Australian strikes gold worth $69K in wilderness

Canberra: An Australian man has unearthed a 1.4 kilo gold nugget with the help of a metal detector while wandering Western Australia’s gold fields, media reports said on Monday.

A shop in Kalgoorlie shared pictures of the rock online, estimated to be worth $69,000. The unidentified man is an experienced local hobbyist, shop owner Matt Cook, told the BBC.

“He walked into my shop and showed me the nugget in his hand with a big smile on my face,” Cook told the BBC. “It just a bit bigger than a packet of smokes, and the density of it was incredible, so heavy.”

Cook, who sells supplies to gold prospectors, said the man detected the piece on some saltbush flats, about 45cm below the surface.

Finds of this scale by prospectors are known to happen a few times a year, experts said.

About three-quarters of the gold mined in Australia is produced in and around the Kalgoorlie region.