Watching Phillystone……


BY FORREST and Kieran


Kieran is about to embark on a great adventure. He’s going to be posting updates on his Instagram (@k.w.shields) as he travels and he’d love it if other treasure hunters could follow him and maybe even meet some of them along the way. Here’s an email I received from him. Good luck Kieran, and please stay safe on the road and in the mountains. f

Hello Forrest!

My name is Kieran Shields and I’ve solved your riddle. I’m sure you know where you hid your own treasure so I won’t bother trying to explain your own clues to you but your poem was so beautifully crafted! I’m 19 and I’m from just outside Philadelphia Pennsylvania; I don’t have a car so my friend and I are setting out on an adventure to ride our bikes from Philly to Yellowstone to retrieve the treasure. Right now we’re trying to get some supplies together so our bikes don’t fall apart while we’re rushing to the park but we would love to meet you in Yellowstone and go to the treasure with you! If you can’t make it we’re planning on retrieving the treasure and riding our bikes to Sante Fe to meet you. Even if I’m wrong about the treasures location I want to thank you for inspiring me to go on this crazy adventure!!

Thanks for being an adventurer, Kieran.

62 thoughts on “Watching Phillystone……

    • This reminds me Of Forrest AND Donnie looking for Lewis and Clark story stay safe travel well dont run if you meet the big brown griz ill check this week end to see if your in Wyoming yet being safe is most important so Forrest said don’t go where a 79 or 80 year old man couldn’t carry a 42 pound box of treasure as excited as you must be remember its in a safe place have fun guys. don’t know how im going to find wifi out in nowhere but ill try

    • sorry but i dont think this will be that simple i think its going to be like pulling a root out of the garden of time itself to find the true path alltho its written and right in front of us, for all to see i wish you well please travel safe and keep us posted on your journey

  1. What a way to explore! I imagine there is much to be seen between the start and end point. I hope we get updates on his adventures with pictures!

    • Plenty of bike mentions lately and does the story picture hint to a location that has transformed or been developed?

  2. How exciting. Please be safe. I belong to the bike association. Passing some notes to you from the club. Be safe and have a great ride.

    Dear Tracy,

    I’m reaching out to you because you purchased a Great Divide Mountain Bike Route map or data in the last year. I suspect you may be on the road now or soon. I wanted to make sure you were aware of some closures on the main GDMBR that will require you to use alternate routes to continue on your way.

    This is what we know as of July 6, 2018:

    GDMBR Section 2, Map A: A road 26 miles south of Helena is closed due hazardous tree mitigation. You must use the Boulder Alternate.

    GDMBR Section 3, Map A: A portion of FR 532, 46 miles east of Moran, is closed due to slumping. You must use the Wind River Alternate. Potentially Brooks Lake Rd., just east of Togwotee Pass, may be closed for the same reason requiring you to continue on US 26/287.

    GDMBR Section 5, Maps B & C: Extreme heat and lack of precipitation have led to high fire danger in the Santa Fe and Carson National Forests. At this time, they are closed. A detour is required. A shuttle is available to get around part of it.

    For more information on each of these situations, visit our Temporary ACA Route Road Closure Forum discussion at:

    All map sections: You may encounter smoky conditions throughout the summer anywhere on the route. At those times you may wish to reroute to avoid it from time to time. Road closures may also occur to accommodate emergency vehicles. You can view our interactive map showing the GDMBR and active fire locations together at:

    Have a great trip!

  3. It looks like Kieran must first cycle home to Philly from Panama..

    Have a great trip Kieran!

  4. Most (if not all) of us can recall the conviction we had on our first recovery trip. There is nothing like that adrenaline rush. It comes with a lifetime of memories.

    Thank you, Kieran, for sharing your adventure with us!

  5. Well….. we are heading back up to West Yellowstone tomorrow….. we go every summer for 7 weeks…. my 36th summer in a row …. can’t wait to see all the animals again…. get some good fishing in and of course poke around and follow up on some of my current thoughts of the chest location

  6. Thanks for the story. What a grand way to make an adventure! A story about a bicycle….

  7. .
    Looks like youre going to have a great adventure. Where does the 42 pound chest get stored on the way home? 🙂

    Fair weather, fare well

  8. That sounds like an awesome adventure Kieren. I hope you are safe and prepared and your friend too. On my adventures to Yellowstone, I have met a couple of people who have been seeing Yellowstone by hiking it. We have picked them up and talked with them on the trails. They are interesting people and determined. Best of luck to you and your friend. Can’t wait to hear your stories.

  9. Kieran- you are not wrong Yellowstone is one of the treasures.
    now go find that chest!

  10. Looks like the adventure of a life time. But I would hate to have to “bust out” on a solve and take 2 weeks to drive back home. I always want to get home and into the daily routine as quick as possible.

  11. This is great for you, I can’t believe u are actually going to travel by bike, what a interesting adventure. Have a very safe trip!!!

  12. There’ll be plenty of peddling to your creek.
    My hats off to ya.
    Good luck!

  13. I bet $10 that this post is Forrest’s response to the video “A Gypsy Kiss” released yesterday afternoon that was originally titled something like “It aint in Yellowstone Darn it!”

    Either Forrest disgrees with Toby, or he is messing with Toby 😉

    That is my 2 cents hehe

    PS: No offense to Kieran, I wish you luck, it could be there or anywhere else.

  14. It’s a once in a lifetime adventure, I just hope Kieran and friend will be safe and sound and cherish every moment of this great adventure. It seems a lot riskier going by bike, not easy to move away from fast dangerous animals while on bike and harsh exposure to the elements wont always be fun, so good luck.

    Yeah, I have no idea where the treasure is. As has been mentioned many times before it could be in many places in the FF designated area. It could be near Pikes Peak or near a thriving metropolis or in one of the most remote parts of the Great Divide. Who cares? It’s some of the most beautiful land in the world. I wish I had the means to explore it too, but like with Kieran and friend, I lack the means or youthful vigor. When I was young I wanted to travel with the counter culture, rainbow tribe they now call themselves to the Pine Ridge Reservation when the demonstrations were going on there in the Seventies, but I was too chicken to go it alone. A missed opportunity of a lifetime. But I did get a chance in May to explore some of the wilds of Arizona and the Superstition Mountains. Not too far to walk. I ideally want to see Weavers Needle, otherwise known as Witches Hat, But it’s 14 miles on foot. So, all I got to see was the tip of it. Best wishes to all who seek the Grail. Winks.

  15. Hey Kieran,

    I’m outside of Philly as well! I am routing for you! I hope you get it and take it home.. Stay safe and be very careful! Have some “wooder ice” after your adventures. Best of luck to you!

  16. Wow over 4,200 miles roundtrip! (not to mention from 39′ elevation to 8,000′ plus). I wouldn’t make it to Lancaster PA from Philadelphia by bicycle! My hats off to you. Good luck and be careful.

  17. Google maps tells me Philly to West Yellowstone (#assumptions) is 199 hours by bike. At 8 hours a day, that’s a bit under 25 days.

    It’s going to be a rough day in the middle of BF Nebraska if it’s found while he’s en route.

    • I bet it will take loner than 25 days.
      This is a pretty hot summer every where.
      Unless, he is a trained cyclist this is going to be a tough adventure.
      I wish him well and admire him his tenacity.

      Clearly Clueless.

  18. Me.Shields Sir–SAFE travels pack some bear spray–And for crap sakes- Don’t try to ride that thing backwards!!

  19. Have a great time and a safe trip!
    That looks like a comfortable seat…. I may have to get me one of those….

  20. I think Forrest has said he’s not leaving Peggy, so you’ll be heading to Santa Fe after you retrieve the chest. Personally, after three weeks in the saddle, I’d chunk the bike into the water high (ceremoniously; don’t want to pollute wilderness), then swap some gold nuggets for a Range Rover before heading south.

    • aardvarkbark- there is no retrieving the chest, only taking….camera wise.
      that’s what I read anyway.

      • Dodo bird; I Disagree. Definition of retrieve = get or bring (something) back; regain possession of.

        Finder will not be regaining possession of Indulgence, but will be “getting or bringing it back.” JMO – It certainly is my intention to “Get or bring Indulgence back” from where it has rested for eight years – JDA

        • JDA- I disagree too with you. the poem clearly states to TAKE the chest. nothing more. take a photo. my reading and comprehension skills are top notch.

          where are you seeing retrieve written by Forrest Fenn? I’m curious.

          I think.

          • dodo bird;

            Let me see if I understand your point. Forrest Fenn assembled a treasure over a period of years. He assembled this treasure with the intent of secreting it. His wrote a poem with nine clues in it that if precisely followed would lead the searcher to this secreted treasure. Am I correct so far? So, if a searcher is successful, they will then find the treasure, and TAKE A PICTURE OF IT AND LEAVE IT THERE! Is this what you are saying? Does this honestly seem realistic? Not in my mind dodo bird. Why have over 350,000 people become involved in this “Chase” – so that they can “Take a picture?” I think not – JMO – JDA

          • P.S. If you are lucky enough to solve the riddle – please let me know, and I will be more than happy to carry your camera for you when you take it’s picture. I will then shake your hand and thank you for the opportunity of going along with you for this picture taking opportunity – and I will then leave (Like heck I will) – JDA

          • JDA- no you are not correct so far. in TTOTC Forrest does not say that following the poem with nine clues will lead the searcher to “this secreted treasure” …your words not Forrest’s.
            read the book again JDA, slowly.

            TTOTC states “treasure and end of rainbow”
            poem in TTOTC says “chest” and “take” (a photo)
            three different things.
            not the first time Forrest’s words are confusing….EH?

            350,000 people have reading and comprehension deficit caused by gold fever.

            I think.

          • Well, dodo, I will not argue with you. You read the poem an the books and the ATF’s the way you want, and I and 350,000 others will read it our way. Who knows? You just might be right, and all of us might be wrong. Good luck with your search – JDA

          • “I hid the whole thing in one spot. But it took two trips to get to that spot with the weight of those…”
            “And when I took, when I hid the treasure chest, I had to make two trips because it weighs 42 pounds.”
            “The gold in the treasure chest weighs 20.2 troy pounds. And the treasure chest weighs forty, uh, twenty-two pounds. So the whole thing weighs around 42 pounds. It was heavy enough that I made two trips to hide it. I took the gold in one time, and then I took the treasure chest in the second time.”
            “…if you can find it, you can have it.”

          • I meant to type…”…if you can find the treasure chest, you can have it.”
            Also…..” My argument is that the person who finds it is gonna own it.”
            That may be a clever marketing device to generate funds for charities though….charge for up close photos of the found treasure.

          • Well dodo – at least you have convinced yourself that you are right.

            Seeker asked that you explain your way of thinking on this subject. I too would be interested in just how you have come to your conclusions – in a logical way – Thanks, in advance, for taking the time to explain to us
            how you have reached your conclusions – JDA

          • JDA- its on the thread entitled “A Fun, Safe Side Trip” by Dodo bird here on Dal’s blog.
            when I wrote that piece a year ago or so, I was heavily censored here at Dal’s. that’s why it is so vague. just recently I am not censored and am trying to explain fully.
            if you have any questions, ask me on the fun safe side trip thread.
            I did not see the request from seeker. but the same answer applies.

      • Dodo bird ~’…there is no retrieving the chest, only taking….camera wise.
        that’s what I read anyway.’

        So what happens in a hundred years when all today have past away or too old to search?
        Is the next generation only looking for a spot to take a picture of, with no prize, regardless of the words chest, contents etc?

        Why does fenn state; “If you can find the ‘treasure chest’ it won’t be a big job for you to ‘retrieve it’ ?

        What exactly are we supposed to take a picture of-?- and why?

        If you can read it that way [ as you said above ] can you give a rational explanation to what you’re implying…

        • hey Seeker, just saw your comment today.

          the poem seeker, read the poem.
          “just take (a photo) the chest (not the bronze box) and go in peace.”
          it says CHEST, not treasure chest.
          huge difference.
          I think.

  21. Congrats Forrest, nice banana, this should make the national media.

    Kieran: Wow, good luck. I am jealous, what a fun sounding adventure! Oh to be 19 again. I assume you have the fitness, planning, skills, etc. to pull this off….if yes, then I say why not…go for it and I wish you all the best. I know the feeling of having a solve that you feel good about and the need to go search ASAP…just make sure that your skillset and planning matches your ambition…and be safe. It is going to be really hot on your path to the West this summer. Keep us all posted! Dave

  22. Hi Kieran,

    I am an avid cyclist too having rediscovered the sport about 8-9 years ago to get the daily exercise this old body of mine needs to stay healthy, but I’m afraid I could not longer endure that kind of ride unless I broke it down into many 15 mile days.

    Anyway, I hope you have a blast and the weather cooperates in a very friendly way. But please keep a weary eye for those afternoon thunderstorms that can pop up anytime in the Midwest and RMs.

    Take care………Pinatubocharlie

  23. What an adventure!! You young men are an inspiration! Have fun and be safe on your travels!!

  24. Kieran,
    I can honestly say that 99.9% of our searcher community is envious and supportive at the same time…..wishing the best for you and your road teammate.
    It is refreshing to see people who chase their dreams.
    Godspeed, good luck, stay safe.

  25. Right on! I did a solo bike tour in 2005 that was roughly 700 miles much of it on Blue Ridge Parkway and Skyline Drive scenic highways. My favorite way to travel and I look back on as one of my most memorable adventures. My longest solo treasure trip was ten days in Yellowstone and area in 2016. That had a similar feel but a more constrained timeline and I was a little stressed as my solve evolved during the trip. The ability to move at the speed and range of a car may have had negative effects on my mind. The freedom to search at a bikers pace with a loose timeframe sounds ideal! I wonder if you will regret not putting your bike in a box and flying to Bozeman to start your adventure there. Starting from home on your own power is epic and a great story but it will likely take you 40 days to get to Yellowstone…. or exchange the cost of your bodies fuel for a small share of a tank of jet fuel and arrive in a 1/2 day! Something to consider. Either way you won’t regret it!

  26. Good luck to you Kieran and to your compadre. Your adventure is awesome and shall be historic. Take care of yourselves out there and have a blaze of a time!! I hope you find it, I am sure you will.

  27. When I last crossed the CD going through Eisenhower tunnel I saw many struggling up both sides. I admire their pluck. Enjoy the trip.

  28. Good luck and fair winds Kieran! That’s an epic ride you’re planning, and although I may half hope otherwise, I actually kinda half hope the treasure is where you hope the treasure is. It would sure be something to travel that far in that way to take it out. Keep us all posted on your travels and stay safe!

  29. May the road rise to meet you,
    may the wind be ever at your back.

    Safe trip, and if your travels take you through the south part of Ohio, let me know and I’ll buy you dinner!

    • live life,
      Thanks for the link.
      I am not familiar with some of the statements in that article including “he spent a good deal of time in the town nearest the treasure”.
      If this is true, then we must look at & around cities he spent a great deal of time in.
      West Yellowstone
      Some Airforce base in Colorado
      Santa Fe
      I know there’s probably more but that’s what comes to mind.

      “We were middle teens when we did that trip, and we quickly ran out of candy bars. When fishermen on the Gallatin learned what we were doing they gave us food.”

      Why the heck didn’t Forrest & Donnie have fishing rods on the walk from WY to Boze? They brought them up the Red Creek adventure.

      • where did you hear some Colorado base there are a few here but cant recall mention of this before no matter to many man made trails around any city

  30. has any one heard from Kieran and his partner just got back in to the techy world and thought id check in on them i dont have insta gram cant figer that out hope they are travlin well let me know some one please. ty

    • i cant figure that out yet but im working on it like a mm chest toy i found with a note inside i thought i might of got the clues right but nope dont think so cant read the language on the note so i think its — hmm well i dont know. any way it was a fun find. I hope your having fun too. this morning i had to open the window on my truck to let the sun shine in what a good trip exploring the land i loved it be safe think smart.

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