Desert Prospecting Yields More Than Just Gold
June 2020 by Joe Chmiel
This wash was not far from where I once dug a half-ounce nugget, so I knew there was gold in the area.
So much of gold detecting depends on attention to detail. Every gold area offers its own distinct geological markers and as prospectors we must pick up on those markers.
These days they employ the use of metal detectors and carefully scan the shattered rocks, hoping to hear that sound we detectorists love to hear.
I could see lots of quartz, both loose on the hillsides and in the numerous small prospect diggings. There was a small gold rush here more than a century ago.
…to see the huge differences between the gold production amounts of the Western States, let’s look at the gold production—both hard rock and placer—of these 13 states up to the present.
If the material drops down out of the hopper too fast, it can overwhelm the riffles and you can blow the gold right out. If it runs too slowly, the riffles can clog up and the process is too slow.
One prime example is an area that I have talked about in many of my articles. This is a very large area and I will actually describe its location again.
Because the forces of erosion and gravity tend to carry lighter materials like quartz away more easily, the heavy minerals like gold or silver will tend to be concentrated in the general area around the vein outcrop. These concentrations are what make residual placers so attractive.
The Bawl Mill • Our Readers Say Re: It's Time to Get the Heck Out of China • Ask The Experts - What’s the status of suction gold dredge permitting in California? • Ask The Experts - How do I properly and safely dispose of blasting caps? • Ask The Experts - How much silver per ton does it take to make a mine profitable? • Ask The Experts - How clean do my gold concentrates need to be to pour a gold button or bar? • Ask The Experts - What is the name and model of the old jaw crusher pictured in last month’s issue? • Dredging Tips and Tricks: T-80 Air Compressor Maintenance • Hard Rock 101: Mechanical Techniques • Clearing the Nugget Trap with a Detector • Resurrecting an Old Hard Rock Mine—Setting Up the Millsite • Memories of Shirttail Creek, Northern California • Indictments Pile Up for Gold Traders • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices