Chinese water torture gets the gold


By Janni

I’m blessed to live in the heart of Victoria’s Golden Triangle where a walk in any direction from my front door eventually nets me a bit of gold. There’s only one snag; coming to the delightful pastime of prospecting in my retirement years, and being female, I simply don’t have the muscles to slog away at big holes. So I mostly content myself with picking up all the little bits that other detector operators have missed.

My trusty GPX4500, combined with a Nugget Finder elliptical 12-inch mono coil, is perfect for the job and it makes for a fun day out. Teasing out shiny little nuggets from shale, prising an overlooked nugget from the crevice of a rock, or even running my detector over other cowboys’ unfilled holes (with surprisingly good results) is all prospector heaven for me. While it may not lead to riches, after 11 months of honing my skills I’m generally able to come home from my weekly excursion with three or four nuggets, albeit very small ones. I’m well satisfied if the tally comes to a gram and topping the 2-gram mark is a bonus.

But then there are those times when the sweet, almost inaudible sound of what promises to be another gorgeous little piece of gold almost fills me with dread. Digging makes it louder, and louder, and with a sinking feeling I realize I’m not going to get it out without some serious labour. Sometimes I admit to looking for any excuse to wimp out, especially if the ‘Big Hole’ challenge comes near the end of my day.

The full article can be found in the May 2010 issue of Gold Gem and Treasure. Subscribe now.

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