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Chris Coffee

Back from a 2 day hunt with DolanDave

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Well, I received my GPX4500 last week and met up with DolanDave and his awesome dad here in Southern California for a hunt on Saturday morning. We were in the vicinity of Randsburg in what "looked" like very good gold-bearing ground. This is also an area where a lot of gold has been found in the past.

Dave and his dad got there Friday and spent a lot of the day detecting the area before I met up with them. So, I get a text from Dave Friday evening that says the following: 

"Went out at randsburg today, really disappointed, couldn't walk 5 feet without hitting bullet, this place is a war zone"

I felt bad for him because I know exactly how he felt. There are literally MILLIONS of bullets littering this desert out here. I mean, you can drive 7 miles off the paved road into the middle of nowhere on a mountaintop (like we did on Saturday) and dig. 22 shells/projectiles as much as a foot deep. I climbed to the top of a hill that had to be 100 foot tall, got a signal, dug down about 8", and found a staple (the kind for papers). I recall Dave telling me that in Arizona and Nevada it's not near as bad, and that this would be his last trip out here because of it. As if the ungodly amounts of bullets wasn't bad enough, we were digging up nuts, bolts, spark plugs, lead bird-shot, and lots of other garbage. 

As bad as I felt for what they were going through, and even myself on Saturday, it kind of gave me a little bit of validation for all of my frustration over the years. I know a lot of folks say that you have to just keep going and dig everything, but I wonder if those people have ever literally dug over 100+ bullets EVERY SINGLE TIME THEY GO OUT? It is definitely hard to keep the motivation there when you are running into bullets and other garbage literally every 3 to feet apart. All in all, I had a great time and I'm looking forward to hunting these to gentleman again in the future. 

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6 minutes ago, Chris Coffee said:

Well, I received my GPX4500 last week and met up with DolanDave and his awesome dad here in Southern California for a hunt on Saturday morning. We were in the vicinity of Randsburg in what "looked" like very good gold-bearing ground. This is also an area where a lot of gold has been found in the past.

Dave and his dad got there Friday and spent a lot of the day detecting the area before I met up with them. So, I get a text from Dave Friday evening that says the following: 

"Went out at randsburg today, really disappointed, couldn't walk 5 feet without hitting bullet, this place is a war zone"

I felt bad for him because I know exactly how he felt. There are literally MILLIONS of bullets littering this desert out here. I mean, you can drive 7 miles off the paved road into the middle of nowhere on a mountaintop (like we did on Saturday) and dig. 22 shells/projectiles as much as a foot deep. I climbed to the top of a hill that had to be 100 foot tall, got a signal, dug down about 8", and found a staple (the kind for papers). I recall Dave telling me that in Arizona and Nevada it's not near as bad, and that this would be his last trip out here because of it. As if the ungodly amounts of bullets wasn't bad enough, we were digging up nuts, bolts, spark plugs, lead bird-shot, and lots of other garbage. 

As bad as I felt for what they were going through, and even myself on Saturday, it kind of gave me a little bit of validation for all of my frustration over the years. I know a lot of folks say that you have to just keep going and dig everything, but I wonder if those people have ever literally dug over 100+ bullets EVERY SINGLE TIME THEY GO OUT? It is definitely hard to keep the motivation there when you are running into bullets and other garbage literally every 3 to feet apart. All in all, I had a great time and I'm looking forward to hunting these to gentleman again in the future. 

Chris: We feel your pain! Seriously. It can be (and often is), absolutely Mind Numbing!! Larry Sallee of ZIP ZIP fame wrote that it took him 9 months of constant effort and he dug thousands of trash signals before he found a nugget. I know it took me longer than that, until I finally decided to go where I thought the possibilities of finding gold seemed better, and hopefully be able to improve the odds of hitting something other than trash every time out. That turned out to be AZ for me, and off the beaten path a bit.  But also keep in mind, if you have the patience, there might be areas where it could be worth your while to "clean" out the trash, then try a larger coil, or experiment with a VLF and maybe a smaller coil to discriminate out some of the junk that way (or meter ID the trash and don't dig it) As you know, it is usually recommended to dig all targets (unless you are in a situation like you describe), then maybe  an alternative approach is called for.  A good super magnet can help eliminate the surface ferrous metal but the lead, brass etc. non-ferrous stuff will still be a problem, of course. Keep trying and researching, and don't give up!

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Chris, move on,... that means leave the trash infested area and the frustration behind, at least for the time being.
Move on to areas that are not so "concentrated" with bogus signals.

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I too feel your pain Chris.  I've never dug a hundred holes in a day but over months I and my son did dig hundreds of them and every single one was trash of some sort.  It is frustrating to say the least, it leads to cherry picking, and that leads to wondering what you missed!  When I finally did get my first nugget it was in an area littered with square nails with some trash mixed in,  I think I now have enough square nails to build a small house. Persistence did finally pay off though and you know what, it was worth it.  I can't wait for the snow to melt so I can get back up there.  

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Keep at it Chris. By the end of a 6 hour day of digging trash, I freely admit to being discouraged, frustrated, and, as Bill joked about in one of his videos "Wahhh, wahhhh, I didn't find any gold".

The next morning, I head out again with the attitude that "Today is the day"

Yesterday I managed to find a golf ball sized piece of rotten, iron stained quartz in a mine dump. The Gold Monster said non ferrous, and it was correct. When I broke the piece up, there were traces of gold in the iron. Not big enough for a photo, but dammit, I found gold again!  Thankfully, I resisted the urge to take the GPX for that mission. The ground was so littered with iron it would have made the GPX detonate from 20 feet away. The Monster was the right tool for the job.

As for time, my Wife actually keeps track of how many hours I hunt. I found a tiny specimen in January, and this little piece of ore yesterday. 123 hours of detecting between. Lots of heartbreaking bullets, and a pile of iron trash.

My obvious goal is to reduce the interval, by improving the results. In the mean time, I'm not sitting on my azz, staring at a screen, or drinking beer all day, I'm out hunting!

Keep on keepin' on!

Regards, 

Kyle

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The future for minelab has to be discrimination on a pi machine, where it would tell you it was gold and nothing else.  It will be done someday probably not in our time though.

 

 

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 I almost fell out of my chair laughing at this. Welcome to my world.   I seriously hate Southern California and the trash. Chris I know where you were at and the funny thing is the first time I ever went back there I found a 4 g nugget.  The second time out I found 29 grams in one wash. The next 10 trips which came pretty quick because I thought the place was loaded I got skunked. I don’t understand it.  The Gold Gods get you excited about things  that take you on a wild goose chases for many many many more trips to find nothing.   I agree with Frank about moving on to less trashy areas as to not get discouraged. You can only dig 80 to 100 targets a trip without wanting to give up.  Can’t wait to go huntin with you Some day bro hang in there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Brownie 

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Nice Meeting up with you Chris, and meeting up with Roy and Cody also.

  Its been years since being in the Randsburg area prospecting, and I have to admit if you ever need lead, I know where to go :arrowheadsmiley: , I hiked up a long wash all the way to the top of a large hill,  with no trails or roads in sight, and almost at the end of the wash, about 3/4 of the way up the large hill, about 3 feet down, wammo a spark plug.... I look around and go NO "F'n" WAY !!!! It took me an hour, several waterfalls, huge boulders, ect, and there is a spark plug probably from the 80's up here.... but we also explored, off roading, butterflies and flowers just everywhere from the rains, the desert actually looked gorgeous.

  The last day there, I switched tactics, only digging deep faint targets, search the banks, bends, dips, ect.  Nope forget that.... hehe... That just wore me out digging 3 foot holes for lead. I have to give it to the California guys, even though I am a migrant from Southern Cali also .... If you want a good workout, go detect Southern California, or even Northern California, as I have done that a few times also....

  Detecting Nevada and Arizona, I have to say, I have it easy, and that is even with Patton , and the military shooting up the desert for training....

  Good seeing old friends, and hanging in the desert, would show some gold to everyone, but got mr stinky on my back, hehe...

Until next time,

Dave

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I definitely don't plan on giving up this time. I haven't found gold that wasn't "planted" in a very long time and I won't stop until I do. The funny thing is... every time I go out I think to myself exactly what Kyle says..."this is the day I being home some yellow stuff", but that yellow stuff usually ends up being pollen. LOL. 

I completely agree with FrankC about moving on. It would really be nice to find somewhere to go to that WASN'T covered in trash, but the reality is that it is EXTREMELY difficult to find places out here that is clear of that kind of stuff. I'm sure they are out there. I just have to find them. 😊😉

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20 minutes ago, DolanDave said:

Nice Meeting up with you Chris, and meeting up with Roy and Cody also.

  Its been years since being in the Randsburg area prospecting, and I have to admit if you ever need lead, I know where to go :arrowheadsmiley: , I hiked up a long wash all the way to the top of a large hill,  with no trails or roads in sight, and almost at the end of the wash, about 3/4 of the way up the large hill, about 3 feet down, wammo a spark plug.... I look around and go NO "F'n" WAY !!!! It took me an hour, several waterfalls, huge boulders, ect, and there is a spark plug probably from the 80's up here.... but we also explored, off roading, butterflies and flowers just everywhere from the rains, the desert actually looked gorgeous.

  The last day there, I switched tactics, only digging deep faint targets, search the banks, bends, dips, ect.  Nope forget that.... hehe... That just wore me out digging 3 foot holes for lead. I have to give it to the California guys, even though I am a migrant from Southern Cali also .... If you want a good workout, go detect Southern California, or even Northern California, as I have done that a few times also....

  Detecting Nevada and Arizona, I have to say, I have it easy, and that is even with Patton , and the military shooting up the desert for training....

  Good seeing old friends, and hanging in the desert, would show some gold to everyone, but got mr stinky on my back, hehe...

Until next time,

Dave

Dave, you and Chris paint the picture I live when I go there which sucks but is making me laugh also.  The ground there looks amazing plus I have found gold there.  But when you go to such a remote place out there and dig a sprocket from a bike 2 feet deep you just get cranky (no pun intended)

 To deal with it I have actually found myself talking out loud saying things like “I hope this is lead, please let this be lead.....yes I scored another lead nugget!”

I have to think there is more gold back their being such a vast range.  Tons of trash in most areas so no detectorist appear to be working it.  High grade lode claims, hand stacks, placer claims adjacent, it’s all there.  

Anyhow sounds like you all had a good time, maybe some sore backs but everyone got home safe👍🏻

Brownie

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1 hour ago, Brownnugget said:

 I almost fell out of my chair laughing at this. Welcome to my world.   I seriously hate Southern California and the trash. Chris I know where you were at and the funny thing is the first time I ever went back there I found a 4 g nugget.  The second time out I found 29 grams in one wash. The next 10 trips which came pretty quick because I thought the place was loaded I got skunked. I don’t understand it.  The Gold Gods get you excited about things  that take you on a wild goose chases for many many many more trips to find nothing.   I agree with Frank about moving on to less trashy areas as to not get discouraged. You can only dig 80 to 100 targets a trip without wanting to give up.  Can’t wait to go huntin with you Some day bro hang in there!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Brownie 

Steve, seeing the gold you got from up there really got my blood pumping...lol. I figured that with the new 4500, and being in an area where I knew gold was found, that we (myself and the rest of the gang 😁) would have a really good chance at finding something. I even made it a point to slow my swing speed down, take half steps to ensure I was covering the most ground, and dig every single target. And here I am, 3 days later, and I still can't hold a glass for long because my hands hurt so badly. Looking forward to hunting with you too, bro. Let's make it happen 😁😊

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Hey Chris,

Welcome back, I know what you mean about lotsa lead in the Randsburg area....  I have found two small nuggets NW of the town, just about a mile, on the sloping hills... However the bullets and assorted bits of trash are abundant....  I think you will hit a target every three steps or so...  Tuesday I was on the Taft Club claims around Benson Canyon on the El Paso side of the valley....  Yep lots of lead, I found an area which someone had raked down and pulled trash off of that site as well...  It was however a beautiful day with no wind which is a real boon, and butterflies and hummingbirds were there as well....  All said, not a bad twenty four hours....  Oh yea, the GBll is working great!  Zip Zip.....

Jeff

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