While I’ve seen a great many changes in the pastime over the years the Tesoro, Kellyco situations are ominous in the sense that maybe we’re sliding down a slippery slope that needs to be addressed.
Here’s my take…
Compared to other outdoor hobbyists we detector users are a small group and there’s a limited amount of money to spread around. As a result those manufacturers, distributors and dealers who don’t take care of their customers or stay one step ahead of the game will fall by the wayside. Additionally as more entrants come on the scene we’re seeing the number of places where we can practice our craft getting smaller and smaller, resulting in detectorists losing interest and selling off their equipment.
Next by most accounts metal detectors are not going to suddenly get that much better. The technology has hit a plateau and most new models now are focusing on design, weight and a helluva lot of hype. Nothing wrong with that but when you have every manufacturer busting their butt to come out with something new every spring and fall there has to be a strain on “everyone’s” wallet. I think we may be seeing it now.
On the plus side…
Forgetting wannabe archaeologists like Warsaw Wally & Heritage Harry, metal detecting is here to stay. The allure and the desire to search for treasure is as strong as ever but it’s now being defined by over crowding, public scrutiny and the loss of land thanks to development and a few irresponsible hunters. No matter how many YouTube videos come on the scene or how many rock stars have you buying their brand you and you alone know what your situation is. I’m guessing it’s not what it once was.
So what’s the answer? I really think we need to come to grips with the “where can I hunt” dilemma because when that dries up…POOF! Used to be you could hit city parks and schoolyards and come home with quite a few decent finds but today detectorists pretty much take what they can get and for convenience sake label themselves relic hunters. We need to change this and we must find a way to change the public’s perception of what we do and how we do it, unless of course you’re content with hunting cornfields. Unfortunately to accomplish this we need movers and shakers and I see no one willing to take up the mantle. Gotta crank out those videos….
Yup, we’re fiddling while Rome burns….
It’s Throwback Thursday!! Here’s one from 2014
FORGET THE HOLY GRAIL!
Metal Detecting, or as some like to call it, treasure hunting, is not an exact science, nor is it a subject you need to have a degree to excel at. It’s a healthy outdoor activity that frequently turns into an addictive pastime, but if you want to make sure that happens you need four things….a goal, decent equipment, a plan and a basic knowledge of how to research. Capisce?
First off you bought a metal detector to find ‘something’. Whether it’s coins, relics, gold nuggets, jewelry at the beach or uncle Buddy’s stash, you had a reason for getting involved and as such you already have a goal. Of course you may be an Indiana Jones wannabe, out to find the holy grail. If so forget it. I’ve already found it!
Next, I am assuming you studied the various manufacturer catalogs, compared apples and oranges, and bought the best detector you could afford. Whether or not you will bother to take the time to learn it’s features and capabilities is another story. If that’s too much trouble for you don’t piss and moan about all the trash you are finding.
Next comes a plan. How are you going to go about achieving your goal? Head down to the schoolyard, the beach, the gold fields or good ole uncle Buddy’s farm? My guess is that you will do all four without any forethought whatsoever. From what I’ve experienced over the years it’s usually open the box, turn that sucker on and out the door! And don’t tell me I’m wrong. I’ve not only seen it….I’ve done it myself!
Research should probably be the first on your list and not the last because to me it’s the most important. You can have all three of the above but if you don’t take the time to research you will be pissing in the wind and your detector will quickly wind up in the closet. Understand too that the odds of finding a hoard, the Middleham jewel or uncle Buddy’s stash, are slim to none, so do yourself a favor and spend more time finding a place to take your detector than you do actually using it. Depressing I know, but as Joe Friday would say, “just the facts, ma’am”….
You’all stay tuned…you hear!
Now having said all this I confess that as of late I have not practiced what I just preached. I find it more convenient to sit on my ass with a glass of wine and tell YOU all what to do. Not so much because I want to but because it’s all I can do right now. I am however sitting here with the holy grail, looking at houses in the South of France and planning my next move. You’all stay tuned.