Cowboy: A Treasure Hunt
Cowboy is an exciting treasure hunt story created in 2010 by Domino Ireland. Somewhere in the lower 48 states is one thousand dollars, cash, hidden for someone to find. Who wouldn’t want to find an extra thousand dollars? For those who enjoy a challenge, the treasure waits to be discovered!
Clues to the treasure consist partly of a tale of 45 pages; well sort-of. Although the book ends the story on a page numbered 45, there is a blank page (unnumbered) deliberately placed between pages 33 and 34 in the book I received. Questions have even been raised at whether page 1 should really be numbered page 2. So does the tale actually include 46, 47, or 48 pages? As with all armchair treasure hunt books, a puzzler is always considering the details. Maybe they hold meaning, maybe they don’t.
The book immediately draws the reader in. There are obvious puzzles to be solved scattered all through-out Cowboy; a word search, crossword, maze, mysterious strings of symbols, miscellaneous bold, capped, italicized or other letters. These are only some examples of the challenges to face the seeker. It seems some are easier than others. Assumingly, the more difficult ones may reveal the specifics about the location of the buried cash. Readers are also warned of multi-layered puzzles. Could an assumed easy solve, hold another layer?
Domino (the Author), has said one of the easiest puzzles, even the ‘first’ puzzle, reveals the state the treasure is hidden in. I was initially intrigued by page 7. I like to start with lucky number 7. On this page, eleven Big and Small circles are positioned across the page of text. They are an obvious ‘something’.
I know X never marks the spot, except when it does. So I checked to see if this was a case when never wasn’t always. It would seem to me, the center point of each circle (given by making an X) reveals a letter. The ‘Big’ circles seem to provide the letters, “E,N,O,C,N. As there are other ‘mirrored’ items in Cowboy, I wondered if this could be a clue to NC, ONE or North Carolina, ONE? First puzzle? Highway One on the coast? (there is coast to coast in the text on this page)
Interestingly, the Smaller circles seem to pinpoint the letters, A,A,R,E,M,Y. This anagrams to ‘MY AREA’. Domino lives in North Carolina. Is this a confirmer? Does X mark the state?
I don’t know for sure, (it may not), but, I do like the fact that there is a branding iron with the word BIG in shape of a bow tie on page 24. This is mirrored, as most branding irons are, and is circled, just like the above letters on page 7 of the book. Could BIG hint at the BIG circles? The letter I of this BIG word is also in center, and in the shape of a bow tie. These bow tie shapes (or hourglass/time shapes) can be found at the very end of the book which suggests the shape of an X and connects to the image of the five white stones the treasure is said to be hidden within.
These are only some of my first notes which I placed on a page with a trio of music notes on top; implying the page was for taking notes.
However, there are many more notes shared by other puzzlers on the treasure hunt forum of Tweleve.org, under, what else? Cowboy Treasure Hunt.
Hope to see you there! And as I continue to work on Cowboy, I will also be sharing thoughts here. So hope to see you here too! Lol.
Best of luck!