Kowharewa Bay Tag | The Ring Finders

Lost ring Found in Water at Kowharewa Bay, Tutukaka, NZ

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Chris was on holiday in Tutukaka, near Ngunguru in New Zealand. Shortly before he left, he and some friends went for a swim out from Kowharewa Bay, a shallow bay inside Tutukaka harbour.
On returning to the beach, he noticed his sentimental gold and palladium wedding ring was no longer on his finger.

His friends put a post up on the local Facebook community group asking if anyone had found a wedding ring at Kowharewa Bay. Posting on Social Media is a common reaction of people desperate to have their lost ring returned, unfortunately in this day and age it also attracts the wrong sort who actively seek to pocket the lost ring.

I was fortunate to see this post early though, and given the tides it was very unlikely anyone would attempt until the following day. I was on the road at 1am the next morning, making the long drive to Tutukaka to catch the 4am low tide.

This time of year, I do not do deep wades at night – Being ‘bumped’ by a shark on a night water search last summer was very unsettling. I could however cover the beach and shallows, thus minimising the likelihood of a ‘magpie’ detectorist sniping the ring. I would return on the afternoon tide to cover the extensive area out wide in the bay.

I spent the high tide period that morning snoozing in the shade, catching up on lost sleep from the early start. Then, as the tide fell, I commenced the water search.

It was a huge potential area, with only a fixed start point of a boat ramp, and a general direction. It would be easy for less experienced people to get ‘lazy’ with the coil, especially as the hours wear on and the arms start to hurt from pushing the detector against the water resistance.
Progressively moving out into the bay as the tide fell, I had covered just over 3,000 square metres; 3,097 to be exact. Yet another aluminium can pull tab had just been put in the pouch and on checking the location again, caught the sound of a probable ring at the outer edge of the swing.

The scoop slid through the mud and came to the surface, a plume of grey spreading out behind it. My fingers felt through the mud retained in the scoop and closed on a wide wedding band. I checked for an inscription as mentioned in the Facebook post, yes. The odds were very good this was the one.

I marked the spot just in case I needed to restart the search and went ashore to phone the Chris. He gave me a bible verse over the phone, to which I replied, “I have your ring here!”
A stunned silence for a few seconds before I heard the reaction on the other end of the phone… The sort of reaction that gives me the ‘warm fuzzies’ and drives me to do my utmost to reunite people with their lost items.

Chris’ friends met me shortly afterwards so I could hand the ring over to them, they would pass it on to him next time they met.It had been a very long day, so another short kip under the trees before the long drive home.

My tenacity and attention to detail is what gives me the edge and enables me to maintain a 95+% success rate. If you have had a friend or neighbour try to find your lost ring without success, don’t give it up as truly lost – give me a call 🙂

Please, please, don’t post detailed locations on Social Media. Contact an experienced Ring Finder as soon as possible for the best chance of getting your precious lost ring, bracelet, watch or necklace back. If you do want to post in case someone has , or may find it, keep it vague. A simple photo with any inscription and just the name of the beach will suffice.