Rose Festival OREGONLIVE Treasure Hunt Medallion is Found at the Last Minute!
You can’t make these things up: Dustin White (of Vancouver, Washington) was out hunting for the Rose Festival Treasure Hunt medallion early Saturday morning and managed to leave his car running — with his keys locked inside! Talk about focus on the hunt!
On the last of 14 days of clues, White found the medallion at the Eagle Creek Overlook located in the Columbia River Gorge. Like most of the other 20 treasure hunters searching there, White had been fairly certain the medallion was somewhere at the riverside campground. The clue from the day before read: “Don’t overlook obvious clues.”
While searching Friday Dustin saw a line of boulders and got the impulse to count them, numbers having come up in previous clues. When he counted 15, he wrote the boulders off. They didn’t match anything that had come up in the clues already. Then at 6:00 a.m. Saturday morning when the final clue came through: “Seven rocks to the left and seven rocks to the right. Be the first to look beneath, you’ll celebrate tonight.” White was already just across the highway when the clue was released. (He was luckily in a spot that had good cell reception!) As soon as he saw the clue he drove straight to the boulders he’d been counting the night before.
“I can’t believe I found it,” White said while he was claiming his prize at the Rose Festival offices in downtown Portland Saturday afternoon. “I’m stoked.”
He was so stoked, he said, that he didn’t even mind being trapped outside his locked car for two hours while he waited for roadside assistance to show up. The rest of the hunters who’d come so close to finding the medallion themselves gathered around him when he held it up, and some even stayed and chatted with him until he got back in his car. “Nobody was bitter,” White said. The treasure hunt is all about fun.
White’s winnings include keeping the medallion, along with two roundtrip Alaska Airlines tickets and an overnight stay at Spirit Mountain Casino. Because he found the medallion at the last minute, White missed his chance to sit on a float in the Grand Floral Parade, but he was still riding high well into the afternoon.