Exceptions to the Rules: Re-Thinking Prospecting Rules of Thumb
January 2020 by Chris Ralph
Looking at the exceptions to the basic rules is sort of an advanced prospecting discussion, but the readers of ICMJs Prospecting and Mining Journal are plenty able to handle it.
Back at the entry point of the mine, we took turns slowly crawling down the slope leading into the mine portal with our metal detectors, hard hats and flashlights. The mine was hand dug and is about 75 yards long.
Easing around the bedrock ledges and rock hopping, Terry and I came out into the open and were looking at a nice run of bedrock.
We dug and extracted for two more hours. This time, as I dumped the concentrates, I saw a piece of gold three-fourths of an inch long and as big around as a pencil.
It is better in a gem and mineral mining operation that the driller, blaster and mucker be the same person in order to be able to predict placement of the desired mineral enriched pockets.
The signal I was hearing was coming from a vertical bedrock crack on the bank of the creek. I removed my backpack, took out my crevicing tools and started to clean out the crack when I saw a glint of gold.
The pile up on the small hill had to be a couple yards of black sand. I’m not one to ignore a little gold even if it is small in size—I have always believed that gold fever comes in all sizes.
Perhaps the most notable thing about skim placers is that they form on the top surface of gravel bars, as opposed to coarser gold placers where the weight of the gold particles allows the gold to settle down on or near bedrock.
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