Gila River with water...

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...slightly OT, but I saw a strange site coming home tonight. The Gila River at Hwy 347 south of Phx had flowing water--I think it had flash flooded somewhere maybe 50 miles to the east or so--I've never seen water in it over here before now. I checked out realtime stream flow and that was the most flow since January 1993 (4 ft at gauge). Just another reason to stay out of washes during flash floods I guess. I doubt it washed down any gold though ;)


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Hello Dwight,

I heard the Gila River has some gold, but probably mostly fine. Plus the fact the River is so wide and deep if there are nuggets you would never reach them with even a good detector. Don't know much about the area in general, but if one was going to poke around they would have a much better chance in the side drainages and potentially old benches of the Gila.

Take care,

Rob Allison

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while it is possible to locate nuggets in a wash, one has to bear in mind that gold works its way downward, and any vibration of the stream bed by floods and lighter material churning, accelerates the gold action to seek the lower or lowest horizon.

In other words, smaller gold takes the longest to settle out while larger gold has the shortest 'trip' to the bedrock, or false bedrock.

For the detectorist, this places many nuggets simply out of range.

however, for the 'broad band' (not that kind of 'broad') miner, it opens up possibilities for those drywashing, wet washing, recirc systems, sluicing, as getting closer to the paystreak by digging holes, allows one to get the small gold, while accessing lower levels where bigger gold may be detectable with a metal detector. There is a lot more small gold than big gold, but the physical effortnmay be less and the payoff more if the bigger stuff can be retrieved.

For those able to work as a team and share expenses, using a backhoe to dig out an area and spread the pile, on guy works the tractor while others search for spoils with a detector. the split depends on the number of participants. A lot of people in the desert resort to this means as sagebrush or other vegetation, or simply erosion, can pack dirt really tight, to tight sometimes to even work with anything less than explosives or a tractor.

Getting to the paystreak also opens up possibilities for additional finds, once one can recognize the right strata by measurement, color, or mineral makeup. And, if no other work is going to take place, it's a simple matter to backfill the area and restore the working area to near original condition. Besides, if it is paying, why leave a 'road sign' for others to swoop in and kill your own future potential?

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