The slightly noteworthy saga of Jimoutside.....
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  1. #1
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting

    The slightly noteworthy saga of Jimoutside.....

    I don't know how far this will go, or how often I will have anything to tell here. It could end up being more human interest (or disinterest) than anything else. I'll try to keep coming back to gold, and prospecting. Or else you'll all (all y'all, for the southerners) will get very bored and move on.

    I'm 41 years old, and have a wife and 7 kids, barely making it financially, but we don't need to discuss that in depth. Suffice it to say that I can't spend a lot of money on my new hobby--gold prospecting.

    In fact, it could be argued that I wasn't wise to spend what I've already spent in the last three days, on something with such dubious returns. But hey, I could have a hobby with even more dubious returns, and higher expenses--like golf, horseback riding, or skydiving.

    Being a guy still in possession of my proverbial man-card, I do have a few tools lying around. I have some of the standard mechanic's and carpenter's tools, as well as garden tools. Of the three, the garden tools probably get the most use, because I actually do garden. Which reminds me, I need to dig some potatoes tomorrow, to sell to the restaurant. Tomorrow? Well, I mean, today. Later. When I wake up. because I'm a nocturnal animal--I work and do my best thinking and quiet time (like this right here) at night. Then I sleep by day. Weird, I know. Not sure if it's sustainable.

    By the time I'm done, I may conclude I should have just stuck to potatoes and not bothered with gold prospecting.

    Regardless, I somehow accidentally started watching prospecting videos on You-Tube sporadically, a few years back. Maybe I've even seen some of "you guys" (that's the New England in me, coming out) on there. Those prospecting videos looked like so much fun. Then I learned that South Carolina, where I live, actually has some gold in it. Unlike where I grew up in Maine, where gold was not a well-known phenomenon.

    So I probably shouldn't admit it, but I started getting a burning sensation in the back of my head, that I ought to go check out the creek near I live. Now--I live in a rural area, and I am also aware of the laws about trespassing and permission. Not knowing the people who owned the land on both sides of the creek, and not wanting to advertise to anyone what I was about, I thought I would just do a little test-panning surreptitiously--but not really on anyone's property. But where could I go? Well, it may have been against the law, technically, but I think it's a bit of a gray area--I went down below the bridge. So technically I was in the right of way, right? but no one could see me (but God, of course). Now maybe it's against the law to pan for gold under a bridge in the public right of way, I'm not sure. I figured I wasn't going to make a habit of it. Just wanted to scratch the itch and see if there was any gold. If I found any, I could go to the trouble to find some property owners along the creek, and get permission to pan on their property.

    Well, what I know was against the law, was borrowing my wife's stainless steel kitchen bowl. She still doesn't know about that yet.... I may have to confess that to her and get it off my chest. So I put the bowl, a trowel, and a few other toys I thought could be useful, in my packpack and sneaked nonchalantly down the road--waited until there were no cars nearby, and went down under the bridge.

    I found a wood piling under there, that had been cut off. Possibly part of an earlier bridge that had been there, or something. So I got some gravel from downstream of the piling and panned it. After four pans or so, I deduced that not only was there no gold, there was scarcely any black sand. I tried a couple other spots, but nothing, of course, so I packed back up and sloshed back to the house. Maybe my wife wondered how I got my jeans so wet. She and the kids were gone that day...she probably thought it was sweat from working in the garden. I hung them up to dry in the bathroom. Then I had to go to bed, because it was the middle of the day, and high time for me to be sleeping.

    So, feeling a little guilty for sneaking around under the public bridge, I decided I probably better not do that anymore. Better keep it on the level. So I contacted a couple friends I know who actually have streams in the area. Both of them said I could come and pan, but of course both of them wanted to try it with me. Because of course, gold. And fun. And it is their land, after all.

    So...tentatively, I'm supposed to go panning with one friend Saturday. Don't know when I'll be able to meet up with the second friend--he has a very busy schedule and is out of state right now.

    And the family and I are going to be taking a road trip next week, going up to New York state, across to Indiana, and down to Western Kentucky, and back home. We will be seeing a bunch of friends and relatives. Maybe, just maybe, I'll get a chance to pan with the kids in New York, and almost certainly in Kentucky. But as you may know, neither of those places particularly places high for placers.

    What do I want out of prospecting? I guess I mostly want to have fun, find a little gold sometimes. But my gold bucket list is to try to pan (legally) for gold in ever state, or as many as I can, before I die, and maybe in as many foreign countries as possible. I would love to go back to Australia. When I was there, 21 years ago, I wasn't interested in gold. I'm sure if I had been, somebody could have hooked me up with an opportunity. I just didn't seek it.

    Oh, those supplies I bought in the last 3 days? Came to a total of $23.17. I tell myself, I can't spend any more on it until I find that much gold. Roughly half a gram. Wonder if I'll stick to that rule You might want to place bets. LOL.

    All for now--the sun will rise soon, and I must go to bed.

    Jim

  2. #2
    us
    Dec 2012
    Concrete, WA
    Nokta FoRs Gold, a Gold Cube, 2 Keene Sluices and Lord only knows how many pans....not to mention a load of other gear my wife still doesn't know about!
    3,503
    6046 times
    Prospecting
    That's a fine start for a journal, Jim.

    BTW, what did ya get for $23.17?
    Jimoutside likes this.
    Mike (aka Dizz)

    "If you love wealth better than liberty, the tranquillity of servitude better than the animating contest
    of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsel nor your arms. Crouch down and lick
    the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you
    were our countrymen." ~~ Samuel Adams, 1776

    Dizzy's Super-Simple, Universal Rule of Forum Conduct: Don't be an ass.

  3. #3
    us
    May 2014
    AZ
    Beach High Banker, Sweep Jig, Whippet Dry Washer, Lobo ST, 1/2 width 2 tray Gold Cube, numerous pans, rocker box, and home made fluid bed and stream sluices.
    2,075
    2988 times
    Prospecting
    By this and your other thread it sounds like you have the basics. Master your panning skills and you are most of the way there. Sluices multiply the amount of material you can process (the more material you run the more gold you are likely to get). They are easy to build and you probably have scrap material laying around to build one/them with. For many, prospecting is a fun family adventure and the kids can be of much help too. Besides that, what kid doesn't like to play in water and mud?

    Good luck and welcome to the forum.
    Last edited by arizau; Jul 18, 2019 at 12:15 PM.
    Jimoutside and 63bkpkr like this.
    If it can't be grown, it must be mined!

  4. #4
    us
    USMC 0331 Forever

    Nov 2018
    The Motor City
    84
    135 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting
    Good luck dude, it looks like you have the skills to figure out how to make something good happen!
    Jimoutside likes this.

  5. #5
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Thanks! I guess we'll see....

  6. #6
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Quote Originally Posted by DizzyDigger View Post
    That's a fine start for a journal, Jim.

    BTW, what did ya get for $23.17?
    I'll try to detail it, maybe photograph it, later if I get a chance.
    DizzyDigger likes this.

  7. #7
    us
    George

    Jun 2019
    Ak,Tn
    Minelab, Fisher
    259
    502 times
    Prospecting
    You can multiply your chances by spending a little time in your library and checking up on mining in your State..
    1637 and Jimoutside like this.

  8. #8
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Ok, Hello again! First of all, here's what I dug up today:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    See, I wasn't kidding about the spuds. Here is 10 lbs. of potatoes in the bucket. The purple ones are Adirondack Blues, if you were wondering. The red ones I think are Adirondack Red, but I can't remember. These are heading to a local restaurant. It's a small shipment, but I'm excited about it. Over the next month or so, I should be able to harvest all the rest of my potato crop and sell it. My income should be only about 3 digits overall, but it's possible I'll make more money off my potatoes this year than I'll ever discover in gold.....but hey, you never know!

    I thought I would assemble my gold tools for you to see, since somebody asked. This is not quite all of them--some duplicates are omitted, etc.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    From the hammer on to the right, are things I already had on hand. Hammer, cold chisel, wire brush, cat's paw. The other objects to the left of the hammer, are things I've purchased this week, included in the $23.17. Admittedly it is RATHER amateurish. I'm already thinking I should have just bought snuffer bottles instead of the bulb baster and baby nose bulb. They will probably be my next purchase.
    DizzyDigger likes this.

  9. #9
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Here's a breakdown of what I bought:

    Item # Category Date Cost Notes Source
    Trowel 1 Tools 7/17/2019 $1.06 Z Dollar Tree
    Classifier, small mesh kitchen 1 Tools 7/17/2019 $1.06 Z Dollar Tree
    Classifier, wire basket decorative 2 Tools 7/17/2019 $2.12 Z Dollar Tree
    Snuffer, kitchen baster 1 Tools 7/17/2019 $1.06 Z Dollar Tree
    Storage boxes, small rectangular 2 Tools 7/17/2019 $1.06 Z Dollar Tree
    Snuffer, baby aspirator 1 Tools 7/18/2019 $2.09 Z Walmart
    Jet Dry (GV Dish Rinse) 1 Supplies 7/18/2019 $2.83 Z Walmart
    Snuffer, kitchen baster 1 Tools 7/18/2019 $2.09 Z Walmart
    Digging tool, garden hand claw 1 Tools 7/18/2019 $1.00 Z Walmart
    Pans, 8" prospecting, blue 2 Tools 7/16/2019 $8.80 Z Martin Prospecting

    For a total of $23.17
    Last edited by Jimoutside; Jul 19, 2019 at 03:29 AM. Reason: Straighten up the columns

  10. #10
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Sorry, that was supposed to be a table, but it didn't come out in straight columns.

  11. #11
    us
    Dec 2012
    Concrete, WA
    Nokta FoRs Gold, a Gold Cube, 2 Keene Sluices and Lord only knows how many pans....not to mention a load of other gear my wife still doesn't know about!
    3,503
    6046 times
    Prospecting
    Looks to me like you've got everything you need, save a snuffer
    bottle, and even that can be made.

    I don't see anything amateurish there at all. Many people have
    found decent amounts of gold using a lot less.
    Jimoutside and Duckwalk like this.
    Mike (aka Dizz)

    "If you love wealth better than liberty, the tranquillity of servitude better than the animating contest
    of freedom, go home from us in peace. We ask not your counsel nor your arms. Crouch down and lick
    the hands which feed you. May your chains set lightly upon you, and may posterity forget that you
    were our countrymen." ~~ Samuel Adams, 1776

    Dizzy's Super-Simple, Universal Rule of Forum Conduct: Don't be an ass.

  12. #12
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Thanks, Dizzy, that's encouraging!

    I just got back from an extremely dismal night of Uber driving. Believe me, alluvial is petering out in the Uber/Lyft driving business around here. When I began driving 16 months ago, it was far more lucrative. Tonight, I got a measly $47. Friday nights are supposed to be gravy nights. Anymore, not so much. I used to be disappointed if I got less than $125 on a Friday night. This is worse than last Friday night, which was $67. I am going to have to find myself a real job. Believe me, I have no allusions of prospecting making me any money.

    Tomorrow, Lord willing, and depending on how much the creek doth rise (it's raining now), my friend D and I will head out to check on at least one of his streams--hopefully two. One I'm not real expectant of, but the other could have some promise. Won't know til we try it. Could use some prayer, if y'all are the praying type. (I mean, not so much for finding gold, although that would be nice, but maybe for finding a better job!).

    Yesterday was my wife and my anniversary, so we dropped the kiddos off at friends and had supper together, and did a little shopping, mainly for a certain offspring's birthday which is rapidly approaching. Real romantic, I know. But we enjoyed being together, and so on. The thing I'm kicking myself for is this. When we left, I forgot to turn off the sprinkler, which was watering the potato patch. When we got back, I also forgot to shut it off, though I had remembered while we were gone. Then I left immediately to go to do my Uber/Lyft driving, and forgot and left it on. I just shut it off a few minutes ago. I think it was on for at least 9 hrs. Which is a solid 8 hrs more than I wanted. And it's raining now, too! Yeah. Maybe I should pan for gold in my garden.

  13. #13
    Charter Member

    Jun 2015
    9,352
    43952 times
    Underwater B.B. stacking
    Congratulations on the anniversary We just had our 47th on the 18th and also like you, have a son's birthday in just a couple days.
    Jimoutside likes this.

  14. #14
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    Congrats, Simon! Sounds like you detected a real gem when you found your wife.
    Simon1 likes this.

  15. #15
    us
    Distractable Specialist

    Jul 2019
    South Carolina
    60
    52 times
    Prospecting
    I'm sure anybody coming back to this thread wants to know what happened today. (Saturday, that is). Well, I don't have much time to tell it, because I need to get a few hours sleep before going to church in the morning. Then I'll be filling in working 2nd shift at my security guard job this afternoon--not sure I'll be up to Uber driving when I get off at 11PM or not, probably I'll be dead tired and just go home. I just got home from a night that was slightly better than last Saturday, but still a far cry from what I need to get-- $94.

    So I took a couple of kids from my collection, and went gold prospecting today. First I tried my friend D's first creek, which I will refer to as creek # 1. Tried it fairly extensively with zero gold found. Honestly, I didn't expect any there.

    By the time we got to Creek #2, which is in a more remote (and promising) area, daylight was rapidly waning. Therefore I didn't manage to do much panning there, but I chose what I thought would be a good spot, and loaded up a 5 gallon bucket with sediment from there. I scraped it off and around and out from under some good size rocks in the stream. I will try to pan it out at home Monday or Tuesday, real carefully, and check it.

    Now--I'm thinking--a dangerous pass time, I know--that if I recreate a slurry in the bucket at home, do the hokey pokey and shake the bucket all about, I ought to be able to scoop out the upper slurry and only pan the bottom two inches or so of the bucket, RIGHT?

 

 
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