The Joy of Prospecting
February 2004 by Chris RalphI have been prospecting and mining for gold, both as a hobby and as an occupation, for nearly 30 years. From the deep green forests to the rolling sagebrush hills, few people see as much of America’s wide-open spaces as I do.
San Marino, California—"Boys, I believe I have found a gold mine!" With these simple words, an obscure New Jersey carpenter and mechanic named James W. Marshall set in motion a global cascade of events that dramatically shaped the social and economic life of California and the American West.
Miners are digging again where their forebears once unearthed riches from eight historic mines that honeycomb Sutter Gold Mining Company’s holdings about 50 miles southeast of Sacramento.
The non-toxic thiosulfate is actually the medical antidote given to people for cyanide poisoning. By accomplishing both neutralization and metals recovery, this process creates an economic and environmentally attractive process.
• Refunds coming to Nevada claimholders
• More wilderness proposed
• Forest Service planning rule
Plumas County has a rich heritage of gold mining, much of it from placer deposits that can still be searched and panned today. Being at the far northern end of California’s famed Mother Lode, it is quite often overlooked by those searching for gold today—really a well-kept secret after all of these years!
The Bawl Mill • Our Readers Say • Buying or Investing in Mineral Properties • Company Notes • Picks & Pans: Rattlesnakes in a Gold Camp • Old-Time Mining Geology Books • Ask the Experts: Recommended Reading—Part I • The Tangential Impulse Water Wheel in California Gold Mining History—Part I • Consider Adding Gold to Your Portfolio • US Files Charges Against Gold Refiner • Gold in Australia • Gold in Rotten Rock • Restoring the Rule of Law to US Mining • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices