The "Madonna Nugget"—A Weekend Hunt to Remember
July 2017 by Tom Reyes
I worked my way to a flat area along a ridge where I could see a quartz blowout. As I got within 100 feet of it, I started seeing rock that I knew to be associated with gold.
Once a seam is found it can be traced for miles in either direction. While you are tracing a clay line, you are looking for indicators. The indicators that I look for are ironstone, hematite, different color clays intermingled with the clay line, and a very iron-rich, brown gritty soil.
• Making a noisy dredge more quiet
Rick donned a pair of fiberglass shin guards that he normally wore dredging, just in case he uncovered the rattlesnake during his digging and rock moving. I wasn’t convinced they were going to provide enough protection.
The research I did for “Gold in the Slate Creek Basin” (September 2011 issue) found me chasing a channel out of the LaPorte territory headed towards the old mining town of Brandy City, California.
One of the first minerals most prospectors learn to recognize is quartz, because, in the right circumstances, it can be an excellent indicator mineral for prospectors. Quartz is common, easy to identify, and is often associated with gold and other valuable metal deposits.
Gold and jade are actually only minor mineral resources for the Northwestern Alaska region as a whole. Modern prospecting has focused more on base metal than precious metal resources.
These days they employ the use of metal detectors and carefully scan the shattered rocks, hoping to hear that sound we detectorists love to hear.
The Bawl Mill • Ask The Experts: What is a Spanish needle? • Ask The Experts: Sulfides and fluxes • Legislative and Regulatory Update • Simple Rules of Gold Geology: Comparing Epithermal and Mesothermal Deposits • The Goldfield Mining District, Nevada—Part II • Sunset Sunbaker • A Prospecting Adventure in Mexico • Critical Minerals: Tungsten • Police Urge Author to End Treasure Hunt • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices