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Forrest Fenn-Who Is The Lead Searcher celebrates

Forrest Fenn

Forrest Fenn-Who Is The Lead Searcher?

Forrest Fenn-Who Is The Lead Searcher?

Over the past 12 months, the lead searcher debate has found itself in nearly every discussion on youtube, the blogs, and forums.  The idea there is a searcher out there that is in front of everyone else has fascinating the Forrest Fenn community largely in part to every searcher thinking it is them.


Before we get into what lead searcher means, lets all agree there is definitely someone out there that has figured out more than the rest and, has communicated that to Forrest Fenn.  Many believe this is something conjured up by the searchers and such a person does not exist.  But in our line of work, we do not go off of opinions or feelings.  We make decisions based off the evidence.


Forrest Fenn’s actions as of Jan. 2018 say someone is close.  He didn’t go 8 years giving constant hints and words to suddenly stop and say he has a gut feeling it will be found.  Thats just the simple truth.  Those who choose to believe there is not a lead searcher are doing so because they know they do not have any viable solutions to the poem, and they choose to believe what they want.

But….what does “lead searcher” mean? To put it in perspective, who can tell who led the Daytona 500 in 2013 for 75% of the race, all to lose in the end.  Without a google look up, none of you.  The difference is, he still finished 5th and got a pay check.

Being in the lead in this treasure hunt is worthless.  The person who has figured out 8 clues may not be able to solve the rest.  They may simply get lazy, give up, or get distracted.  The point is, knowing there is a lead searcher out there should not deter anyone from picking up the hunt or continuing their quest for the treasure.

So how can we figure out who this lead searcher is?.  Well, a little phycology is what we will use to try and narrow this down.  The “lead searcher” should have the following characteristics:

  1. They will be part of the community but likely not extremely well known.
  2. They will interact on different social media outlets but not at a high level unless they currently have a channel or blog.
  3. They will not be one of the ones claiming to know where the treasure is in the forums or youtube.
  4. They will not be one that has a lot of interaction with Forrest over the past couple of years.
  5. Most of all, they will be ones who never discuss anything about their solution.

If you were to watch all the youtube videos for the next week, write all the names down in chat, and then apply the list above to those names, you could probably narrow that list of 200 down to 30. Odds are, one of those 30 are the lead searcher Forrest Fenn has been eluding to over the past 18 months.  The real question is, can they finish it?




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nmcDizzy DeanSacha JohnstonBillCaptainAhabseeks Recent comment authors
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I agree 100%. I am positive there is a searcher Forrest expects to find the treasure soon but worry about them is a waste of time.

Man Alone

I’m of a different opinion. I’ve never heard Fenn recognize or state that there is a lead searcher, this term having simply been a manufactured product of the community. Feen’s “gut feeling” statement was made at the start of search season, this having been reduced to “wavering” by that same fall. So, how can a searcher be “that close” to a recovery without ever making it through an entire search season? There can be many reasons for “gut feelings” as we all have them many times that turn out to be wrong. But that facts seem to point to “failed… Read more »

Dizzy Dean

I do not like the term lead searcher myself. It seems silly to term something in such away. But I am of the opinion the is someone close to solving it. That could be someone who has figured out much of it but not searched, or someone who has been physically close. Either way, I would say the odds are good its found this year.


Forrest eventually said that his “gut feeling” was not based on any particular facts. My belief is that Forrest’s gut feeling was based on information such as the release of specific Scrapbooks,books and letters etc. He felt that information would expedite the final solve for anyone close. His gut only began to waver after the information failed to provide the solve in a timely fashion. Consider the timeline between the beginning of the actual search season and the wavering.


No lead searcher. I think it is assumed there is one but Forrest never said it. He just said he had a gut feeling it will be found. But as late as last summer he said we are all missing something. One important possibility. I believe the gut feeling was just to bring numbers and excitement back up in the lull of the season.

Sacha Johnston

I disagree with you on one point here. It is where you have contradicted yourself. If there is in fact a lead Searcher, and that lead Searcher has figured out much more of the poem than anyone else, and they have communicated that to Forrest Fenn, then we have to assume that they do have contact. How much or in what ways is definitely up for discussion, but you can’t have someone contacting him with correct solution information and say that they have no contact. I would argue that Forrest would be extremely curious about this person, and would most… Read more »

Dizzy Dean

Hello Sacha. In the article he said interaction meaning back and forth discussion with Forrest. I would have to agree with that. Forrest would cause himself a lot of issues if this lead searcher was at his house frequently or had many email exchanges. I would not consider contact interaction. One person emailing Forrest and Forrest not responding is different. Forrest would not block the lead searchers emails.


Why do you believe the prospective finder would comment on someone’s YouTube channel?

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