at a complete loss and need guidance


Feb 7, 2021
Primary Interest:
All Treasure Hunting
Let me start by saying i know absolutely nothing about geology, prosoecting, or anything passed skipping rocks on a lake. Long story short, i stopped to see a childhood friend who i hadn't seen in years the other day. He took me for a walk in the woods to show me something. After i was sworn to secrecy. There was what looked to be a boulder sitting on the ground in the middle of the woods. {upstate SC). I didn't notice until later what appeared to be dredges nearby. But he says there is gold in this masive rock. He had taken a hammer to it and I think he may be on to something. The rock is about chest high and 6ft in the other 2 directions. I didn't think to take a pic but kept a few of the pieces he broke of in hopes of finding someone who knows that can tell me what it is and what we should do going forward. The rock is on his land so that isn't an issue. Just ran across this site a few minutes ago and would appreciate any advice or instructions the community may have. I do not know any terminology and completely ignorant in all other regards. I'm uploading pics of the pieces i have and next time I'm out there I'll upload the rock. Thanks


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I'm not an expert, but it looks like gold to me. I believe that may be quartz in the center and from what I've heard gold is in quartz veins often. What to do about it isn't your call being it's on somebody else's property, but I'll digress and let others throw their 2 cents in on this. Welcome to TNET.

I'm also not a geologist, but I do see what I believe is some
mica and pyrite in the specimens you show. This doesn't mean
that gold is not also present, as it could be locked up in the

Best way to find out if there is gold in those stones is to
crush them to near powder, and carefully pan out the material.

Well my friend asked me if would find out if there was gold. If so and it is worth pursuing handle whatever is necessary to make a rock become a check for a percentage. I guess wrap a piece up in a towel and apply hammer to make powder? YouTube to learn how to pan? Thank you for the quick responses

You can make a manual crusher pretty cheaply. Start with a 3" diameter black iron pipe, threaded on one end. Screw on a cap. Then a longer piece of 2" diameter pipe with a cap. Drop the rock(s) in the 3" pipe, and smash them with the 2". Wear safety glasses in case pieces should fly out. A metal detector would be handy to have too. Yes, learning to pan is critical. Watch videos and practice, practice, practice.

A preliminary color test will quickly help you identify if what you are thinking is gold is gold. One fact about gold is that it has a distinctive gold color no matter the lighting....all other elements and minerals lose the hint of gold coloring in shaded lighting. That said gold may be present but not visible.

Good luck.

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Forgive me for not having the vocabulary to articulate this correctly but after applying a 4lb hammer what i noticed was the "gold" appeared to be covering a black material. Almost like it was plated. When it was powdered i made a laughable attempt to pan. In the bathtub no less. Only light was from a small window and the blinds were closed. I managed to tweezer out some flakes and chunks that shined or glistened in the not very bright bathroom. I just bought a battery rotary hammer drill yesterday. Should i continue this same process or try to get a bigger sample and find someone local who knows what they are doing. I haven't felt this incompetent in quite a while. Again, i can't thank y'all enough for the help that's been given. Y'all are a pretty good bunch of humans

Kinda looks like Iron Pyrite to me...IDing rocks from a pic is always tricky

Chip out a piece of the "gold". Place it on a piece of steel and smack it with a hammer. If it is gold it will flatten like a lead sinker. If it is pyrite it will shatter
Good luck

Always best to learn by foundering around yourself n learning something. Watch more videos and pan. Gold will sit on the bottom of the pan and not swish around as easy as other minerals. From what I hear the black stuff -black iron pyrite and shiny fools gold mica can accompany gold in metamorphic rocks so don't be discouraged. If you do find gold it won't break up it'll bend so if you can mash it to pieces it isn't gold. Thanks for joining us lol.

You can use a magnet to pull out any iron ores like iron pyrite. With that said, gold often is inside the pyrite. A professional assayer would probably be needed to know for sure. What state did it come from? That makes a big deal of difference.

If your "friend" asks you for money; equipment; investment; even gas money, walk away. :occasion14::skullflag:

Well you failed your friend by violating your secrecy pact.

Looks like a pyrite of some sort. Doesn’t jump out at me as looking like gold.

Yellow and “metallic” looking doesn’t mean gold.

Sounds like pyrite or mica and looks like it also, I don't see gold at all.

“I didn't notice until later what appeared to be dredges nearby.”

I’d advise checking to see who would own any valuable minerals that might be located in these woods?
That fact that you later noticed dredges nearby (in the middle of the woods) indicates other people are mining in that you or your friend have any rights there?

How do you know what gold dredges look like if you know nothing about gold mining?
Why doesn’t your friend create an account and ask his own questions here?

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Pour nitric acid on it. Vinegar works too.

Gold will not change color.

And since you were sworn to secrecy.............I won't tell anybody about your pyrite.

Think about it, maybe that boulder has gold in it but how much, only way know is to crush it totally, sadly ounce the boulder is gone and that is it. What you are attempting to do is Lode mining on a micro scale, not practical unless you have hundreds to thousands of these boulders to mine. Possible that the boulder sits on an ancient river bed, test the ground and you may find great gold. good luck.

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