Tag Archives: magnetometer

The Mountains are Calling..

“The mountains are calling, and I must go.” –   John Muir

Welcome to the start of the 2017 Alaska mining season!  To those of you just joining our story, we are a family of gold miners from Alaska.  For some reason that I will never understand, folks like to hear about our trials and tribulations while trying to dig our fortune out of the ground.  For those of you who have followed us in the past, thanks for tuning in again!

I understand what Muir was saying about the call of the mountains – I’ve been hearing it for some time, though the snow didn’t seem to be cooperating.  Thankfully though, Spring is finally upon us and its time to start setting up.  First piece of equipment – the recently repaired backhoe- is on site.

While there is still snow in places like the creek – there are some signs of Spring – we even found a patch of violets.

The camp looks pretty lonely right now, looks like we shouldn’t have left our supply tent up (we lovingly call it the taj mahal) I guess we had a big snow load here this winter!

The dog couldn’t resist a wallowing in the settling pond.  We’re not the only ones excited to be back at the mine!

Both our new and old dig sites are not quite thawed out, but that is ok, as we still have a bit of staging to do.  You may remember that last year we had a magnetometer survey done to help us find that “good pay”  and we are really looking forward to following up on one of the “hot spots” from the survey and seeing what kind of values are there.  This spring I can tell you why there is most likely good gold there – the water is just pouring out there, draining from up on the canyon rim.  You can literally hear the water trickling down.


More to come – just thought I’d let you all know the news.  IT’S MINING SEASON!!!!

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Let’s get some SCIENCE up in here!

Here’s hoping all of you had a great Independence Day or Canada Day!

Big stuff happening at the mine.  I may have mentioned that we were looking into getting a magnetometer survey done.  We just finished it up and are looking forward to the results.

Just in case you don’t know, basically a magnetometer survey will show us where there are concentrations of black sand, and where there’s black sand, there is usually…..GOLD.

We have 160 acres of claims, we realized that we could spend the next 30 years digging test holes and never find the best stuff.  Also because of the terrain and the Forest Service regulations we can’t have a drilling program.  The magnetometer was our best bet.  Now, to find someone to do it!

Turned out that most companies were not really interested in a small job like ours, they would either not answer me at all or set the price so high that it was unrealistic.  Then, I ran across an article about Pioneer Exploration out of Canada being the first outfit to do a Magnetometer Survey with a Drone system that they designed themselves.  I figured a place like that wouldn’t give me the time of day; but their founder, Micheal Burns, wrote me right back, and on a Sunday no-less. They gave us a reasonable quote, and we set a date.

It was decided that the best way to do the survey was on foot with a backpack magnetometer.

Michael Burns getting geared up

Michael Burns getting geared up












These guys walked a 20 meter spaced grid over the entire 160 acres through some of the of the most unforgiving terrain imaginable.   They got stung by hornets, had to repel across the creek, walked straight up and down in some places, and had no bear protection whatsoever.  They were supposed to take seven days to do it. They did it in four.

As you can tell, we are thrilled to have found these guys!  I can’t wait to see the data they come up with.



Looking for the paystreak

Backhoe has been repaired, we’re back in action again.  At the digsite we ran into some nasty, sticky, black material.  We ran it through the trommel and we’re disappointed with the gold returns, so we’re back searching for the streak we were on at the end of last season.

nasty black stuff

nasty black stuff




Its frustrating to dig a little, pan it out, dig some more, pan it out, but its part of mining I guess.

We have been running into these silver metallic nuggets, not sure what to make of them, I’m thinking of having them tested to make sure its not something valuable.








Ok, so that’s depressing, how about some good news?  I’ve been searching for a company willing to do a magnetometer survey for us, and I think I have finally hit paydirt!  We’ve decided that we could spend a lifetime digging holes in this place and never find the big strike.  It’s time to be a little more scientific.  I’ll keep you posted, its pretty exciting.

In the meantime, back to digging holes…