At one time I owned a large block of patented gold properties on Grasshopper Creek. I was placer mining and also looking for lode opportunities.
Sure enough I stumbled upon a Limonite ledge that the old-timers had missed. On a skarn type of deposit that this was, the gold bearing ledge could turn anywhere out in the limestone. For several weeks I was hot on the trail going very slow and the geology was showing that a good chance of a pod laying underneath the limestone cap and sure enough I found it.
Some of this stuff went a hundred of ounces to the ton. Gold prices were very low but I still managed to make a profit that year.
This is what some of the original miners back in the 1860's were finding every day. Just to be able to experience the hunt and discovering a real hard rock vein was pretty neet!!
I was a pretty young fellow then, but boy did I find some chunks of hard rock gold. You can see in my pan that we were getting some great cleanups. I donated some of this gold to Montana tech and it is on display at the mineral museum.
~ Rob Towner