Best Gold Mining And Metal Detecting Locations In Arizona
So, lets have a look at some of the best gold mining locations in Arizona. Most of these areas lack rivers or creeks, at least in the vicinity of the gold-bearing grounds. Therefore they are mostly recommended for metal detecting or dry panning.
If youre interested in gold-bearing rivers, then just scroll past these 10 sites listed below.
Yavapai County Rich Hill
The Weaver Rich Hill district is located near the intersection of four townships, each one being one of Arizonas top gold areas.
Township 14 0090N 0050W ranks third in the state with 179 placer claims. Township 14 0090N 0040W ranks fifth with 127 placer claims, 14 0100N 0050W ranks eleventh with 93 placer claims, and 14 0100N 0040W ranks 24th with 39 placer claims.
Rich Hill was first mined in the 1860s, and by 1883 around a million dollars in gold had been produced. The following excerpt from the USGS publication Placer Gold Deposits of Arizona gives some clues as to where gold may be found today in this area:
At the top of Rich Hill, gold was found under boulders and in crevices in the granite bedrock, where it was quickly gathered by prospectors during the early years after the discovery of the placers. Below Rich Hill, in Antelope and Weaver Creeks, the gold was found in reconcentrated stream gravels, a few feet thick to more than 50 feet thick, that contained numerous large holders.
This placer mining area covers 40 square miles and is known to be a place where many large gold nuggets have been discovered.
What Are The Requirements For Small Miner’s Fee Waiver
You may file a Small Miner’s Waiver if you own 10 or fewer claims and/or sites throughout the assessment year nationwide and will perform $100 worth of assessment work on your claims for the upcoming assessment year . All claims, mill sites, and tunnel sites must be listed on the Small Miner’s Waiver, AND the Small Miners Waiver must contain the original signatures of all claimants/owners having an interest in the claims/sites. If an agent signs for any of the claimants/owners, a notarized designation of agent, signed by all claimants/owners must be submitted with the waiver. You can find more information within the Small Miners Waiver Information Sheet .
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Best Rivers And Creeks In Arizona
Due to the dry and arid climate, Arizona gold prospectors mostly have to resort to dry panning and metal detecting. However, Arizona is a big state, and there are still many gold-bearing rivers out there, although quite some of them are dry for long periods.
Many of the rivers listed below have been mined for nearly 150 years. And of course, there is still plenty of gold left to be found!
Where To Go Detecting In Arizona
When it comes to finding hidden treasures or searching for valuable items with a detecting machine, there is probably no other state that has as many treasure tales as Arizona does!
In fact, the stories of hidden treasures in there might surprise you and will also keep you busy for years
Some of the Ideal places to search through with a detector in hand are as follows:
- Hunting for Roy Gardeners train robbery loot near Flagstaff
- Searching between the Cerro Colorado mine and the Cerro Colorado Mountains for stolen bullion
- Near the Tumacacori Mission there are rumors of a hidden underground silver mine in the area
- Hunting for Bronco Bills stolen booty near Solomon
- The area near Canyon Station
- Foothills of the Cerbat Mountains
- Davis Mountains
- Black Canyon City
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Why Ebay Is The Best Place To Buy Mining Claims
I have worked in the mining industry for 18 years and co-founded four junior mining companies including one public company. When I first heard that people were selling mining claims on Ebay I was super skeptical and even dismissive. I thought Ebay would attract too many scams and that the buyers would not be sophisticated
Where Do I File
Bureau of Land Management-Arizona State OfficeOne North Central Avenue, Suite 800Phoenix, AZ 85004-4427 Phone: 602-417-9528 – Information Access Center
Filing requirements are subject to change.
As an owner of mining claims, you are responsible for keeping yourself informed of the changes in the filing requirements and the mining laws. Congress may pass legislation affecting filing requirements and, consequently, the procedure may change. We recommend that you view our website periodically to stay up to date. For additional information contact the Information Access Center at 602-417-9528.
The use of the forms referred to in these filing instructions are optional however, it is strongly recommended that current forms be used. The Bureau of Land Management Waiver Form must be usedit’s not optional. Use of these forms will ensure that you provide the listing of all serial numbers, claim and/or site names, the original signatures required on the filings, and all other information that is necessary for you to complete your filing. These filing instructions and forms have been provided to you as a courtesy.
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Lynx Creek Gold Pan Day Use Area
This day use area is primarily used for recreational gold panning. Follow these links to find a map of the Lynx Creek Mineral Withdrawal Area and regulations governing its use.
Lynx Lake Recreation Area Brochure Brochure correction: Camping is allowed for a total of 14 days out of each 30-day period on the Prescott National Forest. including at Lynx Lake area campgrounds.
- No garbage service – Please pack it out
What Other Finds You Should Expect There
Arizona has a rich history and it is one of the most beloved states for detectorists to search for gold!
While gold is the primary item that people look for in the state and in most cases, also successfully find, there are also some other finds that you might find in Arizona.
From ancient coins to valuable jewelry and relics, there is a possibility of finding many other things there
Silver items are also something many hobbyists end up finding there.
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Best Detector For Arizona Soil
Arizona is one such state where almost every type of soil can be found, with only the exception of tropical soils
There is a lot of clay present in Arizona ground which is also very alkaline due to the presence of clay. Under the surface soil, there is also very hard to penetrate layer present known as caliche.
In Arizona, there is also another common type of soil found that is known as Casa Grande. This type covers several million acres of southwestern and central Arizona. Casa Grande soil is low in a nutrient.
In such type of state where there is a lot of different varieties of soil to be found, the best device to opt for would be an all-terrain detector!
One of the notorious ones is the Garrett AT Pro Though priced higher than other models, it is one of the most high-tech devices and its machinery and electrical system is second to none
At the same time, the machine is very easy to use for both beginners and seasoned practitioners. The company, Garrett Electronics, has also been around for many years and they are well aware of what a detectorist is looking for in an All-Terrain machine.
The model comes with automatic and manual ground balancing, which are essential to have even better results
There is coin depth detection, as well as high-resolution iron-detecting, mid-range frequency, as well as super-fast recovery time!
Are There Detection Clubs In Arizona
This hobby is a very popular there, especially with many detectorists coming to the state to search for gold! As a result, there are many detecting clubs in the state
Some of the most popular ones include:
- Superstition West Treasure Hunters
- Superstition Mountain Thers Club
- Mohave Prospectors Association
- Colorado River Treasure Seekers
- Roadrunner Prospectors Club
- Arizona Association Of Gold Prospectors
- Quartzsite MDing Club
- Southeast Arizona Relic and Coin Hunters
- Gila Valley Treasure Hunters
- Gold Rock & Gem Adventures
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The Legend Of Lost Duchman’s Gold Mine
In Arizona there is a legend called Lost Duchman’s Gold Mine, which is essentially a lost gold fortune located east of Phoenix. Nobody knows the exact location and even the general area is sometimes disputed. But most people believe it to be located near the Superstition Mountains.
People have been searching for this lost gold mine since 1892, and they still search for it today. Some have even died searching for it.
So is there any truth to this myth? Nobody knows for sure, but it’s possible that there is a lost gold fortune in Arizona waiting to be found.
How Much Public Land Is There
There are quite literally hundreds of millions of acres that are open to prospecting. Anyone can go out and use small-scale mining equipment to look for gold. If you find gold you are free to keep it without telling a sole. You dont have to report it to the government and you dont have to pay taxes on it until you sell it.
This public land is generally managed by either the Forest Service or the Bureau of Land Management. Most of it is found in the western United States. There are 18 states with open federal land for prospecting most of it lies within 12 states. Washington, Oregon, California, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah, Colorado, New Mexico and Alaska.
Some public lands are also managed by the state rather than on a federal level. These lands can also provide good opportunities, but each state rules will vary so you will need to research each one if you want to prospect on state land.
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How To Get Your Permit There
The Arizona State Land Department is the primary government body that gives out the permits for this activity!
Even BLM offices in the state can give you permits for detection activities If you want to explore national forests, then you need to obtain the permit from the US Forest Service local office present in the state
If you are in doubt about where you can get the permit from, you can always ask the forest officer in charge and find out about the detailed procedure!
To detect at state parks, you should seek for the park manager or the park superintendent Permission.
Mining In Central Arizona
Northwest of Phoenix, Wickenburg once hosted the Arizona Territory’s richest gold mine. Now you can visit Robson’s Ranch & Mining Camp, which re-creates an old mining camp, or take a self-guided tour of the abandoned Vulture Mine.
Drive the winding mountain roads from Wickenburg up to Jerome, where sights include Jerome State Historic Park, a former mine owner’s mansion, the Jerome Historical Society Mine Museum and the Gold King Mining Museum & Ghost Town. In nearby Clarkdale, the Verde Canyon Railroad runs along tracks once used to haul minerals from Jerome.
Mining-related attractions along the spectacular Apache Trail east of Phoenix include the rare ore specimens at Superstition Mountain Museum, re-created Goldfield Ghost Town and the Lost Dutchman State Park, named for the world-renowned gold mine that prospectors are still trying to find.
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Mohave County Geology: Can I Dig Gold On My Land
A mineral claim monument is pictured in the Cerbat Mountains. Theres a name scratched on the rocks under the monument P. Fugina, 1881.
While four-wheeling with friends in an area where early prospectors had found placer gold, I was asked if it was legal for us to do some panning. I answered yes, a person can pan for gold on Bureau of Land Management land, if its not claimed, and then realized my friends might not be familiar with the 1872 Mining Law. This law was instrumental in colonizing the West and is still on the books.
The settling of the West is different than the eastern U.S. Land ownership in the East was determined by various methods initially derived from English Common Law. Companies or investment groups were granted charters from the Crown to colonize an area and granted title to the surface and all resources of that particular area. The West was different. No longer a colony of England, most of the large expanse that was the western U.S. didnt have owners, except for a few Spanish land grants. During the 1849 gold rush, miners found themselves in a legal vacuum so each mining area, or mining district, made its own mineral rights laws.
The U.S. federal government recognized the problem. They also realized that to incentivize people to leave their comfortable homes to go out into the wilderness and risk the many hazards that existed they needed a new law. Enter the 1872 Mining Law for federal lands.
Arizona Gold Mining History
The history of Arizona indeed has been tightly knit to gold already from the very beginning.
In 1912, when Arizona became the 48th state in the Union, President Taft signed the statehood proclamation with a golden pen, made from gold mined in local gold mines.
However, the history of gold in the area goes back even further than that. Already in the 16th century, Spanish Conquistadors roamed the area, looking for the precious metal. While they didnt seem to find much, some 200 years later, Franciscan priests started processing placers in Southern Arizona. Its believed that they managed to mine significant amounts, but of that no records have survived to prove it.
As you probably know, in 1848 Arizona became U.S Territory, and with that Americans began their quest for gold in the area. Many of the first venture seekers were former so-called 49ers who hadnt had that much success in the Californian gold rush.
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The Legend Of Lost Dutchmans Gold Mine
One of the most famous lost mines in the US can be found in Arizona and is calledLost Dutchmans Gold Mine.
The legend has it that a German immigrant by the name Jacob Waltz discovered the mine and its riches in the 19th century, but never disclosed the location.
Even since 1892, a total of nearly 10,000 people are estimated to have ventured out in the wilderness in search of the mine, but to no avail. The mine lies hidden to this date but is still regularly looked for.
Want to go head out and look for it yourself?
Well, its believed to located around Superstition Mountains east of Phoenix.
Thats all we know at the moment!
Oil & Gas Leases Ke13s
This Lease grants the right to explore for and develop oil and gas resources. This includes crude oil, natural gas, other hydrocarbons, CO2, helium, and other substances of a gaseous nature, which are also referred to as leasable minerals. Although actual production in the State is minimal, oil and gas leasing generally represents the second biggest use of State Trust land after grazing.
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Special Areas Of Interest
It depends on whether the collecting activity is commercial or noncommercial in nature and subject to river-administering agency regulation. Mining under the 1872 mining law is a commercial and business activity tied to valid existing rights of claims and is regulated as such . Non-commercial mineral collecting for recreational purposes may be authorized by the Bureau of Land Management or the U.S. Forest Service depending on the amounts collected, size and scale of activity, resource values impacted, and river management objectives.
what exactly is a noncommercial gold prospector?
The Best Places Start Exploring
As mentioned earlier, most of the public lands in the U.S. are managed by either the Forest Service or the Bureau of Land Management.
We may be too late for the Gold Rush, but the nice thing about prospecting today is that most of the richest mining areas are well-documented. With a bit of research it isnt hard to find a rich mining area.
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What Are The Metal Detecting Laws In Arizona
This hobby there comes under the Arizona Antiquities Act as well as federal laws such as the ARPA Law!
It is permissible to detect in the national forests in there, but you might require a permit. You can get a Special Use Permit from the US Forest Service
However, keep in mind that permits might not be granted in each individual case, though the applications will be reviewed.
Land that falls under the Bureau of Land Management , searching for relics and artifacts, including old bottles or any pieces of buildings and equipment is not allowed without having the requisite permit!
Permits are usually only given to people who meet the departments specific qualifications!
There is no rule in place for searching for coins on BLM land. In fact, there is no rule in Arizona about detecting non-relic materials.
On Arizona state lands, no archaeological collecting is allowed without a permit, especially those archaeological items that are at least 100 years old or older. This also includes jewelry, textiles, pottery, tools, weapons, etc. This, however, does not include bottles, coins, and arrowheads.
Since there are many different sets of rules for various things in Arizona, it is always advisable that you check in with the local authorities regarding the law applicable at the place where you want to detect.
Gold Prospecting In Prescott
Did you know Arizona is one of the best states in the U.S. for gold prospecting? It might seem like that time is long past its prime, but many recreational gold panners say prospecting provides a reason to enjoy a wilderness outing and yes, theyve found a few gold flakes and nuggets around the Prescott area. There are even local clubs, an excellent way to gain access to private claims where you can freely look for gold and the members provide you with tips on locations and equipment.
So, grab your gold pan or metal detector and head for the rivers! But remember, all land is owned by someone, so get permission before entering anyones property, especially if you are going to prospect it.
Heres what we know:
- Gravity causes gold to concentrate in rivers, so theyre one of the best places to look for gold. Some riverbeds are dry for parts of the year, but the gold is still there if you use the proper prospecting techniques.
- Gold is very heavy, so you need to dig down until you get to a place where the gold cant go any further. This can be hard-packed dirt, large rocks, roots, and clay. Dont bother with sandy, loose soil.
- The best areas to find gold are where gold has been found previously, specifically the Prescott area. This is easy since there are many books on the subject and you can do prior research.
- Arizona is one of the best states for gold prospecting, because of the history of the area and there is also good access to public lands that are open to prospecting.
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