How does one make the distinction between an actual treasure hunter and someone who has decided to treasure hunt. Many might think it is based on what you have previously found or simply a reputation one has earned. As I sat down for my flight back from the Caribbean, the first thing I had to do was calculate the cost of the trip versus the value of the finds. As I went through and tallied the transactions, I made a note to write a post on this very subject when I got back as to me, it is the most important factor.
Whether you are headed out in search of Forrest Fenn’s Treasure, Montezuma’s Gold, or, as in our case, a Galleon that sank in the 1700’s, the odds of finding this single, high value cache is very slim. If you are someone who is simply treasure hunting, the costs associated with your outing can simply be chalked up to a good time when you do not find the treasure you seek. Where as a treasure hunter knows in order to continue to do this over several decades, they must offset the costs. I saw this very subject covered very well in one of Man Alone’s videos sometime back. It might have been on his old channel but if not, maybe he will post a link in the comments below or in the forum.
The idea is, a treasure hunter will familiarize themselves with local knowledge of their search area and artifacts they might find while in search of their main treasure. For example, if I had a solution to Forrest Fenn’s Treasure I was getting ready to execute, before I left, I would spend a few days looking at specific locations in the area Indians would have used in the past.
When Indians set out looking for a place to set their village, they did not simply go until they were tired or look for a great scenery. They had requirements for their camps centered around security and living essentials. They had to have a close water source to ease the burden or hauling water when needed. They preferred to be backed up against a mountain on at least one side so they could only be attacked from one side. They liked to utilize natural shelters and vantage points so they could see visitors coming early. Many times, these vantage points had look out men that would make weapons while they were on duty.
What this boils down to is if your search area has these features in a small geographic area, with a little research and work, you could find artifacts that cover the cost of your trip which then allows you to refine your solution and return. The same principles apply to metal detecting and prospecting as well. Every trip may not pay for it self but you get better each time you make an effort to do so.
In our case, we did not find our Galleon, just more remnants of the debris field. But because we researched a few things before we went, we were able to recover 29% of our costs. This allows us to treasure hunt more efficiently and essentially make more trips.
A treasure hunters is in it for the long haul, multiple trips, multiple treasures. Someone that is “treasure hunting” does not factor these things in and will eventually give up the hobby if they can not locate their big cache soon. I would encourage all of you who are treasure hunting to do a little additional research before you go out and consider the treasures you are “stepping over.” These little treasure might pay for your whole trip.