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Thread: Small time prospecting

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2009
    Central California

    Default Small time prospecting

    My intent is to bring a sluice up to Alaska with me.... do some camping, fishing, and small time prospecting. My wife says 'so what are you going to do if you find a gold nugget.... the land isn't yours you can't keep it'... and she's stuck on that note.... I have told her I don't intend to dredge or wash away any mountain ranges (lol)

    No doubt this is covered in books, etc... regulations regarding prospecting.. but for a quick answer, what's the limit? How DO you draw the line between small time prospecting and something that would rile up the powers that be?

  2. #2
    Premium Member kasilofchrisn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Central Kenai Peninsula


    What it all comes down to is who owns the mineral rights where you are mining and wether or nor you have permission to prospect there.
    There are several areas in the state open to prospecting that have been set aside for recreational prospecting. One of the most popular is near Hope and there are others if you do a little searching. In these areas you can keep all the gold you find but are usually limited in gear types allowed.
    There are also pay to dig sites in Alaska Crow creek mine in Girdwood is the most popular among recreational prospectors.There is also Ganes creek and Moore Creek witch are pay to metal detect areas with great nugget potential but also high costs.
    And then you have clubs like the Gold Prospectors Association of America(GPAA) who have claims for paid members to use as well as a large camp near Nome witch you pay by the week to prospect on.
    All of these sites let you keep any and all gold you find including nuggets after paying your fees.
    The one sure way to rile up the powers that be is to prospect with equipment that is not allowed or prospecting in closed areas. You would also not want to prospect on a private mining claim without permission from the claim owner.
    Stick to an open public area or pay for a place like Crow Creek mine.
    Crow creek is a great place to mine with reasonable small nugget potential with a sluice box.
    So your wife is wrong and you can tell her I said so.
    If you can find a copy of the book where to prospect for gold in Alaska without getting shot By Ron Wendt it is a great book for the recreational prospector.
    It is out of print since Rons death several years ago but you might find an old copy somewhere. I had an extra one but last summer I sent it to Drifter016.
    Any more questions be sure to ask.
    "The closer I get to nature the farther I am from idiots"

    "Fishing and Hunting are only an addiction if you're trying to quit"

  3. #3
    Member DRIFTER_016's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2007
    Yellowknife, NWT


    Chris is right, we became millionaires this past fall.
    We spent 1/2 a day in the pouring rain running material through his high banker and shooting the bull.
    The outcome was a new friendship, some excercise, tall tales and a few flakes of gold.
    It was a good day.


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