Fall Drywashing—Just the Right Time of Year
November 2018 by Chris Ralph
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.
Potholes in bedrock can trap placer minerals and even be glory holes. They are, at least, interesting geologic phenomena, and at best, a treasure trove of gold nuggets.
The type of mine dump that is best for metal detecting are the ones that consist of mixed sizes of rock and are located near some sort of excavation, commonly a shaft or adit. Sometimes the piles located along a trench dug by the miners can be productive as well.
Federal and state regulatory agencies often cite mercury and methyl mercury in our waterways as a major factor for further restrictions on placer mining, and on suction gold dredge mining, in particular. However, these regulatory agencies are minimizing selenium and its neutralizing effects.
I remember in the couple of years after that 1997 flood, prospectors around California did very well, taking ounces of gold from places that had not yielded any gold for years before that.
Most dry washers have a feed rate adjustment. It needs to be set so that the material flows evenly over the riffles and does not bury them.
The only thing that saved me was talking to a local miner who gave me a “heads up” that private individuals owned all the mineral rights in that section.
The father-son duo spent years combing this bit of Pennsylvania wilderness with high-end metal detectors, drills and other tools to prospect for a fabled cache of Civil War gold.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts - Skim Bar Placers article clarification • Ask The Experts - Is LR2000 working correctly? • Ask The Experts - What claim papers am I required to file at the county level? • Humble Beginnings • Understanding Large Gold Deposit Types: Discovering New Mines • Roads to Nowhere • Treasure Hunters Challenge FBI Over Dig for Civil War Gold • Out of the Ashes—New Access to Gold • Alluvial Paystreaks • Arizona Prospector Rescued from Mine Shaft • California State and US National Gold Panning Championships • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices