Looking Back on TTOTC: Featured Question with Forrest

thrill of the chaseAs of now, some 4 1/2 years after the release of the book with the poem, is there anything you would have done different, looking back? ~Mz Oz.



Well Mz Oz, there are minor mistakes in my book but they are not serious enough for me to change in reprint. Looking back, there are only 28,800 words in TTOTC and the book is thin. I might have added some additional stories, like the one about me losing the coon skin cap trying to stay ahead of a mad bull moose up Slough Creek. Or the one about my father throwing me off of a footbridge across the Madison River in the dark of night because some large animal was coming toward us and we didn’t want to meet it in the middle. I was anxious to get my treasure story in print. I have no regrets. f



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20 Responses

  1. jdiggins says:

    TTOTC is perfect, as is. But, would love to hear more about the tidbits of stories you tease us with! You realize you are a hero to us. We imagine being you in your stories! Thank you forrest, just for being you. 🙂

  2. Jenny Kile says:

    Thanks Forrest. I love all the stories in your book, and am glad you continue to share your stories on Dal’s blog and such. For me, they hold pieces of gold to find in themselves. Although ‘Tea with Olga’ was a serious story, I loved the wisdom at the end.

    I was wondering what stories or wisdom’s others liked?

    And Forrest, I also wondered which was/is your favorite to tell? And would there be a reason for that?

    • Liviu says:

      One wisdom nugget that I particularly liked, is about his painting that got stolen, and Forrest showed me the filled half of the glass when said that he was pleased that someone liked his painting. It resonated strong with me, because I draw once in pencil on a 24″x36″ paper the album cover of Queen’s “The Miracle” ( I’ve done a lot of drawings in graphite and that one was the only one in color).
      The morphing of the faces turned out quite well, much better that I expected, and I had it hanging above my desk at work (I really like Queen 🙂 ). Over the Christmas holidays, a heating water pipe burst, and a maintenance crew came in to fix it. When we got back at the beginning of January next year, my drawing was gone.
      This was in 1990-1991 and I always felt angry whenever I’d think about it, but since reading his philosophical approach, I feel OK with it, and for that I’m thankful to Forrest.

  3. Forrest Fenn says:

    Jenny, I love it when you flatter me. There are interesting tales stored in the minds of all who are adventurous. Many of your readers fit that description, and your Six Questions feature on this blog exponds (I like that word even if it isn’t real) some of them. Hopefully your readers will continue asking questions that make me search for answers.

    • The Wolf says:

      Hello Mr. Fenn,
      I must have ants in my pants because I have to ask you a question, who would you rather be, Capt Ahab or James Bond? Also, what would you rather do, star gaze or clean your bathroom? Got to go, my sister Josephine is calling.
      The Wolf

  4. William says:

    I had a solve that had slough creek in it. Did a lot of research on the valley that leads to east and west horseshoe mountains. The valley is described as the most beautiful valley in the country and when the chase is completed for me I will find my family and I for the day in that most majestic Valley

  5. E* says:

    Forrest – I want to hear that whole story,…the one about your father throwing you off the footbridge. You did say a “large animal”,…so I was thinking he saved you from the Grizz,…but then I wondered about the possibility of a vicious otter?:


    Oh,…but he threw you off the bridge,…INTO the water,…didn’t he? 🙂

  6. William says:

    I have a off topic question, Is all the ties in your closet Christmas gifts? I don’t really take you as a tie person.

  7. lia says:

    Forrest, your stories are endearing taking us all back to memories of our own childhood days, and I admit to falling in love with the adorable 8 year old boy on the cover of ttotc who could out shoot and out fish men. It sounds like some of your best stories are yet to be told. I hope you’ll do so.

  8. Mark J says:

    Mr. Fenn, was that the coon skin cap that you are pictured with in TTOTC when you and Donny rented the horses to go chasing after Lewis and Clark?

  9. Eliza says:

    Both 4.5 and 28,800 are precisely twice perfect squares (1.5 and 120). There is also that reference to Meeting in the Middle. The question begins with A and ends with Z. M is as close to the middle of the alphabet as one can get. Maybe squaring numbers is supposed to make us think of pairing letters of the alphabet with their twins…

  10. lia says:

    Eliza, because you presented an interesting bent, I wrote out the alphabet several times pairing letters in different combinations, and even designated squares of 4 paired letters. I’m whipped. not a clue how it may relate to solves. “Middle” components I understand and can implement various applications to my current solve. Are you able to give an ie of how to utiilize letter pairing?

  11. astree says:


    Just a bit of distraction for you, another puzzle, the Shugborough Hall inscription:



    As 8 letters between the D and M (and 8 symbols) , in the middle being ” HI ”

    HI DM

    HID M 🙂


    • DeeepThnkr says:

      I have used the same technique with vv=ten as a word and ten = w and one = 1 or vice versa on messages from Fenn in an email. Interesting message I once interpreted.

      • Point Foot says:

        I’m starting to see the pattern with your post DeepThnkr. That really is an interesting technique with the matched pairs. I remember seeing a similar matched set somewhere recently… maybe it was in a book or an email. Thinking of coded messages reminds me of a movie I very much enjoyed watching called the Imagination Game. That movie blew my mind.

  12. Eliza says:


    The short answer is I can’t, but at one point it seemed to me that each of the nine clues had a “twin” hidden somewhere else in the puzzle. I thought this might, among other things, serve to pay homage to Forrest’s mother, who had a twin sister.


    Ah ha! A good reminder that some puzzles never get solved!

  13. lia says:

    Eliza – thanks for the response. I’m aware of the twins but not able to find more than a few. imo some may be as simple as rhyming words, but ff is far to clever for me.

    Astree – the possible inscription related to grail location was a fun historical trail today. Thanks, I learn so much to be intriqued about following the blogs.

  14. locolobo says:

    LOL!! You always make me laugh, Forrest!! You certainly had a couple of large paddles behind you the when you lost your cap going up the creek. Glad they didn’t catch you!! 🙂

    And there is that word again!!…middle…I have seen middle, halfway, center, tight focus, etc. That seems to be where I am now. I am at midway with a lion in front of me and Hades behind. What to do? Climb the tree and hope for a mattress?? Or forge upward, down the yellow road from camp??? Oh, this is all making me so peaked!!

    Throw another log on the fire and we’ll sort it all out.

    Thanks again Forrest, and Jenny. You are two of the Best!!!

  15. locolobo says:

    Forgive me Jenny, but I need to edit the above post.

    I meant to say:

    I have seen middle, halfway, center, tight focus, etc……And let’s not forget “So-So”.

    Thank you again for indulging me, Jenny! 🙂

  16. Uken2it says:

    Hey Wolf,
    You were being a bit cryptic above but the answer I have for James Bond is that he needs to rejet his bathtub which by the way is considered a Trojan by some, especially the janitor.

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