The Ups and Downs of Nugget Hunting
April 2017 by Fred MasonI returned to the WSPA claim. Still smug from my previous success, I was thinking I could not fail. However, the gold gods had other plans.
Their rewards were far better than they had anticipated, resulting in one of the best clean-ups they had ever seen.
“Much of the ground where Ms. Hollingshead found her diamond is made of unweathered volcanic rock. When it rains, flowing runoff often leaves loose gravel, and sometimes diamonds, on the surface in these areas.”
In some areas these channels were thousands of feet wide, and just figuring out where you are in some of these diggings is a challenge.
Setting up a gravity dredge
We split up in order to cover a larger area and found good color almost everywhere. The bedrock was shallow on both sides of the river, but the inside bend was where we concentrated our prospecting.
Looking around, I could tell that this was an old hand-digging. As I walked around the perimeter of the digging I could see shovel and pick marks scratched on the clean, hard clay and bedrock.
Old mine workings and tailing piles can represent opportunities on many levels, from the chance to simply find a nugget on up to the commercial reworking of the old tailings for profit.
The Bawl Mill • Legislative and Regulatory Update • Ask The Experts: Is an XRF gun useful for prospecting and mineral identification? • Ask The Experts: Is this deposit worth working? • Ask The Experts: Can a long range locator probe detect gold in quartz? • Weathering, Erosion and Placers • The PIGMI—a DIY Crevice Tool • Diary of a Diamond Prospector • Epithermal Gold and Silver Deposits • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices