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Saturday, 15 June 2013


Pretty Valley near Glen Innes is a place well known for its sapphires, zircons and quartz crystals. It isn’t known for alluvial gold, however, though I’ve always been aware that minute colours of gold could be found by panning.

A few years ago Sue and I were out there with one of our regular Wednesday Baptist Church fossicking trips. As usual, I was digging and sieving the wash and Sue was picking through the concentrates. 

When I returned to the picking table with another pair of sieves for her to go through, she pointed out something unusual she had just found in the bottom sieve. “Is this gold?” was her question. Well, yes, it was – and here it is – the only piece of gold we have ever found at Pretty Valley. It was just big enough not to go through the bottom sieve, and as for weight, less than a gram, I guess. That's an Australian 5 cent coin on the right for size comparison.

I’ve often been asked where gold can be found around Glen Innes. Apart from this small nugget, the only two places where I’ve ever panned were in the Mann River at the Pinkett Road crossing and in the Sara River at Kookabookra. 

There is a useful document you can download from DIGS titled “Gold Mining Around Glen Innes” by JP Belshaw and M Kerr (1950). The report number is GS 2009/0914. A DIGS search using “Glen Innes” as location and “gold” as a keyword will give you other leads (not the deep variety, though some were mined around Shannon Vale near the Mann River.)

Why not check out my You Tube channel here .

1 comment:

  1. During Minerama 2012, a guy was panning & had some specs in his pan so gold can be found but not as viable as sapphires. Was good to see that it could be found tho.