Metal Detecting in Wyoming: A Complete Guide for 2022

If you are searching for a comprehensive guide for your next metal detecting quest in Wyoming, you’ve come to the right spot.

When it comes to treasure hunting and metal detecting, Wyoming is one of the top places in the world. The weather is ideal for metal detecting, and the area is rich with gold and undiscovered riches. The adventure is fascinating, and you never know if you’ll detect jewelry, coins, artifacts from the Civil War, or even gold nuggets. However, it’s critical to do your homework and learn about the state and federal rules governing metal detecting in the Cowboy state.

Metal detecting laws in Wyoming

Like every other state, metal detecting in Wyoming has its own set of laws and regulations.

Metal detecting laws in Wyoming are really straightforward. The Archaelogical Resources Protection Act (ARPA) is responsible for regulating the metal detecting activities in the state. According to this act, it is prohibited to metal detect in national parks, national monument, or any recreational area without authorized permits. Furthermore, it is also illegal to remove artifacts while metal detecting in lands and waters under the jurisdiction of Beaureu of Reclaimation.

The first thing to keep in mind while metal detecting in Wyoming is that you must not metal detect on any of the historical grounds in Wyoming. This means metal detecting on any public lands with a significant history associated with it is strictly prohibited. Therefore, think twice before performing any excavation works into aboriginal mounds, burial sites, or earthworks.

Moreover, it is completely to metal detect on forests and on trails with permits. Sometimes you may get lucky and get permission to detect metal in these places but it is sporadic.

It seems like a lot of areas are prohibited from metal detecting, however, it’s far from that. Once you understand the laws, you can better interpret them and find your way around them.

As a responsible metal detectorist, you will also need to understand the law regarding private properties. Since most of the land in Wyoming is considered private property, you will need the landowner’s permission to detect or dig treasure.

All in all, it is crucial to understand the laws and follow them while metal detecting in Wyoming. Breaking these laws will have serious repercussions including fines or at worst jail time. Therefore, if you are planning to detect in the new location in Wyoming, contacting the city, county, and state officials to ensure you’re following all pertinent laws is a good idea.

Related: Dumpster Diving in Wyoming: A Comprehensive Guide

Is it legal to metal detect in Wyoming?

Yes, metal detecting is legal in Wyoming. The legalities, however, have limitations. It is unlawful to go metal detecting in Wyoming’s historic sites, state parks, and federal grounds without the consent of the park manager or the appropriate authority.

Also bear in mind, that metal detecting on Trust’s land is also illegal in Wyoming without the authorized permit.

Where can you metal detect in Wyoming?

Even though the laws of Wyoming have prohibited some of the best metal detecting spots in the state, there is no shortage of other great places you can go for metal detecting.

One of the first places to go for metal detecting in Wyoming is your hometown. Understanding the history of the location will not only save you time but also give you a chance to hunt for great treasure.

The places you choose to metal detect and the history of the place will define what you’ll find and how much value it holds. All in all, metal detecting with historical research will yield better returns compared to detecting on random lands.

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

  1. Abandoned Buildings and Structures
  2. Abandoned Parks
  3. Old wagon train routes
  4. Trails
  5. Natural Disaster Destruction Sites
  6. Wyoming Beaches, Rivers, Lakes, and Creeks
  7. School yards
  8. Ghost towns

Metal detecting in Wyoming Rivers

Wyoming is rich in rivers and creeks as well as streams and lakes. It is an excellent site to go metal detecting because it has multiple rivers, creeks, and streams. When detecting in rivers and streams, make sure you have adequate waterproof metal detectors. In Wyoming, some of the best rivers for metal detecting are:

  1. Beef Steer Creek, Sweetwater County
  2. Bechler River, Teton County
  3. Currant Creek, West Fork, Sweetwater County
  4. Falls River, Teton County
  5. Gardiner River, Park County
  6. Gibbon River, Yellowstone National Park

Metal detecting in Ghost Towns of Wyoming

Hundreds of ghost towns can be found in Wyoming. These are the towns where mining used to be done and the residents simply abandoned it when the ore ran out. There are countless other old cities where residents have left for a variety of reasons.

All of these small, abandoned villages and cities in Wyoming are called ghost towns. These villages add to Wyoming’s fascinating heritage. Keep in mind that metal detecting in Wyoming’s ghost towns may require permission from local officials. Ghost towns in Wyoming will undoubtedly become one of your favorite metal detecting destinations once you determine whether you require a permit and obtain one if necessary.

You may find various historical artifacts in these ghost towns. Furthermore, finding a coin spill, fine jewelry, or other expensive items in these ghost towns of Wyoming is not unusual.

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

  1. Atlantic City, Fremont
  2. Kane, Big Horn
  3. Fort Bridget, Uinta
  4. Tubb Town, Weston
  5. Winchester, Hot Springs

Metal detecting clubs in Wyoming

Metal detecting is one of my favorite hobbies since it allows me to reconnect with old friends while also making new ones. I highly recommend joining a metal detecting club in Wyoming if you want to make new friends and go on a metal detecting adventure with them.

Metal detecting groups may provide you with a wealth of information and assist you in finding new places to detect. You’ll probably have trouble adjusting your metal detector for a specific area as a beginner. Joining a metal detecting club is a good way to deal with this problem.

Wyoming does not have any shortage of great metal detecting clubs. Whether you are a beginner or a veteran metal detectorist, metal detecting clubs in Wyoming can help you enhance your skills.

Metal detecting clubs do not have to be online. Facebook groups are a great way to connect with fellow Wyoming Metal Detectorists and share your knowledge and skills. 

Some of the best Metal detecting clubs in Wyoming are:

  1. Wyoming Prospectors Association
  2. Rocky Mountains Prosectors LLC

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

  1. Metal Detecting Group
  2. Casper Wyoming Group Metal Detect
  3. Metal Detector Finds and for Sale
  4. Group for Metal Detecting Finds

Final Thoughts

Overall, Wyoming is an excellent spot to satisfy your metal detecting needs. Wyoming’s natural beauty, history, weather, and relaxed rules make this a fun sport. Just make sure you’re familiar with Wyoming’s metal detecting regulations before attempting it in public. If you’re on private property, be sure you obtain the landowner’s permission first, otherwise, you could face trespassing charges.