Old Mine Sites and New Technology
September 2018 by Jack Geck
We’ve had two trips to the deserts of Nevada and explored mines and mill sites, hiked miles of ravines in California, and swung our detector coils over thousands of square yards of bedrock.
In October, five of us decided to take an exploration trip into an area called Green Valley. This was perhaps ten miles upstream from where we had gone in September and the difficulty was access. One would think that based on the name it was an easily accessible area not far from a nearby town. This couldn’t be more wrong.
During this trip we found enough gold to make us want to come back, even with the punishment of a very long, tough hike.
Nuggets make for the best memories and this patch was just adding to mine. In the hours of daylight I had left, I worked from that nugget to the bottom of the patch, collecting eight more nuggets.
Many of the gold camps were violent places, but in this regard, the town of Auburn exhibited a different behavior. There were few of the duels or lynchings that characterized many of the other early settlements.
Bela and Barbara Kovacs began prospecting for gold about seven years ago as a family orientated outdoors activity. A welder by trade and lured by the simple fact that beach sands can contain small bits of precious metals, Bela decided a few years ago to build a sand sucking contraption that can sift the shoreline for anything worth keeping.
If the material drops down out of the hopper too fast, it can overwhelm the riffles and you can blow the gold right out. If it runs too slowly, the riffles can clog up and the process is too slow.
There are times when being able to recognize a type of rock can make you a much more successful prospector.
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