Well today we got skunked, as in shut-out, struck out... got no gold.
Anyone who thinks it's easy to just go up there in the mountains where all the gold is, and actually get gold, has another think coming. It's not easy.
We went up with our friend "Red" of Gold N Sand fame to test a couple of new spots. While I won't disclose where we were, the pic is from earlier scouting trips when the water was much to high to access.
Both spots look great and undoubtedly have gold there, but this one we have been waiting since spring to get back in there because it has a beautiful looking ancient alluvial gravel deposit along the opposite shoreline on an inside bend in the stream. The gravel deposits appear to be quite old and are very hard packed and difficult to chip away much less dig. The color of the material was that orange rust color dirt that usually means good gold, it also had streaks of very black dense sand along it.
After crossing a smaller tributary stream and then climbing a steep incline tying a rope off to a handy tree, then repelling down a snow covered steep incline to the ledge in the pic above. I slowly chipped out 4 buckets of nothing from there by tying another smaller rope to the handle on the bucket (with a lid on it) and throwing it out in the river for Ryan and Red to "reel" in and test. I pulled one more bucket from behind a large boulder at the edge of the stream in the same spot before retreating back to the car to warm up and get some lunch at a nearby eatery.
With our tails tucked, we decided to make a last minute quick stop at the confluence of the S Platte River and Clear Creek on the way home and ran another 4 buckets through the Gold Cube and ... eureka - gold!
When we take guests out on gold adventures up in the mountains, they always find gold... good gold, sometimes nuggets from our proven spots. However, finding new proven spots is never easy I guess, but darnit I sure don't like to get skunked!