Hunting for treasure at Hoyt's Landing, Windsor Beach
Hoyts Landing in Springfield, Vermont is a great place to go boating and metal detecting. (Darla Sterett photos)
This metal detecting hobby of mine is really becoming an obsession.
The more I do it, the more I want to do it. Even the meager rewards I've enjoyed so far have only fueled the obsession.
Normally when I treasure hunt, I will confine the search to a single location mapped out in advance: a swimming hole, open field, or lake beachfront, for example. However, on a recent Saturday in Vermont I was able to fit in two venues -- Hoyts Landing in Springfield, and Windsor Beach in Windsor.
Hoyts Landing is an active recreational boat ramp situated along the Connecticut River. When I arrived at the boat ramp around 3 p.m., the weather was hotter than the steel cover on a BBQ grill and the river filled with motor boats that created waves in rapid succession each time they passed by.
As I scanned my surroundings I noticed a muddy trail leading off into a swamp that I thought would be a good place to start metal detecting -- and it was.
Right off the bat my Garrett Ace 250 signaled the presence of a solid object, about three inches down in the mud.
The object was round, made out of hard lead, and looked and felt like a musket ball in my hand. (A park ranger at Wilgus State Park, in Windsor, later informed me the object was a very old crimped fishing weight. There was no telling how long it had been in the mud.)
At first I thought this old fishing weight was a musket ball.
A quick sweep along the sandy edges of the parking area at Hoyts Landing turned up several coins and pieces of fishing tackle. I had to quit searching around 5 p.m. because it was just too hot outside and mild dehydration was starting to set in.
Windsor Beach, however, had a cool breeze going but the place was an absolute bust for treasure. All I found were these strange bullet-shaped fishing sinkers buried in the sand.
At 7 p.m., I called it a day, but what a day it had been -- sun, fun, and a swelling piggy bank at home.