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Triangle Peg Board Puzzle

Updated on January 10, 2013

Triangle Peg Game

Forget video games! Sit down with a triangle peg game and try to puzzle it out. The puzzle board consists of a triangle with fifteen holes and fourteen pegs. The object is to remove the pegs by jumping one peg over another peg into an empty hole until you are left with only one peg. You can only jump over one peg into an adjacent hole that is set in a straight line.

The game is also often called peg solitaire or less commonly Solo Noble. Makers of the game often replace the pegs with marbles. If you don't have any luck, head back here and take a look at a solution.

The solution given below covers the easiest board shape: the triangle. Once you've mastered the triangle you can go on to master the other forms like the diamond, French, English or German styles.

(intro photo by author)

Simple Triangle Peg Game Solution

In order to discuss a solution, we'll need a common language to describe the board and peg positions. With one of the triangle points facing up, we will number the holes in order from the top row with a single hole to the bottom row with five holes. The first row hole is #1. The second row has holes #2 and #3 and so forth until the last row which has holes #11 through #15. The pattern looks as follows (I show leading zeros and dashes to keep the format looking nice):


------02 03

----04 05 06

--07 08 09 10

11 12 13 14 15

To start the game the board looks as follows (with a filled circle indicating a peg and an open circle indicating a hole):

We first create a diamond at the top with the following moves: 4-1, 6-4, 1-6. We end up with the board looking as such:

The next set of moves are 7-2, 13-4, 2-7. Now the board should look like the little diamond with a channel of three holes on its side:

We are getting close now. The moves 10-8, 7-9, 11-13 leads us to a little v shape laying on it's side:

14-12, 6-13 and we are oh so close we can almost taste it:

12-14 and finally 15-13! Solved!

Of course there are many other solutions as well as starting positions but I leave those to you so you can still have some fun and say you were able to solve it on your own.

A Brief Peg Solitaire History

A french engraving from 1697 showing the Princess of Soubise with a peg solitaire board next to her is the first reliable evidence that the game existed. Such an engraving also meant that the game was already popular by the time of Louis XIV.

Herbert M. Smith of Rome, New York was issued patent 462,170 in 1891 which involved a peg solitaire game similar to the triangle peg game but the board looked like three merged triangles. In 1892, Charles H. Rickert of Reading, Pennsylvania was issued patent 484,882 which concerned a peg solitaire game in the form of a star.

The Cracker Barrel restaurant has for many years featured this puzzle as a distraction for customers while they wait for their food. You might ask what does "eg-no-ra-moose" mean on the game? You'd be an ignoramus and purdy dumb not to figure it out.

Are You a Genius?

Were you able to solve the triangular peg puzzle on your own?

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More Difficult Solution

To make the game even harder, you can opt to try to place the final peg into the original starting hole.

Peg Games on Amazon

Peg Game
Peg Game

This is the classic triangle peg game using golf tees as pegs.

Channel Craft Classic Challenging Handcrafted Wooden Puzzle Original IQ Tester Deluxe Edition
Channel Craft Classic Challenging Handcrafted Wooden Puzzle Original IQ Tester Deluxe Edition

Has the rules printed on the front. Though the board isn't triangular, the layout is. Nicely made with a cup to hold the pegs.

IQ Tester, Baseball
IQ Tester, Baseball

If you have a baseball fan in the house, this version of the triangle peg game has a baseball theme.

1 X Wooden Triangle I.Q. Test Solitaire Peg Game by Unknown
1 X Wooden Triangle I.Q. Test Solitaire Peg Game by Unknown

The classic triangle peg game makes a great party favor for schools, birthday parties and more.

EXP Handmade Peg Jumping Solitaire Travel Game (Thailand)
EXP Handmade Peg Jumping Solitaire Travel Game (Thailand)

For those of you who have mastered the triangle peg game and wish to have a new more complex challenge.


Peg Solitaire Apps!

I'm sure some people carry around a peg solitaire board wherever they go but most people carry around a smart phone, so use an app to play the game!

Where did you first encounter the triangle peg game? Did you ever prove yourself smarter than a sibling by solving it when they couldn't? Don't be a pointy head, leave a comment!

Triangular Peg Game Commentary

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    • profile image

      anonymous 5 years ago

      looks interesting, like to play

    • yayas profile image

      yayas 6 years ago

      I can't remember the first time I ever saw the Triangular Peg Game. I've only been able to solve the puzzles a couple 'uh times, but I always enjoy trying, even still. Very interesting page.

    • Richard-H profile image

      Richard 6 years ago from Surrey, United Kingdom

      I picked up several of these at Cracker Barrel. Took me a little while, but eventually got it solved :)

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 6 years ago from United States

      One of my all time favorite games! I always grab one at the Cracker Barrel :) I usually end up with a split :( Think I will take this cheat sheet with me the next time.

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Fun! I recall playing this game at my Grandmother's home.

    • bead at home mom profile image

      Teri Hansen 6 years ago

      Fun lens. I have featured this page on my page about 'Cracker Barrel' Thanks. You've been blessed.

    • QuinnWolf LM profile image

      QuinnWolf LM 6 years ago

      Nice lens. I actually wrote the Android phone app for this game. Although Cracker Barrel claims they are the originator of this puzzle board, truth is I first discovered it at gold clubs and Howard Johnsons back in the 70's.