Cash is King

When the beaches are sanded over and not producing I look for other hunting opportunities. Living at the coast and being an avid beach hunter my next best bet is what I like to call “rock hopping”.

Rock hopping (named after the rock hopper Penguin) is exactly what this type of hunting entails. No sand scoop, just your detector and some sturdy digging tools and an eye for exposed rocky sections that could have been covered by sand in the past. This type of hunting is extremely testing on hunter and equipment. Finds can be plentiful but getting them out is the trick.

The rocks will trap anything heavy dropped by beach goers and there it will stay for many years, sometimes fully exposed to the trained eye, no detector necessary.

On this occasion I decided to try a well hunted area with a different search coil. The Coiltek 10 x 5” does the trick due to it being slim and easy to fit into tight spaces as well as having really good target separation. Depth is not an issue, who wants to dig more than 10cm into rocks anyway. I had hunted this area before and having pulled out many silver coins in the past I was drawn back with old silver coins in mind. With my trusty Minelab CTX 3030 being my weapon of choice the coins started appearing in my finds pouch. Nothing could have prepared me for what was to happen next.

After working my grid in both directions I decided to move a little closer to the water’s edge, jumping over a few gullies I found a section that had some loose stones and surface sand. It looked promising and before I even got working on the area I saw a nasty sand filled plastic bag lying in one of the pools. I was immediately annoyed at this site and decided to remove the intruder for disposal.

I stood above the bag and looked down at it, that’s when I noticed a piece of paper inside the bag. I bent over and I immediately knew it was paper money. R200 notes, they are unmistakeable with their orange colour. By now, I had at least two people standing about 30m from me watching this crazy guy with a detector on the rocks. What is this guy doing, I’m sure they thought I was silly. There is no treasure out there !!

I played it cool, as I have done so many times before. One never wants to attract attention on a beach shouting “I found a bag with money !!!!!”. I turned my back to the inquisitive on lookers and went down for a closer look. Yep, it was paper money. My heart jumped a beat or two. All sorts of things go through your mind when you stumble onto a find of this nature. I tore the bag open and removed a wad of R200 notes. It felt amazing to hold and see all this cash. I immediately took photos, making light of the situation to any nosey bystanders by acting super relaxed, this is nothing new. Yeah right! It was my first major cash stash alright. I fumbled around with my gear (miss direction for my onlookers) and secretly hid the cash in my hunting jacket.

By now my thighs were burning from being down all this time so I stood up and played with my machine again, making for boring viewing to somebody watching me. This guy does not know what he’s doing, they must have thought. Wrong, my plan was working, no attention. I went down again acting like my search coil needed attention this time. While down there I tore the bag open and felt through the sand. Another clump of something was inside. I pulled it out and there was a bunch of R100 notes in my hand. After putting those notes aside I emptied the sandy bag. The R100 notes, with a trick of the hand, were stashed safely in my jacket in under half a second.

The bag was empty of its contents now. I stood up and adjusted my gear again. Super boring viewing now. When I turned to see who was watching, both my admirers had died of boredom and were focused on something else. I picked up the plastic bag and got the heck outta there, slowly.

I was not planning to leave the sight so early, but with a fist full of cash in my pocket I figured I had done okay for one day. Back to the car, and off home wondering about this windfall smiling all the way. It turns out there was R1600 in notes in the bag.

There are so many theory’s that one could come up with as to the origin of the cash. My thinking is it was payday, drinking on the rocks and our unfortunate worker slipped and said goodbye to his week’s wage. I’ll stick to that scenario.

Treasure is everywhere and cash is king !!

By Henry Clapton

August 15th, 2015

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