Friday, February 8, 2013

2/8/13 Report - The Swash & Serpents and Doves

Written by the TreasureGuide for the exclusive use of

Yesterday I posted a short video clip, but I don't think it worked real well.  I don't think the resolution was very good.  The clip showed the swash as I saw it a couple of days ago.

The swash is the area where the water repeatedly comes up over the sand and then back out.  It is where things are washed around pretty much like would happen in a gold pan.  Objects of different size, shape and density are sifted and sorted by the moving water.

If you closely look at the materials accumulating near the waters edge in the swash, you might find some interesting items.  There are places where you will see relatively light objects such as shells and other areas where precious metals will tend to settle.  .

I just discovered that wikipedia has an article on swash.  Here is the link.

Below is one nice illustration from the wikipedia article showing a beach and swash area, which would be pretty much between the still water level and the swash limit.  

Illustration from wikipedia article on Swash.

Near the foot of the step and under the step would be where precious metals would tend to settle, while lighter material would accumulate on the step and on the face of the sloping beach front.

Notice also the ripples in the above illustration.  When hunting in the water, you can treat ripples pretty much like you would salt mineralization or black sand out of the water.  Sand ripples can cause some noise if you sweep your coil over them across the hills and valleys.  If you sweep your coil parallel to the hills and valleys, the hills and valleys will cause less noise and you won't have to adjust your detector settings to eliminate the noise.  That is something I don't bother with anyhow, but I know some people would be disturbed by the signals caused by the ripples.  Of course, some detectors and detector settings will result in more noise from that than others, so it may or may not be an issue for you.

The wikipedia article gets technical but also has some nice illustrations such as the one above.

I received a lot of email yesterday.  Sometimes I don't get any and some times a lot.

One fellow, Terry T., sent me an email showing a copper pin similar to the one I showed a couple of days ago and similar to the one shown on the HMS Sirius web  site that I referred to a couple of days ago..

Terry said,  I found one (copper pin) before Sandy near sebastian inlet. It looks hammered and square to me. Just wanted to share it with you. I really paid no attention to it until I seen what you posted.

Thanks Terry.  That is one reason I post pictures of items like that.  I know that I've dug things that I now wish I had paid more attention to at the time but simply didn't know what they might be.  Finds like that also suggest a good possibility of other related items being nearby.

There has also been a lot of talk about rules and regulations concerning metal detecting in parks lately.  That discussion hasn't focused on the Treasure Coast area where many of our officials know the positive impact of the hobby and how many people it brings to the area.

Let me give my two cents though.  There are times to make noise about such things, as was done last year with good effect in response to proposed state legislation, but most of the time it is better to be, as the Bible says, wise as serpents and harmless as doves (Matthew 10:16).

First, the obvious.  When you are metal detecting or representing the hobby directly or indirectly, intentionally or unintentionally, always be polite, courteous, cooperative, unobtrusive, and in general keep a low profile.  Don't make a spectacle of yourself.  My idea of perfection while metal detecting is not being noticed. Don't go out of your way to interact with people, but when circumstances suggest or require an interaction, make friends rather than enemies.  It is not that difficult.

One thing civil servants don't need or want is to have to make hard decisions.  It is better to not force them to make a decision because when they have to, it will be a decision that makes life easy for them.  They don't want to make hard decisions, and they don't want noise about an issue that makes it appear that it might possibly become a problem.  If an activity is causing them grief, they'll do what ever they can to simply get rid of it.

And there aren't too many authorities out there with a chip on their shoulder looking for a fight.  If you seem to them to be on their side, you will be better off.

That said, generally speaking, if you conduct yourself well, use good judgement and make friends along the way, you'll be better off than if you bring too much attention to an issue or force a decision.  Be careful about how you pursue things.  My advice about how to pursue such things is always to be wise as serpents and gentle as doves.

A front is coming through the Treasure Coast, so the winds are from the West and the surf continues at about 1 - 2 feet.  Pretty smooth water.  That has its advantages and disadvantages.

The predictions are for the surf to increase Sunday and Monday, peaking at about 3 - 5 feet Monday and then decreasing again.

Low tide today will be around 12:30 PM.

Happy hunting,