Metal Detecting in New Hampshire: A Complete Guide for 2022

Are you looking for a site in New Hampshire to begin your metal detecting adventure? You’ve come to the right place.

Metal detecting is a hobby in which you go on an expedition and use a metal detector to seek anything from jewelry and coins to historical items. This activity has been around for a long time. When people discovered that metal detecting might make them a lot of money, it sprang onto the scene. Metal detectorists are always on the hunt for and discover rare metals like gold and silver, which they then sell for a profit. A high-end metal detector costs around $1000, and if you know where to look, you may recoup your investment in as few as three metal detecting trips.

Metal detecting is as good as it gets in New Hampshire, which is one of the few regions in the United States where it is. The weather is great for metal detecting, and the landscape is ideal for gold and silver prospecting. If you want to go metal detecting on beaches, rivers, streams, creeks, ghost towns, or state parks, New Hampshire offers it all. You should, however, conduct your research and get familiar with The Granite State’s local and federal metal detecting legislation.

Metal detecting laws in New Hampshire

Despite the fact that metal detecting is seen as a recreational activity, we cannot rule out the possibility of unearthing something of historical value to the government. As a result, metal detecting rules and regulations vary per state.

Metal detecting criteria and restrictions have been set in New Hampshire. Metal detecting on government territory is likewise governed by the Archeological Resources Preservation Act.

Always remember that private property is immune from state and federal laws. They only apply to metal detecting on state or federal land. To metal detect on private property, you only need a written permission from the proprietor or tenant.

The rules for metal detecting in New Hampshire are rather simple. Make certain that you are not metal detecting in any historically significant areas of New Hampshire. As a result, employing metal detectors or excavating for artifacts on any New Hampshire historical monument is illegal. As a result, exercise extreme caution when digging native mounds, burial sites, or earthworks.

Metal detectors are also banned on Trust’s property without permission, according to New Hampshire law. Furthermore, because all historic and prehistoric sites in the Forest Preserves are held by the State of New Hampshire, they may not be demolished without permission. Unless you have valid authorization, metal detecting is prohibited in numerous regions.

Don’t dig up anything that appears like an artifact or is more than 100 years old if you’re metal detecting in New Hampshire on state or federal territory. Notify authorities if you discover and collect a historical relic so that it can be properly cared for. Metal detecting is also forbidden in New Hampshire National Parks unless prior permission has been obtained. Moreover, metal detecting, on the other hand, is legal as a recreational activity in New Hampshire’s public parks. Metal detecting may be permitted in historically significant areas, although this is quite unusual.

Overall, while metal detecting in New Hampshire, it is critical to understand and observe the restrictions. Infringing on these restrictions will result in serious consequences such as fines or, in the worst-case scenario, jail time. If you’re looking for a new metal detecting location in New Hampshire, make sure you satisfy all of the requirements by contacting local, county, and state officials.

Related: Dumpster Diving in New Hampshire: A Comprehensive Guide

Is it legal to metal detect in New Hampshire?

Metal detecting is completely legal in New Hampshire. Legality, on the other hand, has bounds. Metal detecting without a permit is forbidden in New Hampshire’s historic sites, state parks, and federal regions, as previously stated. As a result, metal detecting on New Hampshire’s public lands may necessitate permission. Permits can be obtained over the phone or online. Please contact your local park and recreation office to obtain one. It is inexpensive, with a single unit costing roughly $10.

You’ll be OK if you use common sense and look for jewelry, coins, and gold nuggets in public places throughout New Hampshire. Check with the local county office before metal detecting in a historically significant region.

Can you metal detect on BLM Land in New Hampshire?

Metal detecting on BLM land is subject to the same limitations as it is on all other New Hampshire public lands. Metal detecting is permitted on BLM land in New Hampshire, but you must be careful not to harm or expose any artifacts. Remember that the government, according to ARPA, has the authority to take any “archaeological riches” uncovered on BLM land. Archaeological resources are tangible objects from human life or activities with archaeological importance and are at least 100 years old.

Where can you metal detect in New Hampshire?

Despite the fact that many traditional metal-detecting locations in New Hampshire have been prohibited, there are still a few great metal-detecting spots.

If you live in New Hampshire, one of the first places you should go metal detecting is your hometown. Knowing a region’s history not only saves time but also assists in the finding of rare items. What you find and how valuable it is, will depend on where you metal detect and the location’s history. Metal detecting based on historical research will yield better results on average than detecting in random sites.

Some of the best places you can go for metal detecting in New Hampshire are:

  1. Abandoned Buildings and Structures
  2. Abandoned Parks and Mines
  3. Old wagon train routes and Ghost Towns
  4. Native American Trails
  5. Natural Disaster Destruction Sites
  6. New Hampshire Beaches, Rivers, Lakes, and Creeks
  7. School yards and Old Churches
  8. Civil war sites

Is there any buried treasure in New Hampshire?

New Hampshire is a beautiful state with a fascinating history. New Hampshire is reported to hold a number of Civil War-era buried treasures. Confederate gold and silver coins are claimed to be buried beneath New Hampshire’s soil to evade recovery by the Union Army. Some wait in the shadows to be discovered! Despite the fact that many of these claims have yet to be verified, treasure hunters and metal detectorists are optimistic that they will be discovered soon.

The Seabrook TreasuresThe Seabrook beaches, some 14 miles south of Portsmouth, have been found to contain 1700s English and Spanish coins. The coins were probably washed up on the shore by shipwrecks.
The Isle of Shoals TreasureThe Isle of Shoals is a series of seven islands that may contain valuables buried by the Spanish in 1813. The Islands are around 10 miles southeast of Portsmouth.
The John Quelch Pirate LootThe pirate John Quelch is said to have buried nine pounds of gold and 190 pounds of silver on the west side of Appledore Island.
The John Cromwell TreasureThe John Cromwell treasure is a legend about an Indian merchant of the same name who allegedly hid a great treasure at his trading station. The post was located on the Merrimack River’s west bank, near Merrimack, about two miles north of Cromwell Falls.

Metal detecting on New Hampshire Beaches

New Hampshire’s coastline is roughly 18 miles long along the Atlantic Ocean. Because New Hampshire’s beaches are so popular, they’re ideal for searching for misplaced jewelry and money. As a result, you’ll encounter many more metal detectorists on New Hampshire beaches late at night for their metal detecting experience.

As of the publication of this article, metal detecting is legal on New Hampshire beaches. New Hampshire, on the other hand, has the capability of removing anything older than 100 years.

Some of the most famous beaches to go for metal detecting in New Hampshire are:

  1. Hampton Beach State Park, Hampton
  2. Weirs Beach, Laconia
  3. Wallis Sands State Beach, Rye
  4. Jenness Beach, Rye
  5. Ellacoya State Park Beach, Gilford

Metal detecting in New Hampshire Rivers and Creeks

New Hampshire not only has a scenic coastline, but it also has several rivers and streams. It’s a great place to do metal detecting because there are so many rivers, creeks, and streams. Make sure you have adequate waterproof metal detectors while detecting in rivers and streams. Among New Hampshire’s best metal detecting rivers and streams are:

  1. Ammonoosuc River, Coos
  2. Baker River, Grafton
  3. Bearcamp River, Carroll
  4. Blackwater River, Merrimack
  5. Beech Hill Brook, Rockingham
  6. Cocheco River, Strafford

Metal detecting in Ghost Towns of New Hampshire

The New Hampshire landscape is littered with hundreds of abandoned villages and ghost towns. These are the towns where mining used to take place, but people left when the ore ran out. For a number of reasons, people flocked to other cities and towns.

All of the villages and towns of New Hampshire’s ghost towns have been abandoned. These New Hampshire towns have a lengthy and illustrious history. Metal detecting in New Hampshire’s ghost towns may also necessitate municipal approval. After determining if you need a permit and obtaining one, New Hampshire’s ghost towns will quickly become one of your favorite metal detecting places.

These ghost towns may include historical artifacts. Coins, exquisite jewelry, and other valuables abound in these New Hampshire ghost towns.

Some of the popular ghost towns in New Hampshire for metal detecting are:

  1. Hill, New Hampshire
  2. Livermore, Grafton
  3. Monson Center, Hillsborough
  4. Roxbury, Cheshire

Metal detecting clubs in New Hampshire

Metal detecting is one of my favorite pastimes in New Hampshire since it allows me to reconnect with old friends while also creating new ones. I definitely recommend joining a metal detecting group in New Hampshire if you want to meet new people and go on metal detecting trips with them.

Metal detecting has been increasingly popular in recent years, with clubs cropping up all across the country. Members of the club are involved and supportive of one another. These groups meet once a month to show off their discoveries, plan their next trip, and discuss how to assess the diversity and value of their finds.

Metal detecting groups might be a great way to learn about new treasure-seeking places. Setting up your metal detector for a specific location might be difficult if you’re a newbie. As a result, joining a metal detecting club is an ideal way to handle this issue.

There are several amazing metal detecting organizations in New Hampshire. Metal detecting clubs in New Hampshire may help you improve your skills whether you’re a beginner or a seasoned hunter.

Metal detecting clubs in New Hampshire do not need to have an internet presence. As a result, you may want to join Facebook groups to network with other New Hampshire metal detectorists and share your knowledge.

Some of the best Metal detecting clubs in New Hampshire are:

  1. Granite State Treasure Hunter’s Club, Epsom
  2. Professional Treasure Hunters Historical Society, Keene
  3. Capital Mineral Club, Laudon
  4. Recreational Detecting & Prospecting Club, Concord

Similarly, some of the most popular Metal Detecting Facebook groups in New Hampshire are:

  1. NH Metal Detecting
  2. Metal Detecting Group for NH residents
  3. New England Metal Detecting
  4. Metal Detecting Finds and Advice

Final Thoughts

Overall, New Hampshire is an excellent place for your metal detecting needs. Nature, history, weather, and New Hampshire’s permissive legislation all contribute to the enjoyment of this activity. Make sure you’re familiar with New Hampshire’s metal detecting regulations before attempting it in public. If you’re going to private property, be sure you get permission from the owner first; otherwise, you might be punished with trespassing.