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Lanny in AB

Dig, dig--miss, miss--Booyah!

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Hi there,

Just a quick little story from this summer's prospecting adventures. Two semi-cheechako's (semi-greenhorns/semi-pro rookies) were visiting the claim this summer. They are both nice, budding prospectors with a knack for finding the noble metal. They were working a patch of fractured bedrock that had produced consistent flake-gold and pickers the previous summer. Both of them had spent time with me on previous trips at this spot, and they'd learned a few tricks about how to find the gold.

Well, semi-cheechako one really went to town cleaning off the overburden on that bedrock--the cobbles, the clay, the boulders, the gravel--he went hard at it, working a couple of feet right down to the bedrock. It was a lot of sweaty work. Let me tell you, there were some big old boulders jammed into that bedrock. After he'd removed all the bigger stuff, and when he got done scraping everything off, he ran his takin's through a little sluice, and he had a respectable catch of some nice bright-yellow flake gold, all riding company with a few chunky pickers.

Not long after that, semi-cheechako two came along with his detector, and he asked number one if he could detect the bedrock he'd just cleaned off. Number one said he had no problem with that, as he'd carefully cleared the cracks and crevices already. He told number two to have at 'er. So, number two ran his detector along the bedrock and got a nice signal that really screamed! You see, it was a sassy little nugget right along the surface, just hiding in plain sight, cleverly disguised in some muddy clay!

Well, number one really went all Trojan after that--he cleared off another four feet of bedrock, man did the dirt and rock fly! It took him a long time, and he really made sure each and every crevice was scraped extra clean--including any clay stuck on the bedrock (he's a quick study). As before, he had a nice take of gold in his sluice-box. Number two came along one more time and asked if he could detect the bedrock again. Number one, being very confident he'd gotten all of the gold this time, graciously gave his consent.

Budding prospector number two ran his detector over the bedrock and got a nice soft signal out of a crevice. Number one was getting nervous. Number two got out his pick and broke off some perpendicular sheets of bedrock and scanned again--the signal was much louder now. He cleaned the crevice out, portioned the dirt until only the signal remained--dropped it on the coil, splashed a little water on it to remove the clay, and there with all the attitude of the unbridled wilderness-world sat a nice, sassy, butter-yellow pumpkin-seed-sized nugget! To say that number one was not a happy camper is to use understatement on steroids (strangely enough, things went flying-- dark words were given vibrant colors--nature's gentler creatures headed for higher ground--you get the picture); but, eventually number one was a good sport about it--he had given his permission after all--so, as you can imagine, they both had some great stories to tell back in camp that night--painful though it was for number one to do so. And now--only a scant five months later--they both have a good laugh when they tell the story. I'm thinking number one may be investing in a metal detector soon, and scanning his own bedrock! :rolleyes:

All the best,

Lanny

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Gosh Lanny in AB, if'n I remember right we exchanged e-mails years ago... I'm glad to see

you are posting more great stories... Best.. Jim Straight

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Guest bedrock bob

What a great story! It is a familiar one!

Why is the guy that has the back to dig the hole always the one with no detector? And Ol number two just sits in the shade and watches him dig I'll bet...

Bedrock Bob

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Well to me, it just shows that there are many ways to get at the Gold. Both work! Both found Gold......I am always happy to be either one of them....

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:thumbsupanim Bottom line, as always, the machine is only as good as the man behind it,and one was very lacking. tons a au 2 u 2 N free Canada LNAB-John :yuk-yuk:
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Ahhh, Lanny -- that brings back sweet memories. Sooo right on! Thanks for sharing and taking me back along a humbling learning curve we all likely have traveled maybe more than we care to admit.

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Brings back that old prospectors saying;

"a man should always scan his own bedrock."

Flak

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Gosh Lanny in AB, if'n I remember right we exchanged e-mails years ago... I'm glad to see

you are posting more great stories... Best.. Jim Straight

Jim--it's nice to hear from you again too. I hope you're still out there getting the gold--you gave me lots of great advice, and taught me some excellent tactics with your written word when I was learning how to find nuggets many moons ago. Thanks again.

All the best,

Lanny

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What a great story! It is a familiar one!

Why is the guy that has the back to dig the hole always the one with no detector? And Ol number two just sits in the shade and watches him dig I'll bet...

Bedrock Bob

I'm not sure why it works that way either--but a mistake ceases to be a mistake when you learn from it, and hopefully number one will get a good gold detector!

All the best,

Lanny ;)

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Well to me, it just shows that there are many ways to get at the Gold. Both work! Both found Gold......I am always happy to be either one of them....

You've got that right! And, they were both happy with the gold they got; moreover, number one sure seemed to think about how to get the gold a lot more after that outing. :grr01:

All the best,

Lanny

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:thumbsupanim Bottom line, as always, the machine is only as good as the man behind it,and one was very lacking. tons a au 2 u 2 N free Canada LNAB-John :yuk-yuk:

Hey John--nice to hear from you again. Are you still out there gettin' the gold?

All the best,

Lanny

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Ahhh, Lanny -- that brings back sweet memories. Sooo right on! Thanks for sharing and taking me back along a humbling learning curve we all likely have traveled maybe more than we care to admit.

No problem, and you're most welcome. I don't know about you, but I get re-humbled each and every year when I'm out huntin' the gold quite a few times. I'm always learning, and only realize every time I learn something new just how much more there is to learn about prospecting!

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Brings back that old prospectors saying;

"a man should always scan his own bedrock."

Flak

Nice quote Flak--I've even been nailed by it myself--after I thought I'd done a great job of scanning the bedrock I'd worked so hard to uncover!!

All the best,

Lanny

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Gosh Lanny... I learned from you!... I have thought of you over the years and wondered how you are doing... 

Thanks for remembering me... You will find many old friends also using this Forum...

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Welcome home Lanny....

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Welcome home Lanny....

Many thanks for the kind welcome Bill!

All the best,

Lanny

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Here's a shot taken in the same general area where the nuggets came from (can't sell the farm now, can I!). This picture is taken by some still-standing buildings very near some old hydraulic workings where there's all kinds of exposed bedrock, along with the accompanying detritus of mining and people: brass boot tacks, copper and iron wire, blasting caps, links from various sizes of chain, bits of lead and solder from tinned food and drink cans, pieces of cable, black-powder shot and big-bore slugs; as well as, round and square nails of all sizes--you get the picture. (Can you spot the shotgun slung over my right shoulder that I have to pack while I'm out detecting?)

All the best,

Lanny

post-278-126353691115_thumb.jpg

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Ok I give up Lanny....guess I'm the only dense one left....where is AB?? :???:

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Ok I give up Lanny....guess I'm the only dense one left....where is AB?? :???:

I've wondered that too. Here are my guesses...

Al Berta

Ala Bama

Al Bania

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Hi Lanny

My guess is Arapahoe Basin.

Did I win???? Kidding!

Thanks for the great stories.

Herb

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Home to one of the planet's largest black-gold oil reserves--Alberta is the right guess: bordered by British Columbia on the West, and Montana to the south--smack dab in the heart of the land of the chosen frozen this time of year. Most of our yellow gold is flour gold, but Montana and British Columbia have a wonderful share of nuggets and chunky gold--and both are right next door, so I never have to travel too far to chase the gold. Although I have chased it as far north as Alaska, and as far south as Arizona, I spend most of my time closer to home in the Rocky Mountains, trying to tease Mother Nature into giving up some of her age-old secrets: sometimes she grants me a short mining lease, and other times she puts me on a short mining leash!

All the best,

Lanny

P.S. Thanks to all for your kind comments about the stories, and thanks for the wild guesses as to what AB stood for--I'm surprised no one guessed Antarctica bound!

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(Have to go heavily armed where I detect--nature's biggest furry, clawed and toothed creatures are a mite too plentiful in this gold country!)

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Morning Lanny...I almost guessed Africa bound after Nubin's post....is the 12 ga. for bears

or desperate women???

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Morning Lanny...I almost guessed Africa bound after Nubin's post....is the 12 ga. for bears

or desperate women???

British Columbia abounds with beautiful women, and I've never been attacked while nugget hunting. So, maybe those 3-inch magnum rifled-slugs are keeping me safe--I just don't know?!? I hadn't really thought that one through before. But, now that you've brought it to my conscious level, it must be the reason I've been safe from all of those beautiful women for all of these happy hunting years of detecting!

post-278-1263684295_thumb.jpg

Well done Garimpo.

All the best,

Lanny

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Dumb, dumb, and dumber.

A while back, when I was first learning how to hunt nuggets with the incredible 2100, I was in an area, way up north, that had some of the hottest bedrock I’ve ever come across in my life—black graphite schist. I’d tried a bunch of detectors and none of them would handle that rock—the entire goldfield was infused with it—so it wasn’t like you could find very many places to hunt where you didn’t have to deal with it.

Now, a couple of memories surface in connection with this hunt, and one involves a huge sheet of this bedrock that was part of the road into a claim where I found a stunningly beautiful 6 gram nugget that ran at 92% fine! It had the most character of any nugget I’ve ever found, but that’s another story, and I digress, as I usually do in one of my gold reminiscing moods.

This sheet of mother rock, as I’ve stated was part of the road. I’ll back up for just a minute to give a few details about the drive into this claim. We had to take an old logging road to get in, and as we’d never been there before, we were following verbal directions given to us by the miners that had the lease on the claim. So, we got about half way up this canyon and that road turned downright hairy! There were lots of places where we scraped bottom and this was in a high clearance Dodge diesel 4X4. In fact, it got so bad, my partner wanted to turn around, if only he could have found a spot to do so. The road was bordered on the high side by huge pines, fir, and balsam—it was in an area with a lot of mature trees. The sunlight did its “golden rays filtering through the treetops” light show at regular intervals and ravens and humming birds made regular appearances. However, the downside of the road was not a friendly encounter at all, and we had to be alert at every turn in the road, as we were completely unfamiliar with the terrain.

Well, we finally got to where we could see an excavation in the distance and all at once the road had, what I can best describe as, a small lake in it. The water extended for about thirty feet. Now, we took the outside edge of that hole, keeping one wheel riding the rim of that steep slope. We got through, but the driver’s side dipped way down into the water and it was a close thing. Regardless, we got to that excavation I’ve mentioned, an old open-pit placer operation where a large drift mine had been opened. As fate would have it, there was a caretaker there—this area was remote.

His mouth dropped open at seeing us, and he asked us how we’d gotten in. We told him about our sketchy ride in and then he questioned us about the watery stretch on the road. We told him how we’d negotiated it, and he went on to explain how lucky we’d been. The week before, they’d driven one of those huge British Army Surplus six-wheel drives into the middle of that hole, sunk it up to the box, and had to bring in a D-8 to pull it out! We just looked at him and shook our heads, glad that somehow we’d straddled the lip and stayed upright. After a few more exchanges of greetings and updates on the news of the outside world, we got additional directions on how to reach the claim. We headed uphill again, the grade was now quite extreme, and we came to the sheet of bedrock I’ve mentioned.

It formed the middle of the road for about twenty-five feet. I had my partner pull over so I could detect it with the Minelab. I got square nail after square nail, all of medium size and down. Let me tell you, that ground was hot—I could only run the machine by flipping the switch to access just one side of the electronics. That black hotbed was stepped up like a stairway carved from stone—it had natural traps all over it. I wasn’t very experienced at the time and I quickly came to the conclusion that this place had only trapped square nails, now that I reflect on it, I repeatedly wonder what I left behind. I only detected a fraction of that sheet as I was in a hurry to get to the claim! Hindsight is often a cruel master of delayed recognition and missed opportunities—no one with a VLF had detected that rock—it was far too extreme. I’m sure I left gold—the area was loaded with it, and those square nails were a sure sign it hadn’t been cleaned.

Not too long afterwards, we came to an excavation that someone had dug right beside the road. They’d moved some big boulders and had hit bedrock at about the eight-foot level. The bottom of the hole was filled with water and all around its perimeter was piled the muck from the bottom of the hole. I made a mental note to detect it on the way out. After a bit, we reached the claim. There were hand-stacked cobbles and boulders all over the bedrock that bordered the creek. I detected quite a bit of area and only came away with some lead meat-tin keys, some brass boot eyelets, coat fasteners, lead sealing’s from 1800’s tin cans, bits of rusted metal from a variety of source materials, some wire brush bristle bits, and of course, the ubiquitous square nails of all sizes. I finally got out of the creek proper and detected some test pits and found the gorgeous six-gram nugget I alluded to earlier, but as I expressed earlier, that’s another self-contained story.

I found another test pit that was filled with water, and for some inexplicable reason—didn’t detect the throw out piles! (When I got back to camp, the miners with the lease on the claim informed me that they’d taken a great sample of corn-kernel-sized gold from that hole!! Dumb me, dumb, dumb, dumb!) However dumb I was, on the way out, I stopped to detect the throw out material of the hole I’d spotted on the way in. The detecting started out with me getting a huge signal off a massive hot rock—one of those grey-lead wonders—it was the size of a watermelon, and was lodged under a boulder. Then the usual suspects revealed themselves, square nails, bits of tin can, and pieces of copper and iron wire. But then, I got a sweet signal right on the top of a throw out pile. It was a bright and sassy four-gram heart-shaped nugget—my Sister-in-law still has it. Her husband has promised to make it into a necklace pendant for her.

I stubbed around there for another hour and a half, sticking to the rim of that excavation, and I pulled out two other smaller nuggets, one just under three grams, and one just over two. They were round nuggets, very typical of the gold in that area—it’s just not hammered at all. In fact, when you’re panning in the streams you have to be very careful as the nuggets will roll right past all of the riffles in those green gold pans!!

On the way out, we stopped and said goodbye to the caretaker, and were very careful to stay on the high side of that lake in the road. That afternoon, we detected another spot down by a lake and had a good hunt, but that’s a story for another day.

All the best,

Lanny

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