Lost in Grass Tag | The Ring Finders

How to Find Lost Keys – Hire a Metal Detector.

from Paihia (New Zealand)
Contact: 021 401 626
A rather desperate Glenn phoned me at work yesterday afternoon – The jeans he was wearing when he went out to price a job had a previously undiscovered hole in the back pocket.
He parked his BMW, dropped the keys in his pocket and set to work.
His heart sank when he headed back to the car and realised his predicament.
There were a few catches to this tale; He needed the car to operate his business, The section was derelict and overgrown with waist high weeds, metallic scrap from renovations littered the site (along with domestic detritus from the previous habitation), said property was a solid 2 hour drive away – a smidge under 100miles(!) … and they were lost four weeks ago.
The one redeeming point was the fact that the keys were ‘safe’, albeit lost. They were tucked in the weeds somewhere and not going anywhere.
Mind you, neither was Glenn without them.
I managed to wrangle the next morning off work and headed south at 3am, I needed to be back at the desk at noon so made sure I was on site and ready to go at first light.
Using photos Glenn had taken of the property for his quote, I had several good known points and was able to determine his aged tracks between them.
The actual task of getting the coil close enough to the ground was impossible with the matted thatch of grass and thistles that had grown noticeably in the warm early summer weather.  I would be fibbing if I said I didn’t regret taking this one on when I saw the state of the undergrowth, especially with only a few precious hours available and a revisit out of the question.

First of all, I simply walked his exact path without the detector in order to define the known route and avoid confusion with other peoples tracks and the disturbance later when vegetation had been swept around by the coil.  The exact stops where he took the photos were dotted with fluorescent spray paint. These would become focus points where body position changed (turning, crouching etc). Likewise, places where he walked downhill were likely a higher probability as the material on the back pockets is more relaxed and mobile than when stretched going uphill.
I verified with Glenn by phone whether the keys were in left or right pocket. Since he walked clockwise around the property it weighted the search to that side of the tracks, slightly.
Out with the detector.  I started with a fast pass along the entire route. The endless hits on old buckles, tarpaulin grommets, roofing iron offcuts, toy cars and bits of galvanised tin was soul-destroying but each target had to be verified.
Second pass was a wider sweep, nudging slightly further into the weeds either side, although it was so dense the coil wasn’t making any headway.
I switched to a much smaller coil but while it was more efficient at getting into the grass, it became quickly apparent that with the lesser footprint I wouldn’t be able to clear the area before running out of time.
Final plan was to physically break down the thistles and flatten the grass as much as I could, then use my ‘dustbin lid’ big coil with its larger detection area and greater depth capabilites.
Three hours after starting, I got a reasonable high tone, out with the pinpointer and rummaged it through the long grass.
Parting the stalks showed a key, several keys!
Not sure who was more relieved, me or Glenn when he got the photo of the now found keys.

Lost Gold Earring in Northland Garden – Found!

from Paihia (New Zealand)
Contact: 021 401 626

At the start of the year, Renene was clearing undergrowth on their rural Northland property. Later on she realised that one of the many branches around the head had somehow spirited away her sentimental earring.
As so many people who lose rings or bracelets do, after a fruitless search for the lost earring they conceded defeat and accepted the loss… Until she started searching online for a metal detector to try and find her special missing gold.

We spent a few minutes on site going over her recollection of how she and her husband tried to find the lost earring, where they thought it would be, and the infamous spot ‘X’ was marked as a start point.

The vegetation was very tight, and a layer of past weedings and prunings covered most of any remaining exposed soil. I nearly took the headphones off to run on speaker the entanglements were so bad, however for such a small piece in a sea of background chatter I needed every subtle tone… I quickly cleared the ‘easy’ bits around the site, and headed out to change to a smaller coil to get in under all the shrubs when I got a new bit of intel – the path they usually took in and out.

Back onto the standard coil, and I started to grid the higher probability area of their entry/exit track.
To one side was a pile of branches which I worked hard up against, intending to leave it for a later, more detailed pass if it wasn’t found in the early searching. But since I was there, I’d clear them and close off this area now.
Heaved the pile up and swept the coil underneath, a faint whisper made my ears perk up. I put the detector down and shifted the pile.

A second pass and there was a distinct but subtle tone. Out with the pinpointer and just under the surface, on it’s edge, was the lost earring already making itself very comfortable for a long stay.

I made my way out and beckoned to Renene to come over to see her newly found earring lying where it had fallen some 10 months ago.

She was a bit pleased!

 

 

Lost Keys Found In Paihia Orchard (with some metal detector help)

from Paihia (New Zealand)
Contact: 021 401 626

Simon was collecting oranges in the orchard and didn’t realise until he got back to his car that his shorts had a car key-sized hole in the pocket.

A couple of days later he found me through TheRingFinders and I arranged to meet him onsite.

It was a huge area to scan, so I put my Search & Rescue tracking skills to work and retraced his meanderings in and around the trees – Made more interesting by the fact he’d been back the previous day for another look with a borrowed detector, which meant differentiating his original track from the fresher one. Good game!

I snaked my way through the trees following the two day old sign. Bruised leaves, broken stems or blades of grass under tension all reduced the search area to no more than a metre wide strip. These clues all led me to where he’d sought out the odd ripe fruit from random trees, retraced his steps, or just changed direction for no apparent reason, and right in the heart of the orchard where he’d finally filled the bag and turned to head back – were the keys, tucked under the grass.

It would have been a mammoth task to search the whole orchard without the advantage of being a tracker.

He was rapt, and more than a little impressed. Twenty minutes from getting out of the car, I was on my way home.

Sometimes, the eyes can be faster than the coil.

 

 

Ring Lost in Whangarei, Eaten by Cow – Found!

from Paihia (New Zealand)
Contact: 021 401 626

Over the years, I’ve had my share of looking for rings lost while gardening, throwing things for the dog, or just being lobbed randomly during arguments.  This was my first hunt for a ring that had been vacuumed off a finger by a calf!

Luke made contact after reading of my successful hunts, and for me the story was too intriguing!  He had been letting the calves suck his fingers in order to keep them tame, and the hand came back minus the ring…

On the day in question, he hadn’t banked on the powerful combination of bovine slobber and suction!  Catch was, had it been spat out on the ground nearby,  chewed, swallowed and passed through the digestive system to turn up elsewhere in the paddock…or was it still in there?

He was very pleased to see me, and we headed straight out so he could show me where it all happened, also pointing out the calves that I could end up scanning!  The ground had been dry, which was good as it meant it was unlikely to have been pressed deep into mud – however the Autumn-flush grass was mid-calf (That’s my calf, not the cow variety) which was going to make it very hard work.

I started at the “Point Last Seen” and nosed the coil in and around the grass in the immediate vicinity with no luck, so I resigned myself to gridding about an acre of very lush pasture.

With my back into the corner of the wire fences, I took the first swing, and was immediately disheartened by the erratic threshold sounds of electrical interference from a buried cable. Not overly bad fortunately.  Second swing…. third swing and a golden tone rang through the headphones! I parted the long grass, couldn’t see anything.  Out with the pinpointer, it chirped away…but I still couldn’t see anything.

A slight change of head angle and a flash of yellow lit up in among the dead stems. It was already making itself very comfortable in there, and I was glad I didn’t have to use the rubber gloves 🙂

Knocked on the door of the house again, and was met by a huge smile when I held the ring up – That’s when I found out, it’s their wedding anniversary in just a few days.

Lost GoPro Camera @ Camp Yowochas Fallis, Alberta.

from Edmonton (Alberta, Canada)
Contact: 1-780-497-2118

 

 

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Received an email from Tyng on Saturday requiring my assistance to locate his Gopro camera while on a three day retreat at camp Yowochas with his grade six students he was supervising,

Tyng was available to go on Sunday I agreed to assist him, Tyng picked me up at 7am we headed out 50 miles west of Edmonton to the camp we arrived the weather was not at all in our favor Rain and Cold Brrrrrrr.

We had to walk about ½ mile through the bush into an open field Tyng showed me the area that they were playing hide and seek in tall grass I must say the area that he thought the camera was lost created a huge challenge to swing my detector.

After about two hours out in the tall grass I was convinced that the camera was not in that area, Tyng was 110% sure that was the area he lost the camera, I told him lets back track to the last known location which was at the other end of the field where the grass was shorter they all sat down in a circle and talked about their time at the camp then they left the field.  

Within 15 minutes I heard a loud scream Tyng found his go pro in the area I suggested he was ecstatic to have the camera back with all the pictures and videos he had taken while on the three day retreat with his students.

Another happy client thank you Tyng for entrusting me to find your GoPro also your generous reward.