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Gold Prospecting & Placer Deposits: Finding Gold Made Simpler

Gold Prospecting & Placer Deposits: Finding Gold Made Simpler

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Gold Prospecting & Placer Deposits: Finding Gold Made Simpler

3/5 (2 évaluations)
219 pages
4 heures
Mar 19, 2014


There are countless prospecting books out there. They all teach the same general theories and show the same diagrams. While they are not bad books, in fact many are great, this book is written to take a different and simpler approach. A prospectors lifetime of knowledge is simplified and condensed into an easy to read and understand guide that will hopefully benefit those who never even held a gold pan as much as those who have spent a few years prospecting but might still have a few questions they are seeking answers to. It is the intent that this is the prospecting book that will read as a novel, and teach every bit as much as an informational guide.

What are the types of equipment available and how do I use them? What is it that I am looking for when I am prospecting? What do I do with my gold once I find it and how do I sell it? Are my black sands worth anything? What are black sands made out of? How do I find a place I can go and prospect? Is there a way to know where I should dig in a stream? How do Mining claims work?

These are some of the many questions that this book was written to address. While there is no guide that can tell you how to get rich mining for gold, this guide has been written for the purpose of helping you be more likely to find gold on your future prospecting trips.

It is easy to become discouraged as a prospector, or allow yourself to believe others when they say "there is no gold left to be found, the old-timers got it all". You are just a few pages away from learning the facts; and that the gold has not all been taken and how you can get your share!

Mar 19, 2014

À propos de l'auteur

The author was born in the Pacific Northwest in the year 1985, and will always call it home. He has held an interest in science as well as science fiction ever since he can remember, and has always been fond of the outdoors. Most of his background is in technology, but in recent years the job market has been oversaturated with overqualified applicants so he began writing and publishing non-fiction books as a way of not only sharing what he knows, but genuinely seeking to help people wherever knowledge might benefit them. The authors interests range from computer games, to gold prospecting, coin & stamp collecting, and even gambling (video poker mostly). When the author is not writing books or otherwise working on one project or another, he is spending the time with friends and family, and whenever possible is out prospecting for gold.

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Gold Prospecting & Placer Deposits - Adam Koch

Gold Prospecting


Placer Deposits:

Finding Gold Made Simpler

By Adam Gregory Koch

Copyright © 2013 Adam Gregory Koch

First Smashwords Edition

Published By Adam Gregory Koch

All rights reserved.


This book is dedicated to the legacy and heritage of prospecting so that it may be embraced and continue to be passed down through our generations that it shall not perish from this earth so that it will be preserved for posterity’s sake and allow for our generations of youth to be able to experience and understand our heritage first hand…

I cannot in good conscience dedicate this book, without paying respect to those who have tragically lost their lives above and below ground doing that job which is necessary to uphold any level of civilization beyond the most primitive… Whether it be from Indian attacks on their way to the gold fields during our westward expansion, or cave-ins and fires underground in recent history… These people have earned a place among our honored dead as surely as our most valiant of heroes…

While no longer are prospectors attacked by Indians, there are those who have sacrificed all in courts of law to uphold and defend that freedom which we have; to mine and prospect; which is at constant risk of being destroyed by mindless regulations imposed by the minority elite and the lawsuit happy special interest groups…

That the 1872 mining laws be not repealed, but rather supported and embraced as they are the only federal laws on the books that grant us, as citizens of the United States, the right to claim minerals on federal lands which are owned by we the people but held in trust by our government… Rights that only large national mining companies can enjoy in many parts of the world and are too precious to be thrown away… It is what throughout American history has generated prosperity where there otherwise would be none…

May it never be forgotten that where one single freedom or liberty is trampled and torn asunder regardless of what that freedom is, we are all irreparably harmed and the torch of liberty begins to fade even further away into the depths of darkness and despair… To quote Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., Beware how you take away hope from any human being.

















I have very large ideas of the mineral wealth of our Nation. I believe it practically inexhaustible. It abounds all over the western country, from the Rocky Mountains to the Pacific, and its development has scarcely commenced…. Immigration, which even the war has not stopped, will land upon our shores hundreds of thousands more per year from overcrowded Europe. I intend to point them to the gold and silver that waits for them in the West. Tell the miners from me, that I shall promote their interests to the utmost of my ability; because their prosperity is the prosperity of the Nation, and we shall prove in a very few years that we are indeed the treasury of the world.

–President Abraham Lincoln

Message for the miners of the west, communicated verbally to Speaker of the House Schuyler Colfax by President Lincoln on April 14th 1865, before his visit to Ford’s Theater, and the speech was delivered by Schuyler Colfax in Denver Colorado on May 27th 1865 via a speech to a large crowd.

Anyone who knows the history and our heritage knows how prophetic Lincoln’s words were with all the major gold rushes and mineral discoveries, and that the importance of mineral wealth and mining to any nation, especially ours, cannot be denied nor destroyed without great consequences to our standard of living and prosperity: For without mining and minerals we would be reduced to that of a third world nation.


Special thanks to my best friends who have helped me regain my motivation, that I can once again see light at the end of the tunnel, and continue to write and publish.

Thanks also to all the rest of my friends…

Even though I barely hear from most of you anymore…

I should extend my gratitude to President Obama for the bad job market:

Otherwise I probably would have found a job and not become an author!


The time has come to write and publish the revised and expanded edition of Gold Prospecting & Placer Deposits. Even though it was the Author’s best seller so far in its old edition, it was never viewed by the author as complete. It was a learning process in the realm of writing and publishing and a lot of progress has been made in regards to quality control and content. With two additional books under the Author’s belt (Coin & Bullion Scams Exposed, and Video Poker Profits from the Ground Up as seen on the last page of this book), it is time to turn this into a quality publication to ensure customer satisfaction and finally release it in paperback for the first time.

So, what is new in this edition? More details and information for the whole spectrum of prospecting aimed at being a primer for beginners, and the somewhat experienced alike. From how to use a gold pan and set up a sluice box, to introductions on mining claims and the basics behind staking and owning them. How to find places you can prospect is also covered. Even how to sell your gold and minerals is covered! Hopefully nothing of importance has been left out, some of it may be quite general, but it goes into depth where most needed and care was taken to maintain simplicity so that even someone who has never prospected before can learn how!

There is no book in the world that can lead you to the vast riches still buried in the ground. Even if you had a map telling you where a fortune in gold can be found, it is of such a nature that you can literally be inches away from millions of dollars and never know it especially in hard rock mining. With placer mining, you know if there is gold there you can keep digging until you reach it, and if you don’t hit it, you have to start digging somewhere else. This is why people have started going back into mines with metal detectors and scan the walls of the tunnels. Of course, not all mines are in rock formations conducive to the formation of native gold, and in a lot of cases any gold present is not in visible quantities. Only an assay can tell you what you have and how much you have. If you glance at a rock and see some gold, sure it is rich ore, but a little bit will look like millions of dollars to the untrained eye. Many miners have bought up a gold mine assuming to make their riches and went bust. This isn’t to mean you can’t make a fortune mining gold, you just have to go about it the right way.

Gold prospecting is not a get rich quick scheme, nor is staking mining claims a way to grab land from the government, contrary to popular myth. It doesn’t matter who owns a claim, if it is unpatented anyone can fish there, or hike there, or camp there. It does not give you exclusive use of the land. Only the minerals present. However, you are allowed to keep people out of areas that are directly being affected by your mining activities to keep not only yourself but passers through safe from harm. As for prospecting and locating claims: It takes time and experience not just on the computer or in the libraries doing research in the off season, but you can read and talk about it all you want but without having practical field experience you will never develop your prospecting skills. It is something you only get proficient at by doing.

When I started out some 17 years ago with a shovel and a pan, I only knew some of the basics: That I had to keep digging and panning until I found gold and once I did, to keep digging there. Every shiny speck I seen I thought might be gold. It wasn’t until I actually had gold in my pan that I knew it unmistakably was gold. If you have any doubts what you are looking at is gold, it probably is not gold. I have a passion for prospecting. The gold is only the fringe benefit. The search for it is its own reward and is what keeps driving and fueling my passion. I know a lot of people who only see the dollar signs and get discouraged and quit when they are unable to make bank on it. That is not the mark of a successful prospector. Dedication, and a positive outlook and attitude will ensure your success. Even when others say there is no gold in an area.

The word prospecting literally means searching for something. Mining is what you do when you actually find enough to extract from the ground to produce any appreciable amount of minerals. You prospect until you find a large or rich deposit, then you mine all you can out of it. If you aren’t willing to spend the time looking for a great place, you will never have the opportunity to start actually mining. It doesn’t matter if you are using a tea spoon to dig with and a frying pan to process material with, it is still mining. But as long as you are digging all over the place, you are prospecting. The only thing that changes is the scale of it.

A lot of prospectors would rather focus on prospecting so they opt to lease their claims and just take royalties off other people mining the resources. It is not so much the mentality that the grass is greener on the other side as it is the excitement of the discovery and of finding new gold: Although there is satisfaction to be had in mining itself because you never know what the next bucket will hold, nor what is in that next rock. I once whacked a random rock with a hammer in an outcrop in an area where fossils have never been documented. As surely as I am sitting here typing this sentence, that rock had split along its axis and revealed a leaf fossil. (Yes, the types of rock tell you what you might find. You would not find fossils embedded in igneous rock. You will find them in sedimentary rock. That’s just my freebie of a hint to my loyal readers! Precious metals tend to be associated with igneous formations and contact zones.) You really never know what you will find or where you find it. As long as you aren’t out there looking for something you will never be able to find anything. But the minute you are out in the field, your probability is no longer zero.

I would almost guarantee gold can be found anywhere and everywhere, but some regions are simply very poor in gold. This does not mean that there isn’t a bonanza lurking somewhere. It just means it is harder to find, and the only people who would find it are the more experienced of prospectors. The best gold I’ve found has come from places where everyone said There’s no gold there. I don’t know if it was out of wanting to prove people wrong, or having faith in the fact a stream cutting through miles of sand, rock, gravel, and dirt is going to be concentrating every mineral found for the whole length of the watercourse. It is really hard to imagine a river or stream cutting through miles of mountains and ground, not having anything valuable in it.

Gold has a way of turning up where it is least expected. Nature is full of surprises, from waterways changing their courses to glaciers bulldozing hundreds of miles of ground, then melting leaving alluvial material for runoff to wash into streams and concentrate in gulches. Prospectors have been known to bury their gold pouches during Indian attacks, and I am sure sacks of gold have fallen from pack mules and ended up returning the gold back to nature in a totally different area than it came from. Anything is possible. You may find a lot of gold, but there may in fact not be a vein to find. Sometimes the bedrock is the source of the gold. Sometimes there is much hard rock gold and very little placer gold too. The general rule is the rocks are indicators for what might be in the streams, and the streams are indicators for what might be in the rocks.

I will cover in depth where gold is found, and why it is found there, and hopefully some examples of where gold shouldn’t be but is. In many cases you can actually be digging in the richest stream around, and never find the gold. This is something I myself have experienced, and it is frustrating, but it is the persistence and determination that eventually allows you to succeed, and you can’t be afraid to use any opportunity nature provides you to your advantage. If you find exposed bedrock, strip it and process every last bit of material on it you can. This is how I managed to pull gold out of a rich stream that I wasn’t finding colors in previously. If you don’t, someone else will see it and grab what you missed or overlooked.


Mining has received a stereotyped, propagandized reputation from days gone by:

Entire mountains are not mined away like the environmentalists want you to believe. Only the richest portions of the mountains are mined because it would not be profitable just to blast and haul every piece of rock. Only in the case of coal can you have an entire mountain that is mineable, and even then, coal is no good for growing stuff, not even grass or trees, so, get it mined and reclaim the site then you will have a healthier piece of ground that will support plants and wildlife better than before. Also, land that is full of rich ore tends to kill off plants and trees since decomposing ore tends to release gasses and minerals into the soil. This has been documented clear back as far as the 1500’s. Once the ore is mined out, reclaim the land and it will be far better off for nature, and the land will be useable for other things.

The environmentalists are using tax payer dollars to spread propaganda in our classrooms using imagery that is stereotypical but not realistic. I feel it just as important in this part of the book to repudiate the outrageous claims that serve as a battle cry to halt all mining activities on any scale, as I do to educate you in the actual search for gold. There no longer are massive dredges working in their own ponds and lakes that that they created for themselves. No longer do the giants barrage the hillsides with torrential blasts of water capable of killing a man at a hundred feet or more. Hydraulicking has been seen as the destroyer of mountains and as such was banned. It eventually would have been abandoned anyways due to the inefficiencies of capturing gold from such an operation. Even to this day old hydraulic sites are loaded with gold lost in their inefficient methods.

No longer do countless miners dump millions of pounds of mercury into their sluices and into the streams. No longer do multi-million dollar steam powered bucket-line dredges march up and down our waterways scooping up every last cubic yard of pay dirt while burning twenty cords of firewood a day for fuel. Rather, we are in a new era. Bucket line dredges have given way to suction dredges which actually improve fish habitat by cleaning the silt and sediment out from the gravels with the added effect of aerating them. Aquatic plant species native to the streams can then thrive and provide extra oxygen for the fish.

Also, the miners operating these small portable dredges remove mercury and lead, along with common trash from these streams. All of this is done with NO cost to the taxpayer, and there is no proof that a suction dredge has ever killed a fish directly or indirectly. But how many fish have died as a result of fishing poles and nets? Why aren’t they banned? And the discharges from a suction dredge do not come anywhere near the levels of turbidity that fish endure at flood stage. Virtually all of the materials in the discharge drop off onto the streambed within twenty yards

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  • (5/5)
    Excellent book. Detailed information about prospecting. Much expérience and much insight are put into it.
    Thank you