Casual Gold Panning

Looking for free places to  pan for gold

The book I have  is Kevin Singel’s Finding Gold in Colorado. It is supremely helpful in finding places to hunt for gold for free in Colorado. Great hints, very specific. I have gone to several spots and the directions and descriptions are right on.

You can also pan in National Forests and BLM.

Rules for National Forests

I found that most National Forests allow panning. Pan and shovel seems to be tools that are permitted in the most areas. (Some people have lots of machinery: metal detectors, sluicers, dredges, high bankers, trommels and machinery to run them. Depends on the individual area within the NF as to what is allowed. ) Most wilderness areas do not permit panning or detecting.

Rules for BLM

“There is no requirement for notifying the BLM of casual use activities. Casual use activities are those that cause only negligible disturbance of public lands and resources. For example, activities that do not involve the use of earthmoving equipment or explosives may be considered casual use.”

Good Manners

  • fill in any holes you make
  • no digging on the banks of the waterways
  • pick up all trash
  • pay attention to land boundaries
  • utmost respect for private property

There are mining claims and private property on both BLM and NFS lands. These boundaries  are often hard to discern. Often there are no  boundary markers.  GPS is good to 15 feet, so even that is not exact. I use mylandmatters  and/or thediggings to see if there is an active claim anywhere near. And use Google Earth.  NFS MVU (motor vehicle use ) maps show private land, but finding the exact boundary is sometimes problematic. You can get 3 free Avenza maps on your phone/ipad/computer. Those are better than the folding/paper MVU maps.

Panning for gold/ metal detecting for gold is free, rewarding and entertaining. You will learn lots about government rules, mining claims, and geology. And maybe get gold!

panning for gold



This entry was posted in Truck Camping Hints, truck camping hobby and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Casual Gold Panning

  1. Kevin Singel says:

    I’m honored to see my book mentioned in your blog! Feel free to reach out to me if you’ll be anywhere near me (Silverthorne, CO) and we can go dig together. Meanwhile, also check out my website


    • Mas Prema says:

      Thank you for commenting on the blog. Thank you bunches for sharing your knowledge. Am in AZ now hunting for gold in the arroyos. Your book led me to some wonderful spots. Thank you.

      On Tue, Dec 22, 2020 at 5:53 PM Truck Camper Hints wrote:



  2. Harley Gurl says:

    Wow! Exciting! I love reading about your adventures. I know how thrilling finding gold flakes can be, when many years ago I got to experience gold panning while living in BC, Canada. I won’t forget how exciting it was to pan, and then of course find some flakes. Today I am a gemstone and crystal collector, and of course any cool rocks I can find. I am glad to hear through this pandemic you are finding peace and doing what keeps you happy. Keep it up. Love your stories


  3. Cindy Rogers says:

    Wow, I love living vicariously through your adventures. Pretty cool your finding some flakes 😁🤟😀


  4. Carol says:

    Your adventures in panning for gold are so interesting to someone stuck at home due to the virus. Absolutely love learning from you. While searching for gold, do you look for gemstones too? I don’t know one rock from another, but find them interesting. May your pan be filled with gold. I’ll be as excited as you.


    • Mas Prema says:

      I haven’t done any gemstone hunting. Yet. I have done lots of hunting for meteorites, without finding one. This gold hunting is perfect for virus-time. I am all by myself mostly. A few curious campers. I get very very thrilled with every flake! Stay safe. Thanks for reading the blog! ❤️🙏

      On Sat, Sep 12, 2020 at 5:20 AM Truck Camper Hints wrote:

      > > > > > > > > >


  5. Wendy Ellsworth says:

    I have a vial of gold flakes that someone in my family panned for in Alaska in the early 1900’s! Sounds like it’s giving you something to focus on while you’re enjoying the freedom of your life on & off the road. I’m enjoying your posts & photos!


    • Mas Prema says:

      Hi Wendy! Doing the panning, with feet in the water, surrounded by trees and birds and sky is so yummy. Neat that you have some Alaska gold. Are you going to use it one day?

      On Fri, Sep 11, 2020 at 11:21 AM Truck Camper Hints wrote:

      > > > > > > > > >


Leave a Reply to Mas Prema Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s