Wednesday, November 28, 2012

The Modern Day GOLD RUSH!


Nowadays, it seems everywhere we turn, someone is trying to get you to sell them your unwanted gold. The reason that everyone is gold hungry right now is that 1 oz of gold is worth over $1700!!!

When you consider how much old jewelry we have laying around that Is broken or outdated, this can be very appealing if you got $1700 for it! Realistically, after the gold places take their cut, you will be lucky to get 30% of that which is about $510. It is still an okay number but many places do not give you money for the gemstones that are attached to the gold. Sometimes they give you the stones back but if it is a shady place, they often don't.

If you have an adventurous side, you can go find gold for yourself! Be a part of the modern day Gold Rush.

SAY WHAT???!!!

"Gold Rush" brings up memories of sitting in history class looking at scruffy, bearded, dirty men living in tents with a gold pan at a stream.


While there are still scruffy, dirty, bearded old men, it has in recent years become very family oriented. There are many children and women catching the gold fever and joining in the fun to find the elusive shiny yellow rocks.


My husband's family has been prospecting since he was a teenager and they have created many memories and friends. When I met my husband, he told me about going camping and looking for gold. Naturally I thought they were crazy! Nobody did that anymore, it was all found during the "49" Gold Rush, wasn't it?

They assured me that there was plenty of gold to be found. I became more skeptical when they drove me to the desert! Where was the water? In every picture that I had ever seen about people gold prospecting, they were using a sleuce box or a gold pan alongside a river or a stream.


We set up our camp and I followed my in-laws to an area where there were about 30 men, women and children digging.  On the top of each digging area was a funny looking machine that everyone was throwing the dirt into.  It was called a "dry washer".



It had what looked to be a sleuce box on the bottom with a screen on the top to get rid of large rocks.  Attached to the sleuce from the bottom was a leaf blower that blew air into the bottom of the sleuce where the heavy metals(gold) settled to the bottom and the light dirt was blown down the box such as water would do.

 
The Dry Washer made sense when you looked at it and I was eager to get started.  I think I had started getting the "fever" as I saw one of the guys show me a half ounce of gold in a vial that he had dug up the day before.  I dug along side my father in law and husband for what seemed like hours and finally we stopped for a break to see how we did. I found out quickly that even though there was no running water, you always need a gold pan to sort through the "concentrates" at the end.  While I didn't find a half an ounce of gold, I did find myself a very nice piece of gold that I could pick up with my fingers called a "picker" amongst a good share of fine gold.

I was HOOKED! This is a LOT of work but when I saw gold at the bottom of my gold pan, it made it all worthwhile!  I beg my husband to take us out digging at least once a month!

My children have grown up doing what kids love best, digging in the dirt!  They love looking for gold in their pans and get as excited as us adults!  Besides gold digging, we also metal detect for lost relics such as coins and jewelry.  Our clubs hold coin hunts for everyone to find using metal detectors twice a year and prizes are given out to the winners. 

My family belongs to several Gold Prospecting Clubs; The OC 49ers, Lost Duchman's Mining Association and Gold Prospectors Association of America.  The esiest way to find gold is finding a "mining claim".  Becoming a member of an active club provides you with the use of the club claims instead of doing all of the research, paperwork and funds involved in owning your own.  You do keep all that you find being an active member and often actually win gold and coins at their monthly meetings!

There are many ways of finding gold besides dry washing, sleucing and metal detecting.  You can find rivers that you are allowed to just take a gold pan and a shovel and dig too.  Always do research before you start digging though, you might be "claim jumping" on someone elses claim.


Besides digging in the dirt, we come together as friends and a community to hold potlucks, BBQ's and holiday parties.  I enjoy getting out into the outdoors with my family and I hope that others will join us!

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