Category: Gold

Gold- John Had Another Good Day Mining!

By Charles Watson John sat on his porch and packed his pipe with the last bit of tobacco. His dog came over and nuzzled his nose under his arm and John gave him a big hug. John gazed over the valley below that held his mining claim. It was a warm autumn evening and light was dimming fast. Shadows were growing longer. Morning temperatures were getting colder-the mining season was coming to a close. John nuzzled his dog back and thought about the gold he got that day. He’d hit a good pay-streak that the old guys missed. A seam, a layer, sedimentary horizon that just sparkled with gold. The...

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Gold- Claim Jumping!!

By Charles Watson Blam! Blam! Blam! The tree branch above the stream exploded sending a shower of bark on top of a man bent over the water’s edge. The man dropped his gold pan and began to run, briefly glancing over his shoulder only to see the person leveling his gun again. Blam! Blam! Ting! A 44 caliber bullet whizzed by the man and hit the rock outcrop in front of him,causing a wisp of rock dust to rise and rock fragments to be thrown into the man’s path. “Get off my claim,” shouted the man with the gun. “Darn claim jumper! I’ll get ya’ next time!” This was not only Hollywood’s depiction...

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Tertiary Placer Gold

By Charles Watson It had been raining for two weeks straight. The streams were full and the mud was thick and sticky. The saloon doors quickly swung open and the man wearing a long leather coat dripping of rainwater turned and used the mud chucker to scrape the mud from his boots. He slowly sauntered up to the bar, his hat shading his eyes, never making eye contact with anyone. As he pulled open his coat the bartender reached for his shotgun. The man dug into his pocket and pulled out a quite full and obviously heavy leather pouch, and slammed it on the bar. “Whiskey!” he shouted. “All...

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2017 – A Fantastic Mining Season

They are already talking about it. Some were out during the epic floods this past winter watching the rivers, the streams and even the small creeks, dreaming, imagining, wondering what it will look like when it is all over. Intense high stream flows, not just once or twice, but several times and often for sustained periods. Bank-to-bank floods, scouring the bedrock, ripping out old stream-side vegetation, and eroding into virgin riverbanks like it has not done in decades. Muddy, bubbling, frothing turbulent waters, a vicious act of nature that causes jaw-dropping havoc and destruction,...

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Gold Mining 2017

They are already talking about it. The murmer is growing and the consensus is building. People are tuning up their machines, gathering supplies, and scoping out new spots. This is going to be one of the best mining seasons in decades! Several things are working in favor of the miner, as it appears the winter storms have brought an end to the three-year long drought, a change in government regulations is on the horizon, the price of fuel and supplies remain low, and gold remains around $1,200 per ounce. All that points to a good year for gold mining. The miners can feel it. That tug on their...

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Autumn Gold

  It’s Autumn and leaves are turning that golden color again. The mountain valleys are coming alive with gold, yellow and orange–enough to cause pause and remember back to the old days when, along with the turning of the leaves, there were also sounds of picks and shovels and men were looking for that other golden color–the precious metal kind. But wait! Those times are not from yesteryear! They’re from just yesterday! People are once again flocking to the mountains in search of that elusive golden metal. With the price of gold hovering around $1,300-per-ounce, it makes perfect sense...

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The Right to Mine

The Right to Mine By Charles Watson Chief Geologist, Advanced Geologic There’s considerable confusion about mining laws today, and even a question if people are still allowed to prospect for gold. The confusion is paramount in California and Oregon, yet is multi-state prolific across the western states. Many question come to mind for the average weekend warrior and miner. What can they do? Where can they go? When can they do it? How much will it cost? Do they need permits? Understandingly, mining tends to cause surface disturbance and with many concerns about environmental impacts, there is...

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20-20 Gold Vision

The dog barked and splashed in the water next to the 49er as he was cleaning out his sluicebox. He could see some choice nuggets in the riffles and as he reached in to pick up a good-sized chunk, his dog bumped his arm sending it back into the stream. The miner was about to curse his best friend when he spotted something glistening under the water next to his fallen gold nugget. His eyes were not the best at his ripe old age of 38 but there was no mistaking this observation. He carefully reached into the water, first picking up his fallen nugget, then grabbing onto the bigger piece and...

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Coin Pays Reverence to Westwood’s History

Coin Pays Reverence to Westwood’s History You don’t need to live in Westwood to know it’s a special place. From it’s creation it seems the town has been something of awe. The Red River Lumber and Fruit Grower’s Supply Company, prior industries of Westwood, seem to be all woven into the history and the hard work it was built by, that is engrained into the core of the community. With a history like that, it’s no wonder people are proud of this town’s heritage. Tom Ferguson has designed a silver coin that pays homage to the town during that special time in it’s history. One side of the...

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Before You Pan For Gold

Since the dawn of time men have been driven to search the Earth for gold. Combing the hillsides and creek beds for this precious yellow metal is a fun and rewarding pastime for kids of all ages that are willing to do the work. Step one in prospecting is research. Before you even purchase a gold pan there are important things you need to know. First and foremost, find out where it is legal to pan for gold in your area. Even on public lands, many areas have established claims where the mineral rights are solely owned by individuals. Just because you are in a National Forest or on land managed...

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Westwood Museum +1.530.256.2233,

The Westwood Museum, located in the little mountain community of Westwood, contains the artifacts of a once thriving logging town that was founded in 1913 by the Walker Family. During the time the town was owned by the Walker family, the nation experienced the Industrial Revolution, two World Wars and significant societal changes. The Red River Mill was the largest operating mill in North America. The town had a state-of-the-art hospital, a theater and opera house, the largest sawdust pile in the world and an indoor mall, said to be the first indoor mall in the United States. The people who...

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The Almond Nugget

It rained hard last night. You heard the pounding on the roof and the gushing sounds of runoff cascading off the roof till the wee hours of the morning. You stretched, got out of bed, found your slippers, and shuffled down the hallway to the kitchen in search of the coffee pot. A few minutes later, the murmur of “Ah…” could be heard from the kitchen table and you embraced the warm cup in your hands. A bright blue sky was overhead and the sun began to rise over the hill behind the house. Water droplets on the tree branches glistened in the sun’s rays and wisps of steam rose into the air, only...

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