Odds n Ends About Fenn’s Treasure Hunt Part Eighty Eight…

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559 thoughts on “Odds n Ends About Fenn’s Treasure Hunt Part Eighty Eight…

  1. There are lots of things that can be considered “warm waters”. Some may be a bit of a stretch (such as “people”). Keeping it basically simple and uncomplicated, one would think of actual water that is warm, and also known to exist in several examples/instances. Hot springs comes to mind. But this
    is not to suggest that you should ignore the possibility that FF was thinking
    about tears in the eyes of crying people, because this possibility may help in
    solving (or confirming a good solve of) the poem. I think other biological liquids (blood, urine, etc.) may be considered as well, but mainly for the purpose of confirmation/support for a solve.

    As always, this message is part of my opinion.

    • There is another poster on dals that claims to be Queen Elizabeth too. I think they are the same person with several ID’s
      Here. Sounds familiar.

      • “There is only one of me as far as I know. Except when I look in the mirror. I often wave to myself. I can’t resist. What a lovely person that is in the mirror”

        —Queen Elizabeth

  2. From the last Odds n Ends…

    JDA’s example- I call up a travel bureau and say that I need the most scenic route to Santa Fe, NM.

    Seeker’s reply- JDA’s travel agent is a good example of being able to skip over the ‘start’ IF he could start somewhere down the road where the ‘scenic’ drive begins, idea.
    That doesn’t make WWsH really necessary to the point; without it we “don’t have anything” IF we can skip it… or it’s just a simple starting line.

    JDA’s example is not a good example for what Seeker attributes a mistaken flaw in it by being able to “skip over the start”. This flaw of being able to start somewhere down the road where the ‘scenic’ drive begins.

    The reason JDA’s example isn’t a good one is because we know the precise ending place (last clue solved) which is Santa Fe, NM.

    Again, it’s comparing apples and oranges.

      • Robert, just in JDA’s hypothetical example. JDA’s use of Santa Fe, NM equates to the last location needed (hence last clue) in his example.

        • Makes sense, I didn’t initially look at it that way. I thought I had missed a major announcement of some sort lol

    • I’m kind of wondering the same thing Robert. I thought Doug Preston told us that Forrest said the final clue was finding his car in the parking lot at Denver Museum of Nature and Science, or something close to that.

      Now if this is true it is a clever hint by Forrest. It leaves a very large area of possibilities or a really small area of conformations. I believe the latter.
      Now I wish someone actually knew what the “blaze” is and could whisper it to me. Heck while I’m wishing I need ….. and …… and definitely more time in the Rockies.

      Also thanks MJ.

      Good luck to those still searching this season and watch out for traps DG is setting. They might be bison patties to slip on taking you down the canyon and getting you off her mountain. 🙂


      • The final clue would be where they found his car:
        in the PARKING LOT of the (this part does not matter,
        it could be anywhere). You’ve heard me say this
        before , Bur. Ask a kid where they would park a
        car if they had one and the answer will be- on the tires.
        If your car is in a parking lot. then it’s probably
        parked. LOL, then google -contact patch- and
        you’ll have half the answer. A kid won’t get the
        second half. You have to be old enough to
        remember things like Burma Shave signs and
        advertising jingles. All IMO, of course, but I did
        park cars in Seattle in the 70’s, and when I
        close my eyes and imagine holding the chest
        over my head and shaking it, l can hear that
        jingle. Good luck to all that plan on squeezing
        in that last search of the season in MtWy.

    • FD,
      You conveniently skip the whole premise of the conversation about [WWsH] AKA the first point of a scenic drive.

      The Travel Agent gave a point {aka WWsH}, however, JDA could simply start his fun little, out of the way drive, at any point {aka the clues} he chooses… because he has a map {aka The travel agents suggestions} showing those places {aka later clues}.
      This leaves the starting point unnecessary to be at or even know of.
      Even IF the travel agent doesn’t mention that point {WWsH} and starts with a later point {any other clue} the drive will still end up at the last point, following the travel agents suggestion {aka the poem’s clues}
      Hence the flaw !…. If it is at all possible to find a later clue and just go to it… the stomping point to point method doesn’t require WWsH to even be known or can be skipped altogether, because points [later clues] can be found… even IF it’s only from clue number two.
      And that is out of the many possible routes {readers see in the poem} the travel agent suggested for JDA little scenic drive.
      IMO, and from many comments about the first clue by fenn, there is no way we can start at any later clue, including clue two. The point to point method allows any other clues to be a starting point… that’s a flaw.

      The question now is; IF you can be sure of hoB… ” why are you concerned about where warm waters halt?”

      Three answers are possible;
      1. You don’t have to be worried about WWsH at all. Problem? It contradict fenn telling us we need the first clue or we “don’t have anything.” If that clue is not nailed down “stay home”
      2. It is possible to discover later clues and be sure of them. Problem? We have been told looking for later clues is a folly, clue have to be followed in order of the poem [ constitutive and contiguous ]
      3. We should be asking ourselves “why” we “should be concern” about WWsH? Because many ATFs tell us we need that clue, and to Begin there.
      If stomping mode allows WWsH to be skipped by… it doesn’t explain “why” WWsH is needed at all. Stomping mode/method is a flaw method for the reason; there’s chance to “physically” go to, start at, later clues [ be it even the second clue ]. LOL even the last one…. You just lost consecutive order in any stomping mode if you can bypass the first clue… physically and/or not knowing of it.

      • Seeker, you said:

        “Stomping mode/method is a flaw method for the reason; there’s chance to “physically” go to, start at, later clues [ be it even the second clue ]. LOL even the last one…. You just lost consecutive order in any stomping mode if you can bypass the first clue… physically and/or not knowing of it.”

        From everything I read it sounds like the most direct route to the chest involved progressing through all of the clues. How would stomping mode be flawed if a person has to go by WWWH to get to the chest?

        • I think the method or reasoning is not flawed… IF the searcher has [correctly deciphered] the clues. Your reasoning is sound Aaron…

          • I see your point Seeker, yet there is still a way for us to have to physically be at the location of WWH and CD in order to start walking a point to point. If the most direct route requires parking at the confluence of WWH and CD then we have no other choice. I’m not saying your method is totally wrong and only point to point for all 9 clues is totally wrong. Just pointing how missing the first clue could be impossible in a point to point search.

        • Yes, Exactly, Aaron.
          The first clue can not be passed by nor not solved. A stomping mode method of point to point can allow a searcher to correctly find clue two or three or four and go from there… It’s the premise of a point to point method.

          Some will argue that this can’t be done because we need WWsH to start with. Well, why? is the question. IF we can know of a later clues the method allows possible clues skipped.
          IF you take the reverse engineering Q&A to say; we can find hoB… why do we need WWsH, CD, NF, BTFTW?
          I’ll say it again, I don’t think fenn meant the answer [ being a question itself ] to say we can find or be sure of hoB. He’s asking Why we should be concern about WWsH.

          IF all the clues are of places, and all the clues can be found married to a map… we, by right’s, can guess a good guess and go from there.
          LOL like we all seemingly are doing with WWsH.

          This is why I asked; Why do we need WWsH?
          I didn’t say this; fenn has.,, if we don’t have it we don’t have anything.
          It’s been solved, indicated, and with the second clue as well and folks on site… yet seemingly folks left the poem. Well, isn’t the poem a map?

          2 conclusions;
          No one can read a dang map…
          We Need to be at WWsH… and know why.
          Passing it by or not getting it correct is not going to cut it.
          But the point to point method allows that to happen. Especially if you take the reverse engineering comment as it stand and ***sounds like*** ~ and not compare it to all the other ATFs.
          Fenn is reversing the engineering back on the question; Why should we be concern about WWsH?

          You said ~’the most direct route to the chest involved progressing through all of the clues….’ I agree.
          the point to point {stomping} again, is basically eliminating the need for the first clue… it allows us to figure out any other clue and go from there [ that point ].

          • Seeker;

            You say, “I’ll say it again, I don’t think fenn meant the answer [ being a question itself ] to say we can find or be sure of hoB. He’s asking Why we should be concern about WWsH..

            Unless you have the chest, how can one be sure of anything?

            Why do you say, “He’s asking Why we should be concern about WWsH..” IF we have found (any) hoB we should NOT be concerned with WWsH – Isn’t that so? We have passed that clue haven’t we?

            As I said earlier, knowing WHY Forrest chose HIS WWsH spot, only Forrest knows, and I (for one) can not see any reasoning in the remainder of the poem. You, to me, are asking an unknowable question. JMO – JDA

          • JDA ~ IF we have found (any) hoB we should NOT be concerned with WWsH – Isn’t that so? We have passed that clue haven’t we?

            Read the question again. It don’t say the searcher found anything prior, it is asking if they could reverse engineer to WWsH, not back to it again.

            And you misunderstand the “why”
            It doesn’t matter why fenn chose the location /place of WWsH… It matters “why” we need to know what to do when there.

          • Seeker;

            You say, “And you misunderstand the “why”
            It doesn’t matter why fenn chose the location /place of WWsH… It matters “why” we need to know what to do when there.” Now THAT is a question, phrased in a way that I can understand, that I can possibly answer.

            THIS new question: ” It matters “why” we need to know what to do when there.” IS answerable, where-as my interpretation of what you have been asking for several days was NOT answerable.

            THANKS MUCH for clarifying. When at WWsH, according to the poem, one must “Take it in the canyon down.” By your observational theory, we must “Take in the view.” I agree that this is very possible by the definition of these words. Others will say that we need to stomp our way down the canyon.

            Either way, we need to “Find” elements of the poem.
            We MAY need to “see” something on the longest day of the year, at sunrise, and “do something” in relation to what we see. All doable things.

            Look, see, plan, and do – according to how we use the words.

            Thanks for clarifying the question – JDA

          • By the way, I actually believe that the first 3 or 4 clues could be all very close to each other, and right at the BOTG spot.

      • Seeker;

        You missed MY point entirely. Although “I” knew that I wanted to go from Pocatello to Santa Fe. I had NOT mentioned it to the travel agent. Because I had NOT mentioned it, the travel agent could have started anywhere and developed “any” scenic route to Santa Fe.

        That was my point. One MUST know where to start, or you will pick the wrong route. So, the first question the travel agent HAD to ask (we must ask) is “Starting From what spot”? We MUST know where to start from, or stay home, and forget the trip all together.


      • Seeker;

        I have to admit it. You have lost me. If Forrest has said that if you have found hoB, why are we interested in WWWsH? Or words to that effect. Why must I know anything about WWsH – much less WHY it is the correct one.

        IF I KNOW hoB, I do NOT need to know CD or WWWsH – or so Forrest said.

        You keep asking WHY we need to know what WWsH is? Forrest is the only one who can answer that question isn’t he? When I turn on a light switch, and the light comes on do I have to know WHY ithe light came on? Probably not – I just benefit from the fact that it does come on.

        IF I pick the correct WWsH spot – by intuition, magic, logic, or a lucky dart throw, why must I know WHY it is the correct WWsH.
        Assuming it IS the correct WWsH location, and I (someone) goes on to find Indulgence – Will there be a test where Forrest asks – “Why did I (Forrest) pick the WWsH spot? If the “Finder fails the test, what is Forrest going to do? – Take back the chest? Yes, I know I am being silly. No offense to Forrest or anyone else.

        Will you please explain your reasoning as to why answering the WHY question is so important. We bloggers / searchers have given OUR reasons, which you have discounted, or say are wrong according to how you read the poem. Help us out here will YA’?

        Not pickin’ a fight, I just do not understand WHY “you” think that this question must be answered, when Forrest says that it CAN be reverse engineered and that IF you know a later clue we should not be concerned with it. Just askin’ JDA

        • JDA,

          You have clue’s 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 to figure out.
          You figure out clue 4 and ask fenn can we reverse engineer clues 3 2 1 to clue 1?
          Well you should be bale to right? But apparently you didn’t need clues 1 2 3 and are sure of 4.
          The questioner skipped WWsH, skipped CD, skipped NF,BTFTW and apparently is sure of hoB.
          Can that truly happen?
          Not by all the comments the first clues that as been told of for many years… IF we don’t have the first clue we don’t have anything.

          You said ~ ‘IF I KNOW hoB, I do NOT need to know CD or WWWsH – or so Forrest said.’

          IF that is true… all those other comments / Q&As etc {AFTs] have to be false then.

          You said; ‘You keep asking WHY we need to know what WWsH is? Forrest is the only one who can answer that question isn’t he?’

          Sure he know the answer… but are we not supposed to figure it out?? Where’s the thinking and analyzing?
          If all you hope the first clue is, is nothing more than a starting line… then again, we can just start at hoB without even putting a single thought to it [wwsh], or the CD, or NF… just look for hoB, and not care that fenn has said looking for later clues is a folly, nail down the first clue or stay home, if we don’t ave the first clue we don’t have anything.

          Quick, quick !… which comment doesn’t belong with the others???
          We can skip right to hoB?
          We need to be concern about WWsH?

          IT can’t be both… and I say all those comments ring true to each other, if ya just think about them.

          • Seeker;

            I have said that one MUST start at the beginning – period, One MUST figure out the correct WWsH spot – period. Garbage in = garbage out, as some say in the computer world. Wrong starting place = wrong end spot – period. Thus, the importance of thinking and analyzing the first clue – “Begin it WWWsH….”

            If, on the other hand, one were to accidentally, magically stumble on the correct hoB, and later finds Indulgence (which proves that the hoB WAS the correct one) would one really have to reverse engineer back to the WWsH spot? Sure, it would be nice to know, but since the treasure is already found, what is the need. THAT is how I interpret Forrests statement: ““If you are sure about the location of home of Brown why are you concerned about where warm waters halt?

            Your new explanation of the WHY question – What is it that we are supposed to do once at WWsH? – Although not really answering the WHY – seems a lot more logical and answerable – to me anyway. JMO – JDA

          • The reverse engineer question about hoB was a HYPOTHETICAL question. F’s answer to that question doesn’t have to be such that it’s possible to do that. Especially since he’s indicated in other statements that it’s not the way to find the tc.

        • Hi JDA,
          I agreed with your conclusion that “IF I KNOW hoB, I do NOT need to know CD or WWWsH”. Of course, it will be shortcut to go directly to the hoB but even Forrest said: “If you are sure about the location of home of Brown why are you concerned about where warm waters halt? And “throw in some gas money for a percentage of the take”?
          Maybe in this answer Forrest gave us some hint about the distance between the hoB and WWWH i.e. that we should drive between these 2 points?

          • If you know the spot where the chest is, why are you so concerned about the blaze, hoB, or even wwwh?
            You’re not. But if there is only one way in or out, then you have to start at wwwh.
            You all are going with the theory that this whole thing revolves around solving clues. That is not what f has told us. It’s putting an “x” on a map. It doesn’t seem obvious that f is saying you can reverse engineer, from a spot on a map? Doesn’t that say that it’s not clues but the poem to solve? He’s even said he has not given the answers to wwwh, and the blaze, hello. How can you solve clues when the two clues we know about have no answer?
            Even from Jenny’s video, ” how will I know if I have the clues right before my family and me drives out to get the treasure?” — You probably won’t. But yet the path will be direct and we will go in confidence. How is that possible?
            If you know where the spot is, you can go in confidence. Your path will contain the so called clues. Some you will know but not all. You cannot go in confidence if you are solving clues, period.
            The clue solvers need to go point to point, from one clue to another, but they will not know if they have the clues correct. A searcher that solves the poem and gets a spot, can still go in confidence to that spot.
            Wwwh is important, because if you don’t know the spot, you won’t have the correct start, and you have nothing. The correct solve of the spot will have the correct wwwh to start at. Why so important? Because it’s where the car is parked.
            A lot of solves we have read are point to point, and like Seeker has pointed out, it’s very easy to just go to the third or forth or fifth clue and start from there. This cannot be what f wants us to do, and is just flat wrong.
            It’s not a point to point solve. It’s following a path to a spot. Sooner or later, you have to walk the course. You don’t walk from one spot, to another, to another, where has f said that? It’s walking a path to a spot. To confuse that clues are needed to be stomped out instead of being followed because of a path is a big mistake. That does not yield a confident solve.
            We can argue all day long about solving clues, I mean, we only know of two for sure, and there is no answer to those two, so it’s a mute argument. The sooner a searcher stops thinking this way, solving clues and going point to point, and seeing that you cannot go with confidence this way, and that solving the poem is totally different, the sooner searchers will be on the right path. All, IMO.
            If you don’t know the first clue you have nothing, because having the first clue, with a correct solve, means you have the correct spot. But, the first clue is just a starting point, that’s all. The start to a path with one way in, one way out. This is why you cannot go to later clues first. You have to follow the path, which means following the clues. But in actually solving clues, it’s the last that needs to be solved in the end, so the spot the poem gives will have you follow a path with 8 clues. Every other way of thinking, with concerns to clues will lead to problems with the ATF’s, somewhere.

      • Ummm, Seeker. I have no idea what you are talking about. Just about everything you posted about was not involved in JDA’s scenario. I just focused on the info JDA provided us in his travel agent scenario.

        You can’t act like I skipped things if JDA didn’t put it in his scenario. Lol

    • If you are searching Yellowstone you might want to hurry. They just had first snows. https://weather.com/storms/winter/news/2019-09-10-first-snow-utah-wyoming-yellowstone-grand-teton
      The timing on your season will depend on the location and other factors. If you have a water crossing that affects your season because snow melt can flood a stream for weeks in the spring. If you are northern latitude the snows come sooner and last later. Down south they have monsoon months that you must search in the morning and be gone by noon or else you get washed away. In some places, the undergrowth goes nuts and makes searching tough in certain months as well. It pays to read a few trail hiker blogs for your area to get an idea of the weather before you commit to a trip.

      • The weather is what ended my search season last year. I was a mile and a half from my search area and it started hailing. I was on a long dirt road and didn’t want to get stuck so far off the the main roadway.

        I have a 4 day window to search this year at the end of the month but now I suppose it depends a lot on the weather. Being from Ohio and trying to understand how the weather works in the Rocky’s isn’t easy!

        Stay safe, everyone!


        • On my journeys I carry in my vehicle. An axe, a come along, straps, rope, and a set of Trac Grabbers are nice if ones wheels and wells allow room for rig when needed. g

    • Hello Eaglesabound. I watch weather reports to see what is happening in and around Colorado. Some mountains got a little snow last night. On average, we can get a little over of an inch of snow in Denver in September, and first freeze I believe around the first week or two in October; again, averages. The northern search areas may get affected first, while the southern states may stay warmer longer.

  3. I’m not his Travel Agent, but I sure want to get together with my homie JDA and show him where I think warm waters halt. Long range forecast is showing me that there is not much time left for BOTG in 2019 ;-^{.

    • David;

      email me at SculptorJDA at aol dot com. I do NOT discuss in emails anything I will not discuss on-line, and I do not search for others, nor do I read other’s solves. But, if you want to chat you now have my email address – JDA

  4. Pablo, it’s not the clues that need to be focused on. It’s the poem. Try doing what everyone else is not doing. Trying to solve clues. Instead, focus on the poem. Pretend f never said there are nine clues. Think there are no clues and solve the poem. Whether clues can be solved or not, solving the poem will do that for you.
    Everybody is trying to solve clues, so do something different. Or, you could just head out toward the Madison and wonder around until it gets dark.
    I will keep saying it, you will know the end spot before you know wwwh. That’s just how the poem is written. To put an “x” on a map. And, since there is no answer to wwwh from f, that seems the only way to find wwwh, or your start place, by solving the poem, putting that “x” on a map, finding out where to start your path, and that’s wwwh.
    The fifth line will hint at things associated with wwwh. And I’m sure there are other references that will be compared.
    Think about the early searchers that found wwwh. In there solve, they solved for wwwh and started at that location, they just didn’t know the significance. But for them to start there, means they either just walked around there or they ended up there because their solve told them that it is wwwh. So how could they not know the significance of where they were at? Because that is not the way f intended for wwwh to be found. Wherever we all start, our solve told us to start there. We are fully aware why we are there. Same with early searchers. So why would f say they didn’t know it? Because you cannot solve for wwwh in that way. There is no answer given by f to wwwh. So unless they knew where the end spot was, which they didn’t, then f can easily say they didn’t know because he knows that it’s not found that way.
    Like I said, approach the poem like you never heard there are 9 clues. We only know of two, and saying anything else is a clue is just flat wrong. We don’t know. Too many solves have to say hoB is a clue, if not, they forget about the solve. That is just foolish. If it’s a clue, the poem solve will tell you.
    More studying of the poem, not the clues…

  5. Hi Aaron, I’ve also thought that if there was a clue in that chapter, it had to do with the girl. Hidden face, long braids, strut, good school.

  6. Hi Aaron,

    It’s very unlikely that PIBTHOB is the second clue. IMO, but it is clue #3 and it determines where you will park your car and start walking.
    Some searchers that have cracked clues #1 (WWWH) and #2 (ATIITCD, NFBTFTW) might be stopped at correct parking lot and walked around without realising that they are below of the hoB. Moreover, they most likely never knew that they did cracked clues #1-2. As Forrest said nobody will know that clues #1-2 were solved correctly before he/she found the chest. Currently searcher community has tens or maybe hundreds solutions for WWWH and TIITCD, NFBTFTW. Maybe some of them has correct solution but they can’t crack the hoB correctly and their BOTG failed.
    Forrest definitely did very good job when coded some area as hoB – he said that he never got the solution for this clue (#3 or 4):
    ”There have been a few people within 500′. I think there have been people within a couple hundred feet. They figure the first two clues, but they don’t get the third and fourth and they go right past the treasure chest.”
    I’m not sure 100% that the hoB is #3 clue i.e. it could be #4. But anyway it is clearly that nobody get the hoB correctly.

    • “people that were with(in) 200 feet didn’t know that they were that close to the treasure, and they walked right on by.” – from the Lure 5/18/17 notice he used the word walked. If you pair that with the quote you posted: ”There have been a few people within 500′. I think there have been people within a couple hundred feet. They figure the first two clues, but they don’t get the third and fourth and they go right past the treasure chest.” It seems that the 2nd clue clue can get you within 200 feet on foot, hence the walked right on by it.

      How can this be true if PIBHOB, as you state, is the third or fourth clue?

      It only makes sense IMO to be walking by clue two, perhaps at the junction of clues 1 and 2.

      • Aaron, you quoted Forrest as saying, “people that were with(in) 200 feet didn’t know that they were that close to the treasure, and they walked right on by.” – from the Lure 5/18/17

        Forrest said “People” not searchers or treasure hunters. I don’t know, but is it possible that they were just other people , not TTOTC searchers??

        • Its not a matter of thinking, it’s a matter of trying, Sure I mean people figured the first couple of clue and unfortunately walked past the treasure chest.

          Why would people not be searchers? Why would people try to figure out the clues if not searchers?
          fenn has used terms such as; searchers, people, others, even referring to them a *some* and all related to the chase. a couple time he even call searchers, seekers. I think one time he said; folks.

        • “Craig, there is no substitute for THINKING and planning and observing and looking at maps, unless it’s the desire to keep it simple.f”

          “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

          Ya, I know, thinking didn’t solve it but got them within 200 ft.

          Trying didn’t solve it but got them within 200 ft.

          Now you say something really dumb again that contradicts what Fenn said Seeker.

          You are target fixated on the non stomping method and believe in your own theory. Go test it it out and see how well it works.

          You pick and choose the ATF’s just like everyone else.

        • So, Jake, You’re saying “People” mentioned in those comments and others are not searchers?
          I’d think again…

        • Here are two quotes where he uses “searchers” when referring to the 200 footers:

          – Last month, you indicated that still nobody has correctly solved beyond the first two clues. Is this correct? Still nobody has solved beyond the first two clues?

          FF: Very few people tell me exactly where they are searching so there is no way for me to know. Some searchers have been within 200 feet.


          and another:

          Are there signs that people are getting closer to solving your puzzle? How many clues have people solved now?
          Searchers have come within about 200 feet. Some may have solved the first four clues, but I am not certain.


        • No Seeker.
          You said: “Its not a matter of thinking, it’s a matter of trying”

          How could it not be a matter of thinking? Were you thinking when you typed that?

        • So I got it backwards, Jake… If ya like you can look up the correct wording on; It’s in the media section on this blog and post the obvious mistake instead of saying; *Now you say something really dumb again that contradicts what Fenn said Seeker.*

          I’ve typed these comment’s out in just about every post i present, supplied the original place for which the comments came from… Searchers should know by now to double check anything another says. ALL should do their own homework.

          Although I’m curious as to why you only mention me in the whining and complaining. I dare you to read this thread, alone, from top to bottom and not find typos, punctuation problems, and yes something stated that was inadvertently backwards or a word left out here and there… etc.

          If you’re going to play *Chief Editor* ya might as well go all the way, right?
          OR are ya just trying to see how far you can push, for some personal reason?

          It’s a damn chat-room… not an college entry entrance exam.

          • Thanks,
            I finally comprehended what you said and glad you got the point.

            If you did your homework (as you state we all should do) and read what you wrote as well as fact check what you state here using this sites quotes from Fenn, you would do a lot better and be more helpful to others in a more accurate way OK *Chief English Hack*

            Lucy said good night.

      • Aaron, my point was simple: clues #1 and 2 are start point, direction and the distance of driving but #3 (PIBOTHB) is stop point i.e. parking lot where you start BOTG. If you have solved #1 and 2 but not #3 you can stop an any parking lot along CD driving including correct one (the hoB) because you don’t know exact distance of driving. NFBTFBW can be 10. 15 or more miles so there are tens parking lots. Forrest never said about searchers that were 1-2 miles close to TC. Maybe because at this distance there were hundreds of them. They just passed right parking lot. But some of them accidentally stopped at right one, started BOTG around it and got very close to TC (200-500 feet). Forrest called their BOTG the aberrations because they stopped there without solving the hoB. If they had hoB solved they will search more hard and find both the blaze and TC.
        Sure, there are many explanations why 200-500 feet searchers go right past the treasure chest. IMO that simplest one that they never know that they stopped exactly below of the hoB. One mile radius walking around this point can easy bring them within 200-500 feet around TC.

        • Andy, look at what are saying here. Searchers have gotten the first two clues right, then drove up to 10 or 15 miles and parked at the right parking lot, purely by accident, not knowing where they are, and then somehow wonder by within 200 feet of the chest? The odds of this scenario playing out seem very slim. If it helps with peoples confirmation bias then by all means go with it.

          Let’s examine this quote:

          Are there signs that people are getting closer to solving your puzzle? How many clues have people solved now?
          Searchers have come within about 200 feet. Some may have solved the first four clues, but I am not certain.

          He said SOME may have, not all. In order for your scenario to happen then would he just say “They may have figured out the first floor clues”? That is unless of course you have PIBTHOB as the second clue.

        • OK Andy, I see where you are going with this theory. I’ve only ever had one WWWHs, but there are many paths, or trails that could that continue to land me at the same HOB. FF says (paraphrase) if I told you HOB, you’d walk right to the chest. Is the one constant HOB?

        • Unfortunately we only know exactly what is clue #1 – WWWH.
          Second stanza can have up to 2-3 more clues but entire clue number is not 2.
          I always think that this Forrest phrase is very strange: “Some may have solved the first four clues, but I am not certain” Why he is sure about first 2 clues solved by some searchers but not certain clues #3-4?
          Maybe because Forrest knows that only the solving #3 and 4 bring you within 200 feet from TC? But at the same time he knows that searchers that were in such close proximity solved only clues #1-2. Question is how they come within about 200 feet? Forrest said it was an aberration i.e. something different from case if they come there via solving clues #3-4. IMO, but accidental stop at parking lot that is exactly below the hoB is an aberration event. Moreover, these searchers even didn’t know that they got clues #1-2 right and most likely that they never returned to this area again.

        • Hi MJ,

          in my solution the hoB is the one and constant. But I will know that it is real hoB from the poem only after I found TC.
          IMO, but other clues after the hoB can be solved only during BOTG. I’m not sure that the blaze is the last clue in the poem. Still have time before next summer to think about it.

        • Andy S.

          Those 3 or 4 clue solves that Forrest is not sure of might be a couple who have mention, most likely in a email, to Forrest 4 places or more in the area Forrest hid indulgence. Those places just happen to match clue solves but they did not specify those places as actual clue solves. Making it unclear to Forrest. Plus those places might not be answers to 1, 2, 3, or 4 then could be 1, 2, 7, 8 or even different all together. He did say 3 or 4, not which 3 or 4.

          This is my thoughts.


  7. Seeker,

    You mentioned above, “IF you take the reverse engineering Q&A to say; we can find hoB… why do we need WWsH, CD, NF, BTFTW?”s This reverse engineering response from ff, I fully believe was a sarcastic response, especially for those that have tried reverse engineering starting from the blaze. IMO for those that take what ff said about reverse engineering from hoB to find WWWsH as literally that you can start with hoB is in my mind absurd.

    Your correct as well as ff has said, to nail down the first clue and each clue is in consecutive order. What I disagree with you, is that the stomping method has a flaw. There is no flaw in stomping out the clues, so long as you nailed down the very first clue and started there. What is flawed are the searchers that think they can start at hoB and then reverse engineer to find the first clue.

    The main issue is some searchers can’t tell the difference between sarcasm and metaphors and some searchers take ff and twist those statements to fit their own line of thought. That of course is IMO after lurking the threads here and elsewhere for a long time.

    Please excuse me if by chance for disagreements with IMO

  8. That’s exactly it Aaron. Park at the first clue, the junction between the first and second, because there is no other way. To drive by the first clue to get to later clues is just not possible, IMO. You will run into conflicting ATF’s, and run the risk of skipping clues, and not needing early clues, it just makes no sense. Of course, 1000 years from now, people may have their own “jet-packs” and could just skip everything and go right to the spot. Unless there are no motorized vehicles allowed passed the first clue. I’m sure f has thought of that.

    • You brought up a good point that this method seems to be the one that checks off all of the ATF’s without a doubt. Other methods require some wiggle room on the ATF’s.

      Can’t wait to get my jet-pack. Although since I believe the treasure is in YS I probably won’t be allowed to use it there 🙁

  9. “I’m brand new to the Chase, but I just wanted to say I am so eggscited. When I saw an article about the Chase I started scrambling for answers immediately. I must have read the poem a dozen times by now. I thought I would have it cracked by now. I’m currently hatching a few new ideas and hope to have it solved soon”.

    — Robert “Chick” N. Little

  10. Well, I finally figured out how a young kid might solve Listen good…L- isten could be
    Ellisten, Montana – not fat from Treasure Mountain (, Lewis & Clark county. No trails there, but some old and new mining treasures.

    • IMO, Elliston is an unlikely place for Fenn to place his treasure, but the fishing along the little Blackfoot River is good, and there’s a YMCA day camp there (YMCA connection to Marvin, sr.)

    • There is a Treasure Mountain about 7 miles from Libby, MT, and it is 195 miles from Elliston, MT. Is that the one you were talking about ? Also, there are 3 of them in Colorado. The “kid” connection could be:
      Ask a kid about a treasure in the mountains, and they might think of the computer game for kids, “Treasure Mountain”. This, if correct, qualifies as “big picture” thinking. You would narrow your wwwh possibilities to things near one of the “Treasure” mountains in the Rockies. Also, “treasure” is a word in the first stanza.
      I have thought for a while now that some word or words in the first stanza will help pinpoint the first clue, in the second stanza.

  11. It looks to me like the large photos (at least 4 of them) at the top of these blog pages are hinting, related to the location of the treasure. I’ll take all of it as confirmation of a good solve.
    As always, IMO.

      • One photo of part of a lake.
        A photo of part of a different lake.
        A photo of part of a canyon.
        A different photo of part of some canyon.

    • Tall,

      If that were the case, but don’t you think Dal would have the treasure long ago? Dal put them there. 🙂

      • A hint, by itself, may not help solve any clue. But may tend to confirm a
        successful solve of a clue. Good luck to Dal and everyone else. All IMO.

      • I’ve always suspected IMO “Goofy old guy” was Forrest. Some of the header photos were taken from an airplane.

    • I believe the pictures of the books for sale on the top of the main page have the greatest hints and will get you close, the single star on the border, what’s in Forrest’s hand, the way the book lies open. This combined by finding an arrowhead that Forrest has already found (tarry scant with marvel gaze). There will be pinion nuts, million if not a trillion of cobblestones to look at, but find that arrowhead. That arrowhead if shown to Forrest should be the key. Imo-pinion

    • Tall Andrew… Dal has explained in the past that the photos at the top of the page were taken and donated here by Goofy. Some of them are not even in the search zone.

  12. Several things to comment on based on several posts.
    1) I cancelled my botg this week due to the weather. Probably waiting for Spring now.
    2) Forrest seems to clearly differentiate between clues, and the places the clues refer to. Following the clues seems to be required. Following the locations the clues refer to may not be required. I believe Forrest was on foot making 2 trips back to his car when he hid the treasure and he did not park at WWWH.
    3) I always interpreted that the 500ft comment shifted to 200ft after Forrest verified the searcher location to the treasure location at a later time. I am not sure of this, since I am not aware of separate 500ft and 200ft searcher confirmations.
    4) Regardless of what clue number that HoB is listed in, identifying HoB is not the clue. Putting in below HoB is the clue. Going to HoB instead of putting in below HoB could be the action causing walking on by.

    • #1 hate u cancelled ur trip. snow will come but melt quickly for Sept, Oct has some good weather but bring hunters orange.
      #2 exactly right
      #3 immaterial
      #4 exactly right

      • Emmet, rain, thunderstorms and wind were in play. I did not want to deal with this and the mud that may come into play. I listen to JDA to stay safe.

        The distance to the treasure from possible searchers may play a role. If your potential treasure location does not have a viable and explainable way for searchers to accomplish this, your potential location may come into question. Also, keep in mind, Forrest was able to determine exactly where searchers were from what they told him. I do not believe coordinates were involved. Therefore there must be some specific landmark location identified by the searchers, and this would be within 200ft of the treasure. Maybe this would classify as potential confirmation.

  13. yea but who wants to stay at home maybe he’s just saying do something positive to be remembered.es. is this where to start/

  14. Ok some of the discussions here have gotten beyond be.

    Is wwwh needed if you have hoB solved?

    Yes, because if you go to where hoB is you could see two possiblely three directions that could fit the canyon down clue. WWWH is the place that starts you on the correct trail for the canyon down clue solve. The “put in” point is actually down that canyon trail about a mile and quarter from hoB. I have talked about the elevation of the location place of hoB, it’s higher then wwwh and the canyon down trail. Thus at the put in place, in proximity of npuyc, it is actually “below” in elavation of hoB’s location. This is probably why searchers got the first two clues right and went by the others, by not understanding the “where’s” for this clue “put in below the home of Brown” are. They had another hoB location further down that canyon down trail and disregarded the “put in trail” (off beaten trail) on the left side curving up and in off the main trail, as they walked by it. Most likely those searchers were looking for a area that had a put in spot and a hoB place that were in very close proximity, and she definitely did.

    So you need to start at wwwh, but don’t wear blinders, look around before you take the canyon down you just might see the location of hoB up above you.

    As always this is food for thought, but it can make sense if you think about it.

    Good luck,

    • Burr,
      You said,
      “WWWH is the place that starts you on the correct trail for the canyon down clue solve. The “put in” point is actually down that canyon trail about a mile and quarter from hoB.”

      How do you reconcile the clue, “Not far, but too far to walk.” ? A mile and a quarter is certainly not too far to walk. Are you using the observational “take it in” method at WWWH like some others?

      • G,

        I believe I have found the answers to 7-8 of the 9 clue solves for my search area. Not far but to far to walk, I’m looking at three factors.

        My first botg trip to my search area I had some of the clues in another area and once I got there I realized Forrest couldn’t have made it to that place because I had a problem. So on my way back towards wwwh on that canyon down main trail I came across another trail that went up and in and I decided to go into that area and not far into this area I came across npuyc creek on the right and heavy loads on the left. I was shocked with the heavy loads because I would have not thought this in the woods and of course water high was up the trail further.
        So for me how far this “put in” place is from wwwh is the distance I wrote.
        Second reason is thinking of Forrest walking with a 20 lb backpack or bag I believe it would be a struggle at 79-80 yrs of age to go to much farther. Third, Forrest did say he hid the chest in one afternoon and made two trips, so the distance is pretty close imo, plus going up in altitude from the put in place to water high was a little bit tiring for me but I’m a flatlander.

        Hope this kind of answers your question.

        Good luck,

        • Hi Bur;

          Twice you have described your little trail this way, “I came across another trail that went up and in.” Can you tell me what you mean by “in”? Up and to the right? or Up and to the left? or Up and in (to) a rocky area or some other land feature. I can’t see in my mind’s eye what you mean.

          Thanks in advance for clearing this up for me. JDA

          • Hey JDA,

            Ok at the put in point the trail goes up and curves to the left and at this curve you can no longer see the main trail. At this curve the opening is maybe 25 foot wide. Also at the curve you have the npuyc creek on your right. This trail moves up and into a bigger area kind of surrounded by tre covered slopes. As you proceed up the trail from that first curve it straightens out some and there lies heavy loads on your left side. Then the trail curves left again and opens up even more. and then the trail curves right going up to water high. Standing at water high you can now see this whole area and the area of the canyon down trail going back towards wwwh. Also there is tree covered peaks all around following a beautiful rushing river.

            JDA not sure if this explains “in” for you but that trail goes to a unseen area from the main canyon down trail. You wouldn’t know this place was there if you didn’t put in at that off beaten trail.


        • But,
          Unless I am misunderstanding your explanation, it does not answer my question.

          Conventional wisdom about the clues gives us 2 main thought processes, either “too far to walk” means you take a car or other form of transportation (stomping) “take in the canyon down”, or you look only “take in the canyon down”. So are you saying with your solve that you park at WWWH, look at the canyon, then from there walk to HoB? Why would we need to look at the canyon down further than we can walk?

          • G,

            Yes you can park near wwwh and once your at the place wwwh you can see a trail that goes down the canyon, but only see the trail for a distance about 400′ then it curves some. This trail cannot be seen in it’s total length do to all the curves it has. And by the way you don’t go to “home of Brown”, you pass under it as you take the canyon down. Also you do not drive down the “canyon down” to the put in place, you walk, hike, might even use a mountain bike, but that can only be “ridden” on the main trail. Guess you could push it up the put in trail all the way up to water high if you had a chest strapped to it. LOL

            Again hope this explained better.


  15. Aaron and others…I’ve mentioned previously that I believe the coffee cup covering the salegirls’ face is possibly an illustration of the Yellowstone Caldera. When you study the YNP park service map (big picture?) the caldera is clearly shaded allowing you to see the “edges” or precise outline of the roughly circular “warm water vessel”. Just a thought. Could be any caldera, for that matter.

  16. Bur,
    How can you “Take the canyon down” at that point (WWWH) when the poem says “it is too far to walk”? Shouldn’t there be another way OTHER than walking because the clues tell you it is too far to do so.

    • IMO TFTW doesn’t necessarily mean drive and takes a little imagination to figure out. That is if I am right, and I could be wrong.

      • Does anyone know is FF says there are no red herrings At ALL? I do remember him saying (paraphrasing) that there are no red herrings in the poem. Does that statement include the book? Could there be red herrings in any of the books? Thank you!

        • MJ;

          I have “Chasing words of Forrest Fenn” – no responses for “Red Herring”
          I searched http://www.tarryscant.com – no responses.
          Type in red herring in box below Dal’s picture and you get several responses, but all people saying, I know Forrest said, no red herrings” but no sources. Others use red herring, but not referencing Forrest.

          Good luck – Maybe Zap can help – I have exhausted my resources – JDA

          • Thank you, JDA. my efforts also produced nill. I feel pretty strongly that that whole the poem may not contain red herrings, TTOTC does. It is a treasure hunt after all!!!

  17. On the road again after three days visiting with Forrest.

    We have some new video interviews we will be sharing. There was also a crew there from Voice of America video taping an interview with him that is supposed to air in late September. They also followed Sacha and Mark around on searches in NM.

    I don’t expect to be home where I can prepare the videos for the blog for at least a week…and it will take me additional time to get at them after I get home…It’s been raining on the island and the grass will need mowing…chores before fun…

    Heading up to Yellowstone area now…will take a few days to land there…Taking the scenic route. Heading to Capital Reef Nat’l Park first. Never been there. But I love the drive along the bicentennial Hwy.

    All is good…

    So far, so good…no new deer implants on Ezy…2,100 miles and counting on the trip so far…

  18. I moderated a number of comments to oblivion today…
    Infractions included:
    No references for Forrest quotes…
    Topic would be better placed on another page…
    Stating something as fact that is not…
    Asking for money for a clue someone believes they have solved….

    If the subject is WWWH…there is a page for that…
    If the subject is the blaze…there is a page for that…

    • I am absolutely looking forward to the videos as I am sure we all are.

      I hope is fairing well.

  19. Excellent. new content coming. I am currently on vacation. I was planning my first
    BOTG . would have been last week but will let it ride for now. Much more to learn.
    Maybe next year. Sounds like someone is heading for the huckleberry milkshake stand.
    One of these days I will have an x on a map. Hopefully. Much more to learn.
    Be patient and go with confidence. Happy Hunting.

  20. Happy trails to those fortunate enough to be outdoors enjoying nature’s beauty & searching.

    Gravity & Water have taken the lives of searchers who ignored safety.
    Bears are single minded in the fall..eat.

    Dal is a great example of how to do outdoor safety the right way! Looking forward to hearing from all who are searching.

  21. I am guessing that this has been mentioned before, but I will repeat it anyway… People have rightfully (in my opinion) assumed that Mr. Fenn would not put the treasure on private property, but that does not mean that conditions may not have changed since he hid his treasure. Once open access may now be blocked by newly erected fences. New, or even old land owners may have added barriers that Fenn never could foresee. I actually suspect this…

    • Ya, That would have been real smart by Fenn.
      He would have never seen that in the future.
      When you trespass on someone else’s property, you better be prepared to face the consequences including being shot at or death.

      If it was 100 years down the road, I would think of this possibility but now I think it’s very foolish to think this way.

      • Yeah Jake, I remember Forrest telling me the possibility of being shot if on private property. So he is very aware of that.

  22. 9/16/15 on Richard Eeds show: ff partial quote: “…. There are a few getting close.”

    this is referring to figuring out the clues. that is four years ago + 2 days… that says a lot about what “close” will get you 🙂

    • And, just a year later, FF aswered Six Questions With Forrest Fenn
      “3Q) It seems I ask it every year during these Six Questions, but it is such a curiosity that I have to do so again. Do you feel anyone is getting closer? Do you feel you will get to congratulate the finder of your treasure within the next few years, or do you have a sense it will remain hidden for many more? Can you say?”

      “Searchers speak to me about their search places only in generalities. I don’t know that anyone has been closer to the treasure than about 200’.” (http://mysteriouswritings.com/six-questions-with-forrest-fenn-over-five-years-of-the-thrill-of-the-chase/)

      Personally, I think that at least the last couple of clues, if not more than a couple are contained in that last 200 feet. So being 200 feet doesn’t really mean you have solved the poem IMO

  23. Random word definition I have just learned. Maybe it would benefit one of you. Of course FF told us that he used to shoot Meadowlarks for supper, and if he couldn’t get enough of them, he would bring home a Scissortail. If I understand it correctly, a Scissortail is a type of Swallow. My current study of the poem is focused on geography. As it turns out, a gulch is a type of geographical feature. Gulch means Swallow. Just tossing this out in case it helps anyone.

    • IMO the important part of the bird story is that his gun
      didn’t shoot straight. At some point in the journey
      I believe you have to make that adjustment, either left or right,
      he doesn’t actually say, or you go right on by the sweet spot.

    • A scissortail (scissor-tailed flycatcher) is definitely not a type of swallow (nor vice versa), Flutterby, so *meadowlark* doesn’t lead to *gulch* by that route, if any.

      • I don’t know how I got this info confused J A. Thanks for pointing this out. I was reading about a type of swallow that has a scissor-like tail and I guess I got them confused with a Scissortail. This doesn’t apply to my solve in any way. I had just thought I would pass it on, but should have double checked what I was reading before passing it on.

  24. I’m fairly certain this post is going to ruffle a few feathers. That is ok with me. I think that nearly everyone has been reading the poem wrong, and not only that, but I think TTOTC has been read wrong also. Whether I’m right or wrong, will only be proven if I can find the TC. I’m getting there I think.

    I suspect that Forrest’s desire to “have my bones rest forever, in silent repose, beside the treaure chest” (TTOTC, p 143), is not saying what we all have believed it is saying. In other words, I’m not sure that FF’s physical body was ever going to die beside the TC. I can’t tell you what makes me think this. But, I can say that I have re-read TTOTC at least six times over the past week and have arrived at this possibility. I have also re-read every quote I’ve ever seen from FF regarding the chase. Every single one of them in my opinion, supports my alternate reading of TTOTC and the poem. And, while I’m ruffling feathers, let me toss out one more thing that I feel certain of.

    It really bothered me when I first studied the poem, that it doesn’t have a title. I wondered, if possibly it’s title was the same title of the book, TTOTC. But, I don’t think so. My current reading of the book and the poem provide a logical reason to why the book has a title but the poem does not.

    Lets look at p 129, TTOTC. “why not let others come searching for some of it (the treasure) while I”m still here, and maybe continue looking for it after I’m gone?” So, if the goal was originally to let others come looking for the TC while Forrest was still alive, and the word, “maybe” is inserted in “maybe continue looking for it after I’m gone?”, then it sounds like there was a reasonable chance somebody might find it while “I am still alive”. (TTOTC, p 129)

    p 138 of TTOTC offers the quote, “It doesn’t matter who you are, it only matters who they think you are.” So who really is “speaking” in the telling of the poem or the book TTOTC? I know most think it is FF. I don’t think it is. I mean, the stories are his, but IMO they are the stories of something else also.

    All IMO

      • Yes Yellowdog. That is exactly what I am saying. Not that FF is not sharing stories of his own life. He is. But, he chooses to highlight details in his own life stories which coincidentally are a perfect fit to the secondary point of view. If this were not true, then at least some of the ATFs would not fit. But, they do. FF is a master at language. He carefully chooses words to describe his own life, when in fact those same words have alternate meanings which precisely describe something from a secondary point of view. And, when you can see it, it is fascinating. Of course, if you don’t understand the secondary point of view, then FF is just sharing some nice memories of his own. And that, is why nobody yet has found the TC. Due to the dual meanings of words, a person can arrive at the correct general location and have no idea why it is the correct general location. IMO

    • You didn’t ruffle my feathers – I ducked ahead of time cuz I thot I saw “it” coming.
      I tend to agree with you Flutterby……

    • Flutterby – your discussion of titles made me think of the statement we have all prob said at one time or other….. FINDERS KEEPERS, LOSERS WEEPERS.

  25. In West Yellowstone the next couple of days. Weather cold and wet. Good for hiking. Bad for making shadow figures. I have a couple of new ideas to explore…slight modifications really…hoping they lead to a blaze…But maybe I need to grow an imagination before I can find a blaze…

    • Good luck Dal and keep us updated. This goes with out saying but, Enjoy the little things out there. That’s what it’s about

    • I don’t think you need an imagination for the blaze. The imagination is needed to see the perspective the poem is written from. That is why a child can find it. Children play pretend. Remember p 38 TTOTC where FF asked for Strawberry Shortcake and the dessert his mother made with home-made bread and strawberry preserves tasted just like what he imagined. I believe that if you can see what the poem is about, by applying enough imagination to see the perspective from which the poem and book are written, then logic kicks in. After that, no more imagination required. Just some common sense, logic and basic knowlege. I believe the blaze is a concept or idea. That is why it cannot be seen on google earth. Google earth cant see into your heart or your mind. But, you can see there, and once you do, you know how to follow that idea/concept because it is so basic and simple that anyone who can figure it out can follow it. IMO

      • Hi flutterby,
        Who says that the blaze cannot be seen on GE? It it not an idea or a concept. It is a physical, well known geographical feature with a name associated with it also, IMO. If you can’t find the blaze before you’re on your BOTG, you’re not going to find it ever. Good luck with your idea.
        — MajinKing

        • Sorry MK;

          I totally disagree. IMO the blaze can Not be seen on GE – It is NOT a well known geographical feature, and there is no name associated with it. It is a “thing” and therefore can be named, but it has no name associate3d with it – nothing like Brown Mountain.

          One must know what they are looking for, but will not know for sure until it is seen. Knowing what I will be looking for, I do expect to find it, and Indulgence in the not too distant future. ALL IMHO – JDA

          • Good luck JDA,
            I hope you’re going to find what you’re looking for, but you won’t be able to find the TC close by. Just remember what Fenn was refering to when he said “why didn’t I think about that?” after someone finds the TC.
            — MajinKing

          • Hi JDA,
            As I posted several times before, you cannot find the hoB on GE, but the blaze can be found on GE. I think. On this matter you and I have an exactly opposite idea about finding the locations on GE.
            — MajinKing

          • Hi randawg,
            No, the blaze is NOT the last clue, IMO. Even when you’re out there on your BOTG, you won’t find it easily if you’re not WISE according to the poem, I’m pretty sure of that. But if you’re confident about your solve as I am, you will be able to find it and clearly see it on GE.
            — MajinKing

          • Sorry MK, I’m with JDA and randawg on this one. You can find the blaze on GE but not HoB? So with that logic do you even need the poem or are you just going straight to the blaze and calling it good? Also IMO the blaze is 100% the last clue. “If you’ve been wise and found the blaze, look quickly down your quest to cease.” Pretty straight forward there. Find the blaze, look down, boom treasure chest. The clues start with “Begin it where…” and ends at “…your quest to cease.” IMO naturally. You’re not going to able to find the blaze until you are BoTG and follow all the clues consecutively.

          • Hi T-bone,
            I posted several times about this, but you CANNOT directly go to the blaze. You have to start from the WWH everytime you want to go to the hidey spot to retrieve the TC. There is no short cuts in this game. You have to pass by one location to the next from the first (WWH) to the last. You cannot skip the intermediate locations physically, IMO. And consecutively.
            — MajinKing

        • I agree MajinKing. “If you can’t find the blaze before you’re on your BOTG, you’re not going to find it ever”.

      • It’s nice to see the pluralism of solutions for the blaze and the hoB. We don’t know 100% that the blaze is the last clue but if it is really last one GE will be useless.
        I prefer JDA and Flutterby hypothesis that the blaze is a concept or idea i.e. searcher should be within 12 feet or less from the blaze to recognise this object as real blaze. However, MajinKing hypothesis can be also correct if the blaze is part of some big geological formation that is visible on GE. All searchers are confident about their solutions and will always reject other solutions. It’s good because it increase the probability of TC discovery in nearest future (during next 5-10 years).

        • Andy S.

          I am not sure that I ever said that the blaze is a concept or idea, and that the searcher must be within 12′ to recognize it.

          Here is what I believe:
          1) The blaze is a physical object.
          2) It can not be seen on GE, or if seen, not recognizable.
          3) If you know what to look for, probably can be seen from 25 – 50′ away.
          4) Will ONLY be recognized as the blaze if you know what you are actually looking at. Other will pass it by, and may only comment on its uniqueness.
          5) Once the blaze is found, it will indicate where Indulgence is located, but Indulgence will NOT be at the base of the blaze. – JMHO – JDA

          • Hi JDA,

            my mistake, it will be better to say that searcher should have a concept/idea of the blaze in his/her mind before BOTG. To be wise in this case is equal to have multiple concepts/ideas of the blaze.
            I agree with your #1-4 statements but still sceptical about #5.
            If you’ve been wise and found the blaze,
            Look quickly down, your quest to cease,
            But tarry scant with marvel gaze,
            Just take the chest and go in peace.

            it can be true if the blaze is not last clue i.e. LQD, YQTC and BTSWMG are the last ones. If indulgence is “sepulchered” NOT at the base of the blaze the next clue LQD should be some action – maybe like you have suggested before the searcher should use a flashlight and look inside of deep crevices around the blaze base.
            If LQD was successful BTSWMG is not a clue but just description of final scene when your flashlight visualise TC in some dark deep crevice (IMO).

          • Hi JDA,
            You’re right that the TC is not at the base of the blaze, but you also cannot physically get to the blaze. And you’re right that the blaze is not the last clue, but lastly you have to be BRAVE to get your hands on the TC. Do you think you will be brave enough when that moment comes?
            – MajinKing

        • Not only do I think the blaze cannot be found on GE, but I believe that we can make a case that many of the clues can only be found BOTG. Is the reason that the chest still hasn’t been found because poem is just extremely difficult? Or could it be that not enough people will go BOTG with only the first few clues. Making a trip that can cost around $1,000, for some of us, based on only knowing the solution to the first few clues doesn’t make a lot of sense on the surface. So what could be happening here is people determine a few clues in the correct area, and cannot find any more clues for that location from their armchair and move on to a different spot, hoping to find more answers on Google Earth. Because the clues sound very vague and they are able to fit them all into false locations. They are 100% confident that they are right not only based on the clues but some jar of spice that FF talked about told them so.
          “You have to learn WHERE the first clue is. They get progressively easier after you discover WHERE the first clue is.” f – EIS Radio 8/8/2013 http://www.eisradio.org/item/003/
          They get progressively easier after the first clue right? If people have found the starting point and they get easier after that then why has the chest not been found?
          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 – Featured question with Forrest on Mysterious Writings 5/13/2015 http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-question-with-forrest-first-clue-importance/

          This tells me we shouldn’t even be thinking about looking for blazes. It also points us back to the importance of the first clue. This quote though really cements this thought process for me even more:

          “…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 ” – Featured question with Forrest on Mysterious Writings 3/25/2015 http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-question-with-forrest-first-clue/
          Again we are told to identify the starting point, but also not to be preoccupied with later clues. If these later clues can be found on the map or GE, shouldn’t we be preoccupied with them? We are told not to so I’m guessing the answer is no. This quote really destroys those theories that we should find a spot WWWH and use later clues to confirm the location.
          Here is another gem from mysterious writings:

          “Searchers have routinely revealed where they think the treasure was hidden and walked me through the process that took them on that course. That’s how I know a few have identified the first two clues. Although others were at the starting point I think their arrival was an aberration and they were oblivious to its connection with the poem. Playing a hunch is not worth much in the search and those who start out by looking for the blaze, are wasting their time.f” – 7/1/2014 http://mysteriouswritings.com/questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase/

          The first two clue solvers were in the right location, oblivious as to why exactly and may have found later clues while searching at home before BOTG. Of course these clues proved to be false because they left the poem. This also again points out that we should forget about looking for the blaze IMO. So why does FF think their arrival at the starting point was aberration? Personally I believe that the first stanza helps us know why we should be in the starting point location. It is possible that the first two clue solvers didn’t figure that out and only looked for later clues from their armchair.

          From the flap on the map in TFTW: “I warned that the path would not be direct for those who had no certainty of the location beforehand, but sure for the one who did.”

          Do we need all the clues before BOTG, or just the path that we can find them on? For me, this quote cements it:
          “If a person reads the poem over and over…and are able to decipher the first few clues in the poem, they can find the treasure chest. It may not be easy, but it certainly isn’t impossible. I could go right straight to it.” – interview at Collected Works bookstore 1-/23/2013 https://youtu.be/EsTdZRwnydw

          We are told straight out that all we need to do is decipher the first few clues and we can find the chest. Why sit at home for hours day after day looking for later clues? Find the first few and go get it.

          Lastly we have another quote from Mysterious Writings on 2/4/2017:
          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 clues and them marry them to a place on a map. He doesn’t say all of the clues, he just says clues. Then he follows it with “the longer one thinks about the search the more they complicate the problem.” http://mysteriouswritings.com/six-questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase-treasure-hunt/

          Is this because looking for later clues on a map is over complicating it and over thinking it?

          I have been BOTG enough to know that things look vastly different on site then they do on GE. Rocks, inclines, creeks, and even mud that you cannot see very well on GE can be vastly different on site. If Geography is important in solving this thing then we cannot rely on GE to show us all of what we should expect to see on site. If we should have BOTG at the location of the first few clues, and I for one believe we should, then why do we need to see remaining clues from home? I don’t believe that the people that came within 200 feet of the chest accidently drove to the correct parking lot below the home of Brown and happened to walk right past it from there.

          So how do we be sure enough to make that trip? IMO it is by solving and understanding the first stanza, and how it relates to the rest of the poem.

          • If you believe “the correct parking lot” is “below the home of
            Brown”, good luck in your quest.

          • Tall Andrew,

            Why do we need to find the correct parking lot? Can I not just park anywhere I like and go in piece once I have the chest?

            And, am I just crazy or is Dal’s last post utterly insane. On and on about vans, and all of this with acronyms. I’m lost…

          • Aaron, I don’t think your post got the interest it deserves. Filled with viable thoughts. I do disagree with some of it, but in general, I agree with most of it. My belief, as I’ve posted forever, is that you will find the end spot before wwwh. By looking at what you’ve posted:
            “You have to learn WHERE the first clue is.

            Although many have tried, I doubt that anyone will find the blaze before they have figured out the first clue.

            “…I cannot imagine anyone finding the treasure without first identifying the starting point,

            “I warned that the path would not be direct for those who had no certainty of the location beforehand, but sure for the one who did.”

            Do we need all the clues before BOTG, or just the path that we can find them on? For me, this quote cements it:
            “If a person reads the poem over and over…and are able to decipher the first few clues in the poem, they can find the treasure chest. It may not be easy, but it certainly isn’t impossible. I could go right straight to it.”

            All these comments point to knowing the path, to interpret the first clue, to find it, that the path will be direct. Or, that the spot will be found first, and the understanding of where to start can then be gathered.
            Add in a couple more ATF’s, especially the one about the answers to the blaze, wwwh, hoB are not given by f in any subtle way. If the answers are not totally obvious, and he says that he has not given the answers in a subtle way, then there is no answers to those things. They need to be found, interpreted, just like what he says about wwwh.
            The part I disagree with is that the first stanza is what gives the answers. I believe it is a solve of the entire poem that is needed. Solving the poem will give you that “x” on a map. The spot. Then, a starting point can be found, and so-on. A big problem I see is that searchers confuse solving the poem with solving clues. It is not the same thing. In that way of thinking, solving the clues is solving the poem, then if one clue cannot be solved, then you cannot have a solve of the poem. Now add in the ATF that f has not given the answer to at least the two clues we do know of, that puts the method of solving clues to rest. You cannot have a good solve if your idea is that you solved the clues and that is your poem solve.
            The poem can be solved, and in solving it, will reveal what is needed to do. Not all clues can be solved from home, he has said that repeatedly, paraphrasing, will I know all the clues before we drive out to find the chest? Answer, probably not.
            This agrees with your post Aaron, that you will not know the answers to some of the questions, and in that case, cannot have a complete solve. A clue to solve the next clue to solve the next clue method is absurd with these statements by f. And impossible. It leads to the worst piece of info f gave to all of us was to tell us that there were 9 clues. It opens up tons of rabbit holes. Now if he didn’t offer that little piece of info, would searchers be looking for a certain number of clues? Of course not, and that is what is needed to solve the poem. To not think of clues, and try to solve the poem. But, of course, this info we try to convey will just fall on deaf ears. Searchers will just disregard the things that don’t complement their solves. Basically just ignore f’s words. That’s fine with me, actually. I would rather have everyone disagree with me rather then agree, but in the face of the obvious, the things f has said, it just seems so obvious. That, I believe is why your post didn’t get the recognition that it deserved, or some foolish comment, because searchers just can’t see the obvious. Good post Aaron.

          • Thanks Poison, every one has their process and we do not know which one will be right for sure till the TC is found. I think it is wise to always be open minded to different process, but we can use some ATF’s to help reconcile how some can make more sense than others.

        • Brian u;

          The poem WILL lead you there, IF you know what to look for.

          Let’s say that the blaze is a rock formation that looks like the head of an owl, if seen from the right angle. If you had not understood, “If you’ve been WISE…” you night have walked right by this rock formation and never known it was the blaze.

          So, YES, the poem WILL lead you to the blaze, but only if you have been WISE enough to recognize it for what it is – the blaze. Make sense? JDA

    • Good luck Dal,
      BTW, Cynthia hasn’t posted on her blog in over week since she wrote about her arrival in the Yellowstone area. Could you check on her and see if she’s been preoccupied by taking a Scrooge McDuck type swim in a 10″ by 10″ pool?

      • JW-
        Cynthia is fine. She camps and a lot of the countryside up around the park has no cell service. Cynthia got home last night. I am certain she is writing her story today and you’ll see it soon.

    • Would you be interested in checking out a possible solve in the West Yellowstone area? If so please e-mail.

    • I haven’t been on there in quite some time so I am not sure what all has changed. Shame on me lol

    • If glass is a viscous liquid, and the olive jar is in
      the chest, is the chest “wet” according to the
      laws of physics?

      • Alas, I am mistaken. Apparently glass is not
        a viscous liquid but instead is an amorphous
        solid. Go figure. Pitch tar on the other hand,
        after a 60 year experiment waiting for a drip
        to fall, is now a liquid. Things change.
        Tarry scant. Snow coming to Mt. soon.
        Don’t be scared, be prepared. Keep searching.

      • May I suggest you do a little “technical” research on what it means to wet something? Think in terms of water sitting on a plate of solid paraffin. The water doesn’t wet the paraffin.

        In similar fashion, the olive jar doesn’t wet the chest. But it’s good that you are thinking.

        Do you remember that it was February when FF indicated that the TC is wet? Wetness of the TC is a rabbit hole. As always, IMO.

    • wwwamericana, thanks for mentioning the new look at Old Santa Fe Trading Company….

      Beautiful job on your updated website Forrest!

      It’s elegant in its simplicity. Easily navigated. Textual content and photos all so enjoyable. Humorous nod to Eric Sloane at page’s end.

      Really enjoyed it.

        • Lisa, the stories are at Old Santa Fe Trading Company’s site… I just finished reading “The Mother of Indiana Jones”. I’ve listed the link for you below.


          When reading his TTOTC memoir stories at OSFTC – go to the bottom of the story and click “next” to scroll/read through the stories.

          Not all illustrations are included; and the illustration “Jumping the Milk truck” is different.

          • Lisa, Have you heard the word “provenience”? At first I assumed a typo in the story but then remembered it was ff writing and proofing…and decided it must be a word…I was pleasantly surprised to learn a provenience is a word and closely related to its sister “provenance.”

          • 42 – Thank you for the link. I can see those title choices now at the bottom of each story. I did like it better, when I could click on one of the blog story titles from the list of all of them.

            And thank you for pointing out that new word for my ever growing Chase vocabulary!

    • Fantastic!

      I really like the virtual museum (Collection) but the picture resolution could be higher (or maybe it’s my browser or my old eyes).

      The captions are entertaining and thought-provoking.

    • WWW,
      Are you talking about at the bottom with the puppy wearing an Indian feather?

      I’ve only visited it a few times but I’m pretty sure I ordered OUAW-Revised from there a few weeks ago.


  26. JDA, this is got to do with the coincidences I was referring to the other day in our chat.

    I wasn’t going to share this. I was just going to smile and believe in my second to last line on this comment. Oh well, it’s interesting, no matter what, so I’ll share.

    So how does searching, emailing and a scrapbook come into play as some interesting coincidences.

    Two search seasons ago as I enter my search area it was early morning just as the sunlight broke the sky I was hiking pass my heavy loads solve heading to a boulder area up high along my npuyc creek. The trail lead me by what I thought was somebody camping in the woods so I was quite not to disturb them, and I didn’t want them asking what I was doing as I passed by. So I proceeded up and searched most of the morning in my, thought to be, blaze area. After not finding Forrest’s secret spot I descended back towards the area of that camp. Deciding I would drop in on the camp and have a quick look around to see if anything in the area “stood out” that I might want to search. Well as I approached I shouted to the camp asking if anyone was there, before I entered. No response so I approach slowly. No one was there at this time but I could see tarps setup on tree branches and a make shift of rocks and tree limb seats around a campfire pit and a couple blanket sleeping bag setups. But what caught me eye the most was all the garbage everywhere spreading out to the outside perimeters of about 60′ to 75′ from the camp. I quickly looked around a interesting boulder area in proximity to this camp then made my way out to the trail I was on. I decided to hike on up to water high when half way there, in the woods to the right of the trail I could see what looked like another camp setup. So once again I went to it’s edge and shouted if anyone was there – no answer. I proceeded up and into that camp area but it was not a camp that was in use, it was one that appeared to been abandoned and garbage was everywhere there too.
    I understand that homeless people tend to need a place and sometimes places like these that are close to where they can walk and find civilization so they can get what they need then head back to the woods to be out of sight to live. But there has to be some respect for nature and how you use and leave it. All that garbage would take a lot of time and garbage bins to cleanup those two areas.

    Ok, to get to the email part. After my search I decided to email Forrest of my adventure and at the bottom I wrote about those camps in part-

    “….guess what made me mad the most was all the garbage and debris scattered all around these camps and areas around them, just made us sick to see that our fellow human beings destroyed the natural beauty of this place……So Forrest if this is where you hid the chest and wanted your bones to rest, well you should have second thoughts now.”

    So in May of this year I went back to see if I could fined the “allusive blaze” in my search area. As I approched the area of that first camp I did not see the tarps hanging, in fact there was no sign that there was ever a camp there. So I went to the abandoned camp area and sure enough it was clean and no sign that it was a garbage dump too.
    So did Forrest have some influence in getting these areas back to their natural state or was it just a “coincidence”?

    Now I see a scrapbook and in it he talks about “garbage”…..”and it’s contents spilled all around the local periphery.”
    Forrest helped in cleaning up the garbage which lead to finding a hidden treasure. “Coincidence”?

    So now I wonder even more if Forrest helped somehow in the process of cleaning up the garbage camps or is it just that “coincidence” again?
    There is a hint or two in that scrapbook that “does not” help with solving clues, but might help with understanding where you need to be.

    Part of me wants to believe that these are not “coincidences” and that just maybe my search area has a hidden treasure to be found too.

    All is my opinion on what I have come across.
    Good luck all,

    • Hi Bur;

      Thanks for the lengthy post. When these homeless people left their “Garbage” – maybe to them, at the time it was not garbage, but rather a way of saying – “I was here” – Kinda like the old “Kilroy was here” signs back in the 40’s.

      Glad that when you went back, that it had been cleaned-up though.

      These old “Kilroy was here” markings or signs help tell other soldiers that U.S. forces had already been in a particular area. They helped “Mark the way”

      I am getting off track. Yes, it MAY be a coincidence Bur, but one never knows about these things. I will be on the look-out for “Garbage” and will be sure to do the right thing in regards to it. Thanks for the post – JDA

  27. Dal, or any TTOTC long-timers…

    Has anyone ever asked Forrest if when solving each of the nine in order, he left physical confirmations on the ground at those sites? (I’m trying to rule this idea in or out).

    It’s a logical possibility on a treasure hunt… if Forrest hasn’t ruled it out. I can’t remember any discussions related to this or anyone asking Forrest, but would love your input – if anyone remembers a related discussion ‘with Forrest’.

    • I don’t mean the blaze. I’m asking if physical evidence was left by on the ground by Forrest at any of the other clues.

      For instance: not far but too far… could be Not 4 but 24 – so if you walk 24 feet, or drive 24 miles etc. and land at the next clue, did ff leave physical evidence that you are correct?

      • If Forrest did such a thing, wouldn’t that seem a bit counter-productive? Forrest said (paraphrasing) that he created a poem with nine clues, and if followed precisely would lead one to the treasure. He didn’t say, oh, and by the way, I will let you know if you are right at each step along the way. JMO – JDA

      • I disagree JDA. It’s likely he did leave something behind. In fact, the gist of the poem, (I’ve posted before), could be the search for a bell. Third line, ” I can keep my secret where?”
        What’s his secret?
        Answer is on page 137 of the book.
        With all the talk on bells, with f being spiritual, (I don’t mean in a religious way, but a spiritual one), and with his comment, “ring the bell so I will know”, it’s very easy to speculate that the correct searcher will find a bell. The last clue, the minimum needed to find the chest, will find the chest, so ring the bell so f will know.
        It’s also likely that f would stage an area, considering that he needs everything to be exactly right and like he wants it. Also making two trips, he could handle 30lbs. pretty easily on a long hike.
        So yes, could almost count on something f has staged as a confirmation, the bell being the most likely. Not likely to find around the treasure though 42, and probably not likely anything is where a bell may be found. There won’t be any signs to that nature of anyone being there, IMO. Of course, the blaze is a whole entirely different scenario.

        • poison, I have been confused about the bells until just recently. The same geographical path that led me to my current poem solution has made sense of the bells for me. Everyone has focused on the bell when in fact the word that is more important is RING. And, that is how the poem is getting misunderstood as well. IMO

          • Can you elaborate please?
            I don’t see the connection.
            I have not focussed on any bells or ringing.

          • Jake, I can see how a “ring” can be involved with finding the bell. Part of the blaze.
            As far as the bell being part of the chase, it comes from line 3 in the poem, and page 137 of the book. That is the initial thought. It is overly confirmed by ATF’s. You can go to tarry scant and look up all ATF’s concerning bells and jars.
            I won’t go into how to arrive at where you would need to be, but, dancing with the stars could lead to the Bighorn med. wheel. That can be crossed referenced thru ATF’s. (burying 28 in all, buried 8 so far, and others). The medicine wheel forms a type of map, I think to bells, but to pinpoint locations would be difficult. I can only pinpoint 1 place.
            If you take him at his word, his secret is the burying of a bell. Or better yet, his secret = bell.
            The whole poem then tells you how to get to this bell. That would cover 8 clues. The last and final clue needed to solve to find the chest is the minimum needed in finding the chest.
            Of course, all clues when followed will find the chest, and a searcher can completely not find a bell or think of one and still find the chest, IMO. But I also think that a searcher can find the chest without ever seeing the blaze, so whatever IMO is worth. Putting an “x” on a map is the spot the bell is at, IMO.
            If you truly get into researching all the ATF’s and the cross-references from the book and poem, IMO, you can get the word “that” is key, know what the word “few” represents, will point a way to the bell, and incorporate other hints of interest. You have to make the correlation between all the info and the poem. If you don’t see the similarities, and cannot tie in the poem, then it’s just a bunch of outside info that answers some hints.
            Flutterby, as I can see how “ring” can be important, it is not as important as “bell”. If it was, the “secret” in the poem and the “secret plan” of page 137, would entail “rings”. It doesn’t, it entails “bells”. If you take the idea that there is a bell in the scope of things, this will answer what type of land the chest may be on. Part of the story on page 138. The bell that I believe could be found is the one on page 137. Also, if “ring” was more important, in the ATF with the students whom asked about does Bighorn ring any bells, his answer of, what do you mean by ringing bells, hints as to the bell is the important info, and not the ring, IMO.
            An important take-away to all this is to see how many different solves and places searchers have come up with. It may just be that searchers are confused, looking for a chest when the poem directs you to a bell. That they do not have the correct solve for the 9th clue, and thus cannot find the chest. Since all the bells are buried, maybe a searcher, when they get to their spot, might want to think about digging. Wouldn’t hurt. Could you imagine if you found a bell? If I didn’t have the right 9th clue solve, but found a bell, I would put that spot in the middle of a 200′ diameter circle, and tear that area apart, who knows. (then again, I think I have all the answers so I’m in the same boat as everyone else, the “we really have no idea boat”).

  28. Searchers in S.W. MONTANA

    Please Be BEAR AWARE!!
    Grizzly bears are in the lower elevations now, voracious, dangerous.


    2 Grizzly bear attacks on humans in the Gravelly range (Gravelly Mountains back up to Madison River country)

    Grizzly killled a horse near Buffalo Horn trail (Gallatin River, Highway 191)


    • True that. Once 30 seconds before a bear encounter I yelled out to my search partner, this squirrel is totally freaking out. Another time hiking near my house I entered the forest to see more squirrels than I’ve ever seen here. All running, chattering, and jumping about. Then the a big cat let out a scream and all was quiet. I walked out of there backwards. g

    • @Brian u — valid, relevant points. Many macho (and machette, many being female) searchers boast about toting their fire arms into the wilderness. They refuse to believe that bear spray is statistically far more effective than a bullet in stopping a charging bear. Some folks just don’t belong in the wilderness. I’m thinking the process of natural selection will cull that herd.

  29. Ended my search today. I certainly did not find it…so go forth and explore…I will have a write-up and new Forrest videos after I return home. Right now I am not certain when that will be…not for a week anyway…exploring other areas…not searching just enjoying the last days of summer in the mountains…
    And for those visiting YNP let me just say….lots of road construction inside the park with delays up to half an hour…additionally…there is much more tourist traffic this time of year than I remember in years past…so bring your patience…

    Just randomly I started counting cars that passed me while I was stopped at a road construction site…97 vehicles past me and 9 of them were Cruise America or some other brand of rented RV…nearly 10%…and if you count ALL RVs there were 32…32 vehicles out of 97 were RVs…nearly every third vehicle was an RV…

    Vans come in several different sizes and many folks are “vanning” these days…they drive and camp in vans. I counted 16 standard size vans and 8 supersized vans…like those big MB vans…
    Thats 32 vans…another third of the vehicles were vans…and the last third were cars…no motorcycles passed me while I was waiting in that line…of those cars, 6 were hybrids…
    I saw a few bicycles on the road but none passed me while I was in line.

    I have no idea what this says about the changing face of personal vacation transportation in America…or in the way I amuse myself while stalled in road construction lines…

    Next time I think I’ll count vehicle colors…

    • When i was there last month I was stuck in a 30 minute construction zone wait, probably in the same spot. They were letting way too many cars go at once and for a very long stretch of road. They were actually only working on about 20 feet of road however…

      I like the van idea. If I continue searching after next weeks search maybe I’ll buy a cheap van, gut it, and throw a bed in the back instead of paying for hotel rooms.

      • I actually thought about doing that Aaron. I actually don’t mind sleeping in a truck or van. I have a bad back and more often than not, hotel beds are just as comfortable as my car/truck seats.

    • There’s a boom in small commercial vehicle / light commercial van (Ford Transit, MB Metris, et al) sales and conversions. Popular conversion shops have six+ month wait lists. Folks buy them as a shell then add fold down beds, kitchenettes, mahogany paneling, spending twice on finish-out than the cost of the vehicle.

      But as a kid, nothing could beat sitting in the back of a station wagon with your brother getting truckers to blow their horns with the universal arm pump, or making wholly unacceptable gestures to others just because that’s what kids do. Both resulting in dad wondering what the heck he did wrong to cause the truckers to blast their horns or irate drivers to give him obscene gestures when they could finally pass. Ahhhh….the great American road trips.

      • Oh Boy… That just brought back memories of when I was four years old my parents bought an old 1950’s panel van threw a bed in the back, built a storage box on the top, and painted big flowers on the side 🙂 It was the seventies 🙂 We traveled all over the US that summer in that thang….

    • Hi Dal
      I will be in west Yellowstone next Wednesday 25th,
      I would like to meet up with you if you are still there.

    • When we did our last Yellowstone / Fenn trip in June (1 day searching, 1 week sightseeing), we also noticed that the RV portion was higher than it used to be. Most striking though was that while we encountered dozens of tour buses, NONE of the tour buses were from American-focused tour companies (Collette, Globus, Grand American, etc.). Almost all of them were Chinese, or charters carrying Chinese. (Some of these had quite beautiful paint jobs, btw!) Seemed odd that the domestics would only do July and August now. And yes, the delays between Norris and Mammoth were lonnnng.

      • The Chinese really have a corner on the market. Reminds me of playing Chinese checkers. Has anyone played that in a while?

  30. Well, shiver me timbers, I hope everyone had a treasure filled talk-like-a-pirate day!
    “Have parrot, will travel”

  31. Wow! Geography is fascinating! I’ve never liked studying it before, but since FF suggested that a comprehensive understanding of geography might help with the chase, I have immersed myself in geography. Since then, the poem has come alive for me. What previously seemed like a jumbled up bunch of non-sensical phrases actually make sense to me. I’ve previously mentioned that I believe FF is speaking from the perspective of another person/place or thing when he speaks in his books and in the poem. I believe he uses details from his own life to highlight and illustrate the geographical location where the TC is. So today I’m mulling over a tiny little detail I came across a number of times in different stories. This led me to look up a definition. This is where the Wow comes in! I know we have heard that there have been people who figured the first clues and walked right past the others. There have been numerous statements and discussion about 200 feet verses 500 feet, etc. Based upon some geographical information I’m reading, I no longer think FF is literally talking about somebody standing 200 steps from the TC or being within eyesight of it or whatever we have all imagined these phrases refer to. I think he is talking about something else entirely. This conclusion is based upon a geographical word definition I’m reading about. I think it is entirely probable that nobody has been 200 or 500 steps, paces, etc from the TC. I think Forrest is saying something else altogether. It makes so much sense with this definition! I’m just going to sit here and mull this over some more. I think mulling over words is much more productive while sitting beside a warm crackling fire, but its freaking hot here in California. So, if I haven’t resolved this before winter, I can mull on it some more then.

    • How many times has Fenn used the 200′ statement?
      Here’s one of them.

      Do you think Fenn lying or do you think the 200′ statement is cryptic involving what and how you decipher what he has said using geography word(s)?

      I think searchers were within 200′ where he recognized the pictures from his email according to what he said in this video.

        • Yes, conclusive.
          There’s always that possibility his memory may not be 100% but it’s what he remembered and I don’t see any misdirection.

      • Jake, No, I don’t think FF lied. I think he wrote the poem and his books from the perspective of a person/place or thing other than himself. The stories are stories from his own life, but he has highlighted the details that fit the geographical location where the TC is located. FF is a gifted writer. If you think everything is written from his own perspective, you will miss what he is really talking about. Kind of like the fox dressing like the hound. You really have to have an indepth understanding of RM geography to see how the stories illustrate the map. No names of places. Just simple straight forward descriptions where the words mean exactly what they say. And the quote you mentioned about flying 200 feet into the teeth of the rockies is spoken from the same perspective as the poem and books. Simple, straight forward words that mean what they say. But, what is it that they say? That is where the confusion is. IMO

        • Flutterby, how to you justify what Fenn said in the video?
          Did you watch it?
          I think you are missing what he said and how he said it.

      • “Within 200 feet” as revealed by a photo is different than as revealed by email text. In text, you’d most likely say you were on trail X, waded up creek W, enjoyed the view from ridgetop Y or circumnavigated Lake Z. Identifiable lines, points or shapes from which Forrest could tell that you must either be while there or have been while getting there within 200 feet. For a photo, though, this changes. A photo taken in the woods would rarely be identifiable as to its exact location; only with some distinctive landmark or feature in the frame could anyone tell where it was. Most of the time, a photo-only ID would need to be at least partially out in the open with both the ability to identify the landmark and simultaneously gauge distance from it.

        To take a live example, we’ve tried the trail to Coffin Lake along Watkins Creek. Assuming the treasure isn’t merely 200 feet from the trail itself, anywhere off-trail in the vicinity is hard to describe that precisely except in certain sections, e.g. where the trail enters or exits a meadow, approaches the creek or has spurs to a couple of small ponds. Of all our photos there, even though we remember the hike, many would be hard to place within 200 feet, and except near those ponds, almost none of the ones taken in the woods.

        My guess is that the 500 feet is the distance to the trail, creek or road and 200 feet is the distance from some probably-open spot where one might be tempted to take a photo due to the view.

        As always, all this is IMO.

        • camperguy – Coincidentally, during the time before you posted this, I was exploring Rumbaigh Creek and Watkins Creek via Google Earth 3D on a computer screen. I flew the Watkins Creek trail from the origin, near the shore of Hebgen Lake, all the way to the top, near the Continental Divide Trail. Did you see there is a Clark’s Lake just over the Montana-Idaho border from there? I found a ground view pic of that lake.

          I am interested in a meadow clearing, near the confluence of the ‘Y’ formed by Coffin Creek and Watkins Creek. Did you by any chance explore there? It might fit your great 500/200 ft. description.

          I can just imagine Forrest, who we know went “Looking for Lewis and Clark”, wanting to see Clark’s Lake, up close.

          • camperguy – Going uphill on that trail, the edge of the clearing is 98m or 321ft from that distinctive landmark. Change the Google Earth map to 2D to imagine the probable view of Hebgen Lake and the Madison Range beyond from that spot.

            I love maps and geography. Because I am afraid to encounter a big ‘ol Grizz on that Watkins Creek Trail!

          • We looked around that whole area at least twice. None of the landmarks were that distinctive from a BOTG perspective; the trees conceal much. On our first visit, we went all the way up to Coffin Lake. The lake was cold and tree-fall jammed, and it’s kind of a cirque lake, surrounded on 3 sides by the mountains.

            We’ve tried crossing to the east side of Watkins Creek, too [I wore waders to make it easier]. Nothing there, either but some cattle grazing along one section.

            As for views back towards Hebgen Lake, there were one or two good spots, but the views were good from closer to the trailhead, too, those rises just north of the trail.

            The trail junction area you mention has a spur going SE that links up to the Pacific Crest Trail.

            The closest lake across the top on the west side was Sheep Lake, but that ridge [from Coffin to it] is both too steep and too far to have had anything to do with the chest. Even Coffin Lake is too far; we just went there to see it since if we’re on the trail anyway, might as well take it to it’s normal end point. Clark Lake [south] is actually in Idaho, so it’s out of play.

            As for bears, we took bear bells each trip, never saw any sign of them. Fine with us.

        • Camperguy,

          That’s a solid point you explained there! The only thing I might add is if the person were taking a photo from an elevation to a lower elevation, such as a canyon or valley. If someone was following a trail or road and stopped to take a picture of the valley ahead. Maybe the road or trail has a opening in the trees to see the valley below. Remember, Forrest said the chest is not at the top of a mountain but may be close to the top (paraphrased).

          Anyway, what you said made complete sense to me.

          Happy hunting!


        • Fairly good assumption camperguy,
          We need some reference points whether a photo, trail, road, creek or body of water or whatever.

    • They flew within 200′ from it, they told he where they were landing in their personal plain. He covers that by for no reason he said he flew 200′ into the teeth of the Rockies. IMO

  32. Flutterby, you said, “Based upon some geographical information I’m reading, I no longer think FF is literally talking about somebody standing 200 steps from the TC or being within eyesight of it or whatever we have all imagined these phrases refer to. I think he is talking about something else entirely.”

    Will you kindly present the geographical definitions, and what you believe ff is actually referring to… which led you to this conclusion?

    Thank you.

    • Flutterby, I’m genuinely interested in your opinion, and not looking to debate; but rather understand. I gave up searching a perfectly solved location because I know that searchers have not walked within 200 ft of the treasure.

    • 42, It has taken me almost 4 years to get to this place where the poem is straight forward and makes sense. I believe I have 7 clues figured out. Im not giving that away. But, I will tell you that I only got here by identifying the word that is key, obtaining an in depth understanding of geography of the RMs, memorizing the poem, reviewing it daily, and reading FFs books slowly and thoughtfully. I believe at least one other person on this site understands the poem the way I do, though I believe this person is still missing four clues. I know at least three people who also have identified the same word that is key, though two of them dont know why it is key. Until very recently, I thought the chase might not be solveable. I only hoped to understand the poem. I surprised myself. I now believe it is possible to solve the poem, though I suspect it will still take some time to locate the TC. As far as I know, nobody is searching my area. All my opinion.

      • Hi Flutterby
        I can see your Flutterby has flue off again,yesterday
        as I was working ,a monarch Flutterby landed on me
        three times before going on its way.I think this will
        bring me some luck,even if it is not a swallowtail
        Flutterby ,will botg 4 days.Clint

        • Good Luck Clint. Yes, my butterfly flew away again. All my posts were ending up in Dal’s spam and I couldn’t solve the problem so I closed my WordPress account and that solved the problem. Though it does leave me without my butterfly. But, since you bring that up, I will mention something I recently have discovered. It is important to understand how FF arrived at the idea that a butterfly is really a flutterby. Yes, FF did say it came from the smallest of voices. And, if you can figure out what that means, you will be on your way to solving the poem, in my opinion.

          • Hi Flutterby
            Will I have been there for 2.5 years now
            and those little voices can be quite big at
            times.I think I have it figured out now.
            I like the last paragraph after the poem,a
            really big hint there and for water high your going to really haft to have your thinking cap for this one.looks like bad
            weather for my botg.Rain and snow
            that means MUD Clint

    • Sorry for the original errors in the above comment. I can only blame a cold and somewhat numb brain…I believe I have corrected the mistakes…

    • You may notice that I am not the only mistake prone individual…
      At the bottom of that page on Sublette’s website is a blurb about Forrest…
      and you will note that it states Forrest “grew up in the wilds of Montana…”

    • Hi Dal, I thought Forrest had already buried all of his “bells”? Cynthia has a picture up of his desk with some bells on it… (unless he intended to also keep some to fill up the extra space in his all too sparse library) looks like he is planning more trips to bury more… right next to a can of bear spray… guess where the next one is going to go. (or maybe that is anti searcher spray for his office)

    • Dal -.Still want to sleep on the floor of the McCracken Research Library for a few nights:


      Loved reading “Tee Pee Smoke” via an interlibrary loan this Summer. That “heavy load” of the horses pulling J.H. Sharp’s stagecoach up Taos Canyon was a clue for my Madison River crossing at the Barns Holes in my Baker’S Hole solve. I loved finding that historic Powell map, showing the Stagecoach crossing on the Madison around Barnes Hole #3.

        • Lisa,

          It seems as though that area you have pretty well stomped out? I have a solve in that area I’m going to check out next week. Interesting you posted that 1800s map as it’s the one I’m using for my solve.

          Would be interested in hearing your thoughts on it. If you’re at all interested.

          • James Collier – I am certainly interested, but only in the details you are willing to share here on Dal’s blog. I don’t communicate offline about my solve or those belonging to others. I just want one of us to solve this thing!

          • Okay, I can definitely do that. I’m wondering in the 10 years this has been going on, how much of the Baker’s Hole north to Madison Junction has been stomped out?

            Anyone have ideas as to which locations east towards MJ have been combed?

          • James Collier – I am not at all concerned about those who have combed the area between Madison Junction and Baker’s Hole previously. Those, like Dal, who did and who shared pictures or BOTG observations here with us have greatly helped me fine tune my solve. With each bit of new information I get new ideas for further research.

            I can’t imagine anyone “combing” those 10 river miles between Forrest’s put-in with his dinghy above the Barns Holes to Baker’S Hole in such a way that would my online or BOTG search unwarranted.

            But I wouldn’t spend time walking the mosquito infested Beaver Marsh, if I were you. I would just go straight to my ‘wiSe’ blaze at Baker’S Hole.

            All IMO.

          • I have a very specific spot that I’m interested in. Actually below Bakers Hole heading back east towards MJ. I’ll check it out Thursday of next week and share my findings to get input late Thursday night.

        • Lisa,

          I think that Powell map only goes west to long riffle (little past 7 mile hole). Look at the contours to get calibrated. Cool map, though. I may draw that route on GE for fun.

          • Heck yeah. Love real maps especially topo. The most handy if your carrying weight. Ounces equals pounds, pounds equals pain.

          • meBigGuy – No. That Powell map was drawn before Hebgen Dam was built in 1910 to create Hebgen Lake. The Madison River previously made that arc you see through the 30 mile stretch across the Madison Basin. My Baker’S Hole ‘S’ blaze is directly below the ‘M’ in the word ‘Madison’ on Powell’s map. That should help you get oriented. The former YNP boundary was waaaay West of where it is today (crossing my ‘S’ blaze like this dollar sign: $).

            You may also find this link to be helpful:


            Did you know that 30 mile Madison River stretch was called the “Burnt Hole” by trappers like Osborne Russell? A huge fire burned most of the trees. And that is how the Firehole River got its name. It wasn’t named after the thermal features in that area.

          • Lisa, I’d forgotten that piece about Burnt Hole/FireHole. Thanks! FF referred to himself as forrestfire for a number of years on the blog. I like it.

          • Actually, I am **absolutely positive** that the Powell map ends at what is now big riffle. Look at the banks just north of the river. (the steep Madison canyon walls) and compare them to 7 mile hole and 9 mile hole today. It is a perfect match. Also Mt Haynes.

            Look at geographic features North and south to verify what I am saying. For example, the fork on cougar creek is just north of the 7 mile hole.

            Again, look carefully at the northern bank contours at 7 mile hole and 9 mile hole and compare them with the Powell map at the beginning of the last big downstream bend.

            Look at the letter “I” in Madison on the powell map. It is at the top of a steep bank. Look at the 7 mile bridge on a USGS map. Pretty much the same place. That is at the end of Madison Canyon.


          • meBigGuy – Seven Mile Bridge is underneath the ‘R’ in ‘Madison River’ on Powell’s map. Look again at the geographic features on your map comparison.

            And thank you for that Library of Congress 1883 map. It’s awesome.

          • **** **** ****
            meBigGuy’s alignment of that Powell map:
            “Actually, I am **absolutely positive** that the Powell map ends at what is now big riffle. Look at the banks just north of the river. (the steep Madison canyon walls) and compare them to 7 mile hole and 9 mile hole today. It is a perfect match. Also Mt Haynes.
            Look at the letter “I” in Madison on the powell map. It is at the top of a steep bank. Look at the 7 mile bridge on a USGS map. Pretty much the same place. That is at the end of Madison Canyon.” – mBG
            **** **** **** ****

            Correct, no other way to read it that I can see.


  33. In my search area, did some reconnaissance today. Going to my solve spot tomorrow. Here’s to finding the blaze and the TC!

      • At mammoth springs, heading out from here. Going to the Wise Blasé after hitting Boiling River tomorrow.

          • Hiked to the lower Undine falls. Was a good time with my dad. Have done the obligatory other places as well (lost creek, joe brown put-in, bear canyon, etc.). I’ll post a more thorough description and interpretation when I get back. It may still be somewhere in lower Undine; I was too exhausted to search as thoroughly as I wanted. Definitely doesn’t seem like a place an 80 year old would go; only find that stuff out when BOTG.

        • Have fun out there and take tones of pictures. I slacked on pictures when I went BOTG and I regret it lol

    • Best of luck to you sir.
      I’m curious as to how many BOTG trips you have made?
      And your search state if you feel comfortable revealing that wide a reference.
      If not I fully understand. 😉

  34. www, I get the sense your not interested in having a little fun with me anyway. No hard feelings….good luck.

      • I got all kinds of mixed metaphors and analogies dancing in my head about the chase.
        I wonder if there are Star Wars parallels to the Chase. You know, how Luke could feel disturbances in the force, before he knew Princess leia existed. I dont want to go off on a wild tangent ( yet anyway)..but the Luke and Leia may have found themselves in the land of Oz.

        • You got me plumb mixed up here with yur talk of parallels.
          Gonna have to look to the Stars to see if I can come up with something that hits home…..
          What else do have behind that curtain?

  35. So last night I was laying in bed before work and I couldn’t sleep. I kept thinking about the final steps of my solution and how I would like to narrow it to a point, so to speak, before I committed to another trip from Ohio.

    Then I had an epiphany and it all seemingly came into focus. Finally I believe I have the last X on my map! After it dawned on me I thought about how dumb I am to have not thought of it before… it seems so simple but I’d missed it for such a long time.

    Now I have to decide if this coming weekend is the right time to go. I have a 4 day window to travel in and it will likely be the last time until summer next year because of work obligations. The last time I traveled this late in the search season the weather didn’t cooperate and I couldn’t get to where I wanted. With only 4 days available it wouldn’t take much to ruin the whole trip.

    So, do I chance it and go, or put the gear away and wait until next season? I’d be traveling and searching alone this weekend for certain. Next year, my wife would likely come along….

    What do you all think? What should I do??


        • Check the extended forecast in and around your area. It can change of course, but if it’s a days-long steady stretch of ’60’s and sunny . . . .

          Sunrise is pushing 7am; sunset is backing towards 6:30pm.

          Does your 4-day window include drive time to-from Ohio? That doesn’t leave much quality time (or energy) on the ground. Or are you flying?

          As noted, safety first. A close second is quality time versus a cluster-rush.


          • Well, I planned on flying this time to save on travel time so I would get about 2 solid days for searching. But then the problem is that I need to rent a vehicle and in my search area, not all of them are created equal. The weather forcast is clear and sunny.

            After mulling it over and talking to my wife, I think I’m going to wait until next year. I will be able to drive my own truck and pull my camper to save on accommodations. It will also give me a larger window to travel and the weather shouldn’t be an issue.

            It’s tough because I (like everyone else) think I know where it is and I would like to test my theory. But I don’t want to make a trip in haste and possibly miss something. I wish I lived closer to the Rocky’s!!


    • Hi TimM,
      I have similar situation – used all my vacation days in 2019 and now just waiting for spring 2020 to take 1 week for BOTG.
      I agreed that it’s tough when you know where it is but never forget about safety. If you go alone and there is no cell phone connection it’s better have GPS with satellite texting. I’m thinking about Garmin inReach Explorer+, Handheld Satellite Communicator with TOPO Maps and GPS Navigation. It supports the worldwide Iridium satellite network for two-way messaging and has topographical mapping as well as 24/7 monitoring in case of an emergency. This Garmin inReach Explorer+ satellite communicator can share your GPS location with friends and family.
      Good luck and don’t be sad about the delay of BOTG. In lottery usually we have only one jackpot winner (or no one) i.e. each poem solution is unique as winner combination in Mega Millions. If you have correct solution it’s very unlikely that somebody has the same right now and planning have BOTG before this winter.

  36. Hmmm.
    JDA out on a search?
    Lots of searchers out there this week before the winter settles in and it’s coming early this year.
    I know it’ll be fall tomorrow but in the northern Rockies it may be the start of winter.

  37. Hi All;

    Just got back from search #30. Same results. Beautiful country – Quite a bit of wildlife. The aspen and birch trees and other foliage is all turning in to beautiful shades of yellow, red and orange – and GOLD. But that is as close to gold as we came. Oh well, a great family outing. JDA

    • I hope you at least saw some shadows in your area.
      Glad to see you got out one last time before the white sky meets the ground.
      We have a lot to think about for the next 8 months.

      • Not the shadow I was looking for, but I think I now know what will create it at the right time – I hope anyway. JDA

        • Chasing shadows is not going to work in my book.
          Same area 30 searches?
          I would have moved on a long time ago.

          • If you say so it must be true, right?
            Well the searches and years hive piled up and all we have is cheap talk. lol
            You’ve been saying you are going to find it for years…
            So, how can I trust what you say?
            I can’t.
            Good entertainment though.

          • Hi Jake;

            The last time I checked, your batting average and mine are about the same – ZERO. I may have been at bat a few more times than you, but the score remains the same – zero for me, zero for you. Just sayin’ JDA

          • If you’re 100% confident about your solve, you only need just a single botg at it, don’t you think? If I can’t find the TC in more than 10 searches I would change either my bat or my batting position or the home ground, if you understand what I mean.
            — MajinKing

          • And that MajinKing, is why you will not find it IMO – randawg
            (sorry, couldn’t resist 😉 )
            But seriously I strongly believe that persistence is the key. Whether it takes 30, or 50, or 100 tries.
            I took nearly 5 years of searching to locate Tut’s tomb.

            “All we have to do is to peel the shrines like an onion, and we will be with the king himself.”

            – Howard Carter

          • No JDA,
            All our batting averages are the same not “about” the same.
            Tell me something I don’t know.

    • Glad to hear you and your family had a great time, JDA. Being amongst the colors must have been beautiful. Although we’re a couple weeks behind “normal” color changes, people are heading up to the hills to catch a glimpse of the slight changes, along with listening to the high pitch calls of elk bugling.

      • pdenver, when are the colors supposed to peak there this year? Am thinking of going to see, as I’ve never really seen fall colors!

        • Hello Lady V. It will depend upon which part of the state you’re wishing to view. It appears that this coming weekend and a few days beyond may be the beginning of peak for the central mountains. I would guess the southern part of the state may be the following weekend. Keep an eye on the weather and freeze because that can change everything.

    • Sorry you didn’t find it, but glad you had a good trip. JDA I’ve been reading your comments for a long while and I like your style. Hope you got some good pictures!

      • He’s got a good pic of himself, that’s all I’ve seen from him since he’s been here since 2016 lol.

        • Lol Jake. I have a ton of pictures, but I have never put them on here….hmm maybe I should. I have seen some really beautiful areas and stunning animals. Your posts are always informative and clear. I like that! I don’t normally make comments very often. One night I couldn’t help myself when Dal’s post had me laughing for like two hours.

          • I’m trying to picture Dal’s post making you laugh for like two
            hours . . . nah . . . doesn’t seem to work. IMO.

    • Wow, 30. That is amazing. I lost count and I’m only around 15 or so.

      Did you notice any hunters on your way to the end zone? I think now is hunting season and there where they be is no place for the meek.

      Cheers to your search and here we go for the long winter contemplation.

      • JDA,

        I’m like Muset, 30 wow!!! I’m at like 8 trips out to the Rockies and 12 different areas of search since 2011. Guess living fairly close to ones search area helps. I need the winter time to evaluate some things said here to maybe understand what or most importantly where the “blaze” lies. If by chance someone has come to know my area of searching I know they will not have a couple of the clues solved before botg. If they do find and understand one they might just land where they can’t understand that last one, which has caused me to search most of possibilities but not all yet, like you.

        Glad you had another good adventure with family and keep on keeping on.


        • Bur;

          Yes, living within a few hours of my search area allows us to make several trips during one search season.

          YUP – YUP, I may need the winter to reevaluate what the “Blaze” may be. I have great aspirations in this area.

          YUP – YUP – Gotta’ have ALL of the clues nailed down first.

          YUP – YUP – I will keep on Keepin’ on JDA

      • Muset;

        Noticed a few, but not many hunters in my area. YUP, getting ready to settle in for a long winter’s nap 🙂 JDA

        • JDA, you seem to be very knowledgeable about all things Fenn. Did FF say that the treasure can be retrieved in any weather? Why does everyone hibernate in winter then?

          Thanks much!

          • MJ;

            Here is a post from Jenny’s site:

            *If you know precisely where it is you can probably retrieve it in any weather (Posted Dec. 11th, 2015)


            So, why do most of us hibernate? I guess it depends on the amount of snow in you search area.

            On the same post linked above, Forrest also said:

            *Shut your engine off until spring (Posted Dec. 4th, 2015)

            Happy hunting, or hibernating 🙂 JDA

          • Hi MJ: here are some other relevant tidbits from Forrest regarding wintertime searching.

            MW 6Q from 2016 (final question’s answer): “I applaud those who are staying in the search, and enjoying what nature has to offer. I will reiterate that the story is real, the chest is where I left it, and it is not in a dangerous place. At age 85 I could go back and get it. But any place can become dangerous for anyone who violates the common sense rules of the chase. Stay out of the mountains in the winter time when it is cold and snow covers the ground.”

            Less than a week later in the People magazine article: “I’ve said over and over not to look for the treasure in the wintertime. I want all the snow melted and the mud dried before they go.”

            And MW Q&A (12/15/2017) from “scout around” (aka Diggin Gypsy): “Hey Forrest, you said we could retrieve the treasure in any season. Well in winter, would we need a snowmobile to get to the spot?” ~scout around

            FF: “Scout around, if you need a snowmobile to get to your solve please stay home and drink hot chocolate. f”

            And going back to a MW Featured Question almost 5 years ago (10/3/2014):

            “Mr. Fenn, Should the chest, for example, be found today, would you be able to tell searchers that the chest has been found in the same day? ~Johnny Q”

            FF: “Well Mr. Q, you present a question that’s hard to answer. There is so much talk on the blogs that whoever finds the treasure may be driven underground and not say anything to anyone. If I am convinced it has been found then I will announce it immediately to Dal and three major media outlets. It seems logical, that if someone solves the clues, they will retrieve the treasure immediately. Until they do, no announcement can have teeth. With snow coming on the situation, this changes of course; in which case, if I were the searcher, I’d stay very quiet until spring.f”

    • Hi JDA,

      I think that only Dal can compete with you in entire BOTG number 🙂 But if you visit each the same location nobody can compete with you 🙂
      Anyway, real searchers should continue their explorations before they can generate new solutions. I’m sure that BOTGs in beautiful places really prolong life and even brain health because searcher is continuously analysing area around and verifying everything around with the poem. Even after finishing BOTG season without any success searchers turned on their brain and generating new solutions during winter time. The chase is definitely infinite process.

      • Hi Andy S: JDA is certainly at the two-sigma level when it comes to # of BOTG trips. Dal has probably lost count of his own. 😉 Cynthia is definitely over 100, while Sacha is at 300+.

      • Andy;

        It is amazing how many spots can “Seem” to follow the clues “EXACTLY”, and yet be wrong. I know of a slew of places that “It is not here” 🙂 JDA

        • Agreed, it’s really amazing that the poem inspired so numerous solutions. Indeed, each solution is correct before BOTG. Right now several searchers claim that they have solved the poem completely and will indulgence in next BOTG. They usually said that they have solved all clues theoretically. Forrest was asked about such possibility:
          Q: How many clues can only be decoded in situ?
          FF: “All of them, in theory, but not likely in practice. A searcher must go to the site to find the treasure.”
          Simple algorithm for in situ search will be: 1) find general area; 2) identify the point that can be qualified as WWWH; 3) find a canyon that start near WWWH; 4) search along the canyon for any place that can be qualified as the hoB. After you found potential hoB it’s time for BOTG. All clues after the hoB most likely can be solved only on the site (IMO). I never even try to solve poem clues after the hoB – it’s waste of time.

          • that is a recipe for 10,000 botg…
            we know 10’s of thousands of searchers have gone looking after they had faith in 7 or 8 or 9 clues, many (well thousands proclaimed 100% confidence) imagine how many more places will fit the bill if we only need to “solve” 3 or 4 clues before jumping in the sedan.

          • Hi Tall Andrew,

            actually #4 in my list (search along the canyon for any place that can be qualified as the hoB) was critical for start BOTG. We don’t know exactly number for the hoB in poem but according to Forrest statement about Brown the hoB is a key to solving of next clues.
            Once again I’ll never start BOTG if I have solutions only for WWWH and CD. I had only 3 BOTGs and only 2 solutions for the hoB i.e. 2 last BOTGs I did to my second solution for the hoB that is most promising.
            What is my criterion that my solution for the hoB is feasible? I just show it to very sceptical persons (my wife or my son) and ask them to provide any arguments that this hoB is not real one i.e. it’s just a fruit of my imagination. The first hoB had very weak impression on sceptical persons but it has very strong connection with last name Brown (as far as I know nobody on this site know about this person and this place). The second solution has 100% success – sceptical persons agreed that this time it’s real hoB. First trip there just showed that even if you know where the hoB next clues are not so easy solvable. I will not do 30 BOTG in this place – maybe 1 or 2 will be enough.

    • Hey there JDA,

      Happy to hear you had a nice trip with the fall colors and all. Curious about your 30 botg, how many of those did you do in your current area?

      • ALL in my “General Search Area”. Almost all within a 2.5 mile circle.

        Yes, we have covered (in detail) a LOT of territory. JDA

  38. In Choteau, MT tonight. Up to Glacier NP tomorrow and back home late Wednesday…
    By the way…folks have asked me why I decided to go look this time of year…
    Two reasons:
    1. As far as I am concerned there are only two times of year to search near YNP-
    a. Just before school lets out in June
    b. Right after school starts up again in September/October
    The fewer vacationers there are in the area the more enjoyable the visit…
    I already learned my lesson about being there before the snow melts…
    2. The little 20 car ferry that takes us back and forth to the island goes away for maintenance 2-3 weeks every year right after Labor Day…
    When I had to commute every day to the TV station on the mainland that was a problem. I got used to taking my vacation while the ferry was gone so I didn’t have to cope with ferry issues…

    • Thank you for the link, Dal. Looks like a beautiful piece of art and a great way to help the children.

    • Donation made and contest entered. This is a fantastic idea! Thanks to Dal, Jenny, CopperDan and everyone else involved in making this happen. I donate money every year to St. Jude’s anyway so it was a sure bet for me to donate to this!!

      CopperDan, as a woodworker myself, you did a beautiful job on this!


  39. Dal, FYI… Glacier Park:
    Road closure on west side of Logan pass.

    Serious Grizzly activity at St Mary’s campground.

    Dal, I’m probably too late…but thought I would pass the Going To the Sun road closure info along since you’re traveling through Glacier.

    St. Mary’s to the top of Logan is open. However West side of Glacier’s road closed on a large section.


    • W O W – How EXCITING!!! How would you like coming around a corner and seeing this??? And, at the end, as a defeated, angered bear runs in your direction??? W O W JDA

      • Last time I was up near Kootenay I was bicycle touring. Don’t think I’d want to run into that on the road, no matter how exciting. Maybe I just lack a sense of adventure. 🙂

  40. The significance of the number 22 is obvious. The lead searcher has finally put 2 and 2 together. It’s as simple as that. He can go straight to it I’m guessing.

  41. There is a agonizing problem that is an issue with the line in the poem in stanza 3 and it involves the word “your”…..There’ll be no paddle up your creek. How is this being used as a possessive or determiner?

    Possessive: such as used as a modifier before a noun, your car or your paper, or on your left.
    Determiner: such as being associated with you, your house, your car etc, or an unspecified person or used to indicate all things or people of a certain type: such as your company etc…

    I know it’s not my creek, it’s not my name on the creek, it’s not something I’m familiar with. I don’t know if it’s on my left or right. I don’t know if it belongs to all of us, (public domain).

    There’s plenty of creeks out there, so why is it “your” creek? Or is it the only creek in the area?

    Thinking out loud,

    • RtB;

      I go along with your last line – IMO It is the only creek in the immediate area – the area that you are searching. JMO – JDA

    • Hi Rubber to Boots: imo, it’s “your” creek as a consequence of you having identified it as the solution to a prior clue.

      • zaphod73491,

        I think the creek is an clue that is combined with HLaWH that places the searcher in a specific area and not a solution to a prior clue, imo.

        • Aaron,

          I’m having trouble in seeing your reasoning that the 1st stanza is somehow a help with the creek. How is this so?

          If I remember correctly, didn’t you say that the 1st stanza helps with the first clue? Pardon me if I’m not correct. If so this seems contradictory as a helper to the creek.

          • Hi RB, great question. The first stanza helps me with determining what IT is which points me to WWH. The combination of my WWH and IT tells me what my creek is. There is only one option, I think.

      • I agree with zap, that the creek is probably figuratively yours, at the moment, because you found it through prior clues. But what do you do about it?

        Imagine a lake (in a canyon/draw/valley) you arrived at through prior clues, and it has a feeder creek.
        TBNPUYC could mean don’t go up the feeder creek
        JHLAWH could refer to just staying at the lake

        The more common interpretation seems to be to “go up that creek you can’t paddle up” to arrive at water high.

        If you were there, you would be wise to do both.

    • Hmmmm…… Posted at the end…
      Try this definition of YOUR : Direction related to you

      Best Regards Again

    • I, too, have meditated much on the word “your”. I have come up with several alternative understandings and I think it a bit foolish to simply assume you understand it based on your own biases (such as: “I’m not worried since there is only one creek in my search area.”) My area has more than one creek. (Is one of the creek’s someone else’s, and some other creek FF’s creek? I had an earlier solve where the treasure chest was hidden between two creeks (FF was “in the middle”). I think it is a good question and you should not dismiss that word quickly.

    • Rubber to Boots, I think you get it.
      Good question. I like to plug opposites into the equation and see what we get.
      He doesn’t say: There’ll be no paddle up my creek
      So it’s safe to say it’s not his, it’s ours. It could be a no named creek where you could have it named after you, after you find the treasure but that’s an ATF. I think you could also request a name change with a named creek.
      This line also relates to with him giving you title to the gold line (your chest).

      The qualifiers for your creek seem to be heavy loads and water high. All creeks have water that is higher and most have heavy loads. So maybe water high is a waterfall or lakes or ponds because not all creeks have them.
      Heavy loads could be boulders or a scree field or 2 touching the creek or it may be a bunch of logs stuck on your creek that stay there for hundreds of years being constantly replenished with the falling timber into your creek.

      One thing that I do like is when you are drawing ever nigh, you have many creeks to choose from and that makes sense to me.

      As most gazers of this blog know, my creek is Taylor Creek because it qualifies for my interpretations I have listed above and this is where the poem takes me.

      Taylor comes from the word tailor, so maybe this creek is tailored for you.

      It’s good to ask questions like this and get feedback from those that reply and mess around with different meanings and scenarios yourself.
      You gotta ask yourself: Why did he use these words.

      • Jake – Right. In my solve, that ‘Y•our creek’ is in YNP, the park for the people, so ‘IT’ is ‘our•S’:


        No paddle up that Y-shaped creek, just before you get to my wiSe blaze at Baker’S Hole. Because there are no manned boats allowed on the Madison River in YNP (your park). Which is why Forrest tied his dinghy to his belt and wore his waders in the preface of TFTW.

        But you can paddle your canoe across the Madison, outside the park boundary (pink bold line) at Baker’S Hole. Like a ‘brave and in the wood’ Indian. To reach Forrest’s ‘ef•fort’? Or, you can wade accross as we did, which will be a ‘worth the cold’ effort later this week, I am sure, with the drop in temperature.

        All part of my Baker’S Hole solve. All IMO.

        • Jake – And that 20 foot deep secret fishing hole Fritz frequents is certainly a possibility for HLAWH in the vicinity of the mouth of that Y-shaped creek on my topo link. I can imagine Forrest navigating that ‘water high’ area in his waders with the ‘heavy loads’ of his camping gear on his dinghy attached to his belt. I watched old Fritz take a rest after doing that, minus the dinghy. His wading staff helped a lot, he said.

          • Jake – And per Howard Buck in his 1938 fly fishing book, feeder creeks into the river create prime trout lies. I think Fritz was telling the truth about his prolific catches in his secret hole.

    • R to Boots, your question is one I’ve asked myself when solving areas. I interpret “your” creek one of 2 ways: an un-named creek and or “yore” a creek of the past, now a draw…Ever drawing

      • I’m also a believer in context. IMO ff built the poem to be read in grid format; therefore he chose each word to mingle with surrounding words to form other words.

        The “cornerstone” letters of the poem are “aide”
        when read circularly they can spell idea.

        IMO the idea is to make new words utilizing letters surrounding. The difficult part of doing this, is it creates so many new words, and mini narratives that one can get lost in the rabbit holes. Believe it or not ff included in TTOTC poem the words “Mayor Son Bono” with the word Mary next to it and Cher nearby.
        (Upper left Quadrant of the poem with all lines justified to the right. Weird, right?
        I’m still trying to figure out why on earth Forrest would include Mayor Bono.

          • 42 – Put in ‘Chere’ (misspelled) to get to the 2011 Loreen Mills interview transcript. Forrest is making a reference to Cher’s autograph in the guest book of his Fenn Galleries guest house. I can’t copy the direct link or the text.

            Then look again at Forrest’s signature in the Forrest’s Scrapbooks header. I see a backwardS version of my Smil•e treasure spot at Baker’S Hole, surrounding the ‘F’ in Fenn.

            Nice autograph, Forrest.

    • I don’t think that “your” is very important in regards to the creek. But solving this part of the poem is not necessarily as easy as ABC. Study the poem a few more dozen times, and good luck to you. All IMO.

    • Of all the creeks out there, your creek is the one that culminates with you finding Indulgence because you have to include it in your solve process. IMHO.

  42. I can’t reconcile the ideas that f could ride a bike to heavy loads water high, and that the treasure is not near any man made trails.
    Would that make it a clear field to ride across? or a smooth creek bottom? A wide deer or cattle trail?
    Or is it a red herring?

    • IMO. riding a bike is a red herring, as well as a backwards bike. Maybe we should be looking for flat land after canyon down, much easier to ride a bike, if that were the case.

      • I agree to an extent with your first premise (red herring), but disagree with your second (backwards bike).

        To me, FF was being sarcastic when he responded with “What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the ‘water high’ when I am through with it?” Such perspective leads me to believe that this line is somewhat puzzling, but not to the level of a red herring because FF isn’t intentionally trying to mislead us (we do that to ourselves!). As others have said, if he had the opportunity to use a bike, why make 2 trips when such could effectively be used to transport everything in one trip? Add to that all the comments about him walking from his car to the hidey spot and the case for it being a sarcastic response is strengthened. However, being as this is FF, somewhere in his response is usually something else that gets overlooked that is actually some type of hint/nudge. In this instance, I think it is the “water high” reference (which he himself even places some emphasis on by enclosing such in parenthesis). Perhaps tossing his bike into what he actually knows is water high, and what we as searchers think it is, gives him a belly-chuckle since the very act of doing so is ludicrous (for instance, if water high is a shallow creek that cascades down to his hidey spot, tossing his bike into 2 inches of water to “hide” it is just plain silly—hence his sarcastic response). I feel many of his ATF’s have these subtle nudges in them, and the end result of figuring out the subtlety of it is a humorous one with a tiny nugget of knowlege about TTOTC woven in.

        As to the backwards bike video, my interpretation of such is the same as above—-there is a subtle nudge in there. We know FF architected his poem/treasure hunt/map and once we begin understanding how (which I think he reveals in stanza #1), we can work towards the correct difficult but not impossible solve.

    • Michael;

      Why does he have to ride that bike? Couldn’t he just use it as a way to lighten his load? Strap the treasure on the back – walk beside it, and take the load off of his shoulders. Then MAYBE ride it back to the car – wash, rinse, repeat – JDA

      • Good idea. But, he would have taken the whole load in one trip in that case. It reminds me of his walk to Grebe Lake with Concy.
        I am going with the statement being a red herring, or a wise crack.

        • Michael;

          I disagree – BALANCE – a 42 Lb weight would be hard to keep under control on a narrow (possibly) non-human trail. Most animal trails have rocks that would need to be navigated around or over. I tried strapping a 42 Lb. weight on a mountain bike, and it was hard to manage. A 22 Lb. weight was much easier to keep under control. JDA

          • Michael, JDA,

            As far as riding a bike to the chest location.
            I believe it is possible if your a fit athletic person. As for Forrest riding a bike I would say he could to that 500′ location place with no problem. Now from that place a bike could still be used to walk beside and push it up to “water high”. So JDA, I could agree that possibly a bike could have been helpful in transporting the chest to Forrest’s secret location but not needed to perform his task.

            Aaron said above that he thinks the first stanza helps with “your creek”. Well the first line identifies the area of the creek.
            As I have gone alone “in” there. “In there” is right where npuyc creek is first sighted. This trail your on at that point takes you “into ” a hidden area going up and in the mountains, and yes there are “riches new and old” in this area.

            All I discuss is what I have come across for the poem clue solves for my solve area.

            Just thinking again about “your creek”. What if you could purchase the rights to name the creek, of course after you found the chest, then you could put your name for the creek.
            Bur’s Creek- has a certain flare to it LOL.

            Good luck all,

        • I think ignoring all the ATF statements by FF and, instead, focusing on the poem would be helpful. As always, IMO.

          • Tall Andrew: ignoring the ATFs is an excellent strategy for wasting time and money on a BOTG search that can’t possibly succeed.

    • Michael Hendrickson – Turn the Baker’S Hole map I provided in my ‘your creek’ post above to Satellite view. You will see where the three mile Boundary Trail meets the Madison River. This was the most direct route for Forrest to ride his bike from the FennHaven Cabins to swim or fish.

      This is me, riding a theoretical ‘backwardS bike’. There is no human trail close to my hidey spot, which is at least 200′ across the Madison from the end of that trail.

    • @MichaelHendrickson

      My thoughts:

      I’m presuming you are referencing his 10.02.12 Forrest Gets Mail reply in which he wrote, “What is wrong with me just riding my bike out there and throwing it in the “water high” when I am through with it?”

      His comment IS relevant for two reasons. 1. He gets a boatload of emails and only selects a few for which he sends a response to a blog where he knows multiple searchers will see his comments and that they will be digitally archived for the benefit of future searchers. He wouldn’t waste his time spewing BS. 2. He follows his ‘bike’ comment with “You don’t know how many man hours I have spent on that subject. ”

      Ability to transfer the 42 lb chest+contents while on/with a bike is irrelevant. He is here talking about getting to his final resting spot when the time has come.

      Bear in mind that he only needs to get to “water high” with the bike. From there he can walk to his final spot. So there may indeed be a human trail to “water high”, but the final spot is not “in very close proximity” to this point.

      Possibly worth considering is that he mentioned his ability to ride his bike to “water high” seven years ago, when he was just a spry young lad with plenty of vigor.

      FWIW, the ability to ride a bike to “waters high” is on my list of criteria that any solve must satisfy. That said, I must admit that by applying my list of criteria, I have, to date, failed to find tc. And I’m not such a snowflake that I feel I must apologize for multiple failures.

  43. I can not believe people still take this (riding and throwing bicycle) quote as serious?
    (that email is wholly different than the riding bicycle backwards quote, a fully different context)

    what is below is about the (riding and throwing bicycle) quote.

    part of “quoting” and researching is to put those quotes in context, sometimes you need to quote the question too. or in this case the entire email, before one understands what is going on…

    the only reason ff “highlighted” this question/answer, is it was the EMAIL he was highlighting.

    he was responding to a con man pretending to be a “lawyer type” to help ff out.

    ff was conning a con man.
    ff is letting searchers know that he is not going to fall for ridiculous cons of any type.

    (searchers, who apparently have a larger percentage of the gullible, wacky, dishonest part of the human experiment than normal, and in this case the term “normal” I am going to use loosely)

    that is what one is supposed to take away from that email, not the con he was perpetrating on the con man.

    • wait…so even though Forrest offers to buy the bracelet back at the end of his reply, he DOESN’T really want it?!?

      Thanks for the tip. That’ll save me some postage.

    • also…just wondering…if it’s not too much trouble…since you are endowed with the ability to delineate between what is and what isn’t material in f’s ATF comments….would you please take a couple of moments and go through them all and just strike out all of those that are irrelevant, and if some of the meaningful ones are more meaningful, highlight those.

      Gosh, that sure would help simplify coming up with a correct solve. It’d be terrific. Much appreciate it. U B da man!

  44. Background and Research
    Only recently have I learned of Forrest Fenn’s treasure. Like many others on here I came to enjoy the thrill of the chase as who doesn’t want to be the one to solve the puzzle and find real treasure? Unfortunately, as I and my search partner found that was the easy portion of it. After combing through all the ideas of others and rereading the poem at least a hundred times over it became more and more evident that the treasure sat on private land. Perhaps this conclusion came from my own characteristics and believing that Forrest shared many of my same views on how we want to go.
    Unfortunately, the government does not like to find dead bodies on their properties and burying treasure on public lands is a whole other legal conundrum of which Fenn knows quite a bit about. Therefore, the best option for Forrest was to purchase land next to national forests. While reviewing the possible areas for where one might purchase land, I focused near Sphinx mountain as other solves seemed to be in this general area as well as well as my first few. I then began looking at key words and found that Fenn like myself enjoyed a good Dr. Pepper and had beat cancer in 1988.
    While looking at properties near forest lines that may also have a blaze, I noticed a very particular looking road, Rising Sun Road within the Rising Sun Estates community. To me it looked like a blazing sun, so I investigated the property owners near here. An interesting find came about. An owner of a trust titled 3-V 1988 Trust popped up for a plot in Cameron, Montana (9S 1E 27) (Lat 45° 1’29.28″N, Long 111°35’7.69″W). Even more peculiar? The address of the trustee, 1301 PEPPER DR, D, EL CAJON, CA 92021. Sound familiar? (Fenn also from Dal’s site “Now, what if I wanted to secret a can of Dr. Pepper under a rock in the cooling waters of a rivulet somewhere in my allotted public acreage?”)
    After researching the address, I found that this address was home to a mechanic shop for suites A-C in El Cajon but suite D did not seem to really exist nor did the organization 3-V as it was not actually located here. After searching further into 3-V I found a contact number and name who I will not list here (you can easily google the organization under that address and their first and middle name are fitting) and tried to make contact unsuccessfully while on the trip to Cameron to gain permission to visit the site (As a humorous side note the company came up as 2 different types of business, a mining machine company and or real estate) As for confirmation that this was the site I looked further into other theories and puzzles which had been around including one from Dalneitzels website. Interesting enough in one of his word search finds he managed to find hidden words by simply realigning the letters to begin at the right. A cluster of words indicated a road which aligned with the find. Rising Sun, Lot Ten, In a well. Also a few missed words were The, Fort, Trees, Leave which could indicate the path to leave through as The Fort is across the road from the community (Also lot ten is from the beginning of the turn on Rising Sun). This all aligned with my own theory that Fenn hid the treasure most likely in a well/bowl near a creek that ran through his property. Remember that Fenn stumbled across a find in a similar fashion earlier in his career under flagstone. The clues also all lined up.
    Begin it where warm waters halt (Earthquake Lake)
    And take it in the canyon down, (Go NORTH on 287, following Madison River)
    Not far, but too far to walk. (24.2 miles)
    Put in below the home of Brown. (There is a put in below Beartooth Flyfishing brown for bear and capital B because it’s a proper location)
    From there it’s no place for the meek, (Wolf Creek)
    The end is ever drawing nigh; (Ennis is on your left going east on the creek)
    There’ll be no paddle up your creek, (As we found out this is a very small stream)
    Just heavy loads and water high. (It is difficult to access wolf creek and the legality of the stream requires that one use the water high law and you will need to cut over into BLM to continue the journey)
    If you’ve been wise and found the blaze, (Rising Sun Road)
    Look quickly down, your quest to cease, (2 C’s is the property marker for Fenn’s property)
    But tarry scant with marvel gaze (Unsure but most likely means enjoy the view and or sandy/tar like as you will need to be in the creek to legally be going through here. Marvel gaze most likely means marble the treasure is under. Could also be an actual well located on site which may have something covering it up as is often the case.)
    Just take the chest and go in peace. (Again, unsure but this could mean the way out or that once you get back to the car if parked at the Palisades put it the road looks like a peace sign).
    The Trip
    After realizing that I was on to something I invited a friend to come with me to visit the area so we could attempt to retrieve the treasure. Believing that access to Wolf Creek was public it seemed to be straightforward. Unfortunately, it was anything but that and this is the real story of what Fenn I believe wants to tell. After arriving in Ennis/Cameron area we realized that we would need to take the route suggested as there was no clear path to the national forest that would lead down to the creek. On day 1 of the search we began the journey at 8AM from the Palisades put-in. We then walked up to 287 and crossed the road to begin the journey up Wolf Creek. Unfortunately, signs were posted stating no trespassing, but a gate was available at the bottom of the Sun Ranch property next to the creek, so we believed at the time that we were clear to enter through this way (which we later found out was not the case).
    As we began our trek through Wolf Creek we realized that would not be able follow the route as instructed given the miles long distance to the hill which lay within national forest land which then we would still have to cross another few miles of forested land which recently had grizzly attacks and dozens of sightings. We then decided to chance it and take the land directly next to the creek but realized as we continued, we should not be going this way as we saw livestock up ahead and did not wish to disturb those operations and livestock could alert the grizzlies to our locations. After realizing we would eventually run into some sort of legal or safety issue we decided to turn back for the day.
    That evening and the next day we attempted to reach out to owners of the properties where the creeks ran so that we could legally and safely navigate through the path as well as the local ranger station. We were denied access for recreational access by the ranch to the north. We were also unsuccessful in contacting the owners of Sun Ranch of which Wolf Creek ran through (it has its own history of denying access to the creek which can be found online). As for the property owners within Rising Sun Estates it is impossible to legally ask for access by driving as the road is closed and locked off. Furthermore, the community boasts of having private access to the public land so they would be unlikely to be the type to approve us walking through their road. Furthermore, we still would not have direct access to the creek without permission from the owner (Fenn’s Trust) who we also attempted to contact at the provided business number.
    As for the public land side these areas are not readily accessible unless you want to ask for permission from another ranch who runs horses and even then these are guided tours so you will unlikely be able to reach the final destination which is public land but still inaccessible. This idea was suggested by the local ranger station and or papoose creek which would require too long of a distance to walk in a day and too dangerous given the recent Grizzly bear attacks and fresh carcasses we saw while on our trip.
    Fenn’s Legacy
    Fenn may have set this up in order to illustrate the governments treatment of public vs private lands both for personal use and for excavating. After all Fenn himself dealt with the government raiding his home back in the early 2000’s. This is essentially one of the points Fenn was trying to make in that same article from Dal’s website Fenn states,
    “Now, what if I wanted to secret a can of Dr. Pepper under a rock in the cooling waters of a rivulet somewhere in my allotted public acreage? If I did, I would not need to use all of my area, I would need just 7.5 fluid ounces and 90 calories of space. And I would still have about 2.08555 acres remaining. Seems fair to me but would I have broken the law? Yes or No? If yes, then let us change the law because who knows where that nonsense could end. If no, then why are we getting so excited about the little things?”
    Why is it that we must go through so many loops just to access land and waters which belong to all of us and then be denied? Perhaps this was yet another point Fenn was trying to make regarding how the government prevents access to basic right of ways.
    In the following years I hope to revisit Yellowstone with the family and share with them the sheer beauty that it has to offer as does the Rockies in general. I believe Forrest Fenn wanted us to learn as well as to get out and visit the beauty the wilderness has to offer. I am grateful to Mr. Fenn for giving a friend and myself a reason to get out and visit Yellowstone. We had a great time and the only thing I regret is not having more time to see it all.
    Good luck to everyone out there and perhaps you will be the one to find the treasure! Just know there are several barriers that you will need to likely go through in order to reach the destination if this is the solve. Hopefully this information can get someone there.
    If you want to get to the land to search around the creek that runs directly through the property look into the water high law and ensure that you are doing everything legally.
    Make sure to bring a couple of friends as there are predators within the area with bear spray.
    If you do decide to go take the Wolf Creek route if you can get permission from Sun Ranch or better yet ask for permission to cross the land for recreational purposes as it leads directly to Sun Creek Road.
    If taking the long legal way use the Papoose Creek south of Wolf Creek to cross into national forest land and again be careful.
    You could also use the Indian Creek trail from the north, but you will need to ask for permission from the ranch who owns land through it and supposedly there have been numerous grizzly sightings in this area as well. Take a group of friends to watch the horses while some stay back to watch the horses while the rest search in the creek. Again, you will want to check with the legalities of going through this small creek though that runs through private property.
    Try contacting the organization who is the legal trustee through their provided contact number found online. Perhaps they will answer for you although it is unlikely and there is no voicemail setup.
    Remember none of this is even a guarantee of where the treasure is and there are legal ramifications to consider beforehand if following this “solve”.
    As winter is quickly approaching be prepared for the cold and know that soon the landscape will change to snow.
    Stay safe (there was after all recently a teenager who was attacked by a grizzly bear next to Wolf Creek) and enjoy the chase!

      • Thank you Kurt. We did notice that depending upon which map you use this creek does show up. The official Madison county map does not show it. Others however do. This could complicate the find legally as it is debatable on whether the creek running through the property qualifies. As for wolf creek there is no way in except through the unlocked gate at the bottom of the bridge. You must cross 50 feet or so of land in order to access this creek from the 287 side.

      • walking a stream or creek is not the same as a “navigable” river. judging by the rulings, one would have to be able to get a boat of some sort in the creek in an amount of water to make the boat usable, while kayaks are great for certain amount of flow, if you can physically walk up the creek, that pretty much guarantees that one could not do the same in a boat of any type, up or down that stream.

        I can just see the judge’s ruling already: why would you be there without a boat if you wanted to navigate this creek?… while you fidgeted in your seat.

        • This is true at the federal level. The state’s seem to take their own view on creeks. Montana decided decades ago that they do not need to be navigable in order to be used. Montana Recreational Use of Streams Act enacted the water high law. I believe this wording was exactly why Fenn chose this specific wording. It does not guarantee your right to access the waters through land but it does guarantee even non navigable water rights.

    • David – Great write up! Thank you!

      Sun Ranch was one of my original potential search areas, back in 2013, when Roger Lang owned the property and put a Westslope cutthroat trout fish hatchery on the land. I love the perfectly square bench in the landscape, next to Wolf Creek. Did you make it to the Wolf Creek Hot Springs, btw? There was a Native American prayer wheel on that bench. I read about it on a website for the Sun Ranch West development, located across the Madison River. They have since removed that page.

      Here are the three current owners of Sun Ranch:


      Are you saying that you think Forrest bought one of the ten homesites Roger Lang originally developed? Roger did some amazing conservation work on that property. And Montana’s TPL and the Madison River Foundation were involved in that. The searcher 42 and I brought that up on HOD earlier.

      • Thank you for the information Lisa! We did not make it to the Wolf Creek hot springs! Perhaps next time. Hopefully you all enjoyed the views!

        As for the location, within Rising Sun Estates just north of Sun Ranch there is a road called Rising Sun Road. On that parcel located at 9S 1E 27 where the road “blazes” is a piece that is owned by an organization 3-V Inc located at 1301 Pepper Dr. (a shell organization as they are located in CA at a property that doesn’t exist). A creek runs through it that originates from the national forest. The creek itself shows up on some maps but not others. The history of the property was originally purchased in 1986 and was transferred to this new organization in 2006 or 2007. I found it too peculiar to be coincidence given the Dr. Pepper references and dates aligning around the same time frames. I am not sure if Roger Lang owned this piece as well but do remember something about there being some history of Rising Sun Estates originally being a portion of something else.

        Was your search area along the creek that ran through the same properties?

    • while it is certainly possible that the chest lies on private property, imo, it is not ff’s style or method, to put “no trespassing” signs on that property, nor would he be of any type of “thinker” to of then had land, get surrounded by other property that then could also have a “no trespassing” sign on.

      in order for that to happen, one would have to think ff did not think this through. and that is just stretching one’s definition of ff.

      • It wasn’t of his own doing. He most likely wanted a piece of land that directly connected to public lands. The issue is most of those parcels are either ranches or subdivisions which enact their own rules. Fenn didn’t choose this in fact I believe it’s what he’s fighting against. Unless he was to put millions more into larger parcels this was likely the only way. Look at the clues provided. It would also explain why Fenn explained his path may not be the same as yours.

        • Hi, and again, that would mean ff didn’t think this through, and that would be stretching one’s definition of ff, imo.. he has said on numerous occasions that he “thought of everything”, also consulted with people and non people (ie lawyers).. he also had a long time to prepare to do the “thinking” of everything.

          • I agree that asking lawyers would have led him to private property due to the fact the government would have tried to keep it. The property does border national forest though and he would need to purchase what was available. It would be difficult to get to but not impossible. The fact it borders an isolated area of national forest where vehicles can’t go perhaps played a part as well. Fenn ran into his own issues with the legalities of government. While driving through the areas I did not see any roads that led directly to national forest which didn’t have trespassing signs. The fact that he quoted we perhaps need to change the access laws is what resonated with me. “Now, what if I wanted to secret a can of Dr. Pepper under a rock in the cooling waters of a rivulet somewhere in my allotted public acreage? If I did, I would not need to use all of my area, I would need just 7.5 fluid ounces and 90 calories of space. And I would still have about 2.08555 acres remaining. Seems fair to me but would I have broken the law? Yes or No? If yes, then let us change the law because who knows where that nonsense could end. If no, then why are we getting so excited about the little things?”

            The “dr pepper” is there. It’s accessibility is the difficult part.

          • Davhall,
            I don’t see an argument for “I agree that asking lawyers would have led him to private property due to the fact the government would have tried to keep it.”. There have been multiple legal opinions that have been shared on this blog that came to a different conclusion. Can you cite particular laws and their applications as some of those opinions did, or is this just based on a “don’t trust government” point of view?

            I’ve read the applicable laws for my main search area (on a certain type of public lands) and they very specifically state what the finder and the authorities are required to do in this particular situation. I’m not a lawyer but the language in the statute is so simple and straightforward that I don’t see any wiggle room for the government to keep it.

            So best of luck, but my guess is that a court wouldn’t look too favorably on a defense against a trespassing that consisted of “this poem told me to go there so I knew that the author of the poem must have made arrangements with the landowners”. The no trespassing signs are a clear indication that there is no arrangement for, or reason for access in your area.

        • Davhall85…

          Border, hem, chet
          “Below the home of fbfenn” … all these words/phrase are in the poem and IMO speak to a piece of ff’s private property adjacent: Forest service land; a roadway with easements; a forest service timber or mining lease; or off reservation trust land.

          • Or Simply Forrest Fenn’s private property. that would make any searcher without express permission…a trespasser.

            PP Also makes it easier for the treasure to sit there for 1000 years…in essence Forrest taking it with him as stated was his original plan ( see thrill of the chase comment to Ralph Lauren).

  45. Hi all
    I want your input on this if anyone is willing.From the car to the hiddey place
    Forrests says it’s a few miles.i wonder if the few miles total the out & back
    out & back for the two trips from the car to that special place?

    • Hi Clint: that ATF is open to some interpretation. First off, he places no minimum on how far he hid the treasure from where he parked his sedan, only a somewhat vague maximum. Here’s the full Q&A for reference:

      MW Featured Question (10/13/2014): “You once said you walked the 92 miles from West Yellowstone to Bozeman to just experience it. Obviously you were much younger than you were when you hid the treasure. Too far to walk means different things at different ages so I was wondering if you would be so bold as to give an estimate of how far you walked to hide the treasure after leaving your car: was it > 10miles, between 5 and 10 miles, between 1 and 5 miles, or less than 1 mile? ~Thanks, Ron”

      FF: “Ron, your question sounds like a travelogue, but I’ll answer it. No, I don’t want to be that bold. But I will say that I walked less than a few miles if that will help. I just looked “few” up and one definition is “scant.” Why do I sound like I’m talking in circles? f”

      “How far you walked to hide the treasure after leaving your car.” The reason the question is ambiguous is because we know Forrest took two trips: one to drop off the loot, the other to drop off the chest. (As far as which he did first, he hasn’t been consistent about that, but it doesn’t matter for the purposes of your question.) Since the bronze chest is a “treasure” in its own right, he could answer with three different distances: car-to-hidey-spot, car-to-hidey-spot-to-car, or total distance walked from when he parked to when he drove away.

      Personally, I think it’s the first of the three — that’s the most “permissive” in terms of maximum distance traveled: less than a few miles x 4. I certainly doubt that total distance was more than 12 miles (e.g. 2.99 miles is less than a few miles x 4 is just shy of 12 miles).

      We also have this safety recommendation from Forrest under “On Searching”: “If you can’t make two trips from your car to your solve in several hours, then don’t go.” Link: https://dalneitzel.com/2016/02/03/on-searching/#comment-121303

      By any normal definition of “several,” no searcher is going to hike 12 miles in several hours. I feel safe in opining that the one-way distance is under 3 miles.

    • Clint, I’ve searched many times and now believe that the hidey spot is relatively close to where he parked. It would have been too heavy for him to carry more than a mile IMO. So, Much closer.

      • and then he must of took a long nap for the rest of the “afternoon”? or the rest of the “several hours”? as even an 80 yr old would make short work of less than a mile (x 4 trips) in the span of about an hour and change.

        we forget that he took jungle survival training, and experiences the world standing up for pretty much all his life (much of it more than 1 mile in altitude). while we sit at desks and sofas getting the world brought to us 🙂

        • Just my opinion. He could have had to carry something else heavy to conceal the chest in. And this may have taken up some of his time.
          Did he say specifically it took him “X” hours, or did he say it shouldn’t take a searcher more than an afternoon. I don’t know.

          • i’ll paraphrase, he had said that he did the depositing with two trips in one afternoon, and on another occasion he told someone that if it takes more than several hours to make two trips, find another solve..

            imo, it is not his style to say “few” “scant” and “several” to mislead a searcher when the real answer is ‘1’ instead.

        • Writis: Forrest said it took him 7 hours to hike up to Avalanche Lake. 6 miles, 3000-foot elevation gain. That’s probably a better metric for non-trail hiking pace.

  46. Re: ATF statements. If we are to consider Mr Fenn a credible source, ALL statements and hints must be satisfied with an ultimate solve. Working on it.

  47. User zaphod73491, I was wondering if there is a way I could contact you (away from a public forum). I haven’t posted in a while – took a break, thought deeply and have some different ideas. (Very K.I.S.S.) You appear to be a sharp analyzer and I would like to run a few thoughts past you.

  48. Saun Moony, if ALL of ff’s Statements and hints must be reconciled to yield a correct solution (as you proclaim) how will you reconcile Forrest’s remark on TTOTC page 14 “non-fiction writers don’t have to be right but eight-five percent of the time and everyone knows that.”

    I’m not disagreeing with you. Rather, I’m curios how you reconcile this comment.

    • What’s in the books are not atf statements. Those must be considered with the associated context. Atf statements would include interview answers.

  49. To all,
    Has anyone been to a BOTG sight and found abandoned/wrecked old cars, logging trailers, railroad cars, etc.?
    The reason: FF has many old cars in the stories. Many references to cars seem to indicate they became wrecked up on a bank across a creek or became stranded in the woods. He also talks about “Crean” and how a car became twisted after being wrecked and wound up on a bank. Too many stories about cars to show a link or page. If you been on this blog for some time or own the books, I’m sure you can figure out how to search for what I am referencing. Sorry Dal. Please don’t moderate or whatever it’s called. Thanks.
    I’m thinking that the solve may include some old car out in the woods…..aka. Blaze (anything that stands out)…..maybe close to a campground?
    My search area, Cimarron Canyon, does not have any old cars/logging trailers/railroad cars, etc.. At least I have not found any.
    Thanks to all for any input.
    Good luck and stay safe.
    As always, IMO.

  50. If you are searching in Montana, or Northern Wyoming, make sure to pay attention to the forecast for your area as heavy winds and snow are expected starting tomorrow.

  51. Back home now. Twenty day whirlwind tour of the Rockies. Only two days were spent searching. The rest was visiting parks and monuments and appreciating not only wild lands but also the architecture and accoutrements of National Park Lodges…and of course spending time with Forrest.

    Capital Reef National Park
    Hovenweep National Monument
    Santa Fe, Forrest and Voice of America Interview
    Pinedale,WY, Museum of the Mountain Man
    Yellowstone, West Yellowstone, Old Faithful Lodge and the Lake Lodge
    Cody, Museum of the West
    Great Falls, Charlie Russell Museum
    Glacier National Park, Lake MacDonald Lodge

    We didn’t stay at any of the lodges…too expensive for our blood, but we enjoyed them, admired them and appreciated them…

    4,800 miles driven. No deer hit. Ezzy is a champ.

    Now that I am broke 🙂 I plan on spending the next week holed up in my cabin, working on the video and audio recordings of Forrest and the searching adventures sent in by others while I was away…

    I will post them as I finish them…

    I think you will be interested in some of the audio recordings of Forrest…I know there was new info he revealed and I will try to get them up quickly…so you can take that info into account for your spring searches…

    The videos are stories from Forrest and not necessarily related specifically to the chase…

    Please stay tuned…

    • Dal, glad to hear you got home save and sound and had a good time. Thanks for all you do for the chase. How is Forrest doing? Hope he is okay. Can’t wait to see the videos and hear the audio recordings. Thanks again.

    • Welcome Home Dal,

      Glad you had a good trip without any hiccups. I am looking forward to the recordings and pictures of your trip! Some new info revealed, you say??? It doesn’t matter if you say that the information isn’t necessarily related specifically to the chase… Many people will consider it to be. Many searchers (myself included) tend to hang on every word he says! I try not to get too wrapped up in it, because it is usually just normal conversation but sometimes he says things that make my ears perk up! I hope the Fenn clan are doing well! Thanks Dal!


    • Glad you and Kathy had a good time. Looking forward to the new videos and searchers’ adventures.

    • Hi Dal,
      did Forrest revealed any new clues/hints for searchers?
      We know that he said n recent interview that he will stop provide any new hints/clue but maybe he changed his mind.

      • Andy-
        I already mentioned that I think he did provide new info…
        You can judge for yourself when I post the interviews…

        • Oh very interesting. Do you have a timeframe of when to look out for the posting of the interviews?

        • Hi Dal,

          Thanks! New info is always better than old one. Each time all searchers hope that new info from Forrest will be very important piece of the puzzle (poem).


    • Dal,
      I’m glad you had fun and got home safely.
      Do you know when the ‘Voice of America’ interview will be available to view?

  52. Let me first state at no point do I condone or believe trespassing to be necessary. Montana law allows for individuals to use even non navigable streams. It is however made more difficult to reach the find due to the land on one side of the bridge blocking access.

    There is also the issue of the gated road of which directly leads into national forest next to the creek but it is locked. If the treasure were to be found on a creek that runs through private land owned by Fenn this is very much a viable and legal way which is why I believe he mentioned the cold. To do this however must either get permission to enter through the one side or traverse the entirety of the creek to national forest then cross back over to the creek which runs through the area. At no point is breaking a law necessary. It is just more difficult and not at all the ideal way.

  53. Let’s have a searcher meet up! Where are the NC (or close) Search peeps. Red Robin on Walnut Street in Cary NC. Saturday October 5th at 3pm. Bill K is co-hosting with me (so there will be at least two of us)…. Come on by and have some search talk and maybe a drink Hope to see you there. Any questions hit us up on FB messenger or email me at kpro3@aol.com. Everyone is welcomed!

  54. Mr. Neitzel,
    Your safe return to Lummi Island with you and yours is wonderful news!
    I look forward to seeing your adventures! In the future. Well done!

  55. Have you heard of a mountain-man by the name of Tom Smith…aka Peg-Leg Pete?

    The historian David Lavender wrote about him in his book “Bent’s Fort”. He lost his leg while his beaver trapping party came under attack from Indians near the present Colorado/Wyoming border. It was a bad break that left his leg bones in splinters. His leg was amputated in camp but he didn’t want the opening seared closed so the healing process was not given much of a chance and the rest of the boys in his party figured he was a goner. Over that winter some Utes moved in with the trappers and they began to take an interest in Tom’s poorly healing amputation so they took turns chewing up some sort of weeds and plants they found and spitting the sticky, unsanitary mess onto Tom’s wound.

    By spring Tom was recovered and adroit at using a wooden peg-leg that he carved for himself. He finished out the next two seasons as a trapper and collected enough beaver to be highly competitive with the others in his party…No one knows for certain what weeds the Ute’s used on Tom…

    For several years Tom took up guiding exploration parties and pioneers…But then he fell on hard times and started kidnapping Indian children to sell as slave labor and stealing horses…

    As if that was not enough to turn society against him…he then claimed to have discovered some incredibly rich gold bearing quartz and sold maps to greenhorns that purported to lead them to his gold field…

    Reminds me of the folks trying to sell books that will show me how to solve Forrest’s poem and find the chest…WHAT??
    Why would I believe those guys…if it was a real solution they would have gone themselves to get the chest…wouldn’t they???

    • Hey Dal
      There may be a typo here.
      Is it “Bent’s Fort” you’re writing about?
      I think I may have read this book many years back. It’s a good read and helps paint the canvas of America. Is it the Fort on the Arkansas River that Bent sold to the US army? If I remember correctly the Comanche’s gave Bent a hard time. Tom that dirty rotten skunk must have been putting out some pretty foul odour. It amazes me how many from the past are glorified by people that have no clues as to what really happened. Very much like these charlatans/carpetbaggers you speak of. As consumers we control the market. As in all things we can make a difference if we don’t support ideas we don’t believe in. As for your second question maybe they don’t have the nerve to get up and walk out there themselves.
      “Kit Carson’s Own Story of His Life” is another good read.

      Bent’s Old Fort National Historic Site

    • Dal said- “As if that was not enough to turn society against him…he then claimed to have discovered some incredibly rich gold bearing quartz and sold maps to greenhorns that purported to lead them to his gold field…

      Reminds me of the folks trying to sell books that will show me how to solve Forrest’s poem and find the chest…WHAT??
      Why would I believe those guys…if it was a real solution they would have gone themselves to get the chest…wouldn’t they???”
      Why believe those guys?

      Maybe that’s not the best question to ask. Maybe those guys are doing what Peg-Leg Pete did as you suggested in saying they remind you of him.

      What you didn’t mention is that Peg-Leg and them should remind you of what’s written in the poem. Whoever the first stanza is written about clearly hinted at their secret like Peg-Leg did. It seems like a oversight to put down search book authors if they are following that same path that’s laid out in the poem.

      If we are to follow the poem’s clues precisely we may want to follow the first stanza precisely…ingredients anyone?

      Makes me think some don’t really immerse themselves when they read the poem.

      • So, FD – What secrets lie within stanza #1? I call it a prelude, since Forrest has said that Clue #1 starts with the start of Stanza #2.

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

        Yes, I typed it the way that it is written. No comma at the end of “there”.

        Not a complete sentence, but two lines that Forrest wanted us to think of as one.

        So, Forrest went alone INTO some place. Did he do this because he wanted to be alone, or is he telling us that this place is only big enough for one to fit? I think probably both. Did he mean that he needed to be alone only on the day that he secreted Indulgence, or way this a “Special Place” where he went to, to “Be alone with only his thoughts? I think probably both.

        So, we have a small space, not big enough for two that was Special to Forrest as a “Hidey” place. ” His Place Alone.”

        “I can keep my secret where,…” Such strange wording – almost like only a part of a thought – I can keep a secret as to where the treasure is located… or something like that. Or, maybe it IS a complete thought “I can keep my “Secret Where” Maybe “Secret where” is a a play on words. Maybe Forrest it making a “thing” out of the word “where”

        First line of Stanza #2 – “Begin it WHERE warm waters halt…”
        Is THIS the “Secret WHERE” Forrest is talking about? Begin it at the PLACE where warm waters halt… “…my “secret WHERE” – my secret PLACE. Is Forrest telling us that the final place WHERE Indulgence is secreted is very close to WHERE warn waters halt?

        Just a thought.

        “…And hint of riches new and old.” To me this refers to memories. New memories (recent memories) and memories that may go back eons and eons ago. Memories that the PLACE itself has of it’s beginnings in time – as well as Forrest’s memories of this place – some of which MAY go back to his youth.

        Just some rambling thoughts – JDA

          • Then we can agree to disagree FD. Time MAY tell which of us is correct – provided we live long enough to see Indulgence found – 🙂 JDA

        • JDA, as to starting with the first clue. The second word in the first clue is IT. If we are to believe that this meant to be a pronoun that refers to something previously mentioned how do we do that using the first clue only? The previously mentioned thing would have to come from the first stanza. If it is not a pronoun describing something previously mentioned then what is it? To me it seems odd to just make an assumption of what IT is an call it the journey, or the chase. Shouldn’t we use what is given to us in poem and not make assumptions?

          • Aaron;

            Never was very good at English. – “A pronoun that refers to something previously mentioned… DAH? What??

            “To me it seems odd to just make an assumption of what IT is an call it the journey, or the chase.” Well, I am odd then I to think that IT refers to the journey or the chase. I DO use what we are given, and I do NOT just make assumptions – I try to use what is logical, and English is NEVER a logical language 🙂 JDA

          • JDA, when I google “definition of it” I get:

            used to refer to a thing previously mentioned or easily identified.
            “a room with two beds in it”
            used to identify a person.
            “it’s me”

          • I suppose in your case you can call the chase something easily identified so that works. I don’t know that IT is meant to be that easy though.

          • Hi Aaron/All: I think there is some evidence based on Forrest’s writings that when he has an opportunity for a word or phrase to do “double-duty,” he occasionally exploits that. “Begin it” could be an example of this: “it” standing for both the journey/quest/challenge implied by the lead-in to the poem, but perhaps also referring to something in the preceding stanza (i.e., “it” having a specific antecedent).

          • That is very true Zap, and consider the quote from Moby Dickens Bookshop interview: “When you read the poem, it looks like just simple words there. But I guarantee you I worked on that thing. I felt like an architect drawing that poem. https://youtu.be/8RzrIu3hMec

            IT does look like a simple word that just means the chase, or the journey. And when read simply it can mean that, however since he basically tells us in this statement that words on that look simple on the surface can mean something else, because he worked on that thing, I think we should consider it.

          • Aaron… I believe that all of the words in the poem are important. I also think that what you are conveying in your post is pertinent. There has been a lot of discussion about the word *it* since the very beginning and the same arguments still prevail.

            That one word does seem to refer back to the first stanza and by doing so gives that stanza more importance than just a lead in or prelude to the rest of the poem. Stay the course and good luck…

          • Thanks Ken, I am trying to stay the course. Just searched last weekend and thought I had my best ideas yet, but again came up empty.

          • That’s awesome that you are getting out and testing the theories Aaron. That’s what it’s all about. I haven’t made a search trip in two seasons but have been tweaking a good plan that may hold some water when the time comes. I don’t believe there is any rush and certainly no need to go out with an incomplete set of directions to follow.

      • Since we’re talking about the poem and thought process. Who’s to say that it isn’t under something, or in some object.

        Looking up the definition of “structure” like he told us to do it states: a building or other object constructed from several parts.

        Several parts. So an object, with only one part isn’t considered a structure.


        • Other definitions include:
          the arrangement of and relations between the parts or elements of something complex.
          a building or other object constructed from several parts.
          the quality of being organized.
          verb: structure; 3rd person present: structures; past tense: structured; past participle: structured; gerund or present participle: structuring

          construct or arrange according to a plan; give a pattern or organization to.

          Lots of possibilities.

          Is a hole in the ground with a stone on top a structure? It is composed of a couple of elements. It depends on who or what dug the hole, and how the rock on top got there – accident or by design. Just askin’ JDA

  56. I just found the VOA story. It was posted today and the reporter did not tell us about its posting.
    Her story doesn’t contain any new info…but I do have some new info for you that was recorded at the same time…
    I also have the entire interview with Forrest that the VOA folks recorded…
    There was much more in the interview than appeared in the story…
    Which is always the case…
    Penelope’s story for VOA is here:

    • I always admired CEOs who would tell Mike Wallace at ’60 Minutes’ “sure, we’ll do an interview, but you have to air the whole thing.”

      They never would be interviewed.

    • interesting, the videographer just comes right out and says he was 79 when he hid it, I wonder if ff has given up any pretense about it being hidden during/after Aug of 2010.

      Well since you were there, did ff actually just say 79, instead of “79 or 80”.

    • I understand what you referred to earlier. I do hear some of the snippets of conversation that seemed to contain more and wonder what was said. Not holding out that there was a vital clue spilled in there that was left on the cutting room floor, but you are left wondering.
      Just curious. When you were there in Santa Fe last month Dal, you didn’t get a sense from Forrest that anyone was getting very close to finding it did you? Seemed like there has been an uptick in posts by Forrest and speculation on here even though the season is running short.

        • This is a good page. I like odds and ends. I’m not the sharpest tool in the shed. It takes me several times, over and over to learn a lesson. Thanks for letting me be a part of the thrill.

          • MJ;

            It depends on the tool. In stone sculpting, the sharpest took is not always what one looks for – it depends on the texture that is sought. Sculpting granite, a sharp tool is almost never used. You have to crush the granules, not shear them off. Look at all of the beautiful granite sculptures that have been made by “Not the sharpest tools.” Just sayin’ JDA

          • Believe it or not, a good piece of flaked obsidian is sharper than a stainless steel surgical scalpel, according to Dr. Bob Brier.

  57. I want to discuss the probability that when Forrest discussed a “kid” finding it, he was referencing a baby goat?

    What are your thoughts on this?

      • yeah I thought about the multiple references that you mention and obviously a goat can’t read. But a baby goat could stumble across it as baby goats are born near the summit of a mountain where they hang out during periods of times. Forrest did say it’s not at the top but could be close.

    • James;

      I know that dogs can be trained to sniff out almost any substance. Can a “kid” be trained to sniff out Indulgence? Kinda dfoubt it – 🙂 JDA

    • **** **** ****
      James C – “. . . . when Forrest discussed a “kid” finding it . . . .”
      **** **** ****

      It would help the discussion, James, if you could provide the actual quote(s) including ff’s use of the word “kid” that you want to discuss.

      Otherwise it’s just s’pposin’, not discussin’.

      • Here is a link to the quote: https://dalneitzel.com/2017/02/28/moby_dickens/

        Forrest: Do I think that kids …? You worry me a little. Yeah I think kids may have an advantage. Don’t expect me to explain that, but sure. Their eyes are better. They’re more agile. They have more energy. Why should a kid take backseat in the treasure hunt? Is that your daughter there?

        • Then no, not baby goats.

          ‘Cause when you’re treasure hunting the backseat is exactly where the baby goats belong.


        • Not the quote I was referring to. Will try to find it again. I thought it it pasted below my reference but I guess it did not.

          My apologies

    • I think she has the right state but for the wrong reasons, or maybe it is part of the way to see wwwh. I think there can be many ideas from that clue that leads you to that state. So after some thought, she just maybe right. Good thinking, Crysty.

    • Crysty’s explanation of WWWH is interesting and with imagination. Her comparison to the story of Moses adds to the depth. My original thoughts to Moses was when he was exiled into the desert. Mr. Fenn’s comment about not being in the desert took care of that thought.

    • Until the treasure is found and Forrest explains to everyone his clues we won’t know if this is correct.

      It is a very creative way of looking at WWWH.

    • Crysty – Awesome WWWH solution!

      I figured Moses and the parting of the Red Sea into my Baker’S Hole solve, also:


      And Gaius Julius Caesar is actually spelled:

      Caius Iulius Caesar > C. Iulius Caesar

      C is for Caius; my illustrious ancestor’s first name. And his legion ‘s flag was RED.

      Let my people go, Forrest! That is what I will say, when I cross the Madison River (my Rubicon) to retrieve the bronze chest at my Baker’S Hole hidey spot. Maybe in late October, when the Brown trout are spawning…

      I used to think the area of Hebgen Lake and the Madison River around Cabin Creek looked a little bit like the Red Sea…

    • Crysty – An A+ for out of the box thinking. So where WWsH is Colorado – OK, Now all you have to do is figure out which, among several thousands is the correct “Canyon Down.” Good luck lady. A nice presentation of your ideas – YEA for you – JDA

      • I don’t think Crysty’s theory can work, as she presented it, according to this f quote (7/1/2014- Tarry Scant # 6548)…

        You tell us that we should find “where warm waters halt” before trying to solve any of the other clues. Imagining that we haven’t seen the rest of the poem, and all we have to go on is:

        a. “begin it where warm waters halt” and

        b. “somewhere in the mountains north of Santa Fe”

        Do you think that we can confidently determine the starting place for your treasure trail? Steve

        No, if all you have to go on are those two clues you cannot proceed with confidence. Look at it this way. If you were making a cake and you left out a few ingredients, would you achieve your goal?

      • Hi Fundamental Design: that is one ATF that is ~possibly~ problematic. But she might be able to hang her hat on the adverb “confidently.” By folding in other elements (e.g. “Well Here’s Moses”) not mentioned in Steve’s a & b, she could add to that confidence. But yes, I think Forrest is strongly alluding to a missing element from the poem.

        There is the other problem that Colorado is huge — it is not a specific place. Recall the nearly 6-year-ago post by Dal in response to dollarbill: https://dalneitzel.com/2013/12/28/the-nine-clues-2/#comment-29511

        Some searchers will belly-ache that this is second-hand information, but just ask Dal if he uses such a broad answer for WWWH in any of his solutions. 😉

  58. Has there been any discussion about Forrest’s reply to a question about the path to the treasure?

    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 knowledge.f

    Does Forrest’s answer (There is no other way to my knowledge) infer that from WWWH to the Blaze there are no other roads/trails? That when reaching the end of the quest there isn’t another road that could have lead to maybe the Home of Brown?

    Suppose a searcher started WWWH at one end of a canyon and went into the canyon but stopped at the Home of Brown which could also be reached from the other end of the canyon. If they incorrectly identified the WWWH clue they still could end up at the Home of Brown. Does this constitute another way?

    I’m trying to figure out the significance of the statement “There is no other way to my knowledge”.


    • Kurt asked: “Does Forrest’s answer (There is no other way to my knowledge) infer that from WWWH to the Blaze there are no other roads/trails? That when reaching the end of the quest there isn’t another road that could have lead to maybe the Home of Brown?”

      I believe that is what it means Kurt. How else can this statement be taken? Not only do I believe that but I believe one needs to be BOTG very early in the clues.

      • Aaron,

        Thanks for your comment. My last BOTG was on the Going to the Sun Road which can be accessed from either the west or east end. Based on the comment from Forrest and your interpretation this could not possibly be a correct solve. If the Home of Brown was along the road it could be accessed from both directions.


    • Hi Kurt: “Does Forrest’s answer (There is no other way to my knowledge) infer that from WWWH to the Blaze there are no other roads/trails? That when reaching the end of the quest there isn’t another road that could have lead to maybe the Home of Brown?”

      I don’t believe we can draw that conclusion from this exchange. I believe Forrest could simply be saying that the only way that we as searchers will successfully navigate to the treasure chest’s location is by following Forrest’s clues in order. For any spot on earth, there are countless ways to get there since it depends on where you start.

      “Suppose a searcher started WWWH at one end of a canyon and went into the canyon but stopped at the Home of Brown which could also be reached from the other end of the canyon. If they incorrectly identified the WWWH clue they still could end up at the Home of Brown. Does this constitute another way?”

      I think Forrest is implying that the only way you’re going to “put in” at the correct location is if you solved the clues preceding “Put in below the home of Brown.” Doesn’t necessarily mean you have to physically navigate that same path, but you’re going to have to have solved all the clues to land at the right spot.

      For instance, suppose WWWH is the ever-popular Madison Junction, “canyon down” is Madison Canyon, and hoB is 7-mile-bridge (for whatever reason). If the correct answer to “put in below” means downstream of 7-mile-bridge, and you happen to be driving from West Yellowstone, there is no need to go all the way to WWWH, only to turn around and come back to hoB.

      I believe that home of Brown cannot be solved in isolation, and that even solving WWWH is not sufficient to uniquely identify the answer to “Put in below the home of Brown” with confidence. No short cuts.

      • It is true that FF’s answer doesn’t always align with the question perfectly but if you consider the question that was asked:

        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?

        He is being asked about physically following the clues. And then FF answers with “they must be followed in order” to a question about physically following the clues, it is very hard for me to believe that there is physically another way in.

      • Hi Aaron: with few exceptions, there is ALWAYS more than one way to get to a spot on the map. Some ways may be easier, safer, or more direct than others, but if one were to eliminate all places in the Rockies that can be reached by multiple routes, then you’d probably be left with less than 0.01% of the search area.

        • True Zap, however if you combine with the most direct route quote with this one, along with the question being about physically following the clues, it is hard for me to imagine being able to take another route other than one that requires following all of the clues.

    • “A: The clues should be followed in order Curtis. There is no other way to my knowledge.f”

      Nobody can say for certain, but my opinion is that Forrest did not answer the question as it was intended. I think Forrest was saying that the searcher has to figure it all out themselves, starting at the first clue and finding his own way to the last one.

      Some people will agree with me and others will disagree. So you have to decide for yourself. Consensus never helped a genius.

      • Muset,

        I tend to feel the same way. Forrest has said someone won’t just stumble across the treasure which implies the clues should be followed but that doesn’t mean there may be more than one way to reach the HOB. A searcher may not realize that they are at the HOB unless they follow the clues.


    • One way to look at as zap has suggested in looking at my GNP solve.

      I begin at the east end of Going to the Sun Road and take it in the canyon down (go west into the canyon). If I interpret “put in below the Home of Brown” as park my car AFTER the Home of Brown (Haystack Creek) then my solve could be correct up to this point. There is parking after the creek.

      However, if I start at the west end of GNP and take it in the canyon down there is no place to park AFTER Haystack creek. Even though I am in the possibly correct spot I have approached from the wrong direction so I could easily drive right by the third clue.

      So either it is possible to reach the HOB from more than one direction, maybe along a road, or it lies along a road with only one way in and out.


    • He said “the clues should be followed in order”, NOT -I followed the clues in order- . NOR – the clues MUST be followed in order- – I’m in the “he dodged the question” camp, but that is a judgement call. After all, this is a written exchange. But I would consider the quote in its most straight forward interpretation when evaluating the pros/cons of a potential solve.

      BTW, the quote is incorrect as posted — it’s knowlege with no d.


  59. Given that “flag” in active tenses can refer to halting and weakening (at a minimum), this sounds like a good idea to explore further.
    Thanks to Crysty for a great entry point! (I don’t have a Google acct so can’t comment on her video)

    • This is awesome. I entered and donated on day 1!

      Thanks Copper Dan and thank you for promoting this Dal. Great cause

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