Bob’s 2003 Christmas Puzzle Card

Go solve this puzzle interactively
Reindeer Blizzard

Santa and the reindeer are lost in a North Pole blizzard! And to make matters worse, the reindeer were out grazing on the glacier and can’t get back to the workshop. Luckily, Santa had the foresight to set up signposts to mark the path from his workshop to his sleigh. And he equipped the reindeer with reindeer-cams so he could keep track of where they were. Now he can use those to see the signposts and figure out where his path is.

The 99 signposts are laid out on a square grid, numbered 1 through 99, with signpost 1 next to signpost 2, 2 next to 3, and so on (diagonals don’t count). Through a reindeer-cam, Santa can see the four nearest squares to each reindeer. Your goal is to help him figure out where each numbered signpost is so he can hitch up the reindeer and get to his sleigh. As he walks along his path, Santa will come to each reindeer in the correct hitching order (from Dasher to Blitzen).

The locations of the eight reindeer are shown, along with the four numbers on nearby signposts (the gray area). The tricky part is you aren’t told what order the numbers appear in; you’re only told the numbers, not the order.

Using logic, you can figure out which number (from 1 to 99) belongs in each square. It’s up to you. Otherwise, Christmas will be late this year.

Solution (don't look if you don't want to see the solution!)


  1. The goal is to place the numbers 1 through 99 in the squares. Each number will be used once.
  2. The numbers will form a chain. 1 will be next to 2, 2 next to 3, and so on. Diagonals don’t count.
  3. The numbers in the gray areas are given, but not in any specific order.
  4. The smaller example below shows the concept. The numbers 1 thru 25 form a chain. The gray areas include the numbers shown in the ovals.
  5. Even though the gray area only covers about a third of the 99 squares, it s possible to figure out where every number goes.