ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (KRQE) – An Albuquerque man is claiming he found where Santa Fe millionaire Forrest Fenn hid $2 million worth of treasure.
Back in 2015, Forrest Fenn told the New Mexico Tourism Department that if he were standing where the treasure chest is, he would see trees, mountains, and other clues.
“He mentioned smells of sage and pine and pinon. To me, you don’t talk about pinon pine if you’re not in New Mexico,” says Rob Kittinger.
For Kittinger, that meant Fenn’s hidden treasure was somewhere in Cimarron. It took him to the Aztec Mill.
“I got there and I immediately found this giant ruin that I didn’t think existed. I didn’t know I was looking for that. I just kind of stumbled across it in the woods,” says Kittinger.
The Santa Fe author claimed in his memoir that he hid $2 million worth of gold and jewels somewhere in the Rockies. Kittinger is sure he found the spot, but he didn’t find the treasure chest.
“I completely believe the treasure was there, that somebody else found it,” he says.
Instead of popping the chest open to collect his riches like he planned to, Kittinger wrote a book about how he interpreted Fenn’s poem that led him to Cimarron.
“I just want to say, look, I solved it. Here’s the solution in this book and it’s not there anymore. So, when you’re hiking just have fun and be safe,” he says.
The treasure hunt has even killed people over the years. Last year, a man also came from out-of-state to break into Fenn’s house looking for it. Others have claimed it’s all a hoax.
For Kittinger, the thrill of finding what he believes is the right spot was all worth his efforts, even if Fenn won’t tell him if he was right.
“His responses are always very brief, usually one or two words. He has never confirmed that I was correct,” he says.
KRQE News 13 called Fenn to ask if Kittinger was right. He says he will not narrow down the search area, and “if Kittinger thought the treasure was there, he could find a way to get to it.” He also did not say if the treasure is still out there.
Kittinger’s book is available for purchase on his website.