At first glance, the small lump in the earth looked like worthless scrap.
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On closer examination, the prospector guessed it was the tip of an "old horseshoe".
He dug deep into the soil – unearthing 30 centimetres – before finding the unthinkable.
Gold – 145 ounces of it – valued at more than $250,000.
"I really couldn't believe my eyes," said the prospector, who wanted to remain anonymous.
"It's like catching a big fish and not knowing what to do with it. Where do we put it? I washed it in water, covered it in aluminum foil and kept it in my oven on the first night."
The hobbyist found the "colossal" nugget while scouring Victoria's Golden Triangle on Friday.
It came just one day after he found a nine-ounce tennis ball-shaped nugget more than 60 centimetres deep.
Perhaps sensing that he was on a lucky streak, the well-seasoned prospector went back for more.
"I was in total disbelief as I didn't think nuggets of this size were still around," he said.
A lucky find perhaps, but the hobbyist had been hunting for his treasure on weekends for over a decade.
He made a pledge to his friends – also keen prospectors – to split the funds on any large gold find when the group went prospecting together.
The gold is now sitting in a bank vault, while a replica is being constructed and auction plans are in the works.
The prospector plans to use the fortune to buy a van and go on a road trip through Australia.
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