Sometimes, metal detecting requires some creativity to have an advantage when you’re searching. The best way to do that is to come up with some unconventional methods that the majority of other detectorists don’t do. Here are five of those to get you started:

Dig Three Extra Holes

This is a great tip that can net extra finds. When you have decided that you have been hunting long enough, make yourself dig three more holes. If you’re on a site that has a lot of targets, you will be more focused to make the three that you dig count. If you find a keeper in one of the three holes you dig, start over with three more.

Put Your Detector Down and Pick Up Your Pinpointer

When you find a spot with a deep pocket spill, or a deep bullet spill, it’s fairly likely that there are additional relics to be found there. This is when it might be worth your time to dig out the area (to about a foot and a half or two feet in diameter) and use only your pinpointer to hunt as you go. This method may net you finds that you would otherwise have missed.

Be Willing to Get Dirty

If the weather in your area is unpredictable, then you know how frustrating it can be when there is a 90 percent chance of rain, yet you never see a drop, but you stay inside and miss a day that would’ve been great for hunting. When you’re willing to go out anyway and get rained on and muddy if the weatherman is actually right, you may find some real keepers. Most detectorists, even if they do go out hunting in the rain, aren’t willing to get down and dig in the mud. That makes it a perfect opportunity for you to swoop in and find the treasure. Just be sure that all of your detecting equipment is waterproof.

Ask a Second Time, But Differently

This is a tip that most detectorists rarely do. If you are turned down by a property owner for hunting on their land, but you think that it has potential, try again. While you don’t want to badger anyone, it’s not unreasonable to try again every few months to see if they have changed their mind. It may be as simple as changing the way you approach your request. Let them know that it’s a goal of yours to search their property, or that you will do something for them in return (mow their lawn, trim their trees, etc.), and see if they soften up a bit. They may see your persistence as a good thing and eventually give in.

Track Fruitful Sites and Finds on Google Earth

You won’t find many detectorists taking the time to do this. It’s a great tip for when you are hunting larger properties or neighborhoods. Using Google Earth, mark the spots where you find targets. You can use different notations for sites where you’ve dug interesting finds, valuable finds, nothing or next to nothing – or come up with your own way of differentiating. When you look at your notations, you may find that there are patterns that might not have noticed otherwise. It could show what might be old home sites, roadways, or even battle lines, depending on where you’re hunting and what you find. This will help you focus on areas that are more likely to have the types of finds you are looking for.