Ask The Experts
July 2015 by Chris RalphQ: Is there a correlation between fault zones and mineralization of economic metals?
I regularly get inquiries along the line of: “Hey, I found this rock, and I think it might be gold ore. How can I tell?” Prospectors are always on the lookout for gold-bearing rocks that may be the source of any nearby placer gold.
While a large number of locations have yielded some placer gold, most of the state’s placer production has come from a few productive districts.
The other opportunity that I see is in seeking unusual types of deposits. Specifically, the prospector would be searching for the stuff no one (or almost no one) is searching for. These deposits are effectively hiding in plain view.
Only the famous Kennecott copper mine was able to continue operating through the Depression owing to the exceptional richness of its ore.
The fact that mineral deposits can contribute specific types of heavy minerals is why the analysis of the heavy mineral concentrates in the streams of an area can be an important prospecting technique for finding undiscovered mineral deposits.
The Reno Masonic Lodge was built along the railroad tracks back when Ulysses S. Grant was president and shortly after the Comstock Lode of gold and silver was struck in Virginia City.
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