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Went up LSD way today for some sampling:

What I learned today.

1)GPS is great for finding remote places.

2)My 4-wheel drive truck won't go everywhere.

3) Scorpions hide under rocks.

4) All kinds of critters hide under rocks.

5) Dirt and sand on top of bedrock is slippery when on a steep hill while hauling 5-gallon buckets of dirt. 6) The average weight of a 5 gallon bucket full of dirt is 70 LBS.

7) 200 yards is a long ways to carry 6-5 gallon buckets of dirt weighing 70 LBS.

8) Cholla cactus sucks when stuck in your fingers when pulling it out of your leg.

9) Panning samples can wait till tomorrow. :th:

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.

Went up LSD way today for some sampling:

What I learned today.

1)GPS is great for finding remote places.

2)My 4-wheel drive truck won't go everywhere.

3) Scorpions hide under rocks.

4) All kinds of critters hide under rocks.

5) Dirt and sand on top of bedrock is slippery when on a steep hill while hauling 5-gallon buckets of dirt. 6) The average weight of a 5 gallon bucket full of dirt is 70 LBS.

7) 200 yards is a long ways to carry 6-5 gallon buckets of dirt weighing 70 LBS.

8) Cholla cactus sucks when stuck in your fingers when pulling it out of your leg.

9) Panning samples can wait till tomorrow. :th:

Interesting list of stuff. Thanks, I hope to be down that way in a couple of weeks and will keep it in mind. Here in WA state the dirt is ususally pretty wet and I've always used 85-90 lbs/buvket. Never actually weighed it though. I gave up on the 5 gal buckets and use the 3 gal ones for that reason. Oh, and it is very slippery in the streams here with the rocks worn to look like bowling or basketballs and covered with moss and slime. Thanks again for your list.

OlneyCreekWA004.jpg

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Nice way to get some 2 gallon buckets...

go to your local Walmart or grocery store with a bakery. Play nice with the bakery.folks and ask them if they have or can save you their icing and toppings buckets.

Strong little suckers with good lids and they smell great for a while

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Yup SLNugget, You haven't lived till you've done the slime rock dance,hopeing you don't break anything inportant while your feet are REALLY busy trying to find a spot without slime to get traction. All in a fraction of a second. Been on my butt way to many times. Find it easier to bushwhack through the Devils Club than walk Slime Creek!! :rolleyes:

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Hey Sledge, now I know this might sound a little crazy, but did ya ever concider the idea that you ain't got to fill that 5 gal. bucket all the way to the top. Maybe just put 2 gal. worth of dirt in it and just leave the remaining space full of air, it probably wont be so heavy from there on out, I don't know, just a crazy thought.

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I was thinkin that 5 gal is one helluva lot to call a sample, too. But to each his own.

When I first got started, it was my goal to bring back as many buckets full as possible. I also wasn't too bright and only brought back what I found where black sand existed. Heck, I even filled a 17 gal tote without even running a single test pan. That tote broke free in the bed of my truck during a panic stop and put the front of my bed against the cab, splitting the weld at the bed floor.

And not a speck of gold in all 17 gallons :(

Now I barely bring back a couple pans full without knowing there's gold in it. If I find some, then out come the 5 gallon buckets and back breaking treks :)

Good luck, and I hope you have an ounce in each bucket, seriously!

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Glenn & All, I moved to the bakery buckets a long time ago! I used to use a Samauri as my prospecting truck, I coucd haul 13 5 gallon buckets if I left about 6"of space in each.

Look at the bottom of your buckets buy the ones that have .070 to .090 MILS listed on the bottom for thickness. Number them with a magic marker to ID dirt from different places.

Good list but put # 1 to be Never sit on the ground in the desert !!

You can fall a long way down one of those creeks !

Max

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I never was big on hauling a ton of dirt by hand. I always managed to haul 40 lbs of drywasher in and only took it and the gold back out.

That is the beauty of that hand crank drywasher. Easy to pack around and sample and it'll do a couple yards a day easy. No reason to carry a bunch of buckets around when you can just set that thing down and run a bucket through it in a couple of minutes. And the way the table is on most of them you can see the results of your test without having to pan out a bunch of concentrates. They will put 90% right there so you can just pick it up dry and put it in a vial if you want. They sure do a neat job and you can test a couple of tons of dirt a day and never have to carry more than a little wood puffer machine.

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Dawned on me that some of you Dessert dwellers may not know what Devils club is. It is a Plant that grows around W. Washington, Ore. B.C. and AK.. My DAD called it HANDY BUSH. The stalks have a thorn that is very brittle and fine. Break off easy. Dad said if you fall and reach to grab something they will move so thats what HANDY to grab, hence the name. The fine thorns are real hard to remove cause they keep breaking off. Real Fun.

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Thanks GlenM on info for bakery buckets and your suggestion Gilaoro on the bucket and methods. Rockhunter we were just there to do a quick sampling and only had 3 hours to do it. I numbered the buckets with 1 inch rocks thrown in after classifying to 1/4 inch to identify each bucket and wrote the gps and a brief description of each area we sampled. We put 3-4 samplings in each bucket keeping each one separate with a rag. We were able to cover a lot of ground this way and are just now starting to pan samples. Hopefully we'll find something. Thanks again all for your comments, just thought I'd give you all a smile or snicker for a day. :brows: :brows: Bakery buckets are a great alternative idea.

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Not sure if a smile came back to my face upon remembering my earlier days of 'sampling'

True story:

One time my buddy (who shall remain nameless) went out "prospecting"

We were in his then bird poop yellow Yota and driving up what was near some really good gold country. We had no real plan, and even less skill for prospecting it would seem. I say that because all we had were 5gal buckets, shovels, and a couple screens.

We would truck along up this wash and see black sand. Mind you my pal likes to play Mario Andretti sometimes, and it was my job to look for places of interest as they zoomed by. I was starting to get car sick for the first time in my life!

Well, we thought we would be able to find a single spot and fill all those buckets - there were at least ten - with good, gold-laden dirt. Mind you, this dirt was only that which also had black sand in it, and was itself sand in the edges of the wash.

Well, we would get some dirt and realize we had gotten all the black sand, but still had plenty of room in the buckets. A real dellima as we both lived at least 1.5 hrs away from the gold fields and didn't want to come back with a measly 1/2 gallon in each bucket.

So we had the ingenious idea to add more samples into each bucket and separate them with something. But we had nothing that would work unless we started shedding tools, car parts, or clothes. Tools wasn't happening. We both wanted to see our wives again, so the car parts were out. And neither of us wanted to see the other naked. What to do? We decided to use whatever we could find near where we found our high value black sand!

So, our separators wound up being a 2" or larger rock, piece of wood on the ground, etc other detritus. I would mark a way point in my GPS and give it a name describing whatever I used to separate my rich sand. :)

Now, recall that I told you my partner in bumbling likes to play the part of an Andretti on the track. What do you think happened to those separators from miles of bumpy trail/wash and then an hour and a half of bumpy highway/city streets?

I can certainly tell you that it is likely what you'd expect. The best parts from that day and the only things of value were:

Got out with a good friend and had fun

Some magnetite (worth something to someone, gotta be)

The fuel we spent on that wild trip

Lesson learned... mostly

I say mostly because we did a similar thing when going back to (what he thought) was the spot where his wife found a specifically named nuggets, by chance. We should take her along more often :)

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Hey Sledge,

glad to see that I am not the only one. I still have 28 full buckets to pan afer carrying them over 380 yards back to the ride. I vowed to never do that again...until the next weekend.

I am in the process of converting a bucket cart over to electric drive. I am using a 6v kids ride on toy for the mechanicals. That way the is no combustion engine involved for dry fire season.

In the meantime I have downsized a little bit for sampling. I have been using the 34 ounce plastic coffee containers with lids. They get more than heavy enough. For marking my buckets I clip wooden clothes pins to the handles. They have numbers written on them for locations with a sharpie and re-usable.

I enjoy working this stuff at home at night. Peace and quiet in the cave.

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