My Secrets to Seaglass Hunting

The thrill of the hunt. The moment of pure excitement when you pluck a large frosted powder blue piece of glass, tossed by the sea, from its resting place amongst the sand and creeping waves. Being close to the ocean is in my blood, some of my favorite memories are with my Mom and brother, where we would spend hours climbing the rock walls, wading in the tide pools and searching the sand for treasures. My mother always fed our sense of adventure, and thus created an adult who still loves to comb the beach.

My friends and I here in Maine, love to seaglunk. We frequently spend our precious weekends by the sea digging for marbles, pottery and perfectly tumbled glass. So, blog friends, I thought I would share some of my coveted secrets – but not too many!


(se-glunk, v. seaglank; seaglunking; seaglunks; n. seaglunker)  

– to seek out or search for seaglass or pottery on seashores or riverbanks

My first nugget of wisdom is to consider the off-season. Here in Maine, tourists pack the beaches from Memorial Day right up to Labor Day (or longer). A lot of folks come from out of state and summer here – I can’t blame them! So summer is a time when a lot of people are on the beach and is not ideal for a good seaglass haul. The ideal time is winter and early spring. This winter was quite mild (the beaches were also deserted), which gave my friends and I a great opportunity to throw on a scarf and shades, then hit the coast!

The exact moment of low tide is my most favorite time to go hunt. Low tide reveals certain rocks and areas which would otherwise be completely underwater. These crevices are the perfect spot for finding glass pieces. This time of day provides the most open shore and plenty of space to hunt. When planning an adventure, I typically consult a handy online tide chart to get the exact time of low tide, as it changes each day.

A great hiding place for sea treasures is in the collection of pebbles/rocks
which form on the beach at low tide
– these are closest to the berm crest in the backshore. There is a common misnomer seaglass or marbles will just lay on top of the sand. Yes, some pieces do, however sometimes you’ve just got to dig! I will find a large thin rock and use that to drudge up rocks and sand. My most favorite pieces have come from underneath!

lately I have become very choosy in my selection. If a piece is not fully rounded/frosted, I throw it back to the ocean. Seaglass and seamarbles can take up to ten years to get frosted to perfection, so if I find a piece that isn’t quite ready, I give her back to the ocean. I know it will come back to the shore and become a lovely keepsake for me or someone else.

Lastly, try various beaches and locations. If you hear about a fruitful spot, go check it out. My friends and I have a secret locale, which we do not share with anyone. Due to the popularity of seaglass hunting, spots can become over-plucked and lose their allure. Enjoy your spot and keep it precious!

Happy hunting!

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