Tuesday, March 14, 2017

3/14/17 Report - One Beach Profile And How It Related to Finds. Biological Factor That Can Cause Objects To Sink.

Simplified Beach Profile.

I attempted to illustrate the beach where I was finding things yesterday.  It wasn't really that steep.   The beach was wide, and the water had been high up on the beach, nearly to the dunes.

The two black lines with the arrows pointing to them define the range of where the targets were found - a few yards back from the waters edge at low tide and about three fourths of the way up the long slope to the dunes.  The area was way too wide to be considered a coin line.  The were spot where you could see the course beige sand on the slope that I have come to associate with cobs.  That sand was thinly scattered though.

The two prominent (not very prominent) features were a small hump a few yards from the water and a very small intermittent cut towards the top of the slope.  The targets ran from the hump up to close to the small cut - nothing seaward of the hump or beyond the cut.

The heaviest concentration of targets was under the hump.  Most of those targets were at least a foot deep and laying on the top of a pile of shells that was about a foot under the sand.  There appeared to be a layer of rocks below that, and a few more targets, some of which were irretrievable down there.

It appeared to me that the layer of shells was in the not too distant past piled on the rocks and then later covered by sand.

Under the hump that I'm talking about were pieces of copper, heavily corroded modern coins, and a few sinkers.  On top of the hump was found smaller pieces of copper and a piece of two of aluminum, which evidently was washed up with the latest accumulation of sand.  Also there were near the surface some fish hooks and small iron pieces, which I did not dig.

Folded Piece of Copper Sheathng.
This picture gives one example of the type of thing that came from under the hump.

Higher up scattered over the rest of the slope below the cut were coins.  These coins were not as deep as the objects under the hump.  I didn't abandon any targets that were higher on the slope.  Some coins were very near the surface.

The black line showing where the objects were located scattered up and down the slope represents about twenty yards.

I decide to make the walk down to the area described above even though it was a good long walk.  I thought it would be the best bet for two reasons.  For one thing, it seemed scooped back a little farther than the rest of the area.  I couldn't see the small cut from that distance.  The second thing was that it was cleaned of sea weed.  The rest of the beach had seaweed scattered over it, particularly near the high water mark.  This area was clean of seaweed.  It plainly looked like the most recent tide had washed out the light surface stuff rather than adding to it.


If you don't think you were a fool when you were young, you probably haven't learned much after that.  I was a jerk.  That is part of what it is to be young.  At least it was for me.  Then by the time you get a few things figured out, it is too late.


I got an email from Joe R. concerning biological factors contributing to how objects sink.  Here is what Joe added.

...If an item is 1-1/2"deep in the surf zone and a colony of sand fleas moves through, it will end up 3-4" deep. Of course as sand erosion may later occur it will bring the objects nearer the surface the same process may happen again. Now sand may be pushed up to the original level of the beach , but the object may now be 8" or so deep. Thus I say settling, in a way, does occur...

Thanks Joe.


The surf will remain small, but as I described above, the tides are pretty big.

Happy hunting,