How Does Gold End Up As Nuggets?

26 April 2018, 17:23 | Updated: 26 April 2018, 17:51

Gold Nuggets
Picture: N/A

Mystery Hour Question

Where do gold nuggets come from? Why has the metal ended up forming in that particular way and all clustered together? Simon, Rutland

Name: Dave, Hammersmith

Qualification: Former Mining Geologist



Gold naturally occurs in veins, usually quartz veins, in thin flakes.

When the vein is destroyed, gold gets washed down the river.

The quartz breaks up when bashed against other rocks.

But the gold is soft, so like foil it scrunches up into nugget form.

This is why people pan for gold nuggets in river bends.