Approximately one hundred people work in these illegal gold mines near the Chinese border in the Gobi Desert.
While one person digs underground, the others heave the stones up in buckets and break them up.
The Ninjas dig into the heavy soil with simple means, here in a dried-up riverbed of a desert river which has not had water in years.
This Nomad told me that he isn’t getting enough money for the cashmere wool of his goats today and that his family is dependent on the income from the gold.
if you want to achieve a solid yield you will get more gold using highly toxic mercury, which separates the gold from the stone.
Most Ninjas come from a nomadic background. This man, however, has studied automotive engineering in Russia.
Ninjas carving up a goat. The meat is cut into strips, hung inside the yurt and dried.
the windlass has no breaking mechanism, and without additional protection he could fall as far as 25 metres if a colleague accidentally let go of the windlass.
NINJA – gold rush in Mongolia – informal gold mining in the Gobi Desert
The Ninjas use a pneumatic hammer and dynamite to tunnel up to 70 metres into the solid rock.
Ninjas preparing a controlled explosion, with fuses and detonators. As they only have limited expertise, the risk is immense.
Sprengung, illegale Goldmine, Wüste Gobi
A day’s yield of gold
Gold-digger on motorcycle during a dust storm. Frequently, the mercury-contaminated mud is lying around openly. Over time, the wind spreads the mercury along wi