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Thread: Water at gold camp.... is there a way to test in the field

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  1. #1
    us
    Jan 2015
    San Francisco, Ca
    150
    153 times
    Prospecting

    Water at gold camp.... is there a way to test in the field

    I have permission to camp on patented land adjacent to my claim. About 150’ up the hill from camp, is a stope the mine. The stope, according to the owner, is 800’ deep, and full of water to within 6’ of the surface. This puts that water level about 30’ in elevation above camp.

    I’m thinking of setting up a siphon from this stope to bring water to camp for washing and other tasks requiring water. Not for drinking or cooking.

    The way my schedule works, I get to the mine for one long weekend a year. I’d love to get there 4-5 times a year. But that’s beside the point.

    Next trip, I’m going to bring a sample home for testing. But, is there a test I can do in the field to test for the suitability of the water to be used for my purposes? Sure I’ll bring ph strips, but what else? Would an an aquarium test kit be useful? What kind of test kit should I bring?

    Anyone have any idea what I might find in that water? In the stope hole, there’s sure to be organic material. There are striders in it but it is clear.

    Up the hill a bit more is a mine portal and about 50’ inside is a shaft filled with water to the same level as the stope outside, and that water looks just plain crystal clear. Ideally I’d pull the water from this “clean” source rather than the stope with probably dead critters and such.

    This mine is at the Far East end of the gold belt on the South Yuba and the rock is mainly serpentine.

  2. #2
    us
    Jul 2004
    Angels Camp,Ca.
    758
    715 times
    Thousands of houses in the California motherlode are within the serpentine belt..is it safe?...that's up to you...https://www.google.com/search?rlz=1C...99.76uVaspgrgk
    et1955 and davin like this.

  3. #3

    May 2005
    St. Louis, missouri
    5,802
    4393 times
    To bad you didn't grab a water sample while you were there since you only have a 1 X a year shot at it! Most mines have some type of chemicals in them ,as you seem to understand ! Good Luck and be safe !
    et1955 likes this.

  4. #4
    us
    Jan 2015
    San Francisco, Ca
    150
    153 times
    Prospecting
    Quote Originally Posted by russau View Post
    To bad you didn't grab a water sample while you were there since you only have a 1 X a year shot at it! Most mines have some type of chemicals in them ,as you seem to understand ! Good Luck and be safe !
    My whole idea about using water from the mine only dawned on me shortly after my last trip there. And I was wishing I had thought of it at the mine and grabbed a bottle. Here’s the water in the shaft inside the mine

    Click image for larger version. 

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  5. #5

    Aug 2015
    525
    1059 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Cap full of bleach per gallon will kill any bacteria. As far as heavy elements, not so much. Definitely need a lab to test that part.

  6. #6
    us
    Jan 2015
    San Francisco, Ca
    150
    153 times
    Prospecting
    I'm mainly worried about chemicals that would mean I should not be washing my skin with it. The striders seem to be surviving fine....

    Either way I'll probably set set something up to siphon water to run a highbanker, theres millions of gallons. I dont know what the replenishment rate is

  7. #7
    us
    Mine President, XPBC, GIH

    Dec 2013
    Arcata, California
    Fisher 1212-x Fisher Gold Bug 2 Whites 4900/SP3 Rocker boxes, Keene sluices, Bazooka sluice, 2.5", 4" lowbankers, highbankers. Witch Sticks.
    632
    713 times
    Prospecting
    Siphoning mine water to run a highbanker oh man I wonder what the greenies or the EPA would make of that.
    russau and BillA like this.

  8. #8
    us
    Jan 2019
    Maine
    442
    396 times
    Prospecting
    Quote Originally Posted by N-Lionberger View Post
    Siphoning mine water to run a highbanker oh man I wonder what the greenies or the EPA would make of that.
    Just tell the Greenies that it has a lot of silver in it, which is a natural disinfectant. They will research it, and finding out that it is true, be totally bewildered if it is too good to be true or not! (LOL)

    In cases like this, just remember; "It is just a guess unless you test".

  9. #9
    us
    Jan 2015
    San Francisco, Ca
    150
    153 times
    Prospecting
    Will the greenies give a crap if I produce my test results showing healing mineral water?

  10. #10
    us
    Jan 2016
    South of Gunnison, Gold Basin
    F2
    1,745
    1938 times
    Prospecting
    Theres critters living in it. It's probably safe to use for washing up or anything like that.

    Our old well was a hole like that and it was good for drinking. I'd pull a dead chipmunk or mouse out once in awhile and I'm sure there were many more at the bottom but it tasted good. We filled all our water jugs out of there for this last decade.

  11. #11
    us
    Apr 2015
    Oshkosh, WI
    941
    1343 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    If there's striders on it, it's probably not very acidic. You could try some PH strips on it. https://www.sciplus.com/blue-litmus-paper-32883-p

  12. #12
    us
    Dec 2016
    Colorado
    49
    53 times
    Prospecting
    I'd do a PH test. Some mine water is very acidic and will dry your skin out in a hurry. Some of the water at work will eat a black pipe fitting in less than a month.

 

 

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