Living The Dream

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Living The Dream

Post by Terry » Sun Mar 01, 2015 5:31 pm

As we have been talking about gold prospecting I have quickly written this while in the mood.
Some of this has no doubt already appeared in other yarns of mine.

LIVING THE DREAM – Starting out

I’ve always been that sort of bloke, quite reckless some would say,
Despite the risk most thought involved, I’d do it anyway.

The whispers had grown louder of big gold being found using metal detectors around the old goldfields. It didn’t take much tempting to get my interest zeroed in to the latest rumours that were floating around.
I soon decided I should visit the goldfields and have a look first hand, and find out what this was all about. But finding a mate was difficult as most wives put their foot down, no doubt thinking this was another one of my wild fantasies.
I managed to get a couple of blokes to do a weekender or two and found a couple of pieces of gold using very inferior detectors – it was enough to whet my appetite. Eventually I talked my brother-in-law John into giving it a go, (he was still single) but first we’d do a short trip to find out all we could about the best way to go about it.
While on that trip we ran into an Aboriginal woman who had specked a handful of good sized nuggets and she suggested if we wanted to find good gold we should go to the place where she had been born as it was a particularly rich gold area.
Back in Perth we managed to buy two of the latest detectors and did a bit of research about areas we hoped to visit. I already had some knowledge of a couple of places having had a go at traditional mining a couple of years before. It was planned we would do a two to three week trip to determine if it was possible to make a living out of it.

Then at last we bid farewell to the city (and in my case wife and Kids – I’d certainly struck gold with Valma) excited at the prospect of having a real go at what would turn out to be a life changing experience. I still recall the excitement of finding good payable gold on that trip, but also the peacefulness of the relaxing lifestyle that has never left me.

We started out at Penny Weight Point and picked up a few nuggets then moved onto Red Castle where I had a really good signal from something that appeared to be beneath a tangle of tree roots. With heart thumping I carefully dug away, then out popped a lovely clean 4 oz nugget, the first good sized nugget I had ever found. A little further on was another one of about ½ oz which was in the perfect shape of Western Australia and I was hooked.

We next travelled further north past Laverton up to Banya station (then abandoned), we didn’t have a clue where we where exactly all the tracks were overgrown with quite large trees growing in the middle of them. While driving on one of these tracks we emerged into an old mine site with lots of dry-blown heaps about and covered in metal rubbish. John Hopped out in the middle of all this with his detector beeping constantly at tin cans etc. but within minutes found a clean 2 oz nugget. We continued on a few klms where John while walking down an old track found a 5 oz nugget sticking out of the middle rut. I can still remember sitting around a campfire at night looking at our gold in almost disbelief.

We ended that two week trip with 22 ounces of gold and never look back after that.

I hastily add we made a reasonable living but no fortune, but as the saying goes, the experience -priceless

© T.E. Piggott

Neville Briggs
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Re: Living The Dream

Post by Neville Briggs » Sun Mar 01, 2015 5:58 pm

The only nuggets I ever found in the bush was kangaroo doo.

Amazing tale Terry. :)
" Prose is description, poetry is presence " Les Murray.

william williams

Re: Living The Dream

Post by william williams » Sun Mar 01, 2015 6:39 pm

Good hunting Terry and there is still more there they say,

bill w


Re: Living The Dream

Post by warooa » Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:28 pm

The last sentence says it all Terry. ;)

Cheers, Marty


Re: Living The Dream

Post by Heather » Sun Mar 01, 2015 8:24 pm

Once you take out the 10,000,000 flies, it does sound fun Terry. I remember going with the scouts gold detecting - we only found tin cans but we did have fun. I got to hold a gold nugget a couple of years ago and I recall thinking how shiny and beautiful it was and so heavy.

Heather :)

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Re: Living The Dream

Post by Terry » Sun Mar 01, 2015 8:31 pm

G/day Neville you were obviously using the wrong type of detector.

Yes there's still a bit out there Bill, finding it's the problem.

Money alone can't but that sort of experience Marty, especially as we were among the first to try that mode of prospecting.
And as many of the fields had been abandoned for about 50 years or more and the fact that we were probably likely to have been among the first to visit them since then, it was like stepping back in time. You sensed something about that era while there - well at least I did.

Cheers Terry

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Re: Living The Dream

Post by Terry » Sun Mar 01, 2015 11:30 pm

Heather the flies aren't too bad in the cooler months and depending where you are, those months can be so cold especially at night with heavy frost in the mornings, but fortunately by mid morning it's usually magic.
It seems that those who love that lifestyle enjoy the remoteness and are more than happy if they don't run into anyone out where they are. A trip to town (usually 100 klms plus) gives you a quick fix if you start craving a bit of contact, but returning to camp again is the best part.

Matt There's no doubt that blokes like me are more than a little selfish because it's always about doing the things we want to do, you can become almost driven in pursuit of your dreams I guess. It's fine while you're single as it only affects you, but once you have a family you really are stretching things a bit and you need a very understanding partner to first understand your need to do things and secondly to put up with it.
Most sane people weigh up the options and err on the side of caution, realizing that a good steady job has guaranteed rewards for yourself and your family at the end of it.
I've never thought that way, I remember rocking up to Coober Pedy in the sixties with just few Quid in my pocket. I figured If I waited until I had enough money I'd probably never get there. And that pretty well sums up the way I looked at things, especially in the early days

I guess it takes all types mate


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Re: Living The Dream

Post by alongtimegone » Mon Mar 02, 2015 9:33 am

Sounds like you've had your share of adventures Terry. Good on you for doing a few of the things most of us just fantasize about. Now get back in harness and write another lyric. Those are the real gold.

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Re: Living The Dream

Post by Terry » Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:53 am

Thanks Wazza

I have the start of an idea floating in and out of my mind at the moment.
I could see how easily you could become hooked on writing these.


Bob Pacey
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Re: Living The Dream

Post by Bob Pacey » Mon Mar 02, 2015 8:56 pm

Come over for a visit and find my glasses they are somewhere near the mulcher.

The purpose in life is to have fun.
After you grasp that everything else seems insignificant !!!

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