small enough to fit into the TC. And, yet. . . it reminds me of the jar of olives that a classmate of Fenn’s brought to school and ate right in front of him. It was interesting the way FF described it in the book. Sort of random to mention something like that. “And then FF said, “What was that all about anyway?” IMO that jar of olives is a clue. I believe it is a geographical clue that we can understand if we understand the big picture of the story of the Rocky Mountains. I’m beginning to understand it and I think it has something to do with Olivine.

        Anyway; this Indiana Jones interview mentions another quote I’ve seen brought up recenty. People have been focused on the part of this quote that talks about the train and the banana tree. But, I think there is sometihng else unique about this quote. Here it is.

        ” There are three kinds of people. There are those who make things happen, there are those who watch things happen and there are those who don’t know what’s happening. The train doesn’t go past the banana tree but one time so I want to reach out and grab every banana I can.”

        I think this quote is a hint to the solution of the poem as well as a hint to what kind of a person FF is. He is the type that makes things happen. Other people watch things happen. Some people don’t know what is happening. This really fits with my belief that the poem is directing us to clues of something that is happening and in my belief that the story of the Rocky Mountains is contained in the rock formations and that is the “big picture” FF wants us to see. I think that if we cannot see the “big picture” of the RMs then we will never solve this poem.

        Well- anyway; there is the quote you asked about, plus a couple of other quotes that caught my attention in this interview.

        Happy Searching!

        • Flutterby,

          Thank you for your thoughts & the link to the article.

          I have enjoyed reading your thoughts related to solving the poem. I agree that the banana is important, as is the gypsy. My own solve is nearly complete, but summer is a busy month for families, and my ability to search my specific spot is hindered a bit at the moment…….but you know, it’s priorities. Sometimes you have to hold the phone. I think Fenn understand. 🙂

  25. I don’t comment very often on here, but here goes…This is all in my own opinion, but I don’t believe that you can know exactly what the blaze is before you see it. We can have an idea; maybe something that he has mentioned in his books , or a symbol, a rock formation that resembles something he has mentioned or even the letter f put somewhere visible. I believe he has said that a searcher could be within 12 feet of the blaze and know what it is . I think it is imperative to keep your mind open when you are out there and not have a predetermined idea of what the blaze is, but to remember all of the little subtle things that he has mentioned. Again, this is all in my opinion. Best of luck to all !

    • Veronica;

      You can find Forrest’s quote about 12′ here:

      Second, I have not said that a searcher was closer than 12’ from the treasure. It is not likely that anyone would get that close and not find it.

      You are a bit off when you say, “I believe he has said that a searcher could be within 12 feet of the blaze and know what it is .” Forrest does not even mention the Blaze – JMO – JDA

      • Sorry, JDA, that was in no way directed towards your comment. And thank you for putting that link up to the quote about 12’. I knew I had seen it somewhere…
        I try to respect everyone’s opinions on here and not discredit anyone.
        Let me try this again…
        In my opinion, you can be within 12 feet of the blaze and know it for what it is, if you keep your mind open

        • Utilizing sight of the blaze does not require one to be within 12
          feet of it, IMO.

        • Veronica,

          I recently mentioned the 12′ comment and find it curious that no one else seems curious why Forrest chose to follow up with the additional statement. He could have just left it at ” I have not said…”.
          That’s ok I guess, I’d rather it kill my solve than the cat!

          And how about this one: (paraphrasing)- “you can’t have a correct solve unless you can knowingly go to within several steps of the chest”. Doesn’t this imply that it is possible for someone, at some point, to be within several steps…just not “knowingly”?

          • I would agree with that. I don’t think the blaze is very big and you will know it when you are within those 12 feet.

  26. With my up and coming botg, I get very nervous and sitting on pins and needles, [metaphorically speaking], hoping that no one will find the TC in my search area before I get there. Maybe I’m overly excited about my visit to the area. How in the heck do you folks handle your venture out? I’m always a pretty much laid back person, but not this time. I wish my other half could have gotten her vacation quite a bit sooner.

    Every time a searcher returns I quickly read their solutions to see if they were withing the ball park of my search area and so far relieved that they weren’t even close. I wanted tranquilizers from my doctor to help with anxiety. Not really? Although a couple of fingers in a small glass of good Brandy helps at the end of the day. My wife may have to drive as I would be in too much of a hurry and get tickets for speeding.

    This is all fun’n, I’m still pretty laid back, but it’s the truth about that Brandy.

    I hope all stay safe while out and about. The best to all the up and coming searches.

    • Good Luck CharlieM – Hope you find – that which you seek – Have FUN, and TRY to STAY SAFE – JDA

    • I understand this sentiment very well. My trips not planned until end of July. When are you going?

    • I get more nervous when my botg. Grizz and moose are nothing to mess with. I followed Grizz tracks last week for almost 75 yards and they were fresh by at least 24hrs. Size of my foot. Ya a bit unnerving…

      • Yikes! They are my biggest fear in my search as well. Glad that you stayed safe!

      • Travis: how do you reconcile your solution with Forrest’s reply to Edward:

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

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

        Grizzly bears are dangerous, no matter how well prepared you are. In my opinion, if a grizzly bear encounter was even a mild possibility during a searcher’s trek from his car to the hiding place, it would be irresponsible of Forrest to claim the treasure chest is not in a dangerous place. And he certainly wouldn’t have brought up 3-year-olds as sensible treasure-hunting companions.

        • You are implying that Mr Fenn put the Chest in a place that has zero hazards? Any place in the Madison’s the Galatians Yellowstone, New Mexico. Has no hazards??, jeez one of my very first hunts in New Mexico when I lived there my dog woke me up to a Black Bear sniffing around my camp fire. Mr Fenn did not say it wasn’t sitting on a road side so you could pick it up from the safety of your car. You can’t take every sense of his word as literal.where the Chest is sitting and hidden not buried is not in a dangerous spot.

          Zap I will prove it when I bring the Chest home!

          • Travis;

            I will be glad when you get back from your search – Either the search will be ended, or your plate will be piled high with crow. Confidence is one thing – saying absolutely that “I will prove it when I bring the Chest home.” is just a bit too boastful don’t you think? Just my HUMBLE opinion – JDA

          • I feel extremely confident in my solve. Just today I proved a pattern in the TOTC that I am absolutely positive no one has figured out.

            If my confidence comes of f as boastful I apologize not my intention. If anything when I said that to ZAP it was jest. Having a bit of a poke back.. is all

          • Water under the bridge …right JDA? The Chase seems to have recognizable cycles. just different players in different times.

          • I’m just being an arrogant raven flying around yawkin is all. Lol Pg 64

          • Guys let me ask the question let’s say I do find it and bring it home how many of you will eat my crow for me. I would love a high five and a pat on the back.

            Gosh I love this chase. Ken I’ve been a player for a long time you just haven’t know it/me.

          • Ken – you are right – Water under the bridge. Good luck to you Travis – I hope that your new lead works out – JDA

          • That’s why I’m quiet in my corner.

            Absolutely sure? Only if I have the chest in my hand.

            Not before, thank you. I only chew beef from cattle.

          • But to participate in the discussion …

            I think it should not be a site with yellow bricks up to the chest.

            But I also do not think it’s a path of sharp stones on the edge of a cliff.

            I’ve been watching hiking videos on trails.

            What I’ve noticed is that most of them are pretty clean, with a few exceptions.

            As for hazards: FF seems to be a sensible and experienced man. A little trickster (it’s a compliment), but honest. Aware that it should promote an adventure and not a mortal sacrifice.

            If the road has hazards? Of course! Snakes, bears, wild animals, holes, branches, strong waters, falls, falls, fire, rain, snow, slips, get lost in the forest, and so many other things …

            Even taking care of the gardens of our yard we risk hurting ourselves!

            The researcher has to use common sense, follow safety rules and (say again) think: FF would walk around here?

        • “You are implying that Mr Fenn put the Chest in a place that has zero hazards?”

          No, I’m not. Forrest’s quote makes it clear that there is no such place. Probably the most dangerous part of retrieving the treasure chest is actually the drive to and from. (Just ask Diggin Gypsy about driving on ice-covered roads in winter!)

          “Mr Fenn did not say it wasn’t sitting on a road side so you could pick it up from the safety of your car.”

          Of course not — if he had, it would have been found in the first month. But he ALSO didn’t say it’s miles off into a forest away from any trails in an area that not only occasionally has grizzlies — they are frequent visitors. If any searcher has a solution that is more than a mile from civilization (i.e. the nearest road, trail or structure, as the crow files) into grizzly bear country, that qualifies as dangerous in my book.

          All of my searches (except the ridiculous exploratory first) have been in Montana, and while I’ve always carried bear spray, I never had any worries about unexpectedly encountering a bear, whether grizzly or black. The geography has made the possibility of surprise well nigh impossible.

          • It’s all fun and games until someone gets poked in the eye with a stick. Seriously…taking undue chances with ANY wildlife is just plain stupid. Forrest has said it is NOT in a dangerous place. Just because I have knowledge of dangerous places…doesn’t mean I’m going to overlook fenn’s warnings and traipse into bad situations for a box of baubles. You need some common sense out there in the wilderness…or it will get you faster than you can say boo.
            And Eric…this is Fenn’s baby we’re talking about…he has put out plenty of serious warnings to keep folks safe…not something he takes lightly.

          • Hi Sandy: finally a question I can safely answer! 🙂 My first “solutions” were really nothing of the sort — more, just throwing darts at a few WWWH/Canyon Down ideas in Yellowstone since I was planning to be there anyway. The ever-popular Ice House Canyon (pretty obvious WWWH-Canyon Down combo, but that’s as far as I could make it work), where Lava Creek enters Gardner Canyon, where Boiling River enters Gardner Canyon, and Lava Creek @ Undine Falls. In other words, fairly common newbie destinations.

          • Thanks Zap. I was reflecting today on what I will call, for lack of a better term, “the evolution of a searcher”. My first solution was Brown’s Canyon, for similar reasons. This journey has been incredibly humbling and also a great opportunity for growth and discovery. Best wishes in all you seek.

          • Sandy;

            I have kept a log since I first entered the chase Dec 23, 2015. Talk about an evolution. I was SOOOOO
            naive back then. Don’t know how much more “mature” my thinking is, but I certainly look at everything about the chase differently. WOW – What a trip. – JDA

          • Zap. Didn’t Forrest say recently that Grizzly Bears are a danger to be aware of, or words to that effect. I summits Ed that this means the chest is located in Grizzly country.

          • Hi Sandy: I certainly considered Brown’s Canyon (if you’re talking about the one on the Arkansas River in Colorado) — some good coincidences going for it (e.g. warm springs intersecting it, all those collegiate peaks nearby — Harvard, Yale, Princeton — “if you’ve been wise”). I also liked the Ouray area (Million Dollar Highway, ice climbing, and otherwise just plain beautiful). It’s certainly an evolutionary process, and it’s why I never worry about someone 2 or 3 months into the Chase hitting on the winning combination (though it’s certainly interesting to see what fresh eyes come up with!)

          • Hi John R: in the context of that quote from Forrest about grizzlies, I don’t think he was talking specifically about the chest’s hiding place, but rather that grizzlies do occupy a significant portion of the four-state search zone. Therefore, a good fraction of searchers are exposed to the possibility of an encounter.

            Forrest is too savvy to eliminate a state or two from the running by suggesting that grizzlies are a safety concern that the winning searcher should take into consideration (i.e. bear spray). He’s just saying, if you search in Montana or Wyoming, grizzlies are at least something to factor in.

          • Lug…Browns Canyon of the Arkansas. And pretty much every possibility within a 40 mile radius!

          • Sandy

            I prefer the Canon City area, don’t know if you are able to go there.

          • Lug – I live in Durango. Canon City is a hop skip and jump away. I’ve always avoided the area because prisons make me nervous.

      • Forrest grew up with black bears(shooting rubber suction arrows at a cub in his yard) and grizzlies as a small child. I think his definition of not in a dangerous place and ours would be a bit different. It’s a relative term and he probably isn’t as alarmed by them as someone not from the area. If you’re in or around Yellowstone searching then you’re likely to encounter bears wherever your search area is.

        • Hi Eric D: I’ve been to Yellowstone and surrounding areas a half dozen times in the last 3 years and I’ve never seen a bear, nor even bear tracks (though I would certainly love to see one). It’s like Dal and moose. 😉 In contrast, every time I’ve been to Glacier National Park, I’ve seen both black bears and grizzlies.

        • Thanks Eric whew helped with the tag teaming there on me. Listen I have such a solid solve if I shared everyone would be searching this area. With my solve I can prove every step 2 times of validation from the book. I honestly don’t mean to be arrogant and boastful.

          • Well Travis…maybe you might be better served just laying back instead of playing Tarzan here. Sooner or later Jane is going to call you in for dinner…and you know what that means. Eat what Jane cook…

          • 10/4 Ken. Roger out. Till I prove it!

            You’ll see.

            Good luck ya’all!

      • Lions and tigers and bears Oh My!

        All you Goldilockes get your skirts in a ruffle every year about this time.
        LOL more folks die from bees than spiders, which kills more people a year than all the big predictors combined over a decade.
        There are 750,000 black bears in the US… Most years, there are three fatal bear attack incidents on the **continent,** [North America] per year. But on average, this number decreases to 2.56 fatal incidents, per year.Jul 5, 2017 ~ There were 88 reported unprovoked shark attacks — five of which were fatal — in 2017. Good thing the chest is not underwater, right?

        I mean, the only place that is safe to search for the chest would be a nursing home… Oh wait… nursing home patients make up about 20 percent of deaths over age 65 as a result of an elderly **fall**.
        If you’re 64 or older, better stay clear of those places too.

        There was 40,000 highway fatalities in 2017 in the US.

        Maybe I’ll ride my bike to my solve.
        * In 2016, 18,477 cyclists were injured in reported road accidents, …
        Ah crap! I guess I’ll just have to hike and take my chances, and bring plenty of bug spray.

        • Copied from Wickipidea

          These are the largest population in the lower 48..

          Only about 1,500 grizzlies are left in the lower 48 states of the US.[30] Of these, about 800 live in Montana.[31] About 600 more live in Wyoming, in the Yellowstone-Teton area.[32] There are an estimated 70–100 grizzly bears living in northern and eastern Idaho.

          So if your TC hunting in any of the above states you are defiantly putting yourself in a dangerous place. Not including all the other hazards out there.

          • Top Ten „Killers“ worldwide:
            1. Anopheles-Moskito: 2.7million/a
            2. Humans in traffic: 1.2million/a
            3. Snakes: 50-100k/a
            4. Scorpions: 5k/a
            5. Crocodiles: 1k/a
            6. Elephants: 500/a
            7. Coconuts falling from trees: 150/a
            8. Hippos: 100/a
            9. Lions and tigers: 50/a
            10. Sharks: 15/a

            Not taken into consideration: mass shootings, war, hunger, natural desasters

            Still I guess the chance to die on your way to the chase or on your way from WWWH to HoB is a few times higher than in the wild!

            Nevertheless… STAY SAFE! And good luck!

          • I don’t know about Wickipidea- But I think those numbers are way off- There’s that total number of grizzles just around hungry horse reservoir and spotted bear area here in Montana.

          • Oh no, if I find the treasure chest, will a coconut fall, & hit my head – heavy loads?

        • Seeker…nice write up about the dangers/or odds of dangers in the wilderness. Even ONE mishap of any kind is not anything to scoff at…especially now that the Chase has gotten some undue attention due to the deaths that have already occurred.
          WATER accidents seem to top the list of things to think about, along with slips/falls, heart attacks, flash floods among others. It is interesting that EGO, along with inexperience have a very high rating in comparison to animal attacks etc. Folks pushing beyond their comfort zones and just not being adequately prepared.
          At any rate….Davey Boone and Daniel Crockett seemed to fare pretty well over the years and did not seem to suffer too much from lack of common sense. I’m sure they would be amazed by some of the modern sights to be observed out in OUR wilderness today!

          • Ha! ~ Davey Boone and Daniel Crockett

            Osborne Meek and Joe Russel would agree.

            Ok ..OK… It tickled my funny bone. My bad.

        • You are also at a higher risk of an STD in a nursing home. Between 2007 and 2011 rates of chlamydia rose 31% and rates of syphillus rose 52% among people 65 and over. I don’t think they are getting STD’s playing canasta.

      • Saw lots of grizz tracks myself too, along with bison and elk skulls, bones, and fur. I was carrying my bear spray in those areas.

        • I see every mention — in any blog/forum about the FF treasure
          hunt — of *brandy* as a hint, which I treat as likely to be
          deliberate. IMO.

    • Stay safe out there Charlie. I think we all share your thought. We don’t mind being wrong. Being second to “your” location is a tough pill to swallow for anyone. I tell my wife, I don’t mind being wrong. It’s being correct and second that I do mind. lol

    • CharlieM…good hunting to you and if your solve is *correct* you should have absolutely nothing to be anxious about. We are almost 8 years into this…well you know the rest. Given the odds so far…TWO correct solves would be beyond astronomical. I always occupy my pre-search time by lining up side trips and other fun things to see and do while out and about.

    • I know the feeling. Last year I got a speeding ticket in Idaho on my way to search.

      Did some recon / searching yesterday and today. There is so much mud still it has been a bit hard to get around. It took about 5.5 hours to travel down a creek and back for a total of about 4 miles.

      • Hi Aaron…how did the recon go overall? Do things still seem to fit for an all out blitz when you go on your search?

        • Hi Ken, it was good thanks. It was still pretty muddy out there so I didn’t get everywhere I wanted. I ended up running out of time on my last day. I do now have a better idea of where to search as a result though 🙂 Things do seem to fit still so far. Thanks for asking.

          • Welcome back – Glad the recon went well. Good luck in a later search – JDA

  27. I just galloped by the cement pond on my trusty steed Cubby Cadet. The three ladies were not impressed as they continued, one on her iphone, one on a laptop and the other was texting on whatever that device is. The only one to look my way was Missouri sitting there with that knowing look that all shepherds seem to have. Can’t wait for my granddaughter to get here…she notices.

    • Like you – I am speechless….
      If bidders will bid almost $1700.00 for 3 books, a map and a coin, what would they bid for the treasure? 1.7 million? OR MORE??? JDA

      • Its who they think you are, right? Like buying a full page ad in an Art mag, no? God bless capitalism.

      • I suspect bidding will go high for everything in that chest. Even more if it’s tagged as being donated to charity.

        • That sir is a guess. No one knows the answer to that until it is found and put on the block. JMO – JDA

    • Cowlazars

      You have put together a good offering, nice job.

      You also had a great idea for the commemorative coin. There won’t be another Fenn auction like this. Really great job.

      You also have put a lot of work in and many enjoy your videos.

      It’s great to see you get a little something out of all your efforts.


    • the fennboree III map number 1 of 250 makes no sense if there were only 112 made, regardless, with the numbered items being the first and first after forrest makes this a very desirable collection. i foresee this going considerably higher in the remaining four days.
      consider what this collection will auction for the next time it changes hands.
      i will never part with indulgence but i can imagine that it would bring tens of millions at auction even void of the contents.
      the bronze beauty with the entire contents intact, unimaginable.
      what about indulgence and contents… unopened?
      what someone would pay to be the first to open the tc if temptation could be resisted.
      what do you think?

      • If one plans to give the bracelet back to Forrest, they would HAVE to open Indulgence wouldn’t they? So I guess that if you found it you would not return the bracelet? Your actions would be guided by your want to make the most money? How could one guarantee that it was unopened, and thus pay more? Seems a foolish argument to me. But, that’s just me – JDA

      • Unopened; would have to be sealed or locked. Meaning no one has seen what is actually inside, even by the finder, after the chest was placed at it hide. [ for auctions purpose ].
        Problem is we know the chest was left unlocked and the key is inside.
        Should the finder decide to ‘auction’ the chest and its contents, it would be a better option to list the contents, right down to the last coin, quality of the precious jewels and any information of artifacts, as well as quality and quantity of the gold nuggets… a few of which would bring more interest [collectable] because of size, rather that weight.

        I’ll add; depending on the year of the find, a few items may jump in value because of what they are [ a coin for instants ] and to get the biggest bang out of an ‘auction’ sell the items separately [based on the story behind them, TTOTC]. Personally, I’m gonna put it on shelf and let my wife do as she pleases when I’m dead and gone…
        With one exception… I’d publish the autobiography.
        And maybe buy a Goofy’s ~ Weemeemageeme mouse pad. I wonder if Sasha has senior citizen discounts?

      • a lot better Ken – the pain in my neck from radiation is getting better – all my skin from ny neck is raw – it hurts but not as bad as it did at first the dr said to stay in side my house so I wont catch something bad but im fine Ken maybe they got it all I wont know till sometime this month when I get my catskan thanks for asking Ken – makes me feel better

        • Glad you are doing OK Frank. Hope you get a good report from the Dr. later in the month – Hang in there guy – JDA

          • Thanks JDA – sorry you didn’t find the tc – I found something better then that – and that is people that support and care for my well being and that’s people on this blog thanks

          • You are more than welcome Frank. Life is good my friend, even on the darkest days, there is a ray of sunshine – Take care – JDA

        • Frank, I’m glad you’re feeling a little better. My fingers are still crossed!

          • thanks Jennie – I can always count on you to be with me when I most need you thanks for support

        • Frank. Try a product called bag balm. You might find it at Walmart. It is for cow udders however, I found it works exceptionally well for skin care. Try a small spot first.

          • Timw thanks but cancer dr gave me a bag with a kit that has all of what I need it works but the kemo burns were real bad so its coming alone ok but to me its just not fast enough – but it is getting better – thanks tim

          • I totally agree Tim. Best product on the market. It has lanolin, as well as an antibiotic. Protects and heals burns wonderfully well, and keeps the wound moist so scabbing is less of a problem. Try it Frank – JDA

  28. Eric D, Black Bears wont bother you. We hike the back country of Yosemite all the time. Walk right past bears. As long as we dont threaten them, they hardly know we are there. Grizzlies scare me though. Hope bear spray really works!

  29. I saw the term “put-and-take fishing” today and it inspired me to read and re-read the poem several times over. Upon my reading I discovered that the use of certain words I’d never thought to be clues or hints before I am beginning to suspect could be.

    • And to add to that, a Meek was apparently a high-class fishing reel that one would avoid using in rough waters. Manufactured in Kentucky in the 1850’s IIRC.

  30. Seeker, You brought up the need to start at the beginning. I think that fits with my thoughts regarding rock formations which contain the history of the Rocky Mountains. The “beginning” in looking at the “big picture” (that we have been told to do, begins with the history of the RM IMO.
    I belive that when FF says the clues are “straight forward” he is talking about “forward” in time. “Sooner or later we all become the remnants of history or an asterisk in a book that was never written” FF.

  31. Eric D, You mention the quote about more than several researchers identifying the first clue correctly. Wonder if it has occured to anyone that this statement ONLY says that people have identified the clue itself. It does not say that anyone has the answer to the first clue. Just something to think about.

  32. I know that this possibly sounds a silly question?

    Can any of you guy’s tell me if bear spray can work on other animals and can it be used on grizzly.

    Stay safe guy’s

    Ronnie the Scot

    • Bear spray is a pepper spray that works on all animals with eyes and sensitive nose or tongue… the effect is not clear but chances are okay that your oponent runs away to recover… yes you should have it for grizzly!

    • There are plenty of sites and vids on the internet explaining proper use of bear spray. Anyone planning on carrying it should familiarize themselves. The only time it should be used is if/when one feels threatened by an animal. Use on a non-threatening animal is simple cruelty. It’s sole purpose is to buy the user time to retreat to safety. Animals have every right to be in the wilderness, and use by humans of spray on non-threatening animals is unethical. Actually, the wilderness can benefit from the judicious use of bear spray on certain humans.

      There are multiple methods by which one can avoid an encounter with threatening wildlife and people going into the wilderness should familiarize themselves with those techniques.

      That said, bear spray can be more effective than a firearm in deterring an advancing bear or mountain lion (though cats usually attack from above and behind). If one thinks they need to use it on bison, I’m guessing he/she is doing something wrong.

      Note that in TTOTC, in ‘Looking for Lewis and Clark’, apparently bear spray was not required for a safe journey well into grizz country for several days.

      Personally, I would not hike in MT without it, primarily due to the presence of grizzly.

  33. If a guy was born in 1810 and died 1879 at the age of 42…how is that possible?

  34. Does anyone think that there might be Mr Fenns bronze Bells or Jars within proximity of TC?

    • Travis;

      I would think not. Why confuse the issue. The treasure is meant to be found, where-as the bells and jars are buried so that it is not likely that they will be found for hundreds, if not thousands of years. But what do I know? NADA – JDA

      • JDA,

        How do you know for sure the Chest is not Buried, could well be, as the mountains and CREEKS do change.

      • I was thinking the same thing. But I have spotted something in Mr Fenns den that I would love to have if it is what I think it is.

        In his window sill directly in front of his recliner he is pictured in many pictures I believe is a Glorieta Meteorite. I have spent many hours near canoncito NM searching for this particular meteorite. I have found many smaller pieces but none over 2 lbs. I spent many nights in the hills of Glorieta. The Sante Fe trail runs right thru there. This area is also know for its small Spanish mission as well as early Spanish hunters. I located 3 metal ropes arrowheads from this area, it is also know for the battle of Glorieta a small skirmish of the civil war. I love this mountain pass headed north just outside of Sante Fe NM.

        • very true Travis…that area is steeped in some extremely interesting history. Some folks have come out of that area with some cool stuff.

          • I was on the south ridge once just on the boundaries of the battle scene area off of Apache Canyon, and came across a Native American man having a ceremony in a small cave. I witnessed from a distance his chants, words and actions motions were mesmerizing. That day was one of my most cherished memories from hunting for the Glorieta meteorites.

          • Is the meteorite site on public lands? I would like to make combo trip for indulgence and space rocks. Might find something worthwhile anyway.

          • Fishbowl: much of the Glorieta Mountain meteorite strewn field is on private land, but some of it is public. Accurate strewn field maps are (understandably) difficult to come by. The public coordinates (35d 36′ N, 105d 48′ W) are a starting point, but that doesn’t tell you the extent or orientation of the long axis of the strewn field. Glorieta has been hit hard by most of the top meteorite hunters in the world, so finding specimens these days is not easy. I know a crew of a half dozen who just spent 4 days there and came up empty, and they are very experienced.

          • Fishbowl, aren’t earth rocks “space rocks” or doesn’t the Earth float through space? Just wondering. 🙂

    • yup, discussed before. Probably at one of the later clues if there is. Does Bighorn give an idea? 🙂

  35. TLo and aardvarkbark,

    Thanks guy’s on your advice on using bear spray.

    Stay safe

    Ronnie the Scot

  36. Hi everyone,

    I am starting a new series called “Coincidence or hint? Uou decide.”. I am using the poem combined with the book to locate hints and avoid the rabbit holes. I try not to add my opinion (too much, lol), but want you guys and gals to decide if there is a method to my madness!

    I think it will help a lot of people make sense of things… If the poem is a map to the treasure, why can’t it also be a map to the hints in the book? In the first video I provide 3 examples…


    What do you think?

    • WyMustIGo

      How about the TOTC being the map and the Poem being the guide, the road map that leads you to the direction and resting place of the chest. I believe that from the beginning to the end of the book is a complete map.

      • Yeah, I think the poem is a map to the book (because the chapters he says are not in order to aid the searcher) and a map to the treasure. I think thats why there are two Omegas. Omega doesn’t just mean the end, it means the end of a series.

        The lead in sentence ends with a colon, and colons are used by definition to introduce a “series”.

        The mystery has two series, one is optional:

        A) Use the poem (a series of stanzas/lines) to locate the hints to help with the clues. The hints help with the clues, but on their own they do not lead to the treasure.


        B) Use the poem to get to the treasure AFTER you have solved the series of 9 clues (using the optional hints from the first time you ran the poem for step A).

        We can skip A, he told us so. But I think the book hints provide clarity to help expose the true meaning of the clues in the poem that are very vague.

        The hints are subtle and indirect. I do not believe that the real hints use place names (for example, Yellowstone Park, Madison River, and West Yellowstone are not hints… they are not subtle at all).

        Page 109 is an excellent example because he is describing why he left the Kachina Store in NM. The hint is not the store, nor is it canyon road, the hint to me leans more towards giving you an idea of a place that Forrest might consider “not for the meek”. Clearly those signs pissed him off, just like the “wet paint” sign in Central Park NY that Forrest mentions in the video Dal created. This is how Forrest feels, and its his feelings that matter in the poem clue solutions. Its not what we consider no place for the meek, its what Forrest considers it to be.

        Perhaps the treasure is on a border. He left his treasure where? He left it “there”. The location might have things that make him feel unwelcome, so he left it there at a border of something. For example, maybe home of Brown is ALL of Yellowstone and he put it in the Shoshone NF just outside the southern border of Yellowstone Park?

        In TTOTC, Forrest says (paraphrased):
        + He lies in the book 15% of the time, but his treasure story is true!
        + The book has hints, we know this 100% because he says it in the book
        + He says the hints are “sprinkled”, which kind of means not in order

        Does he mislead us? No
        Then why does the book have all these NON HINT abarrations?

        My opinion: You are seeing some the 15% of the time he only tells some of the truth.

        But isn’t that misleading? No, because he told you up front.

        We need to remember this is a “treasure hunt”, a mystery, the book and poem go hand in hand as a complete package. You have the poem, a map, it leads to the chest. BUT, the poem has no legend like a good map does… the legend is in the book.

        So why did he leave all the rabbit holes?
        My opinion: Because in this mystery he wants to throw off people looking for shortcuts. All they are doing is reading the book and picking out the hints that are NOT subtle. Forrest knows the plot to Bell Tolls, he knows Redford wrote a book. These are not subtle and are part of the 15% meant to throw off the casual reader from locating the real hints.

        So where in TTOTC does it tell you to use the poem as a map to the book?

        My answer: Right in the very first hint… The sentence that ends with a colon right before the poem. That sentence does not end until the end of the chapter, right where he tells you the stuff is “sprinkled within the stories”.


        Lead in sentence : + (poem) + end of chapter =
        Here is the poem that leads to TWO things 1) The end of my rainbow, AND 2) The treasre. To me that says to solve the clues, use the poem with the book to locate the hints.

        Does this mean people using the book have an advantage? Of course it does, and that reflects what he has always said. Why? Because he is telling you that the book has hints to help with the clues, and we know its true because the story about the treasure is “the truth” according to him.

        • On the 85%, 15% thing, you might want to check scrapbook 155 here on this site, where Fenn says “I was very careful not to say I needed to be correct only 85% of the time. Read it again, middle of page 14. It doesn’t help to stretch a tangent. f”

          Fenn wrote “Besides, non-fiction writers don’t have to be right BUT 85% of the time and everybody knows that. How else can a person write a book?”

          So what’s he really saying here?

          • Daniel,
            You’re not going to get many to chime in here. They need that as an excuse. Some may not like the word ‘excuse,’ but I don’t see it any other way.

            However, I’ll toss in a couple pennies in the pot for thought.
            fenn tells all; “…among these pages are as true to history as one man can average out that truth, considering the fact that one of my natural instincts is to embellish just a little.” And in addition wrote the about nonfiction authors, as you posted above.

            I think fenn is saying that he is being above the bell curve of honesty more than the average non-fiction author… yet later explains… “I tend to use words that aren’t in the dictionary, and others that are, I bend a little.”

            IMO, this / these are important pieces of information of how fenn presents stories and the poem as truthful, yet in a way that makes the reader grin and cringe as to how he wrote it.

            Fenn later made a comment about the poem in such a manner; “I looked up words and definition of words and changed them, went back and rebooted… [ fenn stated he looks word up on google, hence ‘rebooted’ ]… It [the poem] turn out exactly like I wanted.
            He change words [ word usages of different wordings ] to get it just right… to make it difficult but not impossible to figure out. Some Example only would be Warm or Halt or Home… are they what we think they are… lol some still say house of Brown.

            To me, it’s not about ‘not’ tell but 85% of the truth as most would think. It’s about how we don’t know/understand the plain english words we use everyday… which fenn as also implied. Well, not implied… he actually stated that.

            Summary; He’s telling the truth, we just need to understand the truth… difficult, but not impossible… because as he stated; every word in the poem was deliberate. It be risky to discount them.

      • I made a long reply, and for some reason I can’t post it here. So I added your question and my reply to the video (it is pinned at the top).

        • Wy, I just wanted to post on your 15% comment. I’ll check out the madness another time, but as far as the 15% lying thing, I don’t think that is something to be thought of.

          First, f never said he lies 15% of the time in the book. In fact, I don’t think f has ever said he lies. What I believe he said was non fiction writers only tell the truth 85% of the time. The question would be if f considers himself a non fiction writer. Or it can be totally nothing. It’s definitely not something searchers should think is going on, (f lying 15% of the time).

          There are 148 pages in the book, 15% of the would be roughly 22. So, are we to believe that 22 pages in the book are a lie? Maybe it’s what is on page 22, a pic of f when he was 13. This pic has been manipulated, but are we to think that f was a liar at 13, or the pic is a lie? It forms a paradox. F saying he is a liar, meaning he is lying, so he tells the truth that he is a liar, and round, and round, it’s a paradox. Maybe that is why he said 85% truth. 85% of 148 is 126. Whatever is on page 126 is the truth. A picture of the chest. This is all one way to look at it. I don’t think f is using some info as lies to throw searchers off. We need to take him at his word, or what’s the point? If we are to expect him to lie to us, even 1% of the time, what good is his word and the chase? If we are to think about 15% of what he says as lies, then your last line, “Because he is telling you that the book has hints to help with the clues, and we know its true because the story about the treasure is “the truth” according to him.” Then couldn’t this be a lie? Like I said, a paradox.

          As far as solving all the clues, then you have the ATF to wrestle with about how f has not given us info to solve some of the clues correctly. Some of the clues may not have to be answered, just found. Especially since f has not given the info, we can’t solve.

          Lastly, you said, “So why did he leave all the rabbit holes?
          My opinion: Because in this mystery he wants to throw off people looking for shortcuts.

          I don’t think f left rabbit holes. We end up creating rabbit holes, but f has been straight forward. Any rabbit holes are from the mind of the searcher, not f. People could look for shortcuts all they want, I don’t think f needed to spend time trying to throw these searchers off. They would be off anyway. If I was new to the search, I would not put a thought in f lying, or telling the truth 85% of the time. That thought alone would throw you far off the path. Above are just examples of what could be meant. May be nothing, only f knows, don’t fall into the proverbial, paradoxical rabbit hole of your own worst enemy….

          • What makes you believe the photo on p. 22 has been manipulated? And for what purpose?

          • The important thing is the story about the treasure is true, so we know he didn’t embelish anything with it.

            The semantics of lying vs telling the truth only 85% of the time are not important when the fact is you can’t rely on 15% of the information to be truthful.

            In any case the videos are about interpreting the poem and using it on the book. I disagree with you that you cannot find all the answers with just the book and the map, the goes against everything he has said regarding the poem.

            I am in no rabbit hole, I have plenty of experience knowing how to detect that 🙂

          • yeah Wy, I will watch the video. Should have first. My post was not to critique but inform. I didn’t succeed. I’m a lousy writer. Anyway, yes, the 85-15 thing just isn’t that important, that’s what I was trying to say.:).

            To your comment:
            I disagree with you that you cannot find all the answers with just the book and the map, the goes against everything he has said regarding the poem.

            The thing is there is an ATF you must then address.

            You have said to read the poem and read TTOTC to help solve for the 9 clues. We all know there are many options to choose from regarding, Brown, hoB, wwh, and blaze hinted at in the book. My question is, “In the book, do you also, in a more subtle way, tell which is the correct answer to one or all of the above?” ~BW
            No I don’t madam, sorry. F

            If he doesn’t give the correct answer, then you can’t answer those questions. Not until you have the chest, in which all the answers should then be obtainable. This is what I was trying to point out as far as the clue solving purists, and the ability to solve all the clues correctly. It cannot be done, not until you have the chest. That’s why I say trying to solve all the “clues” is a rabbit hole. I’m just terrible at trying to express it. Or communicate it.

            If there is an attempt to solve the poem that is one thing, if it is to solve all the clues correctly, that’s another. If a person’s solve of the poem is to try to solve clues 1, then 2, then 3, and so on to 9, they will not and cannot get a solve. Fenn flat out says it. If you need clue 1 to get two clue, to get clue 3, and so on to 9, it cannot be done. That is the rabbit hole. The reason is that we know two clues for sure, the blaze, and wwwh, and he includes those two things in the ATF as not being able to be solved correctly.

            I’m not trying to put anyone’s solve down or anything, it’s just there are things that need to be addressed and not ignored. This ATF, even though a lot of searchers tend to ignore it, is a wrench in the cogs of the “solve the 9 clues” solvers. Everyone can twist it however they want, doesn’t matter to me, but it is what it is, and the searcher needs to answer for it. Anyone who says that they have a solve for all the 9 clues is full of it, because there is no solve for a couple of those clues. Especially the first.

            Don’t get it twisted though, that is for the first timers. With BotG, a searcher may have an idea. and may be correct, as far as the 9 clues, but cannot be positive. Everything is a coincidence until you have the chest. So, whoever can say they have all 9 clues, the truth is, they don’t know even the starting point for sure. (ala, solving the clues compared to solving the clues correctly). There is no knowing what the blaze looks like, or what he really means by hoB. And, trying to solve for wwwh is cannot be done going clue to clue. A starting point cannot be established until you have solved the poem and you know where you are going, IMO.

          • Charlie;

            I just can not agree that there is no solve for wwwh and for the blaze. If the poem can not lead you to wwwh you are throwing darts, and that is just NOT the way to solve ALL of the riddles. There IS a way to solve wwwh, and I hope to prove it in the not too distant future. The same for the blaze. There may not be a specific line or word in the poem that leads one to the blaze, but clues and hints lead one to the place that the blaze can be found, AND the poem and TTOTC and TFTW give hints that tell the searcher WHAT to look for.

            You state as fact,” Fenn flat out says it. If you need clue 1 to get two clue, to get clue 3, and so on to 9, it cannot be done. That is the rabbit hole. The reason is that we know two clues for sure, the blaze, and wwwh, and he includes those two things in the ATF as not being able to be solved correctly.” When and where does Forrest “flat out says ie. If you need clue 1 to get two clue, to get to clue 3 and so on to 8, it can not be done.” WHERE has Forrest EVER said this?

            You then say, “The reason is that we know two clues for sure, the blaze, and wwwh, and he includes those two things in the ATF as not being able to be solved correctly.” Again when has Forrest EVER said such a thing? Can you quote your source? I have never read such a thing.

            Forrest has said just the opposite. He has said,
            ““So I wrote a poem containing nine clues that if followed precisely, will lead to the end of my rainbow and the treasure.” f He didn’t say except wwwh and the blaze – he said ” nine clues that if followed precisely, will lead to the end of my rainbow and the treasure..”

            Sorry Charlie, it is you who has fallen into a VERY deep rabbit hole – JMO – JDA

          • Charlie;

            If wwwh can not be solved, is Forrest lying when he says: “Hello Forrest
            May I ask – is it still true that now, even with searcher numbers doubling in the last year, you still don’t know of anyone who has solved beyond the first two clues?
            Dear Emily
            Searchers continue to FIGURE OUT THE FIRST TWO CLUES and others arrive there and don’t understand the significance of where they are. f

            Makes no sense Charlie – and this is only one of about 20 such quotes where Forrest says that people have figured out/deciphered etc. the first two clues. How do you explain this Charlie? JDA

          • Hi JD –

            I believe Forrest is referring to the clues themselves when he says “clues” and NOT the solve for the clue that establishes a geographic location.

            So. People continue to identify WWWH as the first clue and the same people are also properly identifying the 2nd clue. They fail to continue properly identifying clues.

            Fell free to look them all up. You will see that Forrest never says arrived at the location. He only ever says, arrived at the clue. Am I right? Or do you have a Fenn quote that says something that can only be interpreted as physically in the landscape as opposed to in the poem??

            You are free to interpret went right past the remaining seven as you see fit. Food for thought is all.

          • Here you go Lug:

            “1Q) Even today, after more than six years of people searching, and after all the news coverage, articles, and stories written about your secreted treasure, some people are just learning about your Thrill of the Chase treasure hunt and getting involved. It continues to inspire. Do you have any advice for these new people? How should they begin the search six years after so many others? Do you feel they are at any disadvantage?
            No, fresh eyes and new thinking might provoke a winning idea. I would advise new searchers to look for the clues in my poem and try to marry them to a place on a map. It seems like the longer one thinks about the search the more they complicate the problem.”

            “Look for the clues in the poem” This matches your idea Lug – but then he goes on to say – ” and try to marry them to a place on a map.” To me, this says that the clues “in the poem” (your line of thinking” must THEN become places on a map – “physical locations” (my line of thinking) that must be traveled to.

            If one never puts BotG, and the Clues never become physical locations, how can Indulgence ever be found? Is Indulgence not a physical thing? In a physical place? Waiting to be found by you physically going to that place? Just askin’ JDA

  37. Tim M,
    I agree with you that a geographical feature is involved. And it is one that has lasted a long time and will continue to last a long time. IMO

  38. Well… add Billy’s name to the list of the crow eaters tribe. I went. I saw.. I come back empty handed…What kind of dipping sauce goes best with crow nuggets I wonder?

    Still, I firmly believe Mr. Fenn’s cache will be found soon. I don’t know if it will be found by July, but I will go on record to bet it will be found by March.
    (See Mr. F two can play this game) 🙂

    I can take the razing here on HOD…but the snickering by those leprechauns (aka “the boys”) is driving me nuts.

    Charlie, let me know when you are headed out and I’ll have the Deputy sweep out your cell..

    Best regards to all; (I think I might have a crow bone stuck in my gizzard)

    1F Billy and the Deputy

    • Well, Sherif;

      JMO but I don’t think that you deserve a full serving of crow. I didn’t hear you crowin’ much before you headed out. Crow is reserved for those that do a whole bunch of crowin’ before they go out – JMO Welcome back safely – Hope you had a great time – Sorry you didn’t lassuoo what you were a hopin’ to – Maybe next time – JDA

    • I agree with JDA, staying modest when you search allows you to come back without eating crow. It’s the braggards that typically do the crow eating. Stay humble – no crow tasting required.

      • Thanks JDA and Covert…

        It was very pleasant to be back up there in the mountains. It’s a very lovely place.


        • Sherif Billy –

          Can you share where you were searching?
          I do not recall how much you have shared at the HOD. Are you still interested in the same state? Same general area as a year ago? Or have you moved on to something new?


          • Dear Mr. Nutz-

            You are a rascal for asking me that. I have been sitting here for 15 minutes deciding how to answer that question….So, I think I’ll take a pass on answering that…other than it was 1404 miles RT from my stomping ground. Maybe I would be better at playing Canasta…..

            Best regards;
            1F Billy

          • Hmmm Sherif

            I think you are getting your bridges confused.

            You know there is a reason you always want to make sure that you are indeed walking out onto a bridge and not a pier.


        • 1 F,

          Veni, vidi, no vici; no shame, ‘cept one might think
          that “pathologist” meant one who is on the path
          (figuratively only, of course) to the treasure?

          Also, can the deputy arrest you if you exceed the
          speed limit on your marathon drive to your search
          area? Inquiring mind wants to know. Thanks for
          leaving the treasure safe. Ronnie is gonna get it!
          IMO of course.


          • Mr. DC-

            You are correct!!! By definition, a “pathologist” must be someone who studies the “path”. Too bad I wasn’t a very good student. My Deputy has quoted me saying…

            “Don’t bother me with that darn map or compass.., I’m busy trying to blaze a trail”…..

            (I have always found it hard to stay on a “path” or any task for that matter)

            Best regards;
            1F Billy

    • Sherif B….how many “cells” do you have? It may get pretty cramped in there !
      Glad you got out and scratched the itch and I hope it was a grand trip anyway !

      • Thanks Ken–

        I’ll make some room and let some prisoners out for good behavior.. Then I’ll have room for all of you…and while your awaiting trial, I’ll get the Deputy to cook her specialty…”Aves de Corvidae”….some sort of fancy French dish…..


          • If a bunch of you fellas show, I bet we could have her to make Weihnachten bedeckte Straßenapfelkuchen ….which is a unusual German dessert I’ve had only one time before.


  39. Thanks Z. Sounds like other sites in NM and other states may be more productive.

    • For first time meteorite hunters, I recommend dry lake beds in California and Nevada (for visual searching), or Gold Basin in Arizona south of Lake Mead for metal detector searching. But I get the attraction of making an attempt at Glorieta given its proximity to Forrest.

  40. I have a theory about this question:

    Mr. Fenn: How far is the chest located from the blaze? ~ casey

    Casey, I did not take the measurement, but logic tells me that if you don’t know where the blaze is it really doesn’t matter. If you can find the blaze though, the answer to your question will be obvious. Does that help?f

    Forrest has already told us the distance, but nobody noticed. I have a very convincing theory.

    Does anyone have any ideas??

        • How far did FF say researchers were?

          So the “obvious” answer. The answer we already know.

          And I think FF gave more than he should, all this time.

          And that also tells us “what” is the blaze.

          • What he gave us was 2 sets of numbers. He gave us 200’ and also 500’ I don’t think the Blaze is going to be 200’ from the Chest. Look quickly down…
            X marks the spot. Blaze marks the spot. The chest is where someone can get all the lines to cross. IMO

          • Travis,

            If you read the poem and “obey exactly” what it says, you will realize that “blaze” is far from the last clue, much less the specific location of the chest.

            It has an asterisk hidden in the poem, with a footnote, and no one has seen it.

            Literal reading of the poem.

            My opinion only.

            McB ; )

          • Well I’m not seeing what you are I see a whole straight forward comment. Sorry.?.?.

    • To answer your question McB; “Does anyone have any ideas?”

      FF said; “While it’s not impossible to remove the blaze it isn’t feasible to try, and I am certain it’s still there”

      So I’ll ask this question. If the treasure chest is not associated with any structure; then how can the distance between the blaze and chest be so obvious.

      My idea is that the blaze is a visual site at the end of the trail and if you depart from this area you then depart from the blaze. So, if you’ve been wise and found the blaze, look…. quickly down. All of course, IMO.

      • The chest itself is not associated with any structure. IMO, means its not in ,around or under any type of structure. So don’t go destroying things. However the blaze, nearby but not at the resting chest, could be a structural thing. A museum, historical marker,library, totem pole, ect. IMO

      • I take it further, with a head-nod to Cynthia: I don’t think ANY of the clues are associated with structures. And I definitely don’t think the blaze is manmade.

        • Zap–

          I am sorry you are mistaken….the blaze is man made out of natural local objects…..IMO….. Oh and the reason why it will be obvious of the distance between the chest and the blaze….psssst it’s a secret……….(the blaze isn’t in the mountains) IMO but True….. pass the kettle corn IMO IMO

          Hope that helps;

          1F Billy

    • McB
      I have a question?
      After rereading the poem a gazillion times, line 1 of stanza 4 is written in a way to suggest that once you have reached water high you were wise and found the blaze. Could it be that the blaze is the trail?
      FF was asked this question: Is the Blaze one single object? He answered, “in a word – Yes.” So what does this really mean? FF also has said “While it’s not impossible to remove the blaze it isn’t feasible to try, and I am certain it’s still there” What would last 100 years at this specific location? The trail is a blaze “in a word. ” FF describes…. , “If I was standing where the treasure chest is, I’d see trees, I’d see mountains, I’d see animals. I’d smell wonderful smells of pine needles, or pinyon nuts, and sagebrush, …”
      If the Blaze has to be located before you can find the chest… Why does Stanza 3 end with “Just heavy loads and water high?”

      Why no hints or clues to find the blaze?

      • There ARE hints and clues to help a searcher to “find the blaze”.
        But FF wants the finder to EARN the reward. FF would not casually give away a million dollars to someone who worked for him for, say, ten hours. It could take hundreds of hours to solve the poem correctly, and FF has said that about 4 BOTG searches are likely
        to be required by the eventual finder. I tend to agree with that

        And being lazy is not the ticket. Have you used a dictionary to look
        up “halt”, for example? I have. I also looked up “gone”, “alone”,
        “bold”, “secret”, “hint”, etc. (I hope you get the picture). I am
        reasonably well-educated and more than 40 years old. I looked up a lot of the poem’s common words that I thought I already knew pretty well, because my intent in this hunt was/is to beat FF at his own game. I am optimistic so far. Please don’t give up too easily.

        The above is all part of my opinion. Yours may differ.

        • Could you please provide a source for the quote:
          “FF has said that about 4 BOTG searches are likely
          to be required by the eventual finder”

          • Having trouble finding that quote tf?
            I’m sorry but I don’t think Fenn ever said it.

      • If the distance between blaze and TC is obvious, this distance must be known in advance.

        Is a trail an object? “In a word, yes.”

        Can it be removed? “It may … but it is not viable … and ‘still’ is there.” (or in the distant future maybe it will not be there anymore!?!?)

        The only distance beforehand we have is that researchers have passed 200/500 feet of treasure.

        If you find blaze (the trail where researchers passed) you will obviously be 200/500 from the TC.

        IMO no facts, yet.

        • McB;

          The quote in question reads:
          “Mr. Fenn: How far is the chest located from the blaze? ~ casey
          Casey, I did not take the measurement, but logic tells me that if you don’t know where the blaze is it really doesn’t matter. If you can find the blaze though, the answer to your question will be obvious. Does that help?f

          You say, “If the distance between blaze and TC is obvious, this distance must be known in advance.”

          From the above, IF you find the blaze THEN the distance to the TC will be obvious. Just because you have found the blaze – you probably did NOT know in advance the distance to the TC, This comes from “Look quickly down” – and THEN you will know the distance – IMO.

          You then say, “Is a trail an object? “In a word, yes.”

          The quote is: “Is the Blaze one single object? ~ Scout Around
          In a word – Yes

          NOT is the TRAIL an object. You are confusing two things – IMO

          You then say, “Can it be removed? “It may … but it is not viable … and ‘still’ is there.” (or in the distant future maybe it will not be there anymore!?!?)

          Can WHAT be removed? the trail that you speak of, or the blaze? The quote about the BLAZE being removed is as follows, “forrest fenn on September 26, 2014 at 4:06 pm said:
          I had an enjoyably visit with Tom and his brother at the Downtown Subscription Coffee Shop in Santa Fe. They seemed like nice guys and avid treasure hunters. But there is confusion somewhere. While it’s not impossible to remove the blaze it isn’t feasible to try, and I am certain it’s still there.

          You then say, “If you find blaze (the trail where researchers passed) you will obviously be 200/500 from the TC. You are again connecting the blaze, and the trail. This is an opinion – NOT a fact. Nowhere has Forrest ever said that the blaze was a trail, or that a trail was the blaze. You need to be a bit more careful my friend – JMO – JDA

          • Jd,

            You then say, “Is a trail an object? “In a word, yes.”

            I got confused at the time of writing. The right is “blaze”.

            As for the rest, look at my last sentence:

            >>> IMO no facts, yet. <<<

          • With your last sentence, you again connect blaze and trail – This is your opinion NOT fact – Good luck though – just do not confuse others by saying that blaze and trail ARE the same. That has not been proven – Just sayin’ – JDA

          • Jda,

            Do you want a binocular?

            Read my post you’re commenting on (that post where I wrote wrong)

            and see “the last thing I wrote.”

            “The last line of the post.”

            I think you’re getting old, my little old man friend.

            : ) ☺☻

          • McB;

            You are asserting that a trail is the blaze. An interesting point of view.

            “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,
            Look quickly down your quest to cease.”

            “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze…”
            Did you find the blaze at its beginning? – At it’s middle? – Or at it’s end? How did you “Find” it?

            “…Look quickly down your quest to cease.” The same questions. At what point along the trail do you look quickly down and find Indulgence? At the beginning, middle end, or some other point along the trail?

            A “Blaze” along a trail, makes sense. The trail itself being the blaze makes no sense to me for the reasons outlined above.

            Good luck – you MAY be onto something, but it does NOT make sense to me – Maybe you can explain – My thoughts, as I see it- JDA

          • Jda,

            I just think so because the mountain man marks a path / trail with blazes.

            We are in the forest of the poem. Nothing more obvious than a blaze indicating a path / trail.

            Look quickly down, in the poem, no in the blaze place.

            Your quest to cease = Quest for terminate the chase.

            In my solution a trail starts exactly in “no paddle”, “HL and WH”.

            And that’s where I’m stoped.

            That is why I am appealing to the stanza 6.

            I hope that stanza 6 helps me to be more precise at this point.

            Where on the trail I go out to find the chest.

            Of course All IMO.

          • McB,

            I’m with you on the trail theory……in my own space, anyhow.

            Did you figure out where and understand the meaning of the omegas I emailed you about?

          • JDA—-

            IMO The blaze is still there minus the fence around it. I accidently fell on the fence and crushed it while trying to dig underneath it. Luckily my fall to the ground was cushioned by falling on a cactus. As far as the Deputy and I know, it does not appear anyone else has found it-yet IMO………… Yes Dal IMO, IMO only

            Best regards;

            1F Billy

          • That’s good to know Billy. I will watch out for that fence – and the cactus next time I am out. I have my tweezers just in case.

            Glad to hear that the blaze is still there – Thanks – JDA

        • McB
          Here’s some Q&A to think about…
          Can the blaze be pre-determined by the poem or can it only be determined at the search area?- 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
          Has anyone seen or mentioned the blaze to you? Thanks Stephanie for the questions. I have read them several times very carefully. They appear subtle on the surface but they aren’t. A yes or no to either question would give too much away, so I’ll pass. Sorry, and I’m aware that some searchers will pick me apart for this answer.f
          Here are my thoughts on this, IMO;
          If the blaze can only be determined at the search area then this would exclude the trail you blazed. So, I am beginning to believe that the blaze is in fact the trail. Why? Because Stanza 4 begins with “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,” a phrase written in the past tense. Now look back at Stanza 3, the last line “Just heavy loads and water high.” That’s the end point of the trail… what’s next? Look quickly down! I think someone asked, how far on the trail? Well, if you found the correct trail I believe “water high,” would be the target end point. [Think elevation. Remember, – no paddle up your creek.]
          Has anyone mentioned the blaze to FF? Again, he doesn’t answer this.. why? IMO because the blaze is the trail. FF would have to have said, yes. If no one has solved up to 4 clues, then it is obvious that no one has located “a” and/or “the” Blaze.. but some people have been within 200 feet. How is that possible?

          • Debi,

            Researchers passed the trail without knowing where they were.

            The trail is below HoB (to the south).

            So FF said that “maybe” someone had identified clue 4.

            But I find it very unlikely that someone has found HoB correct, and miss the following clues: no meek – the end – you creek …

            I consider HoB the divisor of the poem, because before we have a place, HoB gives us a movement and after him another place. In this place we will have to have recognized the blaze.

            From here on we will follow the final instructions of the poem.

          • From my solve which isn’t at all complicated and reads very much like a map from the geographic features present, I think it’s possible that people could misidentify one of the two features that could be considered no place for the meek and walk right past it. I highly doubt a young girl from India would get it because they wouldn’t recognize the reference without having grown up in our culture or our school system, and I suspect most people could look at the paddle and still not get it unless maybe they were from a certain background or upbringing. Most people think paddle as in boat oar, but it’s another type of paddle entirely and someone with the right background will recognize it almost immediately when they see it as I did. Others in my search party completely glossed over it(after I gave them WWWH and hoB) until I gave them a link with the reference and then they stated duh, that’s no coincidence. They were however able to identify no place for the meek correctly but thought it could be the other feature nearby. You’ll know you have the correct no place for the meek when you see the no paddle. Water high is just north of the no paddle and it’s not the end point, nor is the blaze. I also believe there’s another clue between Water High and the blaze that correlates to a geographic feature on a map. If you’ve been wise and read TTOTC you’ll pick up on that too.

    • James: your thoughts are not outta whack. The poem, combined with some very simple imagination, and either a modestly coarse map of the US Rockies or a “comprehensive knowledge of geography” will provide the searcher with the precise location of WWWH, in my humble opinion. It’s all about the poem. You don’t need the books for WWWH. Solving *beyond* WWWH with confidence I think is close to impossible without TTOTC.

      • Hi Zap, I was thinking about what Mr. Fenn said, about how a searcher wouldn’t know they had the right WWWH, until they had the chest. Then I realized he wasn’t saying there’s no way to know where the right WWWH is. So I think the answer is either in the book or the poem, and the book doesn’t seem real forth coming with information that can be decipherd.

        • So, to continue the thought James – The answer must therefore lie within the poem – and I think that it does, in stanza #6 – Just look “In the wood” – JDA

  41. Searchers,


    I need some help with the last stanza (6).

    Does this stanza use any kind of figure of speech?

    Something that only makes sense to Americans?

    No matter how much I research and study, this stanza does not tell me much.

    • Stanza 6 – My thoughts on how this can help you.
      Line #1 refers to Stanza 1
      Line #2 refers to Stanza 2
      Line #3 refers to Stanza 3
      Line #4 refers to Satnza 4

      • Wow, Debi.
        Never looked at it like that but it sure does fit.
        Thanks for the heads up.
        Smoky 🙂

      • Yes, I like this idea.
        Seems like a new idea and those are always welcome.

      • I’ll expand on more thoughts;
        Stanza 2 – Where to Park
        Stanza 3 – Where to Walk
        Stanza 4 – Where to Seek

    • IMO the last stanza tells you that you’re going to have to be brave and go off trail at this point and head out into the wood. It’s colder than surrounding areas and from his other commentary it’s likely in a place you’ll get wet, perhaps a secret fishing hole or other water feature.

    • McB,

      Everything I know is wrong, so I can’t help you with the
      last stanza IMO.

      However, regarding the “blaze”, if “There’s 10 billion blazes
      out there” and if a blaze is “anything that stands out,” my guess
      is it’s a rock or rock formation incongruous in a clearing in a small
      patch of forest (a wood). That would stand the test of time also, and
      it would have no directionality. Just my evolving opinion, at this time.

      Congratulation on your English efforts.


    • McB—-
      The sentence “so hear me all and listen good” is not really considered proper English. “So hear me all and listen well” would be more proper. But “so hear me all and listen good” might be how an American might say something– like John Wayne in a movie playing a cowboy might speak for example.

    • McB-
      You asked about the last stanza, so I will share what I believe about it.

      I think that the last stanza is very closely tied to the first stanza. First of all, its important to remember that FF has told us in the Mobey Dickens Bookstore interview that “I knew where I wanted to hide the treasure chest, so it was easy for me to put one foot down and then step on it to get to the next foot. That’s what I did. I changed it over, I don’t know how many times. I looked up the meaning of words. You know, we really don’t know what some of our words mean.”

      So its important I think, to know that if FF was looking up the meanings of words, then probaby he used at least some meanings of words that we might not be familiar with. I realize the poem is “straight forward” and that its written in “plain English”, but I think that some of the words used were chosen because of a less commonly used definition fit what FF was trying to say. IMO

      So as I explain what I believe the last stanza says, I will compare it to the first stanza. Where a word has or can have more than one meaning, I will place the meaning that I believe applies in ( ).

      First Stanza-
      Etymology dictionaries say that the word “alone” originally meant “all one”

      As= while(during such time) I=water have gone=(passed away) alone=(all one) in there (there in this line is the same as “here”/hear in the last stanza IMO.

      So using correct definitions but not necessarily the most common definition of all the words in line 1, this is what I believe the first line means.
      ‘During such time water/evidence of water passed away all one’ I think this is telling us that over time, water left behind the remnants of the history of the Rocky Mountains in the rock formations that can be seen in areas where the older rock is pushed to the surface, all one/ or as a single rock formation.

      And with=(holding onto) my treasures= (minerals, natural resources) bold=(bowled or caused a bowled formation in rock),

      I can keep my secrets=(something hinted at but not clear) where=(wear, as in wear down or erode) Basically, where water has erroded away rock formations, we can see hints of the history of the Rocky Mountains in the exposed rock.

      And hint of riches new and old =(hints of riches old and new are the historical history found in the rock formations. The Rocky Mtns were preceded by an earlier ancient mountain range and both can be seen in the history the rocks tell)

      Last Stanza-
      So=(sew, as in two or more pieces of rock from earlier time periods pieced together) hear= (here, as in ‘this place’) ‘me all’=(all one) and listen=(pay attention) good=(good=well and well is a place where water is stored or has been stored).

      Your effort= (process) will be worth=(to come to be) the cold (to be left out, as in an ancient rock formation pushed upward and exposed).

      If you=(the searcher) are brave and in the wood (play on words meaning petrified wood)

      I give you title to the gold.

      That is what I believe the last stanza means. I believe it is stating what the first stanza says, only in a different way. I believe that both are talking about a rock formation composed of ancient rock pushed to the surface. When layer upon layer of rock are pushed to the surface, they are kind of sewn or cemented together as one or ‘all one’. I know I’ve given this quote before, but that is because I think it is very important. “Sooner or later each of us will be nothing more than the leftovers of history. . . ” FF

      I think that every single hint that FF has given over the years supports the idea that the poem leads us to the remnants of history/story of the RM told in the rock. I also believe that a natural forest fen is involved.

      FF has said, “I feel my life has been a rough draft of the place just ahead where the past will come alive again and all of my experiences and friends through the years will meet with me at the great banquet table of history. Then there will be no past.”

      I was looking something up to add to this comment. Honestly I can’t remember what I was looking up, because along the way, I found something even more interesting.

      I know the following statement has been analyzed endlessly, but I think the focus on it has been in regard to the statement about the little girl in India, instead of on the part that is the real clue. I also think that in order to understand the significance of FF’s statement, it is essential to read carefully the way the question was asked. FF answered the question but then went on to say something completely unrelated to the question. Why would he do that unless he was dropping a hint?

      Six Questions with Forrest Fenn: Feb 4, 2016
      Q5. your treasure hunt has inspired people worldwide to discover history, culture, and nature, but many people (even in the US) might be deterred becaues they don’t live near the Rockies or can’t afford to travel. Should they be deterred? Can a little girl in India, who speaks good English, but only has your poem and a map of the US Rocky Mountains, work out where the treasure is? And would she be confident as she solves each clue, or only confident when she has solved them all?

      Now notice the answer FF gave.
      “I wish I had another treasure to hide in the Appalacians” (answers the question). “The little girl in India cannot get closer than the first two clues” (answer to question and I believe I know why she can’t get closer) “There are many disabled people who are deeply into maps and geography, and they are having a lot of fun.”

      Wait! What? Nobody asked anything about disabled people. So why bring that up? I believe it is a hint to an exposed rock formation that includes a craton. A craton is the oldest rock that we can find on the surface of the earth without digging. The following website http://all-geo.org/metageologist/2012/12/cratons-old-and-strong/ says this about cratons, “Cratonic crust is strong, being unusually cold and dry”

      The same website listed above also makes an interesting statement about Cratons. “Cratons are pieces of continents that have been stable for a over a billion years. As earth’s plates drift along, mountains periodically rise and fall, plate boundaries appear and disappear. But cratons are like great-grandmothers at family gatherings, while younger crust moves excitedly around them, they sit quietly, occasionally remarking on how different things were when they were young” http://all-geo.org/metageologist/2012/12/cratons-old-and-strong/

      Wow! To me, that statement sounds like what FF has been talking about. He has mentioned several times that at his age it would be harder to get to the place the treasure is hidden (like older harder rock/cratons), and he also has mentioned that a child would be more agile (like younger rock)

      But what does a craton have to do with the statement about disabled people having fun with maps and geography? I will explain why. It is because water goes through permeable rock quite well. But, when it reaches a craton or some other types of ancient rock, it can’t get through. Since no rock of is 100% non-permeable, it can seep a little into a craton, but it can’t flow through it like it can through other types of rock. In a sense, the water becomes lame or crippled or disabled. And that I believe is why “older” rock is like “disabled people”

      FF has also stated that “whatever happens now, it [TC] belongs to the ages. What does that mean? I think it means that the TC is placed in an opening in an exposed rock formation where ancient rock has been pushed upward by a process=(worth) and exposed (cold).

      I believe that unless found, the TC will become part of those “leftovers of history” that have become alone/(all one) in a rock formation.

      FF went to the borders bookstore and said he just wanted to hold a couple of books. Notice that the days he did that, it was raining. The water cycle including rain is what allows the water to creep into the inside of rocks where it eventually evaporates, leaving behind minerals or fossils and other remnants of history. It would be easier on a day that it was raining, for that water to creep into the rocks. Since rocks are the story of history in stone, then FF in the bookstore holding two books would be just like the rocks holding water for a little while (tarry scant)

      Would love to chat more about this with anyone who understands what I’m saying. All of the definitions I have introduced here are real definitions taken from dictionaries. They are just less common definitions and we know that FF himself looked up definitions and said that we just don’t know the meaning of some of our words.

      • Flutterby,
        I may not agree with some of your outcome/ideas… however your first two paragraphs says a lot.
        We have read many of fenn’s ATF’s that seem to give food for thought. Example; the Mobey Dickens book signing; Implies a method of how fenn proceeded to ‘act out’ his task. “I knew where I wanted to hide the treasure chest, so it was easy for me to put one foot down and then step on it to get to the next foot. That’s what I did.”
        Fenn also implied how he wrote the poem or his method to get it just right; “I changed it over, I don’t know how many times. I looked up the meaning of words. You know, we really don’t know what some of our words mean.”

        These two elements, imo, are being ignored by many, not all, but many [ at least those who chat their thoughts on the blogs ]. We have quite a few comments that align with this comment as well… which was one of the very first publicize comment early on in the challenge.
        The point is; If ignored for the simple fact some of the AFT’s don’t align with ones solve they have theorized, it’s a good chance that some could have the correct location only to add the wrong process of solving the clues.

        Seems to me, fenn is almost handing us his thought process of his blueprint unfolded, and his action of how he proceeded in the field [over and over again]. While these comments don’t give answers to the clue’s references… they should be helpful with the idea of what doesn’t seem plausible with these ATF’s, even IF we can force it to work on our maps.

        On a side note;
        Your comment that no one asked about disable people is slightly off. While at that moment it was not asked, others have asked that question in the past.
        I mention this only for thought… fenn may have simply made that statement to the general public because it was raised by other searchers [ e-mails etc. ] So, I think ya may have put too much emphasis on the comment relating to disabilities, and created a possible scenario out of it.
        So my question to you would be… if you knew others [several] having questioned fenn about accessibility to the clues or the the chest by handicap searchers, would you have gone in the direction you did -?- because, as you said; ‘Wait! What? Nobody asked anything about disabled people. So why bring that up?’

        On another thought that kinda lines up with things you have said; Have you considered why fenn may have used the Appalachians rather than a mountain range near Little Indy?

        Food for thought only… What do the two ranges have in common, that align with your overall idea of the clues?

        • Seeker- My solution was put together using the poem and the map. Period. It did not come from any quotes because there is too much information in the quotes to decide what is important. However, now that I have a nearly complete solution. I can easily see that it fits stories in TTOTC and many/if not all other quotes regarding the chase.

          As to why FF brought up the Appalachian Mtns instead of a mtn range closer to India. Because mentioning a specific mtn range near the little girl in India would have named the ONLY other mtn range in the world that shares something in common with a piece of history written in stone from our RM. Also; mentioning the Appalacians answered the question more clearly. The question asked if people in areas of the US should be deterred if they cant travel to the RM.

          Let me just add something I discovered in my early morning reading today. Im rather excited about it because I knew it was significant but didnt know how.
          I believe I have found the geographic formation that fits the story in the Totem Pole chapter about grandma telling Frosty that she had broken the pie on her lunch hour and gave it to FF. Im stunned at what I have discovered.

          But back to the little girl in India. She cant solve the poem because she is in India and not the RM. If she came to the RM she could, but not while she is in India. The first two clues she can solve are the easy ones that a child could know the answer to. She probably is not aware that a mtn range near her own home shares a similarity with part of the RM. They are the only two places in the world that share this characteristic of their history.
          What kind of pie was it? Apple. I think its a different fruit near India.


          • Flutterby;

            I like your interpretation of “Mother Earth” and her development – and of the oldest nonpermeable rocks in her history 4.5+ billion years ago – and what role they might play in a final solution. I get lost in your pie theory though – but it probably is not important (maybe to you it is- who knows where it will lead).

            Thanks for sharing. I think that the goelogic (geographic) history of the place that Indulgence is secreted will play a very important role in discovering just where she is secreted.

            “Heavy loads” could this be related to the above? I think it might. How about “Water high” and whether it will be retained in nonpermeable rocks or not – Forrest did say “It is wet” didn’t he? – JDA

          • Flutterby, you hit on something that I had been wondering about…. Old gray-haired grandmas (comfort places) and ‘breaks’. But you confounded two comments, you said: “I believe I have found the geographic formation that fits the story in the Totem Pole chapter about grandma telling Frosty that she had broken the pie on her lunch hour and gave it to FF. Im stunned at what I have discovered.”

            In the Totem Chapter, Grandma did not ‘break’ the pie, she made the pie on her break. However in another chapter, a Grandma in a bakery on one corner of an intersection of First St. and French, ‘broke’ a pie (broken pies were 2 for a nickel). And author Fenn said he would make a symbolic thank-you to her by pushing a nickel under her gravestone (presumably a cross shaped gravestone) as she smiled down on him.

            In a different chapter, he mentions his sense of accomplishment when sitting on a dead guys marker. Here he also mentions ‘down’ as north .

            All the references (including the Vietnam/Galantry medal) describe a common icon… like the crosshairs over a circle on a gun sight or pilot instrument, a standard map mark, or perhaps the NM Zia symbol.

            Anyhow, the commonalities between these references might be enlightening. There are several other groupings in TTOTC that are interesting if you are willing to study the book as well as the poem. OS2

        • Seeker-
          I failed to respond to two other things you brought up.
          FF said he put one foot down and then stepped on it with the next foot. This leads us to believe he is talking about pacing the distance. I dont think that is what he said or what he hinted at. I think he was hnting that the layers of history in the rock were put down on top of one another.

          “Changed it over” FF
          I think this actually refers to the rock formations being changed again and again over time. Some formations are pushed up and turned over, leaving a “pine apple upside dosn cake” like the one his mother would make when she took the toast brwon from the oven.

          Just to be clear. I dont think its possible to get a correct solve just from the book. I think the correct solve must come from the words of the poem only and that we can only then see the hints the book gives to confirm we are on track. Same thing with the quotes.


          • All I know is the last time I had him over there, y’all said he could cross the street anytime he wanted too.

          • Stepping on one’s own feet is not the smartest way to
            walk or climb anywhere, in my opinion. Please try to relax.

        • Seeker –

          The problem is, as is the case with everything Fenn has ever been asked, no one asked the follow up.

          Can a disabled person that cannot physically retrieve the chest solve all the clues save for the final?

          He is not trying to trick us, he is just answering what is asked. And no one follows up. Fenn has done a fantastic job of picking his interviewers!


      • Flutter–

        I agree with some of your points. After my last bust…I feel like a cretin. It kinda sounds like a craton. At least the Emperor and his quest hasn’t made me a eunuch yet……..not yet

        Best regards;

        Billy and the Boys

    • No figure of speech McB. IMO if you understand stanza 1 then you will understand 5 and 6. They are all related in some way.

      • Aaron,

        The stanza 5 is, of course, a continuation of stanza 1.

        But the 6 is clearly an instruction. And I can not close that account.

        It seems to say a lot, but at the same time it says nothing.

        The hunt ends in stanza 4. Why then stanza 6? What exactly does she want to tell us?

        • “So hear me all and listen good,
          Your efforts will be worth the cold.
          If you are brave and in the wood,
          I give you title to the gold.”


          For me (and others will disagree) these are all hints, and not clues. Hints usually come before a “clue” – A “hint” that will lead you closer to a clue, or a “Hint” that will get your thought processes going BEFORE you start to figure out the clues.

          “So hear me all and listen good,” HINT – Pay attention. I am about to tell you something that is important.

          “Your efforts will be worth the cold.” The place that you will be looking in will be colder than the surrounding area. This MAY just mean – Look in the mountains, NOT in the lower elevations (Uses when you FIRST start the solve. Or later, look in an area that may be on the shady side of a hill, or in a depression of some kind – thoughts along these lines.

          “If you are brave and in the wood,” – Again a hint – NOT as clue. “In the wood” could indicate a forest, not a more “desert-like” area. “Brave” could somehow refer to Native Americans – maybe the name of a National Forest relating to Native Americans – Cherokee- Medicine Bowl – etc. Many National Forest’s have names related to Native Americans – in all four states.

          “Wood” is singular not plural. It could have something to do with a single tree of some kind – There could be an obscure meaning of wood vs woods – Who knows.

          “I give you title to the gold.” – IF you figure out all of the hints AND ALL of the CLUES – AND find Indulgence, I will give you title to the gold – but only IF you figure it all out! – JMO, others will disagree – JDA

        • McB, here is a continuation of my opinion on stanza 6. Own it’s on it says nothing. There are no clues in it. It does help with a confirmation of a thought or idea that is in both stanza 1 and stanza 5 which helps with the clues.

        • McB –

          This is about how a poem is written, how a story is told.

          Stanza 1 introduces the reader (or viewer) to the task
          Stanza 2 – 4 make up the story (the task)
          Stanza 5 Summarizes what we have done so that the reader can judge whether we (we being Artist and Viewer) have done it.
          Stanza 6 is the artist’s signature. Not everyone signs their work.


          • Lugz,
            If every word is deliberate and not discounting them… what’s the point of an intro in a ‘poem’?
            Why bother with telling us twice; he went and now must go? { the two statements/lines would be ok IF he did his original plan _ but he ruined that }
            And why the heck is stanza 6 considered a signature, when its within a book of memoirs of the person who wrote the poem.

            I mean, I’m as close to a poem purist without having the little white square on my collar on my all black suit, clutching my holy TTOTC Bible, but we have fenn pretty much saying… Nope…
            ~If in 500 years all a person has is the poem, and no back story: they don’t know “in the rocky mountains north of santa fe” or that there are 9 clues etc. Could a person reasonably just use the words in the poem and find your treasure chest? Nope, Nope.

            Unless fenn is having fun by implying the words need leg work as well… we need to know something not in the poem.
            My guess is why there are 9 clues that fenn counted when done with the poem… to be precise.
            Does it matter when he counted them?… we apparently need 9 exact / complete [completed?] deciphered clues to get to a 10″ piece of property some where within four states.
            Are the clues so abstract and have a great deal of imagination about them.. the book is much more than just helpful?

            Can “brave and in the wood” [ no S ] imply poetically Brave; as to take on a challenge, and In the Wood; as the book itself. Tell the reader, here is what you need to imagine about the poem? The title “to” [ as in take someone “to” the gold ] the gold being the book?

            I would consider that a bit more than a signature, if true… already in a book by the author. [ seriously… the book and the contents, stories and poem, were meant to stay as one. That is why the book has the poem within it, right? ]

            Fact as fenn sees it; all the information to ‘find’ the treasure is in the poem… the clues. While that statement must be true, where do we get information from, to help decipher those clues?
            Get back in the box… Cuz it ain’t in no history book at the local library.

        • In order for the hunt to end in stanza 4, you need the info found in 5 and 6.

          And you must have the omega’s figured out before botg.

          • Well, it certainly didn’t occur to me, that that creep, had been spying on my medications and stalking me for the length of time that he had. Or that he and other thought I had committed crimes I hadn’t.

          • Forrest has said that the secret will go to the grave with the person that put them at the end of his books. I know I have found two sets of double Omegas. I know that when I found them, to me, it confirmed that I was in the correct area. More than that I think is conjecture. You obviously have a different view, and think that “they” play a vital role in your solve. Good luck with that idea. I do not “use” them as a”tool” or some-such in my solve – It would appear that you do. Again, good luck – JDA

          • JDA

            I’d be happy to share with you my opinions on what they represent and how they work within the poem…..I think you might find it beneficial. And if you decide it doesn’t work in your solve, then no hard feelings and business as usual. I would just prefer not to announce it at this point. You can shoot me an email here (all one word, all lowercase)
            one full of faith @yahoo.com

    • IMO, “so hear me all and listen good”…speak the poem…listen to the sounds…

  42. Flutterby, I understand what you are saying. Was just gathering petrified wood yesterday in Tom Miner.

    Missed the discussion on bears—we saw 2 Griz & a black in GTNP, and 3 griz and 3 blacks in Yellowstone over the past week. But last night, plugging in our car at Mammoth, behind a bank of cars and next to a little grass verge, suddenly a ranger screamed at us to ‘get back! Get back!’ There was a placid looking elk with her little one there staring at us, maybe 20 feet away, we couldn’t see at first. It turns out the elk had just kicked an employee in the head and face, and the employee was being airlifted to a trauma center. made the national news. This morning (Mon) after watching Steamboat geyser erupt (yay!!!!), we got stuck in a bison traffic jam, and held our breath while a huffing bison with a baby started pawing the ground a couple of feet from our car. Started moving just in time… no true safety in the wilderness, even in a car, but yeah bear spray works with mountain lions, too! Stay safe out there. It’s worth the cold…

    • Oh wow, Lady V, that is amazing and unnerving! Where did you see the griz in both GTNP and Yellowstone? Were you on popular trails or in more remote locations? Was seeing Steamboat erupt simply pure luck? (I know that’s a stupid question, but I thought I would make sure.)

      • Hi JBL,

        This year, we saw the bears only from (a) the car (a sow with her cub who appeared to also have adopted a black bear cub crossed the road in front of us) and (b) on an established trail, and pretty far away. In prior years, we saw a grizzly from about 50-75 yards away (we on trail, he not, flat area just S of YNP and W of Jackson Lake). We were upwind of him, he sniffed and watched us intently as we walked on as calmly as possible. The year before, in a pine forest in GTNP (String Lake Trail), a grizzly and cub were coming up a slope on our right, about 10 yards away. I would’ve ran right into them if my husband hadn’t whispered just loud enough. The sow was HUGE, with rippling fur. We were downwind, and turned around immediately. Those experiences spooked me. I just don’t believe Forrest would place the TC somewhere where someone had a good chance of running into a grizzly, particularly if they were with kids.

        Some trails are notorious for grizzlies, some of them change every year, and the rangers will tell you about those.

        Watch out for the elk and moose, too!

        Steamboat was not luck! We met a guy staffing the bookshop at Norris who told us it’s been erupting every 6-8 days (8 times), and how to tell when an eruption was relatively close (starts minor eruptions of 20′, then 40′, which occur closer and closer together, then the water begins to shoot directly upwards, instead of at an angle). There were about 40 geyser watchers all decked out there with chairs, etc. all weekend. We showed up on Sat and Sun for awhile, and then just before 9:00 on Mon. (day 8). Bingo! It was truly awesome.

    • WOW what a day! Thrilling isn’t it. Please – all – heed the warnings of the rangers! ALL mother animals will protect their young – at any cost! JDA

      • For sure. The day after the story about the elk, above, a guest was also attacked–kicked in the head again, sent to the hospital again–this time, while the guest turned a corner to her cabin and happened upon a mama and baby elk.

    • I’m a big fan of the ‘take only memories and pictures’ ethic when our species is in the wilderness. When some decide they’re entitled to things such that others who follow their foot path are robbed of the joy of experiencing those, then I’m OK with some other species defending nature and teaching a good permanent life lesson.

    • What does he plan to do once I’m moved?

      How long is this harassment allowed to go on?

      • Blu
        I am lost.
        Who are you talking to?
        What are you referring too?
        Clearly Clueless

    • I hate seeing stories about park employees ( who should know better ! )
      getting injured by animals. Thank you for reminding us that animals are wild
      and potentially dangerous. I wish we COULD fix stupid. All IMO.

      • Seriously. But I have to say, it can be very hard to see them. Those two elk were hunkered down right behind a bank of cars in a weird place. Maybe the lesson is to be careful, even when in “civilization.”

        • That being said, last year a family brought a meat-heavy picnic up to Beaver Ponds… bears like it there… and a grizzly stole their backpack and food but left them alone. They were really lucky. They went to the ranger station and asked if someone would retrieve their backpack. Ye gods.

  43. This scenario has probably been considered before:

    Someone thinks they have solved FF’s riddle but can’t go look so finds a search partner. The searcher sets off but either says they didn’t find it or stops communicating with the solver. The solver is left wondering were they wrong or have they been gypped. For me it’s just a worry if the treasure was hidden at EC. Makes for an interesting thought perhaps?


  44. JDA-

    FF did say it is “wet”. However, wet has more than one meaning. I believe I know the meaning he intended in that statement.

    I didn’t understand the pie until today actually. I knew it was significant because of the stories in TTOTC. But, until I was reading up some more on the geography of the RM, I didn’t realize what it meant. I believe I understand it now.

    Honestly, at this point, I wish I had a group of people I could trust enough with the more specific details. It would be nice to be able to share more and get some feedback. But, who do you trust when everyone is out to get a TC? Personally, I don’t care much about the chest. I care about solving the poem. But, the only way to know you have solved the poem is to find the TC.

    • Flutterby,
      You have made some very interesting comments. Whether they are right or wrong I have no idea. You have got us to thinking and that is what counts. Thank you for your contributions.

      • Thank you for taking notice of my fluttering TimW.

        I meant to add something to my posting about diagraming the sentences. It was mentioned in one of the diagraming videos that if diagramed correctly (I’m not saying it was or wasn’t), the word “it” in the “Begin it where warm waters halt” and “take it in the canyon down” should be referring to the same “it”. I think that is true.

        Now look at the 5th stanza. There is “it” again twice. I’d say “it” is important. “I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak” is interesting. As many of you know, I believe that “I” is water. So if you look at the poem from the perspective of water (whether or not you agree with me), it appears that this sentence is saying “I” (water) have done “it”. I think that relationship between “I” and “it” given here in the poem.

        If you follow that train of thought, then ‘water did it’. What did water do? In my opinion, it left behind a story in stone of the rocky mountains.

        Now examine the story, Jump Start the Learning Curve. p 25 says, “Fortunately, I was the only one in the class who knew that trick, the sliding I mean, and even though that rusty old iron thing marked the tail of my britches pretty good with a heavy brown color, it was worth it”.

        There is that odd type of phrase again. What is it called when FF refers to something he stated earlier as if by an afterthought. “the sliding I mean”.

        And it is with this statement that FF says people were beginning to notice “him”.

        If “I” is water and it has done “it”, what has it done? I believe I know the answer.

        • Flutterby would you consider registering at Thor or CC so that people could PM you?

          • Buddy Allen,
            I have no idea how to register on one of those sites you asked about. But, I have a separate Email that I use for TTOTC. You can message me if you like.
            butterflygarden00 at yahoo.com

  45. Seeker said: “The Solve drivers here have never been able to answer why fenn would have to follow the clues from the first, if driving was involved, other than to say… * he never said ALL the clues. *”

    Seeker, if getting to the remainder of the clues requires driving past the first 2 then would he not have followed the clues?

  46. It seems like to me driving or walking the first two clues is still on the table based on what we know. If a searcher drove the first two clues and parked in the right spot and started walking they could get within a few hundred feet, leave the poem, and walk past the rest. Obviously the statements all work for a “walking all of the clues” searcher too. I don’t get why this is so hard to understand..

    • It is not understandable because of the biased opinions as to how the clues are interpreted by either side. If the clues are *deciphered correctly* none of this even matters.
      As a side note….I would think that everyone would agree that a searcher, any searcher, has to DRIVE to wwwh to start the search, right? In doing so…is it not possible that said searcher might drive by clues 2 thru 9 before even getting to clue number 1 ? There are any number of scenarios that can be possible without bias to what one THINKS the clues mean, given the facts.

      • Ken,

        I’m probably splitting hairs when I say this, but I think you drive a vehicle to where you have to start. It may be wwwh, or it may be the trail-head that takes you to wwwh – that part I am unsure of.

  47. OS2,
    I’m sorry that I accidently merged the two grandma stories. Thanks for sorting that out. Both times, FF got pie that had been made by grandma. So I do think that grandma is important.

    I think that the “pie” has something to do with the earth’s crust being broken in area of the TC.

    • FB,
      I think the words PIE & BREAK & GRANDMA do work together as a hint. I hadn’t considered PIE as earths’ crust, but broken pie sure sounds like an earthquake reference.

      And the “Old Gray Lady” sounds to me like an affectionate term for something familiar & revered, perhaps a mountain or river. For boy-Fenn, She was a place of comfort, warmth, protection, and nourishment. The nickel may just represent a circle, but an Indian head or Buffalo might be an auxiliary hint in the set…. an Indianhead bust was in the TWR chapter. PIE also means Proto-Indo-European for linguistic word basics or morphemes. And pie might be a derivative for a compound word like pineapple or yellowstone. Are we having fun yet? OS2.

  48. Flutterby on June 1, 2018 at 2:17 pm said:

    swwot- For starters, I’m glad someone seems to be considering this train of thought.

    I believe that the poem tells us a general location but then details a rock formation that we must find. I’m not sure what you mean by “reconstruct using materials in the area”.

    Flutterby, I’ve moved this discussion over here to Odds and ends – hope you’re ok with that.

    My thoughts are along these lines, using all the natural resources available to your observation, what can you “build” in your mind’s eye to reconstruct what the original architect had in mind? I’m talking figuratively, not literally. When I am in the correct locale, what do I observe around me that fits what the architect has drawn up so as to lead me to Indulgence? It is my suspicion and opinion that when you get in the correct area, you’ll have to do some sleuthing and clue cracking on site. As I have stated before, I do not believe that all the clues are currently on a map, but, once discovered/solved, could be put on one. It is also my opinion that no map currently printed has all of the features needed to walk up to Indulgence. Mr. Fenn made sure of that in how he designed the search.

    Your mileage may vary,

    • swwot – I believe they are all geographic features and can all be found on the map, but so far I have not seen them all on one map. I have found them on 3 separate maps of the same area.

        • All features can be seen from GE they just might not have a label. Google Maps won’t show hoB unless I specifically search it, but it shows up on the topozone forest service map.

      • Eric D,

        I respectfully disagree. I strongly suspect that Mr. Fenn has “something up his sleeve” (Sorry McB, you may not get that idiom) concerning the solving of all 9 clues in the search area. So far, folks that tie all nine clues to spots on maps have come up empty handed. That leads me to my opinion, that that kind of thinking is incorrect. Hence, there has to be discovered clues in the search area that are not necessarily map points already notated on any map.

        However, once Indulgence is secured, the finder can then put those identifying features on a map so that others could follow the same path. It is my opinion, no map holds all the points needed for finding Indulgence. Yes, this is a radical idea because it forces us to use our imagination once we put boots on the ground – to think outside the box (or the lines on a map).

        I sure wish I had more to go on than my “gut feeling” on this.

        • Yep, I agree with “there has to be discovered clues in the search area that are not necessarily map points already noted on any map.” That’s too easy and not very fun. I also think it’s why the little girl from India cannot get any closer than the first two clues. You can find WWH and a canyon on a map from there you need to do a little investigating. I really don’t think HOB is a place on a map with the word Brown in it and that’s my 3rd clue. Brown Canyon – nope. Brown Creek – nope. I’m going on a hunch that you have to figure out HOB and the blaze and a few other clues that more importantly tie into the THEME. The only reason why I feel this way, IMO is because they happen to fit my solve in a very creative, fun way once you figure it out – LOL! Team Wyoming!

        • I have never seen my WWWH posted online. hoB most certainly is on a map and all of the clues fall right in to place in my solve area without all of the mental gymnastics I’ve seen. Several hints from the book and Q&As with Forrest also align with the solve area but I’ll explain that after my trip in August and yes it’s in Wyoming and not in Yellowstone.

    • sswot,
      You said, ” It is also my opinion that no map currently printed has all of the features needed to walk up to Indulgence. Mr. Fenn made sure of that in how he designed the search.”

      I agree!

  49. Hi JBL, you will enjoy Stone I’m sure. There are two here in the San Diego area, both really nice!

    • Hi Aaron, I didn’t realize you are in San Diego area as well. I’m looking forward to it. My son is in OC and we will head south to visit family and friends over the weekend. They have all been to SBC (don’t know which location) and really like it. I’m doing well health wise, so I’m excited. Cheers to you as well!

      • Glad to hear your are doing well. San Diego is lots of fun with lots of great breweries as Zap mentioned. I love it here 🙂 Enjoy your trip!

    • JBL: I actually live in OC, not San Diego. But I’ve been to many of the breweries in San Diego County (both Stones, Ballast Point, Bagby, Green Flash, Societe, and a half dozen others). My more local stomping ground is Beachwood Brewing.

      • Well, we may have to stop in there on one of the days we are in OC. So, cheers! I think I’m getting a buzz from all of the toasts!

      • JBL: if you end up giving Beachwood a try, let me know! It would be interesting to meet another Fenner in person. There are three Beachwood locations — the original in Seal Beach, another in Long Beach, and the brewery itself in Huntington Beach. If you or your husband likes pulled-pork barbecue, brisket or ribs, Seal Beach is where you want to go. They have 4 wines, 2 or 3 ciders, and over two dozen rotating taps of beers from all over (usually including 3 or 4 of their own). Just note that they are closed on Mondays.

          • Ask Dal to give you my email and send me an email, so I will be able to contact you easier.

          • I wasn’t thinking…I need to be the one to ask Dal to give you my email address. And I just did that.

  50. Ok, does anybody else here NOT use Google Earth for their solve.
    I just wandered over there to take a look at my favorite area.
    It started spinning and I got lost…..LOL

    Clearly Clueless

    • I have used GE to double check my solve and look for additional clues, but I primarily use Topozone, Google Maps, and other miscellaneous sources.

    • https://mapper.acme.com, and maps you can get from the USGS website. acme mapper is good because the topo maps have old entries still on them or something like that. plus you can switch from topo to satellite images just by clicking a button so it’s kinda cool. my wife used it for work and suggested i use it too. I like GEs time travel thing where you can look at past images they’ve taken.

  51. I have a group therapy question for everyone that does not involve any of you having to divulge your solutions to the point that it causes restless sleep, nail biting, or anxiety.
    My question to all of you is, what do you consider close proximity? If I had no idea of the treasure and was asked this, I think my answer for “close proximity” would be anything less than a 1/4 mile. Like I mentioned above, what does it mean to you? I believe this answer will vary, but I think our estimates might be within close proximity.

    • med_evac
      “what do you consider close proximity?”

      FF has said that the clues are contiguous.

      Contiguous=”touching, meeting or joining at a surface or border,” 1610s, from Latin contiguus “near, touching, bordering upon,” from root of contingere “to touch upon” https://www.etymonline.com/word/contiguous

      I believe that “touching, meeting or joining” would be close proximity.

      • @Flutterby, You are right. The clues are contiguous. FF said that but FF stated separately that there are no man-made trails within close proximity to the treasure.
        On another note, I think that the “man-made” trails question was poorly thought out when presented to Mr. Fenn. Most trails, not all, but most trails in the search area are former pack trails which began as game trails. They may be improved by man in some instances but they are game trails nonetheless. A lot of the highways are former game trails.

        • med_evac,
          I think that the trail is made by nature herself. That doesn’t mean it hasn’t become a trail used by animals or people. But, I am pretty certain that Mother Nature made it. IMO

      • Flutter –

        He has said the clues are contiguous, he hasn’t said the locations they reference are.

        Has he?


        • How do you interpret this one Lug?

          ““Only the nine clues, in consecutive order, in the Poem, when understood and followed, leads a person precisely to the chest. ” Here he couples the clues – in consecutive order (Your contiguous) – “…and followed (physical action required) Leads (physical action) a person (The one doing the physical action) precisely to the chest (A physical location – not an imaginary one) – How do you read it? – JDA

          • In my opinion, willing or not, the researcher will have to go through the clues.

            It is the only right way, without deviations or distractions.

            The solution at home is one thing, BOTG is another.

            In BOTG everything is similar and gigantic.

            Very, very attention at this time is necessary. For to not leave any clue behind.

        • Lugz,
          He used the word contiguous long after saying the clues were consecutive. While similar yet slightly different they both mean uninterrupted.
          Just because he ‘hasn’t stated’ the ‘locations’ specifically, are we to just wait for him to come out and say it years later? As he has with other comments we have debated on.
          So, logically if the clues are both Touching and In Order, would they not have to be uninterrupted by both meanings of each word?

          The ATF’s state the clues can be married to a map, which means they are [ for the most part ] locations and if those locations are not interrupted in anyway… contiguous added a great deal to consecutive… because consecutive can be in an orderly fashion [ example 2 4 6 8 10 ] where Contiguous would be [ 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 as an example ].

          The only real question is… how did fenn mean to use the words at the time he used them… We know he meant the clues are consecutive in order in the poem… he has stated as such and should be followed the same way… If they should be followed that way [physically or mapping] then “contiguous” bring the clues together and uninterrupted. Distances doesn’t matter really, as long as the connection / linking is there, line of thinking.

          Using this thought of how the word usages work with each meaning… it would seem the clues should be touching, neighboring, and in consecutive order to be followed. Whether on a map or on site. Because contiguous means; Bound, Complete, Nearest, bordering, adjoining. etc etc. Consecutive mean order of following.

          IMO… He did say the location are… we might not be listening, is the problem.

        • Folks have a difficult time listening to the words as they are presented in respect to the questions and happenings amongst the blogs. It seems that some want there to be some mysterious or esoteric answer to the problem…a sort of grasping at straws after multiple fails…even though Fenn has repeatedly said it is straight forward and no subterfuge.
          Riddles are difficult when presented in this fashion and even more so because it took him years to say the poem/clues is a RIDDLE. Most of the PLACES the clues refer to…comes to mind when I hear folks making comments like this.

          • I still think the clues describe a small place (type 1 acre) and that it is possible to see all the clues from the top of the chest.

            Otherwise there will be no accuracy of the chest hiding.

            IMO – I just got here.

          • That could be a very distinct possibility McB. I however, do not believe this to be the case. Sometimes I believe that folks have grasped onto that idea because it certainly would make things much easier. The person that finds the treasure chest will be the only one besides Fenn to know that for sure….

          • There is a phrase from FF that makes me think so.

            He said that when he reaches the end of a sentence he has already forgotten the beginning of it.

            I imagine the resolution of the poem in the same way.

            Some start well, but in the end they forget why they were there.

            They make the resolution too long and get lost along the way, passing straight through the chest.

            Many think and 1 WWWH with 2 CD with 3 TFTW with 4 HoB and so on … they have to make many choices, which become impossible to follow all.

            I imagine there are 9 WWWH (hypothetical) 8 CD, 7 TFTW, 6 HoB … that result in 1 blaze … this greatly reduces the possibilities and makes the resolution more accurate.

            My solution was like that, by elimination, and I got to 1 blaze only in my area.

            However, I do not believe that the hunt ends. In this place I have to “sift” the common stones, separating the gold from the rocks. But how? BOTG only?

            Maybe the rest of the poem tells us “what” to do.

            Just my opinion. No the gold yet. : (

    • med_evac
      “Each “close proximity” is different, relative, and site-specific,…”
      If your primary interest is in the comment: “There isn’t a human trail in very close proximaty to where I hid the treasure.f”
      I would agree with you, 1/4 mile or less.

  52. JDA,
    I agree with you that the poem tells us where to find the correct WWWH and the blaze. IMO there is something unique about this specific WWWH that separates it from the “many places WWWH. . .most of them north of Sante Fe”. I think it makes no sense to check out hundreds or thousands of guesses. I believe that the clues in the poem confirm each other.

    Also; there is one simple word in the poem that I have never ever heard mentioned as being important. If only people would look up in many dictionaries including the etymology dictionaries, they would probably be as surprised as I was that this seemingly insignificant word ties the poem together. Without the definition of this word, there is no certain solution to the poem IMO.

    I have been focusing on geography. The more I study it, the more clear this poem becomes.


    • Flutterby,
      Please excuse the intrusion, but I had the same realization about 2 months ago. One night , I sat up in bed, and thought to myself… Duh!
      How could I have not made the connection for 4 years! It was so simple and I never realized the importance of the word. Everything clicked into place ( at least in my possible solution) and I am headed out very soon to test this theory.

    • Sounds like you could be on the right track – JMO – Good luck to Ya’ JDA

    • What’s so fun about this is how many solutions can be presented with confidence and be vastly different. We have Geology, Etymology, the Gulf of Mexico, an obscure meaning of in the wood, the Grand Canyon, clouds, fishing regulations, my silly version, and so many more.

      Keep it up everyone. The right solution is out there!

    • Flutter

      I cannot wait to hear the big mystery word that no one but you truly understands.

      You sound like JD when he explains what the hints mean.

        • sean,
          Its actually a little mystery word. Mystery word = but
          Do you know all the definitions of this word?
          Good luck with that. If you studied your geography you would understand.


      • Lugnutz,
        “big mystery word” = but
        Do you know all the definitions of this word? I’d guess the answer is no. If you did, you probably could see how it tells us a lot about the poem and how the lines tie together.


        • Fluttterby –

          Everyone here a the HOD and on THOR and Chat and Jenny’s and even lurkers have, by now, looked up every word in the dictionary hundreds of times. Your statement is kind of insulting. Others do it too.

          AND just because you didn’t know the meaning of a word before you looked it up doesn’t mean that I don’t know it.

          But, here is the thing. If you want to say how you think that the word BUT opens up the whole cookie jar I’m listening. You just have to understand that I may see this differently.


          • Forgive me for being a noob but can you share what HOD, THOR and the rest are?

            Only Thor I know is a Norse God. TYIA

          • HOD = Home of Dal – This site.

            Don’t know THOR – Think it refers to another Fenn-related website – Maybe someone else can answer – JDA

          • @phelix,

            Look at the bottom of this page, Odds & Ends, and you will find THOR – – ◾The Hint of Riches – Thor Forum

          • Seriously Lugnutz?
            You said rather rudely, “I cannot wait to hear the big mystery word that no one but you truly understands.
            You sound like JD when he explains what the hints mean.”

            I simply answered your question, and I stand by my answer. It was not intended to be rude. It was intended to say that there is something about the word “but” that ties the poem together. I believe that if you don’t know how this word ties the poem together, then perhaps you have overlooked something. Sounds like you think it is an insignificant word.

            I will tell you that I don’t think it is being used as a conjunction in the poem. I think it is a subject/noun.

            Just the other day, I had some guy (forget who) on this site telling me that it was a waste of time to look up words. Surely, according to him, FF would not have tried to “trick” us by using uncommon definitions. So really, how am I suppose to know whether you agree with that guy or you are one of the intelligent folks that are looking up definitions.

            You said, “If you want to say how you think that the word BUT opens up the whole cookie jar I’m listening. You just have to understand that I may see this differently.” I’d explain it to you, but I can see you only want to argue. So I will leave you to argue with yourself. No insult was intended. Take a breath! Go outside and enjoy some nature.

          • Flutter –

            I am not really following what you are trying to say to me.

            Are you saying you doubt that we have ever looked up words? That’s flat out nuts. Everyone here spends tons of time looking up words and then we all discuss them. If you don’t want to discuss what BUT means, that’s fine. Maybe I will here about it after you go searching.

            me, I just don’t understand the purpose of making a decalaration about how the word opens up the poem and ties everything together if you are not wanting to discuss it. Is it just so that once you find the treasure you can say “See, I was right!”?

            Meanwhile your are arguing with the wrong dude. Many chasers are set on their own ideas. Not me man. I enjoy hearing new ideas. I would love to hear what you think. I cautioned you in terms of what to expect in response because if your just going to talk about how BUT is a reference to being outside or the place where the banco is or any of that, it’s been discussed.

            Maybe you have something new and that would be awesome!


    • One has to wonder what your word is. If I knew, it might take a load off of my mind – Hummmmmm? JDA

  53. Hi all, this may have been discussed before, so I apologize if I am repeating.

    I was just looking up the definition of secret. Some interesting synonyms are – key, recipe, blueprint, answer and solution. Any thoughts?

  54. JFYI, I was unsuccessful on 6-2-18. Back to the drawing board. I’m going to start looking at this as in the backwards bike scenario. And another FYI, these newbies have nothing on us. This has never been a vacation for me, this has been my job for over 2 yrs. And now I will go comment on the latest SB. Mr. fenn probably won’t like it.

    • Afana –

      Fenn thinks you’re the Bee’s Knees!

      I am sure he would love to hear your thoughts as would I.


  55. Seeker,
    “what’s the point of an intro in a ‘poem’?” I agree 100%. The first stanza is not just telling us that FF went out and hid the treasure. IMO it is telling us what “I”=water did.

    And anyone who thinks that stanza 6 is just a signature is never going to reach the end of this quest IMO.

    “he went and now must go” Well, technically, “I”=water went and “now must go” tells us it is continuing to go=”ever drawing nigh”.

    “Could a person reasonably just use the words in the poem and find your treasure chest?” YES At one time, I thought the answer was a no, but now I realize that every single thing in the poem is connected and “contiguous”

    Contiguous=”touching, meeting or joining at a surface or border,” 1610s, from Latin contiguus “near, touching, bordering upon,” from root of contingere “to touch upon” https://www.etymonline.com/word/contiguous

    Wait! What did that definition just say? “to touch upon”? That sure fits the idea of rock layers sandwiched together in the history of the RMs. Not only that, but it seems to point to the chapter in TTOTC about Teachers with Ropes and why people should be able to “touch” treasures.

    “we need to know something not in the poem” FF has clearly stated that there is no special knowledge that is necessary but that an understanding of geography might help. I doubted this, but took his word for it, and sure enough, the more geography I learn, the more I understand the contigous layers of the rock formations of the RMs. Honestly, most of what I have read about geography is stuff I already know, but studying it brings it to mind and helps me see what the poem is saying.

    Why 9 clues? I think that is fairly obvious as you start to make sense out of the poem.

    You said, ” the book and the contents, stories and poem, were meant to stay as one” The word “alone” as in “I have gone alone in there” comes from the phrase “all one”. FF was quoted once as saying something about meeting at the “banquet table of history”. I believe that these rock layers over time become sandwiched together and become the “banquet table of history” Only, it is not a table. Its a pie! And at first I could only see the apple pie. What the heck was this about apple and cherry pies? Then I read some more geography and sure enough. There were cherry pies too!

    “Cuz it ain’t in no history book at the local library” Oh, but it is IMO! Its in geography you can read about in the library or the internet. Basic geography that maybe we haven’t been focused on IMO.


    Happy Searching!

  56. Blubelle117
    “All I know is the last time I had him over there, y’all said he could cross the street anytime he wanted to”

    He goes to school doesn’t he? Those biddies should mind their own business!

  57. So I was out on one of my adventures today. Tramping through the forest to try to catch some photos of a den of foxes near our cabin. Driving home afterward, I began to mull over rocks, and water, and geography and such.

    Why did this quote pop into my head when I haven’t heard it in over a year? This quote made no sense to me at the time. Why would anyone whisper on the blogs? And these people on the blogs, what do they know anyway? No offense to any of you.

    FF said, “It seems logical to me that a deep thinking treasure searcher could use logic to determine an important clue to the location of the treasure. Is someone doing that now and I don’t know it? It’s not what they say on the blogs that may be significant, it’s what they whisper. f” (From Scrapbook Sixty One. . .)

    Well, FF, I believe I’m doing that now.

    This makes sense to me now. Look up the definition of blog. I like this one ” A frequent, chronological publication of personal thoughts (https://www.marketingterms.com/dictionary/blog/)

    Couldn’t this definition apply to the story of the Rocky Mountains contained in the rock history where water has left a trail behind? I’m going to say Yes! You could say that the history of the Rocky Mountains is the history recorded in stone and it is a is a “whisper”.

    Interestingly, it is also a “reflection”, a “shadow”, “image” or ” apparition”.
    Hmm. I’m liking these connections!

    Here is something NEW to think about! “a deep thinking treasure searcher could use logic to determine an important clue to the location of the treasure” (FF)

    Interesting idea that perhaps the clues do not actually tell us where the physical location is. Perhaps it is not a walk along a trail, drive in the car or paddle in a creek that we should be contemplating until we understand the poem. Perhaps we must know the “answers I already know” before we set out to look for the elusive TC. Maybe the answers will help us to use logic to find the TC. Perhaps we need to do some “deeper” thinking and apply those thoughts to find the location by ourselves. I had come to that conclusion a few days ago. But, this quote seems to solidify that thought for me.

  58. “Solved” is the new “hint vs. clue”, apparently.

    If (paraphrasing) you can’t know your wwwh is correct until you find the TC, I suggest “educated guess” as a compromise.

  59. I think some of the ideas in these blogs are getting over complicated and esoteric, esp since f said to simplify. I don’t know much about logic and I live my life in a decidedly non logical and intuitive fashion. However, there are a few popular ideas that might help. “Logic” and deep thinker might refer to William of Ockham, who lived shortly after the treasure chest was crafted. He is famous for the logical tool called Ockham’ s razor which basically states that the simplest answer is probably correct.

    On the other hand, it’s fun to speculate about this stuff, so I’ll throw out another idea. Who’s a deep thinking logical person who might have -I don’t know- gone boldly searching somewhere?

  60. When Mr. Fenn said that the chest is not in a dangerous place, I assumed that there would be no bears , wolves, or mountain lions near the hiding place. He wanted families with little kids out searching. I’m thinking it has to be a family friendly place.

  61. In your face ATF’s;

    Some like to believe fenn is handing out clues and hints like candy on Halloween. While I won’t call them hints or clues, I can see information for thought present. Almost, in your face type suggestions… One of which is;
    ~ “Although I’m not ready to say the chest is not in water…” { when explaining how he sealed the olive jar } Only later to come out with; “The chest is not underwater.”

    There have been many questions presented to fenn over the years, some of which he declined to answer for many year… yet have now surfaced. One example is, When did he hide the chest? In the book we have fenn saying “At age almost eighty…” another comment… “don’t go where an eighty year old man can’t…” And while answering the classroom questions from the kids he finally narrowed that down to “summer” { which some seem to logically assume the summer of 2010 prior to his 80th birthday of that year }

    Just a few examples of ATF’s over the years that seem to give information that might help with certain aspects of the challenge… mainly safety suggestions of when to search { when the mud dry, line of thinking } And other that seem to be a direct ‘in your face statement’ { such as ‘not ready to say the chest is not in water’ } Which caught my attention as soon has this Q&A was released. It was the way he stated it… He “not ready to say” LOL Well didn’t he just do exactly that?!

    None of these comments seem to help with hint or answer a clue, but they should make us think about our own theories and plausible idea to help keep us from going on a wild goose chase… although some will be in denial no matter what fenn says. We have seem it with the ‘not under water ‘ comment and even ‘WWWH is not a dam dam’ comment. Some searcher can not give up their theories even when fenn smacks them in the face with these suggestions.

    I bring this up for a reason… Like many ATF’s fenn has seemingly “eliminated” Possibilities and Locations { such as, we now know the chest is only within four states } As of this date we have a lot of info to brew over that earlier searchers didn’t. I think it would be a good exercise to align old ATF’s with what is known now.
    Why? Well, as I said in the beginning; some think fenn is handing out hints and clues like candy… WhatIF it’s more than that? Not hint or clues to solve the “9” but suggestions how how the blueprint of the poem is laid out. Which might raise questions to think about; such as; Is there are reason fenn has not eliminated any of the four remaining states? Do the clues in the poem relate to those states? Is Summer [ the months of ] something we should be thinking about and does it have to do with any part of the poem’s clues?

    A lot of this has been chatted about over the years… I’m only suggesting a recap of the conversations and questions because of the fact we now have answers we did not have before… answers that seem to connect to many prior ATF’s and Q&As. I’m not asking for blogger to talk about their solves… that happens on a daily basis, I’m looking for those who want to chat about the ATF’s and not their solves, and look at them as a possible idea that fenn might have been telling us… how to see the poem the way he sees it.

    • I’m only picking out a small piece of what you wrote and not the main crux of it so apologies for that.

      That said, I don’t really understand the mud concern. Can someone explain that to me? Is it just a footing/pita thing or is there some lurking danger/barrier with it I’m missing?

      • The “mud thing” has been fenn telling us to wait for the mud to dry before searching. Common sense really… basically saying wait for a good time of year to search, no swollen creek, slipper slopes, snow, below freezing tempt. etc.
        Only now we have an answer that has been asked many time… when did he hide the chest… summer.
        Ok that aligns with wait until the mud dries, line of thinking. But why not answer that question years back if all it is for is to keep our feet dry? Is ‘summer’ something we should consider when attempting to solve a clue or clues -?- that may explain how to figure out a task we may need to do on site… something to “plan” for and / or something to “observe”?

        Take fenn’s Q&A about; in 3009 the movement of the RM’s will have an impact and make it more difficult to find the chest… Does the natural movement of the land impact a specific time of year that the chest can be found?.. Which in this case would only be in summer for some reason.

        I’m not really suggesting this is accurate. It is an exercise in the attempt to align as many ATF’s to each other, to see how true each ATF can work with each other. Other information we have that seems to align with the above ATF’s is what we were told from the start… Follow the clues precisely… which mean exactly.

        • Seeker two thoughts;

          Why summer? One possible reason would be that the height of the sun in summer as opposed to winter (or spring or fall) may affect the amount of sunlight that enters a particular space – Like a crevice in a canyon wall – That type of thinking. Summer lets in more sunlight into an area that may be dark in other times of the year.

          Maybe that is why he said to bring a flashlight and a sandwich – HUMMM?

          Summer is also the time of year when waters have “Settled in”. By this I mean – In winter waters are frozen, and maybe we need water to flow in order to follow it in some way. Spring, we have the run-off – water moving too fast and maybe dangerous. Maybe in spring a small stream rumbles down a mountain, and later (in summer) it goes underground in spots for a while – and this is needed info. In the fall, all of the snows have melted, and maybe our stream has dried up = Summer is the only time of the year when all of the needed conditions are present for us to follow the leads in the poem – Just a possibility.

          Why “follow the clues precisely? Let’s say that you can find your “Heavy Loads” spot (Far left point on an equilateral triangle) and your “Water High” (Far right corner) and the TC is the top point of the triangle.

          Maybe – IF you go from HL spot to TC spot you will miss seeing an important “marker” along the way BUT if you go from HL to WH and then down to TC spot, you will see this important “marker” – One reason to “follow the clues precisely.” Just a thought. JDA

          • JDA,
            I’m not really looking for answers to the ideas, as much as, the thought of how many ATF’s,.. [that at one time didn’t mean much of anything]… now years later… seem to align with other ATF.

            I’m not saying your ideas are not good or bad. Your just jumping ahead.
            We all can come up with a thought for any of them… Again, the idea is to evaluate the ATF in a manner that they all will work together in an honest fashion.

            Almost all call fenn a wordsmith… lets utilize what we have been told… without the excuse of 85% truth only… and see how all of fenn’s ATF’s hold true to each other.
            It may give more thought to how the poem was intended to be see through fenn’s eyes.

            It’s that check and balance I have been chatting about. We beg for the bones, why not chew on them all, and not just pick and choose one that work only for a solve we like, and dismiss what doesn’t.

            Call it the big picture affect of the ATF’s if you like.

        • After being out there last weekend I can say that the mud is a real concern. I sank nearly waste deep a couple of times. In some spots it was like walking on jello. I had the choice to plow through mud or seek higher ground on and walk the creek on a hill through trees. Neither was a great option. The thought getting stuck in mud deeper than the bear spray at the waist with a bear looming made me remember watching a polar bear at the zoo eating a fish like a Popsicle.

          If a person’s solve is near a creek waiting till July to search it is a good idea.

          • Yo. Aaron can you kinda giive me an idea as to what the type area you were hiking in was it tree covered what made the conditions so bad you sunk so deep. What altitude are you searching and state just concerned about mid as well. Thanks in advance.

    • I agree with you seeker. Although the three solutions that I have come up with in two and a half years have placed me on a creek, there is nothing in the poem that says search in the creek. I try not to think of ATF comments, because they can be read differently by each of us. I wouldn’t be surprised if when the chest is found that it was whet. I also wouldn’t be surprised that if it is in fact wet, then it will be something along the lines of how FF explained to us about moisture. I don’t have the exact quote, but you seasoned searchers know what I’m referring to. FF once said something to the effect that anything can get wet in the Rocky mountains. You can dig 6″ down into the ground and it will be wet.
      That line made me think of humidity. He could have placed it on a rock, perhaps near water, but completely dry and because of the humidity in the air the chest may be wet due to the bronze’s ability to draw moisture from the air causing it to be cold to the touch. Just a thought. I won’t even call it an opinion because opinion is constantly evolving.

    • Seeker,
      Not sure if this is the kind of thing you want to discuss but I think one of the more cryptic blueprint related, ATF’s was: “The blueprint is challenging so the treasure may be located by the one who can best adjust.” Everyone wants to apply one technique to solving the poem but this seems to signal that there are some zigs and zags to throw folks off course. Look at all the recently posted solves….all very linear with a uniform approach throughout. To use a Hollywood chase scene as a metaphor here, image that after Clues 1-2 (maybe 3) Forest has turned off the headlights and made a hard left into a dark alley while the chasers speed past (missing the turn) and ending up on the ‘rocks’ as Ken mentioned. Can you imagine a puzzle like this without a good twist thrown in?

      If you couple this quote with all the other ATFs regarding the importance of the first clues it seems likely that those first 2-3 clues must be interpreted differently, applied differently, solved differently, or are based on some alternative architecture which most searchers aren’t cueing on. Up thread I proposed the idea that these might be followed more mentally rather than physically but there are plenty of other options to consider. I may be just stating the obvious here but there has got to be something very different about those first couple clues. You have consistently asked: ‘Why do people go past the remaining 7 clues after possibly solving the first couple clues?’ This could be the answer….Failure to adjust at the proper time to the poems/blueprints abrupt change in style.

      • Colokid;

        I see it as inattention to the posted road signs.

        If you are zipping along at 80 MPH down a freeway, listening to the radio or god-forbid texting or talking on the phone – and you do not notice the sign that says “Put In” point or “Meek Place here” or hoB – you will drive right past where you need to exit. The next exit might be 10 miles down the road. You have to be aware of where you are as you speed down the canyon. For me, the “put in” point (below the hoB) is easy to miss because the hoB MAY not be very recognizable as THE hoB.

        hoB MAY be the most difficult “thing” to figure out. Is it a person, place or thing for that matter. Can it be a combination of some kind? A place that relates to a thing for example? Like clue #1, hoB MUST be nailed down, or you will go right past it – Ys gotta pay attention to the road signs! – IMO – JDA

        • JD,
          Maybe I don’t understand your response. I’m not talking about miss-interpreting a clue (missing a turn). I’m suggesting that the referenced ATF suggests a twist in how you solve or use different clues. Seekers topic asked for generic discussion on ATF’s not individuals preferred solve technique.

          Let me give a more complicated example. Ever read Poe’s Gold Bug? The treasure hunt is made up of several different segments. One requires decrypting a message, another part requires solving a riddle, another requires traveling to a spot and making an observation. Different techniques all rolled into one solve…a complex blueprint that requires adjusting to different methods mid solve.

          Not saying this is a prototype for what F did, but kind of that idea.

          • Your Gold Bug analogy is a good way of looking at the ATF’s [ I wish I thought of that for an example, thanks ]
            Fenn’s poem may not work exactly like that but it should bring together that big picture affect.
            I think the AFT’s should do the same… IF they can be aligned with each other to bring out a thought process of how fenn sees the poem unfolding.

            Step away from your solve or attempting any solve… as Colokid stated; Seekers topic asked for generic discussion on ATF’s not individuals preferred solve technique.
            The individual searcher can do as they please with anything commented here. I’m just utilizing the brain power of the blog to provoke a conversation of the ATF’s possible abilities to be seen as a whole and not individual ATF’s.

          • Seeker;

            I see where you want to lead us, I am just not sure that one can look at ALL – THOUSANDS – of ATF comments that Forrest has made, and from this pile of comments figure out the “Big Picture” that you seem to feel Forrest has been trying to paint.

            You seem to be saying that all of Forrest’s ATF comments have been trying to lay out a blueprint that can be used by any searcher to figure out the riddles. Forrest has said that the poem is a map, and that this map will lead to Indulgence. Any map has landmarks, landmarks that can be seen and observed. Is there a “blueprint” needed in order to read the map? This would be unique IMO.

            Sure, there are “Layers” to the map that involve time. What did a particular area look like 4.5 Billion years ago, or 4.5 Million years ago, or 4,500 years ago or even 450 days ago. This is the “Big Picture” of this particular area, and probably has a significant role in figuring out the WHY of Forrest choosing this area. But is this a “blueprint” that Forrest has been drawing for us with all of his ATF’s? How will knowing this “Big Picture” lead me to an exact 10″ X 10″ X 5″ plot of ground? I am just not getting the connection that you want us to find Seeker. Maybe I am just dense – and probably am – JDA

          • Seeker;

            I have JCM’s – “Chasing Words of Forrest Fenn – by Topic and by date.” Under the “By Topic” there is a menu of 25 “subjects”. Each of these “subjects” contain multiple quotes from Forrest about that particular “Subject” or “Topic.” As one reads down this list of 25 “Subjects” there does not appear (at least to me) an under-laying theme that you seem to feel exists. Do you see what I am not seeing?

            What do YOU think that the under-laying Theme of all of Forrest’s ATF comments is? I Know that you are just asking a “WhatIF” kind of question hoping we will “THINK” about something that we may not normally think about, but it would be nice if you offered your opinion as well – JDA

          • Seeker;

            Let me give it one more go.

            Read – Analyze – Think. Use your imagination. Think about the WhatIF’s.

            I do not know how to summarize Forrest’s ATF’s more than the above.

            Read – Read the poem over and over
            Read the books looking for hints
            Read the ATF’s looking for FACTS and HINTS

            Analyze all that you have read. Look for the WHY’s of what you have read.

            Think – Think DEEPLY, not just superficially. THINK about what the line in the poem MIGHT mean, not just what it SAYS. Think about HOW a particular story in any of the three books MIGHT be telling a story that is deeper than just what the words say.

            Think deeply within-the-box, but also think outside-the-box. Don’t accept the obvious.

            Use your imagination – Apply your imagination to all of the above. “Imagine like a child” – Imagine like a scientist or inventor – Imagine the world as it once was “Once upon a while” – a LONGGGGG while ago. Imagine the world as it might be in a thousand-thousand tomorrows.

            Use Seeker’s WhatIF’s – WhatIF a “No place for the meek” is not a dangerous place, but more an idea? WhatIF “heavy Loads” means more than a burden? Could it relate to water? Water weighs 8 lbs. per gallon. Or could it relate to a “lode” and not a load? WhatIF “down” means “Down the road or canyon – which is actually “UP”?

            Beyond these “ways of thinking” I see no “blueprint Seeker. Maybe you can help direct our thoughts – It is obvious that you feel that there is “something” here we are not seeing. – 🙂 ????? JDA

        • Well put Colo and JDA. If a person finds the correct WWWH then it stands to logic that the CD is easy. From there the rails fall off. I believe that the people that found the first two clues only understood the physical locations that they point to. Because TFTW and HoB rely more on the solving the poem than finding spots on a map they wonder off. They go too far and pass everything.

          I would not be surprised if there are physical points in the vicinity that could throw them off if they have not solved the poem. Why would they go search in the first place if they only had two clues? Maybe a nearby river that has brown trout or a spot where a guy named Brown lived, or a Brown Canyon, waterfall, creek, you name it. They are bamboozled by false interpretations of the clues.

          • Hi Guys, ive kept my big mouth shut for a few weeks because im not gonna be able to travel to the US this year so I wish you all good luck (Not to much) 🙂 in your searches but hope that Indulgence will still be ‘In The Wood” next search season, but I would just like to say that IMO if you can’t work out why the little girl in india can’t get pass the first two clues then I would throw the towel in now.

          • Sorry you can not cross the pond this year. Maybe Forrest’s gut is wrong, and it will still be “In the wood” when you come over next year – JDA

          • * * * * Butch suggested – ” . . . IMO if you can’t work out why the little girl in india can’t get past the first two clues then I would throw the towel in now.” * * * *

            She ” . . . cannot get closer than the first two clues.”

            Rephrasing the negative to a positive, does this mean she “CAN get as close as the first two clues”?

            And then would this in turn mean that she can get within 200 feet of the chest?

            Could that change your formulation to “if you can’t work out how the girl in india can get within 200 feet of the chest . . .(etc)”?

            Or are you on a different track with your enigmatic challenge?


          • Thank you JDA only time will tell but like us all I know my solve is right :)……Jake I think your mixing up the comments Mr Fenn said people have been within 500ft (200ft is still debatable as to wether he said that) however he didn’t say the LGII was within 200FT he said she couldn’t get pass the first 2 clues.

          • * * * * Jake I think your mixing up the comments * * * *

            Well, not so much mixing them up as putting separate comments together in search of consistencies (in the spirit of Seeker’s running theme in this current iteration of Odds ‘n’ Ends).

            He really did write that she “cannot get closer than the first two clues.” An odd way of phrasing it.

            But if you don’t acknowledge any of his “200 feet” statements, then I get that where I was taking it won’t make any sense.

            You didn’t answer my question though – what did YOU mean by ‘if you can’t work out why (ff’s girl-in-India statement)’?


          • Oh! sure, Jake, blame me for your mix up… lol.

            But in the spirit world… if many have been within 500′ and some near the 66 yards from the goal line, yet no one can find the blaze without nailing down the first clue, or seemingly any other clue even though the walk right on by them… I don’t see how anyone can get closer then the first two clues…. um, in the spirit world, that is.

      • Colokid,
        The thought process is there… you used the adjustment video the same way I’m attempting to see the ATF’s.
        We read the poem one way [ one way and most popular is; linear, as you point out ]
        So now you think we need to adjust at this point in the poem [seems logical… it is where all have had their butts kicked].

        Now lets try and align ATF’s that have been mentioned with that say thought of the Adjustment Statement. I can think of a few… can you add to it?
        One comment might be “thinking down the road.” Do we need to adjust to a time period of thought, and think of the past and future as well?[ just a quick example]

        Or could the adjustment comment refer to other ATF’s like you mentioned … a wrong turn or not turning… is there an other comment[s] that would align with that thought?

        But yes… the idea is to use the ATF’s to “handshake” with others that could Adjust the idea of the poem being read only one way… your example; linear only.

        • Seeker,
          Handshaking-wise I would add to my thought with a couple of things.
          Ken said: “The fact remains that at the juncture of the first two clues, and beyond, the ship has run aground.” Well put.

          So what else do we have related to the first couple of clues. The little girl from India springs to mind. Why can’t she get closer? Many want to create excuses for her like ‘she doesn’t have the right map’, or ‘she’s not in the US’ etc, and they forget his other quote: “… It might just as well have been a boy from Waxahatchee, where my father was born, or an Arab kid from Marrakech”. So it’s a universal problem not specific to Lil Indy and it supports the idea that something is radically different about the first two clues.

          The list of ATF’s suggesting a disconnect between clues 1-2 (maybe 3) and the rest of the poem is long. What about (paraphrasing) ‘solve the first two clues and your half way there’?

          To me there’s a theme to all these ‘first two clues’ comments.

    • WOW Seeker ! Can-O- Worms comes to mind…right out of the gate! As I write this… Lug and JDA are hitting the ball back and forth about how they interpret what Fenn has meant in his comments about the first two clues….and folks who have figured them.
      I believe the ATF are a definite TOOL…if utilized with an open *mind*. You have mentioned, as Colo said below…WHY have folks F’…d up after the 1st two clues consistently. Middle of last year I threw everything out the window and am now hell bent on a different tactical approach. Remember that *know beforehand*…*sure for the one* ? That is where I am at.

    • Seeker…I made an earlier post on this but I must have used a swear or something…or it just did not go through. CAN-O-WORMS is the first thought!
      The ATF are definitely a TOOL to be used if used with an open mind and not to make an assumption. As I was writing the earlier comment …JDA and Lug were playing tennis with their interpretation of what Fenn meant in his comments about folks figuring the first two clues. That is typical and understandable given the circumstances.
      Here’s a quick one…Colo mentioned it below. I think this is a good one to balance out with the ATF. *know beforehand*…* certain for the one* and how those comments follow in line with all of his comments about *figuring/deciphering* the nine clues and going right straight to the treasure chest. If one takes all of preconceived opinions out of the equation…the many comments align with the notion that a searcher can *follow* the clues in their mind…1- at least 8…maybe ninth without going anywhere except maybe to the coffee pot. I think this may be a glaring example of how Fenn may repeatedly say something because folks are just not getting it….

      • I hear ya Ken,
        I’m hoping folks will look at this without their solves in mind. The conversation you mention was only about the first two clues… been there done that.
        I’d like to see how JDA, Lugz, or anyone can align other ATF’s with those mentioned. An Attempt to see how fenn’s comments over the years connect with each other.

        I’m gonna pick on Zap here for a moment [ no disrespect intended Zap ]… He seems to read some of those first two clues comments as individual to the other… Example; the first two clue solvers may not be the searcher who were either within 500′ or 200′ or even on foot near the chest.
        Yet I have attempted to give other ATF’s comments to align with the thought that they should be all one in the same… Not unlike, some think fenn talked about tourist being at the first two clues because he used the word “others” Yet fenn as used words like “people” “others” “some” referring to searchers.

        This isn’t about arguing one point of idea [ that is what Zap and I have done in the past]…
        it about seeing the AFT’s work with each other for an understanding of what fenn comments over the years align with All the ATF as true to each other. I wish I had a better way of saying that… but that is all i’m attempting here for conservation.

        • I will just say this and then will let this thread be for now. I see where you may want the ATF to come together and “align” so as to get a feel for how Fenn was thinking when building the poem. It is a great concept and that is how my current ideas are helping me to shape my reading of the poem.
          Already…there is resistance because of preconceived notions and until folks reconcile the idea that their individual solve is probably wrong, in part…or totally…the comments will be biased. Nothing aimed in any direction…just the hard truth.
          Like Fenn said, if you want the truth, go next door to the psych. dept.
          Before I head off to do a little *dirt fishin’*… ahhh…never mind.

          • ken ~ ‘Already…there is resistance because of preconceived notions and until folks reconcile the idea that their individual solve is probably wrong, in part…or totally…the comments will be biased.’

            Yep, I get that it’s hard to let go of one’s own notions. And I may not have describe the exercise properly.
            But that is what is needed and the reason for trying this… let go of those notions and look at what we have been told in a lump sum.
            It’s not really any difference than looking at the book to help… I’m just seeing if those ATF can be thought of as the same. The thing is… fenn wrote a book of memoirs, and within some of it are helpful info, if we can recognize them.

            The ATF were Interviews, Q&A’s, statements mainly/directly about the poem… that information… doesn’t have all the fluffinutter of a well told story that may or may not have anything to do with the poem.

            Colokid posted Little Indy’s Q&A again, with the added comment from fenn. That addition {another ATF} cleaned up a lot of nonsense and excuses [ has Colokid explained ] And it’s that kinda use of ATF’s I’m attempting to discuss.
            Yet Just below his post there is a response; she doesn’t know anything about fishing. Only there is no comments, statements, any ATF ever stating that….

            So, I’m pickin up whatcha ya puttin down, ken.

            Personally I see the ATF as ~ the idea of Synergy; The whole is greater than it’s individual parts.

            I’ll let this ride for now as well… But I’m tending to agree with you.

          • Ayup…scratched the itch and found a couple of keepers…couple of Buffalo nickels.
            Where were we in this mess? I’ll touch back on the premise of following the ATF through the given timeline and using them to support each other. Going on the *thought* of the many comments from Fenn about how to find the treasure….tied to my earlier *know beforehand* blah blah. Oh yeah…the “well known and well discussed” quote that Colo reposted ties into this as well.
            ” You’re going to have to figure out the clues, go to the first clue, and then the clues are consecutive after that. If you can decipher the clues you’re gonna find that treasure chest.” This is from The Lure 2017
            ” They’re gonna have to figure out the clues, decipher what they say and go right straight to the treasure chest.” New Zealand 2013
            ” One man asked if he should buy a topographic map and I told him he’d be better served reading the book again. All you have to do *is think about the nine clues* and follow them in order…” 8/23/2011
            There are many more of these similar comments. These all seem to indicate that the clues can be…must be deciphered before even going to the first clue(wwwh). The *deciphered* clues in tandem I believe answers the riddle…not riddles…riddle, and if you follow it in your mind will show you on a map where to go. Before that…canasta every time.
            Every statement says figure/decipher and then go find it. What comes to mind also is the infamous *thinking and planning* comments that support this as well.
            Where’s the Riddler when you need him ? Riddle me this Batman !

          • OK…I’ll try this again. My posts are heading off into cyber-space or something….
            2017 The Lure
            You’re going to have to figure out the clues, go to the first clue, and then the clues are consecutive after that. If you can decipher the clues, you’re gonna find that treasure chest.”
            New Zealand 2013
            ” They’re gonna have to figure out the clues, decipher what they say and go right straight to the treasure chest.”
            “One man asked if he should buy a topographic map and I told him he would be better served reading the book again. All you have to do is *think about the nine clues* and follow them in order…”
            There are many comments from Fenn on how to find the treasure, and they all pretty much seem to indicate that it is imperative to decipher the clues before even heading off to the first one. This brings in the “well known and well discussed” comment that has rarely even been touched on here….this one reposted recently by Colokid and last time by Loco last year. * At least in your mind…* comment. This ties in very neatly with the *thinking and planning* comments as well and comes full circle right back to the reason why the failure rate is what it is. Nobody has solved the COMPLETE riddle…not riddles…riddle from start to finish before heading off to wherever. Folks figure the first two clues and SLAM…the door shuts. There are more ATF that tie together in this fashion and I believe Seeker gets high marks for bringing this topic up again….

          • Ken/Seeker,
            Something Ken said triggered some thoughts that I believe don’t get discussed enough. The idea is, why is it that we absolutely have to have clue 1 before we can get anywhere else with the poem? What keeps us from solving clues in the middle without first having solved clue 1? Why are there no shortcuts? Think about it….we don’t have any better information about WWWH then any of the other clues so what’s stopping us from figuring out the others the same way we figure out clue 1?

            Let’s look at the standard model for solving the poem. 1) Guess a WWWH and find it on the map, 2) now look at the map and convince yourself that surrounding features line up with succeeding clues. (‘Hey if I follow this nearby canyon for 10 miles I come to Browns Mt…..this is just too coincidental…this has to be the solve!!’)

            The presumption seems to be that once you know “where” WWH is (on a map) then that is what “identifies” all the other clues. 100% failure rate. Granted, the unknown location of #1 could be what insulates us from moving forward in the poem but it’s not very robust and F seems sure we can’t go anywhere without #1. Is it just the multitude of possible WWH’s that’s holding us back or is there something different about 1 that we need to discover?

            But wait: people have been to the first 1-2 clues. They were at the ‘unknown location’ and still we have 100% failure rate. How can the ‘unknown location’ of #1 be the firewall that prevents solving the subsequent clues? How can you be there at the start and still go astray…..(now I’m starting to sound like Seeker). Ha

            Does figuring out 1 provide some other information (besides location) that augments unlocking the others? We’re missing something guys. There seems to be something very different with 1-2 that prevents us from proceeding. It may be that no one will be successful until they figure out this disconnect/firewall.

          • Colokid…that is the question of the century. It seems rather glaring that folks can figure out the first two clues…it has been done since early on. I believe the answer to the riddle starts with the first clue and definitively ends at the treasure…hence continuous/contiguous/in order. Without the answer to all of the clues it has been impossible for those folks to successfully flow through the clues correctly as designed.

          • Ken,
            “Without the answer to all of the clues it has been impossible for those folks to successfully flow through the clues correctly as designed.”

            But isn’t this a ‘chicken-egg- scenario? Must have all the answers to figure out the answers?

          • What nobody accepts is that the big puzzle is precisely the WWWH.

            Break the WWWH and all clues will shine.

            The key word is to understand the WWWH.

            “at where”? “on what”? “in what”? warm waters “halt”?

            Imagination is very efficient for this. IMO

          • Colo…My post directly above yours…from The Lure interview 2017 ” You’re going to have to figure out the clues(,) go to the first clue(,) and then the clues are consecutive after that. My premise is that solving the underlying riddle(the nine clues) will enable a searcher to match that to the correct area and pinpoint the end. I emphasized the commas above in the quote. All of these comments have Fenn saying the same thing…solve the clues… then go to the treasure location by starting at the first clue. He has also indicated (the poem) is a map (look at the poem as if it were a map, because it is…). I do not believe the searcher needs to do the solve in the field thrashing around. I always stay alert to that *important possibility*.
            Then of course…there is that…*in theory* comment…school kids mail, and I believe the actual botg scenario is where the work comes to fruition…actually locating that spot in the field.

          • MC B….How can that be ? Many searchers have figured/deciphered the first two clues. I believe that the disconnect, or problem is at that point…between 2nd and 3rd. Fenn has commented that folks have left the poem at that juncture.

          • Colokid,

            If the simplest answer would be [ of course, imo ] ~ Everyone left the poem.
            Some say this is the result of not knowing the next clue… Ok sure, But if that all it is… why the heck couldn’t searchers discover hoB or Meek or HL n WH… I mean, some here have searched their area dozens of times, right?

            It’s the ideas and questions like this was my attempt to talk about the ATF’s.
            Fenn said: they didn’t quit, the left the poem, said: searchers went by the remaining clues, said: the first two clue solvers walked by the chest. Said some were within 500′ and some at the 200′ area…
            Maybe I’m not as bright as I am good lookin… but ya don’t have to hit me in the head twice with a tire tool to tell me… everyone walked away from the location.

            Now just for fun, lets shimmy down memory lane… if you don’t have the first clue nailed down stay home. It would be impossible to find the “blaze” without nailing down the first clue. IF you can’t find the chest GO BACK to the first clue. You won’t know you have the FIRST CLUE until the chest is found.

            LOL… “left the poem” “Go back to clue one” Don’t leave home without it…First clue and the chest… Anyone seeing a pattern here?
            The poem revolves around the location of the first clue, not as the starting point, but as the answer that starts to put the poem together by fenn’s blueprint.

            So, IMO… the first and most fatal flaw in everyone’s theories is… they keep going, away from wwwh.
            The next thought is, WWH, HoB, HLnWH are all places [spots] at WWWH. So basically I’m suggesting the search location is much small than it sounds.

            The other possible idea for the lack of solved clues might be, reading the poem wrong. Such as “take it in” to mean a movement rather than an observation [ which so many never have in the write ups they post.]
            It is also quite possible, plausible that we need to view the remaining clues at a specific point at WWWH… the nail down [ or as I like to call it ~ to keep fix ~ part of the clues, line of thinking.

            I’m sure some one will remind me that fenn said we don’t circle back to wwwh… I’m not… I’m not leaving it.

            WAIT! what about if we knew home of Brown we go right to the chest and we would not be concerned about wwwh if we knew hoB.
            Ah! HoB is one of two thing… the place where this all takes place and how we find the correct wwwh out of the many… and/or the clues to where the chest lay in wait [indulgence home]… but we need to find the blaze to know exactly where the chest is at.

            Ken said; ‘Without the answer to all of the clues it has been impossible for those folks to successfully flow through the clues correctly as designed.’

            I agree to a point. fenn stated to marry the clues to “A place” on a map. which lines up with the thought of staying fix in “A place”… So technically we should be able to find the references to most of the clues, but if all we do is think linear, stomping from point to point miles apart… I have to ask… where does imagination kick in? What about that planning and observing we are told we should do. So is knowing the “references” all we need to do to “complete” the poem’s clues?

            Fenn followed the clues, Why?… because there is no other way. To me, the failure of the searches thus far have given insight to the idea, tat the poem’s clues need to be utilized, observed, and even analyzed on site… we need to “see” the “structure” of the poem’s clues as fenn need to follow them, on site, to complete the poem. Yet we should have a good idea what that is all about by the time we put boots to dirt.

            LOL… That’s my fortune cookie for the day. or I may have had too much sake’

          • Ken,


            “You cannot solve the problem by starting in the middle of the poem. You should start with the first clue and then solve the other eight in order.”f

            “That’s right joseph, you should start with the first clue and follow the others consecutively to the treasure. Hints in the book are not that organized.f”

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

            “Go back to the poem and start with the first clue.”

            I do not think I need to tell the sources.

          • McB,
            I’m gonna add another comment that I think is important and relates to Colokid’s question
            ‘…nobody to my uncertain knowledge has analyzed one important possibility related to the winning solve.’

            Seem to me if the all mighty first clue is the click to the lock the poem… what is it that ‘nobody has analyzed’… It shouldn’t be a later clue, right? Fenn keeps telling us not to worry about later clues until the first clue in “nailed down”

          • Guys…It’s all good. My opinion is that the entire poem needs to be solved to even begin to look for the treasure. Without the first clue as the reference/starting point…I believe that a sure failure will occur…that is a given, as Fenn has said umpteen million times. The remaining clues I believe are really not all that complicated once the *riddle* has been figured out. I believe the answer to the *riddle* derived from the clues directs the searcher to the location where a BOTG searcher will find the blaze. And Seeker…I do not believe the clues are all AT wwwh to be seen or observed from a *take it in* vantage point or anything along those lines. Call it what you will…that’s just my abs talking…and I’ll adhere strictly to that one. I tried that end-around hiding right at the beginning in Snake school…they busted my butt in about two hours. Think about the scenario where Fenn would have used the poem to hide his treasure, then die with it. I don’t believe he would have parked his car at wwwh or anywhere near it. Anyways…it is all in the riddle…for all to see, and I believe someone will eventually figure it out.

          • Ken;

            I have been running a bunch of things through my mind. “Nailed down” – Iron nails in pottery in “Graveyard Logic.” – SB 175 – The Iron Rooster of Santa Fe – Heavy Loads and Water High – and somehow feel that they all must inter-twine in some way. Not sure how yet, not how it will help to solve the riddles, but it has me goin’. Thanks for the conversation – It seems to clear away some of the cobwebs once in a while – JDA

          • Ken,
            We don’t differ much… My point was; to suggest that the poem can’t be fully solved until the find. That may seem obvious to state. But what I mean is, to “complete” the poem we need to be on site.
            References are just that… they tell what points on a map they should be. I still say there is field work needing to be done and not just a hop skip jump to the chest.

            Look at it this way; we are told we have 9 pieces of ‘information’… not so much answers.
            That is what clues are… information.
            The question is; What do we do with those 9 clues / pieces of information?… and it all apparently starts right ‘at’ the first clue.
            I think this may be why fenn stated ‘they left the poem’ and later came out and said ‘he’ followed the clues.
            The idea is; being there is the only way to be ‘precise’… You may not like the blueprint idea… but is seems we need to follow that, to construct the ending. { planning and observation of that information }

            If I had to give an opinion on fenn’s comment about “try and simplify the clues” ~ in part ~ my answer would be… they are all one in the same.

          • Agreed Seeker…one needs to be on-site to find the blaze…starting with the first clue, just like Fenn has said.
            I am going to stick to *answers* in terms of the deciphered clues, because once they are deciphered they become *answers* that tell you where you are on your way to the blaze. Before that they are just an equation of sorts that needs to be figured out in order to utilize them.
            I like the word blueprint…I believe it aptly describes the solution to the riddle as Fenn meant it to be…but what would be the need for a blueprint if you were just in one spot?

          • Ken,
            Just trying to see if I understand your premise. You said:” I believe the answer to the *riddle* derived from the clues directs the searcher to the location where a BOTG searcher will find the blaze.”

            If I understand, you are saying that the 9 clues are solved (together) in a fashion that yields an ultimate location (10th clue if you will, what you are calling the Riddle) and this ultimate location contains the blaze and is the starting point for a BOTG search? Another way, the Riddle is solved by fitting 9 pieces of information together (the 9 clues) and this results in a spot to visit? But this ultimate location is not associated with any of the previous clue locations…like WWWH?

            Am I getting it?

          • Colokid…Here goes…if you fiddle with the riddle long enough, I think It falls together into a *blueprint* that starts at the first clue and ends at the treasure location…all inclusive, and associated to each, and exclusive to wwwh. I said *I think*…but I had better add IMO…

          • Ken,
            Think about that question if you were fenn on site and having to follow the clues.
            I mean, sure if there is one way in and out he would have to follow… umm err, wait… that’s not following, that is just going by, Right?!
            LOL if it is that simple that the clues are all along a trail… why the heck doesn’t anyone figure out a later clues-?- and continue from there? There are seven left, right? I can’t believe all those searchers only went to wwwh without any thought to all the later clues.

            So I see your point that we should figure out them prior, But even that doesn’t seem to connect the later clues… how hard is it to look at a map and say… Hmm this place and that place look like this clue and that clue, and not find it or get to it in the field.

            Ok I just reread my last paragraph and i don’t even like the way it came out. so lets try this thought… If ya knew hoB you’d go right to the chest… LOL would that no work for any and all later clues as well [ is we just follow point to point ]? So if that is not possible… how can we figure them out at home and still walk right by them all? I may have to by stock in contact lenses, cuz everyone is blind. lol

            You keep saying riddle… I keep saying Fixed location… they can be one in the same. It all depends on how you read the plain english wording in the poem.

            PS. I enjoy the chatter you bring…

          • This thread is probably as long as Fenn’s ball of string!
            I keep saying riddle because I *believe* the deciphered clues all wadded together can confirm the end spot location before the journey even leaves the front door.
            That “in theory” part is where the botg/work makes it into the adventure as intended…and I do not think that part is to be underestimated.

          • Yep that was a long climb…
            Ken, you didn’t answer the question though.
            Why would fenn have to do as us if the riddle can be done at home?

            Hypothetical; fenn go to the location he parked at. He knows the riddle, he knows the location like the back of his hand, he know the clue’s references… yada yada yada, yet he has said there is no other way to do this unless you follow the 9 clues… “to his knowledge” Right?

            Why did ‘he’ follow them? any of them, even the last clue, when he is holding all the answers, created all the answers, and on his way to hide the chest.
            Unless there is work to be done in the field by not only us, but fenn himself to “complete (completed?)” the poem.

            I’m gonna put this quote back up and be fair and think about it for a while with my post in mind…

            “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.”

          • Seeker…I don’t really need to think about it. The answer to the riddle I believe makes all of the ATF ring true…even your last…which I also believe is a true testament to the difficulty involved in wrapping the mind around Fenn’s plan…and yet he tells us to show it to a kid and they may have an advantage that he is not willing to expand on, other than they have better eyesight and they’re agile.

          • Hi Colokid — some commentary on the first part of your post a mile above.

            “… why is it that we absolutely have to have clue 1 before we can get anywhere else with the poem? What keeps us from solving clues in the middle without first having solved clue 1? Why are there no shortcuts? Think about it….we don’t have any better information about WWWH then any of the other clues so what’s stopping us from figuring out the others the same way we figure out clue 1?”

            Since Forrest is adamant that the only way to solve his poem is by first figuring out the starting point (WWWH), it must mean that there is a deliberately designed, discoverable, unique answer to WWWH. At first glance it would seem that, like you said, we have no better information about WWWH than we do about home of Brown or the blaze or any of the other clues. And yet, Forrest says we will fail if we start in the middle — that the clues must be solved in order. So it would seem that the only way that home of Brown, for instance, gets singled out is by its proximity to or association with WWWH.

            “Let’s look at the standard model for solving the poem. 1) Guess a WWWH and find it on the map, 2) now look at the map and convince yourself that surrounding features line up with succeeding clues.”

            That method will fail every time, IMO. No one is going to just guess WWWH — it’s not that kind of place. My WWWH is the geographical solution to the combination of a metaphor and a single (non-poem) word. It’s actual a clever lock-and-key type architecture: the key without the metaphor solution is useless, and vice versa.

      • Hi Seeker: I believe I understand and appreciate the goal(s) of your exercise regarding the evolution of Fenn’s ATF comments, and whether that can provide some insight into his thought processes or a means of deciphering his many “Fennisms.”

        You brought up the two-clue solvers, who may or may not be identical to the 500-foot-clubbers (or 200-foot clubbers). The ATFs give us some guidance. For one thing, we know that not all 500-footers were 200-footers (you know the quote). There is also the possibility that non-searchers continue to arrive at WWWH, depending on how we read the Emily ATF:

        December 2013: “Dear Emily, Searchers continue to figure the first two clues and others arrive there and don’t understand the significance of where they are. f”

        Admittedly, there are at least two ways of interpreting this quote. One is:

        1. Searchers continue to figure the first two clues and other (non-searchers) arrive there and don’t understand the significance of where they are.

        2. (Some) searchers continue to figure the first two clues, and other (searchers) arrive there and don’t understand the significance of where they are.

        This second interpretation is perhaps more likely to be the correct one, since otherwise Forrest is seemingly speculating that non-searchers arrive there (since non-searchers would have no cause to report where they’ve been to Forrest, and most likely have never heard of him). Of course, if WWWH is a popular destination (e.g. Old Faithful), it wouldn’t really be speculating on Forrest’s part — he would know for a fact that non-searchers go there.

        But let’s assume option 2 *is* the correct interpretation. What would this tell us? Actually, quite a lot! It would mean searchers PHYSICALLY arrive at WWWH — some by design, and some by accident. If so, WWWH is obviously not in the middle of nowhere. But this is actually the same conclusion that is reached if you assume option 1 is correct: the only way that non-searchers would arrive at WWWH *and* Forrest would know it, is if WWWH is a popular spot like a tourist destination.

        So here is an example of using an ATF and logic that results in a rather helpful conclusion: that WWWH is not in the middle of nowhere, thus ruling out a huge fraction of the four-state area.

        But maybe there is a third interpretation of that ATF that still allows for WWWH to be a remote, off-the-beaten path, spot? (I don’t think there is, but maybe someone can twist the words in such a way to allow for that possibility.)

        • 500 feet, 200 feet, nothing in between, nothing closer, nothing farther away. What does that mean?

    • “Forrest, in the 2015 answers to six questions, you answered in part,“What surprises me a little is that nobody to my uncertain knowledge has analyzed one important possibility related to the winning solve.” Is this statement still accurate? ~ Thanks, sumbuddy”
      “Yes sumbuddy, and that is why I recently suggested that searchers consider the what ifs.” ff
      AND … then this:
      Forrest Fenn says:
      March 24, 2016 at 3:56 pm
      A hypothetical example of a “what if” might be, what if I was looking so far ahead that I neglected to notice what was beside me.

      The above ATF, IMO relates to the 200 / 500ft searchers or maybe those passing by on their solution. I believe (IMO) FF is surprised that there was an obvious put in (a place to park), where some may have stopped briefly and left the poem along with those others that just passed by.

      How did all these searches just happen to be in the same area? Combine this with the other ATF’s in regards to WWWH. The coincidence is somewhat obvious: This place is well traveled and marked on all Maps. It’s not off on a road traveled by 4×4 traversing muddy holes. Searches need to get back in the box, So finally:
      “The solve is difficult for many searchers because their minds think the clues are tougher to decrypt than they really are.
      Some say they are trying to think outside the box, as if the solution lies somewhere out there.
      Until now I have resisted telling them to get back in the box where their thoughts are comfortable and flow more easily.” ff
      Think Big – Look at the big picture! It’s a place everyone will say, “Why didn’t I think of that!”

  62. Lugnutz-
    In my original ststement about this word, I said that I had never heard it discussed. I didnt say nobody had ever looked it up. I said I had never heard it discussed. Period. Doesnt mean it hasnt been discussed. It means I didnt hear it. And at least two people taunted my comment so I gave you the word. If you arent interested then fine. However, I think it is important. That is all.

  63. I am curious if anyone has ever heard f make a comment as to the location of the school house he speaks of in TTOTC in the chapter titled In Love With Yellowstone?
    By the way my botg trip to Wyoming yielded me empty hands coming home however I am headed back in August.

  64. JDA, I somewhat agree with Seeker here. If the solve doesn’t produce results do not try to force it to. Maybe attempting to look at the poem a new way is best using fresh eyes. Some of the ATF’s are important IMO but not all of them.

  65. TB, I was around 7000 feet in WY, sometimes a little below and sometimes a little above. There was mud in areas where there were trees and no trees alike. It just depends on the location. In some spots I could easily walk right up to a creek or rive and in others I could not get 15 yards from it without sinking. Walking on lay down trees helps but slows you down. There were patches of snow still just under 8000 feet in areas of shade.

    Good luck.

    • Was higher than that last week. There are deep old snowdrifts in spots, and water is high. It’s not sedan-ready much above 8000 just due to big puddles in the road from the melt. If you have to cross an actual creek, that is an issue for a time yet. You might also have to clear some fallen trees from the path, if you’re the first one up. That said, things are melting rapidly, as they always do this time of year. Yet I was still snowed lightly on. It’s best to call first and ask the appropriate overseers about specific conditions before going. Roads driveable by sedan in summer are not necessarily driveable now.

      • A nod of thanks to all vets, including those that survived and went on to pen great books like Mr Fenn and Mr JD Salinger who was landing on Utah Beach 74 years ago today.

  66. Yea but can’t you retrieve the chest in any weather any time of year?

    • Be careful, and stay safe, and yes, you then should be able to find and retrieve it in any weather – JMO – JDA

  67. the eyes are very important in finding the tc – im sure some of you will say what is frank talking about – but the poem is made of land formations as clues or signs that guide you to the tc – for example – as eye have gone alone – alone is one – there is a land formation that is laying on its side that shows one eye (alone) where he went alone in there (as eye) home of brown is also a land formation that only shows one eye – this is only my opinion but I thought id pass it along

    • Thanks for the comment, Frank. Hope you are feeling better and you are healing quickly.

      • thanks Sandy – yesterday I went to lubbuck tex for my catscan -and tomorrow I go back to lubbuck to see if they got rid of the cancer – its nice to see that you are concern about my well being sandy -I am feeling better I hope to God that its all gone if not we will go to the next step if there is a next step – I will give it my best I will go down fighting thanks for your reply sandy and thanks for hanging in there with me —-frank

        • My prayers are with you frank… may tomorrow be a great day for you… stay strong my friend… until next time..see ya

        • Good luck tomorrow Frank. I wish you the very best. I hope that they “KILLED” it. JDA

          • thanks JDA and Focused – as soon as I get back I will give all of you bad or good the news but I hope like Focused said – I hope tomorrow will be a great day – thank you all —frank

        • thanks to all of you – I have my butt kicking boots on today ken thanks for the prayers JBL and Clint on my way now to lubbuck thanks for the well wishes all

  68. Zaphod73491 on June 4, 2018 at 10:04 pm said:

    Lugnutz: I’m actually speechless that anyone has an alternative interpretation to the necessity to drive some of the clues. But I know you and Seeker feel strongly about this, and who am I to dissuade you.

    But you folks out there following along and snickering at the banter: SHAME ON YOU. Chime in and stop being cowardly spectators. I’m sick of being the only one stating what *I* think is the obvious on this ridiculous subject. Offer your opinion — I don’t care which way or the other, just take a frickin’ stand. Maybe *I* am the outlier and everyone else thinks you walk all the clues.

    But I’m done opining on this subject. It is so blatantly obvious to me that it isn’t even worthy of further commentary. Others can fight that battle with Lugnutz and Seeker — it bores me to tears.


    Zap, FWIW, I don’t think you walk the whole way.

    • Me neither swoot, it is best for me to fly there first. Too long of a drive and especially a walk.

      • Lugnutz: if you have nothing constructive to add, I kindly suggest you shut your pie hole.

    • swwot, please forgive me for asking this . . . why on earth do you discuss a
      subject if it is ridiculous?

      One of the benefits that this blog provides (in addition to a venue for “blowing
      off steam”) is the opportunity for folks to experience the enjoyment of ending a commentary, and then starting it up again minutes later.

      OH!, aye should give some commentary about the chase. Even though the
      TC may be found this summer, the chase will continue to attract people —
      including football players — for years.

      The above is all IMO.

      • “…if it’s ridiculous”? Did I say that? Quite sure that was Zap in a moment of exasperation. Regular followers here know I am a hit and miss poster, often binging when I get some time to read posts. This was a case of me replying some time after Zap posted – and it seems odd because of the time stamps. I can’t (and won’t try to) fix that, as I do not “live on” hoD – but I am a devout peruser. I take what I can get, when I can get it. I do not read other blogs or spend time on other sites concerning Mr. Fenn’s poem unless a link in a post here takes me there. This is, by far, the most even-keeled site concerning the chase – at least when I was first looking for a place to see what other searchers were discussing. I do not think that has changed over the years I have been here.

        Hope that helps explain why my posts sometimes seem oddly timed.

  69. Tbug, well said. I don’t believe it is possible to know or even understand what HoB is without understanding WWWH and how it relates to the solution. Finding a place named Brown and attaching a WWWH to it won’t work IMO.

  70. Sorry again, for being so clueless, but what does ATF stand for? So many references on here and yet no one offers an explanation for noobs passing by who don’t know all your acronyms. TYIA again

      • Is that what it is?

        Anyone? After the Fact?

        This site needs a glossary for all the acronyms haha

        Thanks again, noobie

  71. charlie on June 5, 2018 at 4:44 pm said:

    Don’t get it twisted though, that is for the first timers. With BotG, a searcher may have an idea. and may be correct, as far as the 9 clues, but cannot be positive. Everything is a coincidence until you have the chest. So, whoever can say they have all 9 clues, the truth is, they don’t know even the starting point for sure. (ala, solving the clues compared to solving the clues correctly). There is no knowing what the blaze looks like, or what he really means by hoB. And, trying to solve for wwwh is cannot be done going clue to clue. A starting point cannot be established until you have solved the poem and you know where you are going, IMO.

    Charlie, If I understand what you meant what you said in this last paragraph, I couldn’t disagree more. There are absolutely no coincidences involved in any way in any part of solving the riddle that is the poem, in my opinion. Otherwise, a searcher would never have enough confidence to go into the wood. And anyone could stumble upon it, for that matter. No, I am of the opinion that it will take quite a bit of diligent thought into solving it. There won’t be any coincidences. Will the finder know all the answers to all nine clues before they go into the wood – well, for that answer, for now, I will say, we’ll see.

  72. Warning, shameless plug ahead: If you have never seen the movie entitled “October Sky” you need to. It’s mainly about the dawn of the space race and how it affects four boys that live in a coal mining town in West Virginia. In it, Homer, the lead character, realizes that if he is going to clear his name for a forest fire, he’s going to have to put in the time to learn some stuff.

    See clip: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RJhUWcpLfoc

    Unfortunately, I couldn’t find any clips of/from the movie where he and Quinton are in the wood and find their one lost rocket, in a creek, without a paddle. The point I am hoping to make with this post is this: it is my opinion that until someone puts in enough time to figure out the “Fenn Equation”, none of us will find the “lost rocket”. This is no slight towards any/many of you that have already put in countless hours in your solutions. But until one of us has the confidence of the Rocket Boys to go into the wood, we should stay home and play Canasta/work the equation some more.

    • So….trigonometry is the key? Not to digress, but another classic trig reference in cinema — as Joel (young Tom Cruise) is flying around corners in daddy’s Porsche, his high school buddy in back seat deadpans “I can’t believe I have a trig mid term tomorrow and I’m being chased by Guido the Killer Pimp.”

      Your analogy is well considered. Unless a searcher has done the math (marrying clues to a point on the map), why bother stumbling around the woods. I remember the scene with them pacing off (1-1/4mi!) and the successful result. Great scene in a great movie, indeed.

      But then I’m conflicted. On one hand, it’s not the find, it’s the chase that should matter. Fenn achieves his objective everytime someone hauls the kids out for a search without having calculated the trajectory correctly so to speak. They experience wildness and that in and of itself can be a good thing. Boy Scouts, Outward Bound, NOLS, etc prove this each and every year.

      On the other hand, if they then become one of the 84 inconsiderate morons who had campfires in the Santa Fe NF over Memorial Day weekend when it was clearly and abundantly posted that they should not due to the most extreme fire danger, and could have sparked a 100 thousand acre wild fire, and DID cause the Forest Service to prohibit access to those of us who would be fire aware, then by all means — those morons should stay home and play with whatever their little incompletely formed minds get pleasure from.

      • Aardvarkbark,

        FWIW, and a bit of a personal digress – if finding Indulgence means multiple trips to the same locale to “figure things out”, then it won’t be me taking home Indulgence. I simply do not have that kind of time to “knock about the woods” like I did when I was a teenager, when I practically lived in them.

        If, on the other hand, one can figure out the “Fenn Equation” and then take a trip to spend a few days in the wood confirming the theory, then it could be me. Right now, I cannot afford to commit more than that amount of time to this chase. If it has not been picked up by the time I retire (7 to 10 years from now), then things will change and I will have more time to tickle this fancy.

        I’m a patient man, and somewhat confident that it will be me or someone else that thinks along the same lines as me that will pick it up. I do not think that is arrogance speaking, just hard reality. Cracking the code of the poem is paramount to success.

        • I agree with this. Based on my spot, my “search” could take as little as an hour or two and I’ll either have found it or I’ll be able to say confidently enough that I was wrong.

          I’ve got a few nearby spots as not-confident backups that I’ll check out because I’m there, but those will take the same amount of time or less.

          I don’t understand the two-week search trips or the need to return to the same place multiple times. It just seems like that is more of a needle in a haystack style approach rather than figuring out all the clues/moving with confidence.

          But that’s just me and to each their own so IMO IMO IMO disclaimers.

          • Since I have not found Indulgence, I can not claim that my approach is the correct one. I can only say that I have learned a lot on my previous 17 trips to the same general area.

            I feel that the poem has “led” me to the places that I have been – right or wrong.

            If I do find her – that will be proof enough that my methodology was correct. If I do NOT find her, I have had a wonderful time, lots of family get-togethers in a beautiful area, and I have had one heck of a “thrill” chasing a dream – JDA

          • I’m a relatively new searcher, started sometime in March and spent about 3 weeks solving the poem. I wrote software to filter through all named features at the proper elevation using definitions and synonyms from the poem and narrowed it down to about 4 locations. I have ruled out Beaverhead-Deerlodge in MT, Dinosaur National Monument/Brown’s Park in Colorado, and one other location in Wyoming. All features are straightforward and read like a map. My solve location has never been posted before. I have two places to look either 200 to 500 feet from the trail which could differ based on your interpretation of quickly down and a third to check on the way out if drawing lines based on the poem instructions to make an x. If I don’t find it I’m not going back. I see a lot of mental gymnastics to try to make a solve work when it has failed. As Forrest has stated don’t overcook my poem. I will be spending 6 days in the backcountry to see sights while I’m there because I’m not driving all that way for nothing. Find it or not I’m posting my “solved when I return and then moving on. If I don’t find it it’s not there.

          • EricD

            You say, “and a third to check on the way out if drawing lines based on the poem instructions to make an x. ”

            Forrest once said, “I am new to the treasure search and there is so much contradictory information on the blogs I don’t know what to believe and what I shouldn’t. It must be just as confusing for you to read. Can you tell me anything that will help me? Thank you Mister Fenn. Adell
            PS, I am a city girl.

            I will try Adell.
            Read the blogs for entertainment, and the poem like you were going to put an X on a map. Beyond that I am not compelled to reiterate. Hunt prepared and go safely. Good luck.” f

            “Read the poem LIKE you were going to put an X on a map.” I do NOT read this as saying that the poem will lead you to making an “X” as you go from point to point. If this is how you are interpreting the clues, I hope you have a great vacation,. – JMO – JDA

          • JDA,

            My daughter tells me that Dora the Explorer’s treasure map always has an X.
            Look 4 the X, find the treasure.

            Her X is even on the ground when finding the treasure.

          • Look4thex

            I agree most treasure maps do have an “X” – but the “X” is what you seek – not the path that you must follow to get to that “X” – Just a thought – JDA

          • I will also note that X just happens to have a feature that looks like an omega symbol from satellite and its closer to the road. Hopefully it pans out.

    • Swwot Hi I have confidence in my solve front to back besides tired of playing cards when you know you go in right to TC no guessing there is know outher place it can be you go with confidence .mermerize poem read books and think.

  73. tighterfocus,
    I think that the tighter focus we need is hinted at in the statement about stepping on one foot to go to the next one. I think the layers are stacked like a sandwich. IMO

  74. Here is something to think about!

    I was just randomly looking something up when I came upon a word that sounds like “clue” but is spelled differently. Has anyone ever heard of this word before? I’m sure lugnutz has because he has made it clear that the whole world knows all the meanings to words.

    Well, this one was new to me and I found it to be quite interesting.
    (n.) “ball of thread or yarn,” northern English and Scottish relic of Old English cliewen “sphere, ball, skein, ball of thread or yarn,” probably from West Germanic *kleuwin (source also of Old Saxon cleuwin, Dutch kluwen), from Proto-Germanic *kliwjo-, perhaps from a PIE *gleu- “gather into a mass, conglomerate,” from the source of clay (q.v.). For further sense evolution, see clue (n.).

    Well, that certainly caught my attention! Sounds like that ball of string when FF talked about collecting string as a boy and making it into a huge ball.

    Also sounds like gathering rocks into a mass or conglomerate. The source of the word is “clay”. I know FF’s father “molded” young people’s lives.

    I just find this very entertaining and interesting! I’m going to give this some thought.

    • Flutterby – we have indeed looked for clews regarding the great Fenn family mystery. But to the best of my knowledge, we didn’t come to any conclusions and I think lots of people are still trying to solve that puzzle. Regarding stepping on one foot to get to the next, I wonder if perhaps FF was referring to the literary device used in poetry; the “foot”. He has inserted many references to feet in his stories and in a doctored photo/drawing or 2 – certainly makes one curious. Maybe we are looking for a clew foot bathtub.

      • Nice observation Sandy. Being a poem it makes sense to pay attention to rhyme , meter and cadence. This helps to embrace the ambiguity in the attempt to form an image or emotion….

      • Hi Sandy: largest ball of string is in Texas. Largest ball of yarn is in Montana. Hmmm. 😉

        • Zap…So that’s where your secret search location is!! I’m going to fire up the truck right now and go check it out!

    • Flutter –

      I will credit Lisa as one person who has looked at clew and the BoS

      Ariadne and Theseus
      Ariadne’s thread
      The Thrill of the Chase

      If the ball is too large to roll through the doorway
      The thread is pulled from Forrest’ bedroom.

      • Lugnutz,
        “If the ball is too large to roll through the doorway
        The thread is pulled from Forrest’ bedroom” Maybe. Or maybe it was unraveled one clue at a time. IMO Either way; the clues are literally touching one another in my opinion. Its in the rock formation. IMO

      • Hey Lug,

        True, that seems to b what happened to the ball. However, how does that relate to the chase. Do you see a hint there?


        Windy City

        PS: I am from the NW side.

        • Hey Lug,

          Not being critically in any way. Just wondering what you may be seeing regarding the ball. I have almost been stumped by that. Just curious if you see it as a hint or not?

          Godspeed, Windy City

          • Windy City –

            Ariadne’s Thread.
            Ariadne provided the thread to Theseus in the Minotaur’s Labyrinth.

            Ariadne’s Thread is a reference to solving a maze or logic puzzle.

            Fenn asks us questions, you, me, the “reader”. When he does, I try to answer the question. His question is Ho did the ball of string get out of the bedroom since it was too large to fit through the door. The answer is Pull the thread. So, perhaps Fenn is hinting at the complexity of the puzzle and the manner by which it is solved. Ariadne’s Thread compels us to look for multiple ways to solve.

            This is what I think about when I try to solve the mystery of how a ball of string is removed from a room when it is too large to fit through the doorway.

            I work downtown
            I live int he SW burbs

  75. For anyone and everyone:

    In regards to your current search/solve area – do you know if people have already searched for the blaze there? And if they have, does it matter or stop you from going?

    I know people have been in my area so I have to wonder, curious what others think. Does it encourage or discourage you from that place?

    FYI, getting ready for my first official chase lol

    • Phelix;

      Forrest has said that people have been within 500′ and 200′ of Indulgence. This being said, I would be foolish to think that I was the only one who had figured out that “my” place was the right place. I would be more worried if I knew that I was the only one who had ever searched “my” area.

      I know of three or four people (at least) who have searched “my” area – they may have been distracted by what they thought was the blaze, when in fact it was something quite different – JMO – JDA

    • If FF said the people he knows went through the chest, I’d find out where the “veterans” were before 2013.

      The more veteran the better, because veterans often complicate the research, and that’s good for us, newbies, who us have taken the already tested and obviously wrong recipes.

      That is why FF says that “new eyes” can provoke new thoughts.

      I would not look where few people go, or no one passes by.

      The best place to hide something is in everyone’s sight.

      People will be surprised, FF said.

      IMO of course.

  76. Colokid on June 7, 2018 at 8:25 am said:

    Something Ken said triggered some thoughts that I believe don’t get discussed enough. The idea is, why is it that we absolutely have to have clue 1 before we can get anywhere else with the poem? What keeps us from solving clues in the middle without first having solved clue 1? Why are there no shortcuts? Think about it….we don’t have any better information about WWWH then any of the other clues so what’s stopping us from figuring out the others the same way we figure out clue 1?

    Let’s look at the standard model for solving the poem. 1) Guess a WWWH and find it on the map, 2) now look at the map and convince yourself that surrounding features line up with succeeding clues. (‘Hey if I follow this nearby canyon for 10 miles I come to Browns Mt…..this is just too coincidental…this has to be the solve!!’)

    The presumption seems to be that once you know “where” WWH is (on a map) then that is what “identifies” all the other clues. 100% failure rate. Granted, the unknown location of #1 could be what insulates us from moving forward in the poem but it’s not very robust and F seems sure we can’t go anywhere without #1. Is it just the multitude of possible WWH’s that’s holding us back or is there something different about 1 that we need to discover?

    But wait: people have been to the first 1-2 clues. They were at the ‘unknown location’ and still we have 100% failure rate. How can the ‘unknown location’ of #1 be the firewall that prevents solving the subsequent clues? How can you be there at the start and still go astray…..(now I’m starting to sound like Seeker). Ha

    Does figuring out 1 provide some other information (besides location) that augments unlocking the others? We’re missing something guys. There seems to be something very different with 1-2 that prevents us from proceeding. It may be that no one will be successful until they figure out this disconnect/firewall.


    I dragged this to a new thread so that others could respond and follow – hope it works.

    My opinion is, that those who wandered by the first two clues got there by accident. What I mean is this, they went there intentionally, looking for Indulgence – so that part’s not accidental. What is accidental is the fact (it seems) that they did not go to the first clue or two clues, with critical knowledge they needed. It is still my opinion that cracking the code/solving the riddle correctly gives up the starting spot/first clue and much more. Something along the lines of how to think or what else to look for – a perspective or way of looking at things on locale. If you don’t solve the “Fenn Equation”, you are not walking in the wood with confidence.

    All that to say, I agree with your observations.

    • Attention: Everything below is mere speculation.

      If researchers were on the first 2 clues, and they “no knew”, this suggests that something in the poem drew their attention to the location.

      By the way the poem was written I have an idea of what it is.

      But since I know that I will be totally, absolutely, indiscriminately, criticized, I will let WyMustIGo worry about it. Grammar is with him.

      One sentence led, and still leads many researchers there.

      IMO, JMO = Had a researcher who almost turned the place inside out, swam at the side of the blaze, and if I’m right, he still killed his thirst a few feet from the chest.

      Attention: All above is mere speculation.

      • McB,

        So you found someone to scope out your hidey spot, eh? Sorry that he only got to slake his thirst and not find Indulgence. Hopefully, he will be able to rectify that soon, for your sake – and his.

        Good luck and safe journeys,

    • Swwot;

      You say, “1) Guess a WWWH and find it on the map, 2) now look at the map and convince yourself that surrounding features line up with succeeding clues. (‘Hey if I follow this nearby canyon for 10 miles I come to Browns Mt…..this is just too coincidental…this has to be the solve!!’)”

      For you, and possibly for many searchers, this MAY be the way to start. I most heartily disagree. GUESSING at wwwh will almost certainly result in failure. There are just too many wwwh in the Rocky Mountains.

      One must be much more selective than a GUESS. Some say that the answer is in stanza #1 – this narrows down the search. I say that it is in stanza #6 “in the wood”. Who knows who is correct? But the point is SOMETHING in the poem HAS to direct the searcher to the correct wwwh, or it is just a dart throwing game and as you say, a GUESSING game – and I am quite sure Forrest did NOT design a game that could only be won by a lucky guess.

      Please give your fellow searchers a bit more credit – we are not just GUESSERS – most of us try to employ a bit of reasoning and logic. YOU may rely on GUESSING – that is your choice – JMO – JDA

      • JDA…swwot did not say that. READ the entire post starting at the very beginning of it.

        • Not sure I agree Ken. Swwot says, “Let’s look at the standard model for solving the poem. 1) Guess a WWWH and find it on the map,..” I read this as Swwot saying that the “standard model” is for searchers to “Guess a WWWH”

          All I am saying is that I think most searchers do more than guess. If I offended Swwot, or anyone else, I apologize – that is just how I read Swwot’s post – JMO – JDA

          • swwot was repeating what Colokid posted upstream…
            swwot’s response starts halfway down his post beginning with…. Colokid,

          • JDA, I agree with Ken that Swwot tells us that he copied and pasted Colokid’s post from another thread which includes the lines that you are referring to.

            Afterwards, Swwot gives us their opinion about it.

          • Thanks Ken – Some times I am blind to the obvious. Thanks for correcting me – and my apologies Swwot for “blaming” you for something that Colokid said. I apologize. – So, I guess I need to direct my post to Colokid – consider it done – JDA

          • JD,
            LOL. If it would make you feel better we can replace the word “guess” with either “choose” or “pick” and the meaning would still be the same.

            Instead of being unnecessarily indignant, I would challenge you to go back to the original conversation and try to understand the question that was posed in that conversation with Ken and Seeker. Focus on the first paragraph.

          • Fair enough Colokid.

            Here is what started it all:

            Colokid on June 7, 2018 at 8:25 am said:

            Something Ken said triggered some thoughts that I believe don’t get discussed enough. The idea is, why is it that we absolutely have to have clue 1 before we can get anywhere else with the poem?”

            Other than the fact that Forrest tells us not to start in the middle – nothing really. One can jump to the middle chapter of a mystery novel, and start reading there – That is a personal choice. The reader will be robbed of much of the plot and insight into the characters, but so what? It savers time. Same for jumping to the middle of the poem and trying to solve it from there – I think you will miss valuable information needed later – JMO.

            ” What keeps us from solving clues in the middle without first having solved clue 1?” See above.

            “Why are there no shortcuts?

            There MAY be shortcuts, but if by taking a shortcut you miss a needed marker – like a needed road sign if you are taking a road trip, was taking the shortcut worth it? Not in my way of thinking.

            “Think about it….we don’t have any better information about WWWH then any of the other clues so what’s stopping us from figuring out the others the same way we figure out clue 1?”

            I disagree. I think that the poem DOES give us “better information about wwwh then (sic) any of the other clues.” With this additional information, we CAN determine the correct wwwh location, and thus start our quest down the correct canyon, that will lead to the correct put in point below hoB etc.

            Hope that this answers your question. NO – I am NOT going to tell you what the additional information is other than what I have said for months – Find out the hidden meaning o f” the wood” and you can find the correct wwwh – JMO -JDA

          • JD,
            Well no that doesn’t really answer the question because it appears you don’t buy into the central premise as supported by a multitude of ATF’s. But you are correct…if a seacher chooses to ignore F’s advise they can jump in and approach the poem anyway they want. Just thins out the competition IMO.

            Don’t worry….I have no interest in your secret ‘in the wood’ theory. But I have to ask, with all due respect, how many times are you going to beat your head against this same solution before you consider that it might have a few flaws? You said the count is 17 right? Head not sore yet?

            Anyway, thanks for trying and good luck with your thought process.

          • Haaaa!
            You heard bang bang… I heard tiiinngg tiinnggg.

            Leave the solving attempt out of the idea. Look at the ATFs as a guide rather than answering anything.

            Example; There are many wwwh in the RM’s and nearly all are N. of SF.
            Don’t attempt to find wwwh… look at the ATF has to what it says… “nearly all” So, if you have a wwwh that is only represented by something only found N.of SF… your guess is most likely wrong.
            No need to use this comment or related comment to figure out what a clue is… it’s all about how the ATF can keep the readers of the poem from going haywire on a thought, keep digging at it, never changing it because they ‘personally’ like it.

            I used this comment before as an example; fenn said; ” I’m not ready to say the chest is not in water…”
            Many blew right over this because fenn was explaining how he sealed the olive jar… Later, and almost force to… fenn came out with the chest is “not under water.”

            So ya’ll have heard me repeat that comment before, right? Ok ~ have you thought why fenn may have stated “under water” rather than ‘IN water’?

            Who has a thought/ theory the chest is ‘behind’ a waterfall?
            I know I would think twice about what ‘Under’ may refer to. Cuz no matter how you look at a waterfall… being behind the water is no different that being under the fall of the water…and the same for submerged in water.

            Just saying…

  77. Searchers…Frank asked me to pass on the good news that his CT scan is clear and he is a SURVIVOR! He thanks you for your prayers and well wishes and will back to HOD when he returns home.

    • YEA – YEA. GOOD NEWS!!! Yea for modern science. Sorry that the treatment was so painful, but glad of the result. Frank, you will be out there on the trails soon I am sure. YEA – YEA – YEA – JDA

    • Someone else mentioned this practice at many oncology hospitals — I hope Frank gets to ‘ring the bell’. The resulting cheer from all within earshot is very uplifting to the human spirit!

    • So very glad to hear this news, Sandy. Please pass along warm wishes to Frank. (I know he’ll eventually read the blog also.)

      In the past 9 or 10 months, I have lost two dear friends to cancer. One gal battled breast cancer for over 13 years and the other gal had pancreatic cancer and only survived 8 months. The memorial service for the gal with breast cancer is coming up soon.

  78. I’m very, very happy to hear the good news for Frank. I hope he stays healthy from here on out and enjoys life as it should be. 🙂

  79. ken on June 7, 2018 at 11:41 am said:

    “Guys…It’s all good. My opinion is that the entire poem needs to be solved to even begin to look for the treasure. Without the first clue as the reference/starting point…I believe that a sure failure will occur…that is a given, as Fenn has said umpteen million times. The remaining clues I believe are really not all that complicated once the *riddle* has been figured out. I believe the answer to the *riddle* derived from the clues directs the searcher to the location where a BOTG searcher will find the blaze. And Seeker…I do not believe the clues are all AT wwwh to be seen or observed from a *take it in* vantage point or anything along those lines. Call it what you will…that’s just my abs talking…and I’ll adhere strictly to that one. I tried that end-around hiding right at the beginning in Snake school…they busted my butt in about two hours. Think about the scenario where Fenn would have used the poem to hide his treasure, then die with it. I don’t believe he would have parked his car at wwwh or anywhere near it. Anyways…it is all in the riddle…for all to see, and I believe someone will eventually figure it out.”

    What Ken said above.

    I’m in Ken’s camp – or is he in mine? At any rate, we are thinking along the same lines with only minor differences, most of which I would wager (if I were a betting man) would work themselves out as time and the solution unfolds before us.

    Now, where did I put my Quisp secret decoder ring?

    • Swwot or Ken –

      I would enjoy hearing about a starting point that can’t be seen from the blaze AND also has only “one way” in or out between them.

      Because I can guarantee that most of the time when folks are driving from one place to anther there are additional ways to make it.

      I can go with McB’s version where each clue shrinks the diameter of a ring like in a bullseye. If something large (a state, a forest) is where warmwaters halt you won’t leave it, just get more refined. I just don’t see how WWWH can be, say 10 miles from HoB and there be only one way.


      • Lugnutz,

        Answering for myself only…

        1. For me, I am of the opinion that the starting point is where you park your vehicle. (This may or may not be wwwh.) Once you are at wwwh, you then walk less than a few miles, solving the clues along the way, to where Indulgence is secreted away. I think this explanation makes it self-evident that they cannot be “near” enough to one another to both be seen at the same time. (Except from high over-head.)

        2. For now, for me, once you get out of your vehicle to start at wwwh, you do not get back in your vehicle to drive anywhere further. (Yes, you must use your imagination to get past the line in the poem referencing “too far to walk”.)

        3. Once Indulgence is discovered by a searcher, there will be 360 degrees of directions to leave. If, however, you want to find Indulgence, there is only one way there – unlock the “Fenn Equation”.

        I think I have satisfactorily answered your questions,

      • Lugnuts…your scenario does not fit my train of thought in the least. Do not try to read between the lines or try to *guarantee* anything until the treasure is retrieved by someone and that confirms something you believe. McB has some great insight on seeing through the puzzle and I admire his willingness to participate. I will say…taking any kind of distance completely out of the picture…I think if a serious searcher wants to find the treasure…there is only one way.

        • Has anyone ever thought from WWWH to Blaze, the poem may be describing a single location?

          That the last stanza “should” give the precision necessary for the researcher to go “straight” to the chest?

          That if you are in the right place you will “understand” what is “wood”?

          That at solve the poem, should you “really” be surprised by your solution?

          • * * * * McB queried – “Has anyone ever thought from WWWH to Blaze, the poem may be describing a single location?” * * * *

            Sure, McB. I’m already in tight focus with the “small area” view of the whole Chase Map, and this is the ultimate minimalist reductio of that idea. Would almost make the map a landscape painting.

            It would definitely qualify for the (surprisingly un-analyzed) “one important possibility related to the winning solve.”

            And it would fit neatly with this statement (when read with the indicated emphasis added) – “I would advise new searchers to look for the clues in my poem and try to marry them to A PLACE on a map.”

            Not to claim that this interpretation trumps the reading where each-clue-own-location, but I do agree that all-clues-one-location is very plausible.

            (See also “. . . if you knew the geographic location of each clue it would be a map to the treasure.”)


        • Well Ken –

          Maybe someday you will tell me all about it.

          In the meantime can you just tell me hypothetically how the starting point and the second/third point can be some distance apart, and yet maintain the “only one way” scenario.

          Maybe you can help me see that.


          • Lug;

            I am not Ken, but I will give it a try.

            Point “A” = wwwh
            Point “B” = hoB
            Line between “A” and “B” = Canyon Down
            Point “C” is directly above Point “B”
            Point “C” = the “END” point where you park or where you rest from a long hike.
            Line between “B” and “C” = hoB to meek -end.
            This is the only road or trail between “B” and “C” – Only way I know of – dead end road or trail.

            Park or stop – continue on new smaller trail to HL & WH – blaze and Indulgence.

            This describes an “Only one way” path. Doesn’t it? Just a possibility – JDA

          • Lugnuts…I’m not sure who has the bad communication skills here…I did not say anything about distance(other than taking it off the table completely). My comment is/was to you…I think if a serious searcher wants to find the treasure…there is only one way.

    • Here’s a riddle; What’s new and old?

      And I’m really starting to get tick off ya’ll have decoder rings, magical hats, weemeemageemee mouse pads, and my magic eight ball only says; try later.

      • Seeker –

        I think he changes words to obscure them. Others won’t think that’s the case at all.

        Dold means hidden. So I just read his line and his rhyme as a away of saying hidden.

        He’s inviting you to find his treasure and hinting at how to solve clues.


        • He’s inviting you to find his treasure and hinting at how to solve clues.

          What exactly does that mean? hinting how to solve them…

          I for one don’t think new and old has anything to do with the treasure or the chest, so, IF the clues refer to new and old… time must be involved, yes?
          hence imagination? why he may have been thinking down the road? and to that, the opposite would be in the past? why geography might help?
          New [ future ] old [ past] leaving the present as it sits in any generation or era…

          This has been one of my approach to reading the poem.. the location is now or even far into the future, but told of the past… which can not change.
          Which brings me to one of my questions; what are the details on the right map?

  80. Lugnutz,
    You asked about my definition of the word “but”. IMO this word is essential to the poem. It actually confirms four DIFFERENT things about the poem. Two of them, I am not going to mention because it would just give too much away. However, I will mention two meanings that I think are significant.

    Butt= “any of various units of liquid capacity” (Merriam-Webster) Various dictionaries define this meaning slightly differently. It basically comes down to Butt being a container for water. It was supposed to be a specific legal measurement, but there are so many variations of it that it can’t be relied upon for a specific measure.

    “But tarry scant” fits with my belief that we are looking at the record of where/wear water has been. It has left behind the story in stone of the Rocky Mountains. It “tarried scant” or in other words, it was there once, but it not there now in the same quantity. It is the record the water left for us that we are looking for.

    Somehow the other day, my mind recalled a statement in the story of Looking for Lewis and Clark. I had to go look it up to see exactly what it said. P 62 TTOTC In speaking of Donnie Joe, FF said, “He insinuated that I couldn’t find my butt with both hands and all the lights on. Now the lights on is a whole other discussion that ties to bathing outdoors, having a shower with a skylight, and a few other things FF has talked about.

    It wasn’t until that point in the story that Donnie Joe and FF turned back and loosened their grip on the reins and let the horses lead them to a dirt road, that they actually made it home.

    To me, this entire scenario in the story is a metaphor for what people are doing in search of the TC. They have this tight grip on the reins/rains (place where water is). Once they loosen up their tight grip and start to use their imagination a bit to understand that there are places where water is that we might not see it, or where it has been that we have not gone, then their is some chance of solving the poem. We have to loosen our grip on the “reins”/rains. We have to look at a place where water was or where it still is but not in such a visible way.

    The rock layers all contain water. Some are more porous than others. The crust layers or the craton layers have such little porosity that water is “halt”/lame getting through those layers.

    Another definition of butt that fits my solve is this. Butt=lie adjacent to another or share a boundary. (Merriam-Webster) Think Borders bookstore. Think rock layers that lie adjacent to one another. They share a boundary. They border one another. You have to think more deeply about this definition.

    As I said before, I can’t even share the other two meanings that simultaneously apply to the poem. I think they give too much away.

    Good luck. I think whoever can find the “butt with two hands and the lights on” will be holding the TC.


    • Good Thinkin’ Flutterb y. Words, and meanings of words will be the key that unlocks the riddles – I am sure – YEA for your efforts – Thanks for sharing – JDA

    • Flutterby…trying to follow your train of thought…do you believe an area that was once a warm inland sea would fit your “butt” definition? And the record it leaves could be plant/fish/animal fossils? Very interesting…but how do narrow our focus from big picture to the blaze? Thanks for sharing your ideas.

      • Sandy,
        You asked, “do you believe an area that was once a warm inland sea would fit your “butt” definition”

        My definition of a butt is a geographic feature of exposed rock with varying layers of rock representing different periods of time (too far to walk) in the history of RM. The “butt” contains little water now but once did and left behind a record in stone. No rock is zero percent permiable so there is a scant amount of water that could penetrate the rock, but not much and it woudn’t flow through the rock very well. The water would be “halted” or “lame” as it travels through or tries to travel through the rock.

        IMO of course

        • Flutterby,
          Halt’s meaning can be lame. So I can’t argue your thought on that.

          However, If we take fenn seriously when he said he was not trying to fool or play games with anyone when he wrote the poem, and that included; misspelling words and punctuation usage… Doesn’t BUT to BUTT change the entire meaning/usage of the word fenn wrote-?- and wouldn’t it be a deliberate act on his part to ‘fool’ the reader by not using the correct word?

          I mean, why couldn’t I change one of the ‘and’ to ‘sand’
          Or spell ‘weak’ as ‘week’ to produce a clue that fits better in my personal theory /solve.
          I think, this change / changing a word, even by a single letter [ because it sounds the same ] can take a good thought process and sink it into the deep abyss.

          The again, I always get read and read screwed up…

          • Seeker,

            “hear me all”

            IMO it is the sounds of the words that matter and not the spelling. The hint for that in my opinion is that FF said “If I had to look up a word, I just wouldn’t use it” (TTOTC p 14. Basically we know that this statement isn’t really true because in other statements he says he looked up meanings of words. So I think what he is really trying to say with this statement, “if I had to look up a word, I just woudn’t use it”, is that he may have just spelled words as they sounded. That is my opinion, but it is a pretty strong one.

          • Covert One,
            Donnie Joe may have thought that FF couldn’t find his butt with both hands and the lights on, but I think we are supposed to be able to find the Butt.

    • Flutterby, another etymology def under butt is butte: a “conspicuous elevation,” especially a steep-sided one notable in its isolation, 1805, American English, from French butte, from Old French but “mound, knoll; target to shoot at” (see butt (n.3)). A relic of the French exploration of the upper Missouri region, introduced in English in Lewis & Clark’s journals.

      • OS2,

        Yes, I am familiar with a butte. But while the spelling is similar, the sound is not the same as but or butt. I believe the sound of the words is important. Also; FF made a comment left me questioning a butte.

        “Doesn’t have any downsides I think. Everybody wins if you go out looking for it.”

        I think the fact that there are no “downsides” is important. But, we will have to see.

  81. The link works when I click it.

    If you go to youtube the channel is called A Gypsy’s Kiss
    The title of the episode is: Forrest Fenn’s Treasure: Home of Brown Revealed

    I went to youtube and typed gypsys kiss home of brown

    • Well shucks those two already found the hoB?
      And they solved the first 5 clues too!
      I must say that is a marvel.

    • Lugnutz,
      The link didn’t open on my phone. But, it did on my laptop. Just watched the clip now.

      I agree with a number of things stated about the HOB in this clip, but I disagree with a few things also. I do believe HOB is a geographic or geologic “thing” (for lack of a better word). I do not believe it is Brown. I do not believe it is a place named Brown or named after a person living or dead who was named Brown. So those are the things I agree with.

      I firmly disagree about any relationship at all with Eric Sloane. While I believe that Eric Sloane, being a friend of FF, may have inspired FF in some of his comments and descriptions, I think that is where the connection ends. If FF has quoted at times from Sloane or referred to Sloane, I think it is only the words FF himself says in the quote that matter to the solve. I don’t think we need to understand Sloane himself or his thoughts at all. In fact, FF has said that no special knowlege is required but that geography might help. So, learning about Sloane IMO is as much a waste of time as learning about Marvel comics (marvel gaze) or looking for people named “Brown”, or chasing down the upteen billion places WWWH without knowing the HOB.

      I have believed for quite a while that HOB is symbolically (not even sure that is the right word to use here) the place where “Brown” is created. I had a general idea based upon writings in TTOTC.

      I was intrigued by one quote that was used in this clip. Something about brown is the “neglected color between red and yellow”. “it is the color of autumn and I love it”. Those are two powerful statements IMO. In fact, I think both statements are a very good description of the geologic/geographic place where Brown is created.

      Having listened to these statements on the video clip, I was reminded of two different stories from TTOTC that clearly described HOB (as I understand it).

      I believe that the HOB exists in more than one specific spot, but that it is important to find it in the correct relationship with WWWH. So that is my challenge now.

      It is just my opinion, that anyone ignoring the rock formations is never going to find WWWH or HOB. What is needed is a look at the “tighter focus”. That doesn’t mean to focus in tighter. It means to look at the “tighter focus” of the “big picture”

      That Sloane quote by FF reminded me of a comment in the story, Gypsy Magic. I’m amazed that I finally figured out (IMO) what this whole story was trying to say. FF talks about watching the flames making shadows that seemed to move with the music. He laid on his stomach and watched them with his eyes and became a part of it. He said he always stayed “until the fire died down and the music stopped”. That is very metaphoric (is that a word?) So now I believe I understand what Gypsy Magic is telling us about HOB. And, just to clarify; I do not think it is about the campfire or the wagon wheel which I’ve heard discussed before. Ok. . . I guess there is a tiny hint with the wagon wheel but I doubt anyone is going to get it til they understand what the poem is talking about IMO.

      “it is the color of autumn and I love it” FF. It is the color of autumn but I don’t think FF is just talking about fall colors. I think he is talking about the autumn of life. This reminded me of death and of course the whole “sitting on a dead guys grave marker”. Of course IMO, FF is talking about sitting on a rock.

      My wandering mind went next to the story about “Blue Jeans and Hush Puppies”. Can I ask a rather morbid question about this story? FF talks about the painting he purchased of the man on a bridge holding a pistol, and the dead dog at his feet. Creepy! Seriously creepy! But, anyway; is it coincidence that FF describes the painting that way and that the title of this story is includes “Hush Puppies”. Was this an accident he didn’t realize or did he really mean to give this title to story about a dead dog, I’m not sure I want to know the answer to that question. Maybe I will pretend I didn’t ask it.

      But, as the story about Blue Jeans and Hush Puppies goes on, FF can’t sell this painting of the dog. Finally he “trades” it to a museum in exhcange for a small French watercolor. Now we are getting somewhere with the clues to HOB ! This is my opinion of course. This watercolor pictured a bunch of fairies dancing around a rock “if you can believe I’d come to that”. Curious as to whether anyone else can see the hint sitting right there in this story? Also curious as to whether anyone else noticed that it was a “French” watercolor that was significant. Was this just coincidence that FF had an experience in My War for Me in which he came upon a “French Soldiers Grave”? I doubt it.

      Well, all this is IMO. It makes perfect sense to me and hopefully a few people can understand what I’m saying so we can talk about it. I really think I’m getting somewhere in understanding HOB.

      • Ahhh Flutterby, I’m your Huckleberry. You are speaking very clear to me. I think we may be on the same page. If I could give you a bouquet of roses for your above performance I would send them today. Clap Clap Clap! Encore!

  82. Hi everyone just got back from Lubbock – everything came out ok for now
    I still have to go and get checked every two months – I still have a lot to recover from my burns but ill be ok – thanks to God and all of you for your support and your prayers – from my family and I we thank you with all our hearts – we will remember you all for the rest of our lives – thank you and thanks to dal for letting me say this on his blog thank you – I will come back now and then to the hunt

    • YEA – YEA Frank. I am SOOOOOO glad that it has worked out well so far. Take a break buddy – you have been through a lot – not only physically, but mentally as well. Take time to “Smell the roses” my friend – you deserve it! JDA

    • Frank, such good news! Ok now, giddy up, get back out on the trails when you feel up to it!

    • outSTANDing, frank!

      Stay cool and enjoy all the natural summer light, day and night.


    • Frank,
      Great news ! I knew that today would be a great day for you… I never doubted the power of prayer… enjoy your time with family and most importantly, enjoy the little things as you go about it…..
      Maybe someday we’ll meet on the trail my friend…. until next time… see ya

    • Frank,

      It’s nice to hear some great news for a change.

      Good luck to you and your family.

      Ronnie the Scot

  83. Why worry about any distance from the beginning to the end of the poem? I think it all will be obvious when one finds the TC. This is on the line of F’s comment that, from the blaze to the TC will be obvious. [ gist of his comment]

    I believe there have been searchers beyond the hoB but, could not find the blaze because they are looking for the obvious and not being * wise *, meaning I believe they are not thinking through, which has nothing to do with imagination. I believe imagination helps to find wwh and the rest is using logic.

    I also firmly believe the poem can be solved from home right down to where the TC is hidden. How else can one go right to it? As others, I believe went down a few rabbit holes so to speak while moving through trying to solving the poem and have been close, but did not know it and walked right on by, I myself has done the very same thing many times.

    Now as far as the few words in the poem that will not help find the TC as I believe F has said is the entire 1st stanza & the 5th stanza. I will not debate what * a few * is as we all have different opinions on few. This also applies to NFBTFTW, which has been beat to death over the years.

    What I also would like to say is this is JMHO. I can’t debate my findings as it too sensitive for my soon botg next week. When I return I will share my solve. This also will be my final search and the end of trying to solve the poem if I fail. About my *confidence* it is very high.

    I’ll just follow the blog until I leave.
    The best to all of you in your searches, after all this is quite the Chase!! 🙂


    • CharlieM;

      Good luck to you sir. Hope you find that which you seek. If you are not successful – we are even. If successful – hope you enjoy the BIG bottle of brandy 🙂 A toast to you sir – JDA

    • Charlie M, ~ ‘Why worry about any distance from the beginning to the end of the poem?’

      Well we have; Not far.. we also have Too Far To Walk, regardless of whether that is a physical distance or a time or any other cockamamie idea we can come up with, there seems to be and indication of distance to understand.
      We also have “below” well, how far below? Or “from there it’s no place…” how far is that from “there”? Then we have that pesky creek… do we paddle down? float? cross? hike along side and how far is that? How far is the end? How far away from the end is HLnWH?
      Seems your relying on a lot of obvious… And apparently all those before you, cuz they passed everything.

      If distance is not to be considered beforehand [whether long or short] How can you even look at a map, nevertheless navigate the poem on site?

      Why worry about distances? It’s not about worrying, it’s about solving!

      Anyways, I’m looking forwards to reading your theory when you get back. You should get a head start and begin typing it up now… later, fill in the adventure and scenery parts when you get back. And watch out for bees or anyone on a bicycle…

      • Seeker,
        You said, “We also have “below” well, how far below?

        I love this source! https://www.etymonline.com/word/below
        Defines Below as,
        “”in a lower position,” early 14c., biloogh, from be- “by, about” + logh, lou, lowe “low” (see low (adj.)). Apparently a variant of earlier a-lowe (influenced by other adverbs in be-; see before), the parallel form to an-high (now on high).”

        “Beneath was the usual word; below was very rare in Middle English and gained currency only in 16c. It is frequent in Shakespeare. As a preposition from 1570s. In nautical use, “off-duty,” in contradistinction to “on deck.” Meaning “inferior in rank or dignity” is from c. 1600. According to Fowler, below is the opposite of above and concerns difference of level and suggests comparison of independent things. Under is the opposite of over and is concerned with superposition and subjection and suggests some interrelation.”

    • CharlieM,
      I did not give any thought as to the distance between the clues in the poem. I relied upon the poem to tell me what I needed to know. As I understand the poem, it is telling me that the clues are stacked on top of one another. IMO

      Good luck next week!

  84. Seeker on June 7, 2018 at 1:29 pm said: (To Ken)

    “So I see your point that we should figure out them prior, But even that doesn’t seem to connect the later clues… how hard is it to look at a map and say… Hmm this place and that place look like this clue and that clue, and not find it or get to it in the field.

    Ok I just reread my last paragraph and i don’t even like the way it came out. so lets try this thought… If ya knew hoB you’d go right to the chest… LOL would that no work for any and all later clues as well [ is we just follow point to point ]? So if that is not possible… how can we figure them out at home and still walk right by them all? I may have to by stock in contact lenses, cuz everyone is blind. lol

    You keep saying riddle… I keep saying Fixed location… they can be one in the same. It all depends on how you read the plain english wording in the poem.”

    Seeker, may I have this dance? 🙂

    Seriously now, I am not speaking for Ken, he’s a big boy and can take care of himself. I would like to chime in and say this – I have shared before on this site that it is my opinion that the successful searcher will use the poem at least twice to pick up Indulgence, in the same solution. Once to solve “the big picture” to get the starting spot and to get in the right frame of mind, and a second time to be guided to the hidey spot once in the correct area. I don’t know this for certain, but as I have hammered and tonged on my anvil, it is seeming more so as I engage fellow searchers.

    I am also on record for saying things like it is my opinion that not all the clues refer to spots on a map, which is a hard pill for some folks to swallow. It is my opinion that some of the clues are ethereal, they do not exist in the physical universe, but only in our mind’s eye. A simple example is, show me a piece of North. North is “real” but you cannot touch it.

    Lastly, and I’ll be quiet until tomorrow, as I have some other things to attend to this evening, it is also my opinion that the clues are interwoven somehow – not only that they show us directions to the chest, but that they show us something of Mr. Fenn himself – something he wants to go down in history for – perhaps more importantly than the architect of a really good search. There’s a message we dare not miss, because if we do, we don’t find Indulgence.

    Next dancing partner please…

    • Swwot,
      You have a lot of opinions… sounds like another who name starts with Se something something…
      I’m diggin the idea of a big picture knowledge before the deciphered clues solution. It might just be that important possibility fenn was taking about. It might also be, the way to figure out WWH out of the many.
      I agree all the clues can’t be “spots” and you gave a great example of how a clue should be understood and not guessed.

      You said; {in part} ~’…they show us something of Mr. Fenn himself – something he wants to go down in history….’
      There’s something I would like to hear your thoughts on, but I can understand if you can’t elaborate. Just whisper, no one listens to the whispering anyways.

      Thanks for the dance, but next time, don’t be so dang cheap and by me a drink… Oh! and my eyes are up here!!. or were you just counting your steps? I know I have to… 1 2 3 4 ~ repeat.
      The box step is a