Rye Patch Ron

10710239_10204856458642222_3340667657542304741_o (Medium) I started metal detecting in the early 80’s with a White’s coin machine. Having never detected before but having a friend who had one, I wanted to be better and find more than he. So what does a man do?  I bought the highest priced metal detector I could find. After all, it was all I needed to outdo him and dig all those old coins, gold jewelry and relics that I thought was around our area.  As soon as detector arrived, I flipped through the manual had it figured out (so I thought) and was expecting to be rich in no time at all.

After a few long trips with attempts to recovery treasures and trinkets, I ended up going home with buckets of trash in the truck.  I soon realized, this high end super coin detector was smarter than me, as I really had issues trying to make it work properly.  Going back to the manual and re-reading things and trying to digest the words, left me even more perplexed and frustrated.   After all what is Ground Balance and how do I set it properly? The manual never explained it in detail, no pictures, just some Engineering talk. The reality, I had NO IDEA what I was doing. For many trips I had wasted a lot of hours, vacation days and headache, but I eventually find a few good targets here and there.  In reality, it was nothing like I had expected.

Fast forward a few years. I bought my first gold nugget detector and headed for the Idaho hills. I detected everywhere there was no gold but never hunted in areas with gold, so it seemed. My attitude was someone had been there and already found it all and that is why I found so little, NONE. Eventually after no success I gave up the hard hunt for gold except for the weekend here and there.

One rainy day I am surfing on the internet and come across another “Idaho guy” named Gerry in Boise. I read about Gerry and his statement of “buy a metal detector from me and get real field training”.  Gerry knew just about EVERYTHING on detectors, more than I did with his 35+ years of Success and Field Experience. The REALITY was: I knew nothing on how or why one does research, how to set up a detector properly, what signals to listen for and the sounds to ignore.

Some time ago I was very lucky to have met Gerry and get the training from the best. I put all the accumulated knowledge and education into field practice and I mean plenty of swinging detectors in the field for 1000’s of hours of practice while running both Pulse Induction and VLF detectors.  I moved down to Nevada and hunted almost every day for a few years to fine tune my skill.  I’ve learned many detectors since getting the training from Gerry. One point in particular I want share with you. I’ve learned how to make detectors work for me, instead of them working me.

Now, I work with the BEST and most knowledgeable nugget hunters/detector operators in the country. I have recovered 1000+ gold nuggets in ID, NV, OR, AZ, and even AK along with many old collectible coins, relics and some gold jewelry in my 30+ years of detecting. Most of all, I enjoy “the hunt” of metal detecting, sharing detector knowledge and helping other learn to become successful with their detectors.

I also have now worked on Gerry’s Detectors Training Staff for 8 years at this time.



  1. Rob says:

    Hey Ron. Thanks for the great website. I have done some hunting in OR and CA before on vacation with my Makro, but am far from being a full time detectorist.

    I am curious, since your website is actually named after the Rye Patch – what is this area like in 2017? I have read in many other places that it has been pounded hard with VLFs for ages now. What is a typical day out for you? Whether on a VLF or a PI detector?

    I have some vacation time over the next several months and have thought about returning south in the cooler months to try my luck. I have checked the area for titles and can see where the claims sit. So given the fact that I am just hunting open ground the same as others, what kind of result could one expect? I know from lots of reading that NV gold tends to be small. Is 1-2 grams a day possible when you’re out for say 7-8 hours? Not trying to get rich, just curious.

    Maybe I’ll see you out there one day.



    • Rye patch was a great area but it has been hunted very hard for years wit every kind of machine. Most all of it is now under claim even though you might not see it listed that way. Newmont mining has several units leased that people think is open but it really is not. The place where most people camp is such an area. There is still gold to be found but you will have to work hard for it. I live there for a few years and have hunted or trained customers there for Gerry’s Metal Detectors out of Boise. I personally hunt there very little anymore. There are way better areas in Nevada that have not been pounded by everyone. Do some research and find a place that you will have a chance at success. That would be my advice.


      • Rob says:

        Thanks Ron. That is sage advice.

        I figured as much. Also, it’s hard to know what is open exactly. You’re right, the area near the camp site does look open if you look at Land Matters, etc. but you might be on a claim and not know it.

        Thanks again for the great advice.



  2. Rocky Chase says:

    Hi Ron…thanks for the article. After taking Gerry’s class a few years ago and struggling to get time in the field I completely understand the frustration that you mention. Gerry provides great service and the group of you did a great job of teaching us in the field but experience is obviously one of the keys to succes. These fine Minelab tools (GPX 5000 and 705 in my case) are just that….tools in a large box and finding time to get the experience is proving to be the biggest challenge. Thanks for your efforts and Gerry’s in keeping us motivated!



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