Caribbean Gold Paydirt® is located deep in the Puerto Rican jungle. Hours from the capital city of San Juan, our gold mining operation is not your typical mining operation. Having been prospecting previously in Alaska, Canada and California with no luck, we kept our mining dreams alive by trying something very different. In a last ditch effort, we spent years studying and searching for lost Spanish gold mines. The research alone was very time consuming and labor intensive.
Most people think of the California gold rush as being the most famous and one of the first. What people fail to realize is that the Spanish Conquistadors had the largest gold rush in history. The entire reason that the Spanish settled what is known as the "new world" was for their lust for gold. This Spanish gold rush spanned the Caribbean and Central and South America, including Puerto Rico for over a century.
With this in mind, we took our mining dreams to the jungles of Puerto Rico. The home of the tiny toads that never seem to quiet, landslides and road closures. This unforgiving jungle is where we suddenly called home to set up our small scale mining operation. We set out into the jungle with our crude maps drawn from our research looking for a lost Spanish gold mine. The very first day we re-discovered it and hit pay dirt with our first jungle gold. We continue to discover more gold prospecting throughout the jungle to bring you bags of gold paydirt.
The Golden Idea to Prospect in Puerto Rico
Having grew up reading books on lost gold mines and buried treasure, gold prospecting was something that we were always interested in. Then one day bored of our jobs and looking at a map, we decided to pack up the car and drive from New England to Alaska to pan for gold. Our Klondike adventures took us all throughout Alaska including Porcupine Creek and also wandering the Yukon wilderness. Although we didn't find much gold to speak of, the 20 hours of daylight in the Yukon and the Northern Lights in Alaska made it worth it.
After the Yukon we decided to head South back into the states and try our luck in California. We checked out areas of the California Gold Rush and Eureka.....we did NOT find any gold. Again though, even if we didn't find any gold panning in the mountain streams of California it was still worth it. We checked out National Parks and explored the coast. After a while we were in need of money so had to head back to New England to earn some.
This didn't kill our gold mining dream though and almost immediately in a last ditch effort, we had the idea to search for long lost gold mines of the Spanish in the Caribbean. It took over a year of research and traveling to 2 countries to search archives (sorry but I will be purposely secretive here) until we had mapped out every old Spanish gold mine in Puerto Rico. We were originally planning on going to the Dominican Republic (Hispaniola) to mine for gold. But due to the fact we didn't want to do any illegal gold mining and that Puerto Rico is part of the U.S., the Enchanted Island called us to it's jungle gold.
Beginner Gold Miners, Beginner Issues
After being in Puerto Rico for over a month, we had an incident that prompted us to realize prospecting for gold in the jungle is not as easy as we originally had thought. We shoveled a ton of gold bearing pay dirt from a hillside down to the stream below to wash the next day. Overnight rainstorms ensured our pile of gold paydirt was nowhere to be found the next day. This method was obviously not going to work very well. We had to find a better way and fast.
The excitement of our first jungle gold quickly faded. Gold production is not as simple as just grabbing it and taking it back to our compound. The terrain of the unforgiving jungle makes it nearly impossible to get equipment into our sites. In fact one of our sites takes about an hour an a half walking to get to. We found out that we could not use the same equipment as traditional miners. We knew where the gold was but had to figure out how to mine it efficiently.
This prompted us to think of clever ways to get our mining operation running. Our decisions here would be a huge gamble for our future gold. We found a lost Spanish gold mine, hit pay dirt and already had our mining site in place We just had to figure out how to get gold prospecting equipment to our gold site. Not having the options as traditional miners to bring in excavators or large sluices, we decided to run our mining operation more on the primitive side.
The solution was to carry in only small handheld prospecting equipment. We bring classifiers, gold pans, 5 gallon buckets and gold sluice boxes that breakdown to our mining site. We built primitive wooden ladders in some areas to help better access portions of our gold mining operation. After some trial and error with the gold sluices, we had our gold production dialed in. This now meant gold, gold, gold and more gold! This boosted our morale and kept our mining dreams alive.
Finally Some Jungle Gold
Before not long the gold was in our sluices at a very steady rate daily. This gave us time now to find a brand new claim, with the hopes of doubling our gold production. In fact, this plan "panned" out more than we could have dreamed of, as it more than tripled our gold production, once we found the plunge pool gold. Of course, the unforgiving jungle makes it very difficult to get to our hidden waterfall and it's plunge pool loaded with gold. However, due to the amount and size of gold nuggets at this location we only need a small amount of time at this gold location each week. If you are interested in panning some of our plunge pool gold, check out out bag of La Cascada gold paydirt.
With our brand new claim at our plunge pool, named La Cascada (the waterfall), and our original gold mining site called Rio de Oro (river of gold) we were busy all day pulling gold out of the Puerto Rican jungle. Also located above our Rio de Oro site is a hillside of gold bearing red clay with black sands. We have a gold paydirt bag named Rio de Oro with gravels from the river and also a gold paydirt bag named Taino.
Now I will not go as far as saying that there is a modern day gold rush in Puerto Rico. We do alright but nearly as well as the Spanish Conquistadors of centuries ago.However, in the past several years I have seen much more interest on the island and other parts of the Caribbean for gold prospecting than ever before. There are several videos to be found online of prospectors journeys here looking for gold. While we don't want to mention any names here, there was a certain guy who reviews paydirt and has guitar picks who came to Puerto Rico. So far Klesh was the closest to an old Spanish gold mine site that we have seen online. In fact he was very close to where you can pick up chunks of quartz and gold right of the ground. Ok, ok so I said his name.
Our gold mine sites are located in the Central Highlands of the island. The mining operation is up and running smoothly at this point. We can only mine when the weather permits. It rains quite often in the mountains and even just a shower in the morning is enough to ruin our gold mining for the day, due to the slippery muddy paths on steep hills. As long as we continue to produce at our gold mine, we will have bags of gold paydirt available to ship to you anywhere in the United States.
Update: Floods Claim Our First Couple Mine Sites
Due to heavy rains and landslides we are currently unable to get to our mine sites. We will be back as soon as we can!
The unforgiving jungle has claimed our mining operation. As you know we are not traditional miners. Due to heavy rains, flash floods and landslides we are not even able to get to our gold mine. All of our ladders were swept away down stream never to be seen again. Our small footpaths, most of which were carved out by us are gone as they literally slid down the side of the mountain. Our site on the hillside with such beautiful gold bearing red clays has literally slid down the hillside into our Rio de Oro.
We were barely able to get into our gold mines to take a look around. At this point even though things have been drying up we do not feel it is possible to continue our mining operation at either site. La Cascada site is obviously still there and due to the flooding probably has a new supply of plunge pool gold. Unfortunately, our network of paths and ladders at this location are gone as well. We even had to repel down a section to get to it but that doesn't look safe anymore.
For now we will head back to the states and let the jungle reclaim our gold mine, just as it centuries ago after the Spanish abandoned them. Two things are certain, we will keep our mining dreams alive and hope to come back one day to claim more jungle gold, and the coquis will never quiet.
Second Update: Gold Mining Operation Back Up and Running -Almost
Updated as of February 27 2023
We are back! Well, we are back in Puerto Rico at least. A gold mining operation may once again be in our future as we found a NEW brand new claim. We hit pay dirt again and found more jungle gold at a site not far upstream from our original Rio de Oro gold mine. We discovered a slightly more accessible way to the gold mine this time around. However it will still require extensive work to get us and the equipment in safely.
Once this work is completed and paths and ladders safely secured in place, we will hopefully once again begin producing jungle gold and be able to bring you Caribbean Gold Paydirt® once again. We have received tons of emails over all this time with encouraging words and an ongoing interest in our unique gold paydirt. We would like to thank everybody for supporting us in our gold mining dreams.