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Last Post 24 Mar 2019 04:08 PM by  Brandon Cooper
Geology
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TIM LEIBEL
Buzzard
Buzzard
Posts:598



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29 May 2015 06:30 AM

    I have not been doing this long; but I have learned that knowing some basic geology would help.  I have been trying to find a class at one of the local colleges and can not find one to take. Go figure, only 20 colleges within 30 miles of me.  So does anyone know of a good source of videos or maybe books to learn the basic geology for reading a terrain in the field.  Or telling one stone from another.  I had this way back in 4th grade but have forgotten a lot and never did learn how to tell if I have a ruby or a garnet in my hand.

    Don McElyea
    Miner
    Miner
    Posts:131



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    29 May 2015 06:59 AM
    I don't know if this will help or not but it has helped me.  If you join a Chapter there is unlimited knowledge to be gained from the members at their Chapter outings and meetings.  I have joined a Chapter in New Mexico (I am from Oklahoma) and have learned a lot.  There are also some good youtube videos and videos on the Learn portion of this site.
    Paul Louly
    Dredger
    Dredger
    Posts:81



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    29 May 2015 11:08 AM
    Good ideas Don.

    Another thing you may want to try is getting in touch with Chris Ralph who is an associate editor at ICMJ. He is a Geology expert and just from watching episode 12 of Gold Trails you can see he knows what he's talking about. Not sure of his availability to what you need however, but if you do get a hold of him he may be able to at least point you in the right direction.

    Gold luck!
    Greg Miller
    Sluicer
    Sluicer
    Posts:63



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    29 May 2015 02:30 PM
    To add to Paul's comment, Chris Ralph's book "Fists Full of Gold" is something you won't want to put down when it comes to mining and geology. It's a great resource for both the beginner and the advanced.

    http://www.amazon.com/Fis...-Ralph/dp/0984269207

    You won't regret the purchase.
    KENNETH SWINEFORD
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    29 May 2015 02:30 PM
    Check your State DCNR web site, most states have a geology department, and the link can be found there. Most will post periodicals with all sorts of knowledge about your States minerals. Pennsylvania for example has produced a geology magazine since the 60's and each publication is on line. Also go to the mineral resources page on the USGS web site, they produce geospatial maps of bedrock geology, old mine workings, what was mined, and if available the mine name, along with a host of geological studies, river and stream information, and the info is free. A lot of larger Colleges/Universities have a Mineral Science museum, that usually free and open to the public.
    Benjamin Crain
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    29 May 2015 03:15 PM
    I would go to a used book store and buy a college Geology book and start reading it, but at the same time you need field time so you need to have rocks and samples for comparison to the book. You can also meet with your local BLM Geologist and pick their brain as well as joining a Chapter and talking with the people that have been working the earth longer than most geologists.

    My wife and myself found a giant green crystal that nobody can identify, so we are meeting with the local BLM Geologist next Tuesday, hopefully he can identify it but if not a portion will be sent to a lab for final determination. The BLM is a wealth of information and can be utilized by anybody, take advantage of the free services they provide.
    TIM LEIBEL
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:598



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    29 May 2015 06:33 PM
    Thanks for the help. I ordered the book. I am a member of a chapter. What I am looking to do is understand the science. I also prospect in the southeast, and would like to know what different gems look like live. Pictures on the net don't seem to accurate.
    Benjamin Crain
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    30 May 2015 09:03 AM
    I think your post has convinced me to sign up for a Geology Class myself since we are new to Colorado. We just left Texas a few months ago and the only Geology there is clay, clay, and a lot of red dirt. Here we have found we go looking for gold but find gem stones in the process by accident, so I too could use a refresher course as well. But soon the San Juan Mountains will lose their snow and open up an entire new area for us to go exploring. At least here I know a Geology Class will teach me a bit more about the surrounding mountains.

    Good luck with your prospecting, I hope you find what you are looking for.
    robert walker
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    30 May 2015 03:10 PM
    I think your post has convinced me to sign up for a Geology Class myself


    When I was in college, I ran across one girl who was a geology major... I thought she was crazy... Who wants to look at rocks? Rocks are not fun,
    rocks are boring....

    How wrong I was...

    Now, I really really wish I was a geologist. Those BORING rocks are a lot more interesting now. Those boring old rocks tell you where
    the shiny stuff is.
    PAUL BLACK
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    30 May 2015 06:42 PM
    Tim. Echoing what everyone said about Chris Ralph. Thumbs up. If you're looking for some college level general courses check out www.thegreatcourses.com.
    I have learned tons from the 3 geo-courses I purchased. If you go that way wait for a sale. They offer up to 80% off sales periodically. And buying the downloads are a cheaper option than the DVDs. Naturally, none of it will be specifically aimed at gold prospecting the Southeast US.
    TIM LEIBEL
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:598



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    30 May 2015 06:46 PM
    I just wanted to learn to look at the local terrain and see what may be there. I know from learning with fellow prospectors that Quartz is good. But I would like to learn some more. Be able to anywhere and read the terrain to determine what is there to work with and maybe where to start.
    robert walker
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    30 May 2015 10:40 PM
    Hey Tim... Google Google Google.. The area I'm working in, there are TONS of reports on the geology.. And apparently most of them
    are free online.. Done by the university or what not, some are pretty old, some are in the time of color television. Lots of different search
    terms are needed...

    My Dad has been online looking for stuff for over six months... Different search terms, and he still keeps coming up with stuff neither of us had seen. Just
    today he found a 200+ page free online book, dealing with the geology of the area we are trying to figure out.

    If you are looking for placer gold in a stream, geology isn't going to help you all too much...

    In my situation, I am AT the source... So rocks are important... I read the reports and my eyes glaze over, then I have another
    beer. My Dad digs into it more than I do.. I can go to our claim, its up the road, he is back on the east coast. I'm the boots, he's the
    brains. Quartz Quartz Quartz.... Not always the case... Depends on where you are at... Depends what happened, 100 million, 50 million,
    2 million years ago..

    My claim is a 1/2 of a 1/4 of a 1/4 of a section away from a GPAA claim. It has a MAJOR vein running through it... Those reports online show the
    veins... And you can actually SEE the veins on a satellite image... And all the mines follow the veins... There was a major eruption there 70 million years
    ago or so, and a low heat "slow flow" eruption about 30 million years ago... What does that mean? I don't know, still working on that...

    I've also got gold at my house, and what is going on there is totally different than on my claim... The recent mountains, the ones that brought the
    gold are VERY young.. 12-15 million years old.. Historically, 90% lode, 10% placer... The gold hasn't come out of the rocks yet.. The gold at my
    house is in far different rocks than at my claim.. And they are not all that far apart, 50 miles as the crow flies.

    I barely even know what I'm doing, but I can give you a little advice... Research Research Research Research Research.... Concentrate on a single area, because
    they are all going to be different... If you want just general knowledge that will enable you to walk up to any hill or mountain and point to the gold... I don't know what
    to tell you, I'm not sure that is possible, from everything I've researched so far, every place is different.

    Here's an example of a report, one of many many many that I've read... If you are in an historic gold area, you should be able to find similar stuff...
    Read them, and then file them away, read some more stuff(learn more) and then go back and read them again, rinse repeat... As you learn more, new
    things will pop out at you in the reports.

    The link thing most likely won't work, this has to be the worst site I've ever encountered as far as linking and attaching things go... "Mineral deposit (your mining district)" is a
    good search to start with..

    [URL="https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CB4QFjAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fnmgs.nmt.edu%2Fpublications%2Fguidebooks%2Fdownloads%2F63%2F63_p0559_p0568.pdf&ei=oKhlVZe0BcnFsAWsqIKADw&usg=AFQjCNG438YuYXAf-O3IjKcsXO7EM8awZg&sig2=k8f-UynHHS9w1rBMkS2dEg&bvm=bv.93990622,d.b2w"]https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CB4QFjAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fnmgs.nmt.edu%2Fpublications%2Fguidebooks%2Fdownloads%2F63%2F63_p0559_p0568.pdf&ei=oKhlVZe0BcnFsAWsqIKADw&usg=AFQjCNG438YuYXAf-O3IjKcsXO7EM8awZg&sig2=k8f-UynHHS9w1rBMkS2dEg&bvm=bv.93990622,d.b2w[/URL]
    Benjamin Crain
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    31 May 2015 04:21 PM
    Robert is correct. If you look in the GPAA book and look at the claims I can tell you that the Northern and Southern Delores Claim in Colorado are totally different, and then you go a few miles further South or up stream and people are highbanking and drywashing on a claim 24hrs a day, and that is most likely the source of gold deposits for the Northern Delores Claims. I believe but am not certain it is because of Placer deposits that contain gold are the upper deposit and not the lower, and as you travel further South that upper Placer deposit comes almost down to the river. Most of the large mine operations in the canyon are drilled directly into the upper Placer or shelf which confirms my theory is probably correct.
    Jennifer Braley
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:18



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    02 Jun 2015 03:23 PM

     

    Ben and Robert: Your guys’ comments me laugh!

    Ben, taking Geology classes are SO useful more than you can imagine. Ive been prospecting for years and I really thought I knew it all when it came to finding the "shiny stuff", as Robert said, but I was wrong. When I started taking Geology classes last year, they really helped me learn the land so much better than before. Even though some of the things I learned seemed minor things about streams or mountains I was missing, they ended up making a big difference when it came to finding the gold. The classes I took also helped me with gems, rocks and minerals as well when it came to identifying them.  So I would definitely take some classes at your local community college.  Hopefully I convinced you even more to start Geology class’s haha.

    Robert, I can’t tell you how many people come up to me and ask what my major is and when I say Geology, they say same thing you do, “Why? So you sit and look at rocks all day and that’s fun to you”??? hahaha. And to be honest yes I love it! I wouldn’t go for any other major. Funny things is you learn so much more in Geology classes rather than just rocks (even though that was my favorite part in the class). You learn about earthquakes, streams and river beds, fossil fuels, volcanoes, plate tectonics, different types of topographic maps, etc. As I said with Ben, just go take a semester in a basic Geology 101 class, you’d be surprised how much you’ll learn. 

    William Hall
    Lost Dutchman
    Lost Dutchman
    Posts:496



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    02 Jun 2015 04:43 PM

    Here's an old school idea

     

    I'm absolutely sure the local library would have more books to read than you could shake your pan at  

    Geology, gems, rock formations, some (a lot) of history the earths surface.

     

    Just an idea.....that has maybe passed.

     

     

        Bill

    So Much River So Little Time...Get Out There
    Benjamin Crain
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    02 Jun 2015 05:20 PM
    Jennifer,

    I have had a class in Geology some 20+ years ago, but like Mathematics and Physics it changes on a regular basis, and it greatly changes upon region. I wanted to go to the Butte Montana School of Mining Engineering when I was young but had to choose a different route due to the situation at the time. Geology in Texas, where we just left, is comprised of oil and some fossil knowledge, that and shale and oil sands formations. It all depends on what school you attend and where you are, not to mention time frame. Now that I am back in the Rockies I need a refresher, and I will freely admit it.

    The author of this post to begin with expressed his frustration of being surrounded by colleges but not being able to find a Geology class, and when that is the case you have to take what you can get. I should remind you that many explorers in all science fields had no background education and took the time to learn their field for themselves and we are still learning to this day on their footsteps. I pursued a career in Nuclear Medicine, but my passion has always been Geology.

    Each day we spend working the field and learning from others we build upon our knowledge, it doesn't always require a College Course though they can help if you have a really good Professor that is truly interested in their field and not just teaching from a text book. That being said there are people more knowledgeable in the Chapter that I belong to than any Geologist I have ever met.

    I hope Geology has not become like Medicine where Doctors type in the symptoms of the patient to their I-Phone app and then give a diagnosis and send people home.
    Jennifer Braley
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:18



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    02 Jun 2015 06:11 PM

    Ben, 

    I absolutely loved what you said here, "I should remind you that many explorers in all science fields had no background education and took the time to learn their field for themselves and we are still learning to this day on their footsteps." And here, "Each day we spend working the field and learning from others we build upon our knowledge, it doesn't always require a College Course though they can help if you have a really good Professor that is truly interested in their field and not just teaching from a text book. "

    I wish people would see that the answers are all around us and it can be up to you to learn it without any college courses. Unfortunately, in my generation, everything requires a degree and college hours to back everything up in order to get a job. Its truly sad. I hope myself that Geology doesn't become like Medicine where you do all that app crap for help. I wish people would see the way you do. Everything doesn't need to come from a text book, even though I did enjoy my Geology classes. Most of the stuff that was in our textbook was from scientists that derived their own information based on their visuals and their own self teaching and brainstorming. Personally, if it was up to me I wouldn't even be going to school for Geology because you can honestly learn it yourself. I completely agree that you do learn so much through GPAA chapters and the others around you. Geology is my passion too. As I said though, in order to get a job in the field you need a degree 

    P.S Jealous you live in the Rockies now. My goal is to live in Colorado eventually 

    Benjamin Crain
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:



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    02 Jun 2015 07:17 PM
    Come to Colorado where we live now and stand on both sides of the Black Canyon and look at the earth, the mountains on the North and South side are composed of a completely different Geology, it was truly a jaw dropping experience comparing one side to the other for the first time, and then you add in the Elk Mountains and the San Juan Mountains, not to mention Northern Colorado in the high mountains, I have become to think Colorado is the most mineral rich state in North America, it just hasn't been tapped yet. Here we have deposits that run so high you can't get water to them, and shafts so deep it cost more to pump the water out than to retrieve the minerals.

    Do what we did, we found a way to Colorado and love it here, it took us a few years but we managed a way to make it happen. Consider this also, I don't know where you live but since moving here from Dallas our bills have almost been cut in half which makes up for the lower wages earned on the Western Slope, that and Grand Junction is just a wonderful place to live, especially if you are coming from a big city. Montrose might even be a better location for you, you are even closer to the mountains than in Grand Junction.

    Don't be jealous, join us. It took us 4 years to get here, but all good things come in time.
    TIM LEIBEL
    Buzzard
    Buzzard
    Posts:598



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    02 Jun 2015 07:21 PM
    The amount of interest in the subject is heartwarming. FYI all my major in college was nuclear physics with a minor in computer science. I just to understand the science of things. Books are great, for me I learn better visually and hands on. Unfortunately the local junior colleges do not offer any Geology courses. I am learning to pick all your brains though. 😀
    Jennifer Braley
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:18



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    02 Jun 2015 09:39 PM

    Ben, I come to Colorado as often as I can. My boyfriend lives there so I get the opportunity to do a lot when I’m there ( He’s a Geologist). I was just in Colorado last week actually. I have to agree with you on Colorado’s Geological structure. Truly fascinating and breath taking. I think I was as shocked as you were when I went there for the first time last year. I will keep in mind of Black Canyon. Never been there yet, but there’s still tons and tons of places and GPAA claims I’d love to see and visit. Oh and if you haven’t already, go visit Garden of the Gods. You won’t regret it.

    Well I know I will make it there eventually. This upcoming fall semester I might go to the college my boyfriend went to in southern Wyoming so I will be much closer to CO. I currently and unfortunately live 30 minutes west of Phoenix, Arizona. I could go to school here, but I just don’t like anything about it Arizona and would like to leave. So I am trying my best to join ya’ll as soon as I can! I would preferably like to live where there is tons of gold hehe

    Scott Leidenberger
    Highbanker
    Highbanker
    Posts:103



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    03 Jun 2015 06:48 PM
    Google Wheeler Geologic area . Check out the photos. Then fill out a change of address form. : )
    Brandon Cooper
    Greenhorn
    Greenhorn
    Posts:1



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    24 Mar 2019 04:08 PM
    For anyone that wishes to learn, below you will find a free opensource/interactive geology based textbook I used for my intro to geology class in college.

    Pretty neat and useful information. Albeit, it gets into geologic hazards and what not, but there is still a lot of useful information about learning rock formation and mineral identification which can give clues to where the gold can be found!

    Here is the link: http://opengeology.org/textbook/
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