Detecting Canyon Bedrock in The Sierras
September 2018 by Ray Mills
My plan was to go up the canyon along a ridge and then drop into the canyon whenever I came across a spot that might give me reasonable access.
Back in October I read with great interest Chris Ralph’s article on the use of a metal detector while drywashing, and I wholeheartedly agree—I wouldn’t even consider going drywashing without using a metal detector in conjunction...
I returned to the WSPA claim. Still smug from my previous success, I was thinking I could not fail. However, the gold gods had other plans.
Shallow water crevicing or sniping can produce gold if you’re persistent, a hard worker and lucky. It’s nice to have a snorkel, wet suit and goggles. The best practice for success, in my humble opinion, has always been to determine the best gold location and then figure out how to capture it.
Last month, in “Following Clues to a Hidden Gold Deposit,” I ended the article with the direction that we were on the hunt! We were getting prepared and ready to roll with our detectors, then snow came, and lots of it. We had already found the seam diggings mine on the mountainside in wild, rough brush and trees. It had been well hidden.
Unfortunately, not all the gold that we prospectors find is pretty, or appealing to the eyes. They are not all nice, bright, shiny nuggets with lots of character that carry high collector value.
That is the course and intention for this article—to wander through some of the lessons I have learned in my thirty-two years of metal detecting and prospecting.
A treasure-seeking young man whose name will forever remain anonymous made the months-long journey either over land or by sailing ship to California after word spread about the gold strike in 1849.
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