It is actually a common question to ask about the “average depth of a buried Yamashita treasure” especially for the amateur THs (treasure hunters).

I know that giving an estimate depth in your projects can boosts your motivations but this really requires a lot of analysis by relying to all the clues you found on your site. This is the reason why I often respond to those who are asking estimate depths that “they need to find more signs or clues”.


Honestly, there is no “Average” or “Standard” depth on how the JIA (Japanese Imperial Army) buried their treasures. But based on experience, the depth usually ranges between “3 ft down to 80 ft”.

Reasons Why the Depths of Buried Treasure Varies

There are actually several reasons why the JIA buried their treasures at some random depths.

Here are some of the possible reasons why:

1. Numbers of Soldiers and Slaves

When the Allied Forces (Combined Filipino and American soldiers) finally attacked the JIA, the Japanese army retreated hiding themselves for cover on remote places such as in the dense forest of the mountains. Most of them also got separated from their group. Thus, there were groups consisting of only few soldiers while others consisted more.

Those smaller group most likely hid their treasures at shallow depths because they lack manpower. But as for those larger groups, they were the once who dug extremely deep tunnels and holes. Some even had slaves that helped them dug.

2. Hot Pursuit

The Allied forces were actually in “hot pursuit” against the JIA. Despite the aggressiveness of the Allied Forces, the JIA still refused to surrender because they were given strict orders by their superiors to hid all treasures in their possessions as their primary objectives.

Since the JIA were hardly pursued by the Allied Forces, they do not have enough time to stay on one certain specific location. Due to this reason, they simply dug shallow holes ranging between 3 to 15 feet only. Some of them even simply inserted small pieces of gold bars into the holes of trees or rocks that they passed.

3. Clever Japanese Soldiers

There were some clever JIA soldiers who managed to outsmart the Allied Forces by finding themselves safe hidden shelters. One among them was the Japanese Military General himself, Gen. Tomoyuki Yamashita. As a result, they were able to dig deep complicated tunnels for their hidden treasures.

55 Comments to “Average Depth of a Buried Yamashita Treasure”

    • Hello Sir, can I ask how many feet to dig in before I found the target? The sign is an old coconut tree in triangular shape the one tree pierced by a big nail. We are more than 20 ft. We found this shells, and a dry see weeds. Thank you.

      Ms. Chi

      • That is a positive spot, you’re on the right direction but one thing for sure you must hit the zero spot because the Japs when they dig it candied a large area ex: 5 square meters or more depends on the men working and the volume of items to be hidden. When they closed the hole they place some sort of materials harder than cement covering the entire area of the hole therefore it is assumed that if you find some leaves or whatsoever it doesn’t mean that you hit the exact spot the item was buried.

        • Thank you for the reply Sir Ronald.

          We are now 90ft deep. 30ft down to 90ft. The wall of the hole already covered of cement. We already broke the 2 cement cover. but still no sign of gold.

          The only sign that we have are sand, sea shell, a charcoal, a rotten small pieces of woods, different color of soil, alteration of small stones and soil with something like asphalt.

          Sir, need help. Thank you.

          • Rotten small pieces of woods at a depth of 90 feet is completely strange. I would suggest that you should keep going.

    • Hello Sir, I would like to ask for clarification about the Treasures? We have the computerize scanner, we used from the very start. But it can only detect 26.80 ft down from the surface.

      We tried to dug because of the Slates founded on the Coconut trees? And with the used of the scanner we detected something and by the reading it appeared Gold Bar? We thought it was not so deep so we dug. Now we have reached about 55ft. deep down from the surface? I was so confused that on that deep still nothing? We found Blue Sands in Color and I think it mix with a little cement.

      Can you please help me analyze for us to understand? From the surface down to 9ft. we found a skeletons? Down to 10-23ft. we found a YELLOW Cement Mix with all kinds of Shells from the sea Shore and its by a layer? 24-47ft. its a Blue in color made of cement mix with All kind of shells? At 47ft. we found 3 Big Conch Shells in Triangular form its head are facing its other by 1m in distances as estimated. After that its a 3 ft. charcoal next is Filed Flat Conch Shells with a Cement and a 2ft. thick Cement like and iron steel ( Broke with Moil and Mallet). All the flat flooring by its layer ranges estimated about 8 by 10ft.

    • Sir, good afternoon, we found 4 layer of water falls, in No. 3 portion of waterfall has a hole or short tunnel almost 2 meters drip with a length of a meter side by side perfect diamond portal shape covered at the back of flowing water. We tried to dug up at the bottom portion the diamond wherein the water hits when it fall, 2 to 3 feet on digging, we found an egg like heavy and hard black and shiny stone weighing more 200kg in a size of a pale or mineral container. And if you face fronting the portal diamond, in left side portion more or less 5 meters away from the portal and the falls, there is a circle shape like a bottom of a drum clearly seen beside the falls wherein it surrounded with rip-rap. My question is, what does the heavy stone means? and what does it mean in a rip-rap portion.

      Thanks and God Bless.

    • Sir we need some help, we are at 115 ft depth but still all we find were human remains, my number is ******.

    • As long as you are recovering human remains, that's a good sign telling you that you should continue digging.

    • Good day Sir, I am Jez. We are amateur THs and we have ongoing project near the back end of 60 meter tunnel. We used scanners such as Deep Hunter, Garret and OKM and it appeared that there are 9 spots enclosed with 1m x 2m concrete plus 1 spot without casing.

      Basing on the scanner result, the depth is approximately 18m to 20.8m. So we dug a hole directly on top of the so called giveaway or the one without casing.

      As we dug deeper, we encountered different layers of soil, some few stones with marking and at 10th to 12 meters we found a lot of round stones made from cement. At that depth, water started to flow. We kept digging and at 16th and we found few layers of shells then at 18th meter beyond we found layers of woods which most of it turned into hard cement probably due to chemical used.

      We are now at 22 meters deep and still dealing with wood cement. We are already beyond our target depth. Sir, are those scanners accurate? Are we going to dig deeper or we are just wasting time.

    • Scanners can be very accurate tools, however the result or reading a scanned site is actually more dependent on the person operating it. If he is inexperienced then there is a huge chance of him giving inaccurate readings.

  • Good day Sir, we are an amateur in this kind of field so we kindly ask your expertise and assistance. Sir, during our project at 2 meters deep from the surface, we encounter turtle sign cement about 50 cm size just like sleeping. We continue digging until we reach another 4 meters deep. We encounter 1 foot cement slab and with arrow head engrave. Sir we are now at 10 meters deep, we don’t know how long and how many deep more. Are we going to continue or we are just wasting our time?

    • Where or at what direction is the arrow sign pointing? This could mean a change in direction.

  • My husband accidentally discovered a triangular concrete object 3×3 feet in diameter with a metal hook attached to the apex of the triangle. The object was about 7 feet under the ground, few meters away from the dead deep-well now filled with soil, and few feet away from a big 3mx2x4m rock by the shore. Is the triangular concrete a hidden treasure?

    • In my own opinion, the answer to your question is Yes because of that hook attached to it. Anyway, if the site has already dried then you can just break that concrete right on its spot. There is no need to lift it out.

  • My two cousins came to me and informed that they stopped digging on a site because when there is lightning, the lightning will always hit the hole they are digging and they are afraid that their men will suffer. At 15 feet, they found a turtle shaped cement as big as a large fist. At 18 feet, they found a human foot shaped cement with four scratched lines at the top and the sides of the foot-shaped cement. At 20 feet, the men are complaining that their feet seemed to be tickled by the water. We hired another scanner and they said said it is positive. But my cousins are afraid because lightning is still hitting where the digging is done.

    Please advise. Thank you.

    • It is a very nice project where your cousin should still try to continue working on it. If the hole is being repeatedly struck by lightning for some unknown cause then there might be a certain entity that they ignored and now it is terribly mad. Anyway, my suggestion is to build a roof for protection against the lightning.

  • Sir, I have a video regarding our project. There is a stone forming a half face when we meet the 20 feet and it form triangular. I will let you see the video if you want. Thank you.

    • Sure, PM me that video on my FaceBook page account.

  • Sir please help. At 9 ft deep, we encounter a right feet with 1 line and at the heel of the feet, there is a point. The front of the foot has turtle with no arms and feet. What does it mean?

    • The right foot means that the item is at the right corner or side. But since there is a dot at the heel, it means that the item is behind the right foot marker. Thus, the overall meaning is that, the item is at the back-right corner of the foot marker.

      I already have a long detailed discussion about turtle signs. You might want to read it. Anyway, what it means is that you need to dig under and it is not referring underneath it but under the “back-right” corner of the foot marker.

  • Hello Sir, what is your opinion about Titan Ger Metal Detector. Is it accurate? Thanks.

    • I do not have any experience yet on this equipment.

  • Sir can you help me with this? We encounter a man made stone pile 4 ft then refined asphalt and charcoal at 6 ft. Are we close to the item Sir? Thank you and God bless.

    • Yes, it is possible due to the presence of that refined asphalt.

  • Sir Elmo, please give some advice/help we found many rocks after we dug almost 12 meters then after that, 2 meter deep the soil is so very soft and its free to collapse. Do you think Sir that we are near to the item? We are now 15 meters.

    The design of the soil in our site is just like this 1 meter soil and rocks, 3 meter soft cement and stones 3 meter soil 3 meter soft cement 2.5 meter stones and 3 meter soft soil.

    • Use timbers for braces and support so that your hole wont collapse. Anyway, you should keep going.

  • Hi Sir Elmo,

    I dig and I found a stone like a turtle and I see it in front is like an arrow. What can you say about it? Is it a sign?

    • I could not still confirm if it is a legit sign or not because there is a possibility that what you found is natural. Anyway, I would like you to do a further survey of the area if you can find any other additional markers that can support the turtle sign that you found.

  • Good day Sir Elmo,

    I just want to ask if it is possible to recover the treasure in the depth of 300 ft?

    • Yes, it is possible but on this kind of depth, you will be dealing with tunnels.

  • Can I have your comment on the possible the DEEPEST treasure site could be in Luzon island? Thanks.

    • I can only answer your question according to my own personal experience. The deepest treasure site in the region of Luzon goes from 80 to 120 feet and they are complex tunnel system.

  • Sir , good day.

    Why charcoal are included during the buried treasures?

    • It’s because it does not decay or change no matter how many years it will take under the ground.

  • Good day Sir,

    Our site is inside the cave and the sign is triangle no dot. Sir, we dig almost 150 ft.

    In our site, is there a chance to find it.

    • If it is just a triangle sign, it is referring to a spot at a certain corner.

      Yes, I do believe that you got the chance of being able to find it. Although, it may just take some time.

  • Good day Sir, can you help me about my site Sir?

    The sign of my site is triangle no dot and there is a marker 3 stone formed a triangle what does it mean?

    • If the triangle markers that you have found does not have any dot then it means that there a lot of work involve. It’s because you have to check and work on all of the three corners of the triangle including the center spot.

  • Sir, I have a project. We dug already 32 meters depth and I think we are dealing a tunnel because almost we take out a cement. And how thick the cover of the tunnel? Please help.

    • It is hard to say about the thickness of the concrete due to several factors involve. But most importantly, there is always something hidden behind it.

  • Good day Sir,

    Can you give us advise on this, there stand an old tree with a hole on the center and there we found a vintage bomb identified as mortar. They excavated 10 ft and found broken glass, san miguel beer bottle, la fortuna bottle kind of beverage and a huge long nail with a square head, should we dig deeper, and what are these signs?

    • Yes, they are interesting markers which means that you should continue to dig further.

  • Sir please give some advise on this, we are now in 110 feet and we are found a heart shape of stone and a piece of plastic.

    • 110 feet and you are still able to find a piece of plastic? I suggest that you should keep going.

  • You will find this interesting:
    Karen Hudes makes reference to Hurricane Haiyan.
    November 2013 was when the USA military began occupying the Philippines guarding “The World Bank’s treasures.”

    Apparently helicopters were falling out of the sky being so overburdened by the loot they collected.

    • Very interesting story, I’ll try to conduct further investigation about it and make a post about it later.

  • Good day Sir, may I know the meaning of 75Z engrave in a copper bell? It was found around 3ft underground the limestone together with broken Japs bottle. Thank you.

    • It means that the treasure deposit is inside a tunnel. However, there is a presence of a booby trap so you need to be careful.

  • Sir good afternoon,

    I would like to know your opinion about what they say in every treasure, there is what they say a (bantay) or unknown entity? Do you believe in this Sir? If yes, what to do?

    • Yes, that’s true. And if that is the case then you need to consult a reliable spiritual medium.

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