Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

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Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 03, 2016 8:34 am

Hey Gold Adventurers...

Well, maybe Spring is FINALLY beginning to "spring" a little here in High Kolorado.  Lately, it's been a bit too cloudy, cool and definitely windy to get out and prospect, but yesterday was finally nice.  It started off at 14F and was clear, sunny.  Luckily, no wind to speak of.....and by 10:30 it was up to 38F, so I decided to make myself a sandwich and hit Cache Creek to see IF the dry gulch was workable... Wink

I arrived about 11AM and luckily not a soul in sight.  No wind, clear, sunny......awesome!  Decided to park at the Granite Cemetery, work in the creek below...

The 13ers & 14ers all have a nice layering of snow, so I snapped a few pics:

Mt. Oxford to the Southwest:



Quail Mountain, due West:



Mt. Elbert, the tallest 14er in Kolorado at 14,433 feet:



Mt. Massive to the North of Elbert:



So, I gathered up my equipment, made the short hike over the hill around the cemetery to Cache Creek.  Nice to see most the snow has melted off and that the water level was high enough to run my Le Trap sluice easily.  The water was low, clear and ice cold!

Here's my Le Trap and look up the creek.  Had about 6 or 7 small Brown trout holding in the pool just above me, and they weren't the least bit concerned, so someone PLZ tell BLM the poor, poor, poor little fishes are O.K.  Oh, all those "wintering Elk" the BLM wets their pants over?  Once again, not a one to be seen.  They come and go as they please, but you can't tell BLM that...



I took a short walk up the dry gulch to see what's been going on since I was there last Fall......surprisingly, some folks had been out in the recent past, ahead of me, diggin' in the gulch and sluicing below in the creek, as a lot more "dirt" had been removed from last year when things froze solid.  Lots of boot tracks in the wet soil, so way to go early birds!   Very Happy

Guess maybe they MIGHT have heard that BLM is trying once again to implement a new 2016 EA/Mgt Plan that will do a LOT of bad things:  Limit prospecting to just 1/2 the year, herd us all into the 25-acre placering area, limit equipment in the creek to a hand pan, implement OSHA safety digging standards & impose a new permit/fee system of $5 a day or $25 a now 1/2 season.  I am fighting BLM as best I can with Congressman Doug Lamborn's office and have filed a Protest/Stay and Appeal with the Dept.pf Interior Board of Land Appeals to TRY and slow if not stop BLM and "save" Cache Creek for us prospectors...  

Anyone interested in "saving" Cache Creek from BLM, please call, e-mail or write Senator Cory Gardner and Congressman Doug Lamborn's offices and pile on, tell them we prospectors need Cache Creek, need to stop BLM from eventually shutting us all down completely, and to NOT publish this new EA/Mgt Plan with all the new B.S. in it.  Thanks!   Smile

Anyways, I decided to start diggin' in the same spot I left last Fall......screened up a mostly full 2 1/2-gal pail of reddish/clayish mater right on top of the bedrock.  I did a sample pan and yep..........decent fine little color, so off to sluicing!

Sadly, I forgot my big rare earth magnet at home to help prescreen out as much of the magnetite as possible up in the gulch, so no surprise, after 2 pails my Le Trap sluice was black from front to back:



The day was awesome, probably warmed up to 45 degrees, sunny, no wind, several Red tailed Hawks flying overhead, screaming their screams.  Here's a view downstream:



So, at 12:15 PM I took a short break, enjoyed an egg salad sandwich in the shade and a bottle of ice cold water I had in the creek.  Nice to see juncos, chickadees, and other little birds all over, so active as well.

I did see a fellow prospector walk down the hill towards me carrying a metal detector and pick.  He crossed the creek above me a short distance, we waved at each other and said "Hi".  Looked like he had a White's MXT, like the 2 I have.  He hiked up over the ridge to the South and disappeared into the tree line.  Hope he found some gold.  I haven't yet at Cache Creek with a detector.

Here's my dig spot up in the dry gulch:





I don't normally like to take time to classify with a 1/2 inch screen, preferring to go for MAX material and just let the rocks tumble on thru my sluice, BUT having to carry buckets as far as I am I do screen out as much waste rock as I can to get max good dirt as possible each trip.

Well, I didn't go to Cache Creek for the whole day, just a couple hours to see IF I could successfully dig/sluice, which I can now, so after 10 mostly full 2 1/2-gal pails I called it quits, cleaned up and packed out back up the hill to the Jeep.  Man, I could sure tell I was a bit out of shape after sittin' around so much this winter, as I huffed and puffed up the hill, taking 4 little stops on the way to admire the views.   Wink

I was able to take one short video: https://youtu.be/Qszs-p2ggcg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qszs-p2ggcg&feature=youtu.be

I'll pan my cons out soon, see what I got.  I did see a few tiny flakes in my top 3 riffles, so I know I didn't get skunked...  I'll let "you all" know soon.  Fun, fun, fun.

Hopefully everyone will dust off their equipment, get back into the hills, find some gold, create a brand new 2016 memory!

Randy  C-17A    Smile


Last edited by Admin on Tue Apr 12, 2016 7:43 am; edited 2 times in total
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Re: Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

Post by russau on Sun Apr 03, 2016 5:26 pm

Randy I sure wish I had made my move to Colorado 7 years ago ! BUT now its just gonna be a dream I had when I was younger and healthy-er........

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Re: Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

Post by Chief05 on Sun Apr 03, 2016 5:27 pm

Sir:

You didn't mention taking your surveying equipment so could measure depth/width and survey mighty Cache Creek acquiring a baseline for the major silting issue that will suffocate those poor brownies and their eggs....Oh by the way did see one of those BO Toads that may have hopped 100s of miles to get to Cache Creek or maybe a Canadian Lynx that just possibly expanded their home range. Glad you could get out and have a great time, great pictures.....

Ron

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Re: Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

Post by Admin on Sun Apr 03, 2016 7:13 pm

Russ, Chief,

Ha.  Thanks for tagging along............looking a my Trip Report....

Nope.  Sorry...........forgot to measure the water, temp, creek level.  The fish were happy, me too...  Just never, ever, ever BLM.  

No toads, no lynx and no Elks.

So, I panned out my cons out and here's my reward:





I ended up with 5.1 grains or .33 grams of nice, flakey Cache Creek Colorado gold!  I'll take that! Now, that's really not too bad for only 10 mostly full 2/1 2-gal pails of dirt in about 2 hours!   Very Happy

So, that spot in the dry gulch is the "gift that keeps on giving"....   Wink

Can't wait to get back up there, wash some more "dirt", get a little more gold...

Randy  C-17A    Smile
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Re: Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

Post by gold girl on Sun Apr 03, 2016 9:33 pm

Those pictures look like postcards....its so clear and beautiful!! I'm glad you were able to make it back to Cache creek. I wish I could have been there with you! I yet looks like you made out quite well!! Great trip report

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Re: Colorado -- Sluicing Cache Creek -- 2 April 2016

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