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Vermont Prospecting

Posted by on March 1, 2012

Since we’ll be holding Little Dig III in Vermont this June, I found some possible locations for gold. If anyone has had any luck in these areas let me know. We will be camping at Mountain View Campground in Morrisville on the Lamoille River.

Lamoille County Vermont

The most promising areas to prospect in Lamoille County are: Gold Brook, Little River and West Branch of Waterbury River near Stowe, Rattling Brook near Belvidere, the First Branch of Lamoille River near Cambridge, the Gihon and North Branch Rivers near Eden, the Lamoille River near Johnson and Sterling Brook near Morristown.

 

24 Responses to Vermont Prospecting

  1. jim Renauld

    Hi Jim,
    Anissa and I will be going to the June Little Did III in VT; can’t wait! have you been to this campground before? where do you recommend that we get a tent site if available? also do I need a permit to use a sluice? and just one more question; do you think that we’ll be digging near campground or driving to the dig sites along the river? I looked at the river on google Earth and it looks great. Thanks in advance for your reply :-)
    Jim Renauld

  2. jim Renauld

    I just saw your other link for permits in VT, scratch that question, thanks

  3. Francois Ledoux

    A few years back I had gone gold panning on the Smokeshire branch of the Williams river in Gassetts, Vermont (Smokeshire Road off Rt 103) which over the years has yielded a fair amount of GOLD. Be sure to ask permission from the abutting land owners who are quite friendly providing you leave the area clean. I had met a young couple who’s morning find was about 2.5 oz. Unfortunately they had been shredding the moss from stream bank boldders which is quite illegal. Strange how they dissapeared rather quickly when they saw me watching them. LOL :<)

  4. Larry Slicer

    I saw your post about the young couple shredding the moss.
    What is shredding the moss

    • jacobpan

      Moss acts like a gold trap, but shredding it off boulders that are along the riverbank is not a good practice and usually illegal. You might find some moss in the woods next to a stream that also holds gold. But again, be very conscious of any harm you may do to the riverbank.

  5. Debbie

    Is there anymore info on the Big Dig 111? Can anyone join in?

    • jacobpan

      It’s BIG DIG IV this July. And it’s open to anyone that wants to come up and do some prospecting. If you plan to camp, be sure to contact Twin River Campground soon, it’s filling up quick!

  6. Francois Ledoux

    Thanks Jacobpan, please excuse my french, I mispelled “boulders”. I had read an article in the Vermont Life magazine a few years back about an old timer named Harris who as a boy used to pan the Williams River with his grandfather Sunday afternoons after farm chores were done. With a flat bar and sledge hammer they used to open cracks in the (shale) bedrock, scoop out the mud and pan it. Harris claimed that they used to take out 3 to 4 ounces an afternoon. However, GOLD back then was about $20.00 an ounce. Big money! However, I’ve yet to find flake there. Seems to me there was a gold mine nearby. (private land) I pan and dredge placer gold in souther Quebec gold belt between Magog and Thetford Mines, but it is very very fine flour gold.
    Several years back a young girl tending her father’s cows found a goose egg sized gold nugget. But that land is now all owned by Bowmore Corp.

    • jacobpan

      Wow, 3-4 oz in an afternoon!!! Those were the days I guess. I’ll have to look into the Williams River area. Heading up to VT soon so that might be worth checking out, thanks!

      • Francois Ledoux

        Hello again! If you pan the Smokeshire, a bit of advice. Leaving Rte 103 on to Smokeshire Road you’ll cross five small bridges, these bridges are planks cross wise with boards lenth wise for the wheels. (unless ofcourse they may have rebuilt the road since I was last there) I understand the gold pickings are fairly good beyond that point. You would get a fairly good idea of the topographical layout of the river on Google Earth. Good Luck
        Francois

      • Francois Ledoux

        Smokeshire Road is up Rte 103 half way between Chester,VT and Proctorville.on the left going North…….GPS co-ordinates for Smokeshire Road are:
        43.20.43.60 N by 72.37.24.74 West

      • Francois Ledoux

        Just an after thought, if you type in “Gassetts, Vermont” on Mapquest you’ll get a much better satelite image of the Williams River and Smokeshire Road just north of Gassetts

  7. Linda

    Yea permits in vt to run a sluice box is unreal so I go to Nh. I’ve paned a lot in the last six years.And I have several sluice boxes,and a gold wheel.Good luck its hit or miss.

  8. peter maxon

    Thanks for putting this stuff on line! Newbe and with the info I can go out Prospecting and at least prospect where ymg has been found. Can anyone come on your trips next year? thanks Peter

    • jacobpan

      Peter, thanks for the comment. Our digs are open to anyone. We get a lot of prospectors at all levels of experience. If you are on Facebook be sure to join the group “NORTHEASTERN GOLD PROSPECTORS”. It’s a great bunch of people who are very helpful and a blast to dig with!

  9. debra galley

    Always wanted to try this, what would a beginner like me have to do to get started ?

    • jacobpan

      Debra, the best way to get into prospecting is to find someone that has some experience and go up to the river with them. It’s all about technique, especially panning. There is a great group on Facebook called Northeast Gold Prospectors. There are many members and are willing to help out newbies. You can also find lot of great videos on YouTube on panning and sluicing. If you are interested in taking a class, we offer them also.

  10. joel

    the gold in the news paper where Harris claimed that they used to take out 3 to 4 ounces an afternoon. is true BUT that is before 3 hurricanes that coverd it in many many feet of overlay. he said it would take heavy equip to get to it now.i have been there dug a 5ft hole found a few microscopic specs of gold

  11. jeff

    I am a vermont native and have been prospecting for two years now. Let me tell you that there is plenty of Green Mountain glitter if you know where to look. A good spot for newbies to start is Buffalo Brook, just behind Echo Lake in Plymouth. This is home to the rook’s (fox’s) Gold Mine; site of the largest gold rush in Vermont history. For the more experienced prospector I would recommend Broad Brook, a rather small brook that winds it’s way through both Bridgewater and Plymouth. I have had luck finding roughly a half gram/hr. This is also a great place for the gem hound as it is packed with garnets… Where my sweet spot is I shall never tell lol but its there i promise. Make sure to use google earth to plan your trip ahead of time as a vast majority of the brook is baren (look for sharp banks and drop offs in water velocity). Any questions feel free to email me @ [email protected]
    Also let me know when this year’s dig (2014) is as I would like to join.

  12. brian

    can you please tell me how i can tell if gold is real or fake? an does gold mix with granite like it does with quartz?
    thank you Brian.

    • jacobpan

      Brian, gold does not reflect light, it is not shiny. It is just a pure yellowish color (usually) and will not break it you try to crush it. An it can be mixed with just about anything, but usually quartz. Here is some info from the web:

      “Gold is usually found in what is called “intrusive” veins. When there is a crack in the earth, molten material such as quartz rises into and filling the cracks then solidifying. This quartz material brings up the gold (also in solution) which is embedded inside the quartz. In many places the quartz “intruded” granite. Many times the gold can concentrate in what is called the “contact zone” where the quartz touches the granite and the gold lies in between. Gold has also been found in slate, such as the largest ever found came out of a 800 pound slab of slate in Austrailia. The shiny stuff you often see in granite is usually mica, a type of silica. You can find pyrite in granite, but its more rare to.” (thanks to Goldpanner5 from Yahoo Answers for the info)

  13. brian

    how do you test gold to make sure its not pyrite? for i have what looks like gold in granite

  14. jacobpan

    Is the material in question smooth and angular, as opposed to round or course? Pyrite usually forms in cubes and us usually not yellow but a brassy color.

    4 WAYS TO DISTINGUISH FOOL’S GOLD FROM REAL GOLD

    SHINE: When you’re viewing fool’s gold with the natural eye, it will glisten, not shine. The edges will look sharp and it may separate in layers. Gold shines at any angle, not just when the “light is right”.
    HARDNESS: Get a piece of copper and try to scratch the copper with the gold. If it scratches it’s pyrite. Pyrite is harder than copper. If you do have real gold, be careful with this test. You wouldn’t want to damage a beautiful gold nugget!
    RESIDUE: Gold will leave a pure yellow residue while pyrite will leave a greenish-black powdery residue when rubbed against white porcelain.
    EDGES: Pyrite has sharp edges and gold has rounder edges. The shape of fools’s gold is a lot more angular.

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