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Prospecting & Detecting

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Stories, tips & tricks

Miners Fight Back When BLM Says 'Your Claim Is Too Long'


BLM stated we had 30 days to amend our claim so that it fit within one 40-acre square or we would forfeit the claim.

It's Another 'Ben Day'


I looked over and saw Ben on his knees, digging at the edge of the Manzanitas, almost underneath them. I thought back to the previous weekend when we were planning this trip—that day had been a “Ben day.”

How to Research Prospecting Locations and Mining Claims


If you are interested in researching mining claims for any purpose, you will first have to decipher the BLM’s LR2000, a Rube Goldberg database seemingly designed by a 1980s Soviet-era computer hacker.

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Some Tips and Tricks for Dredgers: Determining Pulley Size and Belt Length


If Epd is larger, then the compressor will be spinning faster than the manufacturer’s maximum specified RPM and might destroy itself. If this happens, then the compressor again might not produce enough air to support a diver. Neither is a desired outcome.

Holcomb Valley Gold, Southern California


The first time I found gold in the creek here is when I decided to try a new place to drywash on a hill not far from the dirt path I was on.

How to Turn Your Gold Finds Into Cash


Even if you are not ready to cash in right now, it might be good to evaluate your options and make a plan of action so when that day comes you know exactly what to do.

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My First Gold Patch


After finding little specks and occasionally little nuggets all season, I had finally reached something economical and interesting! This had never happened before along the Pellice Valley in Italy.

The Potholes—California’s Oldest Known Mining District


Every time we prospected here we found gold, sometimes some really coarse flakes, but no large nuggets (yet).

The Mid-Winter Nugget


Some of the gold is placer that was beat up as it traveled; however, quite a bit of the gold is pocket gold that is running along the surface in this area.

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Gold In The Midwest—Part III: Iowa, Missouri, and Kansas


In this continuation of the Midwest gold series we are going to take a look at the states of Iowa, Missouri, and Kansas, look at possible locations within these states to find gold and talk about areas where gold has been found in the past.

Time to Stake Your Own Mining Claim


So let’s dive in and see what I can do to convince you that this is the year you should be out staking your own claims.

A Day On The Yuba River


There weren’t as many pieces of gold, but what I did find was bigger. As I worked my way down towards the spot that I had been working the first three days, I noticed a large crack that crossed the river.

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Charles P. Watson, Chief Geologist

Determining The Optimal Crushing Size for Gravity Recovery


It’s not easy to figure out what is best without testing, and so a certain level of confusion has developed about how small the ore ought to be crushed.

To Foam or Not to Foam


George was considering filling his dredge floats with closed-cell foam, ensuring that there would be no area available within each float for flooding.

Following Man-Made Ditches to Recover More Gold


Because of multiple take-out points along a ditch line, the ditches themselves become a wealth of knowledge to us present-day miners.

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Sixteen to One Gold Mine: Going Underground - Pt II


We descended hunched over, down a long, steep, wooden staircase to the 1,000-level.

All About Native Silver


Some of the wire forms are strange and fantastic, with wires sticking out in twisted, seemingly random directions. Others have deformed crystals and all of them have significant value to collectors.

Internet Forum Gold


I made my way up past where I left off and the wash was going to end in about 100 feet. It was then I got a sweet signal.

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Gold In The Midwest—Part II: Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio


In this article, I am going to take a look at three Midwest states and go through some of the prime places for prospectors to find nice local gold there.

21st Century American Gold Rush: Rare Earth Elements


The burning question I needed answered was why didn’t the deposit ever get mined of at least one of the valuable minerals? A couple of reasons have come to light.

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