Gold Prospecting: For Better or Worse
September 2018 by Joe Chmiel
We all love to see that first glimmer of gold when it peeks out from under the black sand in our pan, or feel the weight of a nugget in our scoop when we dig a good target. But sometimes things don’t go quite so smoothly.
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.
So why would a modern-day prospector want to learn about a method of mining that was banned by the courts more than a century ago?
Setting up a gravity dredge
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.
We needed something to cook on, so we brought most of our kitchen with us including our full-size oven, which was pretty funny to see in the middle of a rainforest. Food was always a concern, but fortunately for us...
We decided to run a detector over each piece. If we got a decent signal we placed the piece into a high-grade pile and the rest went into another pile to be worked on later. This high-grade pile wasn’t that large—maybe 25 pounds...
• Making a noisy dredge more quiet
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