100 year old Swimming Hole to be drained, Where do I start digging???

Old Dirtbag

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There is a nearby swimming hole in a small dammed - up creek that is getting ready to be drained. The dam is going to be slowly lowered/removed which is going to leave several feet of silt upstream. This was the most popular swimming hole in the area until about 40 years ago.
I know that there is some good jewelry in there, but what is the best way to detect in a deep silt area? I know where the old tire swing was located.

Please respond.
 

OWK

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Sounds like you already know what you're doing in terms of where to dig.

Once the water's off of it, it's no different than hunting dense soil.
 

SoCalDesertFox

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If you can find any information about the water currents in the swimming hole, you could determine where things were likely to have settled/gathered outside of the commonly-occupied areas like the swing.
 

rick67

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It will thicken up in a month or so after water table drops. If you live somewhere down south pay attention or it will be overgrown in no time.

I have a shallow natural pond next to me. A foot deep of water, 4-5' foot of silt. It dried up for the first time in thirty years during a drought. Took about month and it was like a lawn and walkable. Of course it was dead in the middle of summer and didn't think of detecting it until the rain came.
It will still stick like glue for a while. Use a flat type digger or shovel.
IMAG0175.jpg something like this.

I usually carry a ground shark. images-3.jpeg this will not work and you'll be covered with sludge in no time.
Good luck and HH.
 
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Old Dirtbag

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Water flow out is going to depend on the location (s) where the dam is going to be removed/ lowered. It isn't supposed to be "blown" with energetic materials. I think draining is going to be gradual. Another rumor is that the dam is going to be removed in the center. I will keep you friends updated. I think that this is a good "Honey Hole."
 
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Old Dirtbag

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Will gold items lost at the swing area generally sink where they were lost?
 

pepperj

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Well the way I see it is that if anything sunk to the bottom of the silt it's going to take a really good machine to even come close in detecting the finds, as you said several feet of silt. Where there was a stronger current the silt will be a lot less and might have attracted the heavier objects in crevices.
 

jeff of pa

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IF you can hunt it while it is being drained, Start where The Beach Was.
And every day as the water level Drops Hunt the Freshly drained area.
Dig Everything, Especially those Low Tones.
Don't throw your trash in the water as you dig it like Some did :BangHead:
all they managed to do was frustrated themselves as they Re detected it as the water went down. & saved the good stuff under it for Me :laughing7:

if the rope swing area is the deepest spot
Save the rope swing area For last.
There may be Stolen Items there also.
But it will probably be the Hardest spot to drain.

The Lake I did, The rope swing area has over 20 Slot machines in the Bottom,
Thrown there By State Police in the 40's
Most covered over by a couple ton of Rock.
But some of them got Hung up on the way down & one and other pieces were able to be located
without Diving.

IF like here , Expect The Lake Bottom to have Knee to Waste deep Mud.
that will work like Quick sand.
If you do as I say & work the Beach area as it drains Your Shoes will start Sticking Fast as you walk.
The Fruther you get into the Mud The Deeper it will Get & Don't be surprised if you walk out of your Shoes at some point Or can't Move. If you freeze fast in the Mud Lean forward till your Heels pop Free
Then pull up and move.
As i said, Like Quick sand. The longer you stand at one spot the more Problems.
Don't be afraid of getting Dirty and search every area that has access from land.

Eventually you will be able to walk out in the middle.
By then it will probably look like the surface of the moon or something.
The Mud will Dry & crack. Watch in those cracks as You swing, for Fishing Rods, Beer cans Etc.

Odds are That place will be your best ever .

Most gold rings I found were at the 5" 6" 7" depth
at the Beach swimming area.
I used a sovereign with a WOT coil & found more then anyone else there.
But I also worked the place Dawn to Dusk 7 days a week for 2 or 3 years
there were weeks I didn't go home without a few gold rings a day.

also expect Tons of fishing Lead

and Beer cans the length of your arm & more, Deep .
I had to lay on my Side to reach them.
Don't know what small stuff I missed due to depth, But what was shallow Made up for it.

1 more thing Lincoln wheat cents from the teens come out the color of 2015 Cents.
Only no shine.
Silver come out the color of Clad. Black/dark Gray.
Check all dates
 
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Icewing

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I would start at the bottom of the dam on the upstream side for whatever it may have trapped over time. Then methodically grid your way back up stream to the old rope swing.
 
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P@tch

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I can't believe nobody else has not already suggested this! The "best" way to hunt this to invite all of us on t-net to help you.
 

Mr.Rust

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i would use a shovel and a sifter, just get a hose with a spray nozzle and mount it over the sifter,
Maybe not the fastest way to go but you'll find whats there :)

And if thats too much work i would go with todd lipe's plan :santasmile:
 
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boogeyman

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As Jeff said, start working around the edges as the ground hardens. Each day you'll have a new (lower) strip to work without being waist deep in mud. Take a couple plastic buckets and just drop what you recover in them moving them along as you go. It's a lot quicker to clean everything when you get home leaving you more time to cover area before it gets hauled away buried or a herd of other detectorists show up. As stated above count on pounds & pounds of lead. This you can sell to fishing store or on EBay. Is there the black oozy mud? Take a small bottle of dish soap with and lightly coat your waders/ boots search coil every so often helps the mud to not stick.

We used to search the ponds & lakes in the parks when they started pumping the water out to water the lawns. Water level would drop about 2' everyday leaving a 4 or 5' wide strip around the edge to search. Oh! as a bonus there was a concrete box for an overflow at one of the parks. We'd stop and grab a pile of crawdads on the way back to the van! Treasure and dinner! Doesn't get any better!!
 

Dr. Syn

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Umm, just thinking about the old swimming hole where I am from, we had a long path from the road to back where the hole was. We swam in the Stoneycreek, locally known as the Sulfercreek, from all the mine drain off. Everything was orange in and around it. But anywho, I would think the spots where the path opened up to the hole. The place where you unloaded your pockets and tossed stuff you didn't want to get wet/orange. All rocky areas where something could fall into a crevices or get lost in the grass.

Funny we swam/played in stuff that would make the environmentalists cringe, but maybe one of the reasons we never got sick. Exposure to all the germs and such growing up on a farm built up our immune system.
 

Trezurehunter

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I would just go & start ! You never know where stuff is going to be according to a hundred circumstances when it was lost & a hundred more circumstances Since its been lost.
 
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Old Dirtbag

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The creek will still have a small and constant water flow and I predict that over time the silt will be washed away in the main channel, about 20 feet from the bank. It will expose a rock bottom when silt is removed.

Will rings, chains, coins, etc. be washed down to sand/rock bars. Should I detect in cracks in the bed rock?

I know of a creek that had a dam removed over 100 years ago and it has rock bars on top of bedrock. Where would you suggest I detect below the old dam? Do you think everything has been washed away? Please tell me about your experiences with such locations.
 

Crappies-n-Coins

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The creek will still have a small and constant water flow and I predict that over time the silt will be washed away in the main channel, about 20 feet from the bank. It will expose a rock bottom when silt is removed.

Will rings, chains, coins, etc. be washed down to sand/rock bars. Should I detect in cracks in the bed rock?

I know of a creek that had a dam removed over 100 years ago and it has rock bars on top of bedrock. Where would you suggest I detect below the old dam? Do you think everything has been washed away? Please tell me about your experiences with such locations.

I don't think this is going to happen the way you're thinking it will. I doubt you'll live long enough to see "several feet of silt" disappear. The silt accumulation came from somewhere (surrounding properties all the way up the creek), so what's to stop more silt from building-up?

I also don't think you'll find any jewelry or coinage is going to be moved. Once it hits bottom, it's going to stay there. Not trying to bust your bubble, just being realistic. I hope for your sake I'm wrong. Good luck!
 
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Old Dirtbag

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The creek will still have a small and constant water flow and I predict that over time the silt will be washed away in the main channel, about 20 feet from the bank. It will expose a rock bottom when silt is removed.

Will rings, chains, coins, etc. be washed down to sand/rock bars. Should I detect in cracks in the bed rock?

I know of a creek that had a dam removed over 100 years ago and it has rock bars on top of bedrock. Where would you suggest I detect below the old dam? Do you think everything has been washed away? Please tell me about your experiences with such locations.
 
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Old Dirtbag

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The creek will still have a small and constant water flow and I predict that over time the silt will be washed away in the main channel, about 20 feet from the bank. It will expose a rock bottom when silt is removed.

Will rings, chains, coins, etc. be washed down to sand/rock bars. Should I detect in cracks in the bed rock?

I know of a creek that had a dam removed over 100 years ago and it has rock bars on top of bedrock. Where would you suggest I detect below the old dam? Do you think everything has been washed away? Please tell me about your experiences with such locations.

I accidentally posted twice. Thanks everyone for their info. It is greatly appreciated!!!

I will detect around where the 100 yr. old dam had been and report back with any finds. I grew up near this site and I think that due to occasional flooding the coins may be long gone...
 

Jason in Enid

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If there was a dam, no flood would move coins and rings out. That would require a catastrophic dam failure and the resulting rush of water to completely scour the bottom clean. This isn't the ocean with shifting sands that move items. When things fall into ponds, lakes, etc. they stay exactly in that spot until mechanically moved. They aren't going to wash up to the dam either. Pray the muck is walkable and start detecting at the middle of the swimming area at the water line and move outward from there. If it's never been detected before, be prepared for a ton of trash, and a ton of coins and jewelry.
 

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