Well after shoveling and snow blowing all day I am missing the west. The Southwest actually. The desert of AZ.Today where we live in NH, we got our first snowstorm, for a total of just over a foot of snow. So I am really missing the sunny, dry conditions of the desert southwest.
I know I would miss my birds, what would they do without me? One year when I took off for the west I cut open a 50 lb. bag of sunflower seeds and spread them out under my truck, someone or something had some good meals for the few weeks we were gone. Summer trips we take there are plenty of bugs to eat but in the dead of winter and them being used to having their meals here, it was the least I could do for them , what was $25.
We go for fun.
How many hobbies pay you back, for the time you put in?
With a small scoop and a plastic gold pan you can find this, if you can figure where in a river
it would sit and wait for you to find it. That is the hardest part for some, reading the river.
Just like tying a fly for Trout or Salmon and fly fishing a local river , you cast and let the current
swing it to where the fish are holed up. Gold travels in floods, and moves throughout rivers and streams
and not just in AK or CA.
Times are tough for many right now and it has been around $1700.00 US an Ounce . So if you have
a stream with lots of large rocks or bedrock in it, grab a pan, they are cheap and a spade shovel and
give it a try. You will be outside and in a cool river , on a hot summer day and who knows maybe just maybe
you may find a picker or a nugget!
We take all of that out first, then screen down the dirt till we have fine gold, garnets and black sand
(the same thing that is inside of an Etch-a-Sketch)magnetite.
Remember show me what you find and keep your eyes open for gems too, as they can be found in the same streams.
Good luck out there and have fun in the beautiful outdoors!
from 20 Lines a Day
Our day started very early. Up before the sun. All we had left to do was drive to the special spot and start prospecting for gold. He took the dredge and shovel and 4 buckets. I brought my dog(lol)camera of course)and something for the small propane camping stove. What a Beautiful day it was. We will never forget we had the river to ourselves. Just the hum of a dredge running on a pretty day. While it sucked up what he placed in front of his nozzle, and then up the hose and through the triple sluice box, it held different sizes of GOLD on each level and flushed out the junk(plain rocks,lol) I am going to try to take you through this pretty day along a pretty spot in the river. Maybe you will catch the FEVER, lol Gold Fever.
This is just a two and half in. dredge. This will move small rocks and packed gravel and place it back into the stream for fish to pick through for food and a place for some to lay eggs. We clean out all the lead, from the area he is working in. At the end of the day the place is clean of metal,lead and hopefully GOLD.
The hose is 2 1/2 in. in diameter so we do not take home boulders, or destroy the land we play in, we just enjoy the openness of this river and how it changes month by month. With ever passing storm that brings heavy rains, these boulders roll along and Gold collects in certain spots. It has been since the beginning of time. We just have more ways to search for it than a beaten up pie pan as the 49ers did.
Now that I showed you his equipment let me show you this beautiful spot in Maine.
See that big rock formation it is called Bedrock. It is what we want to see a lot of.
The boulders above are what rolls down the river and eventually flattens out the GOLD into flakes and pickers, we still search for the NUGGETS though, down against bedrock that has been covered for hundreds of years or more.
A tiny feeder brook dumps in to this main river. I comes from a mountain stream high above, which has been filled with winter run off(SNOW) I love following these streams up through the woods with a camera and a gold pan.
Also you know she will be beside us on our journey. He she is tired from so much play. She spent most of the day in the water and loved her day as much as we did. Life is good for two cripples. We take lots of breaks to take in the beauty and rest our injured parts. He feels good in his wet suit sitting in the river but he will pay for days after we get home. I will too from the driving and walking but we need to do something or this is no reason to be here.
On this first day of July we found hundreds of assorted butterflies that spent the day with us, this one spent enough time on our shovel for me to get a few photos to share.
Hope you enjoy our day as much as we did.
His addiction and how it started, Part One
Well he put his order in for a White’s DFX. His dream machine! He had wanted this one from the first time he saw it, at George’s. It was on sale at the time George told him. It came with a nice White’s bag, to keep this machine in and a digging tool and OH Yeah a pin pointer! Don’t these expensive machines tell you where it is? Why a pin pointer? Hang on I know now……….
So we are off, headed back to the coast where he can hardly wait to see how much more he can find with this top of the line, White’s machine. We had to stop and charge the batteries at home, boy another delay for him! He was excited with this purchase and wanted to use it now!
You know about treasure hunting if you are reading this short story, you know there will be times, many in fact that you get no more than change, dirty change to boot!
As we approached the sandy area of Hampton Beach, me with the digger, him with his new toy “The Ultimate Machine” we decided on a direction to walk and as I walked beside him, I could see how happy he was. To me that is all that has ever meant anything to me. I knew he went years in life providing for others, ones who could care less about his feelings, only what this man could do for them. Well we are now together and all I care about is him and his health and I mean overall health. We all need an outlet when in pain, as it is very depressing. So as we walked the beach together, where we had in fact gone on dates, like I said so long ago, and began the search for goodies.
Well I can tell you it was accurate. When it said a penny and we found lots of them, there it was 4 inches down just like the machine read. I would just dig the right amount of sand into our scoop and I could hear the coin banging on the sides of the basket, telling me I had it! We wore aprons we bought from George and I would slide it into a pocket so as to not loose it and continue walking just out of the reach of his swing. When we would get to the end of our row we had decided on, he would then walk in my footprints as I would lay tracks beside him, for the next row. We had a system for sure, others had just gone through with their machines but had missed the coin, we didn’t.
I remember when he got a reading that said .50 cents, I looked up at him and said Ya Right! Well sure enough there were 2 quarters in my basket, having dug down to the proper depth. This machine was good. I loved the day we found our first silver ring. Oh it was my size, imagine that! We continued to use this machine almost daily and I mean daily. Winter, spring, summer and fall, we were out there. We got a lot of comments on how the two of us worked as a team, him swinging and me digging the treasure, his machine said was just laying there, waiting to be found. Many men said they wished their wives would go with them, I laughed and said “Oh well, that’s why, I am just his girlfriend! ” No I understood how they must have felt, having a hobby that the wives and kids could actually go with them and have fun doing and they chose to send them out alone. I saw them watch us and how excited we got when it was a ring and not a nickle.
We went everywhere with this machine. From the northern coast in Maine to Cape Cod, we even took it to Virginia Beach when my Grandmother was not doing to good, so I could say goodbye. We were on the beach, in a motel anyway, so in the early morning hours as well as late at night this is where we were. We found a cool coin there on VA Beach, so it will be a memento of our trip, as well as treasure.
I remember calling George as we went to the Cape and found that they had made the beach a National Seashore, where we were not allowed to metal detect. I asked him if he knew where we could go and he told us and then said “always do the edges of land off limits .” I believe his words were “you can’t fence it all in”. We found a ring that weekend as well. Wow, we were starting to get good at this detecting stuff. Slow and deliberate swings, with headphones on, puts him right on his target, and of course I am always ready with the scoop, to see what he found!
So now instead of HIS addiction, it is OURS. He searches through the want ads for a machine for me, you know just a cheap one, easy to use, well he found an old Minelab a man had for sale 3 hours away(gas was not high like now) and we called and set up a time to go look at it. This man’s Dad had died and he was selling lots of his beloved treasures. We picked up this Sovereign with no books or paperwork, with a few other items and both of them were so happy. When we got home he charged it up and off we went to the beach, we never turns down a chance to go. Now remember I thought I would use this one but no Ron had to test it out first! Well he never uses his Ultimate machine anymore, well that’s not true when we look in parking lots and the like he does because it is so easy to see if it is a penny or quarter or jewelry. It has so many programs he doesn’t even use and now with my trucking injuries I can not swing even this light one long enough to make it worth the trouble and the pain. I say SELL IT!(We didn’t)
Well so now remember we have gone from his $49 Radio Shack one to DFX and now a used Minelab to guess what? A NEW water machine. Yes you know the one! Another Minelab. He uses in the lakes, ponds and streams in search of rings and he finds them! This gets a lot of rest all winter but come warmer temps we hit the water for the newest FINDS, left by visitors! All the while we keep track of the lost and found columns and see if anyone is searching for what we have found. That finishes the story when you can put owner back with their lost items.
OK so now we have what 4 machines and his addiction strikes again, after that trip I wrote about, out to Stanton AZ, last year for the 3 day dig and our stay out there. Well we really do need a machine to find the Gold Nuggets, but I thought a used Gold Bug out there in Wickenburg AZ at Miners Creek would have fit the bill, but no, he had his heart once again set on a Minelab 3500. We called George Streeter once again and tried to place an order but he had bad news for him it was not available, so he just had to get the next best thing! Yes a 4000. I sure hope he finds a lot of gold this winter in NC, GA and of course AZ. Maybe just maybe his addiction is at it’s worst! I have included a photo of him reading his new instruction booklet while setting his new machine up, now I will tell you this when it comes to digging up the gold pieces I will once again be right beside him looking for the pieces the old timers, out in the gold mine areas never found. I will dream of quartz, laced with Gold, just like Ron will with this new machine, oh no I think I have caught his disease!
Well we can grow old together, happily chasing the nuggets and me watching the smile on his face.
Part two on Gold Prospecting coming soon……………………………….