A sampler will need: A field map, baggies (Zip-lock), a marking pen (Sharpie, permanent marker) a pencil
(for recording field sample points) and a stout hand shovel. Other useful items would be a GPS a
compass and a backpack.
Geochemistry is a statistical process. A single sample point is used to represent the geochemical
value of an area. The size of this area is determined by the sample density. The point at which you
sample is only one value of the distribution of potential sample values available in the sampled
area. The significance of this is that geochemical sample points do not have to be precisely located.
Therefore the sampler should adjust the sampling location if the conditions of that sample are poor.
Disturbed or excavated areas should be avoided as should areas contaminated with hydrocarbons,
chemicals or animal wastes. Swamps and areas that are continually or seasonally under water should
not be sampled. The sampler should attempt to locate on the field map the sample point as closely
as possible to the actual sample site but absolute precision is not critical to the geochemical survey
results. A field vehicle odometer combined with topographic orientation will provide acceptable
sample locating precision unless sample density is less than 1/10 kilometer. GPS systems are both
inexpensive and accurate and are great for geochemical surveys.
Sample identification numbers should be as simple as possible. This saves time in the field and
reduces errors. The simplest system is consecutive numbers beginning with one. Letters preceding the
number (i.e. PRJ1) can uniquely identify the samples for each of your project areas. Prior to the
commencement of collection an adequate number of bags should be numbered and organized in
groups of ten. Using the bags sequentially and recording the bag number on the field map or
"marking" with a GPS at the time of collection eliminates almost all collection errors. Each sample
should be a composite of four to five equal scoops of soil separated by a few feet. Samples should
come from the top few inches of the soil. Rocks, coarse material, Plant debris, Insects and small
animals should be excluded. The total sample should be 200 to 300 grams (7 to 10 ounces). After
collection expel the air and carefully seal the baggie.
Soil should be collected from the top two inches.
The sample should be 7 to 10 ounces unless the soil is
unusually coarse then a larger sample may be needed to
provide sufficient fine fraction.
Three to five equal scoops should
be collected from the immediate area
and placed in the numbered bag.
Samples can be shipped directly to GrayStone Labs. A good way to ship your samples is in five gallon
buckets. Buckets can not be damaged during shipping, they hold forty to fifty pounds of samples and
they have a handle. Small and medium sized cardboard boxes also work well as long as you place the
samples in plastic trash bags to prevent moisture from reaching the cardboard and tape the box heavily.
Keep boxes less than 18 kg (40 lbs). The box should be sealed with heavy shipping tape and
addressed exactly as listed below. If you are sending samples from out of the United States please call
303-278-3252, and I'll give you the special shipping information you will need for the importation of soil
GrayStone Exploration Labs, Inc.
15400 W 44th Ave. Suite 21
Golden, CO 80403
Contents: Soil Samples
Ready for the Field
GrayStone Exploration Labs, Inc
GrayStone Exploration Labs, Inc