Gold in the Slate Creek Basin
September 2011 by Don RobinsonIn some areas these channels were thousands of feet wide, and just figuring out where you are in some of these diggings is a challenge.
Not too far from the pine-filled mountains, a young boy was exploring along Meadow Creek in Cabarrus County, North Carolina, one fine day in 1799. He discovered a beautiful rock that he took home and put to good use as a doorstop. Shortly thereafter, a jeweler stopped by to visit his folks, and as it turned out, the new doorstop was actually a 17-pound gold nugget. That nugget truly did open a door as it marked the beginning of the first gold rush in America.
There were nice sections of vein material at the end of several drifts, like they just stopped work one day and walked away.
As a gold prospector for the past ten years, I thought that I had a fair understanding of the steps necessary to find gemstones.
The excavator or backhoe has become the tool of choice for testing placer ground. These machines are the best way to explore and sample a placer deposit if the ground is not too wet or frozen and bedrock is not beyond the reach of the machine.
There are not a lot of tools needed to get out and take advantage of the situation. Other than my wetsuit, I typically travel light with a gold pan, maybe a pry bar and a few crevice cleaning tools.
There were many small gold placers found and worked in the deserts in the old days, which had then been pretty much forgotten about. We all tried to be the first to re-discover these spots.
Has your experience ever led you to wonder why some gold is deposited on bedrock and in crevices, while other gold is not? We’re going take a deeper look at this and see what we can figure it out.
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