Dr. George Hill Hodel- Zodiac Maps, Radians & Riddles- Breaking the Mt. Diablo Code


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Breaking the Mt. Diablo Code

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In the above diagram, I have inserted and am using Zodiac’s original hand drawn compass circle and cross. I have followed his precise instructions and have positioned his circle to point to Magnetic North.  (Tilting Zodiac’s circle approximately 17° east) Zodiac tells us this will reveal where the bomb is buried.  Note that Zodiac himself, moving in a counterclockwise direction from the apex has drawn five small X marks on his circle spacing them approximately 30° apart from each other.

I have extended his marks by drawing a black line A outward in a northwesterly direction and line B downward in a southwesterly direction.

Magnetic north to Line A is approximately 60° and Line A to Line B is also approximately 60°. (“Radian – Noun.  Mathematics. The measure of a central angle subtending an arc equal in length to the radius:  57.2958°”)  Zodiac’s specific use of the term radian informs us he is familiar with higher mathematics and is referencing an angle approximating 60°.  (SKH Note- Zodiac does not specifically state these distances are radians, he merely say’s, “The Mt. Diablo map concerns Radians and # inches along the radians.”

By following his instructions, does Zodiac reveal where a bomb is buried?

Yes, I believe he does. 

Note that by extending a line (A) out from Zodiac’s own positioning of his 2nd “X” not only does it approximate an angle of 60 degrees, but it appears to mark the location of Zodiac’s Blue Rock Springs murder site. Line B, Zodiac’s 4th X, completes his second angle, also approximating 60 degrees and when extended goes directly through his Presidio Heights, Paul Stine shooting location. But, where is the buried bomb?

 As originally presented in my sequel, MOST EVIL, I believe it is also revealed on Line B. 

This line not only intersects with his Stine victim, but crosses directly through the exact location where the body of Elizabeth “Black Dahlia” Short is buried in Oakland’s, Mountain View Cemetery. 

Based on my investigation in BDA and confirmed by Head DDA Steve Kay and many of LAPD’s top law enforcement we now know that Dr. George Hodel was the 1947 Black Dahlia Avenger.  We know he himself chose the name, “Black Dahlia Avenger” and sent more than a dozen taunting hand-printed notes to the press and police, promising there will be more victims.  Top Southern California law enforcement officers past and present are in agreement that George Hodel slew Elizabeth Short. 

 I believe that this fact along with the angles connecting to the separate crime-scene locations is the decoding of Zodiac’s, “Mt. Diablo Map Secret” As promised by Zodiac, this has told us where the bomb is buried. It was no literal bomb, but a figurative one. A bombshell!  Figure it out and you will have discovered his secret.  Black Dahlia Avenger and Zodiac are the same man.

 In cold-blooded premeditation Zodiac/Avenger has picked innocent victims that either happen to be “in line” with his coordinates on the map (Ferrin/Mageau, Blue Rock Springs) or has deliberately moved them to the position(cabdriver, Paul Stine, Presidio Heights, “Take me to Washington & Maple”), moving them at will as pawns on his chess board.  Zodiac has preselected the time, conditions and place. All remained at his WILL.  

He did it before in 1945-1950 as the AVENGER placing bodies at specific locations, with specific street names, one of which included the actual name of his victim, “DEGNAN” and then mailed notes to taunt the police, “catch me if you can.”

 Two decades later he repeated his crime signatures with only minor modifications. This time he moved his LIVING VICTIMS about the board at his will and once he had them in position he brutally slew them for his purpose- which was identical to that in 1947 Los Angeles- to mock both police and press and – CONTROL & TERRORIZE A CITY.   

GEORGE HODEL- The Mathematician

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As a teenager, George Hodel’s stated early goal was “to become a chemical engineer.” Above are his actual course assignments and transcripts accredited from high-school and the California Institute of Technology.

 George Hodel- The Navigator

Dr. George Hodel’s original Breitling, NaviTimer watch gifted to me in 1997



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 Photo from a Breitling NaviTimer early instruction manual

In 1997, just two-years before his death, my father gave me a gift. It was an item that he had long cherished- and one that is traditionally handed down from father to son. It was his watch. But, this was no ordinary watch, this one was special. He had owned and worn it for more than forty years.

It was a Breitling, NaviTimer, equipped with a navigational computer, that allowed military pilots (and those few civilians, with the mental know how) to actually manually calculate the speed of their aircraft. (The Swiss manufactured, Breitling Navitimer, was first released in 1954. When father informed me that the mathematical computations could be made “in flight with nothing more than the watch in hand”, my response was, “Well, maybe with your brain, but not mine!” This elicited no response from him, just a smile.)

This Breitling NaviTimer watch is the same watch that my father would have been wearing in 1968-1969.

Did he use its navigational features and functions and its circular slide rule to calculate and map out his victims future positions and angles as they related to Mt Diablo? Very possible. As we have seen, he certainly possessed the mathematical skill and knowledge to perform the calculations.

For those of you who are mathematically inclined and curious, here is a link to the Breitling NaviTimer Instructions Manual, thanks to Chuck Maddox and Bill Sohne. The Breitling NaviTimer appears to do everything but wash dishes.


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I was going to leave this discussion for another blog, but because it is so intrinsic to the material at hand, I will present it here as a closing thought.


Researchers for forty-years have presented numerous and varied theories attempting to define the meaning of Zodiac’s Cross & Circle. Without going into any details some of them include:


He used it because it is the symbol of the Zodiac Watch Company, which has used the same symbol for more than a century.  Others are convinced Zodiac is using it to represent the crosshairs of a rifle scope.  Still others ascribe its meaning as: the sign of LIFE, Astrology, Druidism, Satanism, Asian, and or Native American symbolism etc.


In my sequel, MOST EVIL I examine a number of different possibilities and theories as to what might have been Zodiac’s SOURCE and inspiration for his Cross & Circle?   


Because of my father’s early and close connections to and doctoring of Native Americans, on the Navaho reservation in and near New Mexico and Arizona, my favorite possibility included the cross and circle as found in the Navaho Dream Catcher and Medicine Wheels, something father would have seen worn around the necks of his patients on a daily basis. (In 1937 GHH was good friends with Navaho Chief Tom Dodge.)


But, in reflection, and based on what I now believe to be an accurate deciphering of the riddle of Zodiac’s Mt. Diablo Map,  as explained in my book and briefly summarized in the previous paragraphs, it is my conviction that there are not many complex answers to what the symbol represents, but rather there is  JUST ONE.  


The heretofore enigmatic symbol now deciphered and applied to his instructions reveals itself to be- Zodiac’s directional compass literally pointing  us to not only HOW and WHERE to find his victim’s bodies, but also to-WHO KILLED THEM.


Zodiac promised that if we could “crack the code” we would learn his identity. He knew if we figured out the victim relationships we could connect- Zodiac to Black Dahlia Avenger.  But, even if 1969 law enforcement did make the connection (they never did) he was confident he was still safe and in control.


After all, the Black Dahlia Avenger was only his alter ego and shadow identity – a part of his distant past and as such remained long forgotten and unsolvable.  

George Hodel went to his death with absolute certainty that both as Avenger and Zodiac he was “crack proof.”


 George Hodel- His Final Taunt

(Excerpted from Most Evil – pages 252-254)


INTRI-San Francisco

In 1989, at age eighty-two, Dr. George Hodel decided that he needed a change. Most people would have kicked back and retired after a demanding life filled with exotic travel and eighteen hour work days.

Ever the entrepreneur, my father chose to relocate and work full time in San Francisco. So, in 1990, George and June, then living in Hong Kong, packed their bags and moved to a thirty-eighth floor condominium on Bush Street, in the heart of the downtown financial district.


After securing his business license and designing his logo, my father mailed me the particulars. He’d named his new company INTRI- International Travel Research Institute. Home office: 333 Bush Street West, Suite 3808, San Francisco, California. 


No stretch of the imagination is needed here. This time the megalomaniacal Dr. George Hodel had placed the Zodiac logo resting on top of the world.

I came across these logos in July 2005, as I was looking for samples of my father’s handwriting. …When I’d first seen them …they had no meaning. Only after I was deeply  immersed in the Degnan/Zodiac investigations and my father’s pathological need to conceal clues as purloined signatures was I able to comprehend another of his inside jokes.


SKH Note-  Since making this logo discovery in 2005, now everytime I see dad’s logo I cannot help but be reminded of the famous final scene in the classic 1949 film noir, WHITE HEAT, where James Cagney plays the psychotic gangster, Cody Jarrett who just before going up in smoke yells out his own megalomaniacal line,  “MADE IT MA. TOP OF THE WORLD.”  Click below to see it.


White Heat final scene.


Just like Cody Jarrett, I can almost hear my father’s “soft sly voice”, whispering to himself as he puts the final touches on his San Francisco business logo – “MADE IT, TOP OF THE WORLD.”



























  1. Elizabeth Mendia on November 7, 2015 at 11:51 am

    Hi Steve – You’ve probably seen this… but from another website dealing with the radian theory they say this:


    – Liz
    PS – Perhaps the bomb was Elizabeth Short herself, which would have to be “dug up” before fall. What a further humiliating spectacle that would have been…

    • Steve Hodel on November 7, 2015 at 12:19 pm

      Elizabeth M: Yes, in MOST EVIL I make the suggestion that the “buried bomb” is Elizabeth Short’s grave site and his reference was figurative rather than literal. The buried bomb would be a “bombshell discovery.”

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