Observations of Ocean Beach Hunters

As a form of entertainment while doing some other work on my PC I have YouTube running on my second screen. I look at other beach metal detectorists. There are a couple of guys who really know what their are doing in terms of reading and hunting the beach. I can always pick up a new bit of learning from them.

But for a lot of the beach hunting videos there are some metal detecting YouTubers that are entertaining to watch, but sometimes I cringe at their techniques or lack of knowledge of beach hunting.

Many don’t seem to care about the tide schedules and some are hunting at high tide and are forced to move up to the upper beach were statistically you don’t find a lot of valuable jewelry.

Probably the worst thing that I see often is they will spend all day on a sanded in beach just locating and digging light junk. Well maybe they are out just for the exercise. As far as that goes, fine. A bad day at the beach is better than a good day at work. And in all fairness they may be on their day off and this was the only time they can hunt.

But if you have the time and want to be a serious beach hunter, learn to read the beach and if the beach you are hunting is not giving up the treasures, move one to one that is giving up the treasures. Find a beach that is giving up lots of heavy targets like sinkers and other heavy items. When you find those items then slow down your search and hunt that areas hit it hard.

Another item that you need to consider is your metal detector. A serious beach hunter will almost always have a good PI detector.

Another video shows a guy using a Garrett ATX hunting on a beach that has no hotels/condos and few people. Yet on the same video about 1/2 mile down the beach are a string of high rise hotels. Does he wonder why he is only pulling in bottle caps, foil and pop tops? Does he not wonder why he is finding no jewelry?

Before you go ocean beach metal detecting, do your research. There are many beach hunting guides on Amazon and some even give the best locations to search. I am serious, a couple hours of research on reading beaches and locating good ocean beach hunt sites will result in pulling in the gold jewelry.



Typical Vacation Metal Detecting


Recently viewed a vacation metal detecting video where the guy spent 3 days on the beach. His results were 207 modern coins valued at $22.09, only one stainless steel ring.

Ok, you can stay home and do that in the local park and save yourself a lot of money. Don’t mean to be too critical of this guy, but his hunt is a good illustration of how things could have been better.

  1. he stayed 100% in the dry sand. This will only get you blanket spills not heavy jewelry. Should have been hunting low tide in water or wet sand.
  2. he did not show his junk, but with 207 coins, you can bet he dug 600 junk targets or more over three days.
  3. He appeared to just hunt the beaches in front of his hotel. He should traveled to 2-3 different beaches each day in front of other expensive hotels.

Ok, again, he was not a beach pro and probably didn’t know where and when the good stuff if to be found. Do your research and watch a few of the pros at beach hunting. The real pros are hard to find because they rarely video tape and post videos on Youtube. Ed the Beach hunter is one exception. Watch his videos carefully and look where and when he is hunting. He consistently finds very valuable rings. But the average beach hunting video will teach you nothing since it is just guys and gals going to the beach on their vacation with very little if any beach hunting skills. So don’t waste your time on these videos. How do you determine the difference between a pro beach hunter and vacation dude? Simple vacation dudes will spend days digging light junk and not heavy gold jewelry. When you are finding in wet sand light junk like pull tabs, zinc pennies and fishing hooks and leaders then move away from that area. That is all you will find there even if you hunt that area for days on end. Find an area that is producing heavy lead sinkers and old corroded coins and stay in that area until you find some gold rings. They are there if you are in front of an expensive hotel or beach condo. Oh yeah stay off dry sand and get in the water and wet sand at low tide. If there are recent storms in the past few days and you find cuts, then hunt those cuts. If you don’t know what a cut is, then search for beach cuts metal detecting on Youtube.

If you wish to move to the pro category of vacation beach hunter then you may wish to consider my beach guide you can buy on Amazon.

Metal Detecting Field Guide to Florida’s West Coast Beaches. This guide included a lot of the techniques that professional beach hunters use to read the beach and find the heavy gold jewelry on a consistent basis. It also has the GPS locations of the high beach goer activity on the west coast of Florida.

The Gold Jewelry Numbers inland searching


This is an accurate video when it comes to digging gold jewelry inland as opposed to beach hunting. One comment to this video question the need to dig all targets when hunting gold jewelry. I will just tell the guy who made the comment to just look at the AT Pro VDI chart. Notice that there is no single VDI number or close by numbers that can accurately indicate gold jewelry. Gold jewelry values shows all over the VDI chart. That is the reason you have to dig all signals in an area that is likely to have gold jewelry like parks. Hunting ocean beaches is a completely different story. There is less junk on an ocean beach and junk on an ocean beach means different things on the lower beach and upper beach. Light junk (pop tops, tin cans, fishing lures) on the lower beach (wet and in water) means you are not going to find jewelry at that spot. Heavy junk like lead weights, nails, old corroded coins indicate you are likely to find heavy gold and silver jewelry. On the upper beach light junk like pull tabs, foil and tin cans indicate people activity and thus likely that you will find gold jewelry lost from the sun bather. So on inland hunts, you have little choice but to dig all signals above 35 on the AT Pro to be sure not to miss the gold. You may dig a hundred or more junk finds before you strike gold.

Professional Beach Hunters

Who are these guys? Well I will id two of them that I call semi-professional beach hunters. The only difference between the pro and semi-pro is the pro travels a lot to distance beaches in other states and countries. The pro focus almost entirely on very exclusive and expensive beach hotels where the found bling is very valuable. The semi-pro tends to just work the beaches within a 2 hour driving distance. Ed on the west coast and NH on the east coast are what I would classify as semi-pros. These two guys seem to be close to professional amateurs in that they live near the ocean and based on their videos no how to read beaches and find the gold. They don’t seem to waste their time in areas of the beach that are less productive than stripped or eroding beaches by recent weather events.

On Youtube you can view the west coast guy who goes by the name of Ed the Beach Hunter and on the east coast NH Beach Metal Detecting.

The pros don’t make Youtube videos or draw publicity to themselves for the obvious tax reasons and their personal security. You draw your own conclusions. Here is a profile based on three professional beach hunters that I cannot name upon their requests. The average age of the three is 37 years old. They tell me they find in excess of $200,000 a year in bling. They travel by air and Uber to minimize their downtime. They spend an average of 2-3 days on a hunt location. Two of them when out of the country hire local talent for protection on the beach hunts and pay them about $200 per day. None of them stay in the expensive hotels they hunt. They often hunt at night on some properties that tend to run off non-guest beachgoers. To do their night hunts they have expensive light weight night vision that the local security cannot detect. I ask them what kind they used and they were reluctant to talk about that aspect of their metal detecting trips.

In conclusion, don’t expect to find any Youtube videos from the professional beach hunters. But there is still lots to learn from the videos of the semi-pros like Ed and NH guys.

Ed the Beach Hunter very nice diamond ring find

A little about Ed the  Beach Hunter. Best I can tell he lives on the west coast. His videos are well produced. You see him dig out the junk and great finds so no doubt he is seems to be the real deal. He does get a little excited and uses colorful language, so be forewarned. He is fun to watch and you can learn some valuable beach hunting techniques if you pay attention. For instance in this video he has hunted this beach before and notices some significant sand erosion and was hunting in that area when he found the monster ring.





Why serious beach hunters use the best detectors

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You can usually tell the serious beach hunters from the vacation guys by the hardware they are swinging. Look at this video and pay attention to the last part.

A machine like the Minelab Explorer has the best of both worlds. A double D coil and lots of frequencies being used at one time. So if you are within 2 hours from an ocean beach with lots of hotels and condo’s then seriously consider buy a better beach detector. You can find the Minelab Explorer SE used for about $500 on ebay.

Setting up a day long ocean beach camp

On a beach hunt you are often hunting a beach 20-30 minutes hiking time away from your car. To have more beach hunting time you need to bring what you need for an all day beach hunt. You do this by establishing a beach hunt base camp.  This starts with a light weight 4 wheeled sports cart like the one you can buy at Dick Sporting Goods Store for $59. Now you can take a beach umbrella, lots of water, favorite foods, towels your metal detecting gear a portable chair. In short anything you need to relax in comfort between beach hunts. Pull the cart on the wet sand to your beach hunt base camp and set up your camp. You then can hunt up and down the beach. When you are ready to move, simply pull your cart further up or down the beach to your new hunt location. I have used this portable base camp transport method often on all day hunts.  I find that resting and recharging in comfort every 2 hours makes for a much more pleasant and effective metal detecting day. For base camp beach security, I place my Carlon Vibration Alarm in the cart (available on line and at Walmart). If anyone tries to rummage around in the cart the Ultra loud 100dB alarm will sound. It has gone off once when I was about 200 yards away from the cart and a male teen was snooping through my cart. He quickly took off walking fast like he was not doing anything. Of course my wallet and keys are always with me unless I am hunting in deeper water.  HH Samuel