Prospecting Australia—Part I
October 2011 by Chris RalphThe call of gold is a strong one and it has pulled men from every corner of the planet. That said, I guess it’s now my turn to chase far away gold.
The 2011 gold season had finally got underway on the Middle Fork of the Feather River near Quincy, California. Cold weather and high water had pushed gold mining into mid-summer, but things were looking up.
I love it when I am in the middle of a high trash area and all the ferrous bars go away, the screen number goes to a three or an eight, and the meter is forty to a hundred. I don’t know for sure that I have found gold, but it narrows the odds down.
Lots of prospectors are trying out nugget detecting for the first time and finding out that it isn’t all that easy. In fact, in my opinion, metal detecting for nuggets is perhaps the most difficult form of prospecting that one can take on.
In my early days of nugget hunting things were fairly simple. Just headphones, a pack, a detector and a small pick were all I needed for my search for great wealth.
My largest nugget from this area is almost one-half ounce. I’ve found several smaller chunks and many pickers in addition to the fines and flakes that I put in my poke.
I had two of the guys go down into the creek and each one picked out a small island of bedrock. I had them detect their piece of bedrock and then gave a critique to all on how they did.
Doug told me that there had been a 100-year flood that took place in October of 2013 and it washed out part of the mile-long landing strip. It also washed a large, wide gully down below and above the camp.
The Bawl Mill • Legislative And Regulatory Update • Ask The Experts—Separating platinum from sands using bubbles • Ask The Experts—Extraction of micro gold from black sands • Ask The Experts—Difference between a Geiger counter and scintillator • Then and Now: Is Gold Really Money? • Gold, Quartz & Chalcedony—Part I • Oregon Dredge Permit Litigation Update • Gold From Black Sand Tailings • The Fine Art of Panning Heavy Sands • California State Gold Panning Championships • The Golden Days of Julian, California • An Expensive Lesson • Judge Denies Request To Delay Michigan Mine • Melman on Gold & Silver