Yep, I pretty much have free rein there. I've panned a couple of times with a cheap off brand plastic pan and a cone shaped stainless steel batea. I haven't found anything, but I'm pretty inexperienced with panning. I've spent lots of time researching, but don't have much experience. My lower back also starts acting up after leaning over a few slow/unskilled panning attempts. The creek is also fairly skinny, maybe 2-3ft across and runs straight without any inner bends to target. There's a few spots I tried to remove gravels to get to bedrock, but I only hit the top of buried boulders.
Western NC. I live near Hendersonville but the 10ac property is in Burnsville. I'm definitely flirting with the idea of heading out west eventually. I actually have family in Arizona. Why can't you imagine nugget detecting out east? Is it the combination of hot ground, thick organic layers, and lower quantity of nuggets available?
Thanks for the lead. I'm definitely a proponent of doing homework. I've been researching prospecting for years to decide a method of attack to invest in. Detectors seem more versatile than dredges. More portable and can be used many places dredges can't. I'm also looking into scuba gear for underwater sniping. I can do that in the national forests, just can't sluice or dredge.
I thought because of the high mineralization, hot rocks, and deep layer of humus and uneven terrain I would need the depth of a PI. I was also worried that the equinox might be a little complicated for an amateur like me, but maybe it would be worth it to spend more time learning on such a machine. The 10 acre site probably has some coins/relics, but I'm not expecting much. It is on top of a mountain at the end of a cul de sac next to logging land. I doubt there was much traffic up there in the old days except maybe the alleged gold mine further down the mountain. But to be fair, I shouldn't expect many nuggets either if I haven't found any yet.
I'm not expecting to find much on this property. But it's the only place relatively close that I have full access to for now, so I was thinking it would be a good spot to cut my teeth. There's actually a small public area at Ray Mine that allows detecting. But I assume it has been picked clean since there are no public alternatives in the area that I know of. There have been some pretty large (12+ pound) nuggets found a couple hours away, so you never know. I might stumble onto a nice vein. I assume a highly skilled user with a low end detector would be more successful than an unskilled user with a high end detector, so I want to get plenty of practice before going on long road trips to camp out at better locations. I have some leads on other private properties nearby which I might be able to use. Just want to learn how to use the detector first before bugging the owners for permission.