Concentrating White Channel Pay Dirt
Below the dirt is a layer of rocks called a “White Channel”. In Vermont, gold is associated with white quartz in contemporary finds, as well as noted in historic finds. During a recent gold find in Buffalo Brook, the rocks that were separated were primarily quartz. Most of quartz rocks were small pieces crushed down to one inch or less. The gold flakes found with the quartz were tiny, but plentiful. As the material was sieved down to a 50 mesh, more gold became visible.
To quicken the process, the screened material was further separated by using a spiral concentrator back in the “Gold Room”. The concentrator spins on an angle moving the gold up into the center of the processor and flows into a catch container. The rocks and dirt spill over the bottom edge into a waste container. One of the most important parts of the process is to maintain a consistent water flow and spiral speed. Using an electric power supply to run the processor is more consistent than battery power. Battery power slowly reduces the pump and spiral speed. Since most of the gold found in Vermont is very small, consistency is most important.