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Gary Drayton

Gary Drayton beach metal detecting with Minelab Sovereign GT metal detector

Gary Drayton is a successful beach and shallow water treasure hunter from sunny South Florida. Over many years spent searching Florida beaches with his trusty Minelab Sovereign GT metal detector, Gary has managed to do what many other beach hunters cannot do, to find Spanish treasure coins and artifacts on a consistent basis. Spanish treasure finds that have made him one of the most successful and well known beach treasure hunters in Florida.

He is also an author with three popular books on the Florida metal detecting scene called Metal detecting for Spanish treasure, The shallow water hunter’s guide to South Florida and The ultimate Sovereign beach hunter’s guide. Gary's books are available from his metal detecting website.

The Ultimate Sovereign Beach Hunter's Guide by Gary Drayton for beach metal detecting

Gary’s most famous find is the magnificent Spanish 1715 fleet emerald treasure ring that he found on the beach opposite the wreck site of the Spanish galleon “Nuestra senora de las nieves.” which wrecked on July 31st 1715 during the hurricane that destroyed the Spanish treasure fleet. The treasure ring is made from 22.5 karat Inca gold and set with nine near flawless Colombian emeralds, it is considered to be the prettiest Spanish treasure ring ever found in the US.

Spanish treasure ring found beach metal detecting by Gary Drayton

Gary credits beach hunting skills and his two favorite metal detectors, the Minelab Sovereign GT and Minelab Excalibur to his beach and water hunting success.


Metal Detecting Adventures on the Infamous Oak Island

August 14, 2015 03:17pm

In 2014 I was honoured to be invited to help the owners of Oak Island (located in Nova Scotia, Canada) in their quest to solve the mystery of the famous “Money Pit”.

For those who do not know the story, Oak Island is rumoured to have buried pirate treasure hidden in a mine shaft with an elaborate booby-trapped flooding system to prevent people from recovering the treasure.

Posted by Gary Drayton on August 14, 2015 03:17pm | 0 Comments

GO-FIND Some Treasure at the Beach!

June 15, 2015 06:46pm

Family time at the beach is a lot more fun for the Drayton’s, thanks to the new GO-FIND Series of detectors from Minelab. It was always a little awkward, going to the beach and bringing along my metal detector, treasure hunting alone, while my wife and daughters did their own thing. Finally we have a metal detector that our whole family can use and join in the treasure hunting fun.

Posted by Gary Drayton on June 15, 2015 06:46pm | 3 Comments

Modes to Find the Deep Gold

September 15, 2014 02:21pm

Just in case you have not heard the news yet, the versatile waterproof CTX 3030 is more than just a master of discrimination on the beach and in the shallow water.

Posted by Gary Drayton on September 15, 2014 02:21pm | 3 Comments

Beach Hunting with the SDC 2300

July 30, 2014 04:36am

Because I am a beach and shallow water hunter, I was happy to hear the news that Minelab had introduced another new waterproof metal detector. After doing the hard part of convincing my lovely wife that I really needed an SDC 2300, it was off to the beach for some testing.

Posted by Gary Drayton on July 30, 2014 04:36am | 1 Comment

Finding small gold jewelry on the beach with the Minelab CTX 3030

March 15, 2013 03:46pm

I can boldly say the CTX 3030 is the most sensitive metal detector I have ever used for gold jewelry hunting on the beach and this awesome metal detector has changed my approach to finding smaller items of gold jewelry on the beach.

Posted by Gary Drayton on March 15, 2013 03:46pm | 4 Comments

CTX 3030 Seawater setting

January 25, 2013 10:55am

The CTX 3030 Beach mode and Seawater setting is a really good combination of options for a shallow water hunter that likes to work the trough or first drop off in the water. This is the area in the water where sands are constantly shifting and waves roll up onto the beach, it is also the area that makes the CTX 3030 such an effective gold jewelry hunter.

Posted by Gary Drayton on January 25, 2013 10:55am | 5 Comments

Shallow water hunting accessories

October 26, 2012 12:00pm

In this blog I will explain a few accessories that will compliment your CTX 3030 and make shallow water hunting much easier, starting with water hunting apparel.

I personally like to wear a wet suit when shallow water hunting for safety and comfort. Wet suits come in different styles from ‘shorties’ that just cover the torso with short sleeves and legs, to full suits covering the whole body. The thickness of the wet suit required will depend on the temperature of the water that you intend to search.

Posted by Gary Drayton on October 26, 2012 12:00pm | 2 Comments

Understanding the Sovereign GT - basic to advanced settings - Part 2

August 29, 2012 11:15am

Most people metal detect at the same sites on a regular basis, for a beach hunter that means discovering which level of manual sensitivity suits certain sites and adjusting the sensitivity control accordingly. Do not worry about setting the sensitivity too high, I assure you that your Sovereign GT will tell you if you have the sensitivity set too high. When making the transition from the beginner Sovereign user phase to the advanced Sovereign user the best manual sensitivity level is the one that produces the least amount of false signals.

Posted by Gary Drayton on August 29, 2012 11:15am | 0 Comments

Basic CTX 3030 shallow water hunting tips

July 19, 2012 04:00pm

Here are a few basic tips to help you get the best out of your CTX 3030 when treasure hunting in the shallow water. Before venturing into the shallow water to metal detect, I suggest that you first learn how to use your CTX 3030 on the beach and become comfortable using the CTX 3030 in the basic preset beach mode.

Posted by Gary Drayton on July 19, 2012 04:00pm | 12 Comments

Beach hunting with the CTX 3030 - Part 3

July 06, 2012 11:00am

A beach and shallow water hunter sometimes has to pick their battles to win the war on beaches with a high amount of trash. When metal detecting time is limited or when searching on a really trash laden beach I have found that discrimination is one of the keys to beach hunting success. Fortunately for beach hunters when you need to use discrimination, the CTX 3030 has discrimination down to a science.

Posted by Gary Drayton on July 06, 2012 11:00am | 0 Comments
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