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JUST A FEW THOUGHT'S ON WHERE TO PROSPECT;

The old adage that "Gold is where you find it" is not necessarily true. Prospecting in the better known gold bearing regions will immediately improve your chances of finding gold. Gold is where others have found it and you have come up with a better method of recovering gold

RIVERS & STREAMS
Rivers and Streams become natural collectors of gold, making it a little easier for the average prospector. Gold moves and collects primarily during flood stage. The high fast waters cut away at the banks of the river and carry the gold into the mainstream. Gold being seven times heavier than most other materials will tumble along the bottom of the river and easily come to rest when the current slows along the inside bend of the river or hits a major obstacle such as a boulder.

finding gold

LAKES
During the summer months the water in many lakes recedes making the lake shores easily accessible. While exploring the shoreline, look for streams that may still be flowing and dry washes that may only flow during heavier rains or spring run off.

Prospect thoroughly where the stream enters the lake. If you find any color at the mouth of a stream or dry wash, chances are there is more gold further up the stream

DESERTS AND DRYWASHES

Even though these areas are dry most of the time they do quite often receive torrents of rain which cause flash floods, developing into rapid rivers which easily erodes the soil along the river banks. When these rivers recede, the dry river bed is commonly referred to as a "dry wash". Looking for gold in a dry wash is a lot like looking for gold in a river except you have better access to all areas of the dry wash.

Look for bedrock and crevices in the bedrock. Remember gold only moves during flood stages and tumbles along the bottom because of its weight. In doing so the gold will lodge on or in cracks of the bedrock.

Also look for large boulders that may be firmly anchored in the wash. When the flow of water is disrupted around the boulder, the gold will settle at this spot. A common practice is to place a cargo strap around a boulder and roll it over with the use of a come-along or winch on a 4X4 vehicle. Once the boulder has been moved you can process the material that was around and under the rock. If you can't move a particular rock, be sure to get at the material around its edges. A dry wash may have 10'-20' high sidewalls. Explore these walls for veins of black sand and crevices where gold may have lodged. Warning: Always use caution when moving large rocks or boulders.

finding gold


CULVERTS AND GOLD
Culverts under roadways are a natural trap for gold. The corrugation of the galvanized sheet metal causes a slight turbulence which causes the gold to settle. Process the material collected in the first 3-4 feet of the culvert opening. A plastic gutter scoop which will contour to the shape of the corrugation works well for removing material.

Also check the area to the right, left and below the entry of the culvert. A wide flow will strike the culvert abutments and cause the gold to drop at the mouth.

 

GROUND HOGS AND GOLD
Ground hogs, in search of food and establishing habitat, dig large caverns as deep as six feet below the surface. The materials they dig up will appear as large mounds on the surface, often with a ground hog perched on his hind legs nearby.

These ground hogs are little gold miners; process what they have piled up. If you find some gold, keep processing until you're done then cave in the hole. The next time you are by, there will likely be a entirely new mound to process.

It is common knowledge that the largest strike ever discovered was the Comstock Lode and it was a result of ground hogs digging.

 

TAILINGS FROM OLD MINES
Our early prospectors and miners did not do a very thorough job of recovering gold. In addition when a big strike was made, the general belief was that there was no end to the amount of gold available. These factors contributed to a great amount of gold remaining in mine tailings.

You probably already know where there is an abandoned mine. You can recognize them by the tailings lying on the hillside. You can check with the Bureau of Land Management or Bureau of Mines for more information regarding mines. Warning: Mine shafts are dangerous! Stay away from any openings.

These tailings can be processed wet or dry just as you find them.  If you find a good producer you may want reestablish the claim.

 

 

 

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