Iowa Hill District
June 2012 by Chris RalphFor the last two years we’ve held a hands-on prospectors training session in the Iowa Hill district of California’s Mother Lode country as a part of our Gold Prospecting and Mining Summit event. Because of this, I thought it might be good to take a look at the history, geology and opportunities that the Iowa Hill district still offers to the individual prospector.
Fran, and I had made a practice of turning big boulders in gold producing areas to find some great rewards. Sometimes it was slow and frustrating, but in the end “We got the gold!”
...this county contained some of the richest placer ground found in all of California and still produces some pretty impressive finds to this day.
Hearty trees, shrubs and plants are a product of the soil conditions in which they grow, so it makes sense that roots near an ore deposit will take on nutrients containing metals if they are present.
Problems finding gold with a detector
Rick donned a pair of fiberglass shin guards that he normally wore dredging, just in case he uncovered the rattlesnake during his digging and rock moving. I wasn’t convinced they were going to provide enough protection.
During my adventures I’ve learned a few key best practices that help me to consistently find gold nuggets with my detectors. You can apply many of these best practices to any type of prospecting. These best practices are really common sense; however, they are easy to neglect.
It took me awhile before I finally got a nice mellow signal. My nugget turned out to weigh in about two dwt (pennyweight). Over the next few hours, we all picked up a few more nuggets apiece.
The Bawl Mill • Our Readers Say • Gold Deposition and Gradients of Placer Streams—Part I • Pursuing Rare Earths in Wyoming • The Mole • Prospecting for Copper Ores—Part I • Repair / Replace Tax Rule Changes • The Wisdom of Mark Twain—And Tales of Cheating the Unwary Prospector • Colorado Mining Association Appeals Roadless Ruling • Ganes Creek Hits 10 Years—Part II • Fifteen and Counting • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices