The White River in Hartford gives up some of her treasure.
So many places left to search for treasure, so little time. Yet slow moving rivers present some of the greatest challenges in metal detecting.
They're mucky, hard to see through, and therefore unpredictable, and filled with trash and corroded iron shards from bygone years. Which means you'll be wasting a lot of time and energy digging in the sandy or rocky bottom and pulling up nothing but garbage.
But these rivers can also be a great source of old relics, and lost fishing tackle, and coins dropped and just waiting to be found.
On a recent Saturday I spent a couple of hours metal detecting along a stretch of the White River that runs behind and past the Watson Upper Valley Dog park in Hartford, Vermont. A short, narrow path takes you directly to the water's edge.
The water that day was warm, and the river bottom was soft in some areas, full of stones in others. The stones seemed to pierce straight through the soles of my thin water moccasins. Painful.
But after about an hour of sleuthing around I managed to dredge up an interesting bottle cap, a fishing spinner, safety pin, rusty chain link, and three coins -- 36 cents worth.
It's not much, but it's something.
It may not seem like much now, but the coins that I've found on treasure hunts this summer are beginning to add up to real money.