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Common Mistakes of Rookie Prospectors

November 22, 2016

If you are new to the world of gold panning and prospecting, chances are that you’re excited and ready to get out there and start your search for gold. You’ve got your supplies and you’ve done the research on where the best places to go. But there are some things you might not know yet that can negatively impact your search. Here some of the most common mistakes made by rookies.

You Didn’t Season Your Pan

One of the most important tools of a gold panner is their gold pan. If you’ve bought a brand-new pan, it most likely still has its sheen from the manufacturing process. This sheen causes water to pool on top of it rather than move across it. Make the surface of your pan rough with some gravel to ensure that it is at its most efficient.

You Didn’t Dig Far Enough

Gold is a heavy material, and for this reason it sinks deep. If you only dig up the soft dirt, you’re going to be very unlikely to come across any paydirt. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t find much, if any, in this material. Keep digging until you hit the bedrock. As a result of rocks breaking down over up to hundreds of years, this is where gold concentrates are likely to have sunk.

You Didn’t Dig Test Holes

If you’re working with heavier equipment, such a sluice box, make sure that you dig a few test holes before you set up shop. You can use your pan to sift through a few locations, taking note of which locations are producing bits of gold concentrates. Taking the time to do this before you set up shop can save you from wasting time on areas where nothing is found, only to have to pick up and move to another location that may or may not have any gold. Instead, you can spend your whole day being productive.

You Buy the Big Stuff Too Soon

If you’ve just gotten started with gold panning and prospecting, you’re probably really excited. And you’re probably ready to throw down your wallet to invest in the latest and greatest machinery. Don’t jump the gun. Take your time and start small. Get acquainted with the archaic ways of doing things, and at the same time learn your state’s laws. Some states might not allow you to use certain equipment. Joining a club can help you to learn the ropes.

Gold Concentrates

You Don’t Respect Nature

Panning, sluicing, or dredging can have a negative effect on the environment. When you dig into the dirt, you can risk harming the quality of the water, which can affect the life that lives within – fish, vegetation and other wildlife that rely on the water source – as silt washes back into the water as you separate out minerals. When you go out to pan for gold, be respectful of nature. Dig in active streams. And when you’re done, return the rocks to their original places, as insects often live under these rocks and provide fish with food. A little respect can go a long way in making sure that the water’s ecosystem remains alive and well.

Going out and searching for gold can be a fun activity. But if you’re not quite ready to hit the streams, buy a bag of Eureka Joe’s paydirt and gift pack. You’re guaranteed to find gold in every bag. You can have all the fun without the mess!


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