Can You Take the Heat?

As I was watching the Joe Patrick videos he mentioned that in August of 1996 he was out detecting on a very hot day and out of the blue had a heart attack.  To make matters worse he was hunting in a rural area and was alone.Fortunately for Joe his wife had given him a cellphone a couple months before and he was able to call for help.  Hearing this made me think about how lucky I have been over the years for I too can remember many detecting forays into the hinterlands all by myself and this was before the advent of cellphones.

Right now here in Texas the temps are beginning to climb along with the humidity.  The mid-90’s we have now will sound oh so good come July and August when 30 straight days of over 100 are not uncommon, and at that point the “Stout heat scale” reads ‘are you shitting me’?  Yep I’m a wuss, a coward, a wimp when it comes to detecting in the heat and you should be too, no matter your age.  The “never quit” mentality is not macho, it’s foolish and stupid.



  1. Check with your doctor if any of your medications might preclude being out in the sun
  2. Have a cell phone on your person (at all times)
  3. Go detecting with a partner especially if you are hunting in a rural area
  4. Hunt during the cooler part of the day, either mornings or evenings
  5. Wear light colored clothes that are loose fitting
  6. Not only be aware of the temperature but be aware of the “heat index” too
  7. Use sunscreen and wear a hat that covers the ears
  8. Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water before detecting as well as during
  9. Avoid drinking caffeinated beverages or alcohol (got that Bubba?)
  10. Take frequent rest breaks


As a result of my neuropathy and arthritis number one is important for me. I am a 13 pill a day junkie and two of my medications cause me to sweat and can play hell with my system if I am out in the sun for any length of time. Be sure to check any such warnings on your meds as well.

Now that I’ve put a scare into you get out and enjoy your pastime. Just use caution during the hot summer months and remember that your health and your family are more precious than any treasures you  might find!


A few of you have told me how much you enjoyed the Joe Patrick interviews and I am happy to say there’s a third one now out for viewing…..

According to Joe there will be a fourth and possibly a fifth coming soon. Great stuff!!


A sign in the window of a bar in New Jersey




Filed under Metal Detecting

8 responses to “Can You Take the Heat?

  1. Roy Rutledge

    I for one do love the heat. Maybe because I was born and raised in Wichita Falls,TX.Anyone that knows anything about TX knows that WF is one of the hottest places in TX. 80 to 100 days a year of temps over 100. I always thought that the hotter is was the better it was.

    Four or Five years ago I went to Phoenix AZ and set up in A RV camp. Was there for 2 1/2 years, temps were up to 115 several times during the summer. The saving grace was that the humidity was only 12 to 18 percent. Just a nice pleasant day. But now as I approach 70 I have found out that the heat is OK, the humidity is the killer.
    I used to go to several organized hunts during the summer months, I always felt like I had an advantage as I was able to continue hunting when the other hunters were going to the sidelines to get a drink or just to get out of the heat.
    Those days are now in the past due to the rising cost of putting on a hunt and the aging of the fellows I hunted with.

    Also just finding a site to hunt has become a problem. I guess as we age all kinds of problems crop up.Just don’t ever look back as someone may be gaining on you.


  2. bill from lachine


    Better to be safe than sorry we lost a member on the Canadian forum several years ago when he was marathon detecting in Colchester in the UK.

    He had a history of heart trouble and couldn’t get to his nitro in time.

    I’ll let the young bucks do the extreme detecting and I just do it as when it suits me.

    Regards + HH


  3. Hate, loath, shun, the heat…I try not to do anything when it’s 90 degrees, and especially when the humidity is over 70. Besides when it’s that hot I don’t have the energy to lug the jack hammer needed to dig, so I don’t detect when it’s that hot…if I’m in the water, different story, the scoop goes in like butter and I don’t break a sweat. hydrate – hydrate – hydrate!

    • Gary I forgot about the jack hammer thing…you are right. The soil here is the worst I’ve ever encountered. The drought this year is also setting a record.

  4. Some very good advice Dick. A lot of folks like to hunt alone, and it’s better to be safe than sorry.
    Also, I would really like to feel bad that it’s so hot, but I remember how we were all freezing our butts off here in the Northeast a few months back while you all were nice and comfy 🙂

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