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Prospecting & Detecting

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Stories, tips & tricks

Companion Gold


Easing around the bedrock ledges and rock hopping, Terry and I came out into the open and were looking at a nice run of bedrock.

The Smell of Gold—Part I


Some claim they can smell gold. This may be, but when I take a whiff of gold, I smell dirt, rotten eggs, garlic or just nothing: my nose is everything but sensitive.

A Few Tips and Tricks for Beach Mining


When you think about the extremes to which a miner will go to get a little gold, it occurred to me beach gold could be "easy pickings."
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Moore Creek, Alaska—Then and Now


The gold was very chunky and much of it had quartz attached. Even back then I knew that the gold was very close to its source.

Nome Offshore Dredging Creates Challenges


The Alaska state government has been trying to keep up with and maybe even stay on top of the situation by studying the problems associated with rapid growth and how to solve them.

Key to Successful Prospecting: Confidence


The one undeniable truth in prospecting is that the more time you spend in the field, the more gold you will find. Here are a few keys I use to help build my confidence.
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Piggin' for Gold


Take a look at the picture—it’s pretty simple and you can build it yourself.

Ask The Experts


• Making a noisy dredge more quiet

Exploring Snakehead


On our fourth trip, we finally reached the top edge of the old hydraulic pit, and it was monstrous.
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Prospecting for Gold in Baja California


It was one of those awkward situations as we walked, fatigued and too thirsty to speak a word.

Tips for Detecting Nugget Patches


Certainly many other successful nugget hunters have mentioned these methods; hopefully I can add to or clarify these methods.

Just Another Ordinary Weekend


There was no evidence that anyone else had ever worked this gully with the exception of some old sample piles near the foot of the ravine.
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Getting A Successful Start in Metal Detecting for Gold


Once you have a detector, learn how to use it and get out in the field—you can’t find anything with it in your garage.

Thinking Outside The Creek


Imagine for a minute the year is 1850. You’ve read and heard that gold was discovered in California and the creeks are so rich you can just scoop it up with your hands.

Ask the Experts


• Drones for the independent prospector
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Metal Detector Testing Methods


It will not be any easier than on your table at home, and so testing a very small test target like the ballpoint pen can tell you immediately if a detector is suitable for looking for tiny gold nuggets.

Prospecting for Surface Flood Gold Placers on Low and Intermediate Gradient Streams


Sample panning is a very important method used to find the richest parts of a flood gold deposit before setting up equipment and running material.

Introduction to Meteorites


The distribution of meteorites across the planet was, at one time, thought to be random and unpredictable.
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Return to Chicken, Alaska


I figured it would be quite conservative of me to shoot for about four ounces of gold instead of the twelve ounces I had found in 2013.

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.

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