Finding a Place to Metal Detect!

You are ready to unearth the greatest treasure of your life. You have your metal detector, your shovels and the whole day just for hunting. What you don’t have is a good place to do it, and without a place to dig, you won’t be able to uncover anything.

Finding a great place to dig is a problem every detectorist has to face. The lucky ones have a mentor who doesn’t mind showing them the ropes. The rest of us have to figure it out for ourselves. Here are a few ways to find new places to hunt, as well as the types of locations you’ll want to seek out.

Public Parks

Parks are a great place to hunt for metal because they attract a lot of people, and the more people who have walked that ground, the better your chances for finding something.

Before you start digging your way to China in your local park though, you need to find out if detecting is allowed there. Some parks allow it, while some don’t. If you don’t see any signs up at the park that specifically prohibit it, that doesn’t mean you are safe to dig. Ignorance isn’t a defense for breaking the law. If you’re digging where it isn’t allowed, you should fully expect to be given a ticket, whether you knew you were breaking the law or not.

Your best bet if there’s no sign at the park about digging is to find the city or village hall in town. Ask the clerk there if metal detecting is allowed in the park. The clerk will have all the city’s ordinances on hand, so even if she doesn’t know the answer, she should be able to figure it out.


If you live by a beach, you’re in luck. Many beaches allow metal detecting, although there are rare exceptions. Beach hunts can be challenging, but you can find some amazing things there. Make sure you pay attention to signs at the beach – occasionally you’ll see one that specifically says metal detecting isn’t allowed.

Old Schools

Head to your local library and dig up records on old schools that used to be located in your area. They may be long gone, but the metal people dropped there over the years is still there, just waiting to be discovered. Old schoolyards are a great place to find coins.

Old Homes

If you ever have a chance to hunt at an old home, you’ll be in for a treat. You’ll have to turn your discrimination up because there will be more signals than you’ll have time to dig. If you’re really lucky, you’ll stumble onto the location for the outhouse that used to be there. Outhouse sites are a wonderful place to find all kind of metal and even highly-valuable old bottles.

Ask Your Family and Friends

The best place to start is by digging your own property. But if you’ve tapped yours out, it’s time to move on by asking your friends and family if they will let you hunt on their land.

Even though you are crazy in love with metal detecting, you need to realize that not everyone feels the same way you do. They aren’t waiting by the phone hoping you’ll call them and ask if you can hunt on their land.

Some people spend a lot of money on landscaping and lawn treatments because they care deeply about how their property looks. Those types of people aren’t going to want you digging up all the money they’ve spent on their yards. So you’ll likely get a lot of refusals, even from close friends.

But you’ll also get a few curious friends who will say yes. They may have an interest in seeing what you can find on their property. Whatever you do, make sure you don’t repay their kindness by trashing their yard. Dig clean plugs that won’t leave their yards looking worse for the wear.