The Passionate Treasure Hunter

There are two certainties in life: death and taxes. We can now add a third and that is the predictable passion exhibited by Fenn treasure hunters or "Fennatics." The recent threat to shut down the Fenn Treasure hunt and labelling it "nonsense" by the State Police Chief, produced a very predictable response. It invoked unity and sparked a outrage amongst the Fenn followers, led by Mr. Fenn's right hand man, Dal Neitzel.

This is not the first time this occurred, in fact, it is a repeat of history. A few years ago, the Fennatics were all over Yellowstone National Park, frantically scanning it with metal detectors, digging it up, getting lost and requiring rescue for risky river crossings. One couple nearly killed themselves twice trying to cross a raging river on a raft (sound familiar?) and were banned from the park. The ranger at the time, Ranger Tim Reid said searchers are a problem and searching in the park is illegal. Of course he was just doing his job, protecting the park and his staff from the unnecessary rescues. The efforts to install safety and common sense at that time provoked Dal Neitzel to publish this rant. There were many more, and Dal's zealots jumped on the band wagon crying for Ranger Reid's head. I think it eventually worked as he left the job within a year of the incident.

The whole event was quite comical. I mean the passion exhibited by the Fennatics was fascinating and of course I had to capture that event in my book Finding Forrest Fenn with an Indian Jones parody that spoofed this incident to open my book.

It was fun to write and most Fennatics didn't realize it was a parody but rather related to the event. Scary. So when, the New Mexico State Police Chief made his recent threats to cancel the Chase, it was deja vu all over again. With the passionate Fenn treasure hunter now a certainty in life, and the threat of stopping the chase known to provoke such extreme reactions from Dal Neitzel and his Fenn-atical followers, how will they react when the treasure is found and the hunt really is over? Take cover when that day comes...

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