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I had always felt a great treasure hunt would be defined by the creator's ability to place hints right under the searcher's nose without anyone noticing. I have always believed Mr. Fenn is a great treasure hunt designer, thus how did he hide the hints under our noses?
The first place we need to look for is something he said repeated since day one and that statement is "The treasure is hidden somewhere in the Rocky Mountains north of Santa Fe"
What if this often repeated statement is the hint under our noses? What if this is a riddle we needed to solve? Use your imagination, remember it is a requirement!
Lets break it down. Rocky was added later so lets leave it until the end. First the word "somewhere" when we apply his suggestion of listen good translates to "sum wear" and the solution to sum wear is "Addition Elle" the women's large clothing store and now how about the words north and Santa Fe? North and Santa is linked to Christmas and Fe is the atomic symbol for iron.
So when we put this all together, we get" large Iron Christmas Clothed Lady. This hint describes the 90 foot iron statue of the Virgin Mary located near Butte Montana.
Rocky is a little more imaginative and explains why it is optional. Rocky the boxer chased chickens just like the Indians did that his grandmother spoke of when she was young. Since this is the thrill of the chase, chickens is our answer. We had previously shown how Brown is Mary and Mary Brown is defined by her world famous fried chicken. The theme song of Rocky was Going Flying so go flying and see the arial shot from above Our Lady which looks like a chicken head.
Another word Mr. Fenn uses repeatedly is the word "hidden" and he constantly reminds journalists who use the word buried that it is hidden but follows with not that it couldn't be buried he just didn't want to give that as a clue. It is odd to repeat it so often, so what is the word "hidden" so important? From a treasure hunter perspective the clever response is "hi-dden" or "high den." This could translate into the answer of as I went alone in there as a high den. I have often said the ladder on the treasure chest is a hint as to what is required to reach the chest, since Mr. Fenn says it can not be stumbled upon.
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