A Father and Son Prospecting Adventure
May 2013 by Joe ChmielAs I write this, I am still on a rush from taking my 9-year-old son, Jeffrey, prospecting for the first time this past weekend. It’s not that he hasn’t been along on numerous outings before: this is the first time that just the two of us went out for a day of drywashing and detecting under the desert sun.
I have found gold more than 200 feet above the river. It was not unusual for nuggets of an ounce or more to be found in these deposits, but fine gold and flakes are much more common.
Digging in the right spots will produce excellent results, like this group of nuggets taken by the author while metal detecting during the last few months. The biggest nugget is over an ounce.
...I decided to excavate the semi-frozen high-bank that was resting on a soft shale bedrock footing. Within three feet, I encountered an intrusive!
The first thing a person should do is seriously consider whether they want to go mining as a hobby or a business, and the tax implications of the choice.
I grew up in Southern California, and found my first nugget there, so I know my way around. Because there is good gold there, I thought it might be helpful to take a look at the many placer gold opportunities found in the southern part of the state.
Gold and jade are actually only minor mineral resources for the Northwestern Alaska region as a whole. Modern prospecting has focused more on base metal than precious metal resources.
There were iron stains all over and even a few places where I could see iron trash sticking out of the bedrock. These would be ideal spots to start with as the gold travels with the iron and lead.
The Bawl Mill • Gold Rush in the Congo • Find of a Lifetime • All About Quartz—Part I • Over the Divide • Your Guide to Prospecting in Alaska • Shallow Water Crevicing Can Bring Big Rewards • Home Office Deductions • Advantages of Modern Prospectors • Searchers' Dreams • Gold in Unlikely Places • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices