Gold occurs in iron ore and also in veins of quartz. The veins are called lodes. Some of these veins are huge. Think of the vein as a layer in the rock or a layer of quartz in the rock mountain. Gold miners chip, stamp, blast, blow up or spray powerful water guns onto the veins to break up the gold. The gold then makes its way into the gravel beds of rivers and streams. Miners trace the gold upstream looking for the original vein. That source, they called the mother of the gold, hence, Mother Lode.
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