Rain, rain, rain! Rain is the dominant theme in this stage of our winter prospecting in WA.
On arrival in Sandstone, we booked into the caravan park for one night, as we had to collect a parcel from the P.O. and Post Office hours in Sandstone are 8 am to 10 am, 3 days per week. Then it started to rain………………so we extended our stay in the park for another 2 nights. As is normal in the outback, all gravel roads were closed, with heavy penalties for driving and damaging them. By the third day, we could venture on some of the local tracks, but it was still too wet to set up a bush camp. After an additional night in the Park (which is very well set up, with comfortable amenities) we were offered the chance to change our booking to weekly, with very little additional cost. After 9 days, we moved on, having enjoyed the comforts of civilisation, but with very little gold.
A few days at a number of small goldfields, with little of significance to report, was followed by a great time in an area which we had never visited before. We set up our camp, then headed out to explore. Jack noticed a small shaft on the edge of the track, with quartz and ironstone scattered across the gentle slope down to a creek, and assessed that this was likely ground for nuggets. In the first hour Jill heard a very faint, deep sound, and dug feverishly until she reached bedrock. It was time to call for digging assistance! Armed with chisels and a heavy hammer, Jack chipped away at the rock for a few centimetres until a 90 gram specimen surfaced, and shone in the sunlight for the first time since creation.
A specific gravity test indicated it should contain approximately 37 grams of gold. It has spent some time in acid since that day, and the quartz is slowly being eaten away, but we still don’t have an accurate weight – hopefully, it will be very close to the predicted gold content.
Keep watching for our next blog.
This goldfield had more surprises for Jack and Jill