The main problem in geochemical exploration for gold ore bodies in the 40 km2 hydrothermally altered area at Goldfield is to decide which of the many silicified ledges exposed are most likely to yield deposits with additional subsurface exploration. We conclude that the most efficient way to search for exploration targets is to collect rock samples from the ledges and analyze for the following elements in decreasing order of priority: gold, lead and silver, bismuth, and mercury. These elements form relict hypogene aureoles restricted to the ledges and are not appreciably redistributed during supergene leaching.
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Geochemical explorations for gold deposits at Goldfield, Nevada