Prospecting for Diamonds in Kimberlite
January 2014 by W. Dan HauselKimberlite is very difficult for geologists to find, let alone prospectors and rock hounds. This is because kimberlite is rarely exposed on the surface and few people know how to identify the rock.
Back at the entry point of the mine, we took turns slowly crawling down the slope leading into the mine portal with our metal detectors, hard hats and flashlights. The mine was hand dug and is about 75 yards long.
This was two days of gold panning, with just over 250 gold panners trying to win a medal to show they were one of the best of the best.
My metal detecting hobby began about ten years ago when I bought a used metal detector for about $300. I got it specifically to look for meteorites. It was pretty much worthless, not user friendly, and I did not find anything with it.
Don’t hunker down and just keep digging in one spot where there is very little or no gold—if you don’t find it, you’ve got to get up and move on!
My intention was to end this discussion with waypoints and routes, then I found USGS maps of the Plainfield Quadrangle.
At the end of the day, Jerry showed me how to clean out the sluice box and then how to pan out the concentrates. As we finished panning, there it was—a little tiny smile of gold...
I cleared the connector by poking a small Phillips screwdriver through it. To ensure the bore was clean, I dunked the connector into some water and then blew it clean with my shop air compressor.
The Bawl Mill • Ask the Experts: Big rocks or small cobbles? • Ask the Experts: Quartz rock and the chance of gold in my area of New Hampshire? • Ask the Experts: Equipment and gold locations in Colorado • Ask the Experts: Silent partners and mining—is it worth the risk? • Sierra County Gold—Part II • The Silver Islet Mountains of Utah • Gold Placers of the Kenai Peninsula, Alaska • Alternative Gold Leaching Methods • Over the Divide • Additional Note Regarding "Strategic Metals—Part II" • Take a Kid Detecting • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices