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Any gold panning, mineral mining, or fossil hunting?

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Any gold panning, mineral mining, or fossil hunting?

I will be driving with my family from LA to San Francisco -- I'm assuming this really isn't gold country but anyone know of any spots along the way to try panning for gold, or to search for cool rocks, minerals, fossils or the like?

Would welcome any other suggestions of favorite things to do or see (or places to eat that are good but not too pricey) in Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, or anywhere else along the way.


-- Nancy

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1. Re: Any gold panning, mineral mining, or fossil hunting?

Go to your local rock shop or larger book store and buy: "Gem Trails of Northern California",expanded revised edition, and "Gem Trails ofSouthern California, expanded revised edition. There a quite a few hunting sites on hwy 101, and five sites along hwy 5. Chuck...

San Francisco
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for Death Valley Junction, Death Valley National Park
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2. Re: Any gold panning, mineral mining, or fossil hunting?

Does your trip include Yosemite? If so, you wlll be going through part of the Mother Lode, where the 1849 Gold Rush took place.

Many towns along Hwy 49 have outfitters or guides who do gold panning trips. Bigger towns include Auburn, Placerville, Jackson (all pretty far north of Yosemite), Murphys. Angel's Camp, Jamestown, and Sonora. Sonora is the biggest town near Yosemite where you have a good chance of finding guides. Coloma (near Placerville) is where gold was first discovered, and there are areas along the American River where you can pan at large, but you'd have to buy or rent pans or sluice boxes. Columbia (near Sonora) is a state historic park with a gold panning feature, but it is in a tank of water, not s stream.

3. Re: Any gold panning, mineral mining, or fossil hunting?

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