Gardner River…

December, 2018

By David Brinkley


Ok…here it is..90% solved. Where warm waters halt is Gardner Mont. (Treasure Island hint in TTOTC) Take it in the canyon down is to drive (to far to walk) south (down on a map) till you cross the big bridge over the Gardner river just past Mammoth Springs. Park immediately first parking area on the right. In Yellowstone they call them “pull outs” but we are parking, so “put in” BTW..the Gardner river is home of Brown ( trout, and they can’t swim upstream past Osprey falls) Make your way on left side of river, (nigh), upstream, toward Sheepeater Canyon (no place for meek) and Osprey falls. The “no paddle up your creek” is meaningless and not a clue. “Heavy loads and water high” are Osprey Falls. Heavy loads part refers to the Air Force V22 Osprey designed for heavy load lifting AND water high is the falls. Mr. Fenns nod to the USAF. Grassy area near a waterfall was significant to Forrest in ‘Nam and the tombstone of the forgotten soldier. The Blaze is a stone shaped either by chance or purpose, like a tombstone. I think then you either look quickly south to the spot where the chest is. It will be obvious once your there. ( “down” meant south earlier in the poem) that’s why he said a compass would be handy. Maybe you look actually down to the ground but I don’t think so. Forrest doesn’t want to be like that Soldier that passed on with no fanfare or glory. I won’t get out West to get the chest myself…I know this…but I also know this solve is correct…every single clue fits




127 thoughts on “Gardner River…

  1. Seems a bit thin to me…but I am sure someone will make it there tomorrow to check it out for you. Thanks for sharing…))

    • been there, its beautiful I’m not sure you should toss, no paddle up your creek out. its how i measure the place i should be . just my two cents. as i sit in st George Utah Got to say there’s beauty on the horn from Colo to here off to Airazona And back to Colo through Nm life is worth living so do it well my friends stay safe out there.

  2. I like it very thoughtful.. But I will say that being on the ground and seeing it on Google earth are 2 different critters.
    After I read the book finally …..I knew I had tried to make the solve way too hard. It is going to be something just like this solve or u got it right.

  3. 8.8 miles round-trip to see the falls. Bit of a haul twice in one afternoon. 17.6 miles. I get sweaty just thinking about it. Don’t try it before June. Good luck.

    • Wrong….I performed the calculation to where I believe the spot is….1.1 miles from the parked car… easy hiking. Don’t go all the way to Osprey falls, just toward it

  4. The concept appears to be correct with the placement of the clues. If you apply the same pattern to every other place wwwh, I fear it would fit just as well with 82% of them. So maybe you are onto something, if not the location of the chest, at least maybe the correct way of thinking. Good Job and Thanks for being SO bold AS to share with us all. Good funting.

    • I will say this out right….I do not have the time or inclination to go trouncing about the Rockies. It’s like this, I heard about this poem 2 1/2 years ago and knew I can crack a puzzle/ code written by some old man. FF said he first wanted to take his chest and go die somewhere. But he has a HUGE ego and wants the world to know him. So even he went to join his chest near death this puzzle would make him famous and let his loved ones properly bury his bones. I WANT IT TO BE FOUND BEFORE HE DIES AND WATCH THE FUN UNFOLD.
      I have put some effort into this solve and done it tired. BTW…he’s a horrible poet

      • I doubt you’re going to win over the hearts and minds of searchers by knocking Forrest Fenn.

        Confidence is important, but arrogance will get you nowhere.

        • Why do I want to win over hearts and minds of searchers?. I genuinely want someone to find this ASAP. As far as FF goes I think he should have donated to native Americans somehow. He got rich stockpiling their artifacts.

          • Mr. Brinkley,

            Foolish breath blows the hardest. The wisdom of the poem written by Forrest is that it can be applied anywhere. That includes your kitchen, your backyard, down the street and virtually anyplace. It lives on to apply to thousands+ of other “solves” that truly seem to fit with certainty.

            That is the wisdom of the, “old man.” The wise, “young man,” does not know WWWH with certainly (that is obvious), so might as well be spinning in circles. The way you throw off TWBNPUYC at least brings your spinning to an abrupt halt.

            I am only amused by your pride. I am sure that the, “old man,” gave you a huff, IF he was not too bored to read past the first few words.

            Ethical Dilemma

            PS. He made his fortune by being a savvy entrepreneur, negotiator and marketeer. He “donated/paid back” anyone “wise” enough to find it, regardless of age, race or status. Why paint that gesture with cruel motives?

            PSS. May your New Year be much better than the past…

          • Hi david, i like your solve and i am going to check it out this season. Only thing is i dont think leaving out the ‘no paddle’ part is right. That has to have some meaning and i’m thinking you’ll need to be standing there to figure that part out. My name is Thomas, i ‘ll email you if i find it!!

        • i second that thought spent last night in Lubbock Texas out running a storm its the land of cotton woke up at Forrest tire for a tire repair how can one go to that country without visiting the town of happy hit a few cold canyons on the way i know thats not part of the rocky mountains north of Santa Fe but i went any way just to catch the beginning the trailer is home and so are we stay safe out there Jeff Ranee Titan and Mom David I don’t think you’ll find a better man out there the poem is a quest either you run with it or you don;t good luck on your path.

  5. op: “I also know this solve is correct…every single clue fits”

    if I had a nickel….. etc..

    I think the total of said nickels can come pretty darn close to the weight of the TC and contents.

  6. Well that was short and sweet!!! What if your right!!! You should try to get out in the West!!!

  7. ~’Heavy loads part refers to the Air Force V22 Osprey’

    This aircraft was built in the 80’s [a quick read up tells; the first test flight was in 89, while it wasn’t used until in the field until 2007] long after fenn retired from the air-force [ a mere 2 or 3 years prior to fenn hiding the chest.] I’m curious to why you think fenn would use this as a clue reference, and how it connect to the location-?- other than a name of a falls.

    It just seems strange that, HL from the poem would have needed to be added in the mid 2000’s a couple years before the actually hiding of the chest…IF this was to be a reference in the poem. Is there anything on site the refers to the aircraft??

    You also said; ‘The “no paddle up your creek” is meaningless and not a clue.’
    Personally, I have a hard time thinking any line, sentences, stanza is meaningless… especially when fenn stated; every word was deliberate. why do you dismiss this line as meaningless?

  8. First off, thanks very much for sharing your theory, for that alone is more than I would ever do. But a omething deep down down inside tells me that the solve that has kept hundreds of thousands of botg searchers at bay for 8 plus years, is just a tad bit deeper than that. There’s no doubt that 90 percent certainty is a mighty bold bet to hedge.

    • Yep, its great when folks post a theory. It give the opportunity to have others evaluate the possibilities. Such as; How does a town [ even one with a small pop. of 875 ] be considered WWH? Why this town, and not [ for example WYS ] or any other town or city in any other state?
      As well as the idea that Red Hawk brought up… fenn would have traveled approx 18 miles with two trips [ @ 2 mph hiking ] is a 9 hour day none stop. [ I didn’t check the mile, I’ll take Red Hawk at is word ]
      There are a few considerations in this theory that needs a bit more explanation… the question is; how will David respond to those inquiries. Some folks get upset when asked about a solve they ‘know’ is correct.

      • WWWH is where the Gardner river, Lava Creek and the Boiling river dump into the ice cold Yellowstone River…in Gardner. About the Falls…The falls are not the destination but the clue that provides direction. In the poem he doesn’t hint that the falls are the goal but rather that is what’s “up your creek”. In the clues, you need STARTING POINT, DIRECTION, DISTANCE, STOP OR TURN POINTS , DIRECTION , DISTANCE, etc. until a defined END point. ELEVATION if needed but FF provided that and my location is nearly midpoint in the range he provided.

      • do not travel next to the river but on the easier route high above the river. the chest is 100% NOT IN A RIVER. His first plan was sit beside his treasure and die.

      • why i stoped in Lubbock Texas when i should of visited temple Texas is beyond me. any hu i beat the storm i realized my mis hap after re reading tftw. good day all be safe out there no biggy still a great trip the place has changed im sure. lots of blazes wrong place and elev

  9. Have to say it’s very difficult David.
    Nevermind some of your clues seem to be missing and others may be misinterpreted by you. There is no trail that goes up that river to the falls where you put in. Very brutal 2.4 mile hike next to the river with no trail. There are places you cannot keep going unless you cross the river. Possibly multiple times. I would be willing to bet it’s impossible for a 79 or 80 year old.

    Road Hawk offers a better path but still is brutal. The hike is rated moderate to difficult.
    Fenn may have used Bunsen Peak Service Road but not sure how he would get through the locked gate where about 20 vehicles are parked. Too risky to drive on a road that’s illegal to drive on with a few mil$ in the vehicle.

    I would rethink and definitely not attempt even if Fenn used a helicopter.
    Thanks for sharing…

        • Gardner is in Montana where he begins and the poem takes him into Wyoming where you and him think the treasure is JDA.
          3 years ago means nada.

  10. Mr Brinkley:

    At least you are brave enough to put your solve out there for all to tear apart. For that , I tip my hat to you.

    Unfortunately, I am 90 % sure your solve is incorrect. I am in the camp that he hid the cache in one day and returned home. Care you explain how he could get to your spot and back in one day without being discovered? Any solution that can’t pass that first test is incorrect in my mind.

    Best regards;

    1f Billy

    • Sherif,

      Where has ‘fenn’ mentioned he returned home in the same day?
      I mean, if you’re going to hang your hat on that idea… shouldn’t you have something indicating that to be factual? I haven’t read or heard fenn implying this. Sure, sure other searcher have said it… do you have a direct quote you are working with?

      A belief is not correct to the point that everything else in incorrect.

    • Have you been to Yellowstone in beautiful weather. Million people roaming around with backpacks. he would blend right in. FF didn’t say he returned home that afternoon, only to and from his car twice

  11. Nope. The second we read that one of the lines in the poem was meaningless in your solve, we know it’s not right. Plus it’s too far for an old man to go in one day. Devil is in the details and the details of this solve are off. Next!

    • FF said himself there are some “red Herrings”. It is 1.1 miles from car to approximate location. Also “Tarry scant with marvel gaze”????? gibberish and also meaningless

      • David;

        Just because you have not you been able to figure out what “Tarry Scant with marvel gaze” means, does not mean that it is “gibberish and also meaningless” An “IMO” might help others decide what is your opinion, and what is fact – Just sayin’ – JMO – JDA

        • I say meaningless because supposedly at this point the chest is in your hands. Poem is essentially useless after that point ……right? Look quickly down your quest to cease…. That’s why I cant help but wonder why anybody waste time on anything written after that. Get it and go

          • David;

            I am sure that you have read it before, but here it is again;

            Someone unfamiliar with your poem receives a message that says “meet me where warm waters halt, somewhere in the mountains north of Santa Fe”. Would they be able to work out where to go? If they can’t, would they need the whole poem, another stanza, or just a line or word to help them on their way? ~Phil Bayman
            “There are a few words in the poem that are not useful in finding the treasure Phil, but it is risky to discount any of them. You over simplify the clues. There are many places in the Rocky Mountains where warm waters halt, and nearly all of them are north of Santa Fe. Look at the big picture, there are no short cuts.” f

            I would not be so quick to discount all the words you can not find the time for – Just sayin’ – JDA

          • Down, as used in the poem, seems often to mean south. Quickly could mean something like – precisely. IOWs look precisely or directly south for perhaps a black (tarry) slice (scant) of marble (marvel) stone. There are many possible interpretations.

      • When did fenn say there’s some red herrings in the poem? That’s a new one in me…

        So, TBNPUYC and BTSWMG are just gibberish and means nothing-?- what’s your take on stanzas 1 5 6?
        It’s starting to look like you simply dismiss what your solve can’t provide for some lines. Anyways, Did you miss my the post about why your theory has ‘heavy loads’ – being the aircraft…?

        Really curious to how you came to that conclusion.

        • Stanza 1 was written, I believe, when FF intend to go with his chest and die alone then leave the poem to offer clues as to where his body was. OR he is talking about the micro autobiography in the chest with his treasure. no clues in this stanza.
          Stanza 5 and after….useless for locating chest, you found it in Stanza 4. 5 & 6 were also written when he planned to go die alone with his treasure and leave the poem. Read them like you would if he did this and it justifies his actions, as well as to document your rightful ownership since he’s not around. Like a will. So Stanzas 1,5,6 are useless

          • Thanks for your answers about stanza 1 5 6, But ya skipped the reason for the aircraft as heavy loads.
            The craft never flew in the field until 2007. We gave been told fenn started the poem around 1988ish or close to that time, took about 15 years to write it etc. wrote the poem from his memory of the location.. how did you conclude the plane is a clue and /or hint of a clue?

            You said you have been attempting this for over two years… you may have heard comments [paraphrasing] the chest not associated with a structure, under anything man-made, and second hand conversation about hoB and possibly not being associated with a structure…
            If the clues are associate with the poem’s clues [being that they were created to locate the chest] wouldn’t it be logical that none of the clues are associate with a man made structure, object, etc.?

            Still, just curious to how you came to the conclusion of the aircraft being a clue.

  12. I tip my hat as the lawman refers above.
    IMO,, from the point of where your WWH ,Gardner, you will start a nice vacation. You have as much chance findings the chest with that solve as much as I have a chance to give f a kiss without him ponding on me like that guy who moved like a butterfly and stung like a bee! I can picture f with Ali’s hand clenched and adding a bit of color to my eye. Yeah, finding Indulgence with your WWWH is not going to happen. I wouldn’t come close to trying to give that f guy a smooch. A pooch maybe (I hear he likes those), but not a smooch, NO WAY! Yeah, IMO.

  13. As I don’t have the book, can someone please share with me the “Treasure Island hint in TTOTC”? I could use a little Island time right now!

    • …some passage about FF reading the book as a kid about “the pirates treasure being buried on Gardner Island”

  14. With the government shut down and no workers in the state parks one of us might can slip in and just take that chest just a thought! Also David Brinkley, thanks for your solve we all have had those AHA moments and we just knew where it was and so forth and so on and so forth and so on ! Maybe it will be found very soon. Lots of luck and continue the chase. Ms. Girl

    • Kudos for you posting – everyone will have a go at your solve, which is to be expected. That area is a gorgeous part of the country and you should visit. Also, there is some great fishing on the YStone River just north of Gardner.

  15. Bravo David! never mind the peanut gallery here…
    there is a geocache hidden just beyond your area on the river. and this geocache is not listed on the official geocaching website…

    interesting to say the least.
    Oh! the thinks you can think!
    i think.

    • There’s a spot with just one big bright white rock all alone on it. (I accidentally spotted it in a photo a friend sent me, at a distance) This is THE blaze, HIS blaze. Exactly due south of that rock about 30 or 40 feet, the cliff has an accessible crag you can easily climb down and end up in a small cut out, like a shallow cave, that goes under the cliff (and under the “tombstone”). FF may have chisled something in to it, very likely, it would be easy and take no time at all. FF could very easily have walked there to die with the chest on his lap with a beautiful view, within sight of a waterfall, and a tombstone over his head. Explains what “gone alone in there” means. Just like that old French soldier in Viet Nam that he was obviously obsessed about in TTOTC. I think FF intended to not be similarly forgotten though because he was always going to leave this “poem” and a reason to find him.

      • Hmmm, this does not make any sense…its unfortunate that when some post they have to battle and white knuckle there way yo defend it as you have here David. Its because your solve has too many holes yet you are firm to believe it is absolute… as so many before you. please note:
        FF said, “If I was STANDING where the the treasure chest IS, I would see and smell (all these amazing things…)and a key element he stated was sage brush). First its not on some cliff where it could endanger kids. As he wants…”family’s and kids out looking for his treasure.” One other thing closer to home. How could he be “standing” if it is in “small cut out, like a shallow cave?” Sorry again just too many holes in your solve…and your deliberate in tact writing is weighing thin on your rep as an entry maker. Clueless to this respected forum and more so to the respect for FF and all other searchers on the hunt.

    • How exactly is percent effort measured? Regardless of who ever solves this correctly, it will seem like it was so easy. Like the tricky riddles that seem impossible till you get told the answer. I have worked with codes and cyphers and am a surveyor among my many talents….sorry I made it look easy

      • David;

        Every solve is easy, until one comes home empty handed. So far, there have been hundreds and hundreds of “Easy – WRONG – solves” – In My Humble Opinion anyway – JDA

      • Hi David,

        It’s true that effort is difficult to measure.

        How did you decide on 90% solved?

        We’re both estimating based on experience.

        I hope you hike out there in the summer and have a great time. I do believe you are starting in the correct general area.

  16. David, I don’t buy into your theory, not one moment, sorry. No paddle up your creek, is a valuable clue, HLAWH has nothing to do with the Osprey aircraft, its a man made structure and a Marine aircraft, not an Air Force aircraft. I also don’t buy into brown trout as being the hoB or any other critter. As F mentions a comprehensive understanding of geography, fish, bears etc. have nothing to do with geography.

    If one is not a backpacker carrying 20 lbs for around 8 miles gets to be heavy, add a 79-80 year old the task is harder. Doing it twice is out of reality, much too far to be done in one afternoon.

    Thanks for your post.

    • Ask a fly fisherman what he’s fishing for…..if different kinds of trout are around and its Brown trout he seeks, he”ll just say “Brown” almost always

    • As a surveyor I have packed around a lot of instruments, also my solve has the end point as the Blaze, not the falls. he just is telling you whats up stream. My target is less than 1.2 miles from where he parked. on easy terrain. You can see the falls from the spot.

      • David,

        You may have packed instruments around, you are not taking into consideration what an 80 year old can carry. Your solution is incomplete as you indicated above that TBNPUYC isn’t needed and TSWMG is just gibberish. I also want to say there are many places where brown trout are home to, such as the RM rivers, creeks and lakes. I don’t see how you can nail down a specific home for brown trout.

        F has indicated that not to discount any word. I say your excluding clues, which in my opinion is folly just because you can’t link them to your solve or don’t understand what is being said. I’m curious as to how you perceive stanzas 1 & 5 or even 6. Seems to me you said nothing about those stanzas, are you excluding those as well? I hope not.

        Just Say’n

        • as I’ve said before…everything after Stanza 4 is useless. The chest is in your hands…Stanzas 5 and 6 are written as a last will and testament…like “being of sound mind I hereby….blah blah” remember FF ‘s original intent was to leave the poem after he went off and died. “So why is it I must go….

        • A pre-mature resolution.

          Since we are on the cusp of a new year, I’ve decided to be more 4th-coming in order to encourage some of the junior searchers (3 years or less:) to “keep on keeping on”! Besides, I didn’t want the message of my post to be passed-by unappreciated. But I really can’t take credit for its composition…it was just off the top of my head, honestly! And boy howdy… how the Good Lord has a mysterious way of bringing things together!

          I’m referring to “4 see sing at cease”… in my previous post.
          #4 definition of “sing”: recount or celebrate in a work of literature, especially poetry.

          So, if you find yourself ceasing(see sing) at cease, you may want to recount, because I don’t feel you are celebrating all of f’s efforts in writing the poem. For the record… at the end of my journey I found Forrest to be a genius, but ONLY because I believe he is more a ‘reluctant grown-up’ than most.

          A short example, if I may…
          My Grandpa moved to an assisted living facility at almost age 90. After much downsizing, we moved his remaining possessions to his new apartment. Everything was put in its place, and he settled down into his Lazy-Boy. The last thing to complete the transition was to plug in his table lamp on the entertainment center. My Dad leaned around the back, plugged in the lamp and turned it on. Before he could even move… the lamp went off. So he reached around again and wiggled the plug and the lamp came back on. Within a split-second, the lamp went off again. He wiggled again, lamp on… then off. The jig was up when he heard my Grandpa and Mom giggling behind him and turned to see a remote control in my Grandpa’s hand.

          Anyone that doesn’t believe Forrest controls the lighting of our path will miss finding the treasure… in more ways than one! (JDA, easy big fella…the following was in MO:)

          Here’s to another year of adventure for those who find themselves young at heart!

          • Mia;

            Cute story, and I would not have jumped on ya – It was a story, not an opinion about the chase represented as a fact – 🙂 – HAPPY NEW YEARS- 🙂 JDA

          • Hey JDA, I appreciate your indulgence in my discussing Indulgence. Happy New Year to you also!

      • I’m not convinced about your solve but plan to be in the area this summer. Send me the gps coordinates i will check it out

    • Homebrew–
      Exactly. We only have half the story here– from the mouth of David Brinkley. When Chet Huntley shares what HE knows we might have a solve. I’ll wait for a Huntley-Brinkley solve, or one from Walter Cronkite. The Yellowstone River is very important though. I do agree with that.

      • The Yellowstone River is important to the fish living in it, in my opinion.

        Is the Yellowstone River important to a good solve of the poem?

        I’m not sure that everyone would agree that the correct answer is “Yes”.

  17. I think I want to know….Did he take the chest first and leave a million dollars in the trunk? In many parks or wilderness areas, human vultures watch people walk way away from their cars. Or did he take the gold and other stuff first and risk being spotted stashing something then walking away back to the car? I bring this up not to be funny but as a point of reason…..What if “the spot” is really like 50 feet (or less??) from the car? He said he made 2 trips in one afternoon. Maybe not ALL afternoon right? Maybe only 20 minutes total for both trips. Many, many are assuming he hiked for awhile, I now don’t think so. Too risky. What if he fell, bears, snakes and whatnot. IT IS REAL CLOSE TO WHERE HE PARKED. He never let his car out of sight. That’s also why he can TRUTHFULLY say he knows for a fact that people have been within 100 feet of the treasure….like maybe everyone that drove by. Like parking, stepping in the weeds to take a leak and jumping back in the car….

    • David,

      Forrest said no one was around when he hid the treasure. He also said his first trip from the car was the gold/jewels and the second trip was with the chest. F also indicated that hiding the treasure was done in one afternoon, not twenty minutes.

      My question to you is have you read or watched videos for after the fact comments [ATF] and questions & answers [Q&A]? It appears not after more than two years. There is a lot of information at the top of this blog and along the right side, there is much more information at other sites, that are below the bottom of the page.

      Those are just my thoughts and not intended as an attack.

      Just Say’n

      • If I stopped and had a coke on your porch at 2:00 pm and left, I could honestly say I had a coke at your house and I got it done in one afternoon. He IS crafty but cant afford to lie. FF wont let a specified time frame give away a travel circumference. I hold true to his first words…All you need is the Poem…Remember he really intended to be dead for all this…..not to answer all the questions. Honestly I think he sincerely regrets hiding the chest and really wants it back.

        • David;

          If he wanted it back, up until last year, he says that he could have done just that, but that now, it is a bit much for him – For someone who has spent more than a year on the search, you sure seem to skip over, or not find items worth your trouble – but what do I know? NADA – JDA

    • For years I have wondered about this possibility, and am still considering it.
      After thoroughly searching where I tink the treasure chest is, if I don’t find it
      there, I’ll look in an alternate location that is quite close to a road, and also close
      to a convenient place to park. Good luck to all of us, and happy new year.

    • Does it seem reasonable that Forrest would venture 50 feet from a parking lot and contently call that his eternal resting spot? Really?? Someone could stumble over his corpse as they took a leak. It might even be a young person on their first family outing into the great outdoors. Great optics Dave.

  18. I wonder why is this place so special to him. IMO WWWH is any trout fishable waters.
    and Brown probably is Brown Trout. You would think it is very sentimental place,
    Not as nature but some other reason. Family or wife thing. That is one thing I look
    at with any solve is where is the sentiment.

  19. Hi David,

    I’ve enjoyed your compact and concise solve. But IMO most of your solve does not fit to clues, and I agree to many other searcher’s comments. Rather than refuting your solve as a whole, I’ve duplicated your sentences in your comment first and added my comment or thoughts to them next.

    DB: Ok…here it is…90% solved.
    MK: Even if the poem is 99% solved, you may not find the chest. Sorry to say this. But Fenn has said that you have to be confident, meaning 100% sure of your solve. I think 90% doesn’t cut it.

    DB: Where warm waters halt is Gardner Mont. (Treasure Island hint in TTOTC)
    MK: I don’t know about the Treasure Island hint in TTOTC, but I think the warm river waters mixing with the cold river waters is not considered as a “halt”.

    DB: Take it in the canyon down is to drive (too far to walk) south (down on a map) till you cross the big bridge over the Gardner river just past Mammoth Springs.
    MK: I think “Take it in the canyon down” refers to take a view of the downstream canyon without physically traveling in that direction by some distance. Why are you stopping after the big bridge past Mammoth Springs BTW? There’s no explanations about it.

    DB: Park immediately first parking area on the right. In Yellowstone they call them “pull outs” but we are parking, so “put in”.
    MK: According to Google 3D map the first parking area comes up on your LEFT about 1 mile further down from the bridge (at Undine Falls). The parking area you mentioned is just a small shoulder past the bridge. I think that you park at the parking area is a correct interpretation of “put in” as long as the parking area is the right spot to begin walking towards the blaze.

    DB: BTW…the Gardner river is home of Brown (trout, and they can’t swim upstream past Osprey falls).
    MK: I think Gardener River is just one of many rivers where brown trout swim. I also think that Brown does not refer to the trout, rather it refers to the person named Brown.

    DB: Make your way on left side of river, (nigh), upstream, toward Sheepeater Canyon (no place for meek) and Osprey falls.
    MK: The distance seems to be about a mile or so, but the trail along the river (judging from the 3D map again) doesn’t look easy for me and you have to cross the river several times from left side to right. I do not agree to the distance Road Hawk mentioned in his comment. It seems like that his starting point may not be the same as David’s parking spot.

    DB: The “no paddle up your creek” is meaningless and not a clue.
    MK: This line IMO further describes the “no place for the meek” creek for the return trip. I think it’s part of an additional clue. Also in your solve the return trip is actually down the creek, not up. Please do not disregard any of his lines or words in solving his poem.

    DB: “Heavy loads and water high” are Osprey Falls. Heavy loads part refers to the Air Force V22 Osprey designed for heavy load lifting AND water high is the falls. Mr. Fenns nod to the USAF.
    MK: I’ll refer to Seeker’s previous comments on this (12/28/18 at 5:45 am).

    DB: Grassy area near a waterfall was significant to Forrest in ‘Nam and the tombstone of the forgotten soldier.
    MK: The area near the Osprey Falls is just a small piece of grassy land, and the scenery around it is not significant to me.

    DB: The Blaze is a stone shaped either by chance or purpose, like a tombstone. I think then you either look quickly south to the spot where the chest is.
    MK: I think the stone on the other side of the river opposite the grassy area doesn’t look like a blaze to me. A small patch of reddish land on the right side of the river about halfway to the Osprey Falls looks more like a blaze you’re looking for. If I were you I would rather try to find more prominent geological feature at or around “the end” referred to by Fenn in the previous line in the poem.

    DB: It will be obvious once your there. (“down” meant south earlier in the poem) That’s why he said a compass would be handy. Maybe you look actually down to the ground but I don’t think so.
    MK: The Google 3D map doesn’t give you a warm feeling that this place is the hiding spot. I think you rather have to look down literally instead of looking south. You don’t need the compass here to do that.

    DB: Forrest doesn’t want to be like that Soldier that passed on with no fanfare or glory.
    MK: That may be true for Fenn, but that may not be true for the searchers. When you actually find the treasure chest, you don’t want to blow your trumpet to announce it to the world. You want to keep it to yourself until you exchange the treasure with the real money first unless you’re an antique dealer or an art collector.

    DB: I won’t get out West to get the chest myself…I know this…but I also know this solve is correct…every single clue fits.
    MK: Please don’t get out West, because you may have to come back empty handed. My advice to you is that you would better stay home and play canasta, and try to work on another solve before you are on your BOTG.

    — MK

    • “Please don’t get out West, because you may have to come back empty handed.”

      This is horribly misguided advice IMO and completely antithetical to f’s purpose for the chase.

      To the contrary, I encourage you, DB, to test your solution first hand. In the area you are discussing, I doubt you’ll be disappointed with the journey even if you fail to find the tc. It’s beautiful wilderness. Wait until warmer weather, of course.

      • Hi aardvarkbark,

        If you’re interested in enjoying the beauty of the wilderness, you can go out there without the chase anytime. The thrill (or the lure) of the chase (and the possible monetary return) is the reason why you venture out there on the mountains, along the creek, on the river and in the wilderness on your BOTG.

        If you definitely know that you’re not close enough to the chest, then why bother to wear your boots in the first place? Just going out there yourself to prove that you’re wrong is not recommended. That’s what I wanted to say. I’m all for the enjoy of the beautiful nature yourself and/or with your family.

        — MK

  20. I still don’t get how people can think home of Brown is a fish. There are 9 clues that, one by one, need to eliminate all but one square foot of ground in the Rocky Mountains and Fenn saying to put in near some fish doesn’t do the trick. Also, after “look quickly down”, what about tarry scant and marvel gaze and worth the cold and brave and in the wood. Are those phrases all meaningless?

    • Not sure.. If WWWH is just a general term with lots of them. And you have to find the right one. North of Santa Fe. And a put in below the home of many.
      Named Brown. Another general term. It just seems as it would be Brown
      trout. How is there lots of these places and most are north of Santa Fe.
      Or the home of the browns. Never mind. His dad had one crazy hat.
      Wasn’t he nursed by his family near Gardner. dealing with the cancer.
      Maybe some solitude in that area. Anything is always possible.

      • What about “in the wood”?
        Surely you’re not looking in a desert.
        What about “your effort will be worth the cold”?

        I do agree that the 9 clues are in stanzas 2, 3 & 4 but there seems to be hints in there but will not get you closer to the chest.

        I see your 1.1 miles and is doable but I think it’s up a creek and not a river.

  21. David, Thank you for sharing your solve with all of us. My solve is in another state, but I like hearing about other people’s solves… sometimes I am able to glean new ideas from their stories.
    Now, just one question I have for you:
    Do you have a sister named Christie? – Hopeful

    • This message is all part of my opinion.

      Don’t get me started about Christine. Wasn’t that the name of the car that hit
      Stephen King when he was jogging? While the driver of the vehicle was distracted by his dog (Cujo, right?).

      OH! , Christie, you say . . . not Christine? *Well* that’s different . . . nevermind.

  22. You lost me at “Where warm waters halt is Gardner Mont. (Treasure Island hint in TTOTC)” No need to go further because this is a guess. Where in your solve do you use the poem solve? I see nothing as far as solving the poem. All I see is a guess, then another guess, and snowball, and no poem solve. To get Gardiner because something outside the poem hinted at it is sketchy at best.
    ” Heavy loads part refers to the Air Force V22 Osprey designed for heavy load lifting” again, a guess, and I side with Seeker on this one. Don’t see the POEM solving.
    “The Blaze is a stone shaped either by chance or purpose, like a tombstone.” Another guess.
    “every single clue fits.” Again, an assumption that you know what the clues are. More coincidence don’t you think?
    Lastly, for him to not need to write the 5th and 6th stanzas, and go ahead and do so is a waste. He would gain nothing in his writing. With SOME words not needed, but bad idea to miscount any of them, to do away with three stanzas is a lot more then a few words.
    I don’t see your solve precise enough to get someone within a few steps. I admire the write up, but a solve of the poem would be preferred.

  23. I have something to ask any searcher with time to respond … is it crazy of me to think that if someone has come within 200 ft they have of course also been within 500 and 1000 ft!(within)?

    • I might have explained it wrong, I mean if you have benn within 200 ft then of course you could of also been closer than that. If within a 200 ft circle you could have stepped on it is what I’m trying to say?

      • Moose;

        I agree, “Within 200′” means that you have been at least within 200′ – maybe much closer – Only Forrest knows for sure…depending on a PIC you shared with Forrest, or how detailed your description. JMO – JDA

          • Moose,

            I am not the avid blogger like JDA and many others. However, at a key point in time (Spring) Forrest posted about the chest saying something to the effect that – indulgence would – once again – feel the -vibration- of hiking boots. So, does that answer your question?

            Someone who is more of a Fenn scholar than I could point you exactly to that post.

            Ethical Dilemma

      • Hi Moose,

        Here is what I think about 200′ and 500′ hint.

        Like Fenn said, the searchers somehow were able to solve the first clue, WWWH, and decided to follow the canyon down driving to the put-in point below the home of Brown. While they were driving they noticed another parking lot along the road and everybody was parking their cars there. So the searcher also parked his car, came out of his car, and started walking to see more scenery. It was a nice spot and the scene was beautiful. I think that was about 500′ from the chest. But some other guys started to hike the trail to see another view of the scene. The searchers reached a certain spot and saw another beautiful view of the scene. They saw the trail continue but since they already saw the scene twice (first at 500′ and then 200′ from the chest) they gave up (or didn’t bother to continue to the end of the trail to see the scene for the third time) and returned to their cars and continued driving to their put-in point according to their solves.

        If they continued to the end of the trail they might be a lot closer to the hiding place of the chest, maybe even within several feet. But even at that point they didn’t think they were so close to the chest since that particular spot was not included in their solve.

        — MK

  24. Has anybody explored other directions out of Gardiner? The Yellowstone River is “not related to any dam.” Is there a “canyon down” that’s not too far? I’m already thinking about Spring, and as nice as YP is, I don’t believe The Major would want any of us to have to wrangle with territorial park rangers (that’s their job!) at our moment of triumph. Also, do not neglect the humble apostrophe…
    Happy New Year, stay safe.

  25. 44.926574,-110.674141 This is a point adjacent to Osprey Falls on the east side of Sheepeater Cliffs where one could have a potential marvel gaze. Is this too far to walk? The terrain, elevation levels differences south of the Grand Loop Rd look a bit dodgy.

  26. Nah! Just a vacation to go look at some land. Checked out the Enchanted Circle Scenic Byway. Taos, Ojo Caliente, Los Alamos. Found 1.99 gas in Espanola. Northern New Mexico has some beauty for sure and the Earthships are funky. I still think WWWH is in Wyoming and the chest is in MT. Gardner, Montana is Forrest’s Joker. He is a sly one.

    • You can’t fool me.
      I know you were on a Fenn search.
      I keep an eye on you guys I think were close.
      Gardner MT is viable but not high on my list.
      Jokers wild.

      • That Joker thing is something to think about. Life is a Game of
        Poker. Front of TTOTC. Was FF eulogy for his friend. Mike
        Kammerer. Became good friends with FF. Built home in Santa Fe.
        Left a lot of Money In Jackson hole. Vacationed with Fenns in
        Aspen.. Had the kids working with FF at his dig site. Some one
        FF liked A lot. Here I am rambling on again. New Years eve.
        Waiting for the neighbors to get the fireworks started.

  27. It is interesting that the town of Gardiner is spelled differently from the river and canyon, which are both named Gardner. Apparently, all of these are named after a local trapper from the 1830’s named Gardiner, and a later surveying expedition messed up the spelling of the river.

  28. David Brinkley, I have never intentionally insulted anyone in the search community, nor have I ever belittled anyone’s solution to Forrest’s poem; however, since you wear your arrogance on your sleeve and have gone out of your way to publicly insult Forrest on this forum, let me just say, you’re quite the fool.

    I would just add that you’re an idiot, as well.

    This is all ad hominem, of course, and intentionally so. In my humble opinion, it’s all you deserve.

    Now if you would just kindly go away and stay there, that would be fantastic.

    From a friend of Forrest Fenn,

    Joe Monday

    • Anger won’t help solve the poem. Cool analysis and persistence are required,
      and apparently persistence is also needed after the solve has been completed.
      All my opinion.

  29. Has anyone considered Lake Ennis or Ennis Montana as in the famous Ennis-Brown House?

  30. David – I agree with you. I also own a 42 acre ranch 4 miles north of Gardiner. I’ve been thinking of these clues for years.
    A couple things.
    Home of Brown. The mascot of Gardiner high is the Bruin. Bruin, Dutch for “brown”, is used in English as a folk term for brown bears. Gardiner High is literally “The home of the Browns”
    Blaze. Not many as dramatic as Devil’s Slide. Right out my front door.
    Water High and Heavy Loads. There has been a homemade hydropower plant for many years above Pine Creek Falls. The heavy loads are electric power.

    • I keep coming back to the idea that Forrest would have been very familiar with Grafton Tyler Brown (the artist that painted landscapes in Yellowstone) and would have know that he did live in Helena Montana at some point. And the name Helena means “light, torch or bright” in Greek (i.e. the blaze). I also found a “Middle Man Mountain” not too far East of Helena and there is a “Warm Springs Road just south of Helena but I can’t seem to find a good way to tie it all together.

  31. I keep tellin y’all from Boiling River by land down to Joe’s safe spot ta enter them nasty rapids that made ol’ Yankee so much loot, so he said, they, say. Anyway, livin through them rapids head up the creek. You’ll see it. Just keep lookin. Keep tellin’ ya. My knees’ all wore out, so just send me some loot when ya lug it back.

  32. Hi David Brinkley…interesting solution and I like that it is in close proximity to Rye Pond. Good “Catch” haha. I have been wondering about that crazy catchers mitt/ baseball glove Dizzy is wearing in the revised OUAW. Anyway, I digress. Another way into the same general area is via the old abandoned road that starts at Glen (wooded area?) Creek. You could ride your bike the 4 miles on relatively flat terrain pretty easily…one trip on the bike and 2 short trips to hide the trove. Similar idea to the Grebe Lake adventure. When you are done just throw the bike into the “waters high”. Who’s to say you can’t? Interesting that Chet Huntley put Big Sky Resort on the map not too far distant from your solve. But again, I digress.

  33. David,

    This is KVD. I worked on this theory back in 2016 with you on the bridge project.
    I’m heading out west to look for the treasure the summer I get out of the Army; 2021.

    There’s some other hints I’ve studied and looked into as well that further give details on where the chest may be placed.

    I’ll let you know how it goes!

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