La Caja Pueblo Ruins – Final Chapter…

SUBMITTED May 2016
by CYNTHIA

 

Continued from Part Three…

It was January when I last published Part Three about searching La Caja Pueblo Ruins. I was still trying to get to the “Imaginary Line” where the Santa Cruz River enters the inlet to Santa Cruz Lake. This area of shoreline, I thought, would be directly below the ruins, my home of Brown.

I made an attempt to access this spot in late February via the Debris Basin Trail. My day was cut short when I found a German Shepard caught in an animal trap just to the side of the trail. She was big and beautiful and timid… her foot was pinched and she couldn’t escape. Eventually, I found help, and she was released, unharmed. I wanted to take her home, but she bolted as soon as she was free.

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In early March I decided to try a different approach. I parked at the gate to the Santa Cruz Lake Overlook Campground and walked back the road. My plan was to walk across the ridge tops to the inlet and look down at the shoreline at this imaginary line. As I ambled along the edge of the road that day, I found a $10 dollar bill lying there. Another five yards and I found a $5 dollar bill, and then a trail of $1 dollar bills…six of them in succession crossing the road to the weeds on the other side. A total of $21, I was thrilled. I mean, ecstatic…you’d think I had found the treasure.

I continued my hike towards the edge of the ridge-top. Before I got to the final spot, I realized this was too difficult for Fenn to have made two trips…I retreated once again.

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The Final Chapter

Here it is the middle of May. Despite being pretty positive by now that Fenn did not hide his treasure chest here, I couldn’t get it out of my head. I had to get to this area to see it for myself.

Plan D: A couple days ago Michelle bought a kayak. I suggested we take it to Santa Cruz Lake for its maiden voyage. I’d drop her off at the boat ramp, where she’d set off and paddle to the opposite shore at the far end of the lake. While she paddled, I’d drive around to the trailhead up by the Overlook Campground, and Molly and I would hike down to the stand of cottonwoods where she would meet us. She agreed.

That night I could barely sleep. I knew, or was at least pretty sure, that I was finally going to get to see the “imaginary line”, both shorelines beneath the La Caja Pueblo Ruins where the inlet meets the river.

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It was a gorgeous May day with no wind…perfect for kayaking. Plan D started off perfectly. Molly watched from the end of the pier as Michelle paddled away.

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It was an eight mile drive from the boat ramp, around the winding road through Cundiyo, and back the dirt road to the Overlook Campground and Trailhead. In less than fifteen minutes, Molly and I were headed down the trail. The Sangre de Cristos stood out on the horizon to the east, still displaying pockets of snow on the Truchas Peaks.

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As Molly and I made our way down the twisting trail, we could see Michelle off in the distance, waiting for us to meet at our destination beneath the stand of cottonwoods.

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Click to enlarge and read text

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Michelle in yellow kayak on right, approaching the shoreline.

ImageExtract-008 Our plan was under way. Michelle was checking the depth of the water along the shoreline. I wanted to wade to the inlet, if possible.

ImageExtract-009 I carefully made my way to the water’s edge as Michelle continued around to the inlet. I removed the bottoms of my pant legs, and exchanged my hiking boots for old, worn- out sandals to wade through the water.

Molly and I waited patiently for Michelle to return and give us the news. Was the water shallow enough the entire way to the inlet to wade along the shoreline? I crossed my fingers as my excitement swelled…

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Michelle returned with bad news. The shallow water soon gave way to really deep- looking water…no wading was possible after about ten yards. I told her to paddle to the inlet and river and asked her to take a lot of pictures, especially the shorelines and bluffs, etc, anything that could be construed as a blaze, or anything that looked like a “special place”.

As she paddled away, I had a good idea…Molly and I would climb up the hillside and cross the ridges on top, and then find a ravine or run-off to get back down to the water’s edge nearer the inlet/river. I was in such a hurry I didn’t bother to put my hiking boots back on. I clutched them in my left hand as I looked for a path upwards.

At first this seemed doable but then the terrain became really steep with scree filling the run-offs that I was trying to climb up. The footing turned treacherous and my feet slid out from under me every few steps. I was even using my hands on the ground as I crawled along and up. I smelled skunk and hoped it was the vegetation and not the animal. I had lost track of Molly and hoped that she didn’t find the skunk, or any rattlesnakes, or anything else. I now was consumed with only my safety as I approached 40 feet up the bluff/hillside and across the first ridge.

Soon I could hear Michelle shouting to me from below…I couldn’t see her but knew she had come back to where we had been. She told me to turn around and go back to the cottonwood stand immediately. She found Molly perched precariously on a crumbly-looking pinnacle 30 feet above her, with only rocks beneath, not even the water. If she fell there, it would be bad.

I wasn’t sure of my retreat path, but decided to try to go down the same ravine of scree I had used to ascend. Almost immediately, my feet went out from under me and I started to slide downward on my knees and elbows…I grabbed a pine tree branch as I slid by but a large rock continued and banged my left ankle…it hurt. Thank goodness the branch was sturdy and stopped my rapid descent. I stood up, sort of and assessed the damage. Abrasions, trace of blood, no broken bones. I turned around and purposely sat down…I would ride down this ravine of scree on my butt. Still holding my hiking boots in my left hand, I began the descent…I thought of Randy. Obsession and over-confidence are probably the worse two traits when we search for Fenn’s treasure. I was ashamed to admit I exhibited both of those this day with my bad decision, even putting Molly at risk.

It wasn’t long until I was at the shoreline, Molly found her way to us, and Michelle landed the kayak so we could come up with another plan. She said she had found a good “special place” that I needed to see. She gave me her life jacket and off I went in her kayak.

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A possible special place

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A name below the red arrow

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Approaching where the river enters the inlet. A rock bluff on one side and a shoreline of thick willows on the opposite shore. Definitely not accessible on foot, IMO.

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I did not exit the kayak and search for Fenn’s treasure chest at the “special place”. There was no way Forrest could have arrived there on foot, and I don’t think he used a boat or kayak or canoe to hide the chest. I paddled away, content that at last I had seen the “imaginary line”.

As Molly and I headed up the trail, I turned around to get one last picture of Santa Cruz Lake. I could see Michelle as a tiny dot in the center of the lake as she paddled towards the boat ramp. It was a bittersweet moment for me. I had made many trips to this area to search for Fenn’s treasure since last October, and now it was over.

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As Michelle and I drove home, we discussed the day’s adventure. Despite the abrasions, bruises, and her accidently rolling out of the kayak into the lake (near the cottonwood stand which was hilarious but unfortunately not captured on video), we all had a great day…no, we had an awesome day!

As I was explaining to her how I was done there and how I’d need to come up with a new search location, a brilliant thought flashed through my brain…what if Forrest …

Cynthia

 

No Child Left Inside

The press release below came today from the office of the Governor of Washington State. It looks like he picked up on Forrest’s belief that it’s a good idea to get kids outside…

Maybe he should consider taking some of that grant money and hiding a couple thousand in each State Park and publishing poems with hints to where it’s hidden  🙂

dal-

—————-

state

April 22, 2016

Contact: Governor Inslee’s Communications Office

ADVISORY: Inslee to announce statewide No Child Left Inside Grants

 

Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday will announce nearly $1 million in new grants that will help young people get outside and connect with nature and their communities. Inslee will be joined for the announcement by children and educators.

The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission will award the grants for programs in 15 counties. This is the first-of-its kind grant program in Washington. No Child Left Inside is the result of legislation passed last year and the grant funding was a recommendation of the governor’s Blue Ribbon Task Force on Parks and Outdoor Recreation and the Governor’s Council for the Healthiest Next Generation.

The grants will help more children gain exposure to outdoor activities and supports the governor’s Healthiest Next Generation efforts to help kids be more active.

Monday’s announcement will be held in partnership with Wild Whatcom, an organization that connects kids to nature in lasting and meaningful ways.

When: Monday, April 25 at 4:10 PM

Where: Northern Heights Elementary School (4000 Magrath Road, Bellingham)

*NOTE: TV and photographers – visuals will include footage of the governor engaging with students outdoors where the school property includes woodlands.

What the Brits Think

John-Kerrison-Profile

“A few seconds ago I tore my trousers trying to climb what could only generously be described as a fairly medium-sized boulder. Shortly before that I’d watched with pathetic abandon as my sunglasses were swept over the edge of a waterfall. I’m now looking at my feet, where a couple of inches from my hiking boots lies what used to be a snake. I can tell that’s what it was because its head is still attached to what might otherwise be mistaken for a rogue spinal cord. I’m beginning to question whether I’m entirely cut out for adventure. Just a week earlier, I was in an office writing about enterprise IT. Now I’m almost 5,000 miles away wondering what kind of animal could strip the flesh from a snake.”

This is the introduction to John Kerrison’s lively story about looking for Forrest’s chest and little green men while on a trip to the USA a few months back.

According to his bio, “John Kerrison is a writer based in Cornwall England. His words have appeared in a range of publications including The Guardian, Sabotage Times, RedBull.com and The Fly — and will continue to do so until he finally finds that treasure.”

Mr. Kerrison is witty and provocative and entirely correct in his assessment of the chase. If you don’t believe I could possibly be correct this time either, then I suggest you read his articles for yourself..

They are linked below, unless aliens have removed them-

Open Road
Adventure Seekers

 

A New Map…

Please Note that these maps have sold out and are no longer available.

 

Cynthia and I have been working on a secret project for Fennboree III, and we can finally tell everyone what we have been up to.

I am happy to announce a special new treasure map is now available, made just in time for Fennboree.  This map is similar to the one in Too Far To Walk, but has had some significant changes made to it.

FENNBOREE III Map 24"x30"

Forrest, in collaboration with Benchmark Maps (www.benchmarkmaps.com), has redesigned his treasure map, and we are releasing a limited edition of 30″x24” poster of the new map, signed and numbered by FF himself.

These maps were printed in Albuquerque, by a great lady named Tami, at A Good Sign (www.agoodsignabq.com).  We talked to several local companies, and while they each told us they couldn’t print something this nice and big, they all told me that Tami could.  If you need something large printed in Albuquerque, she is the lady to see.

Tami has a print shop, on the corner of 2nd and Lead, in downtown Albuquerque, which happens to be located just across the street from a castle (which you might notice is in the picture behind Tami).  I didn’t even know there was a castle in Albuquerque, but it was explained to me that it used to belong to the local jewelry maven, Gertrude Zackary.  It was only built about 10 years ago (which explains why I didn’t know about it). Sadly, Gertrude passed away shortly after the castle was built, and it was never really lived in that long.  Her children now own the property, and they rent it to movie studios for filming.  I hope to someday get an up close view of the gargoyles guarding the rooftops of that place.

Tami

Tami is printing the first batch of these as we speak, and will have the first batch ready by Monday.  We hope to have them signed by Forrest within a few days, and the first ones will ship out by the end of next week.  The map on the table in front of her was the test one she printed for me, and looks way better than the picture on the website.

You can order yours now, only at:
http://treasurehuntingshirts.com/product/fennboree-map-poster/

The cost is $100 each..
They are stunning.

This map will only be available in poster form, at least until later this year, so if you are waiting for the mouse pad version, you might have quite a long wait.  Also, don’t forget they are a Limited Edition, so once they are gone – they are gone.

Report From Friday by Cynthia…

February 13th, 2016

 BY CYNTHIA

 

Friday Feb 12th Search for Randy

A couple days ago, Tom Terrific mentioned he’d like to wade downstream from Buckman Road where Randy’s car was found…he felt the river was low enough and slow enough for him to do this, with the aid of a searcher or two on the shoreline for safety’s sake.

A small group exchanged emails and decided on meeting Friday morning at 7:00 am near Old Buckman Road. I arrived first, quickly joined by Roger Radcrad a veteran searcher, Robert B who is not a Fenn treasure searcher but ex-military with SAR experience, and Tom Terrific himself. I received a text from Scott R that we should go ahead without him…he’d catch up, eventually. Seems Scott was driving a bit above the speed limit on his way north, and got pulled over…

The four of us accessed the river and were surprised to see the flow had greatly increased from what we expected. We agreed wading was not a good idea…we’d walk along the shoreline, spreading out where feasible between the water and cliff-sides, downstream, as far as time would allow.

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Roger led the way…along the water’s edge…sometimes winding through thickets of willows that slashed at my face and grabbed at my hair like giant tentacles with claws. There were areas of Russian olive trees that were thick with branches covered in thorns. I noticed the guys were wearing gloves…I understood why as I tried to push the branches aside enough to wiggle through. Later I noticed a bloody scratch across Roger’s cheek… where he apparently lost the battle with an angry branch…

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There were stretches along the shoreline where the sides got steep between the water and cliff- face. Robert’s dog Pepper never seemed to mind…maybe having 4 feet with your center of gravity a few inches from the ground made this hiking much more amiable…

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As we went about our journey, we each kept an eye out for Randy or any clues that would be helpful…sometimes Roger would stop for a moment and use his binoculars to search the shoreline and land across the river. Once Robert and I crawled through the thicket of tree branches, willows, and brush to check out an area that Pepper seemed interested in sniffing…

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Every now and then, we came to an area of sandy beach along the water. This particular search for Randy was bittersweet for me…I was in awe of the beauty of the river through this section of canyon I’d never traveled. Despite the brisk 23 degree temperature when we first stepped out of our vehicles that morning, the sun soon warmed my chilled bones…we couldn’t have asked for a more beautiful February day. The sky could not have been any bluer or the water clearer…we were witnessing the Rio Grande at it’s finest. I almost felt guilty with my overwhelming sense of joy to be standing there…

As we took a break on a much-appreciated beach, we heard yelling coming from upstream…we looked up on the butte to see Scott waving to us…he had made it after all and finally spotted us from his vantage point. We hollered back and forth…not really sure what the other said, but good enough to understand he’d continue his hike up high, and eventually meet us downstream.

Below picture: Scott is standing at point of red arrow.

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We four, plus Pepper continued on…winding our way along the water, through thickets and brush when necessary. I was delighted when we retreated from the shoreline to meet Scott on higher ground.

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Above photo: Roger, Scott, Tom, and Robert.
The guys exchanged information and stories while I found a nice rock out of the way to take a seat…once again I marveled at the beauty of the canyon, the desert hillside and terrain, the sky…

There alone on my rock in my solitude, I looked at these 4 guys…I mean, unbeknownst to them, I studied them…Roger a 70-yr old Vietnam veteran who has been out searching for Randy almost every day for 4 weeks, mostly alone…he probably now knows the area between Buckman Road and the raft including all the roads and trails around Montoso Peak better than anyone except maybe John Brown. Standing to his right was Scott, a 40-ish yr old guy who looked like he’d just stepped off the cover of Guns and Ammo magazine…This is meant to be a compliment…if I ever need a young, all-around super duper guy for a body guard, Scott would get the call! He, too, has done numerous searches, breaking an axle on his ATV trailer, ruining the transmission in his truck, and finding a flat tire when he returned to his vehicle later today. But, despite his bad luck, he never gives up helping to search for Randy. To his right stands Tom Terrific…I had never met him prior but had read a few of his comments on the blog. Like all of us but Scott, he too is on the north side of 60 and wanted to help search for Randy…he was the instigator of this particular search. On the right is Robert…he had never heard of Fenn and the treasure until a month ago when he saw that Randy was missing. He is ex-military with experience in search and recovery…he also has been kayaking Cochiti Lake, trying to paddle through the ice chunks to the river inlet. Some of you who read this story may criticize me for talking about these guys…but they epitomize the kind of folks who have been searching for Randy the past month…and I want everyone to understand the commitment some of us feel.

It was now approaching 1 pm, so most of us decided it was time to head back to the vehicles. Scott wanted to continue his trek downstream a bit further and Roger wanted to hike back up along the shoreline we’d just negotiated. Tom, Robert, and I decided to walk above the river across the terrain where Scott had walked…it was easier and some of us believe this was Randy’s exit strategy all along.

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For the three of us, walking up and down the hilly terrain, winding our way through the junipers back to the saddle on the butte where we sighted Scott was like a walk in the park compared to the hike along the shoreline. Just prior to the saddle, we found the dirt road that winds down to the river from the water wells near Buckman…Randy may have discovered this prior to his trip, and planned this as part of his walk back to his car…we likely will never know.

We were tired when we returned to our vehicles…we had been gone almost 7 hours and most of that time was on our feet. Unfortunately, we did not find Randy, nor any clues. I was delighted, though, that we all returned safely…other than minor scratches, no one twisted an ankle, bled profusely, or fell into the river. Pepper lay exhausted in the shade beside her owner’s truck while Tom and Robert enjoyed a cold beer while resting their tired feet, sitting on the tail gate. I threw my gear in my vehicle, said my good-byes, and headed back to civilization. It was a long ride across the sandy, rippled surface of Buckman Road…passing Diablo Canyon, staring at the guys near the tents there wondering if they were the “Mountainmen from Texas”… but mostly contemplating… what to do next?

Robert has made progress with the Cochiti Pueblo and may be able to gain access to Tetilla Peak next week. If so, we can glass the lake and river inlet. Roger talked about a trail he found up the east side of the canyon from the raft to the mesa north of where the raft was found. If we camped there on top, it would give us an early start to another search day, hiking down this “trail” to the river, where we could search the shoreline and hillside north of the raft upstream to Ancho rapids. Until every square inch of land has been searched or Randy has been found, some of us will never give up…

Peace to Randy and his family.
To see more pictures from today’s search, click this link: https://tomcor99.smugmug.com/Randy-Search-Buckman-Shoreline

Drone Footage on Saturday…

February 7th, 2016

Here is the Drone footage shot by Dave on Saturday, February 6th, 2016

 

 

On Searching…

nmscenic

February 3rd, 2016

by forrest

 

An average person can believe they excel when they don’t, and most smart people realize that they are really just average. Then there are some who stand out and don’t even know it.

I received this email from Cynthia this morning. f

I think Sacha and I will put together another group search on Saturday unless the search area gets more snow tomorrow or Friday. We just can’t turn this off…you trained us to look for your treasure chest. Most of us aren’t surprised when we don’t find it, but that doesn’t keep us from continuing to search. We go home, regroup, re-research, and go out again…never ever planning to give-up.

Drone Footage on Saturday…

January 30th, 2016

 

Here is Dave’s & Cynthia’s drone footage from Saturday, January 30th. You will remember that they were focused on the side canyon, close to where the raft was found, where a “body-like” image was discovered during a review.

 

Report From Friday by Cynthia…

January 31st, 2016

 BY cynthia

West Rim Photo Shoot for Randy

I was hoping Sacha and her group of a dozen plus searchers would find Randy in the canyon yesterday…the “figure” sprawled on top the large boulder looked promising from the drone footage taken a week or so ago. Alas, they identified that spot, and it was not a body…
So here I am once again…passing along the only information I can contribute to our search for our fellow Fenn treasure-hunter Randy Bilyeu…
The only idea I had left was to hike out to the West Rim of White Rock Canyon through Bandelier to the spot across from the raft…I’d set my camera with 300 mm zoom lens on a tripod and photograph a grid of pictures which I could then send the link to Dal for anyone to download onto their own computers, and zoom in even more. Maybe someone will see something…
Forrest made me promise that I wouldn’t make the hike alone so I called Roger who lives in Santa Fe to see if he’d escort me…he said he would.

Early the next day, we headed to Bandelier. The day before I had told the rangers there at the visitors’ center what my plan was…to hike out through the back-country to the rim. They said no problem and asked me to remain on the trail…I debated if I should explain my plan to them again…no trail usage intended…we would follow the south rim of Frijoles Canyon to the river and turn south. They hesitated and said okay…they wrote down my name and phone number and party of 2. They warned me that if my car was still in the parking lot there at dusk, we would be considered lost, and a search party would be sent out. Heaven forbid anything goes awry, I thought…

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The drive across NM502 that Friday morning was beautiful…we couldn’t have asked for better weather for January. We rode in silence much of the way…both of us contemplating our day ahead…neither Roger nor I had ever hiked across the back-country here so did not know what to expect. The lady ranger told me we were looking at a 10-mile roundtrip hike. That didn’t sound too extreme at our ages if you are on level terrain with good footing…but this was bush- whacking across the undulating mesa tops covered in vegetation and a lot of pre-cut dead branches. And that thought of absolutely having to be back to the car by dusk weighed heavy on my mind.
We parked, gathered our gear, and headed to the Frijoles Falls trailhead where we would make our 400-ft ascent up the switchbacks on the south side of the canyon to reach the mesa top. Much of the trail was still snow-covered…I followed the fresh rabbit tracks ahead of me.

ImageExtract-002 I wanted to sprint to the top…but Roger wanted to take in the scenery. It was the right thing to do since who knew when we’d return here. At the top of the switchbacks, we left the trail and headed east along Frijoles Canyon rim…it was mostly a pleasant hike.

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It took us 2 hours to get to the top of the rim across from the raft…we weren’t directly across from it but close enough. As I set up my tripod and attached the zoom lens to the camera, Roger was already busy using the binoculars, searching…

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We were quiet much of the time…the only sound was the shutter release repeating over and over…90 times to be exact because that’s how many photos I took during the grid shoot. Even when I finished, we both sat there…I took a few pictures on my phone which I sent to Forrest to let him know we made it safely to the rim. I was surprised there was enough of a signal, but when I received a reply from him, I knew they sent.
I joined Roger right out on the edge…it was almost spiritual…it’s hard to explain the feeling I felt… looking for Randy, trying to think like Randy…I’m sure most of the other folks who have done their own boots-on-the-ground searches as well as Forrest and his teams in the chopper, all understand what I mean.

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After an hour and a half, I asked Roger if he was ready to pack up and head back…no response. Ok…I knew we had plenty of time to get back before dusk. We talked about what a spectacular day it was…the setting up on the mesa top looking north or south along the Rio Grande was absolutely gorgeous if you like the desert…we both do. We talked about how we wished we’d brought camping gear so we could stay longer…it was that spectacular to us, and the solitude and quiet was so peaceful…
Eventually, we packed up and headed home…
Here is the link to the pictures: I’d like to thank my BFF Tom back in Pennsylvania who allowed me to post these on his SmugMug site.

https://tomcor99.smugmug.com/01312016-Search-for-Randy

Cynthia

Inside Edition…

January 26th, 2016

by cynthia

 

I was almost relieved this morning when I received the email from Forrest that he’d canceled his helicopter ride and interview with Inside Edition…Santa Fe had received a couple inches of new snow, so searching for Randy with a news crew would have to wait. I went about my morning… time to complete some sorely needed chores.

As I pulled out of my driveway, my cell phone rang…it was Sacha excitedly telling me the interview would take place after all. It turns out Inside Edition had already sent their Houston correspondent to Santa Fe, as well as a team including the cameraman and sound guy. They even said they’d pay for the helicopter…

Forrest asked us to meet them at 11:30 am in the Jet Center at the airport. Not only does it take me an hour to drive there, I needed to shower, etc.
Sacha and I talked briefly while I hurried to get ready…I could make it there by 11:45, but she’d be a bit later since she too had changed her morning plans for child care.

As I pulled into the parking lot at the Jet Center, Forrest was walking from his car, and the Inside Edition folks were carrying their equipment inside. While they waited for the helicopter and pilot Doug, Jocelyn the Producer/Reporter unofficially interviewed Forrest from the waiting area. Glenn the cameraman and Zach the sound guy were busy preparing their equipment.

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Doug arrived right on schedule at noon…Glenn the cameraman grabbed the big TV camera and accessories and Zach grabbed his case with the sound equipment…the official TV interview began on the tarmac.

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Eventually, the ground interview finished and Forrest went up in the air with Glenn and Zach. I think Jocelyn stayed back because only 2 folks could fly with Forest and the pilot. By that time, Sacha had arrived and we began discussing the next move for creating another group ground search for Randy. The hour the guys were in the air flew by…before I was ready, they were walking through the door from the tarmac. I was busy most of that time downloading photos of Randy from the Sept book-signing at La Fonda, as well as some photos from our boots-on-the- ground group searches for Randy for Jocelyn to use for the show.

The next part of the interview took place at Forrest’s home in his office. Sacha and I were told to accompany them there…which we did.

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There’s a lot of hurry up and waiting when it comes to making a professional production, even when the footage of Forrest’s interview which airs could be just a few minutes. It took awhile for Glenn to place the lights and Zach to set the microphones. Again, Jocelyn spent time chit- chatting with Forrest and taking notes, while Sacha prompted her and sometimes Forrest for the right question or topic.

Eventually the equipment was satisfactorily placed, and it was time for everyone to take their seats. Sacha’s and my favorite part of the day was Glenn the cameraman applying makeup to Forrest…now we know why Forrest is such a handsome devil…he wears makeup!

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Finally, it was time to say lights, camera, action…But first, Zach the sound guy reminded us all to turn off our cell phones…these guys are professionals, and there can’t be any arbitrary sounds in the background. The interview started…it seemed to be going well. Soon, Glenn hollers “Cut”…there was a “ding”…oops, Forrest’s laptop dings each time he gets an email. Sacha jumped up, disconnected ff’s laptop from the power cord, and took it out of the room… the interview proceeded.

Five minutes later I realized I’m holding my laptop on my lap beneath my jacket and phone which I had powered off when told to silence it. I thought, oh my God, my laptop dings, too, if I get a message. I swallowed and prayed no one would text me. After a minute or so, I nonchalantly turned it off but for some reason decided I too should move it to another room. I knew to be exceedingly quiet because the shotgun microphone on the camera would pick up any little sound. I knew the camera was a closeup on Forrest and that I was out of camera shot. So I got up and silently tiptoed out of his office to the foyer where I set it down. As I re-entered the room, I heard Glenn yell “cut” once more…my body moving across the lights created a moving shadow on camera. Jeeze…this movie making stuff was a lot harder than I anticipated.

After 30 minutes or so, they said they had enough footage so I thought the interview was over. No, they wanted to tape Forrest behind his desk, reading and answering his emails. More preparation, new locations for the camera and microphone, more waiting. This time the filming was much shorter and no one was talking.

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In the meantime Peggy and Zoe returned home. I chit-chatted with them in the foyer while the Inside Edition folks moved here and there, gathering their equipment, putting some away and re-positioning others.

Again, I found the day was not over. They wanted Forrest to walk through the heavy double doors between his office and kitchen carrying his book Too Far to Walk. He was instructed to walk up the steps, go to the table, sit down, and open the book to the map of the four states inside the back flap.

While Forrest sat at his desk catching up on emails as they set-up, Peggy entered his office through the same heavy wooden double doors, carefully holding onto the railing as she descended the three steps into his office. He gently looked up at her and sweetly asked “do you want me for something?”…her sweet reply, “I always want you for something.” I swear, I wish I could have captured the look on his face…after 62 years of being married to Peggy, I think he is still smitten…I felt like I’d just witnessed a beautiful young girl tell her boyfriend for the first time that she loved him…it was the highlight of my day!

The next scene was finally shot of Forrest going up the steps into the kitchen and displaying the map. Finally…the Inside Edition interview was almost done. They requested Sacha provide a sound bite. I followed them outside, along the south side of his house to the pond…it was a beautiful setting. I watched as they placed the microphone on her lapel, brushed her hair, and got set. Her interview began…she was a pro. I mean, this girl needs to be a TV news anchor…I was truly impressed. Jocelyn asked her to elaborate on Randy’s fate. Sacha had the integrity to say it wasn’t appropriate for her to speculate. She talked nicely of Randy…it could have been any of us….she made me proud to be one of us…this close knit community of Fenn treasure hunters.

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This episode of Inside Edition is scheduled to air tomorrow. The network and time varies depending on where you live. Jocelyn said it’s scheduled to air on KOB-TV at 3:30 tomorrow afternoon. That is a New Mexico station. Please, everyone check your own TV times., and recheck this one here in NM as well.

I have a possible small warning: Sacha and I listened to the entire interview…there is a segment where I think Jocelyn asked Forrest three times if he feels responsible for Randy’s death. The third time she repeated this question, I formed my hand into a gun and pretended to aim at her because I was pissed off. But then I realized, this is her job…this is what she does for a living… Inside Edition tends to sensationalize the news they report. So go easy on her and the show…
And go give someone a hug…

Peace be with you, Randy…

Cynthia

 

This story is scheduled to air around the country on Thursday, January 28th. To find out what station near you and what time click here:
http://www.insideedition.com/listings

The video clip is now available on the Inside Edition website:
http://www.insideedition.com/headlines/14352-daughter-of-man-who-vanished-looking-for-buried-treasure-his-plan-bewildered-me