The Gold Of Horseshoe Bend
November 2011 by Tom LeftwichAnd 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.
I had a chance to visit the operation in person and talk with Neal. I was very impressed and I think our readers could learn a lot about building up a commercial placer operation from scratch…
Day three was a copy of day two. I started real low in the long wash to see if I could prove how far down the gold had made it.
Within a few minutes I got my first signal and dug out a small flake about three grains.
Walking around the gulch and exploring the upper drainage, picking up different rocks and inspecting them with a good loop, and looking them up in a field guide of rocks and minerals of your region will help you understand how the gold got there.
Much more information can be gained from that single source and gives you ideas on the gravels for dry washing or where the nuggets may lie for metal detecting
Even with my favorite top-of-the-line gold detector there were several false digs. Many of the hot rocks gave a solid signal that was too much like a nugget to ignore. After trying several tests I just dug everything because it is better to be safe than leave a big, deep nugget for a more diligent gold hunter.
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 Bawl Mill • Legislative And Regulatory Update • Ask The Experts—Compensation for closed mining claim? • Ask The Experts—Inconsistent fire assays • Gold From Cemented Gravels • Evolution Of A Gold Prospect • Gold, Quartz & Chalcedony—Part II • Alaska to Target Rare-Earths • Minnesota Delays Decision on Mineral Leases • Alaska's Cripple Creek Mining District • Tyrie's Roadway Nugget • Melman on Gold & Silver