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Gold Guide.....

Here's How to Find Gold!

1. Spend as much time as possible scouting the property. Noting such important features as topography, thickness of alluvial cover (soil, sand & gravel cover), types of rock float found in washes and of course quartz, especially rusty, iron stained quart or rusty, copper stained quartz float. Often you may find specks of visible gold in these rusty quartz specimens, a very good clue indeed.

2. Look for exposed bedrock in the washes, not just any bedrock but rough, ragged bedrock with deep crevices or fractures that will trap the gold as the heavy minerals are washed downstream by heavy rain storms. Probably the ideal setting is where the wash makes a sharp turn and widens, so that any gold traveling downstream will slow at that point and drop out or be deposited on the inside turn or curve.

gold bar

3. Try to locate several of these areas before you begin testing. Some of you may ask why? Why not test that first good looking spot that you find? Well my answer to that is simple enough. Let us say that you test the first spot that you locate and find some gold. You will probably hang in there and work the area to death, right? You might be recovering pe

nnies, when with a little extra testing you might be recovering dollars with the same amount of effort, fifty feet away. Now let us say that you spend the extra time and identify at least three promising areas. You test Area A and find a lot of fine gold but no nuggets. You test Area B and find nothing and finally Area C produces several small nuggets and some fine gold. Which area would you spend some extra time? My guess is that you would work Area C until you run out of gold, Right? Remember that one small nugget might be equivalent to hundreds or even thousands of specks of fine or flour gold.

4. Now I will contradict myself with this revelation. The two largest nuggets that I've ever found were not found on bedrock. In fact the largest was found at least ten feet above bedrock with a metal detector. So I guess the old saying that "gold is where you find it" still applies. But to increase your odds, test bedrock first.

5. Remember that there is false bedrock. False bedrock might be cemented or compacted gravels, caliche or even impervious layers of clay. Gold and other heavy minerals will work their way down until they hit bedrock or false bedrock. At that point gold accumulates (under ideal conditions) in what we call "pay streaks".

6. If all you have is a metal detector, start with the bedrock theory and then work up stream, up slope and even test the tops of hills or ridges if your in gold country.nugget found next to quarter for size comparison

7. Always, and I mean always check the heavy concentrates in your pan even if you see no gold. Carry a good quality magnifying glass (hand lens) for this purpose. Check for black sands and especially for iron pyrite cubes. Black sands and pyrite cubes are an indicator that gold might be there. I often find placer gold associated with pyrite cubes. Ideally both black sands and pyrite cubes are a good clue, especially with a lot of rusty quartz float in the area.

8. We occasionally get a lot of rain here in western Arizona, which may be considered either good or bad. Heavy rains have filled potholes in bedrock creating miniature reservoirs. This is good. Great places to do your test panning without having to lug water. But the bad side is that it will take days of warm, windy weather to dry out the gravels for dry washer testing. The fast high waters in the washes have undoubtedly uncovered areas never exposed before, uncovering nuggets and pay streaks and relocating them. I’m guessing that some fabulous discoveries will be made this year, of course they may not all make the local newspapers as some prospectors are very secretive.

9. I have spent as many as six long back breaking days straight with pan, trowel, pick, shovel and whisk broom cleaning out crevices and cracks with no luck. I’ve also gotten lucky the very first hour and consequently recovered over sixteen ounces before lunch. a nice mornings work.

10. Remember that you will not find gold every where you dig, no matter how good the claim is. Placer gold values are generally very erratic, forming or occurring in those much sought after pay streaks. Play detective and seek out the clues that mother nature has provided and you may be well rewarded for your efforts.

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