Do you ever get to feeling down with the change of the seasons, particularly during summer break? I sometimes do. I’ve talked to others who have felt the same way, so I wanted to share with you how I have been beating the summer blues by hunting for buried treasure!
When I was younger, I wasn’t a big fan of summer vacation.
Going to classes each day of the school year provided me with a sense of routine and predictability. Once the excitement of signing yearbooks on last day of school had settled, I would realize what was coming. Two months of loneliness, isolation, lack of routine and purpose. I wasn’t a very outgoing or social kid, so I already struggled with loneliness in school. But being around NO ONE all summer made it even more lonely. My only companions those summers were the cast of “The Office” as I re-watched the entire series over and over.
Even now as an adult, I can’t help but start to feel depressed once summer starts. I think I have unknowingly conditioned myself to feel this way. So this summer, I tried changing up my routine to beat those summer blues with the help of my husband, Chase.
Chase and I recently started doing local competitions, looking buried treasure.
Basically, people all across the state compete to find the hidden treasure chest first. Somewhere in the state of Utah and about a foot underground, there is a buried treasure chest filled with money. And the only way to find it is by solving a series of clues. Each competition is done differently – they might share clues through social media like Utah Treasure Hunt, or have a whole app dedicated to the event like Treasure Finders. And they often have an online community of people trying to solve the clues, asking their peers for feedback on their solves.
We have spent many hours working on solving the clues, looking at maps, and scouring online forums.
During the week, we do our best to stay focused on what work we need to get done. That way we can use the evenings and weekends to treasure hunt. If we’ve got an inkling of where it could be hidden, we’ll pack up our hiking gear and head out to search for buried treasure. We’ve hiking all over the state of Utah to see if we can find any treasure… and we have the sunburns and new calf muscles to prove it!
So far, we’ve come home sunburned and empty-handed, but usually with big smiles on our faces.
A few weeks ago, we found ourselves sitting at the top of Mount Baldy, a summit with an elevation of 12,090 feet. Our legs and backs hurt from the steep, rocky incline. We needed to use our inhalers because the air was thinner than we were used to. And we were absolutely EXHAUSTED when we got back to the base of the summit. I can’t imagine that we would have tried that hike if it hadn’t been for us thinking there was treasure up there. But despite the challenge it took to get up there, I am so glad we took that hike. At the top of the summit, you could see the entire city of Salt Lake and the views of the tree-covered mountains were breathtaking.
Sure, it would be AWESOME to find tons of money buried in the woods.
But more than anything, I’ve been enjoying the thrill of trying to solve riddles and the adventure of tracking down something hidden in the woods. I get to spend time with Chase without the distractions of work or tv or anything else. And I get to feel like I am accomplishing something new and out of the usual rhythm I tend to follow. Beating my summer blues by hunting for buried treasure has really become one our favorite pastimes!
The distraction of hunting for buried treasure has helped me not get tied down by my usual summer blues.
Working on the treasure hunts long-term does get a little exhausting though. Hiking all the time starts to wear us down physically (we aren’t really in that great of shape, honestly), and the constant brain work is a little exhausting at times. But by the time I’ve gotten burned out on being productive, someone has found the treasure anyway!
If you are looking for something to do this summer, maybe check out and see if there is a local competition for hunting for buried treasure! Who knows – not only could you beat the summer blues… but maybe you could come out with some winnings too!
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