Detecting for Gold in Australia—The Kimberley Trip
December 2010 by Jonathan PorterThe hair stood up on the back of my neck when I saw this, especially the nice patches of wash in the bottoms of the gullies, a sure sign of an auriferous source being nearby.
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.
Prospectors who specialize in electronic detecting for nuggets in desert areas are especially interested in this type of deposit, as it yields nuggets that are close to the surface of the ground...
Unfortunately for us mortal humans, we have a poor perspective on geologic time. When we look at a landscape such as a stream valley, we see it only in two, or at the most, three dimensions. We have poor comprehension of the valley’s fourth and most important dimension—time.
One of the most important things prospectors do is work to figure out where to go prospecting. Along with understanding the basic geology and putting yourself in a favorable area, one of the things a prospector might consider in finding a location to search is the existence of mining belts also known as mineral deposit trends.
These were the men who periodically picked up the gold amalgam from the tables and sluices in the dredge, processed it, and transported the gold ingots to the railroad express office in Alder. Their trustworthiness must have commanded a prominent wage.
The placer mineral identification key is designed to answer this question. It attempts to recognize all the minerals in your gold pan concentrates.
How rich does a hard rock ore have to be for it to be worthwhile to process and extract the gold?
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