I received a call from Claire with news that her platinum and diamond engagement ring was “lost at sea” at Bunker Bay, which is a very nice part of Western Australia’s south west corner.
I decided to drive down early the following morning as it is a 300km drive from where I live and having to be back at work on Monday left me a small window of opportunity to try and hunt down this ring.
Now the story goes a bit like this…..Claire and her husband (Andrew) had actually taken their rings off and secured them safely in a bag before venturing into the shallow water which is a really smart thing to do. The second part of the story doesn’t go so well as I believe Andrew was attempting to “wash and polish” the diamond ring in the really fine sand at the waters edge…….folks, this ain’t going to end well is it?
Well, we all know what happens next (Andrew doesn’t know but is about too). Yes the ring has mysteriously disappeared (dropped) into the soft, fine, wet sand and now Andrew has to come up with some quick talking and a really good excuse as to the whereabouts of the ring. Perhaps a passing seagull snatched it up in its beak? Me personally, I would have collapsed onto the beach, sobbing and crying and pleading for forgiveness…..given the dire situation, grovelling is perfectly acceptable for grown men. Anyhow, the ring is GONE, GONE, GONE and it’s not coming back anytime soon. Mother Nature wants back what was originally hers…..precious metals and diamonds.
Fortunately, Claire and friends had the composure to Google for help and this is where I join the story.
Well Bunker Bay is absolutely beautiful with turquoise waters and sand like icing sugar. This picture postcard sand is stunning but I was really worried when I first ventured down to the lost zone. The good news was everyone was confident that the area the ring landed into was only 5 metres by 5 metres. The bad news was the sand is so fine and soft that anything heavy was going to be sinking at a rapid rate. I did my best to hide this fact at the time but I knew that recovery was going to be extremely unlikely.
Anyhow, I grabbed my metal detector and fired it up and set power and sensitivity to maximum as I was going to need it.
The machine I was using gives off a steady hum with minor changes in the background noise that aren’t signals from buried metal but are simply part of the circuitry.
At the 10 minute mark, I heard the smallest of audio changes that I stopped for briefly. I scanned the spot again and the “signal” was gone….maybe I had imagined it or maybe it was the circuitry noise playing tricks on me? I scanned again and I heard the tiny signal once more. Whatever it was was deep and at the very edge of what my detector could sense.
I sunk my steel digging scoop deep into the sand and emptied the contents to one side and quickly scanned the hole which was now quickly filling with water…..the signal was there again only slightly stronger. I now knew there was a metal target down there but it could be a coin or a fishing sinker….I took another big bite of sand from the hole and dumped the contents to the side. I scanned into the hole and there was total silence…was the target out?
I then swept the metal detector over the big pile of wet sand that I had excavated and immediately got a huge audio signal. I dropped to my knees and started carefully sifting the wet sand through my fingers until I felt something heavy in my fingers. There was Claire’s ring safely in the palm of my hand. I was totally stunned at what I was looking at as I had given myself almost no chance of finding it. The ring would have been beyond range within an hour or two and would have kept sinking until it met some sort of resistance which is typically a shell or rock layer……who knows how deep but possibly metres !
It would have remained there for centuries……
Well the ring is back on Claire’s finger where it belongs and Andrew is back in the good books where he belongs. What an awesome day !!
Here are some photo’s of the occasion. Smiles all round.