("Learn to observe first...")
J.R., your topic is right on point. In this world of "instant" information, gratification, and specialization (thanks to the Internet) we have lost sight of many things we can and should do ourselves. Even the most obvious things. Remember the lost art of personal "observation?" This secret, passed on by the older generations (like the old time prospectors) is ignored by today's "entitled ones" who want all the answers on their IPADs or smart phones.
Skills like this could become a great equalizer if many of those today could just stop, watch, and listen. These sorts of techniques cross all genders, ages, and nationalities. By observing others who have a great deal more experience and by watching how they do things, not only can you learn things questions could never answer, but you could meld them with your own approaches and create your own personal techniques and methods.
Of course, this can't be accomplished without experience, knowledge, and a willingness to learn...things I feel are lost today. People want to read a few articles or posts from anyone who has an opinion and a website and take it all in as "gospel." They're evidently not smart enough to filter the facts by doing their own research, no matter how long and hard that may be. I myself have wasted far too much time arguing with true morons about something they read on the web! I guess this makes them feel empowered and makes them so-called experts. Truly sad...
("Take it all in as gospel...")
What happens when information is in book form only? Must not be important, or so many today think. When I was a child my parents told me something I still remember to this day, that there are "secrets" in those darn books that life will never teach you! To this day I'm an avid reader and have a library of considerable size. When and if the Internet takes a crap or becomes so censored that the truth is hard to find I'll still have my knowledge base in book form.
Bit of Advice
Now I'll get back to your point about visual prospecting being a dying art...guys like the "Hof*****" couldn't find their asses from a hole in the wall if they weren't being given all the tools, toys, and gold locations that were scouted by others. Even these "others" could use some help as well. My dad used to say 'Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn once in a while.' That pretty much sums it all up. Had they truly learned from their mistakes and combined that with the "art of observation" that particular TV show would not be on the ropes rating wise and they themselves forced to do more "jack-assed" things every season. All just to survive the falling ratings and subsequent drop in advertising dollars.
So here's a bit of advice to those who might need it. Before you go out and become an instant "expert" learn to observe first. Not just watch, but observe and listen. To become an expert at anything takes actual thinking, patience, and problem-solving skills. Whether you're a gold miner, a prospector, or just curious, once you've mastered this "secret" you'll find life will open many doors and opportunities will come your way that were previously unavailable. Especially to those with closed minds. These are the things that make a successful miner and a wise human being.
Thanks for letting me say my piece....your comments really hit home with me. From one "old salt" to another, please continue to tell it like it is. Popular or not, the truth must be told.
Be safe out there!
(c) Anonymous (for Bedrock Dreams) 2013
Questions? E-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org