I hesitate to tell this story because crossing rivers are dangerous. If you choose to go where my partner went, proceed at your own risk. I have to admit that I have not ruled this area out because my team did not search the area as well as we could have because I couldn’t safely cross the Madison River. Kendrick, a Boise think tank founder, looked for clues as I watched for Grizzly bears from the opposite bank. Today I feel the treasure is not in that space. However, this is the most straightforward solve I have come up with since Sphinx Creek almost eight years ago. Maybe mom was right about the first instinct.
Forrest says he is tied like an umbilical cord to this place. Forrest’s rainbow ends where he was when he was young. What better place than the Madison river for catching his fly-line. The Firehole river meets the Madison river where, in this solve, warm water halts.
In the book “The Thrill of the Chase” Forrest describes bathing in the Firehole and sitting just far enough from the hot water source to be comfortable. Forrest, when asked what he means by warm water, responded warm water is comfortable. Forrest also said the book had, unintentionally, described some clues from the poem was used to tell us where the treasure may be found. The Madison river goes down a canyon and Forrest’s writing he tells us how far down the canyon to go. He said from the Barns hole to Baker’s hole is not too far but too far to walk. That distance from Firehole down the canyon takes us to the Barns fishing holes on the Madison River. No paddle up your creek must be no more than a mile. We know this because Mr. Fenn tells us how far he walked from the car to hide his gold. Not for the meek is crossing the river which I couldn’t due to recent spine surgery. That is why I became the look out for my friend Kendrick. The cold in this solution is a cold water spring about three-quarters of the way down the river. The cold spring is the first tributary going into the Madison after Firehole. Forrest has said many times people get the first two clues then pass by the other seven . Here he may be referring to Hebgen or Quake lake. Kendrick did not find the treasure but he found lots of hiding places. The spot we were on was a fishing hole where a little girl caught a record Brown; it seems cold water entering the warmer river gives trout an excellent place to hang out. Locals say this hole washed out several years ago.
I asked Forrest Fenn about this cold water entering the Madison River but he said he didn’t know of any inside Yellowstone park. Hum. His brother and he owned the Dude motel in West Yellowstone. The motel is on Boundary Street. The street is the Yellowstone Park boundary. Across the street from Forrest’s motel is a trail. The trail goes into the park and there is no one watching. That trail goes to the Madison River just below this great fishing hole where cold water enters the warmer Madison but Forrest Fenn, a fishing guide, on this very river doesn’t know about that hole where he and his dad went often. Did I mention Captain Brown led the cavalry stationed at River Side; a town on the Madison River above Barns holes? All the clues fit.
Today I feel the Firehole is not a clue because I believe he did not mention any of the clues in the book. He never said he put clues in the book; he said there were descriptions of what the clues were in the book. Let me give an example of what I believe he means. In his book, he describes his trip to the Firehole. Here he has to get to just the right spot to bathe. That spot was the comfortable one; any farther downriver would be too cold as warm waters halt. If this is correct it rules out the Madison river unless there is a hot water feature below Quake lake.
With this new perspective, I feel looking in Gardiner Montana was a better choice than looking in West Yellowstone. Here we use the starting point at Boiling River near Mammoth Springs. This is an excellent place to bathe and it is on the way to Livingston from West Yellowstone. Livingston is home to his Forrest mother.
After four years of looking in the Gardiner area, it seems I’m back. But finding a new search area doesn’t seem possible so this song comes to mind. This could be the last time. This might be the last time, maybe the last time , could be the last time but I don’t know. Oh no!