When you are on a ‘run’

Metal Detectorist - Julian Evan-HartA ‘Run’ is what my colleagues and I would describe as one of those metal detecting days where you just keep finding. Sometimes others may do nearly as well as you but in my experience its usually just one of us that has a run at the one time. Sometimes it starts as soon as you arrive on site, with a good find happening almost immediately. This seems to spur you on and produce much positive thought, which in turn appears to attract further good finds.

Now, runs are quite rare and, as a result, most of my fellow detectorists can remember them distinctly. For example, one run I recall resulted in the uncovering of a Celtic Dragonesque brooch, a huge Roman hairpin, a bronze Celtic unit and then a gold one. All of these finds took place in the space of half an hour. Interestingly, whilst I was having all that success, that day my mates didn’t find much of note at all.

Sometimes the run may be spread out and last all day – such as when I found six hammered, two Saxon Sceats a Roman ring and around 60 Roman coins over a period of nine hours. Although it might sound a bit tenuous, when your colleagues come over, see your stuff and go ‘wow,’ this in turn seems to make you a magnet for finds. When I experienced that longer run, again my mates’ finds weren’t too bad, but not in the same league as what I was uncovering.

The key I believe to attracting a run (if such a thing is possible) is be positive, keen and enthusiastic about where you are searching. There are no rules of course, as luck and fate are big players in whether you will uncover anything at all. However, in my experience, runs never occur when someone really can’t be bothered, feels a bit under the weather or, for some strange reason, doesn’t really want to be out detecting that day.

Of course the trouble is that when a colleague is experiencing a run it can either make everyone else really enthusiastic or be a tad annoying. You might well hear mutterings of “Crikey is he gonna leave anything for us, he has all the damned luck doesn’t he?” However, as we have also found out, as one gets older that competitiveness tends to dim and it’s quite simply a pleasure to see good stuff – whoever found it.

Fortunately incidents like these seem to have been well distributed amongst me and my colleagues. In terms of working out why runs occur – and how they seem to be limited to only one person at a time – well, I’m not sure. However, they certainly provide the basis for many often repeated tales down the pub on long dark winter evenings, making us all look forward to the next one.

Just a quick note to whoever, whatever makes a run occur: I am slightly overdue for another…(undoubtedly just like everyone else).

About Julian Evan-Hart
Julian is from Hertfordshire, England and has always been interested in fossils and antiquities. Julian has written a number of books on metal detecting, and is an avid user of Minelab products.

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