Gold chips in the creek

Does anybody get little chips of gold? I’ve been getting quite a bit of it recently.
About the size of a match head & rough like the texture of cracked cast iron.
Is it freshly broken off a quartz boulder or seam?

Quite possibly gold. I know a creek in gold reef country where the gold is angular with shattered corners where the quartz has broken out, sharp edges and completely unworn.

Tararua, does this gold crumble when you tap it with a hammer on a hard surface?

My chips are usually made of potato. Can I ask which brand of chips you buy?

Pictures of your gold or it didn’t happen…

Seriously though if its rough gold it usually indicates its come from a local reef. Although there are some types of rough gold that actually grow in things like alluvial terraces under the right conditions. There is some interesting research being done on nugget genesis by the University of Otago and the theories as to its origins

Nope. Just flattens out like lead.

Sounds like gold if it does that. It is far more unusual to find gold that is all angular than worn and smooth and consequently the unworn samples are far scarcer and far more interesting to perve at under a microscope.
In fact it was when I was perving at unworn gold under a stereo microscope that I discovered microspherules.

A few pics would be handy ! …?

Hey Tararua, judging by the name you’re lower North Island, if I’m not mistaken.
If you are let me know if you ever want an extra set of hands, always keen for a day out.

Sorry mate, I’m west coast. But if you are down this way at anytime, sing out.

That’s if it is gold & note pyrite which would just shatter & crumble. :slight_smile:

The gold buyer’s happy with it, so its gotta be.
Finding where it comes from is what interests me. I figure its got to be on top or bits wouldn’t get smashed off it. Needle in a haystack though.

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Ah ha the good ole West Coast. Seems to me that gold is not far from the source hence its rough appearance. That"s not uncommon on the coast in some creeks. Esp if you are in the headwaters of the creek. And there is lots of bedrock and spurs jutting into the creek. The gold is contained within quartz reefs which run through what geologically is called “The Greenland Group” that group is comprised of argillite and greywacke. rock structures. It is likely that in the area you are dredging small quartz leaders containing gold intersect the creek. The part of the leader in the main creek bed has eroded away, releasing its gold. Whereas the leader still lives on the banks of the creek and is most likely covered by overburden and not visible. .The other scenario is that somewhere on the slopes above the creek a gold bearing quartz reef is outcropping, and some of it has eroded away and the gold has slowly migrated down into the creek bed. Having traveled not far in the creek bed, the gold maintains its somewhat coarse or rough nature. I And if that gold has not traveled a great distance from source it could be contained within the upper layers of the alluvial wash. I have struck this in several west coast creeks, one being the headwaters of the Blackwater Creek which flows down from Waiuta, Grey Valley. The other a creek here in the Buller. Both creeks contained well worn gold.(Well Traveled) and what I call crackly gold. (Not traveled far). Both those creeks have quartz leaders crossing them.

Cheers Trev aka “The Hatter”


Hi Trev, Yes I have seen some nice bits of gold come out from those headwater creeks up Waiuta. Not just the Blackwater either. Hard country though. Keep well my friend.

JW :cowboy_hat_face:

I worked in the NZFS up that way…once. Stationed at Totara Flat. Great country. I knew a spot on Granville Terrace…its still there.


Awesome specimen gold there taraua. How many grams is that?

Just love those specimens. Somehow I would much prefer a quartz/gold specimen than just a straight nugget. They have character.

No idea. Its only match head size. Its more a reply to your “photo or it didn’t happen”.
I get a fair bit of it so figure the source is close. I just wonder how far gold has to travel to get flattened to flakes. This does not look like its been smashed through a gorge in a flood.
But who knows?

Looks like its come not far from its source as its pretty rough

Definitely gold. Be it very small like you say If that background is a piece of A4 paper. Certainly zoomed up on. Now where did you say you found it? :laughing:

JW :cowboy_hat_face: