Can Solving Rubik’s Cube Help Us?

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AUGUST 2019
by dal

 

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That’s Emma in front.Emma is Josh’s daughter. In the back, that’s Josh on the left. Josh is Lory and Steve’s son. Lory is next to Josh. Then me, and Steve on the far right.

This is Steve and Lory Barnes’ family. I met up with them the other day in Fairhaven. You might remember Steve. I posted a link to his youtube video on Odds n Ends several months ago. In the video Steve explains the similarities between solving the poem and solving Rubik’s Cube. I thought it was worth its own page on the blog so here it is…

In the video below, Steve shows us how to go about solving the cube while telling us how he believes the poem can be solved. He can obviously do two things at once.

Forrest liked this video. Steve is a good presenter. Lory is a good searcher.

By the way, if you fly Horizon Air look for Steve…and bring your cube along…!!

-dal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Are We Looking For?…

binocs

AUGUST 2019
by Seeker

 

What are we looking for?
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

Many want to believe we are only looking for a 10” sq. piece of realty, I can’t disagree more.

We have been told; Forrest knew where he wanted to hide the chest… in a place he feels, is special to him. We have been told that without the first clue we have nothing… might as well stay home. I believe the first clue is this place Forrest is referring to. For this idea to be true, one needs to consider the possibility that; not only do the remaining clues revolve around the first and are within the location of the first clue… but also the possibility the trove is within the same location.

For clarification; “Location” is meant as an area vs. “Place” being a position within a location. However, “place” has other meanings and usages that I feel are being used in the poem.

With these thoughts in mind… a particular reading of the poem appears. We know the first clue is represented by the line “Begin it where warm waters halt” Then we have “And take it in the canyon down” For the idea that WWsH is Forrest “special place” the wording or phrasing of “take it in” [ by definition of; ‘take something in’ ] means to see something, to view, to gaze at… But now we have to consider the line “Not far, but too far to walk” Lets break this line down… “Not far” is seemingly self-explained… Something that is not far [distance away] and more than likely, seen from where the viewer/searcher is.

“but too far to walk” – “But” seems to imply [ one definition] excluding, ‘used to indicate the impossibility of anything other than what is being stated’ In this case, the use of “but” is telling the reader to exclude the movement of walk or walking as something that should be done… There is no movement of a searcher thus far in the poem, or don’t walk away from this clue.

“Put in below the home of Brown” – This is the last line in this stanza, and a stand-alone sentence. I believe this was deliberately set this way. The perceiving lines implant the notion that a searcher is at the first clue’s reference, is to view something, in or down in a manner involving said canyon… with no movement of a searcher being described by the poem. “Put in” acts the same as “take it in” – to look… put in, set your eyes upon… and I think is the beginning of the observational part of the solve.  {You may not like the usages of these words and phrases in this manner… yet, those are the definitions and meanings, in plain English}

Should a searcher discover the reference of hoB… the idea is; to look below this reference, while being consistent with the method of what the poem might be relaying to this point.

~ Summary of stanza 2; Be at WWsH location, view and/or observe the place of CD [a direction] and locate the hoB reference… [which might only be seen ‘correctly’ from ground level].

While a searcher has not left the location of the first clue at this point… found hoB… most likely by use of imagination of the land feature… we come to stanza 3 and what this stanza might imply the planning part of the solve.

Most readers / searcher automatically refer this stanza as more movement through the landscape [stomping point to point of hopeful clue references by the possible misinterpretation of “take it in”]. I believe this is where most, if not all, left the poem, line of thinking. The word “Place” in the line “From there it’s no *place* for the meek” might not be referring to a place / location, but rather, “a situation” [Place definition; put in, cause to be in a particular position or situation] a searcher is now presented to be in, to finalize the task. This *place* “situation” is needed to be understood as; what is expected of a searcher to do. I believe this is indicated by a later line in the poem; “Your Effort will be worth the cold…” [possibly in the form of a hint].

In the simplest of ideas / terms… cold is of a change in temperature and/or of emotion. Both of which I think is meant for the line “FTINPFTM”. The cold of the night [compared to; day / sunshine] and a situation a person who is meek, timid, unfamiliar with, being alone in the mountains at night. This same line of thinking can also be reference by “If you are brave and in the wood”

The line “The end is ever drawing nigh” would reference the end of the night and the new day on the rise. This might be in reference to the idea of “hint of riches new and old”… out with the old and in with the new [day], idea. As well as the thought and Elliot’s quote, * …to know the place for the first time* This brings us to the line “There’ll be no paddle up your creek” In this line I believe the intent is to explain a specific time of year when the correct solution can be “complete ( completed?). {Yep, I know, that’s won’t go over well with most. But you have to ask, why fenn followed his own created clues?}

We have thus far, the notion of a situation is; an overnight stay in the RM’s, a morning sunrise, however, we may need to know when to view this… on what day… to make the poem/clues lead precisely to the hidey spot. The Summer month of June is known for the Summer Solstice… in the book [TTOTC] June never got paddles because she was always right- a subtle hint? Not intended, but will help?] June is the correct month to “complete” the poem. I think the poem relays that we have now discovered why hoB, if known of, would lead right to the chest… hoB is the blaze. An object, that it utilized with the morning sunrise on the first day of Summer. “IF you’ve been wise and found the blaze, Look quickly down, your quest to cease, But tarry scant with marvel gaze…”

The above section of stanza 4 seems to imply we do just that… Look in quickly [as time related action] down [ below the hoB/the blaze] for our quest to be “completed?” – But tarry [linger] scant [a small amount of time] with marvel gaze [ gaze meaning; look steadily, observe, to “study”] … just take the chest and go in peace.

By now some might be asking about the line; “Just heavy loads and water high” This line I believe revolves around the entire concept of WWsH and hoB. HoB references heavy loads and water high references WWsH. Whatever these physical land features are… the poem is seemingly built / designed around “just” them… Forrest’s special place.

In summary: Learn/discover this location of all the clues is first and foremost [The question is; how do we learn this?]. WWsH is the critical clue in the “action” of “finding” the blaze and resting place of the chest… “all the information to *find* the treasure is in the poem”.

HOWEVER… we have been warned that this process of *finding* the chest is not going to be direct without “certainty of the location beforehand”
(TFTW – Statement made on map insert)

These two comments are not one in the same. While we need WWsH to get us closer to the chest… but we need to know where to find the clues first. The two comments, while separate, work hand in hand to find the correct search location and the correct WWsH out of the many.

~ Locate/learn where the location of all the clues are at, find WWsH by learning of this location, view in the direction of the canyon-down, spot below the hoB, observe the morning sunrise of first day of summer, watch the shadow of the blaze being cast to the hide….

Note; “begin IT” is the catch 22… in this theory, IT refers to what is expected of the searcher. IT refers to “observing and planning” for. *** begin observing where warm waters halt ***

Conclusion; No one, not little Indy, a boy from dad’s hometown or someone from anywhere Earth… “cannot get closer than the first two clues” using a map or GE [the book, GE and/or a good map get us to this point].

A searcher must be on site to *complete the poem*[ Marry the CLUES to A PLACE on a map] and this might have been the same for Forrest… he completed his blueprint [from memory] by following his own created instructions / clues / blueprint.

He completed all the ingredients to now, hide the trove, where his clues took him… to a 10” spot within his special place.

-Seeker

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chase-opoly…

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“Chase-opoly: The Thrill of the Chase” board game

Do you love the Chase and want something to do in the off season?

 

KPro and Cowlazars have developed a custom edition of Chaseopoly!  The game board, properties, hint and clue cards, pieces are all customized for the Thrill of the Chase!

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Here is a short video explaining the concept and the game:

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$49.99 game, $15 shipping, $10 handling
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Make checks payable to KPROCOW LLC and mail to:

Cowlazars
3870 East Flamingo Rd
Ste A2 pmb 212
Las Vegas, Nevada 89121

questions? email:
chaseopoly@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

The “Give Me a Break” Solution…

hl

August 2019
by dal

 

This is an old solution that I’m tired of hearing about. I’ve had numerous folks (maybe a dozen) tell me this is THE solution but when they arrived at the hidey spot the chest wasn’t there so someone must have already removed it. I hate that…

Forrest has said the chest is still where he left it many times since the first searchers arrived at this hidey spot so we know they are wrong but what surprises me is that folks didn’t understand that this was not a good hidey place even before they arrived there.

What I’ve submitted below is a compilation of many different solutions that have started out in the same place and ended in the same place. There have been slight variations in the clues between the beginning and the end but by and large this same solution comes to me more often than you’d believe.

I call it the “Simple Solution”. Because that’s what it is, very simple and straight forward, even logical…up to its end.

Step one of any solution is in identifying the place to begin.

You certainly won’t get to the chest by following the directions in the poem if you start out at a place different than the place Forrest intended the directions to start from.

I think this is self evident but let me explain…

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If someone gives you directions on how to find the Dairy Queen on Elm and Second Streets based on the fact that you are starting from the 7/11 on Box Street…you won’t end up in the correct place if you start from the 7/11 on Third Street instead. You’d need a different set of directions to get to the Dairy Queen on Elm Street from the Third Street 7/11.

So..the correct starting place is essential…Therein lies the rub that leads wise men to the dump instead of the palace.

Lets Begin:

Begin it where warm waters halt

Tens of thousands (I’m guessing at the number) of folks over the past 8 years have used Madison Junction in Yellowstone National Park as the place to begin. This is simply because two very warm Yellowstone rivers, the Gibbon and the Firehole end in this place and it is the beginning of the Madison River. 

There is a whole litany of reasons why folks might choose to start in this place:

1. This is a geographical place where two warm rivers end (warm waters halt) and one river starts, “it”

2. This place is known to millions of people as the end of the Gibbon and Firehole Rivers

3. This place is known to millions more people as the start of the Madison River

4. This place is known to tens of millions of people as the place where Yellowstone N.P. was born

5. This is a place Forrest is unquestionably familiar with

6. Forrest mentions fishing on all three of these rivers

7. Forrest wrote about walking in the Madison with his raft in TFTW

8. Yellowstone National Park is talked about extensively in all three of Forrest’ s memoirs

9. To me it is a logical and practical place for Forrest’s WWWH

10. This location is one of the early places that many searchers used for their WWWH and Forrest told us in a comment in September of 2012:

“Several months ago some folks correctly mentioned the first two clues to me in an email and then they went right past the other seven, not knowing that they had been so close. Alas, and dame fortune, so often a fickle and seductive wench, never spun her wheel to lure them back.”

And at least one practical reason why it does not work:

1. Forrest said “There are many places in the Rocky Mountains where warm waters halt, and nearly all of them are north of Santa Fe.”

This suggests to me that such a unique place, where two rivers end and a new one starts, is very unlikely to be one of many in the Rocky Mountains. I cannot think of another place where two warm rivers end and a new river begins…

But, what the heck…I’m playing the odds. Ten reasons for and only one against in my opinion…Let’s go with it.

  

And take it in the canyon down,

Screen Shot 2019 08 09 at 9 20 09 PM

USGS Topo Map showing Madison Junction with the Madison Canyon labeled just downstream of the junction.

I believe “it” refers to the Madison River.  “Canyon” refers to the Upper Madison Canyon which starts immediately below Madison Junction and “down” refers to downstream. So I take the Madison River, downstream into the Upper Madison Canyon…and all the way through that canyon…and keep going about 17 miles to Hebgen Lake.

Not far, but too far to walk.

I don’t want to walk 17 miles. So I’ll drive.

Put in below the home of Brown.

In this solution the home of Brown is Hebgen Lake for a couple of reasons:

1. Hebgen Lake is considered a Brown trout angler’s nirvana

2. Brown’s grow to be the largest and most desirable in the secret depths of the lake

The reason for this is:

The Mayflies.

Mayfly9

There are many species of Mayflies, more than 2,500 but they all seem to look fairly similar. Frankly, you’d have to care more about bugs than most normal people do to tell them all apart. Chances are that if you live somewhere on earth…particularly if you live near a lake…you have seen Mayflies…perhaps swarms of them around your porch light in the evening, in late spring and summer. 

Depending on where you hail from, the buggers are also known as Fishflies, Shadflies, Lakeflies and around Hebgen Lake by their Genus name, Callibaetis or Spinners. I can remember the air being thick with Mayflies flapping about over the shoreline of Indian Lake in Manistique in the summers when I was a kid. Swarms so thick I could smell them. They brought an odor like the lake from which they had just emerged. It seemed like millions of them appeared from nowhere. 

In truth they had just completed a journey started a year or two earlier when Mayfly eggs sank from the choppy surface of the lake and ended up in the sediment below, where they would spend the next few weeks or sometimes 24 months (depending on the species) in various states of development and then miraculously emerge again on the weedy surface as adult Mayflies. On the surface they can take off immediately…or float around for awhile contemplating their new abdomen or even climb atop a tall weed for a view of their newly acquired world before taking flight. Their shared timing is impeccable as tens of thousands, perhaps millions, do this over a course of days in the same lake….creating swarms of Mayflies, magnificent to some…alarming to others….and then, suddenly stop. They all die, falling to the ground where they clog drains, cover windshields and stink up the neighborhood.

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Mayflies emerge from the bottom of the lake. This is a bug eating trout’s ultimate buffet.

Typically, adult Mayflies only live a day or two and in that time they have a natural inclination to do a lot of breeding and deposit eggs on the surface of the lake…where the eggs sink to the bottom…etc, etc.

Mayflies, of course, are not the only bug to emerge like this from Montana lakes. Hebgen is a virtual bug making machine and during the times of emergence it becomes a feeding bazaar for bug eating trout. In Hebgen Lake the trout are called “Gulpers” for the sound they make as they rise to the surface and greedily grab their victims before the insects can fly off to my front porch light and dazzle me with their numbers.

The “hatch” as it’s called when the bugs take flight is a magical and frenetic time of year for trout and also for anglers. In Hebgen there is more than one hatch per year and generally they last a very short time. Between hatches Hebgen Lake fishers tend to drink beer, eat chicken, read Orvis catalogues, carve whirligigs for their front yard and wax unpoetically about large fish they cannot prove they caught.

ffg

The fly angler’s goal is to fool the trout by using a lure, called a “fly” that resembles (sometimes pathetically) a Mayfly, Stonefly, Midge, Dun, Trico or some other bug in one of its various stages and throwing it into the lake at the appropriate time of year. This is called “fishing”. Sometimes you have to wonder what kind of nitwits fish must be to mistake what the fishers toss into the water for a real insect…

boobee

But understand, the fish are in a frenzy…caution to the wind…eat up boys while the eating is good. Hopefully one of those frenzied big Gulpers will spot your fly and go for it, you will land it and take a selfie to prove to your undeserving peers that you are among the greatest of fishers.

gulper

and then release it back into the lake and try again for a bigger one, or, if you are a fish connoisseur and brought your salt and pepper along… motor quickly to shore, start a fire and have a lunch of freshly grilled trout in the Rocky Mountains north of Santa Fe.

fishy

Unlike stream fishing, you need a boat to get out on the lake to catch trout this way. Some fly fishers would never actually step into a boat. That’s for bait fishers…a lower class of so-called fishers…but the bragging rights are significant if you land a big Gulper, so the temptation can be overwhelming.

To get back to the home of Brown
Because of the magnitude of the “hatches” on Hebgen Lake, the trout grow large and it’s a great place to fish during the heat of summer when the fish above the lake flee the warmed up streams for something deeper and cooler and bug infested…Fishers surge to Hebgen when the “hatch is on” for the thrill of catching a BIG Brown, and many will. Hebgen Lake Browns average 19 inches vs Rainbows a couple inches smaller…so…Hebgen is considered the home of big Browns…Ask any trout catcher who lives nearby where the Home of Brown is and they will yammer on for hours about the great gulpers they caught on Hebgen Lake.

Putting in Below

The Madison River enters Hebgen Lake at its southern end and exits at the north. Prior to the dam the lake was simply a wide spot in the Madison River. Montana Power added a dam at the southern end in 1914 to make a reservoir that is used to regulate the flow for reservoirs and hydro projects further downstream. They named the reservoir after Max Hebgen…who, unfortunately didn’t live long enough to see the project completed.

Putting in below the home of Brown means putting in below the dam.

How far below the dam do we put in???

The poem tells us exactly…

From there it’s no place for the meek,
The end is ever drawing nigh;
There’ll be no paddle up your creek,
Just heavy loads and water high.

Okay…stay with me here.

Screen Shot 2019 08 09 at 9 51 45 PM

Hebgen Lake Dam…see that big white thing in the center of the photo? That’s where the water from the dam is returned to the Madison…That’s the outflow. That’s directly below the dam…NOT Forrest’s special place. Don’t look there.

I’m going to say that the poem is telling me to put in DIRECTLY below the home of Brown…Immediately below the dam…where the meek won’t go…where you certainly can’t paddle upstream and where the water comes from high and the stream bed is filled with rocks and heavy loads. it’s a scary place below a dam where the tail water rushes out creating a lot of noise and where the potential for dam failure seems imminent and death feels just an earthquake away.

And is there a blaze…

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

You bet. Lots of them. If you’re brave enough to walk around down there you’ll find blazes of all sorts, sizes, shapes and denominations depending on your particular belief about what a blaze could be…

But you should have realized before you started even looking for a blaze that this could never be the spot where Forrest expected to take his last breath…expected to be his last sight of this world. Who in hell wants to die below a noisy dam?

There is a trail made by fishers everywhere you walk down there and a road about 60ft away. No animals down there either. They have better sense…and you can’t smell anything but lake water.

and this is where the set of directions fails quickly and makes no sense.

I agree that up to this point a case could be made….but this is not the hidey spot…

So why is it that I get several folks each year who want me to believe that they went down to this place because it absolutely fits ALL the clues in the poem…yet the chest was not there …

So they claim that clearly, someone got here ahead of them and removed it…

Why does it not occur to these folks that this is not Forrest’s “special” place? He never hid his chest here. He never intended to die here.

Come on folks. Get over yourselves…

This might be a simple solution but it’s simply wrong

-dal

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Marvel Gaze…the song

guitar

AUGUST 2019
by Forrest Black

 

Forrest Black sent me this song he recorded with his wife in Germany. It is their musical interpretation of the poem. I don’t know if they live near the Black Forrest. He did mention that he has not been able to search for the chest yet. The song is titled “Marvel Gaze”.

Turn your sound on and click HERE to listen to their song.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tarry Scant With Marvel Gaze…

tty

JULY 2019
by dal

I’ve been listening to folks anatomize this phrase in Forrest’s poem for about eight years now. We searchers, it seems, struggle endlessly with the possibilities of attaching some kind of elaborate meaning to uncommon expressions, and there appears to be no shortage of either uncommon expressions or eccentric opinions in The Thrill of the Chase.

I too have had my Byzantine moments with those five simple words. I have struggled with what they could add up to and how they might help me find Indulgence. But when all is said and done, after thrashing my tired old brain with endless dead end theories, I generally return to my familiarity with Forrest and his habits, for a “true north” answer.

There are two characteristics and one position of Forrests that I relentlessly draw upon when attempting to analyze anything Forrest has spoken or written:

1. Forrest likes words
2. Forrest likes simple
3. Forrest likes to say, “Who said I couldn’t?”

Tarry scant with marvel gaze…

I believe Forrest is saying “Take your time and enjoy the lovely view”
How did I arrive at that???

Tarry scant…

Tarry in this case matches the word “linger” or “dawdle” or even “rest”.

Scant is most commonly heard in recipes…as in “a scant cup of milk”, or “use a scant teaspoon of lemon juice”. It means “nearly”. In other words use almost a cup of milk or use just short of a teaspoon of lemon.

So tarry scant means to “dawdle some” or “linger a bit” or another way of saying it might be, take your time but don’t take all the time…don’t take all day…

The question now becomes…why linger here? Why is Forrest suggesting that we should rest in this spot? In fact he is telling us something important about the hidey spot.

Moving on to “marvel gaze”…

This is the reason we will want to not be in a rush to leave the hidey place…

“Marvel” is short for marvelous..something amazing…a spectacle…

“Gaze” refers to staring…looking…gawking…

So marvel gaze means to “look at the marvelous view”…

In its entirety, “tarry scant with marvel gaze”, simply means to “linger a bit and look at the beautiful view”.

The hidey spot is…as Forrest has described it in the New Mexico Tourism video…to paraphrase his description…a lovely place to behold.

This is the antithesis of what many folks have interpreted that phrase to mean for many years…most have put forward that we should not linger at the lovely view…and we should grab the chest and move quickly away…

Others have tried to attach wholly unrealistic (in my opinion) meanings to the phrase that have to do with descriptions of the blaze or just odd nonsense describing anything from black tar to white slabs…but these have nothing to do with what Forrest intended that phrase to mean, in my opinion.

As mentioned a moment ago, most searchers seem to believe that those five words meant we should grab the chest and get out of the area quickly. The unanswered question was always, “why”. Why do we need to hurry out of this place where we found the chest? Is there danger at the hidey spot? 

I believe the answer is that he is not telling us to take the chest and move quickly on. He is instead saying, take your time. You’ve worked hard to find the chest and now is the moment to relax and enjoy the view.

How is this useful in helping us search for the chest?…well I believe the chest is in a beautiful place with a wondrous view, just as Forrest said in the New Mexico Tourism video. So I should eliminate any final resting place for Indulgence that does not meet those expectations. If the clues lead me to a pile of trash or an urban street, or anywhere not bucolic and marvelous, I need to start over with my solution.

We have suspected this all along. We always believed that Forrest would choose a place for his final resting place that was lovely and peaceful and “marvelous”…and I believe he has even told us that much in a single five word phrase in the poem…

So in my mind we should all stop puzzling over the meaning of those five words and get on with finding the correct place to start…

Tarry scant with marvel gaze…
Take your time and enjoy the view…

The New Mexico Tourism video can be found HERE

 

 

 

 

 

 

FFGM Treasure Hunt #11

JULY 2019
BY DAL and JENNY

 

The stone has been located and the medallion claimed by Sam.
Thanks to all who participated…

 

To claim the medallion you must find the stone with the sequence of numbers and letters written on it. Then email the sequence to me. If you are the first to find the stone and email me the numbers and letters, in order, written on the stone, I will mail you the medallion.

This stone is hidden in the Cascade Range of mountains which stretch from Northern California into British Columbia. To find out where EXACTLY to look in that large area: decode the information below, read the poem and watch the video. Then retrieve the stone and email me what is written on it.

email: dal at lummifilm dot com

FF Gold Medallions image 1024x562

FFGM11a

 

 

The FFGM Treasure Hunts are brought to you by Jenny Kile at www.mysteriouswritings.com.
Jenny hid the original 10 medallions in the Appalachian Valley. All have since been claimed.
Jenny was kind enough to share a medallion for hiding in the Northwest with me.
This FFGM Treasure Hunt #11 is the result of Jenny’s generosity and her desire to share the fun with others.

-dal

 

The stone has been located and the medallion claimed by Sam.
Thanks to all who participated…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chase Research Project…

bbwerChase Research Project

I am a psychology professor in my fifth year of the chase trying to identify factors that compel our involvement in the chase.  I have tried to estimate the size of our Chase community using a random survey of 1,000 workers on Amazon’s Mechanical Turk. It appears that we may be substantially larger in size than Forrest’s estimate of ~350,000.  I’m asking more seasoned searchers such as yourself to take 5-10 minutes to complete this same anonymous survey. The data will hopefully be of interest to our community. Please complete the survey just once and not share the questions with others until data completion has been completed.  Just cut and paste this link in your browser if interested:

https://und.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_3n73uFTL1keqrgV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My Church is in the Mountains…

fiddle

Since I needed something to do to keep myself occupied while waiting to search for the treasure, I decided to write a country song about Forrest’s story. It is based on the original plan where he dies at the end! Sorry Forrest, but in the interest of producing a good country ballad, I had to have you die on top of the treasure.

It is longer than the typical song, but I think it would make a good ballad if someone is willing to put it to music. I don’t know how to write music for this, but I can hear the song in my head, so I made a recording of me singing it. However, I’m not very good, so I’m not prepared to release that at this time. If anyone happens to know a good country singer who could do justice to it, please forward it on. Preferably someone who is already acquainted with the Forrest Fenn story. Maybe it will generate a few bucks to help fund my next boots on the ground!

David Thalheimer

——————————————–

Lyrics to “My Church is in the Mountains”
Copyright 2019, by David Thalheimer (Country music played with guitar and fiddle)

I was just a boy from Texas try’n to do my momma proud,
But I’m not one to follow rules and get lost in the crowd.
My teachers tried to school me but I barely made the grade,
You’d find me shootin’ marbles or just sitting in the shade.

My father taught me everything I’d really need to know,
Wyoming and Montana were the places we would go.
We’d hike and camp and fish and hunt and spend our days together,
Exploring all the wonders there, no matter what the weather.

He set me on a path of new discovery and growth,
Where did we all come from and where do we want to go?

My church is in the mountains where the air is cold and pure,
My church is in the valleys where the water’s clear for sure,
My church is in the forest where the critters jump and play,
Yeah my church is in the mountains where I’m coming home to stay.

I served my country in the war, the one called Vietnam,
We all drank down the Cool Aid as they loaded up the bombs.
I flew real good, they knew I could, hit targets on the nose,
But who I put beneath my wings, only heaven knows.

One day I saw a waterfall so beautiful and clear,
Between the bullets and the bombs, what was it doin’ here?
I had to go back down there to get a closer look,
Found graves of unknown soldiers — that time almost forsook.

Why do we keep on fighting, why can’t we get it right?
Let’s leave our fellow man alone, when will they see the light?

My church is in the mountains where the air is cold and pure,
My church is in the valleys where the water’s clear for sure,
My church is in the forest where the critters jump and play,
Oh my church is in the mountains where I’m coming home to stay.

Went home to the good ol’ USA to start again anew,
Found a place in Santa Fe and somehow made it through.
I hustled high and hustled low and made it on my own,
Dug for ancient treasures that were hidden in the stone.

The wife and kids were happy and for more I could not pray,
Finally, it looked like it was all goin’ my way.

Then the doctors told me — it was likely I would die,
The cancer, it had taken hold, I’d better say goodbye.
But I’m not one to follow rules and do just what they say,
If I’m gonna have to go, I’m doin’ it my way.

My church is in the mountains where the air is cold and pure,
My church is in the valleys where the water’s clear for sure,
My church is in the forest where the critters jump and play,
Yeah my church is in the mountains where I’m coming home to stay.

I got myself a chest of old and filled it up with gold,
And jewels like you have never seen, my story on a scroll.
I took it to the mountains to my favorite secret place,
To lay my old bones on it, which forever they would grace.

They say to leave it all behind, you just can’t take it with you,
But I’m not one to follow rules, to me I must be true.

So hear me all and listen good, this promise I will make,
If you can find my treasure trove, it’s here for you to take.
Just leave my bones to rest here in the rain and in the snow,
Where did we all come from and where do we want to go?

My church is in the mountains where the air is cold and pure,
My church is in the valleys where the water’s clear for sure,
My church is in the forest where the critters jump and play,
Now my church is in the mountains — where I’ve come home to stay.