How to find gold, and where to find gold, are two questions that have been asked by kings and rulers for thousands of years.
Finding gold takes a little work and time
How to find gold and where to find gold is simply a matter of learning the necessary skills and then searching areas that are known to contain gold. In this article we will teach you how to find gold and where to find gold so you can find some gold for yourself.
Let me start off by saying that finding gold in the earths crust is a little difficult for a couple of reasons
First, gold is a very rare element, only occurring in 4 parts per billion in the earths crust
Second, the gold that has been concentrated above 4 parts per billion by mother nature, is rarely found in concentrations high enough to be mined and processed profitably.
Third, many of the highly concentrated, high grade gold deposits on the earths surface have already been found, claimed, and processed over the past 5000 years.
Don’t be discouraged though, there is still a lot of gold left out there if you know where to look. After all, that is what this article is all about, how and where to find gold.
Gold is very heavy, 19 times heavier than water and almost twice as heavy as lead
Because gold is so heavy, it tends to sink below anything that is lighter than itself. For example in a river or stream gold can be found laying on the top of solid rock, also called bedrock, that lies beneath the lighter sands and gravels. Bedrock is simply a solid layer of rock or compacted material that stops the gold from sinking any further into the gravel or earth.
On dry land, rocks that contain gold are exposed to the elements
This gold bearing ore, and gold containing rocks, crack and break apart over time and the gold dust, gold flakes and gold nuggets get washed into the lower valleys and gullies by the wind and rain.
The loose gold accumulates in the bottom of these valleys or at a point on the hillside where something stops the gold from its downward path such as a large bolder.
Gold is also stopped by large cracks or crevices in exposed rocks and solid, objects on a dry hillside. These are good places to look for gold, especially if you are in a known gold bearing area.
The same is true when looking for gold in a stream
Where the water current slows down, the gold is bound to drop out of the fast moving current and settle into the gravel. In front of, and behind large boulders is a good place to look.
Also look for gold where the stream widens out or slows down.
This happens around bends in the river
For example, in Utah, Horseshoe Bend on the Green River is where a lot of fine gold has been dropped as the water has slowed down around this sharp bend.
Prospectors look for gold dust and small gold flakes on the inside bends of the Green River. This is one place to find gold that has been dropping out of the fast moving current for hundreds if not thousands of years.
Once gold has dropped out of the fast moving current, it will stay there and make its way down to the bedrock. Gold will stay there until a large flood or large spring runoff moves all boulders, large rocks and gravels down stream, where it will settle out again in the slower moving waters.
Every year a certain amount of gold will be washed off the hillsides and into rivers and streams, where it will join the other gold flakes and gold nuggets moving on down stream with each spring runoff. The answer to the questions, how to find gold and where to find gold, should be getting a little clearer now.
Gold is found in low places, on top of bedrock, behind and in front of obstructions
Gold that has moved from its source rock and accumulated in these locations is called placer gold. Placer gold is not just found in rivers and streams, it also accumulates on dry ground in valleys and in rock crevices. Placer gold is the gold that most weekend prospectors look for because it has been concentrated over a long period of time and is fairly easy to find if you are in a gold bearing area.
Gold that is found in solid rock within the earth is called load gold. It is the original gold deposit that was created when the earth was forming. These load deposits of gold and other precious metals are what hard rock miners look for.
Load gold can at times be very concentrated and is the source of gold that gets broken down by water and wind erosion to eventually form a placer deposit in a valley or stream.
Locating a load deposit of gold requires a different technique that finding a gold placer deposit
A good knowledge of geology and mineral associations is important. Most load deposits of gold are found or discovered by sampling and testing rocks from outcroppings, which is simply an exposed rock formation.
Hard rock miners look for quartz veins and specific types of rocks that often contain gold such as Dolomite, Schist, Gneiss, Quartz, and Black Shale. Specific minerals and certain basic elements are also a clue as to where to find gold.
Most of the gold load deposits that have broken the earths surface, as rock outcroppings, have been discovered and claimed. There is only a small chance of finding a new undiscovered gold bearing rock formation. With that said, your best bet for finding gold in a load deposit is to look for old mines in known gold producing areas.
Searching for old abandoned gold mines , especially after a large forest fire that removes the surface vegetation hiding many of these old mines, can be rewarding.
There are many of these old mines located in the hills and mountains in the western states
We don’t suggest entering or exploring these old mines as they can be dangerous. You can however find gold and silver ore in many of the dump piles of these old abandoned mines.
Today many miners are re-claiming these old mine dumps and processing the low grade ore at a nice profit due to the rise of the price of gold and silver and improved precious metal recovery techniques.
The question of how to find gold and where to find gold would not be complete without touching on the topic of recycling gold. “Home Gold Refining” or “Backyard Refiners”, along with some very large corporations, are finding gold in old computers, cell phones, and other electronic devices.
Thousands of tons of electronic scrap are refined each year for their gold and precious metal content
Some individuals know how to find gold and are recovering gold from old computers, especially if the computers were built in the 1980’s. Some of these personal computers have up to a 1/2 oz of gold in them.
The newer computers do not have nearly the amount of gold that the older computers have, but it is still profitable to recover the gold by using various gold recover techniques.