Metal Detecting on the Outer Banks (Maps, Laws and MORE)

Metal Detecting on the Outer Banks (Maps, Laws and MORE)

When we take a family vacation to the Outer Banks, our favorite restaurant is pirate-themed. We converse with pirate mannequins as we wait for our table and eat in pirate hats. Of course pirates and treasure go hand in hand. North Carolina beaches are known for interesting things washing up and exposing themselves. Of course Metal Detecting is a planned activity in our household, a trip to the beach would be incomplete without getting our detectors out and swing for treasure.

During the heyday of American piracy and rumrunning, the Outer Banks (OBX) was equal parts treacherous and profitable for anyone who braved the hazardous offshore shoals. Naturally, this leads us to a favorite vacation activity: treasure hunting!

Where to Metal Detect on the Outer Banks
Where to Metal Detect on the Outer Banks

While your chances of unearthing the shipwrecked booty of a lost pirate ship are slim, your chances of salvaging coins, watches, jewelry and other more-recently “buried” treasure are fairly good if you go metal detecting at the Outer Banks. So, bring your metal detector, your sunscreen and some useful information about the laws and locations for metal detecting, and you’ll be sure to have a great time.

Can You Metal Detect on the Outer Banks?

In general, metal detecting is allowed at the public beaches on the Outer Banks. However, detectorists will need to plan their scanning excursions around some specific regulations and locations where metal detecting is allowed.

Metal detecting is allowed on the beaches north of Nag’s Head. This includes: Carova, Corolla, Duck, Kill Devil Hills, Kitty Hawk, Southern Shores and some of Nag’s Head.

Metal detecting is prohibited within Cape Hatteras National Seashore. These prohibited beaches include Avon, Buxton, Frisco, Hatteras, Ocracoke, Rodanthe, Salvo and Waves. Additionally, metal detecting is prohibited in all North Carolina State Parks, which include the beach at Jockey Ridge State Park.


Where to Metal Detect on the Outer Banks?

With pale, silky, sand and tranquil sea grasses, dramatic dunes and moody clouds, you can’t go wrong metal detecting anywhere on the Outer Banks. The scenery alone will make any excursion worthwhile, whether or not you unearth any treasure.

Based on the assumption that most of us are unlikely to discover a Spanish galleon or Colonial silverware (neither of which would we be allowed to keep anyway), the treasures we’re detecting for are more mundane and more modern things like coins, keys, jewelry and the like. Given that, the best places for metal detecting at OBX (like any beach) are the high-traffic areas where visitors easily drop objects that they’re either unaware of losing or unable to find in the sand.

One popular spot is Carova Beach Park and Boat Ramp.

Many Regional Public Beach access, like Kitty Hawk’s are also good prospects.


Do You Need a Permit to Metal Detect the Outer Banks?

The good news about metal detecting in North Carolina is that no permit is required as long as you’re at one of the OBX beaches (listed above) where metal detecting is allowed, saving you the time and effort of a permitting process.

The only exception to this is in state parks. You’ll recall, metal detecting is prohibited in State Parks. However, if you lose a personal item in a state park, you can apply for a permit to use your metal detector to search for your lost property. Be advised, you’ll be accompanied by a park employee while you search.

Metal detecting is also allowed on private property in North Carolina without a permit provided you have permission from the property owner.

Laws and Rules for Metal Detecting the Outer Banks, NC

Even at beaches where metal detecting is permitted, there may be certain guidelines to follow. Most recreation areas prohibit the use of metal detectors during June, July and August when crowding on the beaches is intense. (Both the crowds and the heat make this an unpleasant time for metal detecting, anyway, so you’re not missing out on anything.)

General beach guidelines request that all beach users – whether metal detectorists or families building sand castles – fill in any holes they dig in the sand. So, if your scanner leads you to start digging, fill in the hole once you’re done. Additional rules governing beach usage also apply, such as prohibitions on glass containers and alcohol (except for beer) and driving on the beach.

Should you be lucky enough to find an artifact from a real shipwreck or other item of historical value, there are additional regulations to be aware of. The laws that could affect you during your metal detecting at the Outer Banks are the Archaeological Resources Preservation Act (ARPA) and the National Historic Preservation Act. Essentially, anything you find that appears to be a historical artifact needs to be reported, not pocketed – or risk a $5,000.00 fine. Additionally, if the object you discover appears to be over 100 years old, you’re supposed to leave it where it is and report it. This allows professionals to remove it, avoiding damage to fragile objects with potential historic significance.

For more information about North Carolina metal detecting laws, visit https://deq.nc.gov/about/divisions/environmental-assistance-customer-service/a-z-topic-index/metal-detectors.

Metal Detecting Clubs and Stores in North Carolina

If you’re new to metal detecting, there are many online forums and chat boards where you can ask your own questions and dig for information specific to the Outer Banks. There are also local metal detecting clubs where you can get insider tips from experts. Some clubs in North Carolina include:

If you need to purchase metal detecting equipment, you better bring it with you or stop on the way because there are no metal detector stores at the Outer Banks. The closest stores are:


David-Humhries-Author-Metal-Detecting-Tips-1


David Humphries
, Writer and Creator of METAL DETECTING TIPS. After borrowing my son’s detector and finding $.25. I felt like a treasure hunter. FREE MONEY! I was seriously bitten by the metal detecting bug.

15 Best Places to Metal Detect in Michigan (Maps, Laws, Clubs, and More)

15 Best Places to Metal Detect in Michigan (Maps, Laws, Clubs, and More)

In my opinion Michigan is the best state in the whole country for metal detecting. I admit I have lived in Michigan my entire life, but I promise I’m not entirely biased. Michigan borders four of the five great lakes and has some of the largest publicly owned forests in the country! In addition to the nearly endless beaches and forest where one could metal detect, in Michigan you never know what you’re going to get. You can get anything from treasures left behind by lumber operations and copper mines to artifacts from Native American cultures who once inhabited the land. My favorite vacations have been traveling across the state to metal detect on the beaches of the great lakes.

I could go on and on about the many places that I’ve been metal detecting in Michigan, but for the purposes of this list I have distilled them down into just 15 locations of which I believe to be the best places to metal detect in Michigan.

1. Grand Haven State Park (Lighthouse Beach)

Given that Michigan borders 4 out of the 5 great lakes, it is no surprise that it has plenty of lighthouses. However, not all of Michigan’s lighthouses are open to the public, and not all of them have metal detector friendly policies. That is what makes Grand Haven State Park special. The park is located on the west side of Michigan’s lower peninsula at the opening of the Grand River on the coast of Lake Michigan. It is a 48-acre park which, besides its lighthouse, is made up completely of beach sand.

Metal Detecting Grand Haven State Park
Metal Detecting Grand Haven State Park

Grand Haven State Park also happens to be one of the 5 total state parks in Michigan that allow metal detecting on all portions of the park as long as it is conducted in a way that doesn’t damage the resources of violate any state laws. This is great for detectorists because the entire park is essentially a giant beach. Moreover, because there is a lighthouse the park is especially popular. This means that there is tons of foot-traffic and it’s all on the sand! It’s basically a perfect place to go looking for jewelry, coins, and other dropped treasures.

Where to Metal Detect at Grand Haven State Park


2. Huron-Manistee National Forests (Buried Treasure)  

Technically two separate national forests, the Huron and Manistee national forests are both located in the upper portion of the lower peninsula of Michigan and were combined for administrative purposes. Together they comprise 978,906-acres of land which is filled with thousands of lakes, and miles of rivers and streams. Portions of this land were former sites of logging camps and early settlers, now abandoned and overgrown with new forest. Furthermore, a section of the Manistee portion of the national forest is known as Nordhouse Dunes Wilderness. It is one of the few dune ecosystems that is nationally owned and therefore open to metal detector use.

Apart from the sheer size and uniqueness of these national forests, both of which are huge positives for detectorists, the forest also may hold a long forgotten buried treasure. That’s right, deep in the woods of the Huron portion of the national forest there may be half a million in buried gold coins. All of the stories of the treasure differ somewhat, however the most popular of them state that a payment of gold coins was in route to a lumber camp when the train was held up by robbers. According to the legend the robbers buried the gold in an iron stove somewhere on the shoreline of Benton Lake. The treasure has never been found and might still be out their waiting for some lucky detectorist to find it.

Where to Metal Detect in the Huron-Manistee Forest


3. Warren Dunes State Park (Tons of Foot-Traffic)

The Warren Dunes State Park is a series of huge sand dunes located near the most southwest portion of Michigan, bordering Lake Michigan. The park has a total of 1,952-acres of land and is one of the five most popular camping destinations in the state of Michigan. This is a pretty big achievement as camping is a highly popular recreational state, most of it done in the more northern portions of the state. The Warren Dunes are such a popular attraction that the park has over a million visitors every year. That’s a million people who come and potentially drop jewelry, coins, and any number of other things in the clean sand.

However, unlike some state parks in Michigan, metal detecting is not allowed in the entire park. The portions of the park which are open to metal detecting can be found, thanks to the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, on the printable map linked below.

Warren Dunes Metal Detecting
Where to Metal Detect at Warren Dunes, MI

Map of areas open to metal detecting: http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/warrendunes.PDF

Where to Metal Detect in Warren Dunes State Park


4. Antrim Creek Natural Area (Ghost Town)

Unlike the other locations on this list, the Antrim Creek Natural Area is not managed by national or state governments. Instead it is maintained by the Grand Traverse Regional Land Conservancy through the officials of Antrim county. However, it is very comparable to a state park in that it is comprised of 156-acres of land and even boasts an entire mile of shoreline on Lake Michigan. In fact, the area was originally designated as a port town given its proximity to the lake.

However, Old Antrim was a poor location for a port as the waters were shallow and only small watercraft could actually dock along the waterside. This didn’t stop a town from developing briefly, although eventually all of the residents eventually moved. All that is left are some foundations and small signs of previous habitation.

This would be a great place to metal detect as you might find some relics from the mid 1800’s. The land is open to hunting and pretty much all other forms of recreation, and the regulations listed on their website (which is linked below) don’t mention metal detecting.

Learn the Regulations for Antrim Creek Natural Area: https://www.gtrlc.org/recreation-events/property-rules-hunting-regulations/

Where to Metal Detect in Antrim Creek Natural Area


5. Ludington State Park (Ship Wreak Beach)

Home to the Big Sable Point Lighthouse, the Ludington State Park would seem to be an unlikely place for shipwrecks, however more than one have been found in recent years either within the bounds of the park or very near to them. Apart from that, the park also has pretty much everything that can make a state park great.

The park is situated in between Hamlin Lake and Lake Michigan, plus a mile of the Big Sable River runs through the park. But the impressive natural features don’t end there. The park has several miles of shoreline and even sand dunes bordered by marshlands and forests. All of this put together makes the Ludington State Park a big tourist destination with tons of foot-traffic every year.

Ship wreaks, although uncommon, can be found here as well as many other locations along the north-western portions of Michigan’s shoreline due to the rapid changes between very deep and very shallow waters. Ludington State park has plenty of other great attributes which makes it a perfect place to go metal detecting, but the possibility of finding relic from a centuries old ship wreak washed ashore is definitely a plus.

Areas of the park open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, linked below.

Where to Metal Detect at Ludington State Park

Ludington Atate Park is popular with ch scanners, but make sure your sweeping the right places. Fortunately the State of Michigan has a downloadable map. Find it Here – http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/ludington.PDF


6. Hiawatha National Forest (Nearly 1 Million Acres of Searchable Land in the Upper Peninsula!!!)

The upper peninsula of Michigan is well known as one of the most naturally beautiful places in the entire world. Anywhere in the upper peninsula would be a great place to go metal detecting, but the Hiawatha National Forest is an especially great place due to its enormous size and unique geological features. The forest is 894,836-acres of land with over 100-miles of shoreline. The forest borders both Lake Michigan and Lake Superior with some portions on the eastside even bordering Lake Huron. Some portions are still used today for commercial lumber projects, however many now abandoned logging operations were conducted before the land was designated a national forest.

The extensive shorelines, abandoned logging operations, beautiful forests, and previous inhabitants of Native Americans all make the Hiawatha National Forest an amazing place to go looking for long forgotten relics. However, as I mentioned some portions are used for commercial operations and others are used by the forest service itself for things such as museums. Because of this, not all of the land is open to metal detecting. I recommend in general trying to stay away from areas where it looks like human activity is present.


7. Muskegon State Park (Two Miles of Beach on Lake Michigan)

The former site of the Ryerson Hill & Company lumber mill, the Muskegon State Park is a 1,233-acre plot of land situated on the eastern coast of Lake Michigan. The park has two miles of beachfront, although it also has sand dunes, hiking trails, and an Olympic-designated winter sports complex. This makes it a highly popular destination for both visitors and locals. It is the stereotypical great metal detecting beach with tons of foot-traffic and beautiful views.

Where to Metal Detect at Muskegon State Park

Areas of the Muskegon State Park open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources – http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/muskegon.PDF


8. Traverse City State Park (One of Michigan’s most popular Resort Towns)

Officially known as the Keith J. Charters Traverse City State Park, the park is 47-acres of land located on the southern shoreline of the East Grand Traverse Bay (a bay of Lake Michigan). The Traverse City State Park is one of the few state parks in Michigan that allow metal detecting on all portions of the park, both on the beach and in the campgrounds. It is also a highly popular camping destination as it is located in one of Michigan’s most visited resort towns. This of course means tons of foot-traffic, something that detectorists are always looking for.


9. Petoskey State Park (Home of the Michigan State Stone the Petoskey Stone)

The Petoskey State Park occupies land which was owned by William Wirt Rice and his tannery which he founded in the late 1800’s. Today, however, much of the 303-acre park is comprised of heavily vegetated sand dunes and a beach on the shores of Little Traverse Bay (a bay of Lake Michigan). The Petoskey stone, Michigan’s state stone, can be found on the parks beach, which makes this area a huge tourist destination. Tons of foot-traffic of visitors from all around the country come to this beach every year. Plus, in additional to their lost treasures, you might even find a few Petoskey stones!

Areas of the park open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, linked below.

Map of areas open to metal detecting:http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/petoskey.PDF


10. Porcupine Mountains Wilderness State Park (Largest State Park in Michigan)

Only the beaches of Union Bay (a bay of Lake Superior) are open to metal detecting in this immense 60,000-acre state park, however its other spectacular attractions bring plenty of foot-traffic to this beach every year. The park is home to the most extensive stand of old growth northern hardwood in North America, the Lake of Clouds, and even an abandoned copper mining town. Moreover, the park is filled with breathtaking waterfalls and views from the higher portions of the mountain. This is definitely a location which is good both because of the metal detecting opportunities and the other recreational activities that can be had in the area

Where to Metal Detect in the Porcupine Mountains Wilderness

Areas of the Porkies open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources – http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/porkies.PDF


11. Lakeport State Park. (Former United Auto Workers Retreat)

Lakeport State Park is one of the few places on this list that is located on the shores of Lake Huron. Because of its close proximity to the city of Detroit, the southern unit of the Lakeport State Park was formerly the location of the United Auto Workers Retreat. Today, it is one of the best places to go metal detecting on the east side of Michigan as it is one of the few state parks which allow metal detecting on all portions of the park. Whether you’re looking for treasures left in the mid twentieth century by auto workers, or just some jewelry left behind by the parks many visitors, the Lakeport State Park is a great destination for detectorists.


12. Mears State Park (Camp on the Beaches of Lake Michigan)

Formerly owned by the lumber baron Charles Mears, and officially known as the Charles Mears State Park, the Mears State Park is a 50-acre plot of land on the north side of the channel that connects Lake Michigan and Pentwater Lake. It is also one of the few places where you can actually camp on the shores of the great lake. It is a great metal detecting vacation location as metal detecting is allowed on all portions of the park, and the opportunity to camp with a view of a great lake is unbeatable in the state of Michigan. You are most likely to find coins, jewelry, and other things left behind by the parks many visitors. But you might just find a relic left behind from the days when it was inhabited by a lumber baron!


13. Brimley State Park (One of the Oldest State Parks in the Upper Peninsula)

Due to Brimley State Park being one of the oldest state parks in the upper peninsula of Michigan, it offers the special opportunity to search for objects left behind by visitors from all the way back to 1923 when the park was founded. It is 151-acres of land on the shores of Whitefish Bay (a bay of Lake Superior) and is particularly interesting to detectorist as metal detecting is allowed on all portions of the park. It isn’t as heavily trafficked as some of the other locations on this list, and so might be better for those who enjoy a private treasure hunting adventure.


14. Baraga State Park (Copper Nuggets)

The upper peninsula of Michigan, particularly the western areas, is known for having some of the largest deposits of naturally occurring copper in the world. Unfortunately, it can be difficult to find public land that is open to metal detecting in this area. However, the Baraga State Park is one of these locations. While you are more likely to find coins or jewelry, it is possible that you could unearth a copper nugget. I recommend trying to find private land, or other such areas, in this area as copper deposits that are multiple tons in size have been found. It is always important to get the proper permissions for this kind of detecting, however.

Areas of the park open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, linked below.

Map of Areas Open to Metal Detecting in Baraga State Park

You can download directly from the State Baraga State Park here – http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/baraga.PDF


15. Rifle River Recreation Area (Big Fisherman’s Retreat)

Only some small portions of this state park are open to metal detecting, but luckily the best location is the canoe launch which is designated as being open. The Rifle River Recreation Area is a 4,449-acre plot of land with upper portions of the popular Rifle River running through it. It is a very popular location for fisherman from every state in the Midwest, and therefore the canoe launch is one of the best locations to go metal detecting in Michigan.

Areas of the park open to metal detecting can be found on the printable map, courtesy of the Michigan Department of Natural Resources, linked below.

Map of Areas Open to Metal Detecting in the Rifle River Recreation Area

You can download directly from the State of Michigan here – http://www.michigandnr.com/publications/pdfs/RecreationCamping/metal-maps/rifleriver.PDF


Metal Detecting Laws in Michigan

Michigan Metal Detecting Clubs

Favorite Metal Detecting Shops in Michigan

Tips for Metal Detecting in Michigan

  1. Consider getting a coil cover if you metal detect on rocky beaches.  Damaging a coil is expensive and an inexpensive cover will help your coil last.
  2. Consider using a waterproof metal detector so that you can detect in the many rivers and streams that Michigan has to offer. You might even find something in one of the great lakes!
  3. Always bring a sand scoop to the beaches and dunes of the great lakes. It’s saved me a ton of time on my metal detecting trips.
  4. If you go metal detecting in one of the National Forests make sure you don’t stray too far from the paths. It can be very easy to get lost in a million acres of woodland.

Looking to LEARN more about Metal Detecting?

Metal Detecting Tips is filled with great articles about HOW to Metal Detect.


David Humphries, Writer and Creator of METAL DETECTING TIPS. After borrowing my son’s detector and finding $.25. I felt like a treasure hunter. FREE MONEY! I was seriously bitten by the metal detecting bug.

15 Best Places to Metal Detect in Ohio (Maps, Laws, Clubs and More)

15 Best Places to Metal Detect in Ohio (Maps, Laws, Clubs and More)

Ohio was the first state that I went metal detecting in, besides my home state of Michigan, and it’s not just because the two share a border. While I will always favor Michigan over Ohio, there is no denying that Ohio has some of the best public areas for detectorists. From the extensive beaches of Lake Erie to some of the most detectorist friendly city park systems in the nation; There is more recreation to be had in the buckeye state than just the roller coasters at Cedar Point.

Finding Money Metal Detecting
Finding $$ Metal Detecting

In terms of history, Ohio was originally inhabited by Native American tribes and over time also American and French fur trappers. Once officially part of the union, farmers and homesteaders moved in as well. This means that if you are a relic hunter you can expect to be searching for Native American artifacts, early English artifacts, and even artifacts from early American settlers. Not to mention the various lost/buried treasures which are suspected to be in various locations across the state.

With all of my experiences in Ohio through the years I’ve put together a list of what I believe to be the best 15 places to metal detect in Ohio…


1. Headlands Beach at Headlands Beach State Park – For Metal Detecting

Headlands Beach is a beautiful 120-acre state park that has all of the recreational activities one would expect from a state park, but it has one special natural attraction that makes it particularly attractive to detectorists. Headlands beach is the longest natural beach in the state of Ohio. It is a mile-long natural sand beach on the shores of Lake Erie surrounded by even larger and more majestic sand dunes.

These attractions combined bring in up to two million picnickers and swimmers every year. It is often ranked as Ohio’s best beach and is certainly its most popular. To all of you who like to look for coins and jewelry that visitors have left behind, the Headlands Beach is the place for you.


2. Geneva State Park Beach – Scanning Beaches

Geneva State Park Beach is another amazing beach located on the shore of Lake Erie. Although, the entire park is around seven times larger than the Headlands Beach State Park coming in at nearly 700-acres of land. The beach may not be as long, however visitors praise it as having some of the cleanest and whitest sand of any beach along the lake. Hundreds of thousands of visitors visit the park every year.

Beach metal detecting requires the right digging tools. Don’t get stuck using a shovel that broke in the middle of a hunt like me read about the correct digging tools in this article – Selecting the Best Digging Tools for Metal Detecting.

The land that the park is sitting on was originally inhabited by Native Americans, and before becoming a state park was also once part of the state’s extensive canal system for the shipping of goods to Ohio’s many rural farms. While metal detecting is usually reserved only for the sand areas of state parks (see metal detecting laws in Ohio below) there is also some talk on the forums of the park allowing detecting elsewhere in the past.


Metal Detecting on a beach has a couple TRICKS you’ve got to use. Luckily I’ve summarized my tactics in this article. How to Metal Detect: The Complete Beginners Guide


3. Kelley’s Island State Park Beach – Isolated Treasures

Kelley’s Island State Park Beach is one of the most unique locations on this list because, as the name suggests, it is located on an Island in the Lake Erie Island system. Located on the northern shores of Kelley’s Island, known locally as Lake Erie’s Emerald Isle, this is a 677-acre state park renowned for its unique location and size (It takes up almost 1/5th of the entire landmass).

While a unique location for vacationers, the isolation aspect of the island does mean that it doesn’t get nearly as much foot traffic as some of the other places on this list. To get to the island one has to take one of the frequent daily ferries which service everything from RV’s to bicycles.


4. Alum Creek Beach at Alum Creek State Park – Massive Potential for Metal Detecting

Although it differs from the previous four places on this list by being the first inland beach, Alum Creek State Park is still one of the most historically significant state parks in all of Ohio. Alum Creek State Park is a massive 4,630-acre park located just north of the state capitol of Columbus and has evidence of Native American settlements dating back over 2,000 years.

Furthermore, as Ohio shared a border with a former slave state of Kentucky the land that is now Alum Creek was once vital to the freeing of slaves along the Underground Railroad. More recently, the Alum Creek Dam was constructed as a flood control plan for the Ohio River basin and was completed in 1974 creating the Alum Creek Lake. Along the shores of this lake is the longest inland beach in the state of Ohio coming in at 3,000-ft long.


5. Wayne National Forest – For History Buffs

The Wayne National Forest, along with every other piece of land managed by The National Forest Service, benefits from loose restrictions regarding the use of metal detecting. The only restriction placed upon metal detecting is that if you find something which you believe to be a historical artifact you are supposed to report it to the forest management office. Otherwise, the enormous 240,101-acre forest is open to all kinds of treasure hunting.

The forest itself is split into three regions; The Athens Unit, The Marietta Unit, and The Ironton Unit. All of these divisions are located in southern Ohio, two of them in south-eastern Ohio. The land was originally cleared for lumber use, so there has been recent human activity which could result in treasures from the 18th and 19th centuries buried beneath the new growth.


Don’t miss a single piece of buried treasure! Read about 41 Metal Detecting Tips from years for swinging a detector.


6. National Trail Parks and Recreation District (Springfield, Ohio)

This location is different from the others on the list because it isn’t just one location. The National Trail Parks and Recreation District is a collection of 24 city parks all located in Springfield Ohio.

According to the CEO of the National Trail Parks and Recreation District Tim Smith “You can use your metal detecting equipment in the open park areas, you are required to return the turf to its original condition. You are not permitted to go on any athletic areas; softball, baseball, soccer, golf courses, etc. You are not permitted to go into any fenced/secured areas, pools, stadiums, etc. You are not permitted to utilize your equipment while events are ongoing in the parks.”

Given that many city park systems either require a permit to metal detect, or more likely do not allow metal detecting whatsoever, this is definitely a city that detectorists can support. Springfield is located just north-east of Dayton so it would be a great weekend getaway for those who live in the city and are looking for places to treasure hunt.

For more information visit… https://ntprd.org/


7. Cleveland Metroparks – Lots of People Means Lost Treasures

The Cleveland Metroparks system is another one of the unlikely pubic park systems in the State of Ohio which demonstrates Ohio’s uncommonly positive attitude towards metal detecting. It is 23,700-acres of land separated into 18 total reservations located in the famous city of Cleveland. Although, there are some additional restrictions which the city of Springfield does not have such as requiring a permit to metal detect. The process takes two weeks and comes with a list of further restrictions for the use of the metal detecting equipment within the park. The permits expire at the end of every year and therefore need to be renewed.

To obtain a permit you will need to contact/visit the
Cleveland Metropolitan Parks, Administration Office, Division of Activity Permits at
4101 Fulton Parkway, Cleveland, Ohio 44144 or at (216) 351-6300 by phone.

For more information visit… https://www.clevelandmetroparks.com/


8. Salt Fort Beach at Salt Fork State Park

The Salt Fort State Park is the largest state park in Ohio at 17,229-acres of land and 2,952-acres of water. The Salt Fort Beach isn’t the largest inland beach in Ohio, but it still comes in at the impressive length of 2,500-ft. It also happens to be one of the few inland beaches in south eastern Ohio to be popular enough to be worth visiting looking for treasure. The park itself has some of the most developed, but amazing, amenities common amongst the more well-funded midwestern state parks including a large clubhouse with an accompanying swimming pool.

However, with so much land, even with all of these more developed version of recreation available there is still no shortage of wooded nature trails and grasslands. This is something that is always important to me when it comes to finding great places to metal detect because I love to take trail walks to either work off my frustration from not finding anything, or to work off my excitement of a good day treasure hunting.


9. East Harbor State Park Beach

East Harbor State Park Beach is an 1,831-acre state park located at the very tip of central Ohio on the beautiful shores of Lake Erie. This beach, while still large in comparison to most beaches, would have been the longest public beach on the shores of Lake Erie if had not been for a storm in 1972 which reduced the previously two-mile long beach into a much smaller area located at the north end of the park. And, if it wasn’t for the four additional breakwaters that were constructed and are segmented equal-distant from each other offshore the rest of the beach would be gone today as well. However, thankfully it is not because this is one of my favorite stops along the coast of Lake Erie and a quintessential part of every trip I make down to Ohio.


10. City of Aroura Parks

The city of Aroura Ohio is an eastern suburb of the Akron area just south of Cleveland. Within this suburb there are 11 parks with a total of over 1,500-acres of property all together. These parks have tons of open fields and other similar grassed areas which are perfect for easy day of metal detecting and are especially good for practicing your technique.

According to the director of the Parks and Recreation department of Aroura Jim Kraus the rules for metal detecting in the parks of Aroura are as follows…

  1. Metal Detecting is only allowed during normal park hours which are typically dawn to dusk unless otherwise posted.
  2. Metal Detectors shall respect other park users. Detecting should be limited to low use times at the activity fields, pavilions, boat landings, and other areas within the park.
  3. A reasonable effort should be made to return items of value or significance to its original owner. The Parks and Recreation Department would assist you in this process if you desire.
  4. All excavations must be returned to their original condition.
  5. Metal Detectors are subject to all rules and laws regulating conduct on County property.”

For more information visit… https://www.auroraoh.com/467/Parks-Recreation


11. City of Hillard Parks – A Great Weekend Treasure Hunt

The city of Hillard is a small suburb of the states capitol Columbus and has a total of 12 parks cumulatively. These parks are visited regularly by the nearly 40,000 residence of the city and have large amounts of open space and other recreational areas which people use every day. It’s location also makes it perfect for college students at Ohio State interested in metal detecting who are looking for somewhere to go on the weekends.

Most importantly, according to the Assistant Director of Recreation and Parks, Phil Schroeder, they “do allow metal detecting in the Hilliard Parks, except inside the fenced areas of the pool.”

For more information visit… https://hilliardohio.gov/recreation-parks/


12. The Beaches of Maumee Bay State Park

Maumee Bay State Park is 1,336-acres of land on the coast of Lake Erie. It also has some of the finest recreational facilities that I’ve ever seen. The clubhouse is enormous and has its own pool, even though its right next to one of the great lakes. The beach itself is kept immaculately clean and has been shaped into an interesting pattern of half circles. This of course means that you would want to go detecting near the end of the day or early enough in the morning that you get there before they clean the sand. This is certainly one of the most scenic location on this list, and definitely would be my pick if I was looking to stay at the lodgings of one of these facilities.


13. Buck Creek State Park Beach

The land of Buck Creek State Park was once the setting of a small battle between the Native Shawnee and the American’s who, led by George Rogers Clark, led a 1,000-man conflict in 1780. Although, today Buck Creek State park is more well known as a year-round attraction for recreation and appreciation for the natural world. In total the park is 4,016-acres of land located in Ohio’s Clark county. However, the C.J. Brown reservoir built by the Army Core of Engineers, in which the parks boundaries surround, is what makes this location attractive to detectorists. This beach is not the largest or most visited in the state, but it is the quintessential small-town getaway that is just filled with classic Midwest scenery. Plus, the city of Springfield is just a few miles away so you could spend an entire day detecting both this beach and the parks of Springfield.


14. Springboro Parks – Treasure Hunting in City Parks

Springboro is one of the more upscale suburbs of Cincinnati, although with the way that Parks and Recreation Director Greg Mytinger describes their metal detecting laws you wouldn’t know it. According to him, “The City of Streetsboro Parks & Recreation Department currently does not restrict the use of metal detectors within its city parks.” And even gives you well wishes by finishing his statement encouraging “Happy Hunting!” Only in Ohio will you get that kind of warm reception when you ask to metal detect in the parks of a posh city. Best of all, they have a total of 10 parks so you could spend days searching them all.

For more information visit… https://www.cityofspringboro.com/Facilities?clear=False


15. Oldfield Beach at Indian Lake State Park

Indian Lake State park is a 5,100-acre park with 2 different inland beach’s both on the shore of the namesake Indian Lake. Located in west-central Ohio Indian Lake State Park is one of the most visited parks in the entire Ohio state park system. And, although the park does have two beaches the more popular and larger of the two is the famous Oldfield Beach which draws a crowd almost every day in the swimming season. However, if you don’t like the self-conscious feeling that a crowd can often elicit the other beach is still popular enough to be worth your time.


Relevant Metal Detecting Laws in Ohio

  • Metal Detecting in State Parks: Metal detecting is prohibited in state parks except for the sand areas such as the beaches. However, permits can sometimes be acquired from park officials for use of a metal detector on other park land.
  • Metal Detecting in National Forests: Metal detecting is not restricted on any land managed by the National Forest Service. The only restrictions are ones which mandate that finds of significant historical value are supposed to turned in to the National Forrest Service.
  • Metal Detecting in City Parks: Most city parks either don’t allow metal detecting or require a permit. The ones on this list do, although rules and regulations can always change so it’s best to contact the Parks and Recreation Department of the city before you start looking for treasure.
  • Metal Detecting on Private Land: Just like in every other state, trespassing is a crime. You should always obtain permission from the landowner before you metal detect on private land.
  • General Practice: Always respect the Treasure Hunter’s Code of Ethics which can be found here… https://www.metaldetector.com/learn/buying-guide-articles/getting-started/code-of-ethics
  • General Practice: Always do your own due diligence and call the office of wherever you plan to detect to ensure your legal use of their properties. Laws and regulation can and may have changes since the posting of this article. 

Ohio Metal Detecting Clubs


Best Metal Detecting Shops in Ohio


Looking for More Places to Metal Detect?


David-Humphries-Metal-Detecting-1

David Humphries here, Wow! A couple years ago I grabbed my son’s metal detector to take on a camping trip. I thought it would be fun to walk the beach and just do a little sweeping. Little did I know I would be bitten by this amazing hobby. Read more ABOUT DAVID HERE

11 Best Places to Metal Detect in Kansas (MAPS INCLUDED)

11 Best Places to Metal Detect in Kansas (MAPS INCLUDED)

A couple of years ago I was heading west and had to drive pretty much straight through Kansas to get to where I was headed. Of course I brought my metal detecting gear. (Who’d go on vacation without taking the gear right? 😉) At the time the state seemed to be a boring, but beautiful, characteristically midwestern state with nothing special about it in particular. But, after coming back to the Sunflower State for a proper vacation I discovered something amazing…

Metal Detecting in Kansas
Metal Detecting in Kansas

Until I went to Kansas for myself, I had no idea the state is pretty much a metal detectorist’s dream. Originally inhabited by nomadic Native American Tribes, Kansas has been inhabited by everyone from Spanish conquistadors to French fur trappers before eventually being overtaken by frontier towns. Even better, Kansas was home to many battles in the American Civil War. Essentially, the place is a relic hunters paradise!

That’s not to say that detectorists looking for treasures of all kinds can’t find what they are searching for… it just means that even if you’re just looking for some coins or jewelry you still might wind up discovering a real piece of history!


1. Shawnee Mission Park – Great for Metal Detecting

Shawnee Mission Park is located at the very tip of the northeast of the State of Kansas, right in greater Kansas City location, at the border between Kansas and Missouri. The Shawnee Mission Park is a massive 1600-acre multi-use park that impressively is most visited park in the entire state of Kansas. You know what that means… tons of foot traffic and potentially dropped coins, jewelry, etcetera.

However, unlike all of the state parks on this list, at Shawnee Mission Park you don’t have to only stick to detecting on the beaches. Because this park is owned by Johnson county the rules regarding digging holes while metal detecting are much different.

Metal detecting at Shawnee Mission Park
Metal detecting at Shawnee Mission Park

In fact, all you have to do is get a permit from Johnson County Parks and Recreation Department for around $6.00-$11.00 which will last you all year. For more information about this permit visit… https://www.jcprd.com/642/Annual-General-Permits

That being said, if you did want to metal detect on the beach at Shawnee Mission Park that wouldn’t be a problem. This park is named after a beautiful 120-acre lake, Shawnee Mission Lake, which is the heart and soul of the whole area. That being said, whether you like to look for treasure on the beach or treasure in the fields, Shawnee Mission Park has you covered.


2. Shawnee County Swimming Beach at Lake Shawnee

Even though this place has a similar name to the first location on this list, don’t let it fool you! The Shawnee County Swimming Beach is quite a distance from Kansas City, and is in fact located in the westward town of Topeka. Built as a Work Progress Administration Project Lake Shawnee was created from 1935 to 1939 when it was finally available to over 5,000 fisherman who attended its opening day.

However, one thing that these two loctations do have in common is tourism. Lake Shawnee has been cited by the tourism industry as the top travel destination in all of Kansas and it’s no doubt as this one lake is visited by over a million people every year for various recreational activities.

This beach is, of course, more of coin and jewelry type of location rather than somewhere where you can expect to find some historical relics. But what a coin and jewelry location it really is. Just imagine, a million people a year wind up at this lake, in its waters and on its beaches, there’s bound to be some rings, earrings, necklaces, and especially coins just waiting to be found.


3. Corporate Woods Founders’ Park

Corporate Woods Founders’ Park is a 52-acre recreational park that has tons of forested trails and wooded areas. This park is on this list because it is one of the few city parks in Kansas that both allow metal detecting and have a large amount of wooded land for you to metal detect in. State parks have plenty of wooded land, but due to laws regarding digging holes on state land it is impossible to legally metal detect anywhere besides their beaches. City parks in Kansas often allow metal detecting, but rarely have any substantial wooded areas for nature lovers like me.

That being said, the city of Overland Park allows metal detecting but only with the use of a permit… something very common amongst city parks in this area of Kansas. Luckily, unlike Johnson county which makes you pay for a permit, the City of Overland Park will issue you a five-year permit for free. For information on how to obtain this permit call the Indian Creek Recreation Center at (913)895-6390.


4. The Beaches of Glen Elder State Park

As this is the first state park on the list, I must warn you that while there are no laws that prohibit metal detecting on state land in Kansas there are laws which prohibit digging holes on state land. That is what it is most likely that you will only be able to metal detect on the beach as digging a hole in the sand isn’t nearly as frowned upon as digging into the dirt or grass. This is something that goes for every state park on this list and is something that is pretty much standard nationwide.

Metal Detecting Beaches of Glen Elder State Park Kansas
Metal Detecting Beaches of Glen Elder State Park Kansas

That aside, the beaches of the Glen Elder State Park are definitely not going to leave you wanting for more places to metal detect, even if you can only detect on the beach. That is because the Glen Elder State Park is on the north side of the 12,500-acre Glen Elder Reservoir which is more commonly known as Waconda Lake. Waconda Lake is one of Kansas’s lakes and the land surrounding comprises one of the state’s largest parks clocking in at around 13,200 additional acres.

Besides the parks amazingly beautiful in its scenery, the countless recreational opportunities bring tons of foot-traffic every year to the Parks beaches. As it is a state park you can even camp right in the park if you are planning a trip to try out some new spots in Kansas. However, you should always be as respectful as possible in regard to what you take and how “in the way” you are at a state park. You don’t want the rangers giving you any trouble as they may still ask you to stop metal detecting, something that would be terrible if you had camped there specifically to do some metal detecting.


5. The Beaches of Cedar Bluff State Park

This is another beautiful state park with plenty of beachfront to go treasure hunting on. Unlike the Glen Elder State Park. However, the Cedar Bluff State Park has beachfront on both side of its namesake reservoir. In fact, the entire park is split into two distinct areas which comprise its 850-acres of land.

The north side of the 6,800-acre Cedar Bluff Reservoir is The Bluffton Area which is the more developed and feature rich side of the lake. On this side you can expect for the beaches to have a great deal more foot-traffic than on the south side, but you can also expect them to be more heavily managed. By this I mean that it is more likely that the sand will be raked once a week on the north side as compared to once a season on the south side if at all. This means that there will be more chance for you to find something someone has dropped on the northside, but there’s also a higher chance it will get picked up or damaged by the sand rake.

The south side of the Cedar Bluff Reservoir is known as the Page Creek Area and offers an undeveloped experience on the shores along with plenty of primitive camping. One advantage of this side of the reservoir, at least how I see it, is that you won’t be bothered nearly as much when you’re out-treasure hunting.


6. Antioch Park

Antioch Park is another city park located within the bounds of Johnson county and is actually the counties oldest park. While this park isn’t nearly as big as the Shawnee Mission Park, coming in at only 44-acres, it is still a heavily visited area that attracts up to 700,000 people every year. That means that it gets almost as much foot-traffic, but instead of that foot-traffic spanning 1,600-acres it only spans 44-acres for you to search! 

This park has two fishing lakes and plenty of open fields as well. Just remember, because this is a city park in Johnson county you will need the Johnson county metal detecting permit which you can find at… https://www.jcprd.com/642/Annual-General-Permits.


7. The Beaches of Perry State Park

Perry State Park is located in Jefferson county, Kansas, in the bustling city of Ozawkie. The park has 11,000-acres of total land and water, but, the crown jewel of Perry State Park (at least in regard to detectorists) is the Perry Reservoir and its 160 miles of shoreline. Not all of this lake’s shoreline is owned by the state, but a large portion of heavily trafficked public beaches can be found on the east side. The reservoir itself is a huge attraction for fisherman across the state but camping and tourism in the area ensure that the beaches of Lake Perry are never empty for too long.


8. Big Bull Creek Park

Big Bull Creek Park is the largest park in the Johnson county parks department coming in at 2,060-acres of land. Opening only two years ago in 2018 Big Bull Creek Park is also one of the newest parks in Johnson county. This park has a full 18-hoe disk golf course and is already being visited by thousands of visitors every year.

This park made it on the list because it is still relatively unknown compared to other parks of its size, so if you like open fields and wooded trails but don’t like crowds of people being nosey while you’re trying to search for treasure then the Big Bull Creek Park is the place for you.

Just remember, because this is a city park in Johnson county you will need the Johnson county metal detecting permit which you can find at… https://www.jcprd.com/642/Annual-General-Permits.


9. The Beaches of Milford State Park

While Milford State Park can’t take the trophy of the most visited state park in Kansas it definitely can take the trophy for the largest reservoir. Located in Junction City the Milford Reservoir is the state’s largest lake coming in at a whopping 15-709-acres. The park is located on the southeastern shore of the lake and, itself, comes in at over 19,000-acres of total wildlife area. Of course, the beaches are the only thing that a detectorist can utilize in a state park, and luckily the Milford State Park has no shortage of them. Extremely popular amongst anglers, Milford Lake gets its fair share of swimmers and tourists from all around the state every year.


10. Cimarron National Grassland

Welcome to the relic hunter’s paradise in the State of Kansas! The Cimarron National Grassland is the largest area of public land in Kansas as it contains 108,175-acres of land which is, importantly, managed by the Forest Service. National Forests lands, unlike state parks, allow the recreational use of metal detecting on its land. That along with its immense size and potential means that the Cimarron National Grassland is one of the best, if not the best, place to go looking for some unique piece of history long forgotten and buried by time.

11. The Beaches of Lake Scott State Park

Lake Scott State Park is one of the most historically significant state parks in the state of Kansas as it is the site of the only known Native American pueblo in the entire territory. And, while of course these remains were declared a historic landmark and can definitely not be metal detected upon, that doesn’t mean you can’t try you luck on the beaches of the nearby Lake Scott. Given that it’s unlikely to find anything historic on these beaches its lucky that the history of the area brings in hundreds of thousands of visitors every year which swim in the Lake and bring with them coins, jewelry, etcetera.


Metal Detecting Laws in Kansas

State Metal Detecting Laws

The State of Kansas has no laws which directly prohibit, or even mention, the practice of recreational metal detecting. However, State Parks do have rules which prohibit the practice of digging and removing property from their parks.

Most, but not all, state parks will allow metal detecting on their beaches only as digging holes in the sand isn’t as damaging to an area as digging holes in dirt or grass. More information can be found on the State’s Parks and Recreation Department Webpage here… https://ksoutdoors.com/State-Parks/Park-Regulations

Local Metal Detecting Laws (as they relate to locations on this list)

Johnson County, KS requires a permit to be purchased every year for the privilege of metal detecting in their county’s parks. More information can be found here… https://www.jcprd.com/642/Annual-General-Permits.

Overland Park, KS requires that a permit be obtained, although for free and it last for five years. Information regarding obtaining this permit can be found from the Indian Creek Recreation Center at (913)895-6390.

General Best Practices for Metal Detecting


Metal Detecting Clubs in Kansas

Metal Detecting Shops in Kansas


Looking to More about Metal Detecting?


David Humphries, Writer and Creator of METAL DETECTING TIPS. After borrowing my son’s detector and finding $.25, I was bitten by the metal detecting bug. See my About Page – Here

41 Metal Detecting Tips and Tricks

41 Metal Detecting Tips and Tricks

Looking for some tips to improve your odds treasure hunting with your metal detector? I’ve complied a list of every tips and trick I’ve used or learned swinging a metal detector especially if you’re a beginner.

1. If at all possible buy a decent metal detector when you get your first one.

I’m not saying you have to spend as much as you can and get some thousand-dollar professional grade metal detector, but something in the $300 to $700-dollar range is really where you want to be.

Anything less and you start getting metal detectors that don’t have all of the features and capabilities that you will want to have as you go from a beginner to a novice. Anything more than that and you most likely are going to get a metal detector with functionality that you can’t fully take advantage of just yet (plus if you wind up not continuing to metal detect you won’t be out a bunch of money).

2. Don’t get easily discouraged.

When metal detecting in general, but especially when you’re just getting started, there will be plenty of times when you don’t find anything. There will be even more times when it seems like all you can find is trash.

Metal Detecting Tips
After hours of scanning – Success!

The general rule of thumb when it comes to probability in being successful while metal detecting is that you are going to find a lot more trash than you are going to find treasure. That goes for all detectorists from beginner to professional. The difference is that the professional understands this fact and deal with it, and the beginner gets discouraged and gives up before they find anything of value.


I think it was Charles Garrett the founder of Garrett Metal Detectors that said ” You need to search for 10 hours digging every sound before you get proficient metal detecting

Charles Garrett – Garrett Metal Detectors

3. Dig on every hit.

This one goes along with the last one in that it can be easy to get discouraged and not dig a signal just because it sounds like another signal that turned out to be trash, or one that you weren’t even able to locate.

However, as a beginner you are going to want to (and if you want to be successful you are going to have to) dig everything. You can’t know if it’s going to be trash or if it’s going to be treasure unless you put in the work and dig it out of the ground. Plus, simple probability will tell you that the more hits you dig the more opportunities you have to find something good. Not to mention the experience you gain from pin-pointing any target and unearthing it.

4. Start in your own yard to get comfortable with the metal detector.

When you first get a metal detector you are going to want to practice a bunch and also find the setting that work best for you. Instead of trying to figure this out once you’ve driven an hour to some beach, why not dial everything in back at home? Who knows what you could find waiting for you in your own backyard?

Personally, after thoroughly searching my entire property I was able to find a bunch of coins, some old tools, and of course some nails, pop-tabs, and pieces of foil. But, I was able to learn how to use features such as: discrimination, sensitivity, ground-balancing, and even how to adjust the volume of the signal.

5. Use an Overlapping Scanning Technique.

One of the worst mistakes a beginner detectorist can make is having poor scanning technique. If you don’t overlap your swings then there is no doubt you are missing ground and therefore possible missing treasures. I noticed that I got double the amount of hits when I first started using an overlapping technique, a huge improvement for such a small change.

6. Always sweep over the dirt you dig out of a hole.

When you are digging out a hit make sure to periodically sweep the coil of your metal detector over the pile of dirt you dig out of the hole to check if the object has already been dug up. I constantly dig up too much in a single dig and wind up putting my object in the discarded material pile, so I always make sure to check it every few digs to make sure I’m not wasting my time.

7. Keep your coil parallel and close to the ground.

Coil discipline, or the ability to always keep the coil of your metal detector parallel and close to the ground when detecting, is a skill learned with time. However, if you can start learning it from the beginning you avoid having to unlearn bad habits. Having a coil that is parallel to the ground ensures that you are detecting the ground directly below the center of the coil and thus helps you when it comes to pinpointing a signal. Having a coil that is close to the ground ensure that you are detecting as deep as possible which means your chances of getting a signal are instantly improved.

8. Use headphones… and make sure they are comfortable.

Of course, most metal detectors have a speaker. But, if your metal detector also has a headphone port use it. Wearing headphones helps mitigate the annoyance you may be causing to people around you, and even if you don’t care about that, headphones make it easier to hear (and are more sensitive to) a signal than the speaker on your metal detector.

When I bought my first headphones it was a game changer. I’ve played with lots of models and even borrowed many brands. It gave me a great chance to summarize what I found in this article: Selecting the BEST Headphones for Metal Detecting.

Just make sure they are comfortable. I hate wearing uncomfortable and itchy headphones for hours.

9. Take your time Scanning.

If you are moving too fast it is possible that you will miss a signal, and most likely you are going to miss ground. Slowing down and taking your time is the only way to make sure that you aren’t missing anything important.

Metal Detecting Scanning Tips
Metal Detecting – Slowly with an Overlap

10. Be respectful and follow the law.

This is probably common sense to most people, but then again common sense isn’t always common. So, just as a reminder, make sure to always be respectful and to leave as little of a trace of your detecting as you possibly can. This means filling in holes, not digging too deep, and in general not destroying the land that you are detecting on.

The team at Fisher Labs has a great article on the Metal Detecting Code of Ethics. You can read it here.

Moreover, unless you own the land or have express permission from the land-owner, you need to make sure that it is legal to metal detect on the land you plan to detect on. Plus, even if it is legal you need to make sure to follow any possible rules or regulations that go along with metal detecting at these areas. It’s not fun to get a ticket because you didn’t check with the DNR before detecting on a restricted portion of a state park.


Here are some tips if you are looking to find coins.


11. If you find one coin… you’re probably going to find another.

If you find one coin in a location it is always a great idea to make sure to search the area around it because you will often find another coin or many other coins. I once found three mercury dimes within a foot and a half of each other.

12. Go to the beach.

The beach is one of the most common places to find coins, and it’s often easier to dig them up when they are surrounded by sand.

13. Always go detecting after the snow melts.

It’s extremely easy to lose something in the snow, so it stands to reason that people are probably losing coins, rings, and other jewelry in the snow. When snow melts it leaves everything in plain view on the ground, ready for you to find.

14. Use a smaller coil if you are in a trashy location.

A small coil will have a smaller search area which will be easier to control when you are searching in a particularly trash infested area.

15. Carry a belt pouch to hold your finds.

One of the best investments I’ve made is to get s small pouch that I can carry all of my finds in. I recommend getting one that you can slip your belt through so that it is always accessible but never gets in your way.

The folks a Garrett have a nice in-expensive pouch that has great reviews. You can find it at Amazon here’s a link to read more. Garrett Metal Detectors Digger Pouch

16. Don’t clean a coin until you are absolutely positive of what it is worth.

By now most people know this from watching re-runs of pawn stars, but just in case you didn’t get the message, never wash an old coin before what you know it’s worth. Washing a coin, especially an old one, can damage it if not done extremely carefully.

17. Use a Pinpointer.

A pinpointer is a handheld metal detector that allows you to focus in on an object while you are digging. The benefit of a handheld tool is that it is easier to use when you are digging. Moreover, a pinpointers small size also helps you in small spaces. I invested in a pinpointer a couple of years back and now I use it just as much as my main metal detector.

Seriously use a Handheld Pinpointer. It will increase what you find and make it so much faster. Read more about Metal Detecting Pinpointers in this article: Do You Need a Pinpointer for Metal Detecting.

18. Look for high-traffic areas.

Going to locations such as tourist beaches to increase your chance of finding something is smart. What’s even smarter is further narrowing down your search location to increase your chance of finding something. Walking paths, hangout spots, the sand in front of a pop-up snack stand (after it’s gone of course), these are all great places to metal detect.

19. Record all of your finds.

An old trick that I learned from a guy I met on a beach on Lake Huron. Recording all of your finds, and not just the object description but also the location, is how I keep everything straight. Knowing where I get the most hits and where I get the best finds is essential to staying profitable.

20. Rotate the places you go to metal detect.

This tip works best when used in conjunction with the previous. If you often detect in areas with steady foot traffic, then the best way to maximize your chances is to give each of your locations a chance to ‘re-generate’. Rotating when and where you detect is the smartest way to accomplish this task.


Here are some tips for metal detecting on the beach.


21. Consider using a Pulse Induction metal Detector.

Very low frequency or VLF metal detectors offer discrimination feature which are helpful on the beach don’t get me wrong, but if it a saltwater beach then the additional sediment can cause interference that messes with a VLF metal detector. Pulse Induction metal detectors are unaffected by hot rocks, and yes, even a saltwater beach.

Metal Detecting Tips for the Beach
Metal Detecting Tips for the Beach

22. Walk in a grid pattern.

I’ve already explained why using an overlapping scan technique is essential to proper metal detecting technique (see number 5), but to be sure you are finding everything that you possible can I recommend walking in a grid pattern. Pretending that a grid exists on top of wherever you are metal detecting is a good way to keep track of where you have, and have not, already checked.

23. Go to tourist beaches.

A tourist beach probably has the lowest chance of holding some ancient relic, but if you’re looking for jewelry than a tourist beach is the best place for you to be. I know a bunch of people who find gold rings, necklaces, and earrings all summer long when they hunt for treasure on a tourist beach.

24. Go to abandoned beaches.

If a tourist crowd isn’t your thing, or even if you’re just looking for new places to treasure hunt, don’t overlook abandoned beaches. Just because an area is dead now doesn’t mean that it was never a spot where people gathered. Abandoned beaches are great, and importantly quiet, places to metal detect.

25. Carry a sand sifter.

A sand sifter is a metal basket with perforations that you can use to sift through beach sand more efficiently. Sand in one end, sand out the other, and your treasure is left behind completely uncovered. I don’t go beach hunting without one, neither should you.

I spent hours researching the best shovel and sand sifters. I combined all of it in this article: The Best Metal Detecting Digging Tools.


Here are some general tips for metal detecting.


26. Go treasure hunting after it rains.

This tip comes with benefits that are two-fold. Firstly, it’s only logical that after it rains the soil will be wet and easier to dig up. Taking advantage of the weather when it comes is a good way to get ahead.

Secondly, as we all know water is conductive. That means that after it rains the metal in the ground will be easier for you metal detectors coil to find. Not only that but you will also be able to find targets that are deeper down. So, even if you think you’ve already tapped out a location it’s not really done until you detect after it rains.

27. Try to go out in the early morning or late at night.

This is a tip especially for those who like to keep to themselves. But, all of us can agree that a trip to the park can turn into a scenario where you’re answering more questions about what you are doing than hits from your metal detector if you’re not careful. That is why I’ve always liked to try and go early in the morning or late at night.

28. Make a checklist of all your gear.

This probably isn’t a problem for those who have been using the same setup with the same equipment for a long time, but if you’re still worrying about losing something or not bringing something on an outing then a checklist of all your gear is what you need to keep things straight. I suggest keeping a digital copy, so you always re-print a copy when you need one.

29. Carry a test coin.

On days when you’ve gone hours without getting a single hit you are going to start thinking that your metal detector is broken. If you don’t already carry some change in your pocket, I suggest starting to at least keep one coin on you at all times. This will help you keep your sanity, and also check to make sure everything is in working order.

30. Carry coils of different sizes.

Different areas require different coil sizes plain and simple. A large field is going to be much better suited with a large coil, and the same goes for a smaller trashy area and a small coil that is easier to maneuver. This trick isn’t much of a trick at all seeing as how this is essentially just a policy of having the right tool for the job.

If you’d like to learn more about metal detecting coils, I HIGHLY recommend you check out this article. How Does a Metal Detecting Coil Work

31. Carry coils of different types.

Everything I said about coil sizes goes for coil types. There are a few different coil designs to choose from and all of them have their own purpose. Knowing how, and when, to use each one is one of the most effective ways to increase your chances of finding something good.

32. Always carry extra batteries.

Metal detectors come with a wide range of battery styles and types, all of which depend on the model and price range of your metal detector. However, whatever kind of battery your metal detector uses I highly suggest getting some extra batteries. While you’re at it, get some extra chargers and make sure to use them.

33. Remove trash find when you come upon them.

I get that you probably don’t want to carry around a bunch of garbage finds, but the next guy doesn’t want to dig up a ton of garbage either. Especially if the next guy is you. Removing trash when you find it is just good practice when it comes to metal detecting etiquette.

34. Use a hand shovel that has a built-in blade for sawing roots.

Roots are probably the absolute worst part about metal detecting. A hand shovel with a serrated edge is one of the most convenient ways to get through even the thickest roots you might encounter. A flat, knife like, hand shovel is the best in my opinion due to its superior sod cutting abilities.

I discovered a great find on Amazon – the SE Prospector’s Choice 12″ Serrated Digger (Link to Amazon for over 1000 reviews) is perfect in terms of price and quality.

35. Do research if you are looking for relics.

There is always a chance you can find a relic hidden away in your front yard, but if that doesn’t work out then you might want to do some research to up your chances. The internet, library record, heck even just stories from the locals; anything that points to an area having the kind of relics you are looking for is what you will need to make sure you’re working smarter not harder.

36. Dig slowly and carefully.

The only thing worse than damaging a coin by washing it is to damage one with the blade of your shovel. Digging slowly and carefully doesn’t ensure that you will never damage a find, but in my experience it definitely helps. I’ve had it happen to me, and so has any other detectorist, but it still sucks when you wind up being the reason that an object isn’t worth as much as it could be worth.

37. Carry a jug of fertilizer water if you are digging in grass.

I learned this one from a buddy of mine who let me metal detect in his front yard even though he had a pretty good lawn. So, along with promising to cut and replant the sod after I got a hit, I also promised to carry around a gallon jug of fertilizer water to pour over the area after I was finished digging up the find. It was kind of a pain at first, but I realized later it was actually a great idea, so I started doing it whenever I go out to metal detect in a grassy area.

38. Bring a strong screwdriver to use as a pick.

If you either, don’t have a handheld pickaxe or don’t want to carry it around; a large flathead crew driver can be a great tool for breaking up rocks or just hard soil compacts. I personally use one instead of pickaxe because the screwdriver will fit in my back pocket and the pickaxe won’t. Make sure it is both long and thick enough to handle a fair bit of ware and tear though, a sturdy handle doesn’t hurt either.

39. Make sure your metal detector is waterproof before you use it in the rain… or in the water for that matter.

Metal Detecting Tips for Water
Metal Detecting Tips for Water

Most midgrade metal detectors come with some sort of water-resistant qualities. However, a lot of cheaper ones and even some expensive ones don’t. Make sure to check if your metal detector is waterproof before sticking it in the water is all I’m saying. I’ve haven’t had it happen to me, but friends of mine tell me they’ve had more than a couple issues with rain getting into the connections in their machines.

40. Consider water level changes when beach metal detecting.

Most notably on beaches affected by the tides, water level changes need to be accounted for while beach metal detecting. Areas near the top of a high tide, or even just a high-water level after a heavy rain, are when the waves will deposit anything floating in the water. That isn’t to say that there is no point in taking stab at the ground below high tide, in fact the heavier the object the further below high tide it will have sunk to the ground.

41. Rock piles are always worth checking out.

This one isn’t always useful, but it’s worth mentioning that a pile of rocks is a terrible place to drop a coin, or even a piece of jewelry. At least it’s terrible for the person who dropped it, for you, it poses an opportunity to find something that someone without a metal detector probably couldn’t.

Bam! a HUGE list of Metal Detecting Tips

Wow, 41 Metal Detecting Tips! I sure hope you found this article to be a great resource and you were able to learn a couple things. The fun is discovering a little piece of treasure. I still remember my first find – YUP it was a quarter – not even a silver quarter. But I remember the feeling – MONEY FROM HEAVEN!