Sierra County Gold—Part I
December 2013 by Chris Ralph...this county contained some of the richest placer ground found in all of California and still produces some pretty impressive finds to this day.
The metal is expensive, not because it is rare but because of the expense to produce and work it. The minerals mined for titanium are all oxides, unlike many base metals that are mostly mined as sulfide minerals.
The most commonly asked question in metal detecting is, “Which metal detector should I get?” People worry a lot about not getting the right machine. They do not want to waste their money and their time with the wrong metal detector.
Some claim they can smell gold. This may be, but when I take a whiff of gold, I smell dirt, rotten eggs, garlic or just nothing: my nose is everything but sensitive.
And we eventually reached gold. It was a winding crevice of beautiful white quartz lined with small nuggets and loaded with fine gold. There were flakes and small granular pieces—there had to be a hundred or more.
Every year there are large nuggets found by the diligent, and occasionally by the lucky newbie.
As I arrived at my detecting location, I got all my gear and headed up the trail. I had to stop and take in the devastation all around me.
The signal I was hearing was coming from a vertical bedrock crack on the bank of the creek. I removed my backpack, took out my crevicing tools and started to clean out the crack when I saw a glint of gold.
The Bawl Mill • Ask the Experts • Ask the Experts • Ask the Experts • ICMJ's Annual Index • Ophir—Possibly the Best Kept Secret in Alaska—Part II • Hunting for Hardrock: The Basics • Gold in the San Francisco District Oatman, Mohave County, Arizona • Heavy Glacial Rocks and Gold in the Midwest • Strategic Metals—Part II • The Amazing Mineral Tourmaline • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices