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To go a step further, only shovels, picks, and pans.  No other gravity equipment like sluices Forest service does patrol.

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1 hour ago, Electrician said:

Can I use a hand pump style BILGE pump to empty holes filled with water?

Is it mechanical?

You should probably go and ask the forest service rangers, they will tell you for sure.

Maybe implementing a big sponge is the way to go?

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2 hours ago, Electrician said:

Can I use a hand pump style BILGE pump to empty holes filled with water?

I would think a hand bilge pump would be in the same classification as the Keene hand sucker tube, pretty sure it won't fly.

When they say "only shovels, picks, and pans" that's about all they will allow, they worded it that way for a reason, so there's no question when they write you up for using anything else!

There's places over here on the east coast where it's only "hands and pans", meaning you have to dig with your hands and put it in your pan, you get hefty fine and lose any equipment you have with you if you even use a little plastic garden trowel to dig with.

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3 hours ago, Electrician said:

Can I use a hand pump style BILGE pump to empty holes filled with water?

What part dont you understand ?   One of the great things about this area for gold prospectors is that several miles of Lynx Creek have been withdrawn from mineral claim, meaning that these areas are open to recreational prospecting. The Forest Service does have certain rules in place, including restrictions on mechanical mining equipment such as suction dredges, highbanker, drywashers, and even sluice boxes. The Forest Service considers “recreational use” to be limited to gold panning and metal detecting. Using standard equipment such as picks and shovels are allowed, but they must be used below the high water mark. Any holes that are dug must be filled in before leaving the area:arrowheadsmiley: :200:

Edited by Mike C...
changed my mind
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4 hours ago, Electrician said:

Can I use a hand pump style BILGE pump to empty holes filled with water?

I bet you can use the bucket and rope style bilge pump to empty holes filled with water.

Surely they haven't banned buckets too.

It is amazing what you can do with a simple siphon hose and a bucket. Maybe a couple pieces of tygon tubing and a pickle jar. It isn't fancy equipment but it works pretty good once you get the hang of it.

It sounds like a great place to prospect. Just have to keep it simple. 

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Regulations are here:

https://www.fs.usda.gov/detail/prescott/recreation/?cid=stelprdb5359247

EXCEPT FOR GOLD PANS, METAL DETECTORS AND HAND TOOLS, SUCH AS PICKS AND SHOVELS, IT IS PROHIBITED TO USE ANY MOTORIZED OR MECHANICAL EQUIPMENT OR MINING AIDS USED FOR MINERAL EXTRACTION WITHIN THE BOUNDARIES OF THE WITHDRAWAL AREA, AS DEFINED ON THE ATTACHED MAP. 

There is no way around it.  It is patrolled.  Most times I’ve been there I’ve seen forest service patrolling.  They leave you alone, but I’ve never brought motorized equipment or a sluice, just a pick and shovel.

The AMRA used to have a claim on a feeder creek to Lynx creek.  That would not be part of the mineral withdrawal area.  Had relatively easy access.  Costs money to join the AMRA.  Looks like they have some good clams including one with water for dredging, a rarity in AZ.

Used to be able to drive up to the fire station, but they put up a no parking sign.  That had been picked clean anyways.

You can always call the forest service district office to be sure, but if they tell you something wrong, they are honestly not responsible for the misinformation, and you will be ticketed with equipment confiscated.

Edited by chrisski
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