Northeast of Hesperia, deep within the Manistee National Forest, is Benton Lake. It is a small lake completely surrounded by wilderness other than a little rustic campground. As legend has it, back in 1874, a stagecoach was transporting gold coins to a nearby logging camp. The coins were to be used for payroll for the lumberjacks, but along the way, the stage was robbed.
The story that has been told for generations is the bandits feared they might be caught and be beaten or killed by the lumberjacks. They hid the gold in an old cast iron stove and then buried it between two stumps along the shoreline of Benton Lake. They supposedly never came back to retrieve the stolen loot. It is claimed that the gold coins would be worth about a half-million dollars. I am not sure if the legend is true, but if you want to look for the buried treasure, you can check out Benton Lake which is part of the National Forrest. I am not sure what the regulations are for digging on national land but in my opinion, the real treasure is the peace and solitude you will find there.
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