Gold in the Midwest: Placer Gold in the Saint Croix River (Conclusion)
(Another view of "The Dalles.")
Fines, Flakes, and Gold Nuggets
As you read in my first post on this topic, part of the Saint Croix River bordering Wisconsin and Minnesota at a location known as "The Dalles" contains placer gold. This includes fines, flakes, and gold nuggets up to 1/3 troy ounce.
Back in 1902, the Minnesota Engineering and Mining Journal contained a detailed write up on the placer gold deposits in the Saint Croix River so if you do a bit of research and can unearth a copy of this treatise, you'll gain some very interesting information on gold in the "The Dalles" area.
300 Feet of Placer Gold
In the materials I was able to research on placer gold in the Saint Croix, there's a small section on some sampling done in the in river gravels about three miles north of Saint Croix Falls. Test pan after test pan consistently yielded 1-10 colors which suggests that some pretty decent gold values exist in the area, especially along the basalt bedrock of "The Dalles" itself.
Where to Find Placer Gold
(The Saint Croix Falls area.)
There is also an account of a solitary gold miner who dug a 300-foot trench through the Saint Croix's gold-bearing gravels near "The Dalles" and ran those gravels through a sluice box set up. This individual recovered over 60 troy ounces of placer gold from that operation. Yep, you heard right...60 troy ounces!
Decent Potential for Recovering Gold
This said however, the placer gold deposits in the Saint Croix River are considered to be of little interest to commercial mining interests. They are after bigger fish to fry, so this leaves decent potential for you recreational and small-scale gold miners in Minnesota and Wisconsin to recover some good gold.
Gold Panning Kits
If you're interested in getting some gold from the Saint Croix (and especially "The Dalles" area) you should concentrate on locations where exposed bedrock exists and where the river and its tributaries cut their way through local gravel beds. Be advised, however, that the construction of the power dam at Saint Croix Falls ensured that some gold-bearing locations were covered by river water.
Good luck to you.
If you liked this post, you may want to read: "Can I Make a Living Gold Mining? (Part 4"
(c) Jim Rocha (J.R.) 2012
Questions? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org