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Author Topic: Is All The Good Gold Gone?  (Read 36531 times)

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Offline GPEX admin

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  • Larry
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Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« on: September 06, 2013, 11:55:12 AM »
How can the little guy ever compete for a few crumbs of gold with the larger mining companies sporting all the convenience and tools to aid their explorations?   For they have everything going for them, fluid capital, all the geoscience tools at their disposal, such as aerial surveys, subsurface measuring and evaluation capability, top level experienced geologists, and the whole nine yards.  You see their planes and helicopters flying grid formations and toting tag-along instrumentation for sensing and mapping out the geology and deposits, then every now and again you read about another new mine heading toward its opening.  So in all realism, what chance does the little guys have?

Now that we peeked into that deep dark hole and flirted with defeat, lets then look upward toward the rays of sunshine that rain down over us.  And start using our head.  

So what, if that handful of companies out there sports all the neat toys that we the humble prospector can only drool over?  And so what if they have far more to invest than we?  Lets look at the real side of it all.  Yes, these larger companies have (and have had) the capability of mapping out where many (if not most) of the gold deposits lie   And you see their claims amassing areas signifying another bonanza spot getting swallowed up (this, however, is not to be confused with the closet speculator whose only interest is to milk the investment community)  But the untold tale is, the picture is not quite as dismal as it firstly appears.

Economics -  a crucial element that comes into play regardless of the size of operation.  The bigger the player, the greater the deposit must be for them to profit and survive.  So what you see is, the larger companies focusing on the larger deposits, those which are then deemed economical for their investors.  Mega-millions to billion dollar deposits.  But what about those planes and helicopters which were out flying those formations and logging down (within their instrumentation) where ‘all’ the deposit showings were located at?  Let us not for a second, forget about those.

One would likely be shocked if that mouse on the shelf could talk.  Realistically, there are likely ‘thousands’ of gold bearing deposits that were detected and logged in the annals of mining companies’ secret journals locked in some dusty office corner.  After all, that information  was acquired through their investments and expenditures, so why then would they share this with the rest of the mining community?  Yet, these smaller deposits (from their view) would be worth only one, two, maybe as high as ten million dollars or so.  Small and uneconomical to them, but huge and well worth the venture for the small-scale miner.  But failing their willingness to share, this then leaves a broad spectrum for the little guy to get out there and get thorough with his or her prospecting, for the deposits are there – crying out for their ‘second’ exposure – and the one which can carry their values to light.

Quality research and sample – sample – sample – and sample – that’s what it’s all about

Somebody said that it couldn't be done
But he with a chuckle replied
That maybe it couldn't but he wouldn't be one
Who'd say so until he had tried.

Offline sunshine

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #1 on: September 06, 2013, 12:31:40 PM »
Well said Larry.  The focus for the small time miner ought to be the sites overlooked (as too small) by the big boys.  We don't need as big a sand box nor the same sand box toys.  Either that or get there first and hopefully your small claim is dead center of where they want to be. 
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Offline Goldcrow

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #2 on: September 06, 2013, 03:10:09 PM »
Remember this..we all have that opportunity. The difference as I see it, is how we go about taking advantage of the opportunity. No golden rings on this merry-go-round. <-laugh->
Work smart..and hard

Offline CaribooAu

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2013, 03:25:47 PM »
To true Larry.....I have long worked to my goals and soon they will come true....going through many claims only to keep the ones
that will pay on a small scale operation with a good life for a little guy like me and my son.

That cup is half full alright - full of GOLD.... :D

Take care and keep on digging.
May The Fever Be With You...

Offline mcbain

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2013, 07:54:56 PM »
Hi. Larrey don't think so and you are absoletley right.about the big guys.dont care.I am not giving up.there is always the next hole to be dug.finding gold in the most unexpected places.Luck Mcbain.
I started out with nothing Istill have most of it.

Offline blucorundum

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #5 on: September 07, 2013, 10:20:55 AM »
look for the areas where the fine gold is. they were left by the oldtimers as panning for an ounce of nuggets compared to fine gold, was more profitable at $20/oz. with todays equipment, the fine gold is where it is at. the real money maker.

Offline overtheedge

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #6 on: September 07, 2013, 01:20:12 PM »
Granted, the exploration geologists have every sort of whiz-bang gizmo to log data covering thousands of hectares, but they go through grossly obscene amounts of money and need large deposits to turn a profit before the money runs out. At least here in Alaska, some of the state has been geophysically surveyed with state monies and the data is on the web. We need to concentrate our efforts on the small deposits and become proficient at panning and pan sampling.

With practice, a person can pan flour gold to concentrate just as fast or faster than chunkier gold.

The key is "pan to concentrate". Why possibly faster than chunkier? Human nature will almost always force the person to do a partial clean-up to fill a brag-bottle. By the end of the day, that person has only panned 35-50% of their potential.

And in the end, most will be melted down anyway. They pay by weight.

But flour gold isn't exciting to most folks. They walk away leaving it for me to recover. And like blucorundum pointed out, flour gold is not profitable to most folks due to lack of panning expertise.

The key for panning flour gold profitably is only pan to concentrate and take it home to finish.

You are somewhat correct though Larry. Most of the easier to find gold was found. Now one must look for smaller deposits in remote areas that are geologically related to existing known deposits.

5000 cubic meters is not a lot of alluvial material on a claim. But if the gravel runs 20 cubic meters to the ounce of flour gold, that is 250 ounces. Or roughly $250,000 at today's prices. With basic equipment, 2-5 cubic meters a day is possible. That is 0.1-0.25 ounces a day or $100-$250. Remember that old song by Tennessee Ernie Ford, "16 Tons"? That is roughly 14-15 cubic meters of broken bituminous coal.

The odds were and are against getting rich. We rarely hear about those tens of thousands who went bust. Many of whom never made it home.

There is still gold to be found in North America for the most intrepid adventurers. I contend that we are no different from those folks of days gone by. We prefer our mediocre comforts rather than risk having a real adventure.

I'll also leave you with another tidbit. We tend to do everything possible to handicap ourselves. We forget that the prospectors of a century ago rarely operated as individuals. They formed companies for prospecting. Their collective efforts and pooled supplies greatly aided them in staying in the field for extended periods of time. The greater and longer the prospecting efforts, the higher the probability of success. They sampled enormous areas only so-so and moved on if they didn't find a profitable site. If a profitable site was found, they all staked claims as individuals. And they told other companies of prospectors where they had been. Ergo, lots of areas were known to have uneconomic levels of colors when real hotspots might still exist or have come into existence.

The river I work most often is not even listed as gold-bearing although with effort, I can almost always stay in beans and have had several 5-10 gram days with a high-banker. 

Offline HeavyMetalX

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #7 on: September 12, 2013, 11:17:07 PM »
re- fine gold

Most rivers, creeks etc probably keep coughing up gold, as stuff smashes below surface during flooding, releasing more of the goodies. Stuff contained within rock, originally caught in the natural riffles, getting replaced by heavier stuff, out to the river and smashed into by something bigger going by sort of deal.

on topic...

enter power projects... bye bye small guy who could never realize the honey spots in the depths anyhow. IMHO a percentage of that removed material should be auctioned off, with a portion also dropped off in at local panning areas and in reserve for such.

Oh and good post eric...


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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #8 on: September 13, 2013, 05:12:23 AM »
before internet, I used to subscribe to the Northern Miner and I still have a stack of their annual books from the 80s.

junior miners explored properties and would shelf ore bodies less than 0.10 grams per ton. 

now anything over 0.01 is considered good but as Larry says - there are a lot of pocket ore bodies out there, that have been put on the shelf.

Offline deserdog

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Re: Is All The Good Gold Gone?
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2013, 09:38:04 AM »
Pan down to concentrates, peek to see if you are still on the gold, dump in bucket and repeat. Take bucket home for final clean up. You can take your cons home, but you can't take the creek home so make as much cons as yo can while at the creek.
Cannot find if you do not look!