So You Want To Be A Full-Time Prospector?
March 2011 by Chris RalphThe high price of gold and the poor economic conditions here in the US have created an unusual situation—a large number of folks are thinking seriously about getting into prospecting and digging for gold on a full-time basis.
After your excitement peaks when you first receive the high gold assay from the vein you just exposed, you ponder how you will extract and sell your gold. You will need to develop a flow sheet for your process to optimize your recovery and minimize your costs and permit requirements.
For this article, I am focusing on industrial production plants that can handle 10 cubic yards per hour or more and would be fed by a loader or other heavy equipment...
There are loads of new gold prospectors attracted by the current high prices, and so I thought it might be a great time to take a look at what makes some prospectors so much more successful than others.
It rained over four inches that night and the creek flooded both my backyard and my workshop. When I opened the door to my workshop Christmas morning, an unwelcome sight greeted me.
Perhaps the most notable thing about skim placers is that they form on the top surface of gravel bars, as opposed to coarser gold placers where the weight of the gold particles allows the gold to settle down on or near bedrock.
I pulled out the nuggets I had worked on previously and looked at the size of the wire basket that the items to be cleaned are placed into. It looks much like a miniature french fry deep fryer.
The fact that mineral deposits can contribute specific types of heavy minerals is why the analysis of the heavy mineral concentrates in the streams of an area can be an important prospecting technique for finding undiscovered mineral deposits.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts—Do I still have rights to this mining claim? • Ask The Experts—What is a "closed" claim? • Eastern Arizona: Gold and Base Metal Deposits Part II • Rediscovering Placerville, California Part II • Prospecting With The Help of Fluvial Geomorphology • Oregon Anti-Dredging Bill • Mud Men: Pocket Miners of Southwest Oregon Part II • The Gold of Plumas de Oro • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices