Sampling for Success—Part I
March 2020 by Chris Ralph
All these decisions and more depend on the richness of a claim—something that is determined by sampling. But sampling isn’t cheap, and even collecting the samples can be more difficult than it appears on the surface.
Most gold-bearing veins in this region are controlled by fractures associated with the Melones Fault, a late Cretaceous structure that is 108 to 127 million years old.
I love to dry wash old nugget patches found by detector operators, and I have found my fair share of gold dry washing those areas. I have also found a few nuggets using a detector on the bedrock exposed by dry washing the patches.
Sampling gold placers can be rewarding, but remember to treat the samples so you are not high grading or low grading your results. Learn the rules and apply them so your samples are accurate.
The excavator or backhoe has become the tool of choice for testing placer ground. These machines are the best way to explore and sample a placer deposit if the ground is not too wet or frozen and bedrock is not beyond the reach of the machine.
I researched the Internet and found a number of table makers, but technology has changed in the last 25 years. No one could sell me a kit for a new deck with wooden riffles...
Improper sampling techniques lead to more avoidable heartache than almost anything else in micro mining.
Even if you are not ready to cash in right now, it might be good to evaluate your options and make a plan of action so when that day comes you know exactly what to do.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts -- How do I find the owners of patented property? • Ask The Experts -- Is it worth going after these rare earth minerals? • Ask The Experts -- Will a land mine detector work for gold? • How to Turn Your Gold Finds Into Cash • My First Gold Patch • Caught Between A Hard Rock and A Rare Earth Place • The Potholes—California’s Oldest Known Mining District • Over The Divide: Annie Carol Robinson • Gold Prospecting for Better or Worse: If the RV’s a Rockin’, Please Come a Knockin’ • The Mid-Winter Nugget • Gold In The Midwest—Part III: Iowa, Missouri, and Kansas • Trump Proposes $1.5 Billion to Fund US Uranium Production • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices • Melman on Gold & Silver