Getting money in Red Dead Redemption 2 can be a bit of a faff, especially when it's rather easy to get a bounty on your head across each state, which you're absolutely going to want to pay off before you've got an entire army of bounty hunters on your tail. One way of making some dosh (fairly) quickly is to solve one of the handful of treasure hunts on offer in the game, and one of the most lucrative is the Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Hunt, which will earn you four gold bars worth $500 each. It happens to be one of the secret treasure maps - one which you have to stumble across by happy accident in the game, or have actually purchased the Collector's Box (which came without the game) as a hand-drawn version of all three stages of the map is included in there.
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However, don't fret, it's possible to solve the Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Hunt without spending more real world money on Rockstar's epic, as you can find and solve it in game regardless. Here's how:
Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Hunt
Before you can get anywhere near that glorious gold, you're going to need to find the map. It's hidden up in the northwest of Ambarino, north of Grizzlies West, on the outskirts of Cairn Lake, just southeast of Colter.
To the northeast of Lake Cairn itself is a small log cabin, and inside there you'll find a plethora of goodies, ranging from a cigarette card to the first Poisonous Trail Treasure Map hidden in a lock box under the bed.
Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Map 1
That first map points to an area of Scarlett Meadows, just west of Ringneck Creek in Lemoyne, unsurprisingly called Face Rock. Inventive, right? It features a large, rocky outcrop in the shape of a human face, so it's pretty hard to miss as you're riding by.
Head over here, and then run to the back of the hill the face is protruding from to find the second Poisonous Trail Treasure map hidden in the base of a hollow tree trunk.
Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Map 2
This rather usually shaped location is found over to the east of New Hanover, south of Annesburg and just southwest of Van Horn. It's a mound shaped like a serpent, hence the name Serpent Mound.
But if you head to the hole inside the coil at the top that's filled with stones, inside what we assume is meant to be the body of the snake, you'll find the third, and thankfully final Poisonous Trail Treasure map.
Red Dead Redemption 2 Poisonous Trail Treasure Map 3
To solve the Poisonous Trail Treasure Hunt and nab those four gold bars for yourself, you'll have to delve deep into the cave network behind the waterfall at Elysian Pool. This place is to the northwest of Van Horn, not too far from the Snake Mound.
Head over to the waterfall to the north of the Elysian Pool, and go through the water to discover the cave system behind it. But, here's where things get a bit complicated, because actually you're going to find a secret sub-cave system beyond this cave system in order to find the treasure.
Whip out your lantern, and then head through the cave (pick up a few of those rare bats on the way) until you pass through a triangular narrow corridor.
As soon as you see what you think is a chasm to your right, go against your instinct and head straight on down until you drop down to the lowest level.
Go down a little further along the path and you'll see a small hole to your right. Crouch through it and emerge on the other side.
When you're through, keep right and then left to move up the hill at the fork. Keep going until you reach a point where there's a large chamber and a big, big drop.
Now here's where you'll need to do a bit of acrobatics. Turn to your left and walk along the cliff edge a ways until you see a little platform below you, to your right. You need to run along the edge and jump down here. Fun, right? Well, not really, because if you fudge the landing, you will die.
If you make it, you'll reach a lower level, where there's another chamber. Walk through, drop to the level below where there's some shallow water. Climb up the small level and here, thankfully, this is where the treasure is hiding. Four gold bars, YAY!
Now, there's a tricky part in getting back out of this cliff, but actually it's easiest if you just turn around, walk back up the slope and then just fall into that big, black hole. You'll respawn outside, still with the gold bars clunking in your pocket.
Want more Red Dead Redemption 2 details? Check out our extensive Red Dead Redemption 2 tips.