SALT LAKE CITY (ABC4) — It has been 51 days since the ever-alluding search first began for the 2023 Utah Scavenger Hunt. Today, the announcement was made officially via Instagram — someone has discovered the hidden chest with $25,000 inside.
Treasure-seekers from Utah and beyond have been on an exciting journey across the state to locate the treasure. Using only a secret riddle in the form of a poem to guide them, a wave of hunters have done their best to decipher its real meaning.
Yet, it took a dedicated participant from out of state three separate returns to search until finally finding the treasure. An Iowa woman, Chelsea Gotta (@chelseagotta), nearly gave up before deciding to give it one last shot.
“I went home and said, ‘I’m done’ — and couldn’t let it go . . . So, I just kept researching this week,” Gotta said in an interview with the hunt’s creators Dave and John.
Today, with plenty of determination and little free time left, she’s $25,000 richer.
John Maxim with Utah Treasure Hunt comments on the discovery saying, “It’s an inspiring story… Pretty impressive that she did all that work to get it… The treasure hunt — like we’ve always said — we wanted it to be free and open for everyone, and this just solidifies that anyone can do it.”
According to the Instagram video, the treasure itself was said to be located up Mueller Park, in southeastern Bountiful. A video was shared afterward that breaks down each section of the poem and how they correspond with the clues.
There is no word, as of yet, when another edition of the Utah Treasure Hunt will launch. Though, fans of the hunt can find information on future adventures via the website.
“Kind of sad that it’s over,” remarks Dave Cline with Utah Treasure Hunt. “But [we’re] excited for the winner and we just hope that everyone who participated had fun.”
Now, with treasure in hand, what’s next for the winner?
“I have to go home tonight, to go to work tomorrow,” Gotta told Dave and John.