The GPAA 2012 Gold and Treasure show in Pomona this year…while being nowhere near the size of the show I went to last year in Vegas, was still worth the price of parking and admission,and alot of fun nonetheless. Yes there were a few less vendors, notably the legendary BooCoo was absent, Grampa Howie and the Catch-It II Water Table were missing, Bunk and his Hermit and Burro Picks, Frank and his Ol Yeller Drywashers, Ruby and Clay and the Footprints Maps, Bill Thompson and his Thompson Drywashers and on and on, I guess it just goes to show you how the economy is doing these days, gas prices are high yet the current administration turns down an offer to pipe oil from Canada to Texas and pisses 20 thousand jobs away WOW, what a bunch of idiots!!
The Pomona show could also be slow due to the fact that Taxifornia as a state… is not very friendly to mining or miners rights to begin with so a lot of out of state vendors aren’t going to go out of their way to do business here and I don’t blame them. On the other hand it is apparent that capitalism will not be stifled…now or ever!! Here in Cali…or anywhere else!! No matter how hard they try, with high taxes and business killing legislation because I saw more than gold sparkling at that show yesterday, I saw creativity! I saw determination! and a will to succeed even if their own home state is trying its best to snuff their lights out, such as with the case of Pat & Mark Keene and their band of merry men from Keene Engineering, out of Chatsworth, Ca, they truly are a great group of guys…very friendly, very upbeat and very determined to keep going and get through this brutal economy in a state that wants to put them out of business, they had a nice spot up front right when you walk in the door and appeared to be doing quite well with a nice crowd gathered around looking over the equipment, I thought about buying one of their dredges so I could store it in my garage here in Santee Ca, for the next forty years until it becomes a museum piece but realized I probably won’t be alive in forty years and if I was I (beyond a shadow of a doubt) will not be living in Taxifornia. But if you want to help out a great business, these guys might just have the gold gettin’ prospecting gear your looking for at www.keeneeng.com/ give em a shout, tell em yer pal Bucket sent ya!!
Another group of guys that think out of the box so to speak were my Bakersfield buddies over at BBR Prospector mfg, these guys just plain got tired of shakin’ buckets and classifying dirt all day instead of doing the fun stuff like drywashing, sluicing or panning, so they decided to do what men have been doing for thousands of years…and that is figuring out a way to make a crappy job easier!!! Thus I present to you the results of long hours of refinement, trial and error, the “Earthquake Classifier” you just dump in dirt, grab a cold frosty and turn it on, now that’s prospecting!!! I think these guys had the most unique and outside the box item at the show but if you didn’t make the show stop by at www.bbrmfg.com and see what all the fuss is about.
After spending some time at the Keene and Earthquake booths it was time to sit down, take a breather and rest the back and get ready for round two,
we were sitting in some of the few chairs provided at the back of the hall when I happened to spot my pals Ted & Caroline heading our way, just in case you have forgotten, these two went out to Last Chance Canyon last year and managed to find one of the hardest “Geo-Boxes” I think we’ve ever planted!! Next to a tree that had since then fallen down making it even harder to locate but they did it and pulled out the box known as “The Hangin Tree” you can see their story in our “Finders Hall of Fame” so we took some pics with them , it was very cool.
I was able to stop by the ICMJ booth and talk with Chris Ralph who was in pretty good spirits coming off the success of his monster book “Fists Full of Gold” .We also had some words with Sue and Jim from The American Prospecter, www.aptsgold.com…out of Temecula,Ca… very cool if you ever want to try an outing and your in the Southern Cal area, they not only run a prospecting store front but have outings on a regular basis and they are our local store. I also saw the gang that sell the trinity gold pan…very cool, I already own one and I like it and recommend it.
One of the other booths that seemed to garner a lions share of attention and someone who’s been fortunate enough to have one of their products on the Discovery Channels monster hit show Gold Rush Alaska was Mike Pung, Steve Wilcox and the “Gold Cube”. Mike knows what he’s talking about and he knows how to market his little baby, he was very cool and very friendly to talk to the whole time and the Gold Cube was a compact little unit that you have to see to believe, lets just describe it as a sluice that looks like an accordian and instead of sticking out it goes down to the next level where it starts over again …you know what I mea…. oh never mind!! its hard to describe this thing you just have to see it for yourself at www.goldcube.net
So to wrap up the day which was about 2:30 for us, (others were still just arriving) and on the way out as usual I have to stop by the GPAA booth and have a brief chat with my buddy Dominic (who looked like the fry guy at the end of a Friday night shift at “In and Out burger”) he was lookin a bit worn out and ready to head for home, so for the GPAA I figured it had to have been a decent weekend, he said he had a lot of fun and met a of good folks and was ready for a rest before doing it again at the next show.
So as the Bucket & Boomer Crew wound out the tour at the 2012 GPAA Gold and Treasure show in Pomona, Taxifornia. I came away with the same feeling as I did last year in Vegas, I got to meet a lot of folks that I normally just do business with over the internet, its always cool when you met them face to face it was well worth the five schillings it cost to get in and even though the parking was a bit high…at ten bucks… I can’t get too pissed off, after all isn’t that capitalism as well?