To Find Real Treasure - Sometimes You Have to Get Off The Beaten Path
Every treasure hunter, whether young or old, can gain access to the easy to reach places. Every park in the world, although constantly seeded with newer coins and possibly jewelry, has be pounded by every other metal detectorist. Every overpass with easy access to water and every bridge on a hiking trail has been hammered by the weekend prospector. To find the really interesting and valuable targets, you may need to venture outside your comfort zone.
The first step to gaining access to these properties, and one that will require you get out of your comfort zone, is talking to property owners. Some detectorists may hesitate asking permission because they feel uncomfortable in doing so. In most cases, however, the property owner is as curious as to what may be on their property as you are. Often, just striking up a conversation with people and letting them know about your hobby, interest in history, or desire to just get out side and off the couch it enough to open the door to gaining access to a new metal detecting hunting ground.
Perhaps the landowner is hesitant because they think there may be something on their property of value and are concerned on what happens if you do find something. An easy way of addressing that is to have a Search and Salvage Agreement with you. This shows them that you are a seasoned recovery specialist that is prepared to share the value of anything you might find.
The next step is to be ready to get off the beaten path. When you do gain permission to metal detect a property, you need to get out and get in the thick of things. Many times we will walk miles, swinging the metal detector the whole time, just to find the foundation of an old dwelling. If possible, we will drive to get there, but often times it means a hike. Briar patches, mosquitoes, ticks, mud, and rough terrain are just a small part of what you may encounter. Depending on where you are, you could possibly encounter much more daunting threats. Skunks, porcupines, and possibly even bear (depending on where you are hunting) can be encountered when out rustling around in the brush. If you are getting deep into the wilderness, it is not a bad idea to carry a firearm with you - standard practice for me.
Below is a video of us sniffing around some old dwellings that took us quite a bit of time to find:
Although going places where others may not want to go may seem like a lot of work, it is exactly what you may need to do to find the treasure others are not willing to search for. This is what separates the pros from the amateurs.
- Josh Turpin