In year 2002 i bought a gold mine within deep north of Finnish Lapland. 2ha claim over a creek that has been mined for past 70 years. Mining started (for me) on that claim in 2003 by doing series of test pannings and test holes. Very little gold was found initially, but in retrospective i now know that we were Very close back then, just missed by couple of meters. During years 2004, 2005 and 2006 nothing much happened because i was bogged down by work and non-armed service (civilian service?). But in 2007 i went back and started to mine. Almost imeaditly i struck proper gold finaly. During summer of 2007 i brought over my cousin, with whom we finally started producing some tangible results. Not that much gold was recovered, but most importantly after years of searching, we had finally found the spot.
Throught the following years more gold was recovered, and year 2010 was especially good year, so good infact that the income from the mine alone allowed me to obtain new machinery. How ever trouble is on the horizon. Recently Finnish government issued new Law that practically makes end of this type of mining (small scale manual mining without the use of any chemicals). Reasons are said to be natural preservation issues, but at the same time the very same goverment is allowing free reign for big multinational heavy industry mining corporations, and are sacrificing over 150 year old gold mining culture with its tiny impact on environment but invaluable addition to cultural richness of Lapland.
Photo by Mark Poutanen
Below is production chart for you to wonder about. Keep in mind, that the effective mining season is 2½ - 4 months in a year, and at the site there is no constant electricity, no roads no nothing really. Its wilderness. Green line represents ammount of ground that has been processed in units of cubic meters. The orange line is of course the ammount of gold recovered in grams. As you quickly can see, its not "get rich quick" method. I like to think it more as "lottery" where you always win something. Someday you might strike big!