Gold Prospecting with a Metal Detector- Signs Pointing to Gold

An example of gold that can be found with a metal detector. Located recently by a MetalDetector.com customer in New England.

An example of gold that can be found with a metal detector. Located recently by a MetalDetector.com customer in New England.

Spring is here! And gold season is quickly approaching… So, here are a few prospecting tips to get you excited and ready to strike gold! Luckily, there are geological clues that point to gold. Just like you can read the soil for indicators of metal treasure, you can look for visual evidence when gold prospecting. Where is gold found? Often, it  is found in low places; definitely on top of bedrock and in front of obstructions that prevent it from moving further. Gold that has accumulated as a result of moving downriver is called placer gold. However, placer gold is not just found in rivers, it also accumulates on dry ground in valleys and rock crevices. Placer gold is a popular target because it has concentrated over a long period of time and is fairly easy to find if you are in gold bearing country.

Five Indicators that Gold May be Present:

  1. Rock Types for Gold are Nearby: If a certain rock type is known to be productive for gold in one zone, and the same rock type exists nearby, this is a good place to search.
  2. Lighter Colored Rocks: If you notice out-of-place colors in a group of rock formations, it can be a gold indicator. Acidic mineral solutions in gold areas can bleach the rocks to a lighter color.
  3. Presence of Quartz: Quartz is a common indicator that gold MAY be nearby. This is not always true. The hydrothermal conditions needed for gold deposits are also right for quartz. Quartz is more plentiful—so most gold deposits contain quartz, but most quartz deposits do not contain gold.
  4. Coexisting Rock Types: Most gold ores (and placer gold) contain small amounts of silver, copper, iron, garnet other minerals. These favorable host rocks can be important when determining gold prospecting zones.
  5. Abrupt Geological Shifts: Hard rock gold deposits are known to occur at the contact of two different types of rock. Example: one zone in New Mexico has rich dry placers; then just down the road is coal-bearing country. Not far from there is a turquoise mine. Detecting on the borderline of these zones can prove to be lucrative.

These are just a few tips. Reading gold prospecting books and articles can REALLY point you in the right direction! Check out our Learning Library for gold prospecting advice and our favorite gold-prospecting metal detectors!

Articles on our Best Gold Metal Detectors:

Whites TDI SL Metal Detector- Ultimate Gold & Relic PI Machine

Whites TDI SL Metal Detector

Whites TDI SL Metal Detector

Find tiny gold flakes or gold ‘pickers’ with Whites TDI SL Metal Detector—the ultimate gold nugget shooting detector! Pulse induction machines are known to penetrate deeper and handle highly mineralized soil. Whites TDI SL features full-control ground balance to filter out hot rocks, black sand and more. Trademarked features of this model include its lightweight design, threshold control, frequency control, pulse delay and waterproof search coil. At only 3.5 lbs., Whites TDI SL performs comparably to a much more expensive counterpart!

Proven Gold Prospecting Metal Detector

 According to TDI SL user Dan from Southern California, “the TDI SL is easiest to ground balance and produces a constant smooth threshold even in nasty mineralized soil.” It’s also a champion relic-hunting detector!

 

Related ArticleSelecting the Best Metal Detectors for Gold Nugget Metal Detecting

Whites Spectra VX3 Metal Detector- a “Dream Machine!”

Whites Spectra VX3 Metal Detector

Whites Spectra VX3 Metal Detector

Satisfied owners of the Whites Spectra VX3 Metal Detector say this IS the RIGHT detector for serious hobbyists! “The VX3 continues to produce more good finds than any other machine I have used in the past 30+ years!” So, what sets the Whites Spectra VX3 apart? First of all—it has all the bells and whistles of the highest-end detector with the ‘turn-on-and-go’ ease of Whites Coinmaster. Most importantly: 8 pre-set operating modes include: •Coin,  Coin/Jewelry, • Salt Beach, • Relic, • Prospecting, • Deep Silver, • Hi-Pro, • Demo. Modify any of the programs to suit your needs!

Whites Spectra VX3 is also “deluxe” because it features 3 frequencies: 2.5 kHz, 7.5 kHz, and 22.5 kHz for each type of treasure hunting. Spectra VX3’s high-resolution backlit display screen has target ID icons, VDI numbers, SpectraGraph technology and much more! Equipped for optional wireless VX3 headphones.

See all models of Whites metal detectors

Garrett AT Pro Finds Gold Nugget in Quebec

Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector

Garrett AT Pro Metal Detector

Finding gold with a metal detector may seem like mission impossible; and it does require a lot of patience. HOWEVER, gold prospecting hobbyists assure that you CAN FIND GOLD with your metal detector. According to the late Charles Garrett (world famous treasure hunter, inventor and author) and veteran prospector Roy Lagal, any amateur prospector who follows three basic rules can find gold!

  1. Choose the right type of metal detector- capable of locating gold flakes and nuggets.
  2. Have patience and perseverance.
  3. Hunt in places where gold has already been found.

Gold-hunting detectors have proven themselves time and again, and most of them can expertly find coins and relics, as well. To prove that you can find gold, we’ve included below a video link: “Gold in Quebec” showing a hobbyist recovering a gold nugget from a stream. This prospector was hunting “Devil’s Rapid” in Quebec. Using the Garrett AT Pro, he heard a high-pitched gold signal. From there, he pinpointed the target in a bedrock crack under the water. Using a gold pan and running his detector over it, the prospector recovered a gold nugget that weighed in at 0.8 ounces. Another video depicts two prospectors hunting old tailing piles with the Garrett AT Gold. Although they didn’t hit pay dirt on this outing, they demonstrate the proper techniques for prospecting. A gold pan kit is essential when prospecting rivers and streams.

At MetalDetector.com, find everything you need for prospecting for Gold Nuggets, including:

Related Article: “What’s the Best Gold Prospecting Metal Detector?”
Related Article: “Garrett AT Pro Versus Garrett AT Gold Comparison”

Whites Spectra V3i Metal Detector – Deeper Targets, Detailed Target Information. You Bet!

White's V3i Metal Detector with Color Display Screen

White’s V3i Metal Detector with Color Display Screen

The Whites Spectra V3i Metal Detector is Whites premier, deluxe model! Feature-packed beyond belief, this unit provides an incredible amount of target data. Graphs and charts on Spectra V3i’s full-color HD display easily separate valuable targets from junk. The display screen reveals VDI#, icon with your likely target and on-the-fly depth reading; also, the backlight and font are adjustable. This is a true 3-frequency detector featuring 2.5 kHz, 7.5 kHz, and 22.5 kHz. Spectra V3i’s 3×3 Target ID System is extremely impressive! Using 3 separate displays, the “Search” screen graphs your target in each frequency; “Analyze” shows target size and characteristics and the “Pinpoint” screen shows the signal strength in each frequency. Enjoy “Live Controls” for real-time adjustments and dozens of Expert Menu Options! 9 Preset Hunting Programs include: • Coin/Jewelry, • Salt Beach, • Relic, • Prospecting, • Deep Silver, • High Trash, • Meteorite, • High Pro, • Mixed Mode Pro. Owners of Whites Spectra V3i promise you get more target information than you’ve ever seen. “The V3i sees targets at extreme depth and fully interprets them. This lets the person using the V3i hunt more targets more efficiently!”

Whites Spectra V3i Wireless Headphones are highly recommended! Comfortable over-stuffed earpieces allow you to hear every signal with clarity. Syncs perfectly—in one word… wireless.

 

 

 

Australian Prospector Unearths 8-Pound Gold Nugget- Worth Nearly $200,000!

Found with a Metal Detector, the Gold Nugget above has Been Dubbed "Friday's Joy"

Found with a Metal Detector, the Gold Nugget above has Been Dubbed “Friday’s Joy”

Another extremely large gold nugget  has been discovered with a metal detector! Just recently (August, 2016), a detecting hobbyist was hunting a field in Central Victoria, Australia, when his detector went crazy. He thought it was just a horseshoe, but decided to dig it up anyway. To his amazement, the detectorist (who wishes to remain anonymous) saw something huge shimmering below him! “As I scraped away the clay and dug deeper, I couldn’t believe my eyes. This wasn’t an old piece of steel. I had just unearthed a colossal gold nugget – a once in a lifetime find! I didn’t think nuggets of this size were still around.” The 8-pound nugget was found 12 inches deep, and has been estimated upwards of $190,000.

Is this a “Mini Gold Rush?”

Interestingly, the man says this field is a worked-over area, but he found a 9-ounce nugget the day before. That’s why he returned to the area in hopes of finding more. The prospector will also be sharing the nugget’s proceeds with his hobbyist friends. He explained that they all previously agreed that they would split any royalties if treasure was ever found. This gold nugget find is creating a worldwide craze, according to Australian news reports. Rita Bentley, from the Prospectors and Miners Association, said she believes there will be a mini gold rush in Australia. Says Bentley, “I would imagine there will be some new people who thought, ‘I’ve always wanted to try that,’ and this will be what pushes them over the edge. Buy a detector and a miner’s right and get out there!” It’s incredible to know that there are nuggets of gold out there this size these days. In fact, a huge gold nugget was found in Northern California not too long ago. If you’ve always wanted to try your hand at gold prospecting, NOW is the TIME!

 

Related Article: Gold Nugget Hunting with a Metal Detector

Monster Gold Nugget Found in Butte County, California

The dream of finding gold is still alive! This is exciting news for amateur prospectors, who really just want to snag a small nugget for simple gold satisfaction. Long-time detectorist and web blogger “Digger Bob” shares a success story that is encouraging and motivational for amateur gold prospectors! His story: a “monster” gold nugget was found in the Butte foothills in Northern California. Weighing in at 6.25 troy lbs. and 75 oz., this huge nugget was discovered with a metal detector at a depth of 12″. The nugget was deposited on a small feeder creek/stream which fed from the main water channel.

Gold Detectors will ALL Find Gold

“Digger Bob” believes that any decent gold detector could have located this nugget, but says that it originally sounded like a trash signal. Because small nuggets had previously been detected in the same area, he knew to dig it up anyways. Gold detectorists always advise digging up ALL targets for this exact reason. Many times gold signals get ID’ed as trash targets – then turn up as gold. As it turns out, this huge gold nugget was sold at an auction for approximately $400,000!. “Digger Bob” points out that it IS really like hitting the lottery or finding your own “retirement fund.” The point is—gold is still absolutely out there, waiting to be discovered!

Common gold states include:  Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Florida, Idaho, Louisiana, Mississippi, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming.

Search and Compare all Gold Metal Detectors at MetalDetector.com

 

Whites MXT All Pro Metal Detector – The Gold Standard Among Detectors!

Whites MXT All Pro Metal Detector

Whites MXT All Pro Metal Detector

What makes the Whites MXT All Pro Metal Detector one of the elite units among the competition? This detector takes discrimination to a whole new level! The VDI numbers on Whites MXT All Pro differentiate this model with detailed information between junk and valuable targets. It’s easy to learn the VDI number of coins (separating clad from silver), rings and jewelry, gold and pull tabs with Whites MXT All Pro. MXT All Pro boasts 3 SEPARATE programs designed for specific treasure hunting. Each program: • Relic, • Prospecting and • Coin/Jewelry features its own unique display screen, target response and special audio frequencies. Additionally, Whites MXT All Pro is redesigned with an ALL-NEW KEYPAD for simplicity in the field, brand new “Ground Grab” functionality and high-efficiency display backlighting.

Did you know? We stock all models of Whites Metal Detectors here at MetalDetector.com including accessories for all current Whites detectors.

BRAND NEW Whites MX Sport Waterproof Detector is Generating Excitement!

The All-New Whites MX Sport Waterproof Metal Detector

The All-New Whites MX Sport Waterproof Metal Detector

Now in Stock – The All-New Whites MX Sport Waterproof Metal Detector is creating a frenzy in popular metal detecting forums. Members can’t wait to get their hands on the new Whites MX Sport metal detector which is a waterproof model. With a design that the engineers at whites went back to the drawing-board for, the Whites MX Sport is a lightweight mid-frequency VLF detector that is waterproof up to 10 feet. Seven search modes for beach or land hunting include: Coin/Jewelry, Beach, Relic, Prospecting, High Trash, All-Metal, Pinpoint. MX Sport’s large backlit display shows VDI number, Target ID, depth, current program and discrimination. This model features 20 Target ID segments, 22 Tone Audio ID, threshold control, Automatic Ground Balance and a 10″ DD Waterproof Search Coil. Land headphones are included with the detector and the MX Sport waterproof headphones are available as an option. Whites has really outdone themselves—this model is a winner!

Whites MX Sport Review: You can also read a review of the Whites MX Sport metal detector recently submitted by a customer of MetalDetector.com

Gold Prospecting: Gear Up for That Time of Year

Gold found with the new Makro Gold Racer metal detector

Gold recently found with the new Makro Gold Racer metal detector.

Is there a gold prospecting season? This is a common question across metal detecting forums. There is no hard and fast rule about when you can prospect in most states. However, in Alaska, gold prospecting season runs from June through September—only into October if the weather permits. In other known prospecting states: California, Nevada, North Carolina, New Mexico, there are no posted prospecting dates. It is important to note, though—many sites DO require permission to prospect if you plan to stake any claims.

Why the Rise in Gold Prospecting Recently?

Gold prospecting seems to be spiking again in recent years, and geologists theorize as to why. In California, droughts in recent years are cited as one of the reasons. California State University (Sacramento) geology department executive, Tim Horner, explained that amateur prospectors “have been able to get to places they couldn’t before” because the drought has shrunk many of the state’s rivers, “some down to a trickle.” Horner said that one of his students recently found about $900 worth of gold in a stream that had previously been too treacherous to explore. He added, “Looking for gold [the old-fashioned way] is a popular hobby, and some people are making a living doing it.”

The simplest way to get into prospecting is to comb through sediments along a riverbank. Gold is 19 times heavier than water and denser than other particles in a stream, so it quickly settles to the bottom or into cracks between rocks or grains. A park ranger who oversees the California Bear River Campground and Recreation Area has his own theory about why gold prospecting is gaining momentum. He suggests, “The relatively high price of gold and the relatively weak economy have brought out more prospectors in recent years. The fact that low water means they can wade further upstream and get to new areas is advantageous.”

Top-Rated Prospecting Metal Detectors

Since gold occurs in nature at different levels of purity and different levels of concentration, the phase shift for gold objects appears along a wide spectrum on the phase shift dial. “Phase shift” is the difference in timing between the transmitter coil’s frequency and the frequency of the target object. Basically, this means that an object with high inductance is going to have a larger phase shift, so it is highly beneficial to use a prospecting metal detector when hunting for gold. Some machines dedicated to gold prospecting eliminate coin identification features altogether, since you’re not looking for coins. Instead they rely on sounds alone, using  a low tone for base metals, and a high-pitched signal for gold. Among some of the best detectors designed for finding gold: Garrett AT Gold, Fisher Gold Bug, the Tesoro Lobo SuperTRAQ and XP DEUS. For more units that are made to find gold, read our buyers guide article called Best Metal Detectors for Gold Prospecting.

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Gold Nugget Hunting with a Metal Detector