My name is Michael, and I live in the beautiful mountains of Western North Carolina - and I'm about to delve back into dowsing; which I've had an on again/ off again affair for many years. There's a lot more information than I'd ever imagined on the net.
As a small child, and uncle of mine introduced me to dowsing by taking me out and testing me with a willow branch (he was a very well respected "water finder" who helped people who had given up on well-diggers). I managed to scare myself badly with the branch's unexpected reactions, and was deemed a "natural". "Naturally", I didn't try it again for years - just because of the initial shock. When I did return to dowsing, it was because I'd received a pair of L-Rods as a gift. I had great success with them, but once again just kind of "strayed away".
I've felt compelled to return to the hobby and have just ordered a set of L-Rods on Ebay, and I'm experimenting with a homemade pendulum that I also wear as a pendant. At this point, I'm just reacquainting myself with the whole practice and will initially use my rods & pendulum to find "special" areas of the forest I live in; and yes, maybe dowse for gold in the nearby river.
Nice to find this place... looks like good reading