Tuesday, January 28, 2014

J.R.'s Contrarian Gold Prospecting and Mining Principles (Part 2)

 (Going against the grain.)

Contrarian (going against the grain) principles can be applied in most areas of our daily lives but in this series of posts I'm interested in getting you to see how those very same contrarian principles can be applied to your gold prospecting and mining efforts...hopefully with positive results. Interested in learning more? Then read on my friend.

CONTRARIAN PRINCIPLE #2: Seek Long-Term Results, Not Instant Gratification

When it comes to gold prospecting and mining (and life in general) most of us seek instant gratification. With gold, that means we want to see results right away...a flash of color in our pan with the first sample of dirt or a small nugget unearthed when we rush out the door to swing that new gold detector we just purchased. We want results and we want them NOW.

It's my contention that this constant need for instant gratification is one aspect of a great malaise that infects our society today. Coincidentally, it has the potential to spawn all sorts of potentially negative impacts in terms of the results we strive for...sometimes desperately. To some degree, we're not at fault for acting compulsively this way. We're bombarded each and every day with this sort "quick fix" mentality by the print and electronic media as well as individual hucksters intent on lining their pockets at our expense.

Head hurt or feel depressed? Take this pill or that one and all will be well. Want to lose 50 pounds? Follow this diet or that one, or use this magic exercise machine and in 30 days you'll look like you did at 18 and have abs of steel. Want to get rich quick? Just follow a total stranger's investment directions and next year you'll be cruising the Caribbean on your brand-new yacht. It's easy. Oh, one last thing...did I mention the potential costs, personally and financially, if this instant gratification approach doesn't work out for you?

Gold is Reluctant

I've seen this quick fix mentality at work more times than I can count in my checkered gold prospecting and mining career. I'll also admit I've fallen prey to it at times, especially early on when I was greener than green and more impatient than most "newbies" could ever dream of being. In mining, this sort of instant gratification mode is best expressed by those who arrive at a given gold locale and begin rushing about digging here and there blindly or quickly setting up equipment and running material without really knowing what they can expect from that material in terms of true gold values. It's all about getting a bit of gold quickly. Seeing results instantly.


One thing I've learned over the years about gold in its natural state is that it's very reluctant (in most instances) to reveal itself in size or quantity right away. Sure, if you know your basics you can turn up a bit of color quickly in most spots. That's fine and we've all done this. It's part of the process and the fun. An additional factor is that many of us can only get out and about for short periods of prospecting and mining quality time and we feel compelled to make things happen instantly. Sad, but true.

Deadly Serious?

But I'm here to say that if you're deadly serious about getting decent gold over the long haul you'll need to chain those instant gratification demons in a dark dungeon and go to work for real...slowly, carefully, and thoughtfully. Your time, travel, and expense is better served over the long haul, not the short run. This is especially true if you gain a clearer idea of what's happening with the gold around and underneath you, take the time to sample carefully, and develop a long-term plan for getting the most out of that spot or claim your working. This may mean a larger time commitment and a lot more hard work, but the potential advantage is that one day you'll head home with some really good gold, not just a couple of flakes in a water-filled vial.

In the end, it's all about slowing down and making Mother Nature yield some real treasure...not rushing into things headlong, skipping and skimming for questionable results.

Best of luck out there.

(c) Jim Rocha (J.R.) 2014

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

7 comments:

  1. Hello Jim, You hit the nail on the head with this one! Most folks give up on things too quickly no matter what it is. Gold is worse that way because you feel kinda silly squatting on the stream bank playing in the water like a raccoon with a gold pan if you are not finding something. Once you find a speck or two, you can say "See,look" and folks quit laughing at ya! I have bought a lot of gold pans and critter calls that are suppost to work like magic.....the newest and best. Truth of it is, an old tin plate works just fine as a gold pan. It doesn't need to be fancy with all the gold trapping ridges and things. Sure it helps to have those things, but mainly they are designed to trap the "gold" in your pocket,and most work well for that. Predator calls for coyotes.....I must have a dozen of them....the newest "magic call". Mostly I use the squeeker out of one of my dog's old toys.....works just fine. Like gold, it matters more where you are than what you use. Great post here! Gary

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  2. Thanks much Gary. Glad this one hit home. J.R.

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  3. Great series J.R. Your long term approach is something I’ve been thinking of with respect to the price of gold. We’ve all been reading about how the government is holding the price down and many analyst’s are predicting $3,000/oz before long. Perhaps we should look at some of our prospects from the standpoint of, “would it be profitable at $3,000/oz?” Some of the old mines in our areas might be worthwhile at this price. I’ve recently looked at several old mines and found 0.25 to 0.50 oz. to the ton (free gold) in the tailings (I was “cherry picking”) only to discover, after checking, that big mining companies have filed on the areas and all the possible surrounding area. Frustrating, but the big miners probably have not got it all yet. . . just food for thought.

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  4. Great series J.R. Your long term approach is something I’ve been thinking of with respect to the price of gold. We’ve all been reading about how the government is holding the price down and many analyst’s are predicting $3,000/oz before long. Perhaps we should look at some of our prospects from the standpoint of, “would it be profitable at $3,000/oz?” Some of the old mines in our areas might be worthwhile at this price. I’ve recently looked at several old mines and found 0.25 to 0.50 oz. to the ton (free gold) in the tailings (I was “cherry picking”) only to discover, after checking, that big mining companies have filed on the areas and all the possible surrounding area. Frustrating, but the big miners probably have not got it all yet. . . just food for thought.

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  5. Thanks much Reily...I appreciate it. With gold at $3,000 per ounce, those .25-.50 troy ounces to the ton are potential money makers to be sure. Hang tough out there! J.R.

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  6. $3,000 an ounce? I haven't heard that. Do you think it is possible? Unlikely or likely? Guess I'd better get to digging if it might be true. What I have found so far doesn't amount to much, but if the price gets that high it might be worthwhile.

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  7. Anything is possible these days...back in the 1980s people were going crazy that gold was $600-$800 a tro ounce...dredgers were line up on CA's rivers...myself included. None of us foresaw gold reaching $1,500 an ounce! One never knows...Best, J.R.

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