Ngunguru Tag | The Ring Finders

Grandfathers Gold Ring Lost in Sea at Tutukaka, Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Erin was enjoying a swim at Kowharewa Bay, near Tutukaka when he lost his grandfathers signet ring.
The ring was given to his grandfather on his 21st birthday, and had been passed down to him. One of those things that is truly irreplaceable.
His wife contacted me, and I arranged to meet him at Tutukaka the following day to try and recover this precious part of his family history.
I was on site a little ahead of him, so set about lining up landmarks from a photo his wife had sent me and estimating how far out he would have been given the state of the tide and the 90 minute window they were there.
Kowharewa Bay has a very shallow contour below low water mark, so “waist deep” is potentially a huge area. The timestamp on the photo was invaluable as it told me exactly what the tide level was at the time around loss.
Once that was done, I headed back to the car to get the wetsuit on and make a start.
It was still well before low water, so did a quick calculation of how much extra depth to allow – which ultimately meant the curious onlookers on the beach could only see a pair of headphones and dive mask gliding backwards and forwards through the waves, occasionally sinking out of sight to investigate a potential target.
I finished the first search pattern out to one side of the estimated location and was just turning to head over and start a second run on the other side when the coil drifted over a solid tone off to my side .
Slipping underwater, I fanned the sand away to reveal a well worn signet ring.
Ring recovery is a “Game of Inches”. It’s a slow, methodical, extremely disciplined procedure, when there’s a lot of trash signals it can be extremely mentally fatiguing as well as you listen to and analyse every response.
Get lazy with just one sweep of the coil and you could miss the target and walk right past it.
Had the coil not just grazed the ring in this instance it could have been a long 4-6Hrs in the water into the night until the search pattern opened up far enough to include it.
I waded ashore and phoned to let Erin know I had something for him!
He turned up about 5 minutes later and quickly had the ring back on his finger.

Handcrafted Titanium Wedding Ring Lost at Ngunguru – Found!

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)

Josh contacted me explaining he had lost his handcrafted titanium wedding ring while swimming in the Ngunguru estuary the previous day.
It had been made by a friend for his wedding and whilst another could be made, it would never be the ‘same’ ring with the same memories.
A couple of local detectorists had been out to try their luck, however by this morning – the second day since loss, it had not yet been reported as found.

With a dawn start helping avoid most of the summer holiday traffic, I made the 130km trip in good time. Arriving about an hour before low water. This gave a small window where the current would allow a water search at slack tide, if needed.
While I waited for Josh to arrive, I thought I may as well get started, so grabbed the detector and headed down onto the mudflats.
My tracking experience enabled me to separate the straight line walkers tracks from the wandering footprints of someone looking for something from the previous day, although a couple of recently dug holes did have me concerned.
I had to assume the ring was still here until proven otherwise, so sorted out the areas of highest probability and started with the most likely area it could be located.
No sense in getting kitted up for a water search if I didn’t need to.

Ten minutes later, I lifted the ring out of the silt from in amongst some loose shells and walked back to the car to text Josh that I had “a present for him” when he got there.
I think there was some disbelief in his eyes that it actually was his ring when I handed it back – There wouldn’t be that many square titanium rings lying around 🙂
Hugs from his mum and handshakes from Josh and they headed off to enjoy the last day or so of their holiday up here.

Ring Lost in Surf at Whangarei – Found after Four Days

  • from Paihia (New Zealand)
Ring Finder – Ring Recovery Specialist…Lost ring? Lost necklace? Lost keys?… Metal Detector Service – Call ASAP 021 401626
Merryn was having a swim at Whangaumu Bay near Whangarei in New Zealand when she felt her wedding ring slip off the finger. The water was too murky to see it, and it would have buried itself in the fluid sand instantly anyway.
It was with a heavy heart she walked away from it.
Shortly after, Merryn happened across a detecting mate of mine and mentioned it to him. Steve wasn’t able to help as it was a marine recovery – but he knew I could as an experienced ringfinder, and passed on Merryns details.
Four days after the loss, I arrived at Whangaumu with a rough verbal guide as to where it was, to get me started until Merryn was able to get there and pinpoint the spot.
I walked the dry sand above the high tide line looking for evidence of where she had been, and spotted two old towel marks in the sand. Must be the spot and I started work.
After a couple of hours being slapped and dunked by the surf, Merryn arrived and confirmed I was in the right place, but the towel marks weren’t hers! It was pure coincidence or human behaviour unconsciously picking the same spot for whatever reason!
The surf was quite dumpy with a lot of sand flowing down the beach. I told Merryn that in these conditions with the four day head start, odds were getting slim. She had to leave to go to another commitment so after watching anxiously for several minutes, left me to it.
Thirty minutes after she had driven away, I picked up a deep tone. Fanned the sand away with my feet and looked down through the suspended sediment to see the outline of her ring in the deep crater.
I scooped it, switched off the machine and headed straight back to the car to TXT her that her ring was now secured 🙂
This morning, I met with her to hand back her freshly polished ring…
Then promptly headed off to find another one nearby, this one lost in the sea five weeks ago.
That one was also saved and will be reunited with the owner in a couple of weeks. Watch this space 🙂