Last year as I drove up the Judith Mountains I casually glanced over at the town of Maiden and kept on going. The trails up the mountain top to the abandoned radar station had my attention, but this year the idea of returning to the area and checking out why so many people were interested in Maiden, Montana in the 1880’s was why a visit to this area was put on the calendar. This year it was not so much what was at the top of the hill, but rather on the way up because gold flows down, if that’s what you are after and not those smoky quartz dobe pieces up further.
There are lots of historical facts about Maiden, Montana to check out and certainly the connection with Gilt Edge loom and are a draw for the weekend warrior of rocky proportions. Here is some information about the area and certainly public lands around are places where one can pan for gold. That’s of course if you are fresh from the Chokecherry Festival which might consume all your money and you will have to go to the hills to find some of Montana’s treasure to replenish your coffers. It can be done, just do it!! Search for gold all around like the original prospectors did so long ago. You can participate in the legacy of gold prospecting with some modern twists.
My best friends since 1976 from Lewistown who have a claim up in the same hills drew my interest in prospecting long ago. Clifford Kuhnhausen was a fabulous man with a cabin up on the hills and a mine down below. His son, Wes mines it now with his son who has complications with the government so experiences are limited with the mining legacy left behind by an avid prospector. The Judith Mountains are very familiar site of opportunity with many Lewistown people including George Berg who grew up in those hills and have told many a tale around the Kuhnhausen dinner or breakfast table. There is a draw of folks to the Lewistown area and there is a reason behind it; the lure of minerals are at the basis of much of it.
Haul Out You GPS & Find Any State or Federal Land in This Lucrative Area To Pan For Gold Like The Forefathers Did
In 2016 at the Central Montana Prospectors Great Falls Farmers’ Market booth an acquaintance Eileen Humphreys began talking about her excursions with her nephew outside of Utica. She had mentioned that she had stopped along the riverbank near the Yogo Sapphire Mine and panned for gold. She said she was surprised to find chunks of silver including gold in her pan on the first swipe. I knew then I wanted to seek out sites along the Middle Fork of the Judith River as I had also heard at the Missouri River Diner from a customer there, that this was a lucrative spot for panning gold. It was easy to put this destination at the same time as the What the Hay as it gave an opportunity to tour the What the Hay display and head up the hills out of Utica for some gold panning after the whirl wind tour of the stubble fields of Utica and having some home baked pies from the local club house. That was the plan for the first weekend after Labor Day which is always the teaming of the two events in Central Montana. You can see that this idea was a pretty good one and it was just before the giant snow that befell Montana in September. Hallelujah.