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Old Mexico...


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Just looking at a globe, it sure looks like that would be a dandy place to nugget shoot or prospect. I know there's lot's of problems there but just curious if any here have tried it lately.

Rim

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I have a friend who spent years mining in Mexico. He worked both for large mining cos. and on his own. Mostly placer gold and large areas of untouched land to mine. He definately has stories and is a wealth of information on all aspects of mining.

Sure would be interesting to go but not in these times.

Ed

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Not for me no more. I have friends with extremely expensive homes on the Baja and mainland who will not even go to check on their homes. Narco wars,carjacking and crooked cops give you no protection. I've got dozens a stories from immediate family and friends burned,bummered and ripped off. Stay north of the border-John

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Bed Rock Bob had a few places to go down there. I My Self would not go down there without a Small Army.

At Best I only expect to live 20 more years or so. crap just an't right down there. Don't care who you know.

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It is really not that bad now. i go to northern Chihuahua Just south of antelope wells in the Sierra Rica .

i would not advise anyone to just wander around without. knowing how to get along.

The Sierra madre occidental around Alamos is very. rich and as safe. to visit and poke around.

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They 'Don't need no steenking badges' down there and they sure don't need me. I know guys that lost fishing gear, car parts, etc to Federales who liked it more than they did. I wonder just how much gold ($6,000.00 detector) you could bring back if you were stopped by those 'Banditos'...........

Old Tom :old:

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I spent lot of time in Baja mining, I have friends living there now who has never stopped, BUT you have to know how to get along, in other words someone to show you the ropes.

I quit because I was give out physically and my wife needed knee replacement and just the logistics of living there wears you down.

I never had a problem with a Mexican, only Americans and other nationalities , I built a beach cabin, had a Mexican residential visa and when I was running a "Pay to Dig" for Enrique Meling on the Meling ranch 90 miles S of Ensenada a government picture ID document.

There are a couple of guys lurking on this forum who go down there, one of them has a Mexican brother in law, that's a big +.

Main things that will get you into trouble are: Women, Bar rooms, Hanging around border towns, Not minding your own business, being the smart A-- ugly American who just has to tell someone how we do it in the USA etc. Be respectful as you would want to be respected.

Learn at least enough of the language to be able to say the respectful greetings! For sure most of the people have been to the US and lots of them can speak English and other languages. Do not even get into a conversation about drugs with anyone!!

The money they will offer you is unreal but they get it and the drugs back when they report you!

Watch your entire rig at Army check points, most of the them are farm boys doing their 2 years from some jungle farm on the mainland and never dreamed of the stuff that we take for granted, the officer in charge usually speaks English. I never lost anything but an old non-working cell phone.

Get on some of the Baja forums (Google them) and see what is the current scoop. Try to cross during the week and not on a Mexican holiday, get your insurance before you go, Do not have any thing having to do with guns, and empty .22 shell can land you in jail. I could write tips for a week but common sense go's a long way.

I have traveled every road , trail , race course, beach, cow path , MC trail from the border to Cabo, much of the time just me and the wife . I regret that I was unable to save the 100,s of photos I took over the years, I do have few of them and have posted them on this and other forums at times.

Yes there is a lot of gold left but I got my share!

Max

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That's interesting info Gilaoro. Here's a simple map so we might see where you are talking about.

post-26159-0-43907900-1373198895_thumb.j

Edited by Rimshot
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I wish it was that simple, need a large scale map. MapQuest has very good one and you can get satellite view also. Hera are some names of areas to look for.

Ojos Negros, on Highway 2 E of Ensenada, the old town is nearby Real De Castillo was the capital of Baja del Norte in 1872, in 1888 there where 6000 Americans mining the area there and at near by EL ALAMO further E on Highway 2.

Real De Castillo was the first place I went when I took a job running a "Pay to Dig " for Enrique Meling, he and his partner had a chance to file on a claim.

We went to check it out , took my 26' Motor home to the claim which was as far as it would go anyway. Parked along side a dry creek that cut through shale, there was shafts and tunnels everywhere and lots of dry washer piles. While I was setting up the MH my wife went down to the creek, it had recently been running, she took a piece of wire and steak knife and started prying the shale apart and digging out the mud in too her gold pan. By the time I got set up and went down there she had 26 pieces of gold sized from little flakes to 3.5 grams! By the time we ran out of Coleman fuel we had over an OZ. Enrique had paid only $200 for the right to check it out, at that time that was 1600 Pesos. I was ready for them to file the clam immediately! it don't work that way with Mexicans, Even after they panned out a 3/4 OZ nugget after a flash flood they still procrastinated, tomorrow they said, no hurry , have another drink. Well one day a Mexican jeweler from Tecate showed up with the Army and papers and ran us off.

This was just E of the river "BARBON" which ran in a deep canyon and had water most of the time, I managed to get my 3" KEENE down to it and dredged out some good nuggets before we got ran off. Years later the ICMJ printed an article from a guy who said he brought the first dredge in there, how little he knew that I pioneered the 4X4 trail down the side of the canyon with my Geo Tracker, went down hill in one run, took seven hours of digging and winching to get out.

After loosing that claim we moved to the Meling Ranch 90 miles S of Ensenada where Enrique owned 25 square miles of the 125 SQ mile ranch, he ran trout fishing trips in to the San Francisco River country 32 miles off the road, this was all gold country both placer and hard rock including the San Francisco mine that his great grandfather took a fortune out of in the 1880'S. He was a German who jumped ship and married in to the locals and founded an empire, at one time the ranch was famous for the famous people who came to hunt and fish, the original house is still standing and lived in. We worked very hard to establish a "Pay to Dig" but we where ahead of the time.

We advertised in the San Diego paper but most people where hesitant to come to Baja and that's a little to far for a weekend trip. No problem with trout fishermen though, they came for a week , we packed them in on mules and horses the last 8 miles down into the canyon to a permanent camp under big cottonwood trees, lots of good food and drink and Rainbow trout by the hundreds, they had to fish from horseback because of the Rattle snakes along the banks, no kidding, this is as primitive country as you will find anywhere.

In the winter we moved the digging to El Alamo another old gold mining town from the 1800'S, we had 25 SQ miles there also but again it was too far from the US to be workable, I would get maybe 12 or 16 guys a month, lots of gold but just too far for a working man to drive for a weekend.

I had the first blower dry washer, metal detector and dredge that many of the locals had ever saw, the mining operation there where either pan and rocker box or full scale foreign

mining corps.

When I first went there the town had about 50 homes and that many nearby ranches, it had an air strip and the flying DR's came every month and spent the whole weekend , people came from all over. then the government bulldoze the airstrip to keep the dopers from using it. the town now has about 3 residents, drought and economy drove them out.

One of them while we lived there took me to the nearby "LAS DELICAS" tourmaline mine that his family has owned for 100 years, it's caved in now but we dug the tailings piles and got lots of smaller specimens. the best known crystal from the mine was bought by Josie Scripps in 1935 , it is now in the Scripps Museum in Oceanside ,CA valued at 1.5 million.

I have saw the original receipt that she signed and old Kodak pictures from 1935 of the crystal and people involved, Josie was wearing those old Jopour pants that women wore back then, she paid $5 dollars for it! You can see it at the museum.

I better quit, I could write a book about Baja alone, or a couple of years we followed Earle Stanley Gardner's trips around Baja before there where roads, he wrote many books and the old Desert magazine printed lots of stories about lost mine hunting in Baja, I tried to find them all.

Max

I tried to post Photo Bucket pictures, no luck!

That's interesting info Gilaoro. Here's a simple map so we might see where you are talking about.

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I better quit, I could write a book about Baja alone, or a couple of years we followed Earle Stanley Gardner's trips around Baja before there where roads, he wrote many books and the old Desert magazine printed lots of stories about lost mine hunting in Baja, I tried to find them all.

Max

Don't quit writing Max! Your recounts of the adventures you had are the most entertaining posts I have read in a long time. Maybe Bill can set you up with a subforum just for your stories?

Edited by matt
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Well maybe you'll figure out the picture thing but in the meantime I'm ready to keep listening. Must have been so much fun being one of the first several getting to inspect semi-virgin ground. To die for sure. How far did ya'll have to drive for food and drinks Gilaoro?

I could read this for hours.

Rim

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Max

you are a jewel. your stories are much richer than the gold.

thanks for posting your wisdom about Mexico. most fellowd just have second hand stories about some arrogant gringo who got schooled in manners at a ceckpoint.

there is gold and adventure there as well as danger. Fearof Mexico has left a whole lot of gold laying around.

Edited by Bedrock Bob
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Max,

Although I have heard your Baja tales before it is fun to read them again. Thanks for taking the time to share them here. Hope rehab is still going well. I dug a bit a FI this morning in a new spot and found it promising. Funny I did not see anyone else out there at all. :D I will stop by the next time I am in WB.

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Rimshot , sorry about the Rimfire, This is a test photo of a bunch of shells.http://i156.photobucket.com/albums/t33/Gilaoro/LobofindsBaja.jpg

If this works I will post a bunch of pictures.

If you are asking about the beach house everything except water for bathing had to be hauled 100 miles, there was a few items closer but not anything fresh or gasoline or propane.

I will post some pictures of our garage sale house and how we smuggled most of it from Yuma,AZ to Campo Christina, our Sea of Cortez home, head quarters for

"BAJA SEVE"s DP racing team, Desert Bull, Wild Bill Weiderhold the Voice of BF GOODRICH tires, His brother "Brother Bill", Corky and many other Baja dirt bike riders & racers, OK the party's we had!

Well maybe you'll figure out the picture thing but in the meantime I'm ready to keep listening. Must have been so much fun being one of the first several getting to inspect semi-virgin ground. To die for sure. How far did ya'll have to drive for food and drinks Gilaoro?

I could read this for hours.

Rim

Edit: Gilaoro, I edited your post to include the image you tried to post, when using Photobucket make sure you use the IMG link that is in the selection of 4 links to the bottom right of your image on the Photobucket page labeled "Link to share this photo", just click on the IMG link and it will tum yellow and say "Copied" and then just paste the link into your post.

Skip, A.K.A. Au Seeker

LobofindsBaja.jpg

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Hey, Max....Why don't you get Billy to set you up your own blog to tell your baja, etc., gold search & find stories ... I know I'd love to read about them ... I love baja... Went down the length of it in an old Ford van in '74, two weeks after they opened the new baja highway...But at the time, I had no interest in chasing gold, since I had my hands full with tequila, cerveza, and such that goes with those noble pursuits ... Got real sick one day north of La Paz and ended up darn near dying in Hotel La Pearla there on New Years Eve ... Ended up naked in the hallway of the hotel, fighting three drunk Mexican sailors who got mixed up about what room they walked into .... I was running a really bad temperature and was hallucinating when they busted through the door ... They thought they'd woke up the devil :evil1: and I thought I was fighting for my life ... All turned out ok, though ... Cheers, Unc

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ugh 100 miles? Holy cow! I'm not sure if I could remember all the stuff i would need. Or all the stuff I forgot I needed....lol! Ut Oh I forgot toilet paper...OMG!!!!

But I guess that's what you got to do if you want to find gold. Get out there where no man has ever gone before.

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What a hoot Ron, As I drove to the tip a Baja too but in 75 with my X. Hills south of Ensenada with wineries,huge bays fulla whales south,cuttn across till San Ignacio honest to god oasis halfway to Santa Rosalina. Watching drunk federalie shooting off his 45 during siesta(tequila time) right in downtown Santa Rosalina,down to the tip Baja de Los Angeles,back up ferry across to mainland and down to Acapulco. SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much poverty,corruption and dangerous territory for a single van. Glad I got it outta my system then prior to these narco wars going on now. No more for me-John

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Max... Great story for sure... Maybe you should write that book! I lost count of how many times I ran the length of Baja. My reason was for sailing. I dragged my Hobie Cat everywhere and sailed it a bunch, I wish I could have sailed with the whales but the Mexicans said no and I respected that. My absolute favorite place was Bahia de Concepcion......should have been chasing gold at the same time. I found that the people of Baja were so much different than the mainland folks. I liked them a bunch, they absolutely loved Baja and loved visitors that shared that same love for an amazing place. Tropical desert is awesome!

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