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relic hunting. random walks or gridding

pulltabfelix

Active member
I noticed a older post by dan(nm) on one 3 hour relic hunt, after 3 hours of not finding much he switched to gridding one area and started finding his desired relics. So that got me to thinking.

off and on maybe once a month during the summer, I relic hunt with my Nox 800 in a proven civil war battle field are in urban Atlanta. My normal habit was just to walk around at what I think are obvious places to hunt. In terms of civil war relics, not a productive method for relics but quite productive for urban metallic trash.

so, maybe I should switched to gridding. I already have switched my Nox 800 for a new CTS3030.

share with me your results of random walks vs gridding on a relic site. When I see many relic hunters detecting for civil war relics it appears they are using the random walking detecting method and finding civil war relics. Of course kind of hard to really tell since they typically film just the found good targets.
 

Waterdog

Well-known member
While hunting for coins I used to hunt the area of a baseball field between second and third base, back and forth, going north and south, then west and east, then slightly change the direction for years. Sometimes I would find nothing other times I would find a Indian head penny that I had missed other times I had been there. I figured it was the angle of approach that I had made. My friend I used to hunt with told me that there was other ground to cover, but I knew there was yet another Indian head penny out there in that area.
 

HanoverDigger

Well-known member
I do the random walk....until I find a bullet or two. Then I'll start a grid search. It paid off when I found one IH cent. Found a total of 8 in a 10'x10' area that day. Went back to the same spot, different day, different detector, and found four more. No more were found in later hunts.
 

Ronstar

Well-known member
The biggest area we hunt here is the ever producing AdLawn and intramural play field on campus. Both of us originally did the wander and dig method. Then once we got a good target either a circular pattern or a common grid pattern was done. We’ve gone back to areas and randomly gridded and found larger coins that made us wonder how did we miss that.
You know you’re going to find coins at a park, you know you’re going to find relics at an old homesite or known other event so why not grid from the start? I use two or three visual markers to form a boundary and stay within those perimeters and come back the next day and start where I quit.
Maybe the crime scene searches I’ve done over the years have conditioned me to such a mind set. Usually you get one chance to clear a scene and then play hell trying to get back in after that, so why not get as much as you can cleanly in your first outing?
Yes I wander too but just to locate the boundaries of the area versus where the event begins. I also think when we wander we probably swing faster than we should too.
But all this doesnt explain why we always find the best stuff on the way back to the rig at the end of the day now does it? 🧐😂
 

pulltabfelix

Active member
My area that I can still hunt are a few small parks and along creek and branches. The parks are a mixture of open fields and wooded areas. Creeks have high banks about 12 foot and rounded stones and a few larger basketball sized boulders and some areas and about 50 yards of hard bedrock with cracks. Total park and creek areas are about 25 acres and is a proven civil war relic area. Open fields are about 40% of the parks with the rest woods that still can be hunted.

I strongly suspect that my problem is I bounce around my Civil War public areas and private permissions. I have about six of them
 

pulltabfelix

Active member
I am going to change my hunting techniques. Without thinking about it I was doing the random walk in proven that had given up a lot of good civil war relics in the past 30 years. First I thought, well the AT Pro was not the right detector and after 4 years jumped to the Nox 800. Same results. Finally realized that their may be to problems. #1 - not ever gridding these areas. #2 - trying to learn the Nox 800 in 50 tones with a high frequency hearing loss. Now I have the CTX3030 with more visual clues than most detectors. But still, I think the CTX will help quite a bit, I have to change my hunting patterns. There is no way hunting in a major battle area of the Civil War did the detectorists get all the relics in 30 years. That just defies logic in my opinion. And I have to increase my time hunting the hunting time on past proven sites that are public or private permission I have secured. I think I should take a lesson from my dog. I walk him in the park every day that is very popular. He knows exactly where the squirrels dig the rib bones out of the trash cans and drop them on the ground. He constantly pulls on the lease to drag me to those areas every day. I just wish he could sniff our silver coins.
 

fwcrawford

Well-known member
I have done both methods with good results.
However, gridding an area is no guarantee you will not miss something either.
I learned this one day while searching a school yard with a little snow on the ground.
I had gridded this area before and found coins, but was shocked at how many coins I had missed on previous hunts.
The snow allowed me to see where I had been, so I could keep track of my movements.
Without some form if indicator to keep you on track, it is very easy to get off although you think you are waking straight lines.
Now this was on flat ground and open.. imagine how much more difficult it would be on uneven ground or in the woods.
Just something to think about.
 

pulltabfelix

Active member
I have done both methods with good results.
However, gridding an area is no guarantee you will not miss something either.
I learned this one day while searching a school yard with a little snow on the ground.
I had gridded this area before and found coins, but was shocked at how many coins I had missed on previous hunts.
The snow allowed me to see where I had been, so I could keep track of my movements.
Without some form if indicator to keep you on track, it is very easy to get off although you think you are waking straight lines.
Now this was on flat ground and open.. imagine how much more difficult it would be on uneven ground or in the woods.
Just something to think about.
I agree with you. others have suggest little utility flags, others a tennis ball at each end and move it when you turn around to head the other direction. I will probably use 1/2 tennis balls so they won't blow away. I did some practice gridding today without any end markers on a 30 x 30 foot square in a park flat area and on the third pass by the middle of that pass was 3 feet back in the other direction I had already detected. So not easy. On the beach I drag my sand scoop and it is easy. On the volleyball court I have my foot prints as a guide. I do know if you hunt a field in the early morning with the dew on the grass your foot prints are easily used as a guide when gridding.
 

fwcrawford

Well-known member
Exactly… if you can see your path in the sand or dew covered grass, that is a big help.
I have noticed the same thing as you…. I end up way off if there is no reference.
A chalk line would be nice!!!😂🤣
When people find targets in areas they have gridded a few times, I think this is the reason why.. at least in many cases.
 
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