When asking seasoned miners about this year’s so-called gold rush in Northern California, it can be a challenge to obtain trustworthy information.
“People who are smart don’t advertise what they’ve found,” said Bob Van Camp, better known as “Digger Bob.” “If you’re finding nuggets in an area, you don’t tell anyone about it; I’ve made that mistake before.”
After all, if you’re a professional miner looking to make your fortune, it’s the nuggets you’re after. Flakes and dust are milquetoast – and altogether worthless – compared to heavy chunks of the shiny yellow stuff.
Northern California was pelted with record rainfall this winter, and miners predicted that once all the water washed away, gold would be left in its wake. It appears that their predictions are panning out.
“Folks are finding more gold — ‘flood gold’ — than usual this year,” said Diana Clayton, president of the Shasta Miners & Prospectors Association, which owns seven claims throughout Northern California and boasts about 350 members.
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