By Dave McCracken General Manager




Most members will be aware that the California Department of Fish & Game (DFG) is in the process of redoing the Environmental Impact Report (EIR) and proposing new Suction Dredging Regulations. They have been working on this for over a year, now; and are getting ready to release formal Drafts of what they have come up with. Once they release the Drafts, there will be a public comment period. These public meetings will be part of the public comment process. After considering all of the comments, they will ultimately release something that will be final.

We just received word that DFG has reserved locations for the five public meetings during the review period for the Draft Suction Dredge Regulations and Draft Supplemental EIR. All meetings will start at 5 pm and run no later than 10 pm.

Important note: Our original December Newsletter announced a meeting schedule that the California Department of Fish & Game (DFG) was planning, so they could receive public input to their proposed new suction dredge regulations in California (which are not available for viewing, yet).
Since then, we have been informed by DFG that they are running behind schedule, so are cancelling the meetings that we announced in our December newsletter. Here is the announcement we just received by email from DFG:
We will put out another update once DFG sets a new meeting schedule.

We have not yet seen any of what DFG will propose in these Drafts. But based upon the way they have been doing things over the last several years, there is plenty of reason to suspect that we will not be happy with everything they propose. Personally, I doubt that California’s Administrative agencies have listened to any of the voters’ message in November that we want less government spending and regulation, but who knows?. Never the less, we should be prepared do go in and give them an earful during these meetings.

Please take note of the times and places, and pencil in one or more of the meetings on your calendar if you are within a reasonable distance. It is going to be important that DFG hears a strong message from the people! If you cannot attend any of the meetings, please stay tuned and you will have an opportunity to submit written comments. We will be sending something out to all our subscribers and supporters as soon as we have had an opportunity to view the Drafts. If you have not done so already, please click on this link to sign up for our free monthly Internet newsletter.

Invitation by the Bear!

Here is a reminder that we do have some mining properties in Quartzsite Arizona where some of our members go during the winter months.

QuartzsiteFor any members looking for something different to do this winter, one of our very supportive members, Kenneth Murray, otherwise known as “The Bear,” has opened up an RV Camp in Dolan Spring, Arizona.

Google Earth: 35 39’00.97’€N 114 14’34.62″W

The camp is only set up for dry camping at this time. He is extending a discounted rate of $5 per night to New 49’er members to stay in his camp. There are several local organizations that make mining property available out there. You can talk to Bear about the local opportunities.


I spent some time in Dolan Springs a few years back, and the prospectors out there were doing pretty well with metal detectors and dry washers. Some were finding some really nice nuggets!

Bear’s camp is north of Kingman, Arizona on Route 93. Once in Dolan Springs, you go north to 19th Street and turn left. Then go to Mead Drive. The camp is 2/10ths of a mile out there on the left.

I strongly advise any members to make contact with the Bear in advance of your arrival and confirm these directions: (702) 437-4533 email:


Two Ounces of Gold and More to be Drawn on December 31st!

This is one of our best Prize Drawings yet! Through the hard work of Jim Yerby and several others, we have accumulated a bunch of great prizes. There are two ounces of beautiful gold from Craig Colt and myself. These have already been made into four quarter-ounce prizes and twenty 1-pennyweight prizes. Longtime, supportive member, Herbert Miller, has also donated a slightly-used 4-inch Keene dredge (with hookah-air). And there are 26 additional prizes, including a Back pack Super High Banker from Gold Cat Industries, a hand sluice from Louie’s Welding and several more batches of beautiful placer gold.

The girls in our office are submitting a prize ticket for this drawing for each $10 contribution to our legal fund that we receive from you ($100 will create 10 tickets, etc.). There is no limit to the number of tickets that can be created in your name, or the number of prizes that you can win in the next drawing.

The drawing will take place on New Years Eve, December 31, 2010. That will only be a few weeks off from when you receive this newsletter. So I suggest you either call your contributions into the office use our Internet link.

Legal contributions can be made by sending a check to The New 49’ers, P. O. Box 47, Happy Camp, CA 96039. Contributions can also be called into our office at 530 493-2012. Or, you can click on our secure Donate link.

Any contributions that we receive late for this drawing will automatically generate tickets into the next drawing (more gold prizes).

This is a good time to send in your contributions. Besides our active participation in three ongoing court challenges to small-scale mining, we have also been diverting thousands of dollars to support Eastern Oregon Miners Association and the Waldo Miners Association defend against challenges to small-scale mining in the State of Oregon.

I know it is supposed to be about jobs, jobs, jobs; but all of the talk aside, anti-mining activists and some government agencies are working hard to rid the public lands of small-scale gold mining. We have to continue the good fight, or we will lose our rights. That’s what we are faced with. If it were not for your ongoing support, we would have lost our small-scale mining rights years ago.

Anything you can do will be greatly appreciated!

The New 49’ers Prospecting Association, 27 Davis Road, Happy Camp, California 96039 (530) 493-2012