Prospecting for Iron in Alaska
July 2003 by Dr. Ralph E. PrayThe solo prospector in his canvas field clothes and skin-thick skiff is still king of the rain forest in southeastern Alaska. Even with all the highly trained field people and their helicopters, it is he who ventures forth across ocean water and in the bush to search for new wealth hidden beneath the green carpet of the vast Tongass Forest.
The first experience involved an overgrown gold mine operated during the 1880s. A razed mill adjoined the mine and could be glimpsed from the isolated public dirt road I was traveling.
Looking around, I could tell that this was an old hand-digging. As I walked around the perimeter of the digging I could see shovel and pick marks scratched on the clean, hard clay and bedrock.
• Helium, going up, up and away...
• By the numbers...
• Unsustainable regulations...
This year’s 2015 California State Gold Panning Championships were wild and hectic.
Landowners complained that mineral mining on or near their property could damage property values while leaving them without a cut of potential profits.
It is a gemstone, and yet it is also closely associated with many types of metal ores. It's valuable itself but often points toward other valuable minerals—that is certainly something prospectors want to know more about!
Most of the world's great gold mines are in secondary (supergene) enrichments in veins and stockwork, brought about by physical and chemical processes.
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