Featured Question with Forrest Fenn on The Thrill of the Chase Treasure Hunt: Know the Limits
I am reading that several people have been lost while looking for your treasure. On Monday we will go on our first search and we are a little apprehensive. Since you are the only one who knows where it is hidden can you give me some advice that will help keep us safe? ~ Mrs SRM and son.
Yes Mrs. M, your email is timely, and because you are new to the search I will reiterate what has been said many times on blogs and in the media. If you plan to search in a National Forest or a National Park you should ask a ranger to brief you on your particular area. They can advise you much better than I can.
It is easier to get lost or stranded in the winter time because the weather is such a factor. But the spring and summer conditions can be just as unforgiving if you are not prepared.
Please don’t ever overextend yourself. I was 80 or about when I hid the treasure and it was not a difficult task. I will soon be 87 and I could go back and get it if I were so inclined, I think.
If you or your son have any physical limitations please don’t attempt the search. Many flatlanders suffer altitude sickness in the Rockies.
Don’t go into the mountains alone. Two searchers together is an absolute minimum, but three or even four is better. Stay within eyesight of each other. A whistle can be valuable if you get separated.
Food, water, proper clothing, matches, bug spray, and a GPS are requirements. Cell phone service is not available in many mountain locations, but take one anyway. If you do have service check in with a friend at home several times a day, and give them a GPS location. They should know where and when you started your search and when you expect to return.
Wearing waders in fast moving water is dangerous, especially if you don’t have the chest type with a tight belt around your chest that will keep most of the water out if you should fall. The rocks in most moving water are slippery and falling is easy. Your waders should have felt soles and not rubber. Don’t take chances, and remember that in many cases no can be a better answer than yes.
You don’t have to move big rocks, or scale a precipice to get to the treasure. Stay away from dangerous terrain.
The summer sun can sap your strength so it is best to wear long sleeves, long pants, and always a hat, especially in New Mexico. At the first sign of fatigue, turn back. If you are not camping plan to be out of the mountains before dark. If your solve is in the desert, get a new solve, and remember, much of the Rio Grande River is not in the Rocky Mountains.
Generally, black bears are not a problem, and they normally will run at first sight. The grizzly can be a problem but rarely is. If you are hiking, use your whistle so as to not surprise him. If you see cubs quickly move away. It is not a good idea to make eye contact with any dangerous animal because they may see it as a threat. Use bear spray only as a last resort.
Caution and common sense are your best weapons in the mountains. Hope this helps Mrs. M, but you should also do your own research. f
Best of luck with all you seek! Always Treasure the Adventure! Stay Safe!Follow MW on Social Media: