Imagine the rush of finding something shiny in the sand. Maybe a ring or a nice watch.
Next, take that feeling and amplify it by a thousand. That’s what these people felt when they stumbled across these desert treasures. There’s everything from gold bars to a luxury store in the middle of nowhere.
Also known as Great Sand Sea glass, this rich-yellow stone is one of the rarest minerals on earth and can only be found in Egypt.
One large chunk was found carved into a scarab and set in a necklace within King Tut’s tomb. Scientists aren’t sure how it was formed, but a popular idea is a meteor strike.
Deep underground, mineworkers found an 800-pound emerald!
The owner of the mined ended up having to hire an armed guard to protect it because a dangerous gang tried to break in and steal it. It goes without saying that the worker that discovered it never had to dig again.
When the gaming industry crashed in 1983, the famous company was stuck with thousands of E.T. games.
The problem was the game was so bad that they ended up tossing them in a dump. Years later, hard-core console fans tracked down the site. The games ended up selling for good money.
It isn’t only old men and treasure hunting enthusiasts that use metal detectors.
The army also uses their own souped-up versions to scavenge for dangerous weapons or supplies that go missing during war. One American troop wasn’t ready for this metal graveyard….
Like huge metal tombstones, a row of 30 Iraqi planes was uncovered.
The main theory was that the pilots abandoned their planes when they knew they were going to be outmatched. They just left them there. Needless to say, the U.S. Army was excited.
Soldier Scott Taylor found a massive pile of gold bricks and Civil War-era rifles (and some dynamite on top of it, yikes!).
But when the government told him to reveal the location, Scott refused. The site of the “Delta Treasure” is still unknown today. Somewhere, there’s over 100 million waiting to be found.
Dubai is famous for riches and excess. A luxury sports car is worth pennies to some moguls.
Local authorities weren’t surprised when they found a Ferrari in the middle of nowhere, half-buried in the sand. There were rumors that someone was running from the law. It took a large news story for anyone to do anything about it.
An Austrian artist came up with the unique idea of putting a VIP swimming pool in the middle of the Mojave Desert.
The water is always fresh and cold, which is perfect for the burning temperatures. Anyone can swim there, but they have to find it first. There are no landmarks or Google Map clues.
In the Texas barrens, there’s a Prada store that is unlike any other.
It’s not a place you can buy anything though. The art installation is intended to decay with time and fade into its surroundings. It was broken into two days after opening, but they fixed it to be more secure. Even Beyoncé has visited.
After the big-budget film ended, the production crew disassembled the many sets and then buried them in the desert.
Why? Who knows, but years later the winds uncovered a large sphinx head. Santa Barbara decided to excavate it like an ancient Egyptian dig site. It would find its way to a movie museum.
Thomas Smith was a famous American mountain man. But he wasn’t just renowned for his grit and limp.
A nameless prospector claimed to find Smith’s black gold stash (worth 3 million today). However, with Peg Leg’s notorious character of drinking and lying, it’s hard to know the truth.
A Chinese billionaire decided to hide 6% of the world’s aluminum supply (yes, you read that right) in an undisclosed location somewhere in the Mexican desert so he could avoid tariffs.
A U.S. executive chartered a plane to fly over and get proof. That’s a lot of soda cans.
After a pipeline oil spill, Shell quickly and quietly sold off the rights to everything incriminating and then went deep into the desert to bury the implicating documents.
But when they were found by some unsuspecting wanderers, the naughty company had to “shell” out a ton of cash in fines and litigation costs.
Archeologist, Jerry Freeman found a chest filled with California Gold Rush artifacts.
There were gold and silver coins, a pistol, pottery, and a letter from the owner. It might have been worth half a million but the historical value is priceless.
Yes, most people on Earth have heard about the famous scrolls.
However, there’s a special copper one that is so different from the rest (in author, script, and style) that some believe it was placed in the Qumran caves at a different time. Oh, and it’s a treasure map with 64 locations.
While many of these stories have been about finding riches, The Hand of The Desert is something anyone can savor.
The Chilean sculptor was obsessed with hands. When he was commissioned to make something, the endless stretch of Atacama finally got a landmark that wasn’t a rock or pile of salt.