Ask The Experts
March 2016 by Chris RalphCan a metal detector be used to find limonitic gossan material?
Potholes in bedrock can trap placer minerals and even be glory holes. They are, at least, interesting geologic phenomena, and at best, a treasure trove of gold nuggets.
Once indicators start showing up along or below a contact I start to get excited. When I have shale, and outcroppings of diorite with iron-red, gritty soil and some clay thrown in, I really get lightheaded. I may be a mile away from the nearest diggings but that’s okay. I just found a spot that could provide some nice nugget hunting.
The only thing that saved me was talking to a local miner who gave me a “heads up” that private individuals owned all the mineral rights in that section.
During my adventures I’ve learned a few key best practices that help me to consistently find gold nuggets with my detectors. You can apply many of these best practices to any type of prospecting. These best practices are really common sense; however, they are easy to neglect.
I was amazed and surprised, and I took a moment to admire how beautiful this coarse chunk of gold was. It later weighed exactly one-half ounce.
The amount of gold in the traces from the low-grade scattered veinlets may be much more than the traces from the small but rich pocket, at least until the pocket hunter closes in on the rich pocket. Further confusion arises if the prospector stumbles across a placer deposit on one of the higher peaks.
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