Are you tired of working your butt off and coming home empty-handed? Spending thousands of $ on equipment only to recover a few tiny specks of gold? Well don't tear up your prospecting club membership card just yet, the solution may be simpler than you think!

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Felix Paydirt. I have been prospecting in the Golden Heart of Alaska (Fairbanks) for more than 10 years. I can certainly attest that even when sitting on an abundant supply, some days offer up nothing but disappointment. I know the gold is there, so why am I not finding it? Sometimes the answer is right in front of our noses. Let me share with you a few useful tips that I occasionally have to remind myself of.

Gold mining equipment sustains a lot of wear and tear, and sometimes outright abuse. When it's worn out and we continue to push it, can we rightly expect it to perform up to standard? How do you perform under those conditions?

When I skip scheduled maintenance on a loader in order to meet a deadline, invariably I will end up spending twice that time on repairs while production comes to a complete halt. End result - no gold.

One of my clients recently complained about poor performance of a spiral panning machine. He insisted the material he was running was sub-standard. But it turned out that the circulating pump had malfunctioned, causing the drive tube to load up with gold - undetected! Nuggets, flakes, fines - it had all been accumulating in that tube unseen to the user. Quite a haul when he finally found it. Make sure your equipment is dialed in and functioning according to the manufacturer's instructions!

I have spoken to several prospectors who like to collect metal detectors but have not found much gold with them. You know the investment can be in the thousands. Modern technology is quite impressive. But those tools are only useful in the hands of a qualified user. Hunting for gold with a metal detector is an art. Anyone can certainly become an artist, but it ain't easy. If it was easy, gold would not be worth 1000/ounce. This brings me to my second tip.....

I don't know how many times I've quit working an area that seemed to be drying up, moved to greener pastures and then discovered that the original spot still had plenty of great potential. Impatience is not our friend.

It happens on all scales. Prospectors will work a creek for a couple hours, get bored with the lack of color, pack up and go home. Meanwhile, another guy will stick it out and continue to work that creek. He might change his strategy, adjust his location (or his equipment). But it's his patient persistence that separates him from the crowd. He works hard and does not give up easily. You'll readily recognize him. He's the one with more gold in his vial at the end of the day.

Of course, stubborn persistence would not be the course of wisdom if the location is entirely unproductive. Thus, tip number 3.....

Who doesn't dream of making new gold discoveries on uncharted virgin ground? Is it possible? Absolutely, if you invest the time, do your homework and have the funds to do the testing. More often, though, we save time and money by locating proven deposits.

In large scale mining, we can research old (or recent) drill logs, geological surveys, production records, etc. In recreational mining, it's as simple as going where other prospectors go. Local and national clubs such as the GPAA are a valuable source of information. If other club members are recovering good color on a particular river with a 2" dredge, it stands to reason that you should be able to do the same, provided of course that you pay attention to tips #1 and #2.

One very popular way to maximize yield is to purchase gold concentrates from a proven mine. That's my specialty. I have claims in Alaska's hottest pay zone, the Fairbanks Mining District. I do the heavy work, process the ground to a rich concentrate and ship it off to you to recover the final product - gold. It's not just any gold, it's Felix Paydirt's Gourmet Gold.

Depending on circumstances, some buy my concentrates to supplement their mining activities. Others rely solely on my gold to satisfy their prospecting needs. Poor health, bad weather, location, lack of time - these are all good reasons to order my gold . It's also a great way to test new equipment or technique. Whatever your reasons, it's the fastest short-cut to a high yield pay streak.

There's only so much gold in the ground, and we've only got so much time on the ground. Let's make the best of both!


Note: Felix Paydirt is a year-round Alaskan resident. While his family
has been in the mining industry for more than 40 years, Felix began
offering his concentrates to prospectors in 1998. Over the past 10
years he continues to perfect his art and is respected worldwide as
the foremost provider of premium gold-bearing concentrates.

Your comments or questions are welcome at felixpaydirt@alaska.com

FREE SAMPLES are available at his website, click on http://felixpaydirt.com/