Metal Detecting with Holy Thorns and Killer Cows

Most people in the world consider metal detecting to be a rather danger-free hobby. It makes sense really, this view that folks have of our fair hobby. However, I, for one, do not believe that it is not one of the most dangerous of all the hobbies out there! Let me explain….

The first incident took place in the woods, which as you know contains a large amount of nature. As a whole, nature is vindictive and is not real happy with 6’3″, 300 LB lump of a man traipsing around.

The sad thing is that I know how bad nature can be, yet I still joined the rest of the Indiana Dirt Detectives as we searched for a town that once stood in the location. It was a battle to say the least. Being summer, it was overgrown and humid. The entire area was full of predatory plant life and had no other function in its existence than causing humans to lose vital fluids. So after a couple hours of metal detecting we were all battered and bloody but still on the hunt.

Near the end of the day I was walking through a particularly dense patch of vegetation when I stepped on what others call Jesus Thorns. For those that do not know what they are…Jesus Thorns are mutant, terrorist thorns roughly the length of a standard bayonet, only much sharper. I stepped on a patch and a thorn went through the bottom of my shoe, continued through my foot and then back out the top of my shoe. Now my wife Laura states that I have exaggerated the severity of this wound, noting that the thorn actually only pierced the bottom of my foot.

Nonetheless, I said some unholy type words, while dancing around on one foot in an attempt to remove the thorn. As you can imagine, this was quite a sight to behold. My teammates determined that this was the highlight of the hunt and showed genuine concern for my well-being by laughing so hard that they wet themselves.

The second incident ago took place while I was in the company of my Indiana Dirt Detective teammates. We were metal detecting the home of a friend who owned property that was part of an old, long forgotten town. We spent a nice day detecting the area then decided to go into the cow pasture that was occupied by, big surprise, two cows.

Throughout most of my life I have considered cows to be one of the safest and most docile creatures on the planet. After all, what do cows do other than stand around chewing and displaying all the intelligence of breakfast pastries. But I soon learned that like most, they are dangerous and mean.

Some of my colleagues suggest that I brought the cow attack on myself. Admittedly there was a point where I suggested that said cows were nothing more than walking Big Macs. I thought it was funny, but the cows, were out for revenge.

From the moment we stepped into the pasture to metal detect it, the animals were curious. They ambled over, investigating us as we swung our metal detectors. They showed no signs of aggression. We set about our business and continued to pull relics and coins. Then…I was working on a signal, trying to find it in the soil. It is important to note that I was bent over working with my pinpointer. At that time one of said cows decided that my rear end looked tasty and tried to take a big old bite!

I quickly turned around to face my attacker. There she stood, happily chewing and eyeballing my butt. One never knows what they will do when faced with an aggressive cow. All my instincts kicked in and drawing on years of preparing for this moment…I ran away. What else could I do? The creature had at least a ton on me, had glowing red eyes and sharp pointy teeth! Ok, so maybe not but still, getting in a fight with a cow has never been on my bucket list.

At the end of the day I hope you enjoy this little tongue in cheek narrative of mine. While the above events did actually happen (my teammates are still laughing themselves to death over the cow) I do not want to bring fear to anyone. Happy Metal Detecting!


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