Train a dog to help you. One of the biggest advantages you can give yourself is recruiting a dog’s help. Dogs are a major asset to the search process because they can only smell ripe truffles, so they won’t dig up worthless, inedible truffles. Additionally, they can be trained fairly easily and can be taught to not eat the truffles when they find them.
If you want to train your dog to hunt truffles in the northwestern United States, there are many trainers that offer these specific services. Some of these trainers include NW Truffle Dogs (Portland, OR), Trifecta Training (Eugene, OR), and Toil and Truffle (Seattle, WA).
Pigs are also good at finding truffles, but they’re much more difficult to train and they often eat the truffles.
Dig truffles up with a rake. When you’ve found an area beneath a tree that you think may contain truffles, use a small 4-prong rake to dig up the dirt in the area.
If truffles are present, they’re likely 1 to 6 inches (2.5 to 15.2 cm) deep in the soil. However, sometimes they can be located as deep as 1 foot (0.30 m) underground or show up above ground.
Use headlamps for night time searches. In some of the more popular searching areas, within Italy, for example, people dig all day every day hoping to strike it rich. If you want to search in one of these areas, consider searching during the night so that no one will be in your way. Simply put on an LED headlamp and get digging