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Saturday, April 12, 2014

A New Look at the Sugar Loaf Gold


The following story is taken from a story book tale that was first published as I recall in about 2002. Again the use of story book tale is not meant to diminish the story or author; it is only to say it has been a published story. I have said I am not in the habit of chasing after story book tales however occasionally one will come to my attention that just stands out and some thing within the story pulls at me and after careful examination and study, I seem to find a clue within the story that it would seem no one has considered based on all the conversation and opinions I have read pertaining to the story. Again many of you will recognize this story, but of those many only a few have heard my thoughts as to the true location of the Sugar Loaf Peak.


The Sugar Loaf Peak

I had read the story some time in about 2002 but had long since put it behind me until about May of 2007 when a friend of mine called me who is very familiar with my perspective on things and my study habits and my ability to read between the lines, according to him, and he asked if I had ever read the story. I told him that I had but it had been some time and I asked him why? He told me he had just read the story and he had a gut feeling that I needed to read the story again and so I did.

Reading the story again and getting familiar with it all over, I noticed many things I had not noticed before. Immediately I saw a grave mistake in the understanding of what had been said by those who supposed they knew where it was. I realized that so many get caught up in the story that their imagination will stretch to fit just about any location, however one has to remain with both feet on the earth and realize, that the story as received may not be the exact story that occurred. Details have a tendency to change based on the perspective of those who have passed the story along. It is important to hang on every word and apply simple reasoning and common sense. Figuratively speaking, you have to step into the shoes of all who have been involved, and then you can litterally follow their footsteps.

Now I am only going to give a summery of the original story here.  It was about 1827 when the great grandfather of a man named Jonny, was trapping in the Rocky Mountains with a trapping party. A friend of mine who is very proficient in his research abilities, found documentation and registration of this trapping party along with the names of those who registered to go on this expedition, a common practice in those days. This information is a first step for me if possible to first establish if the story may be true.

Jonny’s G Grandfather with two other men separated from the others of the party to look for new beaver trapping areas. The 3 men went south as the document states to a specific area near what is now known as Utah Lake. Ambiguous details of further travel is given as they arrive to a point where they met some Indians who weren't happy about them being there and started shooting arrows at them, one of the arrows lodged in the back of one of the 3 men who were on horse back. Although it is unknown as to whether the Indians were on horse back, it is likely they were not, because if they were, they would have no doubt ran down the trappers loaded with their supplies and likely killed them. My position on this is that the Indians were likely returning to their camp from a hunting trip when they noticed the white men. It would have been clear to them that they were not Spaniards, but I am sure the Indians in this area had taken all they could of the white man, with the slave labor, taking of children etc. It would be my position they never even perused them. There was no mention of a pursuit but I would suspect the trappers thought they were being perused.

Non the less… the three men beat feet out of there and rode up a small canyon and found a rather large badger hole as evidenced by the badger they seen come out of it, they ducked into the hole dragging their wounded friend in and slapping the horses on the back side, and remained in the hole for some time hoping they had not been seen.

Night approached and it was getting very cold and so they built a small fire to comfort their wounded friend. The trappers remained in their hole for days before they dared leave. While in the cave, one of them made a torch from a juniper branch and it was clear the hole they were in was not a badger den but apparently an old mine tunnel or cavern, one of the trappers decided to explore a bit. Not far from where he left his friends he found piles of bricks which proved to be gold ingots. Hurrying back to his friends excited with the news he motioned his unwounded friend to come with him, after showing him the fortunate find they discussed at length what they should do. It was decided all they could do given their circumstances was to return at a latter date.

Returning to their wounded friend they found he had died of his wound. The two trappers not having anything to write with recalled together, things that they could remember coming to the badger hole so as to be able to find it again, they knew it would be some time before they could write down the details. Before leaving the tunnel they made a make shift grave for their friend piling gold ingots over his body to keep the animals from ravaging him. After several days, they decided to leave at night and made their way back to their camp some 90 miles north. Jonny’s G Grandfather at his earliest opportunity wrote the details about the location. What happened to the other trapper is unknown. One of the key landmarks in the story was a certain Sugarloaf Peak at the base of the mountain, another was the red ledges.


 the Red Ledges

Jonny’s G Great Grandfather apparently never made it back; he made his way to old Mexico and got married and stayed until he died. The details written by him and a map eventually made its way to his G Great Grandson Jonny.

It is believed that in about 1913 is when Jonny showed up in Springville Utah from old Mexico and once the story got around, a few individuals had their own ideas as to where the sugar loaf was and immediately tried to convince Jonny that their location was the correct one stretching the details given to fit their own location, apparently they heard what they wanted to hear. But if you pay attention to the details giving them credibility and taking them at face value, it is quite clear as to the path the trappers took if you understand the motives of the trappers in trapping beaver. The end location is some 25 miles and bares every detail without any stretch of the imagination. If you know the story feel free to seek out all that transpired when Jonny showed up and those he communicated with, I personally have disregarded the majority as I can see plainly their eagerness to make the story fit their agenda.

My friend who originally talked me into taking the story into consideration was not surprised in the slightest at my findings. I took him on the same path that I knew the trappers had taken and showed him every detail and clue. He was certain that I had nailed it. Since this time we have investigated the site and contacted the land owner. On one trip at a time when I was not up to the hike I sent a good friend to the area to look for the final clue being a badger like hole, as luck would have it, he returned and I promptly asked him if he saw a badger hole, he replied with, “Yes, several” go figure…

It would seem to me further investigation is in order to find one large enough for a man to crawl into, and who knows, perhaps there is evidence of a mine dump of ancient origins. I have my reasons to believe that the ingots are not of Spanish origins but of a people much earlier who at one time were predominant in the area. In every story you might come into possession of regardless of how you got it, you have to read it slowly putting yourself in the shoes of the author, and all those who may have had part in passing the story along. What remains at this site is unknown and has not been returned to since my friend went to the area to look for badger holes, this was in about 2010. So close and yet… so far, where is that neon sign? Where Jonny disappeared to is unknown, we don’t even know if that was his real name.

Conclusion...

This site is about 1/2 hour from the Provo area, to get to the access from above is just minutes from the I-15 freeway exit... I have a working relationship with the land owner, anyone who goes to the site is expected to sign a release of liability. The owner is a kind and hard working man, and at times, he would even like to tag along, I am telling you this because no one is working the site at this time. It is a matter of finding the right badger hole, not just A badger hole but one large enough for a man to crawl in. I am looking for the right individuals to work this project, it has been idle for near 1 year.

If you are interested, contact me and we can discuss it, once you have reviewed the details and you come to realize that those of the past have misunderstood, then we can proceed and you have free reign. I have neither the resources nor the ambition required to persue at this time, my efforts and focus are elsewhere and where I believe it should be at this time. If you need a good project to persue, and you can demonstrate your dedication, ambition and persistance to undergo a viable and verifalble project, contact me. I can't just give projects to anyone who raises their hand wanting a good story, it takes time, money dedication. so think it through before you contact me. It is not my objective to discourage you, however I will try to save you, time, money and frustration. ;-)

I PROMISE NOTHING... If you can't hack the time, money and effort it takes then walk away, I am telling you this as It would seem I have lost a few friends whom I guess expected me to hand it to them... I hope I am wrong... 

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