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Prospecting & Detecting

SS Central America Gives Up Millions in Gold Rush Era Gold

A treasure-seeking young man whose name will forever remain anonymous made the months-long journey either over land or by sailing ship to California after word spread about the gold strike in 1849.

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Tucson Show Marketing


Normally we do not cover gem and mineral shows, but this one is a little different. The Tucson (Arizona) Gem and Mineral show is the sales source for so many small mining operations, I felt I had to address this show and its possibilities for the small miner.

The Birthday Nugget Patch


Down around 10 or 12 inches I hit a large cobble that appeared to be one type of hot rock for this area. I thought bad things about the new technology until I checked the rock.

The Art of Underwater Nugget Shooting


There is a surprising amount of detectable gold under the water’s surface. The right tools make it much easier to find, and with a little patience and practice you can take advantage of this underappreciated bonanza.

How to Upgrade Your Pocket Plunger


These three simple upgrades, when taken together, will considerably increase a pocket plunger’s magnetic pull and make it less susceptible to breakage.

Finding Gold with a VLF Detector—Part I


The very first thing to find out...is if the detector has the ability to be ground balanced.

The Pothole Patch


"Suh-wheet!" I exclaimed as I sprang to my feet and quickly pumped my detector coil high overhead to alert Smokey that I had just found a nugget.

Detecting Canyon Bedrock in The Sierras


My plan was to go up the canyon along a ridge and then drop into the canyon whenever I came across a spot that might give me reasonable access.

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