Distribution of gold in humus-rich forest soil (mull) reflects the known distribution of gold deposits in bedrock in the Empire district, Colorado. Gold from the bedrock is accumulated by pine and aspen trees and is concentrated in the mull by the decay of organic litter from the trees. Anomalies in mull which do not coincide with known gold deposits merit further exploration. The gold anomalies in soil (6- to 12-inch depth) and in float pebbles and cobbles poorly reflect the known distribution of gold deposits in bedrock beneath the extensive cover of colluvium and glacial drift.
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Utilization of humus-rich forest soil (mull) in geochemical exploration for gold