Take Your Time

After three decades plus I still get excited and hyped up when it comes to making a gold prospecting or mining foray. Enthusiasm is a necessary ingredient in any pursuit or avocation and if you don't enjoy what you're doing then something's amiss with the overall picture.

That said, I have a simple suggestion for you when it comes to your prospecting and mining endeavors. Take your time.

Not Always the Best Approach

Many of you probably find yourselves in situations where you can't mine or prospect on a daily basis and your time out in the field is limited to a day here and there, weekends, or an annual trip to your own special spot. If this is true, don't feel bad...you have plenty of company out there.

Mining Equipment
Gold Concentrates
Gold Concentrators
However, the tendency in these sorts of situations is to rush around and to try and get in as much quality mining time as you can possibly squeeze in and to hell with everything else. This is not always the best approach, brothers and sisters. Trust me, I know...in fact I've been guilty of this myself on occasion.

Unique Characteristics

You should know by now that I'm a straight shooter and won't steer you wrong. So I'm here to tell you to slow down some, take your time out there, and in the end...recover more gold over the long haul.

"How so?" you ask. Well, for starters, each and every mining locale (wet or dry) has its own unique characteristics and gold deposition factors, and rushing around digging here and there in a "willy nilly" fashion like a chicken with its head cut off will not serve you well in the end.

Ditto for racing to set up your dry washer or highbanker so you can start running dirt BEFORE you know where the best gold values really are. Sure, you might get lucky once in a while but over time you'll come to the realization that this sort of approach is detrimental to your overall success.

 "Eyeball" Things a Bit

What do I mean by taking your time? When you first arrive at that spot of yours, pour yourself a cup of coffee and sit down and "eyeball" things for a bit. Gain a visual sense of what's happening around you in terms of the overall lay out and potential gold deposition factors based on you what you've learned from past knowledge and experience (and from yours truly).

 (Try "eyeballing" your surroundings more closely.)

Walk around a bit and look more closely at areas of "potential" you've already identified. Then, and only then, grab your basic gear and start sampling. If this means you "psych" thing outs or sample the entire day or the entire weekend then so be it.

That Gold Isn't Going Anywhere

The gold that's waiting for you in that stream or dry wash isn't going anywhere any time soon. More than likely, it'll still be there the next time you arrive on scene, or the time after that and when you do finally get to mining with a vengeance, chances are you'll do well.

Once again, take your time. If for no other reason than to enjoy your surroundings and the beauty of the mountains or deserts...after all, we do what we do not only for the yellow metal but for the gold that can't be seen or bought.

Rewards Will Come

You and I both know that small-scale gold mining and prospecting is vastly different than our daily lives where we're forced to rush around to jobs we don't particularly like or to handle the responsibilities of relationships, raising kids, and paying those endless bills. So why rush around when it comes to doing what you love?

Slow down a bit and the rewards you seek will come of their own volition. That's a promise from one who knows...

If you liked this post, you may want to read: "Tips on 'Seeing' Where the Gold Is (Part 1)"

(c)  Jim Rocha (J.R.)  2012

Questions? E-mail me at jr872vt90@yahoo.com


  1. Good Advice J.R.

    One of my big regrets is not taking the time to keep better notes when I'm sampling. Getting better at it, but took me a while to realize that in my hurry to dig the next sample I'm neglecting to take note of items that would get me on to better gold quicker.


  2. Cal, you make an excellent point here and it's very true. Thanks for commenting and my best to you. J.R.


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