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Treasure Lake – A Run For The Money

The single engine pontoon plane did not land on the nearby lake. It began to patrol, looking for the two canoes and their one million, six hundred thousand dollars in Krugerrand gold. Rob Snitzer felt they should just stay put until the plane gave up and landed or left. Caroline Rich also thought that was best for the moment. Phyllis Snitzer agreed that it was probably the best thing, but she was not happy about it.

“I just want to get out of this ‘hunted’ thing,” Phyllis said. “It’s wearing me down.”

“We’re all in the same boat – as it were,” Solly Cohen said, “and we should keep positive. Think of all that gold.”

“I don’t think the gold is going to do us any good, financially,” Caroline said. “You could walk into a bank with one Krugerrand, I guess, and get cash for it, but I think walking in with even ten of them would cause an investigation. Walk in with a hundred of them, and it would bring big problems.”

“So what should we do with them?” Rob said.

“Turn them in to the authorities and hope there’s a reward offered,” Caroline said.

“I don’t really trust the authorities,” Solly said.

“What if we divide them up between us, and we each take one every two weeks to different banks or something, and open bank accounts with it,” Phyllis said. “It would be like getting three thousand bucks a month, tax free.”

“That would be, like, four thousand bucks if we had to pay taxes on it,” Caroline said. “To get three thousand clear, we’d need to make four thousand and give one to the government.”

“It sounds like the plane is leaving,” Rob said.

“I think it’s landing, not leaving,” Solly said.

“Whatever it’s doing, it’s not in the air for now, so let’s get going,” Rob said.

The foursome pushed off from under the willow branches and set a steady pace up the small waterway. On one occasion, they came upon a beaver, pulling a small branch to its lodge. An hour later, they came upon a large beaver dam. A small lake had built up behind it.

They didn’t want to do a full portage with loaded canoes for so short a distance. They just had to go around the end of the dam where it’s attached to the shore. Wet grass and mud around the end of the dam would allow for easy sliding of the aluminum bottoms up to the new lake level. On the charts and GPS, there had been no lake there the previous year. The beavers had created it for their own purposes.

It was obvious that the lake was quite deep in places, because the tops of dead mature trees protruded through the surface in several places. Other places, the trees stood in shallow water and the canoeists paddled through and amongst them until the beaver lake opened out into a larger lake that had been there long before.

“What now?” Solly said. “If we go straight across, we’ll be sitting ducks if the plane is around here.”

“What if we hide the chest here somewhere, and return for it another time?” Caroline said.

“That won’t help us get away from these people” Rob said. “Don’t forget we saw them dump the dead guy with the chest. If we go around the edge of the lake, we can hide in the foliage if we have to. The problem is, it will take hours to get to the tributary that will get back to our starting point.”

Several hundred metres from the canoeists, where they paused at the mouth of their tributary, the aircraft rested on its pontoons just out of sight. Its occupants had hunches that the people with their treasure would cross this lake, hoping to gain their freedom from pursuit. If the canoes emerged from cover, the plane would power up and catch them easily.

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