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Nugget hunting in Carrizozo, NM area?


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I'm heading out to Cloudcroft next week and thought I might try my hand at nugget shooting while there with my Fisher Gold Bug. From what I have been able to tell the Jicarilla Mountains might be a place to hunt. Any suggestions?

John,

The area, Jacarilla Mountains, is heavily claimed. Do a google search and look up a fellow by the name of Jerry Fennell (watchdoog) if he's still out with us. He can tell you more about the place since he had mined it for many years and could probably provide a good story or two.

Gary

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The GPAA has a claim about 5 miles (the mining guide says 3) from Ancho. There is a flat area by Rico Gulch where you could park or camp but watch for thunder storms as it could flood according to Watchdog. There is a box canyon to the right just after you cross the cattle guard that is ideal for tent camping and has protection. GPS coord. are right on. There is a lot of claimed land but if you can contact Watchdog he might give you written permission to go on some of his claims. I think he lived in Soccorrow last I heard. He has fought the Forest Service for years to keep the area open for mining.

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The GPAA has a claim about 5 miles (the mining guide says 3) from Ancho. There is a flat area by Rico Gulch where you could park or camp but watch for thunder storms as it could flood according to Watchdog. There is a box canyon to the right just after you cross the cattle guard that is ideal for tent camping and has protection. GPS coord. are right on. There is a lot of claimed land but if you can contact Watchdog he might give you written permission to go on some of his claims. I think he lived in Soccorrow last I heard. He has fought the Forest Service for years to keep the area open for mining.

Is that the "Against the Wind " claim, NM-9? If so, it shows Wilson Tanks at the northern edge. According to my Delorme it is about 4 straight line miles from Ancho. My mining guide says two miles - someone's odometer wasn't working!

BTW, I got a NEW Pick and Shovel the other day which I've already misplaced. It is the only one I've received in the three years I've been a member.

Thanks for the info, I'll give it a try. This time of year it is probably cooler than the Orogrande claim (Old Dry Placer, NM-8).

I'll let y'all know what I find even if it is just lead.

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Guest bedrock bob

The Jicarillas are mostly just fine gold. Lots of it but very few nuggets to speak of.

There were some fellows on Bonita Creek over by Ruidoso that had some nuggets on claims there. They would let folks prospect for a daily fee. That is probably the best chunky gold near Cloudcroft. The American Mining Company I believe.

The Jicarilla (Ancho area) and the Jarilla (Orogrande) are different areas, 200 miles apart. Fine gold and lots of it in the Jicarilla. Coarse gold and nuggets in the Jarilla. Either spot takes some research as the land situation is difficult.

There is a fellow on this forum that has many claims in the Jicarillas. Maybe he will speak up. Check out the El Paso GPAA for the Jarilla (Orogrande) area. They have a fairly good claim there.

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  • 9 years later...

Hello Bedrock Bob, and all. I am in El Paso and  very interested in finding nuggets in Jarilla Mountains near Orogrande NM. I finaly picked up the Minelab GPZ 7000, and cant wait to get out there! I would love to hear from those who have experiance in hunting this area or others near by. What tips and recommendations do you all have? I have searched the internet and cant seem to find any info on nugget shooting for this area. Any help would greatly be appreciated! I would also like to meet any nugget shooters from my area.

God Bless!

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 3/6/2019 at 10:39 AM, Fist Full of Gold said:

Hello Bedrock Bob, and all. I am in El Paso and  very interested in finding nuggets in Jarilla Mountains near Orogrande NM. I finally picked up the Minelab GPZ 7000, and cant wait to get out there! I would love to hear from those who have experience in hunting this area or others near by. What tips and recommendations do you all have? I have searched the internet and cant seem to find any info on nugget shooting for this area. Any help would greatly be appreciated! I would also like to meet any nugget shooters from my area.

God Bless!

"Check out the El Paso GPAA for the Jarilla (Orogrande) area. They have a fairly good claim there" 

Probably a good starting place to get oriented to the area, at least until you get the "lay of the land" . . .

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On ‎3‎/‎6‎/‎2019 at 10:39 AM, Fist Full of Gold said:

Hello Bedrock Bob, and all. I am in El Paso and  very interested in finding nuggets in Jarilla Mountains near Orogrande NM. I finaly picked up the Minelab GPZ 7000, and cant wait to get out there! I would love to hear from those who have experiance in hunting this area or others near by. What tips and recommendations do you all have? I have searched the internet and cant seem to find any info on nugget shooting for this area. Any help would greatly be appreciated! I would also like to meet any nugget shooters from my area.

God Bless!

How's it going FFOG? I am sorry I did not see your post until now. 

I have not been in the Jarillas in several years. There are lots of good claims and lots of coarse gold. It is a great spot to hunt nuggets. 

You need to get the land ownership down. There is a guy there in Orogrande that has the latest scoop on the claims situation. I am told he has a few claims himself and is a good fellow. I have never met him but a buddy of mine has been poking around over there and has had good luck. He is not hard to find... I think he has a building there in Orogrande with a little business of some kind. Just ask around, there are only a half dozen people living there. 

I know the El Paso GPAA has a few very good claims there. Many years ago the guy that started that club and I were friends. His name was Norman Bliss. We researched all that area and the club wound up getting a couple fantastic claims right off the main road. I have heard they have more in an area several miles to the NW. I bet the El Paso GPAA has a website that you could get some info on. It would definitely be worth joining that club because the claims are very good. Nice gold.

There is lots of good ground there with detectable gold you are just going to have to talk to people and find some inroads. I wish I could give you more current info but it has been so long since I have been there. The fellows I used to prospect with back then have all passed or gone to greener pastures. The one fellow that I know that still haunts the place I have not seen for a decade. So that is about all the info I have on the place.

Good luck FFOG! Let me know what you find out. If you decide to head up the valley to the Caballos or Hillsboro let me know. Maybe we can get together and find a few some afternoon!

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