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Click to enlargeUnconventional Prospecting!

John writes in:

Just read the story on your page by Bob Azbill, about his wife finding the nugget in his boot. man, that sort of brought back flashbacks. i was up some years back on a piece of property that i own just up out of placerville,california. we were new to the area, and decided to go up and do some sampling. we pulled down right next to the water on this really gorgeous sand/gravel bar. after working our tails off for about 5 hours, we didnt find even a piece of flour gold. my partner and i decided to call it a day, and return another time. we jumped into my ford bronco, started it up, gave it alittle gas, and WHUMP!...we were buried to the axles in sand/mud/gravel. we jumped out and threw it in 4 wheel drive, and tried to feather out. we were stuck.

i was really truely tired and agrivated, and ready to get home to a cup of hot coffee, so i gunned the bronco in 4 low, spun all 4 tires and slowly eased out, slinging dirt and gravel everywere. by the time we got out of the hole, i had really tore the gravel bar to shreads. we got home,tired but glad to make it out.

The next morning (we had returned after dark, and i really didnt look at my truck that closely) i discovered that i had slung mud, sand and gravel so much, the truck was coveed in a good 1/4th to 1/2 in layer down both sides.i promply grabbed the water hose from the porch and began to spray. after i got the truck rinsed down good, i went in for breakfast. my wife stepped out on the porch and saw the mess i had made in the drive. boy did i catch it good! after breakfast, i went out to clean the drive. i started washing the gunk down the driveway, and noticed it was LOADED with black sand, leaving a long ribbon of black behind the junk i was hosing off. my wife came out and jokingly said there was most likely more gold in that then we had found the previous evening. about the time she said that, i looked down and happened to notice a piece of gold about the sizeof a match head laying on the ground just behind the black sand!..WOW! i thought. i went into the house and gathered a broom and a dustpan. i promply swepted up the mud,gravel and sand. i got about 1/2 of a 5 gallon bucket full . i took it to the back of the house and panned it all out. at the end of my little panning session, i had found close to 2 dwt of small nuggets,flakes and fines. the stuff had all been in the gravel bar we had tore up with the truck.

We went back the next day, worked the bar and made about an oz for a full days sluicing. i ended up buying the property for cash, and it has been a great gold producer every since.

true story!


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