Prospecting and Mining Old Mine Sites
December 2016 by Alex DolbeareIn some places valuable ores can be found within the waste material of mine dumps, sorted ore piles, and detrital vein matter at the surface. Though many of these old mine sites can be an excellent source of gold, not all are created equal.
It is not necessary to have a PhD in geology, but you need to know the basics, so that’s what I am going to try to dig into here—the understandable basics of these gigantic gold deposits.
What makes the difference between successful prospectors and those who struggle? It just seems like there are some guys who stumble on gold no matter what they do. Are they just lucky?
My intention was to end this discussion with waypoints and routes, then I found USGS maps of the Plainfield Quadrangle.
This article is about our recent gold prospecting adventure, which has yielded over 20 ounces of specimen gold—with more to come.
After a short time, the tailings pile can get very large, and can actually block the downstream end of the sluice box.
What I saw was a beach area that was just completely covered in black sand. Rubbing my hands close together like a kid in a candy store, I could not wait to get set up.
We panned out maybe three gold pans of the material and we were shocked at the gold that was there. This rock appeared to be rich.
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