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Arrgh! $20,000 up for grabs in Utah treasure hunt

Posted at 4:58 PM, May 31, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-01 12:05:14-04

SALT LAKE CITY — Those looking to get rich need to channel their inner-pirate this week as $20,000 is set to be found somewhere on the trails of Utah.

The third running of the annual Utah Treasure Hunt will get underway Friday when the organizers release the first clue in the form of a poem.

Real estate investors David Cline and John Maxim are once again organizing the event in hopes of getting more people out and enjoying Utah's great outdoors as they search for the booty.

"We're kids at heart, and so we always kind of thought if we ever have money when we're adults, what would be awesome?" said Cline. "We just wanted a safe way for people to get outside."

The hunt is for all ages, with no rock climbing skills or shovels needed.

"We want everyone to know that you don't have to do anything crazy!" Cline exclaimed.

Cline and Maxim will hide the treasure Wednesday while wearing disguises so they're not recognized. After the main clue is released Friday, weekly clues will follow on Cline and Maxim's Instagram pages.

Up to 6,000 people participated in the first hunt when the treasure was discovered in just four days. Last year, it took 17 days for a group among 20,000 participants to take home the prize.

"We were kind of ready for it to be done because people were going crazy," said Maxim. "We're trying let people pace it out a little bit more this time, but I don't know if they can knowing that this much money is out there."

As far as the prize itself, the duo plans on keeping the treasure at $20,000 for an important reason.

"If it's too much, I think it brings out a lot of crazies and it just gets dangerous. So this keeps if fun," explained Cline.

Both Maxim and Cline agree that seeing a wide range of participants, from high school students to retirees, is what brings smiles to their faces during the hunt. A feature Maxim hopes continues this year.

"All we want is for it to be open to anybody who wants to do it, and be as fair as possible. That's what makes it fun."