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Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Wide beach hunting

I just spent a week up in Central Florida, unfortunately more work than pleasure but I did manage to get  a couple of short beach hunts in.
The beaches in central Florida are much wider than the beaches of south florida that I am used to metal detecting on.
I know many beach hunters would automatically think a large search coil and a brisk detecting pace are the best ways of tackling a wide beach, but I have never been a big fan of speed detecting and trying to cover as much ground as possible.
On a couple of short two hour hunts I relied on my beach reading skills instead of blind luck, especially since I was pushed for time.
Walking out towards the water I got a pretty good look at the most promising looking sites, several low spots or dips in the middle of the beach.
On my first two hour hunt using my Minelab CTX 3030, I recovered one small 18K gold diamond ear ring and a couple of small pieces of silver jewelry, all good targets were found in the lowest areas on the beach. 
I dug many more targets during my second two hour hunt in the lowest area on another beach, but no gold just silver jewelry.
After searching other parts of the second wide beach without any signals, I returned to the lowest area and used a different metal detecting search pattern.
I recovered a few targets I was unable to detect using the first search pattern, this is a technique I often use on productive areas.  
It is always surprising how many targets you can still recover metal detecting over the same area from a different direction.
The CTX 3030 is a very sensitive metal detector and very good at picking up small items of jewelry, such as stud ear rings.
I found several silver ones with CZs, they could just as easily have been gold with diamonds.
Jewelry can be found almost anywhere on a wide beach, but I have found the majority of time the lowest areas on wide beaches are the most productive jewelry spots. 
Going for target separation using a standard size search coil on wide beaches can sometimes be more rewarding than using an extra large search coil for depth. 
The depth advantages of using a large search coil are often negated when a beach hunter is trying to cover a wide beach too quickly. 

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