The Best Places for Metal Detecting
Why You Should Use a Metal Detector
Whether you are new to metal detecting or have simply lost interest due to a lack of success, I've brought together some places where you may not have considered using your metal detector.
I can't guarantee you'll find a treasure chest bursting with Spanish doubloons and rubies as big as saucers but who knows!
We all dream of finding a treasure of forgotten gold jewelry or coins but don't dismiss other smaller finds, these can be equally as interesting but perhaps not as valuable. Whether your interest is coins, artifacts, or jewelry any discovery, I'm sure you'll agree, is a welcome one.
Gerber Folding Shovels
I love my Gerber shovel. I was given this as a present from someone who uses theirs when camping. Knowing that I was into detecting, they knew it would be ideal to fit into my bag.
I began with a garden trowel, which was a waste of time, let me tell you. Sand would fall back into the hole faster than I could remove it.
All my gear, my detector, headphones, Gerber shovel, and extra batteries fit into my carrying bag. That way, I am not wasting time going back and forth to the car.
Detect for Metal on a Crowded Beach
Have you ever dropped a coin in the sand? I know I have and guess what, so have lots of other people and it is nigh on impossible to find it without a metal detector. It's almost as though the sand has swallowed it up, claiming it as payment for the using the beach.
Not only for lost coins but also jewelry. These could be things that were put into a bag which was knocked over or simply came off when the owner was wearing it. Imagine someone throwing a beach ball and their ring flying off, it is lost waiting for you to find it. Likewise, when people go into the cold water, loose rings can slide off because of the change of temperature.
The best time to go searching is as soon as the crowd has left for the day, as it is likely other metal detectors will be out scouting as well. Don't be put off by them, get your headphones on and start scanning.
Often in front of a kiosk which was selling drinks, snacks and ice cream is an ideal place to start. As people are opening and closing purses or rummaging in pockets, coins fall out and get lost.
After a storm is also an excellent time to go detecting at the beach. This will have disturbed items which had been lodged possibly underwater and are now thrust into an area within your detecting zone. The advantage of doing this is there will be fewer people out metal detecting.
If your detector is one which can be used underwater or in shallow water, schedule your visit for low tide. Items from the beach side often get lodged near rocks as the tide goes out.
If you are detecting in or near the water, always play it safe. Know your tide tables and don't get caught in an incoming tide.
Just as the rocks are good for trapping items from the beach, the opposite side is excellent for anything brought in on the tide. Working around rocks is a little trickier but it can be a bountiful area to detect in. Watch out for crabs which like to hide in areas near these rocks.
Detect for Metal Under Seats and Benches
What happens if you're wearing pants or shorts and you sit down? Sometimes coins fall out of your pockets. If you doubt this, go look in your sofa.
Under benches is a great place to look for coins. But remember, don't just look where there are "new benches" go and find old benches or even a place where benches used to be and have been removed. This is the place you will find older coins.
People also have rested against trees, had picnics on the grass look for these types of places as well.
Metal Detecting in Deserted Towns
Do you know of a deserted town? There are disused areas dotted around the country. Perhaps where businesses have closed down and the population left the town without because there was no source of work. Old mining towns for example. Here would be a good place. Not only would you find old coins but other items of a bygone era.
Speak to Older People
Your grandparents are a wealth of information on where people use to congregate, where they sat for picnics and buildings that are no longer there. They will love telling you stories of how life used to be. Remember you have to be a bit of a detective to decide where to metal detect!
As one reader suggested, coins fell out under washing lines. Pants were hung upside down and the coins would have fallen out unnoticed.
Metal Detecting Near Trees
Think about how trees are used. They are used not only for climbing but also people use to lean up against them to rest. Here again, things could have fallen out of their pockets or bags and lodged themselves in the roots. If this was covered with grass, it is possible the owner would never have found it or even noticed it was missing until later in the day.
Kids often were climbing trees, hanging upside down. Articles or even coins could have dropped out.
Going even further back, when people were riding through the countryside on horses and needed to hide something of value, often near the base of a tree was a good place for them to remember its location. For whatever reason, they may not have returned to collect it. Remember to think about times gone by, where were the old passageways? Look for old trees or mounds where stumps have been and rotted away.
Besides coins, tree roots hold gold. Many years ago in northern California, gold was unearthed after a heavy rainstorm. It had been trapped in tree roots. Gold is where you find it, as they say, and this time it was in under a tree.
Another good place to detect is near gates. As people climb over them, articles could have fallen out of their pockets or they could have used this as a marker to return to just like at the base of a tree.
Detect at Crossroads
Old crossroads are a good place to look for treasure. Years ago when people were traveling on foot or horseback they may have needed to leave behind things. Perhaps they were saving them from being stolen or perhaps they didn't want the extra weight. For whatever reason, they would have needed a point of reference to return to. This was often where two roads met. A crossroad.
Of course the crossroads of today may not be the same as they were hundreds of years ago. This is where you have to become a bit of a detective again. By using old maps you can discover the roads of yesteryear. To find old maps of your area, start at the library in their local history section.
Farmland Can Hide Treasure
Ask a farmer if you can detect on his land between plantings. If you offer him a 50-50 share of the finds, he would probably be more than pleased. When covering such a vast area, it is a good idea to use a grid pattern when covering the ground. You don't want to be scanning an area twice or missing any areas that could unearth a find.
- BBC News - Devon treasure hunter discovers 22,000 Roman coins
A treasure hunter from Devon has discovered the biggest hoard of 4th century Roman coins recorded in Britain.
History and Metal Detecting
Above is a drawing of Newstead Abbey in Nottinghamshire, England. Near this abbey are underground passages that run outside the abbey grounds. Located within a close proximity was found one of the richest finds in England called the Fishpool hoard.
Know your history and local area.
The Dangers of Metal Detecting
If you are searching in an overgrown area, be it under trees, benches or any scrub land, watch for spiders, snakes, and even scorpions. Using a metal detector first, may scare away snakes but not the spiders or scorpions.
It is a good idea to have gauntlet style gloves in your bag to wear for this type of location and also a stout pair of boots.
Gauntlet Gardening Gloves
These will easily fit into your detector bag and could save you from a painful bite or sting. You don't need them to use your metal detector but in long overgrown grass and brambles, you'll be glad you've got them. Scratches, stings, and bites can keep you from enjoying your day, don't let that happen to you.
Although not a potential problem in America, it does happen in Europe. Remnants of WWII, when bombers were depositing their payloads over England and most of Europe. These unstable bombs could explode if disturbed. If you do find one, contact the police and give its location.
Don't try to dig it out!
The area will be cordoned off and the bomb will either be removed or detonated in a controlled explosion.
© 2011 Mary Wickison