Sparrow’s Speculations Part 2…

words

August 2019
by Sparrow  

It was interesting to see the reactions to my first article, Sparrow’s Speculations #1. The first article mainly revolved around one sentence that Forrest had shared on his birthday, 8-22-2016. If you read that article you would know that I shared that I thought it was very possible Forrest was revealing the Car Rental agency he used (for part or all of the journey) when hiding the Treasure. 

The reactions ranged from acceptance that it was “more than a coincidence” to downright mockery of the whole idea. I expected this. As I had mentioned, these are “speculations” about several oddities I have encountered as I did my investigations into the poem itself, and many “hints” I feel that Forrest has given us over the years. Though not unique, my method of solving the poem is very different from the method the majority of searchers use. I know this because I follow the blogs, and read the “solves”, and rarely see anyone approach the poem the way I do.

I must admit that I am very reluctant to share what I am about to share, as this has taken considerable time and thought. In some ways (this sounds quite egotistical I admit) I feel this will blow the lid off the way people are searching, and will eventually lead to an intelligent person solving this awesome puzzle.

What I am about to share in a couple of short articles are “examples” of acrostics I have found in the poem. The first “example” is merely “speculation”, and displays a couple of oddities I have encountered searching, with the final offering being something that I believe will be extremely difficult to deny, or to chalk up to “coincidence” or CONFIRMATION BIAS.  

THE AMAZING FORREST FENN

I must confess that after investigating what I am about to show you, and seeing what Forrest has done, I am completely amazed. When Forrest said that the poem took him 15 years to complete, I can understand why. I know this was not labor that took 365 days a year for 15 years to complete when he says this, but it was still a tremendous amount of work. A lot of trial and error, and imagination were involved in completing it. It is actually quite astounding, and I feel I have really only scratched the surface of what is actually hidden in this poem.

Constructing even a small poem with a few verses in acrostic form is difficult. Imagine constructing the poem of 24 lines, which has acrostics hidden on several lines, horizontal and vertical, and even diagonally throughout the whole poem? This is an amazing feat! It boggles the mind in some instances, when realizing ALL of the words communicated to us by doing this.  Here is the first example. Again, this first example does not include ALL the words that I have found, as the final example I give within the next couple of articles will be almost impossible to refute. This first example contains “speculation” as it is possible that it is “coincidence”. I will leave you to be the judge of that.

sppoem

 This example is using the poem in the form given (all stanzas in place).  I have tried to make a variation in size for the letters in this example. In future examples I may use different colors for the various words used.  The very first acrostics I saw when reading the poem were GAIT (Gone Alone In There), WAFT (Wise And Found The) and BAIT (Brave And In The). In other articles I have written, I have shown how Forrest has “hinted” at these same words SEVERAL times. They are basic acrostics. They could very well be random. However, the hints Forrest has shared lead me to believe these are very REAL. These acrostics are in the first line, the 13th line, and 23rd line horizontally.  These are the BACKBONE of the poem in my opinion. 

The second set of acrostics I saw when investigating is the word HORN.  There are (2) obvious examples of HORN in the poem.  The first is on the beginning letters in the 4th line: “Hint Of Riches New” (HORN). This acrostic connected with another acrostic on exactly the 20th line vertically downward: HORN.  For me this is no coincidence. I will explain in detail why HORN (on line #4 horizontally) meeting “horn” (on exactly the 20th line vertically) is very important to the solution in a future article.

Please also note the diagonal acrostic “EDEN” which starts at the last letter of line #1 and heads vertically down to meet the “N” in the vertical acrostic “horn”. I believe EDEN may be an important part to the solution also. That is why I am including that acrostic in this first example.  Again, I will explain in detail why this is so in a future article.

I have also included three other DIAGONAL acrostics found in the poem:  to hasten” (begins on the 8th line diagonally upwards to end on 1st line), “birth” (backwards acrostic downwards beginning on 13th line), and the word “today” (15th line upwards diagonally to 11th line).  I MUST POINT OUT once again that I am not altering the poem in any way here. These letters are THERE. I have not added them.  For the words “to hasten” to be coincidentally diagonal in the poem where I show them could be coincidental, but this is very doubtful.  Especially if we consider that we are to look “QUICKLY” down—and the words “to hasten” mean to cause something to happen more quickly. Though I do not know the exact reason, it appears we are “to hasten” in the search.

The last Acrostic in this example could be entirely coincidental, but again it is very doubtful that it is.  It is a VERY curious acrostic to be sure:   DAENISM.  This starts on the 11th line and spelling DAENISM downwards in a vertical manner to the 17th line.  What is strange about this acrostic is that the diagonals “birth”, “today” and “to hasten” could refer to it in some way.  I must point out clearly that I FIRST saw the acrostic, then googled it, not knowing what “DAENISM” even was.  Imagine my surprise when I saw that DAENISM is indeed a word, and that it has a very curious meaning to it. I did not know there was such a word before I saw the acrostic in the poem.  This acrostic has 7 letters that are THERE. Coincidental? You decide.

Please go to the following link:  https://particracy.fandom.com/wiki/Daenism  or simply google DAENISM.  It is actually a philosophy that someone at WIKI Fandom CREATED. They created it several years ago. The reason I mention this is due to my mention of Sequoyah in my first article.  Remember that Sequoyah INVENTED a written language for the Cherokee people. Could it be possible that Forrest in some way was involved in INVENTING a philosophy?  That sounds far-fetched, and Forrest may have NOTHING to do with this at all. It did cross my mind though, as Forrest is like Sequoyah.   Forrest does what HE wants to do and no one can stop him. There could very well be a connection.

An important aspect of DAENISM is its symbol: A WHEEL.  I mention this because mdc777 (a contributor to Dal’s blog) pointed out in one of his own YouTube videos that another searcher had found a way to reveal the words “TRY THE WHEEL” in the poem itself.  This is what shocked me when I found the acrostic “TRY AUSBYS” as a hint.  I shared this in my first article.  TRY AUSBYS.  TRY THE WHEEL.   Very curious indeed.  Could THE WHEEL be the wheel in DAENISM and not another wheel?  Again, I leave that for your consideration.  Again, google DAENISM to see its symbol is indeed a wheel.

Again, this first EXAMPLE of the poem has no PROVEN acrostic in it. I also do not know how these acrostics lead to the solution. They are curiosities and oddities.  As I proceed in future EXAMPLES though, I will add maps and photos to the mix.  Someone had stated I offered no photos or maps and should burn my ideas.  I will share photos, links and maps in upcoming articles that will become harder and harder to refute in my serious opinion.  I do want to EMPHASIZE once more though that I had not added to the poem, or moved anything around.  The words that are revealed to be acrostics are THERE.  I did not “cherry pick” them.  Accept or reject them. That is entirely up to you.

To be continued…….

-Sparrow

 

 

 

 

 

Chase-opoly…

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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…

map2

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.

emerge

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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

pinkThis page is now closed to new comments. To continue the conversation please go to the newest Odds n Ends page

Please click on the comment balloon below to contribute to the discussion of  Forrest Fenn’s Treasure Hunt. Please note that many topics have their own pages. Please scroll through the blog to see all the discussion pages. There are also stories, scrapbooks, searcher’s reports general information, tips from Forrest, a rumors blog and even email responses from Forrest. So please look around and if you want to make a comment please use the most appropriate page.

Thanks…

 

dal…

Sparrow’s Speculations…

words

August 2019
by Sparrow

Last year, about this same time, I wrote a short article called “Fishin’ Part 1” which can be found here if you are interested.

I had intended to write a “Fishin’ Part 2” at that time but decided to stay in the search for a while to see if maybe the lights would go on, and I might actually solve the riddle in the poem. Since another year has passed and I am still unable to solve it, I have decided to share some things that I have discovered during the last 3 years. I have never seen anyone share what I am about to so I hope that it enlightens someone, and helps toward a true solve.

I would like to share a few short articles containing things that have puzzled and amazed me over the last few years. I was originally going to share one long article, but decided maybe “bites” might be better so the things I share can really sink in and be of help to someone. I want to share some “speculations” in a couple of short articles, and finally a full solve I put together back in 2016 that I have always thought was good. (lol)

On July 27, 2016 I happened to be reading one of the News sources on the Internet (I have forgotten which one). I normally check CNN, ABC and FOX news to get a mix of the news. That fateful day there appeared an article about a man who had died (sadly) searching for the Treasure. I had never heard of the “Chase” before reading that article. I actually held myself back from reading it, as I feared I would be “hooked” on another treasure hunt (I had been involved in the TREASURE search for a golden horse back in 1984-1989 when I was younger). I read the story anyway. You guessed it—I was hooked on another treasure hunt—and have been “hooked” for 3 years now.

Now that I have decided to “let go” I want to share some unusual things that I have discovered during that time. My first “speculation” will be to share something I saw back on August 22, 2016 on Forrest’s 86th birthday. It was on Jenny Kile’s site “Mysterious Writings”. I had only been involved in the Chase for less than a month, but I was sure acrostics had something to do with solving the riddle in the poem. It may not be the ONLY thing required—but it definitely does involve acrostics. Let me show you why I believe this.
WHERE WARM WATERS HALT?

I had been very curious as to what the above set of words meant. Was it talking about water, rain, clouds, or rivers? Was there a special meaning to the words? I had once pondered whether “where warm waters halt” could be TEARS. Tears are warm. I knew that the “Trail of Tears” ends very close to Tulsa, Oklahoma, near the town of Talequah. The cabin for the Indian Sequoyah is near there. His English name was George Gist, and he was a silversmith. He was also disabled and limped. Sequoyah was a brilliant man who invented the written Cherokee language. It was an astonishing feat, and he has never had the recognition he deserved for having done this for his people. The name Gist was important to me, along with some of the other things concerning Sequoyah. The word “halt” always intrigued me, as “halt” in the Bible refers to a lame person. Sequoyah had a distinctive limp. Why would the “Chase” begin in Oklahoma? I do not know. If warm waters halt in Oklahoma, did Forrest begin there?

If he did start there, which direction did he go? Did he begin there and head southwest back towards New Mexico, or did he start there and head northwest towards Colorado, Wyoming of Montana? Is it possible that Forrest had left a meeting in one of those northern states, then flew to Tulsa Oklahoma, and then drove on to New Mexico? That would be the opposite direction than you would think he would have taken. Or had he rented a car there and driven north instead?

You may ask, Sparrow, why are you centering on Tulsa Oklahoma? Are you starting there because you “think” it might be the place? Is it because “tears”, and the coincidence that the “Trail of Tears” happens to end near where Sequoyah lived? Why would you think Oklahoma has anything to do with the Chase?
Let me explain why. During the short time I had been searching Forrest had made the statement that he hoped no one would check rental car agencies because there might be too much information involved. Then, shortly after on his birthday, 8-22-16, he left a cryptic message on “weekly words” on Jenny’s blog.
Here is his message of 8-22-16:
“Save your best smile until after you raise the lid.” f
https://mysteriouswritings.com/happy-birthday-forrest-fenn/

Most people would immediately think about the treasure chest. How happy someone would be once they had opened that lid and saw all of the glittering gold! Some said that maybe a camera was in the treasure chest, so that when opened it would snap a photo—so you should be smiling when it did take the picture. Many searchers left comments below the weekly words. I remember that I left words to the effect “OK, if you say so, but I have always preferred Enterprise”. No one commented back on what I had said at that time. You see, I look at the poem very differently than others do. I also look at sentences in a much different manner than others do. I constantly scan sentences for acrostics—it is just in my nature to do so. Let me show you what is actually in the sentence above. It is a hint given by Forrest—and most importantly, a hint given on his birthday. Did Forrest do something special on his birthday one year? Is that why he would share this hint on this very day?

Let us take a closer look at the sentence Forrest shared. We will begin by capitalizing all of the first letters in the words:
Save Your Best Smile Until After You Raise The Lid. f
The capital letters in acrostic form then spell out the following:
SYBSUAYRTL
I believe the “L” is actually there to tell what direction we should read the letters”
SYBSUAYRT  L
In other words, it is telling us to read from right towards the left.
If we now REVERSE the letters you will observe the following:
L TRYAUSBYS TRY AUSBYS (or “why not give Ausbys a shot?”)
Try Ausbys? What do you mean “Try Ausbys”? What is that supposed to mean? It helps if we go to this link—-it makes it much more clear:
https://www.ausbycarrentals.com/ You can also just Google “Ausby Car Rentals”.

You will notice that this car rental agency is small, and services Tulsa Oklahoma and Dallas Texas. As we all know Forrest is originally from Texas.

If Ausbys Car rentals are in Tulsa, Oklahoma, is Forrest hinting that he BEGAN his trip to hide the treasure near the very spot where the “Trail of Tears” comes to a halt? I believe that I can say without a doubt that I know the car rental agency Forrest used when hiding the treasure—-AUSBY CAR RENTALS. Or perhaps you are one of these people that will say “This is all coincidence. The fact that you can spell “TRY AUSBYS” with the letters in the sentence means nothing”.

I had actually shared this with two different searchers. One denied it meant anything—the other just said “Very interesting”.

I do not believe this is chance at all. Look at the sentence structure to “Save your best smile until after you raise the lid”. f It is created to hide a specific hint. I believe that hint refers to the rental car agency used to hide the Treasure. When? How many miles did he drive? Which direction did he go when he drove off in the rental? Towards New Mexico, or north towards the other three locations?
I think the answer to “When” is on his birthday. He shared this sentence on his 86th birthday—this is also a hint. But what year? A good detective might be able to find out the answers.

This is the first of a few “tidbits” that I would like to share over a few articles. Accept them or reject them. That is up to you. I offer this to help anyone who might be on the right track. I hope some future articles will also be of help. I am done. For further confirmation of my speculations please Google “Where does the trail of tears end?” To be continued……

-Sparrow

 

 

 

 

 

Gauging Value…

val

August 2019

By MA

 

What’s the true value of the Forrest Fenn treasure hunt? Ask this to a handful of people and you’re likely to get a handful of different answers. The truth is that there are several different motivations for pursuing the chase, the chase not limited to just the promise of sudden wealth and fame. 

I, for one, fall into this other group of searchers, the chase being less about fortune and fame and more about the mystery and the adventures associated with the chase. While many others are chasing the gold I want to know what’s inside the olive jar? I want to know how he did it and I want to know why he felt the need to include a biography in the chest when there is already so much known about him? This is where my personal curiosity resides, the gold and precious stones, etc., just being a pleasing sidebar. But then again, my personal involvement with the chase was originally motivated by different factors.

February, 13th, 2015, a Friday no less, and in just a few minutes I suddenly had one foot squarely planted on the other side of life. They call them “widow-makers” because they generally happen without any advanced symptoms or warnings and they are usually fatal. I was one of those lucky survivors because my widow-maker took place at a residence where there was experienced medical help, forty-four minutes later a waiting surgical team was cutting my cloths off of me on a stainless steel table at a hospital seventy miles away. They saved my life but not before permanent heart damage had set in. 

I only have three walls of my heart functioning now, at the time of my release from the hospital my injection fraction rate was only 30%, the normal being roughly 60-70%. What this meant was that I had a significantly reduced blood flow, any type of activity wearing me down quickly and causing me to struggle for breaths. This condition wasn’t expected to change and the prognosis for my future wasn’t good. Suddenly my entire life had changed, my typical active lifestyle no longer a possibility, or so they said. 

Now there were a couple of things that came into play that helped inspire my road to recovery, the first being the gift of a DSLR camera from my best friend because he knew that I desperately needed that distraction in my life. He reasoned that if I could no longer run and climb around in the wilds then at least I could photography those wilds, this then offering me something to help me refocus my future. I cannot explain to you just how big of a roll this simple gift ended up playing in my recovery other then to say that it was absolutely HUGE. 

A glass of water, I’ll never forget that first glass of water after my surgery. It was the absolute best glass of water I ever tasted. That first flower I saw after that surgery, it was absolutely the most beautiful flower I had ever seen in my life, and so on and so on. All of these things that I had previously taken for granted I was no longer taking for granted, that camera helping me to see what I had been missing all of those prior years. Suddenly the little things meant so much and I was finding great appreciation in all manner of new things, even in the simplest of things. Trust me when I say that near death can certainly show you what’s truly important in life. I know first hand. 

So first came the gift of the camera, the required distraction that allowed me to slowly let go of all the Post Traumatic Stress Disorders and those related fears. Through the lens of that camera I was slowly strolling further and further away from the house, then further and further away from the truck, then further and further away from the phone, then further and further away from all of them. My injection fraction rate was suddenly up to 50% so the next year it was bicycles, trekking poles, backpacks, kayaks, etc., and slow but sure my injection fraction rate was nearing 60% with only three walls of my heart working. But what inspired the trekking poles, backpacks, bicycles, kayaks, etc.? 

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In mid-2016 I came across the Forrest Fenn treasure chase, still weak at that point from the widow-maker but making slow progress. How awesome it would be if I could recover enough to finish something I had previously started with younger brother who had suddenly passed away in the fall of 2014 of the same illness, just a few months prior to my widow-maker. How awesome that would be! And so this is where the trekking poles and backpacks and bicycles and kayaks, etc., started coming into play. I had promised my brother that I would spread his ashes at one of his favorite locations in the Rocky Mountains and Fenn’s treasure hunt was that one grand adventure that I never got to take with my younger brother when he was alive. It was one of those 1+1 moments, something that’s hard to explain, but the moment I arrived at 2 it was, “game on!” 

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My first Forrest Fenn BOTG adventure took place in the fall of 2018, my brother’s ashes finally reaching their promised destination on that trip. It was a real triumph and success even without a chest full of gold or an olive jar full of information. It took me three years to make the trip, four years to conclude my promise to my younger brother which I was in route to do when I had my widow-maker. This summer, 2019, I stood at the top of the Continental Divide, my “M A 19” now carved in a tree. Do you believe it, I was running around up there without a single issue or care in the world. I was finally standing at the top of the world at over 13’000 feet in the sky. 

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People ask me if I’m ever concerned about being off the beaten track, no cell phone signal or help should I experience heart problems? I smile, chuckle, and reply, “Are you kidding me!” Hell, I’m fearless again, fear being the one thing that would have prevented my having ever gotten as far as I have. Now the Grand Tetons are on my radar, as are other places of natural beauty in the Rocky Mountains. I know that I’ll never see it all but I’m going to do all I can to see and to photograph as much of it as possible.  

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Gold, the contents of an olive jar, these are now sidebars in the chase, my winter theories just serving to create new paths of discovery for my summer adventures. Treasure? Heck, it’s everywhere in the Rocky Mountains if one only takes the time to look for it. It is a national treasure, for sure. I think this is Fenn’s point, my avenue of pursuit just being one of many different avenues. Heck, if were to ever be so fortunate to find Fenn’s treasure chest I’d be tempted to give it back to him just so he could hide it again. This is a chase that should truly never end. 

I’ve been a treasure hunter most of my adult life but this chase isn’t about monetary gain, it’s about life and the simple things. If this article helps to inspire others to take up the chase then I feel that I’ve already found and shared Fenn’s treasure. Gold and the promise of sudden wealth, it can’t buy life, but it can sure inspire you to live it! I think this is Fenn’s message…

-MA 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Most of a Biscuit Basin Solve…

biscuit

August, 2019

By James Collier

 

This is going to be a pretty in-depth post. Like a lot of other searchers, I believed I knew the exact location and took off to Dinosaur National Monument area but came up empty handed. Upon return to my home in Rock Hill, SC, I decided to read TTOTC 5 more times and dissect every word. My approach this time was to read it slowly, to listen carefully, and make sure I had an imagination along with an open mind. To basically read it like a 10-15-year-old might. I went through every chapter and wrote down what I thought were clues. Although Fenn says the clues are “subtle,” I believe they ARE deliberate and direct you to within a 1.5 mile radius of the treasure. Come along on this journey through the book and try to see it like a child would. Open your eyes. Open your mind. Like John Lennon said…”Imagine.”  

Clues to why I think it is where I say it is:

Important Literature Chapter

  1. Multiple references to “little girl.”
  2. Reference to “mud” when referencing the bell tolls book
  3. “I didn’t spend much time in the children’s section or cooking or travel. Finally, I found the area I was looking for.” 
  4. When talking about the Kismet book, he makes sure to specify “the Pick-Pocket guy that is.” This comment should be obvious, so why put it? (I think he Is bringing notice to Pocket Basin (biggest mud pots in Yellowstone).

First Grade Chapter

  1. “My father always said she wouldn’t bite a hard biscuit if she was starving to death.” (First reference of many to biscuits)

No Place For Biddies Chapter

  1. References to “young.”
  2. Meek may mean crossing the street at the location…although I found a different reference which at this time I cannot share as it puts me in a very specific location. 

Jump Starting The Learning Curve Chapter

  1. Reference to “Cross the River.”
  2. Reference to Fire
  3. Looked corroded (Could be reference to Rusty Geyser across the street)
  4. Second reference to Biscuits when talking about his dad
  5. Iron, slide-down fire escape (Could be reference to Iron Springs Creek down from Fire Hole River). He also references in another chapter the Spring Creek. 
  6. He was proud to think of that idea and was the only one who knew about that trick. Old Iron thing marked the tail of his britches with a heavy brown color. (Another mention of Iron and brown as color).
  7. Everyone who was walking behind me knew what I done. People were beginning to notice me. (I think he is referencing he was on his way back from hiding the chest when people started to notice him as he walked back to his car; either the first time or second time).

Bessie And Me Chapter

  1. References to Milk multiple times which I think refers back to ingredients needed to make biscuits

My Spanish Toy Factory Chapter

  1. Unnecessary reference to being hungry and brown bag (Once again, referencing food and the color brown to food).
  2. Pie factory reference
  3. Pineapple pies

Me In The Middle Chapter

  1. Being in the middle again (I think this is a reference to being in the middle where those rivers meet.

Surviving Myself Chapter

  1. Kitchen reference with more baking
  2. Making own butter
  3. Another reference to biscuits
  4. When he is discussing what they wanted for dessert he states “I always said I wanted strawberry shortcake. His brother would want pineapple-upside-down cake. June, she “Liked something else.” He never referenced what exactly it is that she wanted. He then goes on to say she would trim the edges off of several slices of homemade bread and then cut the pieces into fourths. When they came BROWN out of the oven, she’d put butter and different homemade jams on each piece and serve them hot. They always made a big deal out of taking a bite and saying “umm, mom, great strawberry shortcake,” and “ummm, mom, great pineapple upside down cake.” I can still remember how much my dessert tasted JUST LIKE WHAT I ASKED FOR, AND IN MY FANTASY WAY IT WAS.” 

This whole paragraph informs me that the food his sister June wanted was biscuits. When referencing biscuits in clue #2&3 in this chapter they talked about butter and putting homemade jams on them. He then references it here again once they came out of the oven BROWN and they put the jams on each piece. He then states he can still remember how much dessert tasted just like what he asked for and in his fantasy was it was…because it wasn’t what him and his brother wanted, it was biscuits. 

Gypsy Magic Chapter

  1. Here he talks about how five or six girls of all ages built a large fire and danced around it. Keep this in mind for the later chapter talking about the painting he purchased
  2. Uses the word “firelight.”
  3. Use of the word “flames.”

In Love With Yellowstone Chapter

  1. Agate rocks along the rivers
  2. Rationed usage could be a reference to food again

Totem Café Caper Chapter

  1. Water and hiding behind a tree
  2. Brown gravy 
  3. Another food reference to pies
  4. Hid behind a pine tree 

My Brother Being Skippy Chapter

  1. Chinese Fire drill (I think this is the only clue in the chapter and just wants to drive home the fire reference).

The Long Ride Home Chapter

  1. “Greatest blossom” to me is a reference to a tree or flower blossoming as when he referenced the yellow and purple flowers. 

Looking For Lewis And Clark Chapter & Buffalo Cowboy chapters

  1. The only thing I took from these chapters was the nod to Yellowstone, as well as multiple references to food again. 

Stout Hearted Men Chapter

  1. Here I am taking the subtle hint to where my final spot is. Under a tree in the middle of a field has been my go-to final solve. “I slept under a tree with cows grazing all around. It was a threshold moment in my life, but I didn’t know it at the time.”

My War For Me Chapter

  1. A lot of talk about fire here which to me goes along with the gypsies

Blue Jeans And Hush Puppies Again

  1. Here I am taking the clue of him buying the French watercolor painting of the fairies dancing around a rock “if you believe I’d come to that.” I believe this is in reference to two clues. 
  1. Butterfly is a Flutterby (kids toy “flutterbye fairy”)
  2. Fairy creek/Little Firehole river 
  3. Believes a kid will find it as kids are the only ones who believe in fairies

There are other references in the final chapters but they are very small and would be a stretch. 

So now let me put it all together and add the information to the poem. 

Forest Fenn Poem & Clues

Begin It Where Warm Waters Halt 

Ojo Caliente Spring

Take It In the Canton Down,

Not far, but too far to walk

Put in below the home of Brown

 Biscuit Basin due to the multiple references of biscuits and them coming out of the oven “brown,” as biscuit basin from Ojo Caliente Springs is almost exactly 10 miles driving

a

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 

  • Park the car at the entrance to the unmarked trail on the right-hand side of the road. Enter there and walk/wade across the Iron Springs Creek towards where Fairy Falls Creek/Little Firehole River, Mystic Falls and Summit Lake all meet. Heavy loads (falls), Water High (Summit Lake would literally translate to high water). The double Omega symbol in the back of the book can translate to Summit

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.

  • Will not know for sure until you are walking with boots on the ground. But recently I found a really good match to Meek and tarry scant. At this time I am not willing to share this as I am trying to get to Yellowstone first week of September. 

So why is it that I must go and leave my trove for all to seek?

The answers I already know, I’ve done it tired, and now I’m weak.

  • He is now resting under a tree as he did when he was tired in the story

So hear me all and listen good, your effort will be worth the cold.

  • You have to wade through water to get to the final spot

If you are brave and in the wood, I give you title to the gold.

  • Once across the water you will be walking through the woods to the final spot. I believe the chest is inside a piece of wood at the base of a tree with the blaze marking either on the tree or next to it. 

Let me know what y’all think. If someone thinks this is a great solve and heads out there before I can get there, and you just so happen to find it…just remember who directed you there. LOL! Good luck everyone!

– James Collier

 

 

 

 

Lost Creek Solve…

bbn 

August 2019

By Desert Cloak

 

 

CLUE #1 
Begin it where warm waters halt 
When considering where in the Rocky Mountains warm water would most likely occur statistically, Yellowstone National Park is the first choice simply because it has the highest concentration of geothermal activity.
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Forrest Fenn has said to “look at the big picture” when considering the clues.
If by “big picture” he means to look
 at a single map (a literal big picture)
of the entire search area (the Rocky Mountains), the first clue, at least, must be large enough to be seen on that map. Could this be why the “little girl in India” can’t get closer than the first two clues if all she has is the poem and a single map of the entire Rockies?
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In school, every child learns about the water cycle, in which water flows downhill into ponds, lakes, and oceans where it collects until evaporated. Is this why Fenn said “kids may have an advantage in the search.”?

 

Fenn said “There are many places in the Rocky Mountains where warm waters halt, and nearly all of them are north of Santa Fe.” This indicates that WWWH may be a fairly common geographical feature, like a lake, and nearly all lakes in the Rockies are north of Santa Fe.

 

Yellowstone Lake
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With many incoming tributaries, the most obvious place that water flows into in that region is Yellowstone Lake… a place where warm waters ‘halt’, in a general sense.

 

Consider these quotes by Forrest Fenn:
•“So many searchers are stomping on the ants while the elephants run by.” 
Does this mean WWWH is a large feature, but most searchers are mistakenly looking for something smaller like a hot spring?
•“People tend to over-complicate. Try to simplify if you can. That’s good advice.”
•“Look at the big picture, there are no short cuts.”
•“Although others were at the starting point I think their arrival was an aberration and they were oblivious to its connection with the poem.” 
Think of how many searchers have driven right past Yellowstone Lake on the way to their solves.
•“The solve is difficult for many searchers because their minds think the clues are tougher to decrypt than they really are. Some say they are trying to think outside the box, as if the solution lies somewhere out there. Until now I have resisted telling them to get back in the box where their thoughts are comfortable and flow more easily.”

 

Sound Phenomenon: 
Yellowstone Lake is the source of a long documented natural audio phenomenon called “lake music” or “lake whispers.” It is documented
via recordings and interviews on the National Park Service website. It is described as a widespread low sound that grows louder and more intense until it seemed to be coming from right overhead, then rapidly fade away.
It seems likely that Forrest Fenn may have heard this sound phenomenon given the amount of time he spent in this region.
Fenn has said “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.”
Is the line in the poem “So hear me all and listen good” a hint about the Yellowstone Lake whispers?
Hear me all = A widespread sound covering a large area

Listen good = A low sound you need to listen closely to, like a whisper

 

Elephant Back Mountain 
Screen Shot 2019 07 28 at 12 48 54 PM
Other considerations:
•Forrest Fenn spent every summer in Yellowstone as a child.
•He visited Yellowstone nearly every year of his life.
•He has stated that his heart is in Yellowstone.
•A chapter in his book is titled “In Love with Yellowstone”.
•He said he has an almost “umbilical” attachment to the hiding place. 
Does this mean he discovered the special place in his youth?
•“So many searchers are stomping on the ants while the elephants run by.” 
Elephant Back Mountain overlooks Yellowstone Lake.
•Yellowstone Lake is also the only lake in the Rockies with a “thumb.” 
Does this have relevance to the Philadelphia story in the book The Thrill of the Chase where he has a profound experience covering all of Philadelphia with his left thumb while flying? The thumb of Yellowstone Lake is known as “West Thumb.”

 

CLUE #2 
And take it in the canyon down, Not far, but too far to walk. 

 

Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone 
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An obvious and massive natural feature of the landscape. Probably the most recognizable landmark in Yellowstone National Park. Yellowstone lake drains directly into this canyon.
Again, Forrest Fenn has said to “look at the big picture” when considering the clues. If this is the correct canyon, it may be why the Little Girl in India is able to see it on her map of the Rockies.
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Walking along the bottom of the canyon is not possible or practical, but there is a road that travels down the north side of the canyon and continues the length of the canyon, approximately 20 miles.
Does “I’ve done it tired” in the poem refer to driving a wheeled vehicle with tires?

 

Considerations:
•20-30 miles is too far to walk in a day’s hike, so you must drive.
•Going down the canyon, you pass Calcite Springs. He mentions “chalk” in TTOTC. Chalk is composed of calcite.
•“Marvel gaze” might be a reference to “Grand View” near the Yellowstone Falls in the canyon. Is this a hint from the poem indicating that you’re on the right track?

 

CLUE #3 
Put in below the home of Brown 

 

Roosevelt Lodge
Screen Shot 2019 07 28 at 12 56 54 PM ImageExtract 010
Emerging from the Grand Canyon of the Yellowstone, one of the first landmarks reached is Roosevelt Lodge at Tower Junction.
•An official name of a shade of brown is “Beaver”
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•The home of a beaver is a “lodge”


•The word origin of the word beaver means brown, both words share the same etymology
ImageExtract 015•A beaver lodge is entered from below. The poem says to “put in below the home of Brown”
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•Forrest has mentioned castor oil several times. The North American Beaver’s scientific name is Castor canadensis 
The B in Brown may be capitalized in the poem because this is the “word that is key” that needs to be focused on. It requires some abstract thinking and may be why some searchers figured out the first two clues but went right past the third.

 

Considerations: 
•From the blogs: In reference to Roosevelt Lodge, Diggin gypsy said: “…Forrest did tell my sister once make sure you check out the lodge” (hearsay)
•The man that had the first lodge there, before Roosevelt Lodge was built over it, Yancey, was rumored to have buried treasure around the Roosevelt lodge area just before his death. From the poem… “And hint of riches new and old.” Is the “old” treasure Yancey’s and the “new” treasure Forrest’s? Forrest Fenn often says “Two people can keep a secret if one of them is dead.”
•In TTOTC, right after the poem he mentions “Gardiner’s Island.” Gardiner, MT is the closest town to the search area.

 

Regarding “structures”:

“The treasure is not associated with any structure” – Forrest Fenn

“Mr. Fenn, when you said not associated with any structure did that mean all 9 clues or just where the chest sits? Thanks, d”

“Yes d, it means the treasure is not hidden in or about a structure. Google “structure” for more information.” – FF
This seems to indicate that the clues themselves can be associated with structures, but the physical treasure chest itself is not hidden in or about a structure.

 

CLUE #4 
From there it’s no place for the meek 
Lost Creek 
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Lost creek flows down the mountain behind Roosevelt Lodge.
Being “lost” is definitely no place for a meek person. Strength and decisiveness are necessary when you’re lost.

 

Considerations:
•Forrest writes about getting LOST with Donnie in The Thrill of the Chase
•The famous MEEK Cutoff wagon train got LOST and many pioneers died
•Teddy Roosevelt was certainly not known for being a meek person.

 

CLUE #5 
The end is drawing ever nigh 

 

Lost Creek draw Considerations:
• Another definition of “nigh” means “on the left side.” Lost creek is on the left as you travel down the canyon.
“Mr. Fenn, Is there any level of knowledge of US history that is required to properly interpret the clues in your poem. ~Steve R”
“No Steve R, The only requirement is that
you figure out what the clues mean. But a comprehensive knowledge of geography might help.” – FF
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A draw is a terrain feature formed by two parallel ridges or spurs with low ground in between them. The area of low ground itself is the draw, and it
is defined by the spurs surrounding it. Draws are similar to valleys on a smaller scale; however,
while valleys are by nature parallel to a ridgeline,
a draw is perpendicular to the ridge, and rises with the surrounding ground, disappearing up-slope. A draw is usually etched in a hillside by water flow, is usually dry, but many contain an ephemeral stream or loose rocks from eroded rockfall.
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Lost Creek draw Considerations: 
•This entire ridgeline was once part of a large petrified tree forest that extends along the south side of Lamar Valley all the way to Specimen Ridge. Petrified wood can still be found on this ridge line and around Lost Lake.
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•Is “If you are brave and in the wood” in the poem a play on words referring to entering the petrified forest area?
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•Did Fenn park his car at the Petrified Tree parking lot and walk the short distance to the spot (easy hike approx. 1 mile)?

 

Petrified Wood from Lost Lake area
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Petrified Tree at parking lot
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CLUE #6 
There’ll be no paddle up your creek 

 

Lost Creek Falls 
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Lost Creek Falls is a physical barrier that you can’t travel past going upstream. The walls of the draw are high and not easily climbable. The only way to get past the falls is to take an alternate route around them.

 

CLUE #7 
just heavy loads and water high 

 

Portage around Lost Creek Falls
Screen Shot 2019 07 28 at 1 24 14 PM
A portage is a term for carrying all of your gear (heavy loads) to get to the upper river (water high) beyond the obstacle, typically when paddling a canoe or raft. Forrest mentions Lewis & Clark in TTOTC. The Great Falls Portage is the route taken by the Lewis and Clark Expedition in 1805 to portage around the Great Falls of the Missouri River.
To portage around this waterfall, there is a trail that goes around by the Petrified Tree landmark and past Lost Lake.
There is a parking lot at the Petrified Tree where Forrest could have parked.

 

PORTAGE APPROX 1 MI.
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Also There is a huge out-of-place and prominent glacial boulder (heavy load) resting on the top edge of Lost Creek Falls. A definition of “load” is “the material carried along by a stream, glacier, ocean current, etc.”
Is the boulder an “aberration that lives out on the edge”?
There is also a small lake, Lost Lake, above the falls. Could this also be “water high”?

 

CLUE #8 
If you’ve been wise and found the blaze 

 

Unknown until at location

 

Considerations:
•Is the chest 200 feet upstream of the Lost Creek Falls, or 200 feet from the upper hiking trail?
•In a story in TTOTC, Forrest had a profound personal experience in a clearing above a waterfall in Vietnam
•Blaze is probably a permanent natural marker.
•Blaze possibly a discoloration or vein in a stone wall. This small canyon/draw is mostly comprised of basalt columns.
•Possibly a petrified log or wood (“If you are brave and in the wood”)?
•“While it’s not impossible to remove the blaze it isn’t feasible to try” – FF. Indicative of a large immobile feature. Geological?
•Does the blaze have a unique shape like a Y or an owl? (“If you’ve been wise and found the blaze”)
•Another word for ‘wise’ is sage. Along the tops of the draw along the creek are large sage fields.
•Forrest said you’d be able to smell sage and pine from the secret spot.
•He said if you’re standing where the chest is you’ll see animals. The ridge at the top of Lost Creek Falls overlooks Lamar Valley, known as the “Serengeti of Yellowstone” for it’s abundance of wildlife.

 

CLUE #9 
Look quickly down, your quest to cease 

 

Unknown until at location

 

Considerations:
• Chest is possibly located directly under the blaze
• Chest is possibly covered or slightly buried
• Is it in a wooden crate, or under some petrified wood? From the poem, “if you are brave and in the wood”?
• “I think the gold will again become alert to the tromp and vibrations of hiking boots.” – FF
• “Perhaps the artifacts are enjoying each other’s company as they patiently listen for the clomp of a boot.” – FF
• Possibly listen for a hollow sound underfoot

• “Physics tells me the treasure is wet.” – FF

• “I know the treasure chest is wet.” – FF

• Wetness could be due to condensation on the cool bronze chest
• Wetness could be due to proximity to year-long water source. Lost creek flows year-long.

 

BLOG COINCIDENCES:

Splitting the pot & gas money:
Bill on April 29, 2014 said:
Who can I trust? I learned of Mr. Fenn’s treasure late last night, and as crazy as I know it sounds, feel very strongly that I know exactly where it is. I believe fresh eyes can make the biggest difference sometimes. I would go out there myself to claim it if I could. Unfortunately, I don’t have the money or the time off work. I live in St. Louis. With a partner, I am willing to split the pot into thirds. One third for me, one third for my partner, and one third to hide in a new location, after making a new riddle, of course. So who can I trust that could go to Yellowstone after the snow melts (I’m assuming it’s still snow covered)? I need someone in good physical shape as there is a pretty good hike involved and also someone brave and not afraid of the dark.

 

Bill on June 6, 2014 said:
Still no one wants to partner with me? The northern part of yellowstone is where you would be travelling. And if the treasure was not there, I’d even split the cost of gas with you. You can walk there but you have to be in good shape and brave as you do go off trail a bit. The walk is probably three miles round trip.

 

Question posted July 2, 2014 to Forrest Fenn:

“Do you think that someone who is sure about the location of the home of Brown could reverse-engineer where warm waters halt?” ~Ben Raylor
“Thanks for the question Ben. If you are sure about the location of home of Brown why are you concerned about where warm waters halt? But to answer your question, sure you could and a few searchers might throw in some gas money for a percentage of the take. Good luck. f”

 

200 feet vs. 500 feet:
On June 21, 2014 Bill posted a full solve related to Lost Creek Falls. His solve used different solutions to the clues than this solve does, but they led him to Lost Creek Falls. He thought the chest was somewhere near the base of the waterfall. He didn’t search above the falls.
In his search he went all the way up to the actual base of the waterfall. Most people stop approximately 300 feet back where the official trail ends. In Bill’s solve he said “when you walk the trail and get to Lost Creek Falls you are 500 feet or less from the falls as Forrest said people have been.”
Then, two months later, Forrest makes what appears to be the first public mention of someone getting within 200 feet.
• “Searchers have been within 200 feet”. – FF Aug 2014

 

Most people stop hereImageExtract 033
Lost Creek Falls is aprox 300ft from end of trail

 

“How do you know searchers have been within 200 feet of the treasure?”
“Well because people have told me exactly where they were. And that’s the only reason I know. That 200 feet is pretty accurate. But there weren’t
too many people within two hundred… lots of people within 500 feet of the treasure.” – FF

 

CONCLUSION:
Screen Shot 2019 07 28 at 1 40 30 PM
Searchers have been within 200 feet of the treasure at the base of the waterfall.
• The chest is wet
• Special place above waterfall?

 

I believe Forrest Fenn’s treasure chest lies within 
a 200-500 foot radius upstream of Lost Creek Falls.
ImageExtract 036
“I knew exactly where to hide the chest so it would be difficult to find but not impossible. It’s in the mountains somewhere north of Santa Fe. So I wrote a poem containing nine clues that if followed precisely, will lead to the end of my rainbow and the treasure.”

 

-Desert Cloak

 

 

 

REFERENCES TO QUOTES

“Look at the big picture, there are no short cuts.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-questions-with-forrest-warm-waters-and-geography/

Little girl from India
http://mysteriouswritings.com/six-questions-with-forrest-fenn-over-five-years-of-the-thrill-of-the-chase/

“kids may have an advantage in the search.”
Moby Dickens interview 12/2/13

“There are many places in the Rocky Mountains where warm waters halt, and nearly all of them are north of Santa Fe.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-questions-with-forrest-warm-waters-and-geography/

“So many searchers are stomping on the ants while the elephants run by.”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2o1vXgBNso4

“People tend to over-complicate. Try to simplify if you can. That’s good advice.”
https://abcnews.go.com/US/people-continue-seek-reported-hidden-treasure-rocky-mountains/story?id=51766060

“Although others were at the starting point I think their arrival was an aberration and they were oblivious to its connection with the poem.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase/

“The solve is difficult for many searchers because their minds think the clues are tougher to decrypt than they really are. Some say they are trying to think outside the box, as if the solution lies somewhere out there. Until now I have resisted telling them to get back in the box where their thoughts are comfortable and flow more easily.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-question-and-weekly-words-from-forrest-fenn-get-back-in-the-box/

“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.”
https://dalneitzel.com/2014/04/23/scrapbook-sixty_one-2/

“I am almost umbilically attached to the spot…”
https://mysteriouswritings.com/six-questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase-seven-is-a-perfect-number/

“The treasure is not associated with any structure”
https://dalneitzel.com/cheat-sheet/

“Yes d, it means the treasure is not hidden in or about a structure. Google “structure” for more information.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase/

“No Steve R, The only requirement is that you figure out what the clues mean. But a comprehensive knowledge of geography might help.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-questions-with-forrest-warm-waters-and-geography/

While it’s not impossible to remove the blaze it isn’t feasible to try”
Dal’s Blog – The Nine Clues…Part Thirtyone / September 26, 2014

Seeing animals and smelling sage
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJBakBqwQVs&t=8s

“I think the gold will again become alert to the tromp and vibrations of hiking boots.”
https://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-question-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase-treasure-hunt-lost-treasure-thoughts/

“Perhaps the artifacts are enjoying each other’s company as they patiently listen for the clomp of a boot.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/six-questions-with-forrest-fenn-and-the-thrill-of-the-chase-seven-is-a-perfect-number/

“Physics tells me the treasure is wet.”
http://mysteriouswritings.com/featured-question-with-forrest-and-weekly-words-wet-physics/

“I know the treasure chest is wet.”
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aJBakBqwQVs&t=8s

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Finding Forrest

August 2019

By Casey

 

Background

I hope that this post finds all you seekers well. I am sending this into the group with humility and hope. I hope to show a different way of riding a bicycle, even if the end result for me has been the same for all of you. I hope that this will lead to someone finding the chest by looking at a different, but not too outside-of-the-box, way of thinking about the solve. 

I come to you as a geography and travel enthusiast. I have been lucky enough to have been able to drive through all of the lower 48 states and have been able to witness the majestic views of our National Parks and true beauty of the United States. Up until spring of 2018 (yes, I know I am a newbie, but stick with me here), I had never heard of Mr. Fenn. Then, I came across an article published on CNBC on April 18, 2018. Little did I know that this little article would lead to a head scratching door of discovery and wonder. 

“Read the clues in my poem over and over and study maps of the Rocky Mountains,” Fenn recently told Business Insider. “Try to marry the two. The treasure is out there waiting for the person who can make all the lines cross in the right spot.”

With this little article I was off. As many people do, I immediately came up with different solves by looking at the poem systematically based on different geologic features and names of places. I looked at Yellowstone and the Hebgen Lake area, I looked around Lander, WY and Sinks Canyon. Many similar methods that have been worked over the last 8 years and I was afraid many similar results by going down that rabbit hole. 

So, I took a small step back. Forrest has stated (paraphrasing), that only a few people had a tight focus on a word that was key. So, to me, this is where the rubber meets the road. What key word would unlock the clues so that you could marry a map to specific locations to make the lines cross at the right spot? Forrest states that you need a good map and a comprehensive knowledge of geography. No specialized knowledge is needed. Google defines geography as “the study of the physical features of the earth and its atmosphere, and of human activity as it affects and is affected by these, including the distribution of populations and resources, land use, and industries.”

So how do we unlock the keyword? The answer, I believe, is in the first stanza. Before I get there, let me give you a little background on myself. Like Forrest, I grew up in a small town in the rural US. Temple, Texas is actually quite a bit bigger than the town I grew up in a podunk town in Minnesota.  We had a K-12 school, with about 20 kids in each class. In analyzing the poem, I was reminded of a geography contest in 5th grade that I won. Honestly, it isn’t difficult to win contests in a small school when you only have about 20 competitors. The competition was cryptic lines in which you had to decipher and match to different geography features. If my mind serves me, it was rivers; but that is unimportant. What sparked my interest was that they were different clues about one type of feature. In a way, this is how ciphers worked with regards to Thomas Jefferson communicating with Lewis and Clark. However, no ciphers needed here. 

So again, what single geographic term, place, location, etc. could reference all nine clues in which you were able to put 9 x’s on a map and make them cross to find a spot to search? The answer has to be specific, you aren’t able to put an ‘x’ on a map by using locations that can’t be to a single set of coordinates. For example, lakes, rivers, canyons, won’t work. Mountain peaks would, which was my first guess. So looking at lists of mountain peaks in the four states, and spending a few days analyzing the poem I came up with…. Nothing. Ghost towns? Nothing. Bridges. Nothing. Now, realize when I say nothing. I don’t mean that there aren’t any clues that match up. Some do. By coincidence, it is likely that some will. But to get nine in a relatively small area to match up. Nothing. 

“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.”

Then I came across something: Sante Fe mountain in Colorado. Back to mountain peaks. So I started diving into topographical maps of the Clear Creek and Gilpin county areas in Colorado. What I found wasn’t mountain peaks that sparked my interest, it was the names of a couple of mines in the area. Before I go further, yes, I know the chest is not in a mine. Please, just stick with me.  A few of the names were solid matches to mines in the area. But still, I know I needed to find the first clue. Mines fit the description of the first stanza and the heavy loads clue, so it could be it. 

Clue 1: Begin it where warm waters halt

At first, I started with the mine at Indian Hot Springs in the town of Idaho Springs. Not a great match, but supposedly the hot springs stopped for a time because of the mining next to it. I didn’t like it as a solid match, but I will come back to that. 

Clue 2: And take it in the canyon down

Downie Mine. Up by Central City. 

Clue 3: Not far, but too far to walk

Four mile gulch mine. Four miles isn’t far, but it is a decent amount to walk. 

Clue 4: From there, it’s no place for the meek

Meeker Mine. Did I really just skip over home of Brown? Yes. However, home of brown in this case could mean the general area (Central City) is the home of Aunt Clara Brown in which a hill is named after her. It formerly had a different name that needed to change. See historical maps. Home of brown could also refer to a second layer that I don’t have unlocked.

Clue 5: There’ll be no paddle up your creek

Reider Mine. Who’s creek. Yours. The reader of the poem. Out of all the clues, I feel that this is the one that is the most sketchy. But it’s a kind of riddle within the riddle. 

Clue 6: If you’ve been wise

Druid Mine. A druid is a type of wise Celtic priest by definition. 

Clue 7: and found the blaze

Blazing Star Mine or Fireman and Conductors Mine. These two mines are in the same general vicinity, so I will use an X on each of them for my map for two different possibilities.

Clue 8: Look quickly down

Scandia Mine. Pretty straight forward, looking quickly means to scan. 

Clue 9: Go in Peace

Pease Mine. Also pretty straightforward. 

Some of the other lines in the poem also can be interpreted into mines in the area. This is what I believe Forrest made more difficult in his revisions. He added different words to add in more choices or options in the map. 

Before I map this out and show you what it looks like, let me fast-forward you to two searches and 6 months later. I hadn’t gotten my final WWWH yet, and I decided to go up and check the area out. Laugh now. Take the chest and go in peace. It must be around, but not in, the Pease mine, right? After days of searching at 9000+ feet, which for a flatlander who now lives in Texas, I was tired and disappointed. These two searches definitely helped me get a lay of the land and scope things out. It also made me realize I needed to be more precise. 

So I took a respite of a couple months to let the disappointment wear off. What did I do wrong? So back to clue #1. WWWH. You will never get the chest without knowing WWWH. In reviewing a list of all the historical mines in the counties, I finally found it. Something that I overlooked the first few months.

Clue 1: Begin it where warm waters halt

Thirty second mine. Water freezes at 32 degrees, could this really be it? 

So this is where the magic happens. I did this without looking at every scrapbook. I hadn’t seen a lot of the confirmation bias areas that I mention below. I left Idaho Springs in as a potential second option, but when you map this out, you get this pattern:

  Zooming in on the search area: 

The red line signifies the main outline of drawing a line from Clue #1 through to Clue #9. When I first drew this, I had never seen Scrapbook 126 or Forrest’s hat, ‘mildew’. When I did see that, I saw some major confirmation bias. Speaking of confirmation bias: here are the references in which Forrest mentions names of mines that are in the Central City, Colorado area. 

Confirmation Bias:

Mildew

image5

Denver Museum of Nature and Science – Has a Colorado Mining history permanent exhibit. Also launches tours from the museum of the area. 

Mines – 

Nevada

Toledo

Philadelphia

Boss

Grizzly

Tomahawk (SB126)

Mammoth

Santa Fe (it’s the name of a mine too)

Glory (is where you find it) Hole

Tucker

Sketchy confirmation bias:

3 jars of Cloves – clovis. If you look at a historical topographical map of this area, you will see that the hill is called Quartz Hill. I believe that this is a reference to the 3 quartz clovis points of Fenn’s collection.

Prize Mine- He mentions prize so many times, could he be referring to Prize mine or is it just a coincidence? Probably a coincidence.

Dimensions – He mentions dimensions alot. Many dimensions that he mentions are also dimensions of boring equipment for mines. Coincidence? Maybe. 

Forrest never mentions this area in the book. But is definitely a potential pass by spot on the way to Yellowstone from Central Texas. The hole in the hat is about where the richest square mile on earth is. It would have been a good area to explore as a Principal of a school with kids

The two main search areas in focus are the two on the red line on the left. This is the line that runs from the Thirty Second Mine to the Downie Mine and intersects with Blazing Star/Firemans mines and Scandia Mine. These two areas are close to the top of Quartz Hill, but not at the top and about 200 feet or so off the main road, which if dry, you can drive.

Getting there. To get there, you start below the home of brown and drive through the old ghost  town of Nevadaville.  Not  only do you see the old run down buildings (see Google Earth), but you also see the Nevadaville gulch which has signs that the one below: “Impassable during high water”. 

image11

Quartz Hill is made up of a mix of private land mine claims, BLM Lands, and USFS lands. Some areas are posted and you could be convicted for trespassing, and some areas are open and you can travel across. I took a lot of time researching who owned what parcels so that I could be very cautious about where I traveled and what property I was on and when. At the end of Nevadaville road is the junction of Roy Smith Rd. This road goes over Quartz Hill and Alps Hill, splitting the two. I parked here and walked the short distance to both spots. There is a small elevation change of a couple hundred feet, and you could easily drive up if you wanted to. There is a horse stable that does tours on this road once or twice a day, but really that is the only traffic that I have seen in my multiple trips to the area. 

Spot 1: Blazing Star to Scandia/Thirty Second to Downie

This area is on BLM land, as you are walking up Roy Smith you are in a mix of Aspen and Pine trees. A little way up the road, I came across this: 

image9

When I got to the spot where I needed to enter the woods, I saw a series of markers on the ground, approximately 25-50’ apart leading into the woods towards my spot. 

image8

 My spot just happened to be located about 200’ off of the main road, and looked like this. 

image2

I looked around the area with a metal detector and searched in the nooks and crannies, however nothing was found. I wasn’t too keen on this area as this was an old mining area and I felt that it went against Forrest’s “not in a mine” quote, even if technically it wouldn’t have been in a mine. Too close. 

Spot #2:

Fireman’s Mine to Scandia/ Thirty Second to Downie

This area has a mix of BLM/USFS/Private Land, so you need to be very careful and intentional where you go. When I got to the GPS location of the spot, I started by searching in a 25 foot radius of the GPS location. I then found this:

image10s

Looks like an arrow pointing in a direction, right? Pretty neat, if you ask me, even if not by Forrest.  This ‘arrow’ pointed to a tree, and on the other side of the tree was this:

image7

 It is a marker of a cow (or similar) pelvis. It isn’t wildlife that is native to the area, so it’s definitely something that someone brought to the area and planted. I can also tell you that there is a great deal of decay of the bones so its been there for many years. It is next to a marker that looks like a gravestone. Obviously, it’s been marked with trail marking tape. This area, I extensively searched. I had my shovel with me along with my metal detector. As this is the forest floor, there are years of pine needles covering the ground.  Hold the pelvic bone up and you find that it looks like a particular symbol:

 Maybe it was here and someone found it? Maybe. Could it be a plant of someone who had the same idea? Possibly. Could it be just a coincidence. Of course. 

Spots #3 & #4:

Blazing Star to Scandia/Idaho Falls to Downie
Firemans to Scandia/Idaho Falls to Downie

These two spots weren’t fruitful, except for the views, which were remarkable. They are both relatively close to one another, a little more difficult of a walk to get to, but still accessible for someone in shape in their 70s. No signs of anything, but here are a couple pictures of the remarkable views; they don’t really do it justice.

image4

image6

In conclusion:

I am not a statistician, but I do know that it isn’t very likely (not impossible) that all of these spots line up as well as they do. While a couple of the mines may be a stretch to fit the clues, many fit well. I was able to access a mining database with all the historical mines in the Rockies. Through this, I can safely say that there is not another area within the Rockies that this methodology works. At least, none that I found. Does it mean its on the right path? Of course not, there is no way to know that unless I had the chest. And while I didn’t find a chest full of riches, I did find a way to exercise my brain and my legs. My heart is full of love for this area and my mind is full of imagination and wonder of the possibilities of things to come.

-Casey

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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.