Fabulous Florence—The Golden Town of Idaho
May 2012 by Alan TreesIn September 1861, on a round-about prospecting journey homeward, five California gold miners discovered gold in the area now called Florence. While watering the horses, one of the men noticed a golden color on a piece of slate bedrock in the stream...
Because tungsten minerals are heavy, exploration can be done using stream sediment samples. Prospectors looking for gold have found scheelite or wolframite in their placer concentrates, and in some cases this has led them to make important tungsten finds.
The other opportunity that I see is in seeking unusual types of deposits. Specifically, the prospector would be searching for the stuff no one (or almost no one) is searching for. These deposits are effectively hiding in plain view.
How rich does a hard rock ore have to be for it to be worthwhile to process and extract the gold?
These conditions don’t just apply to Alaska and the Yukon; they apply to western Canada and even to the mountainous western United States.
I set up my dry washer on the north side of the cut and sampled the bed rock and dumps around me. As I was only sampling, I ran for 20-30 minutes, shoveling from a variety of areas.
He found 5 to 7 feet of gravel containing half an ounce per yard. This started a rush of placer activity and several other shafts were sunk, with some large multi-ounce nuggets being found.
In this case, signs of gold were found at the bottom of the alluvial and then traced in a triangle up the face of the mountain until they stopped—that is where the digging began.
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