Gold in the Philippines
October 2003 by Edgar B. Heylmun, PhDThe Philippine archipelago, with over 7,000 islands that stretch for 1,100 miles north-south, was settled by Malaysians several thousand years ago. Ferdinand Magellan landed and was killed there in 1521. Spaniards took over the islands in 1571, and founded Manila, which is located on a large natural harbor. After the Spanish-American war in 1898, the United States took over the Philippines, and found itself in a brutal 6-year war before gaining control of all of the islands.
On about the fifth time across one of these slopes, and down near the little wash...bam! I found a nice chunk of rock, laced through with gold. Wow! How had I missed this?
Niobium (columbium) and tantalum are related metals that usually occur together and are associated with vanadium on the periodic chart of the elements. Both metals have seen increased usage in high-tech applications in recent years because of increased availability.
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.
Luckily, at about that time, I buddied up with a somewhat cantankerous, but very helpful, guy named Rod. He had become a local legend for his ability to consistently find gold.
When I teach people about finding gold, I often explain that it is helpful to think of any river or stream that carries gold as being something like a sluice box.
When others saw piles of waste rock at the former LTV Steel Mining property, Brad Gerlach saw opportunity.
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