We attended the 3rd Annual Catskill Mountains Coin Shoot & Relic Hunt in Big Indian, NY, this past weekend, and I have to give the Nor’easters Metal Detecting Club a good dose of recognition here for putting on such a great event.
There were 19 different sites to hunt, and it was very well organized. Descriptions and photos of the sites (with GPS addresses–thank you) were handed out in a nice booklet, and each site was clearly marked so you were sure you were in the right place.
The best part of having all those sites to hunt, is that if you didn’t like one, or weren’t having much luck, you could just move on to another site. With the hunt being 3 days, and with all those sites, you were bound to find something.
Driving around the Catskills all weekend was surreal. There were abandoned stores and motels lining the main roads, and overgrown mansions and homes could be seen everywhere. Most had grass growing up two feet or higher, some were boarded up, and others were just rotting away in bad states of disrepair.
One of the guys in our club said it looked like “The Land that Time Forgot“, and I think that was a most fitting description for the area. It was as if everyone just decided to leave one day, and left everything as it was right at that moment. If you looked in the windows of the houses at some of the places we hunted, you could see furniture, linens on the tables, dishes on counters, etc… And it wasn’t because someone was coming back to stay on their vacation, these places have been abandoned for years.
It was sad to see what was once the vacation destination of the Northeast reduced to mere ghost towns and memories. But even as you felt this sadness, there was also an underlying excitement about these places, and the anticipation of their detecting potential.
There were a lot of neat finds made over the weekend, and I found a few keepers myself, but for me, this hunt turned out to be mostly a social event. I saw a lot of people I hadn’t seen in a long time, literally years, and I was happy to reconnect and catch up. I can always find a silver dime or a quarter, but who knows when I might see some of these folks again.
I also got to hang out and detect with my guy (he’s such a sport), and a great group of guys from our club that I’ve grown very fond of–there’s definitely no shortage of laughter with any of them around.
In addition to the hunt, there were also a lot of cool giveaways and raffles. My guy won the Minelab Go Find donated by Streeters, and I won a Minelab backpack and a nice Garrett carry bag that will come in handy when I get that AT Pro that I’ve been whining about. So not only did we leave the Catskills with some new memories, we also took home a bunch of cool stuff.
I can’t wait until next year…
Pics from the hunt below