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Planning for my first meteorite hunt/advice


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Hey guys, 

My name is A.J., I have recently moved down to AZ from MN (been wanting to move down here for several years), and after getting settled in I'm planning on going out on my first hunt. I've been interested in meteorites for several years now, and have spoken to a few of you years ago about a couple different hunting locations in the state. There are so many knowledgeable people here so I know I'm in the right spot!

I am located in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area, and have spent some time researching some spots; here are the ones that I want to try on the upcoming weekends and would appreciate any advice:

1. Willcox Playa: located about 3 hours from me. I know that this is a large dry lake, but would like to hear anyone's thoughts on their experiences there, how to travel there safely, where to park my Jeep, any success and what size meteorites are there, etc. But most importantly, I'd like to know what the current conditions are like. It looks like the middle of the lake has shallow water??? Obviously I would play it safe and only drive in areas where I'm not going to risk getting stuck.

2. Gold Basin: This is the place where I have done the most research, and even purchased a GB meteorite to see what they're like. It's about a 3-1/2 hours drive, but it sounds like there are plenty of meteorites still there to be had, and definitely a very unique area. 

3. Franconia and Holbrook: I haven't done a lot of research on these spots but I know the Holbrook meteorites are pea-sized. Super cool story behind that one. With Franconia, I know it's been very heavily hunted, but I'd still like to give it a try. I also know by reading other posts here that there are some pretty important access issues to be aware of. 

*** I'd also like to add that I have a 4WD vehicle, and I also have a Gold Bug II, which has been super fun to hunt with this past year. I've heard great things about this detector from members and people on YouTube so I knew it would be a good investment. In addition to meteorite hunting, I'd also like to get into nugget shooting as well. I also have a magnet stick that will work well for the dry lakes. 

Apologies for the long post, but I'm very excited what everyone has to hear! Let me know what spots I should check out; also, I'd be very interested to see if anyone would want to go hunt together, as this would probably be better for me as I'm just starting out.

Feel free to reply here or send me a message!

 

 

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Welcome to the forum!

1. Dry lake- use a magnet cane, put your walking shoes on and have at it. Keep the sun to your back. 

2. Lots of development and private property there. Gold bug will do fine. Stay off Federal Lands. 

3. Don't park near tracks or you'll get a ticket. Lots of walking and trash but dig every target. Holbrook, magnet cane and lots of walking. 

Take plenty of water and necessities. Toilet paper for sure. In GB you can also find gold as well. 

Keeping it simple and enjoy the outdoors. Youtube has plenty of videos of all the places you are wanting to visit. 

 

Jayray

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I appreciate the tips, Jay! I’ve got a decent pair of trail shoes that I’ve been using for hiking and they’ll be perfect for the dry lakes. 

It’s funny, I’ve been looking for rocks on the few hikes I’ve done around Scottsdale and it’s astounding how big a difference it makes to have the sun at your back. Makes it a lot easier to spot odd looking rocks!!

For Gold Basin, I know that it’s illegal to hunt with a detector in some areas… has anyone posted a map of where one can use one versus where one can’t? Just want to make sure I will be hunting safely, I have seen a couple people on the forum who hunt by eye for GB meteorites, but I’m not at that level yet, I think I’ll want to start with my Gold Bug 2. 

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GB meteorites are not that tough to spot. They are not everywhere but obvious when spotted. I’ve seen a few walking high on ridges. Flat ridges are better. There are strewn field photos online for reference. Welcome to AZ!! Brownie

B4EC158D-749E-438F-B272-7CECA1AD977C.jpeg

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Thanks for the tips, Brownie. Love that picture, such a distinct burnt reddish/orange color.

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9 hours ago, gaustad18 said:

Thanks for the tips, Brownie. Love that picture, such a distinct burnt reddish/orange color.

They don't all look like that. Some are light to dark gray like the ones I've found. I would keep just about anything you get a signal on with your Gold Bug 2, then examine when you get home. 

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Franconia - stay away during the summer, now is a great time of year but it heats up quick and by June it can be downright dangerous to be out there during the day.  Tons of Mojave Greens, too, so wear snake protection and run away from anything that rattles.  I don't like to hunt Franconia alone

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Thanks for the advice, Mike. I'm planning on buying some snake boots this summer, and I'll be watching for them.

Let me know if you ever go to Franconia, I'd love to join sometime. 

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