Our Prospector’s Field Supply List:

-Flashlight: you want a flashlight for inspecting metals closely, and for looking into cracks and caves. We’d recommend a headlamp for any sort of spelunking or underground expeditions. They’re better overall, since you can leave your hands free.

-Shovel-we like collapsible, aluminum shovels. These are lighter and more packable. You’ll want something you can stow away in your framepack. You could also buckle a shovel onto the side, so you’re not putting dirt inside.

-Ziploc Bags: For storing any gold you find.

-Framepack: for bringing all your gear into the field. They’re the best choice for longer expeditions. We like framepacks better for gold prospecting because it’s easier to attach a metal detector and a shovel to one of these than to a normal backpack.

-Metal detector: Obviously the nicer the better. If you’re just a hobbyist like most of us, there’s no need to buy professional grade equipment. Just make sure you find something rugged and powerful, with a good loud headset.

-A few good pairs of shoes:

In 2016 there are plenty of options for gold prospecting shoes. You can find waterproof, Goretex boots, cushioned hiking shoes, or water shoes if you’re going to be spending time in rivers and streams. We’d encourage you to read this before you get started.

-Gold test kit: small chemical sets which will tell you immediately if you’ve found gold, or whether you’re on a wild goose chase. These are a must for every gold hunter.

-Gold prospecting set: a combination of a strainer basket, testing vials, and tweezers for panning rivers and streams.

Getting Started:

Where to look for gold

-abandoned buildings
-Rivers and stream

You don’t even have to look for a new site! Thousands of gold mines dug in the late 1800s and early 1900s were abandoned in the wartime call to arms! They’re just sitting around waiting to be exploited. Old gold mines are scattered across North America, mainly in the Rockies and Western US and Canada.