Addressing EPA Overreach: What Dredgers Need to Know
March 2016 by Scott HarnThe Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been attempting to extend their authority and intimidate miners and other public land users for decades. Suction gold dredgers are no exception, and we want to highlight a recent example of how to deal with this federal overreach.
Most of us know making a profit as a small-scale miner is difficult; however, sometimes we combine luck with a little skill and bring home a few ounces of the yellow stuff.
The nugget was cast aside with larger rocks during the screening process, but it was found later by an employee...
We split up in order to cover a larger area and found good color almost everywhere. The bedrock was shallow on both sides of the river, but the inside bend was where we concentrated our prospecting.
I would first like to mention that I am not a geologist. I have, however, spent the last 8 years intently searching for gold nuggets with a metal detector. I have found gold in numerous locations, and in several different types of gold deposits.
Perhaps the most notable thing about skim placers is that they form on the top surface of gravel bars, as opposed to coarser gold placers where the weight of the gold particles allows the gold to settle down on or near bedrock.
The biggest obstacle is that like many streams on the Kenai Peninsula, high water during the summer months from snow melt and rain can make dredging nearly impossible. The best dredging is in the colder months of the year.
Old mine workings and tailing piles can represent opportunities on many levels, from the chance to simply find a nugget on up to the commercial reworking of the old tailings for profit.
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