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Finders keepers: Utah family finds $20K treasure. Here’s where it was

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A treasure chest filled with $20,000 is pictured during in the Best Buy parking lot in South Salt Lake on May 31, 2022.

A treasure chest filled with $20,000 is pictured during a press conference in the Best Buy parking lot in South Salt Lake on Tuesday, May 31, 2022, as John Maxim and David Cline announce plans to hide the money in the Utah wilderness. The chest was located on the Ben Lomond Trail.

Kristin Murphy, Deseret News

The search is over.

A Kaysville couple and a Herriman man gleefully ran down a Ben Lomond Peak Trail in North Ogden, holding a treasure chest containing the $20,000 prize that a pair of real estate investors placed earlier this month, according to a video posted on Instagram by David Cline and John Maxim, the organizers’ of the search.

“We’re still kind of in shock that we found it,” Ira Rice said in the video posted online.

Rice said he saw a trail camera first, which was their sign they were close. A few moments later, he, his wife, Rachelle, and her brother, Micheal Rose, found the treasure filled with cash by a flat rock in the area.

The family said they took a different route to a treasure chest because the main road to the location was closed. Cline said that he and Maxim didn’t know that the road would be closed for a few weeks, leading them to question if people would find it during that time.

“Our goal was (keeping it hidden for) 30 days,” Cline told the family. “We thought that even with the road closure, maybe that will be our way of cheating to get to 30 days. But that didn’t stop you guys.”

This secondary route added an extra mile to the hike, the family noted.

“They literally went the extra mile,” Maxim joked.

The chest was placed along the trail and the two organizers posted a clue on social media on June 3.

Ira Rice explained that he and his family originally set out to find the treasure at the Red Butte Canyon’s Living Room hike in Salt Lake City because of a clue that included “warning,” which he attributed to the color red. The family also thought of a trail in Eagle Mountain before heading into northern Utah based on the set of clues.

But then he and Rose found a trail that looked like a pair of bird heads by Ben Lomond Peak, which they believed could fit the clue “where two birds feed.” They found a few other clues that led them to circle the winning hike on Saturday.

Maxim and Cline said they were impressed because that’s exactly what they meant with the clues they published.

Meanwhile, Rose said he woke up at 4 a.m. to accompany the Rices on the hike.

“A little tired but definitely worth it,” he said, hoisting the treasure chest.

The trio plans to split the money. The Rices said they plan on taking their children on a “fun trip” with their winnings, while Rose said the money will help pay for bills associated with a having newborn child at home.

As for everyone else, you’ll have to wait until next year to find the treasure hidden in the Wasatch Mountains.