When and Where Warm Waters Halt in Forrest Fenn’s Treasure Poem


Hello and welcome to A Gypsy’s Kiss, the
vlog. I’m Shelley Carney and I’m Toby Younis. Stick with us a few seconds and I
will tell you when warm waters halted. Where. What? Where. No, when. What? When warm-waters halted. So what’s that
about? Well, it is about when warm waters halted. Mmm-hmm. Not where warm waters halt. Okay. Where warm waters halt, if you don’t know, is in the poem. This is not in the
poem. In the poem? In the Poem. The challenge is, as I’ve always said, is to
understand the treasure, you have to understand the poem. To understand the
poem, you have to understand the man. So let’s go back to April of 2013. Okay.
To this recently rediscovered, maybe even discovered, interview with Forrest Fenn
conducted by gentlemen whose name is Jessie Mulligan who works for Radio New
Zealand. I’m not going to play the entire fourteen minutes worth of interview. I’m
going to play the section that starts at around nine minutes and we’re going to
listen to that. Okay? Okay. I’m assuming, I’m not trying to prize information out of you, but I’m assuming that if a guy, an unemployed guy in a pickup truck, is
driving across from Texas to have a look, you don’t necessarily need local
knowledge. Local geography knowledge. No. Okay. The first clue in the poem is
begin it where warm waters halt. That’s the first clue. If you don’t– if you can’t
figure that clue out you don’t have anything. If you’d like to hear the
entire interview, that is available on A Gypsy’s Kiss, the YouTube channel. It is, yeah. I’ve got the entire interview there. He does say a couple of other
interesting things, but what Forrest said unequivocally in that interview, which
made it interesting to find after all these years, is that the first clue in
the poem is begin it where warm waters halt. Thank you for doing all that closed
captioning, by the way. Well. In case you guys haven’t noticed Shelley did closed
captioning on the most recent of our videos and it’s really a smart move for
us. So it was unequivocal. I don’t know how
you could argue that when he says it. Now, what was interesting to me is, not only
did he say it, which is an indication of “well, what do we do with all the rest of
the poem?” It kind of fits in with our sandwich theory of last week where we
talked about the important parts of the poem in terms of the treasure, are
stanzas two, three and four, and that one, five and six are basically the
last will and testament of Forrest Fenn. So I think it substantiates us from that
perspective. But it makes it clear that the first clue is begin it where warm
waters halt. So that’s very important and Forrest has said again and again if you can
figure out where warm waters halt then you can find the treasure. That’s right,
and I think he recently said that if you get to the first two clues you’re
halfway to the treasure. Right. Which is kind of an interesting way to put that.
So there has been a lot of discussion that, you know, unending
conversation, on the forums about exactly where– whether or not begin it where
warm waters halt is the first clue. I don’t see how anybody could question
that at this point. But then after that, there’s this even more convoluted
conversation about what exactly warm waters are and you’ll hear a variety of
explanations, if you will. The most often used is warm waters are hot springs. Lots
of hot springs here in New Mexico, lots in Colorado, lots and Wyoming, some in
Montana. Ojo Caliente here in New Mexico being
the most obvious, but it doesn’t fit the the area.
My theory early on was the State game fishing regulations where the New Mexico
State regulations make a distinction between warm waters, not warm-water fish, but warm waters and trout waters. They use the term, the phrase,
warm waters in the plural. The geysers of Yellowstone. Old Faithful dumps in
eventually dumps into the Firehole River. The Firehole River eventually dumps into
the Madison, so that was a possibility. The confluence of spring-fed versus
glacier-fed streams and rivers. The stream-fed being slightly
warmer, the glacier-fed being slightly cooler. But the difference is not that
great. It isn’t dozens of degrees it’s five or ten degrees, you know. Then
we’ve also heard the where steam train water towers was one suggestion
that was made. So there’s lots of variations on that warm waters theme.
It’s always a challenge to pick one that works for you. We had one here in New
Mexico that honestly still works for a lot of our solutions here in New Mexico.
So let’s go back and talk a little bit about what Fenn was doing in that period
between 1988, the period we call the ‘quiet period.’ Right, we talked about that
in our timeline episode. Right. Between 1988 and 2003. So there was a lot of
things going on in his life from the perspective of learning. So first of
all, he acquires the Fenn cache of Clovis points. I don’t remember the whole
story. All I know is it came out of Sweetwater
County, Wyoming. That’s where they were discovered,
but somehow or the other the cache was offered to him and he accepted them. So
at the same time, that same year in 1988, he acquired San Lazaro and he began the
excavation there. As a result of finding the Clovis point cache, he met or
introduced himself to a professor at the University of Wyoming named George
Frison, who was an expert in these matters. They apparently, I don’t want to
call– I don’t want to say, without, you know, without the caveats, that they
became good friends, but it was obvious– they wrote a book about their adventures
tracking down where these Clovis points came from. As a matter of fact, in
some statements within the past couple of years, said Fenn would love
find a point buried in the in the head of a mastodon. Well, it was Frison that
introduced him to the areas in which they were, the University of Wyoming, was
excavating mastodons along the Bighorn range. Much lower, by the way, than our
5,000 feet minimum. So he was spending a lot of time with experts in the field.
Kind of, you know, this might have been his Indiana Jones period. What he was
doing during that period of time, whether it was the acquisition
of the Clovis point cache, the excavation– the acquisition and excavation of a San
Lazaro, spending time with field experts in the field, was he was doing paleo
geological and Paleo anthropological explorations. I don’t know if you can say
he became an expert, but he came– certainly became knowledgeable enough to write an inch-and-a-half thick, if not two inches, book on San Lazaro. You can’t
do that without acquiring a lot of knowledge. Sure, and this goes to
show you that this is what he was very focused on during those years, especially
the 90s, during the time that he was writing the poem. Putting the poem
together for 15 years, he was studying paleo geology and paleo anthropology, as
you said. So anybody who’s written anything, fiction or nonfiction, you know
that whatever it is that you’re into or excited about at that point in time of
your life, is what you’re going to be writing about. And you’re going to
incorporate that into whatever your thinking is and I think a lot of that
occurred. Now, we’re going to get some pushback where people say, you know, Fenn has said on a number of occasions all you need is the poem and a good map. Well, the first thing that you’re going to learn is that if you don’t have an
understanding, a basic understanding of topology, for example, the poem and a good map is not going to do you any good because there is no X marked on that map.
Remember it took him 15 years to write it, so there’s nothing simple about
this poem. It is not as simple as grabbing the poem, a good map and going
looking for the treasure. Tens of thousands of people have tried that, we see them on TV sometimes. We certainly see them on a lot of YouTube videos. None
of them have come back with the treasure. Right. So, let’s talk about the options
for warm waters halt. When warm waters halted. The reason I want to do it
from that perspective is because what Fenn was doing during this period of time–
during this period, was learning about time. He probably started when he was
young and he started picking up those arrowheads with his father. Two hundred years, maybe 300 years old. The ones at San Lazaro, a thousand years old. The
Clovis points, ten to fourteen thousand years. A mastodon, a little bit older than
that. Then suddenly you’re in one of the basins in Wyoming and you have a
professor saying, oh by the way, this period here, this era here, this Basin
here, dates back a hundred million years. That’s all put into context. So what
Fenn was learning about in those 15 years, more than anything else, was about
how– he was learning about time. Then he was probably putting his life,
his 80 or even maybe a hundred years, in the context of hundreds of millions of
years. I think that concept, the concept of time, is written into the poem
and that’s why I say when warm waters halted. Okay, so let’s talk about that.
When did warm waters halt? Well, let me give you an example of what it looks like
first. This is a map of North America, actually not all of North America
because we’ve left off some of Mexico down here. But if you look very carefully
at a map of North America, you’re going to see a lot of different things. You’re
going to see that Rocky Mountain range that he’s always referring to You’re
going to see where the glaciers stopped, which is why Minnesota has 10,000 lakes
and Montana doesn’t. Because you can see, you can actually see, that line
where the glaciers finished their– completed their intrusion and started
receding. Then you’re going to see this little space
right in here that spreads out right there and goes through Texas and created
what we mostly know as central– the central part of America– the central
plains. That area is the result of another paleo geologic activity. That
activity is called the Western Interior Seaway. The Western Interior Seaway
covered a significant part of North America from about a hundred and
twenty-five million years ago to about 81 million years ago. That means it
covered up the surface of the center of North America for about 45 million years.
It left, when you’re there for 45 million years, it left quite a mark. It
left its mark there. Now, what I’ve done is– this is actually– the Western Interior
Seaway actually extended over two thousand miles from the Arctic Ocean all
the way down to the Gulf of Mexico. At one point, all of Texas was under the
Seaway. All of Colorado was under the Seaway. This represents the end of that
period where there was a lot of sea life, where some of the big, you know,
ocean-going dinosaurs, bigger than Tyrannosaurus Rex, as the size of
brontosaurus, lived in that Seaway and we found evidence of their
existence. But what I’ve done is I’ve blown up this little area. There’s two
things that I want you to note. I’m not going to focus on Montana today, and the
reason it is during that period the only part of Montana that was covered by the
Seaway is the very northern part that borders Canada. I’m not going to
cover New Mexico because the only part of the Seaway that had intruded into
New Mexico is in that northwestern corner and that’s not actually in our
search area. So I’ve blown it up a little bit and you can see–and I’m sorry,
I apologize, for the resolution I had to do a crop on that image that we saw–you can see
here in Wyoming where it came about. This is what we now know is the
Green River. This right here, this little extension here, is the Wind River Range. My microphone just dropped, let me fix that. Fell asleep. Yeah, sleepy. Then
there’s this intrusion into the western Rocky Mountains in Colorado so we’re
going to take a look at those. What I’ve done is taken a look at the
perspective from the basins that were created and paleo geologists, and
actually, people that are looking for oil and gas, especially shale oil, refer to
these basins. So, here’s the Wind River Range. Just north and east of that is the
Wind River Basin. Just south and west of that is the Green River Basin. Down
here is the Washaki Basin, which is the one that intrudes into Colorado. Then
right here is the Saratoga Valley and that’s interesting to me because it’s
very unique in the grand scheme of things. So what I did, is I made a map,
I went to G Map 4, and I pulled out a map of the area, and I hope you guys can
see this. If not this is all on G Map 4. This is Wyoming. This is Colorado. The
state line is right there. But you’ll see, here’s the Wind River Range, here’s
the Wind River Basin, the Green River Basin, the Washaki Basin, and the Saratoga. So you can see– and then of course
the– in the grand scheme of things, the Western Seaway went east
from there. The Western Interior Seaway went east from there. It was at one point, at
its greatest point, it was six hundred miles wide, two thousand miles long and
up to 2500 feet deep, so it was a serious Seaway. If you take and you turn
that– so this is a topographic version– it becomes more obvious when you look at a
satellite version of it. I mean, you can see the areas, how they change as a
result of the fact there’s no growth, you know, this is basically bottom land
for all intents and purposes. It may be at 2500 or 3000 or maybe even 4,000 feet,
but in comparison to these ranges that stopped the Seaway, it’s bottom land. You can see again Wind River Range, Wind River Basin, Green River Basin
Washaki Basin and (I am just never going to remember) Saratoga, right. Then the
Front Range in Colorado. So what it would look like if you add water to the
algorithm, that’s what it would look like if the if the Western Interior Sea was
still here. Now I understand that it was a warm water, tropical sea? Yeah, it was. It
basically was a tropical sea. It was the same temperatures as the seas that we
find in the Caribbean or the Gulf of Mexico, etc etc. So it was definitely warm
waters. Warm waters then halted at the place where these mountain ranges kept
it from getting any higher because these mountain ranges had developed as a
result of both tectonic action and, you know, the results of what was happening
beneath the earth at that point in time. So, if I was looking for treasure, and the
first location that I needed to look for was where warm waters halt, then I would
start looking along the lines here, followed by the existence of canyons. In order for those canyons to be there there would have to be, of course, a
mountain or mountain ranges. So the warm waters halt where the Western Interior
Sea was 81 million years ago. So you can actually see on a topographic version of a
map, and I just pulled this up from G Map 4, the erosion that would be
created by a seashore and how it enters into– how it results in a canyon. Now
this would be a mountain range that would have stopped the seashore
right there. So you can almost pinpoint at the top of this canyon exactly where
the warm waters halted. Okay, so the next clue in line is take it in the canyon down.
So if you’re already at sea level, because that’s where warm waters halted,
was at the shoreline, which would be at that point, sea level, how are you going
canyon down from sea level? That’s where it gets ‘Fenny.’ So the first thing is, and this is in the case of the Wind River Range, the
first thing is we can assume that this Basin here, this is a kind of a slice
through the Wind River Range, this Basin here represents where the ocean was. This would represent where the seashore was. You’re right.
The mountain stopped it there, for the seashore can only go someplace. If you’re
going to take canyons you’re going to go canyons up. But if those canyons are the
result of a thrust, of tectonic thrusts, it pushes the ground in a way that moves
the most recent eras to the top. Here’s what it looks like. You’ll see right here,
this is one of those u-shaped glacial canyons. One side of the canyon has
actually been thrust up and then eroded by glaciers. This is the era that’s
closest to us. This is the era that’s farthest away. So although you’re going
up the canyon in terms of altitude, you are going down the canyon in terms of
time. You’re going from the most recent epoch to, in this case, about a hundred
million years ago. You’re going down in time and what you’re going to find there
are shale deposits. Those shale deposits at the bottom of, these right
here, you’re going to find shale deposits and you’re going to find on those shale
deposits you’re going to find marine fossils. Samples of marine fossils. So you
are, although you’re going up the canyon in altitude, you’re going down the canyon
in time. Okay, and what have we here? This is just kind of an example of what it
would look like. This is actually a western Wyoming shale deposit. The reason I thought it was interesting is because these lines right here
represent oil shale. There are actually, you know, people digging through
these epochs to get to the oil shale in order to extract brown petroleum. So if
you saw one of these, you might find yourself looking up at the home of
brown. So you would be below it, the home of brown. Exactly.
So, recommendations. Number one: warm waters halt in at least Wyoming and
Colorado, at the shoreline of what was once the Western Interior Seaway. It
is very visible on both topographic and satellite imagery of those areas. You’ll
see Montana, south of the Canadian border, very slightly. The western half of
Wyoming. North Central Colorado. The bad news is that I’m going to have to
exclude New Mexico. Because although New Mexico was covered significantly by
the Western Interior Sea between 145 and around 80 million years ago as it
receded, it was two things: number one it came around the northwestern corner and
it intruded south of Albuquerque. So none of it is in the search area. None
of where the Western Interior Seaway seashore is, was in the search area in
New Mexico. So wa-wa-waaa, sorry New Mexico. I don’t know what we’re going to do with New Mexico. We’re gonna have to move to Wyoming, I
guess. There’s a thought. Look for shale deposits containing
marine fossils, there’s a good chance that you’ve found where warm waters
halted, in a westerly direction of that. Take it in the canyon down may
require a geological trip through time. If there’s anyone that likes the
idea of traveling through time, in the past and in the future, it’s Forrest Fenn.
Right, he says how would it be – how exciting would it be to have some sort
of impact on somebody a hundred years or a thousand years from now. Exactly.
So, he’s been impacted by those arrowheads, the Clovis points, all the
things that he found at San Lazaro, and he, I think, wants to do that as well. Fifteen
years worth of study, effectively at the collegiate level. His curiosity enabled him to educate himself in a way that he probably never imagined, and
with the time and money that he could afford it.
Maybe the inspiration of, you know, being diagnosed with cancer and
recognizing that you’re not going to be here forever. Mmm-hmm.
I think death, and the spectre of death, has that effect on a lot of
people. That you begin to look at your life and how can I make my mark? What
can I do, you know. If he also always felt that he was lacking in education, then
what better to do than spend his time, you know, educating himself. Exactly. That’s what he did and I think that education is embedded in what he wrote
into the poem in that same 15 years. Okay. So there you have it folks! That’s when
warm waters halted and you should be able to figure out from that where warm
waters halt. So, thank you so much for watching. I’m Shelley Carney with A
Gypsys Kiss the vlog. I’m Toby Younis. Thanks for watching this
week, we look forward to seeing you next. Bye.

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