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Well guys its been a while since I last posted my first nugget finds so I thought I would share my most recent ones. After some intense google earth searching I found a spot that looked pretty good from the images so I hit the ground to see what it looked like up close. What I found was an old ground sluice operation in an area that was transitioning from predominately shale to granite. Even better it did not appear that anyone had spent much time detecting it as there was no disturbed ground and the usual trash was still intact. I spent the day meandering about the diggings with the gpx5000 and sadie coil pulling lead and nails until I finally hit upon a nice little 13.2 grain nugget up on the apron of two sluice trenches. I thought ok this is good, so I slowed down and really covered the immediate area and then beyond. Nothing else but that one teaser nugget. It was late so I came back the next morning armed with my NF 9x14 coil. I went up, down sideways until my shoulder was about to fall off....and nothing, nothing but shallow lead bullets. I came back to this location for several more days thinking that I must have missed something on that hillside but still the skunk persisted. I went to try my luck at some other places the following week but my thoughts kept telling me to go back and try it again. So off I went back to the old digging. I tried a spot off to the other side of the digging along a trail that I had not paid to much attention to. After a short while I hit a nice soft signal that turned out to be a 4.8 grain smooth flat little nugget. Its shape was totally different than the one from the other side. This little nugget re-energized my drive so I hiked around the corner from this digging to another small gulch 100 yards away that the old timers were taking water from but had not mined. The head of this gulch split into a V and the hill formed a U shape around the top. I had a good feeling about this spot as I could see some outcrop of rock just ahead above the fork in the waterway. I put my coil to the ground and within ten feet I hit a signal. I thought it was going to be lead but out popped a teardrop shaped nugget. My pulsed raced a bit as this was the first nugget I found that was out in the middle of the Forrest with no signs of previous mining to be found. I put it safely away and went back to detecting....another target sounded off a foot away from the last....nugget #2....a foot farther nugget #3 and the biggest one I had found to date at 2.04 pennyweight. Now this is when I realized I was having my own TRINITYAU moment...and that I was on my very first pocket! All I could think was how big could it be, so I stopped digging and just started detecting the immediate area. Target 4 sounded off then 5 then 6 then nothing more. I dug the the remaining 3 with the last one buried deep in a manzanita root. when the dust cleared I had 6 nuggets weighing 4.5 pennyweight in a 5x6 foot area. All were on top of granite but later I did find that its contact with shale was about 8 feet away. I have since spent the last month and a half in the woods looking for more along the various contact zones but have found no more pockets, however I did get a couple more small pieces down by the original operation. I have not given up yet! but I am going to take a break and check out some new locations. Thanks for Listening.

 

-Jeff

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Some nice looking gold, thanks for posting--the nugget next to the dime has a great shape--find some more ---Hal

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Nice read on the geology. Google Earth, along with modern up-to-date geology reports, and the latest in detector technologies, have given us so much of an advantage over the old timers, that there should be no reason for a modern day prospector not to find their very own "mother lode". It's out there, you just have to stay away from the normal tourist areas and do a little more traveling to get to those areas. B)

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Good job on your perserverance and reading the ground!!! That's what it takes for success long term and it seems you're doing a great job ... The finding of those dinks will lead you to some monsters before long ... Thanks for sharing ... Cheers, Unc

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Thanks guys for the kind words. I got to thinking and would like to make one point about my Title choice. Long before I ever owned a detector I read and studied every post that Ray would write regarding surface pockets here in Shasta county. So you might say that is what got me to take the next step and buy a detector or in my case two. So when I hit upon what I believe to be my first surface pocket it all seemed to come full circle...reading about them to dreaming about them to finding one of my own...hence the TRINITYAU moment in the title. I wrote that with utmost respect for Ray. Ray, I hope that was okay with you.

 

LipCa, I did fill them in, they were only 6" deep. I look forward to the day I can fill in the 20" hole that a nugget comes out of. :D

 

-Jeff

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Jeff,

 

I knew you probably did. (or, at least I thought you would)

 

It was just a poke at all the holes that you were digging and finding gold!

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Congrats Jeff. . . Very nice job on all accounts.... Thanks for the story and pics.

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Thanks for posting your finds Jeff, nice looking gold, and you sure did deserve to find some after all the work!!

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