Two amateur gold prospectors and a hand-held metal detector have discovered a gold reef worth hundreds of thousands of dollars near Ballarat in western Victoria.

Steve Glasson and Russell Sanderson, both of Ballarat, credited their discovery to a “rich vein of luck” and a $6000 Australian-made Minelab GPX-4500 – described as the “Rolls Royce” of gold detectors.

“The deepest of the gold was covered by a metre of soil, so for the equipment to detect gold at that level is unbelievable,” Mr Sanderson said.

The discovery of “several hundred ounces” of gold at the undisclosed Ballarat location, represents the culmination of a combined 60 years of recreational prospecting by Messrs Glasson and Sanderson. “We’re both excited about the prospect of there being more gold in area,” Mr Glasson said.  “And if there is, the GPX-4500 will find it, we’re confident of that,” he said.

The gold reef – found in a 15 square metre area over a two-week period – has been sold to a private buyer as a collection for an undisclosed amount.

Amazingly, Mr Sanderson had searched the same area several years ago with older gold detecting equipment, and only found some small gold nuggets just below the surface.  The find was made about two months ago, but the prospectors have only now gone public with the extent of the discovery.

The two men plan to return to the area over the next few weeks with the GPX-4500 to see if there is more gold to be found.  

The GPX-4500 gold detector is made by Adelaide-based Minelab Electronics – part of the Codan Group – and the world’s leading manufacturer and distributor of metal detectors.

Coober Pedy Regional Times