How the forums have changed my life

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Well I have to tell you guys, the forums have really changed my life, for the better.

For twenty years, on and off I was a long haul truckdriver. I was always on the road, never had much time to really make permenat friends, just other driver I would meet at the truckstops now and then. I got burn't out on the road in the late 80's and took all my money I had saved and bought a $3000.00 motorhome and a metaldetector and a brand new 5 inch dredge and moved to Bagby. It was privately owned back then and was really diffferent, than it is today, no limit on the # of days you could stay and it was only $6.00 a night. $8.00 with the dredge. You could leave your dredge in all year and there was no season for dredging. Well Bill the guy that had a 99 year lease on it, took a liking to me, he offered me free rent+ hook ups and $750.00 amonth to help run the place, I had two days off a week, Mondays and Tuesday. I used my time to dredge or detect. I have found some really nice gold, dredging and detecting I found some really good coins, including a 1811 french 20 franc gold coin. Well as time passed 5 years working there I got remarried, My wife and I decided to go back to long haul. I did that until 96, when I had a massive heart attack. Well they took my class A lic. from me and said I could'nt drive truck anymore. Since then I have had 5 more heart attacks. But I'm still kicking. Well I got into this nuggethunting because of that, I was going crazy sitting home. I just had to have something to keep me going. I found gold nugget hunting to be most relaxing, and I was hooked. I had found several nuggets, my first being a 7.4 DWT and a 4 DWt. very first nuggets I ever found with a detector. within two months I had found 100's. Lucky me. Then I got a computor, an old slow used one, for $50.00 and connected to the internet. Thats when I found the forums and many new found friends. Some I have never met, some I have and are my best friends. among them areShep, Jerry{pondmn} Jerry{sand trap} Rob, Dennis, Brent, Flak, Bill S Accron, And that just the ones I have hunted with. Many more of you, like Largo, Lizzardchaser, SGTFDA, Garimpo, I haven't had the chance yet, But I'll miss JJ, and Stan the Man. The forums give me life and friendship, knowledge to learn and some to share. Thank all that have the forums. And to those that go that extra mile to help others out. Thats REAL GOLD. Grubstake And too all the ones I haven't named, and the ones I will meet in the future, heres to you!

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Very interesting post.

There are some incredible people on these gold forums.

I have learned not only how to prospect for gold and how to run my detector

with the patient advice both in person and online, of many people.

I have been reminded many times here that when people

share their experiences and their thoughts

it is one of the most potent and valuable ways to learn.

I never particularly liked school,

but has been a very enjoyable education

on many levels.


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Wow. 5 heart attacks? Grubstake, take it easy!

The internet has changed all of our lives. The information available to anyone with internet access today is staggering. Forums provide an interaction which was never possible before. My thanks go out to Rob for giving us this opportunity to share our thoughts and experiences and to meet great people like Grubstake.

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I think the lessons learned here from people you have never met yet are willing to give is priceless. As many years as I have spent mining and prospecting, I had become a total loner. One night I found Rob's site and sit back and watched to see how the people interacted. I joined in and its been a blessing. Between here and Bill's site, I have made many new friends and have learned alot. Most importantly, I've been able to contribute and share freely what I've learned. I hope to meet you in Sept. so we can both put a face and to each other and share a cup of coffee and stories. If the weather is nice and we can hunt great, but to me just to meet in person is golden.


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Hi Grubstake,

It really strange just how much value a person can put on a computer.

When your computer isn't working correctly, its like a piece of your life is missing.

The computer can be your best friend, or your worst enemy.

It can be the listening post that you can lay your lifes worries on,

And it never talks back unless you want it to. EX: Get on a real hot forum discussion... :rolleyes:

It will always be there waiting for you to return,

Like your favorite hound, except you don't have to feed it

Or clean up after it.

You have given us a lot to think about, sharing your great stories

About gold huntin' and gold findin', and about Uncle and Shep.

You have shared with us across the miles, adventures lived,

And the deep sorrow and hurt of a sick wife or relative.

You have given all of us, a great deal to more fully

Appreciate those things we have, and remind us all

That we should never take life for granted,

As it can all end in the span of a heartbeat.

We thank you, Grubstake, for making our lives

A little better, by sharing your daily adventures,

Or misadventures, with us all!


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I havent known Gary very long but I do know he is always willing to go out of his way to help another.

He dosen't have a greedy bone in his body in todays day and age that is hard to find in a person.

I noticed the other day when we were out detecting for him it was more about being out in the woods with friends than deteting.

Hopefully we can share many more adventures together.

Thanks for all the pointers you have given me in setting up my detector.

I to miss the old days down at Bagby when Bill used to have it. There was dredges lined up and down the river and allways a dozen or so miners scurrying about.

It's all but gone now I should conseder myself lucky to have been there and seen it.

Stay Cool,Matt

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Gotta agree with Grubby. Have learned alot from all the forums, but most especially met many new people, with a common interest (enjoying the outdoors and life; and oh- gold). Like the get-togethers also, when you can put real faces on people.

Headed to the hole in about 1/2 hour for a couple of days and try to "Montanaize" it with a small coil and alot of patience.

Take care, Shep

Tried calling Grubby, but got your answering machine-

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Yep you did Shep, today was our Merced Day, once a month trip for groceries, can't afford to shop here in rip-off city{mariposa} geared for torist not folks like me. High prices that the tourist don't have a choise but to pay, or drive a 50 mile one way trip to get it. You guys make a bunch, its just too hot for me, 103 is a bit much and hotter tomarrow. Grubstake

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Gary, don't feel like the lone ranger. I usually find myself a long way from reasonably priced groceries so I stock up when I can and make the 30, 40 or 50 mile trip when I have to. When I see things priced at 50 cents to a dollar higher - per item! - than what I have to pay at Walmart, I just say "no".

I also buy things on eBay and get them shipped to me rather than drive to the big city and pay the big money. Last year I saved over $2K on a set of Michelin tires for the Slim Mobile even after paying for shipping from Atlanta to Vegas.

Speaking of eBay, I get a lot of professional advice from people who sell things there. My oil pressure gauge went haywire a couple weeks ago (rapidly going up and down from 0 to 75 psi) and I couldn't find information anywhere on the web. Finally I contacted a guy selling an oil pressure switch on eBay. He told me it was either a loose ground wire or a bad switch.

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I couldn't agree with you more Grubstake Gary.... The internet and the members of these forums have changed my life forever. I've since fulfilled a couple of my lifelong dreams...finding a gold nugget and traveling to Alaska. I've said it before and will say it again, the people I've met through these forums and this nugget hunting hobby are some of the nicest folks that I have ever met. Always willing to share, help with great advice and or lend a hand when one needs help. I salute you all and thank my lucky star for guiding me here...

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  • Admin

Hello Guys,

I'm sure the forums have touched thousands of prospectors across the Globe. I can remember when I first started dredging/detecting there wasn't any forums available. The price of gold per ounce was less than $300, so you wouldn't even see a sole in the goldfields. You pretty much had to know someone already doing it or learn on your own (the hard way). I purchased every book available on panning, gold dredging/high-banking and detecting available. I was also taking a few Geology courses at the local College hoping they would help me out. Thank God for Jim Straight's books, they were a wealth of information and I learned a lot real quickly.

Several years later there was BBS, or Internet Bulletin Boards. They were so hard to follow, and most didn't even have Internet connector, or how to find these BB Boards. However, there were a few Internet savvy prospectors typing on them. I did meet some people on these, but most were in different States and not the most helpful.

One night I sat down and thought about starting a small Website business, since I had such a passion for dredging and metal detecting for gold. Really didn't have a clue how to start, but gathered all I could and gave it a whirl. Pretty much done everything from scratch didn't have any help, so it took much longer than normal. I was finally able to get my Website up on the net. With the Website up and running, I was able to post pictures, stories and a ton of information about nuggethunting. Within about 3 months I was receiving over 100 emails per day.

Not long after that the Internet forums came along. The first forum, if I remember correctly, was a Free Yahoo Forum that everyone used to get onto. Man, it has thousands of members and was fun to read every night. It was a nightly deal to come home and see what the latest discussions were on the Yahoo Gold Forum.

Eventually the forums started to split up, with others developing their own. I decided a forum would go well with my Website and finally got one started.

With the use of my forum, I have conducted business and met prospectors around the World. The forums are a wealth of information and were not available when I first started. There's probably more valuable information on the forums than you can get from any one book.

While some people seem to come and go on the forums, I have met some special friends.

Thank You all for being my friend. :)

Rob Allison

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I've learned a lot and have had a lot more fun because of these forums, that's for sure. Also it is good because it keeps you going just reading the posts and seeing the gold being found. Gives me ideas on how to prospect. Real nice to have friends that like to do the same stuff I do too.

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Hey the forums are great - I missed some of the early days even though I activly participated discussing other topics during the old bulletin board days.

Hey on there forums I've gotten to meet and get to know great guys like Grubstake, Shep, Rob and Gaine.


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  • 4 weeks later...

Best thing I've found on forums was my wife! LOL

Yep. Sweetie and I met online, chatted for a couple of years, then she and her son came down for a 3 week visit....and never went back. The rest, as Paul Harvey would say, is history. :D

Course, finding this forum and all of ya'll is a darn good thing, too! LOL


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I've always been interested in gold, but I really didn't learn much til I started getting into the forums. The experiences of folks like Grubstke and others is like a manual on the how to's and don't do's. Like the fellow on one post had to go to the bushes and when his pants were down a donkey came up behind him and brayed really loud. Don't offend the wildlife :lol:

Just my 2 cents ;) Wyndham

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