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Free Panning/Sluicing Areas, Colorado
ColoradoProspect...
post Jul 26 2007, 12:22 PM
Post #1


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Hello everyone,

Many folks inquire about free places to pan or sluice, so we thought we would post some free areas around Colorado that anyone can go to anytime they wish.
These are places where you are either "allowed", or given permission to pan/sluice on private (patented) land or it's public land withdrawn from mineral entry (unclaimable) which we can all still prospect with our pans and sluices.
All 3 are historically known as gold bearing areas and chances are very good you WILL FIND GOLD at all of them. cool.gif

*Added March 2014-These areas DO NOT INCLUDE ANY CITY PARKS EAST OF TUNNEL #1 ON CLEAR CREEK OR ANY CITY PARKS ON THE SOUTH PLATTE RIVER.

CLEAR CREEK - WEST OF GOLDEN
JEFFERSON COUNTY OPEN SPACE

First we will talk about the Clear Creek/Hwy 6 area just west of Golden begining just above tunnel #1.
This area is all private land which has been donated or traded to Jefferson County open space and they "allow" panning and sluicing on the open space......they do not want motors on open space.
The only place not included in the open space is a private claim on BLM land the extends 1 mile upstream from Elk creek on Clear creek.......Steer clear of this private claim unless you have permission to be there.
WARNING-This area is all very steep and parking is limited. Traffic can also be very heavy at times, use extreme caution when in this area!!

FAIRPLAY'S TOWN BEACH - PARK COUNTY - $5 FEE
Second is a wonderful spot up a bit higher in elevation but the scenery is just awesome on the ride.........The Fairplay Beach.
Town of Fairplay website Click on "forms and permits".
You will need to aquire the $5 permit from the town office on front street or use the online printable form and send it in prior to your adventure. Once you have this permit you must have it with you while you pan/sluice at the beach.
Again this is privately owned by the town of Fairplay and they "allow" panning and sluicing here. Follow their rules and you will not have any problems. Gold here historically was just amazing and the beach is very close to what the old timers used to call the "GOLD SLIDE".


ARKANSAS RIVER RECREATIONAL AREA-CHAFFEE COUNTYiNCLUDING CACHE CREEK AND POINT BAR
Third we will be heading further south and across the divide to the arkansas river area.
There is alot of public land here that is withdrawn from mineral entry. This area is also a "recreational area" which has addtional rules for some activities. Panning or sluicing fortunately is not one of those....no permits needed here.
Even though this area has been withdrawn there are still a few claims to watch out for as well as many private parcels.
To know where these many private parcels are and claims in this area, you will need to have some info/maps to help you out on the sites to assure yourself of being on the open areas you are looking for. A good map to start with would be the BLM series of "Surface/Mineral Management Status-Gunnison map" from there you can then progress to more detailed maps and pinpointing.
There are many areas intertwined along the river heading upstream (northerly) from Hwy 24 along the next 10 miles of river or so.
Then further on down south on hwy 285 from the Hwy 24 intersection, at Helca Junction (11 miles or so), there is a large stretch of public land on the river extending approximately 1.5 miles downstream from the campground and approximately 4.5 miles upstream. Again use the above mentioned map to get started and pinpoint with more detailed info from there.

If you are interested in finding out how those "details" are obtained........You may wish to check over the CP club memberships at www.coloradoprospector.com and click "membership" to the left in green.
Our main goal is to learn as a collective so we all know as much as we can......We would love to have your families participation too. biggrin.gif
Thank you to all CP club members as their participation has brought you these free panning and sluicing areas to explore!! cool.gif

Enjoy your adventures!
The CP club
smile.gif

This post has been edited by ColoradoProspector: Mar 8 2014, 11:14 AM
Reason for edit: FAIRPLAY BEACH NO LONGER FREE - 2010


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jmann
post Jul 27 2007, 07:14 PM
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Thank you Dan and Denise for providing us with this fine club. Colorado Prospector is a very different kind of a club to belong to. They have claims that are owned by other members that let us mine on them. But the really BIG difference is all the areas that they have researched and are OPEN to mine on. So whats so BIG about that? Well that means that a heck of alot work has already been done for you. All that is left is for you to make a discovery and file your own claim. Thats right FILE YOUR OWN CLAIM. And yes it very much encouraged by Dan and Denise. So if you like diggn in beautiful Colorado this is the club to join. Joe
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ColoradoProspect...
post Aug 20 2007, 09:57 AM
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Thank you Joe, excellent post.
Many folks are going to be able to pan and sluice with this information over the years to come, and that is thanks to folks like Joe <------COOL DUDE! cool.gif
biggrin.gif
CP members are the coolest group!! cool.gif
OOOOOHHHHRAAAAAAAAAAAAA!!


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www.ColoradoProspector.com

IF YOU USE IT, THE GROUND PRODUCED IT!
MINERS MAKE "IT" HAPPEN!!



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/[__CP___CLUB__]--[_______]-‘[______]-‘[_______]
<`oo’------------ ‘OO’ -- ‘o’ ----- `o’ - ‘o’ -- ‘o’ -- ‘o‘ ---- ‘o’ --------------
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ColoradoProspect...
post Feb 15 2009, 04:28 PM
Post #4


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For those who are planning to get a free town permit for the Fairplay beach this year.........you will need to cross out the year and write in 2009 prior to sending in. Just got our permit for this year in case we wish to pan/sluice there or give any free lessons......got permit #1 for 2009 biggrin.gif Print your's off today and don't forget to change the year. Also don't forget to mention family members and friends on the permit who might be with your party.

CP


--------------------
CP-Owner/Administrator
www.ColoradoProspector.com

IF YOU USE IT, THE GROUND PRODUCED IT!
MINERS MAKE "IT" HAPPEN!!



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(;;;;;;;;;;;))...[........]__ . ,ooooooo, [*^*^*^*^] . [*^*^*^*^]
/[__CP___CLUB__]--[_______]-‘[______]-‘[_______]
<`oo’------------ ‘OO’ -- ‘o’ ----- `o’ - ‘o’ -- ‘o’ -- ‘o‘ ---- ‘o’ --------------
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RichDColorado
post May 3 2009, 08:57 PM
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Hi - I have a question about the Clear Creek open space. I've panned in a couple places along the creek with very little luck - of course, that's all relative depending on what one expects. But I don't think I've found more than half a dozen small, tiny, itty-bitty grain of sand sized specks after going through 5 5 gallon buckets concentrated through a 1/10" screen. This is a new hobby to me, but I think I'm doing a pretty good job of concentrating down, sluicing and panning through the diggings with a loupe. I'm getting some black sand, but almost no color. My father-in-law has a gold panning machine - has a rotating blue wheel, flushes water over, like an Archimede's screw - I'm sure you folks know they kind I mean (maybe a Desert Fox?), and still nothing shows. Do you know if that area has been worked to death or are there some decent spots to try? Also, what about the places above the traffic light on the way to Blackhawk? Is that still open area and any good places to try along that part of the stream? I don't mind getting out and digging - in fact, I really like being on the water as it's very relaxing, but I'd sure like to have something to show for the effort.

Thanks - Rich
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Chet
post May 17 2009, 12:05 AM
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QUOTE (RichDColorado @ May 3 2009, 09:57 PM) *
Hi - I have a question about the Clear Creek open space. Also, what about the places above the traffic light on the way to Blackhawk? Is that still open area and any good places to try along that part of the stream?


I, too, am curious what anyone knows abut the area past the intersection. That's right where you go from Jefferson to Gilpin County. I know you can dig below the intersection, but... I have a terrible time figuring out where else is a go/no-go section. Any help would be MUCH appreciated! worthy.gif
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sharry
post Aug 21 2009, 02:22 PM
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QUOTE (ColoradoProspector @ Jul 26 2007, 01:22 PM) *
Hello everyone,

Many folks inquire about free places to pan or sluice, so we thought we would post some free areas around Colorado that anyone can go to anytime they wish.
These are places where you are either "allowed", or given permission to pan/sluice on private (patented) land or it's public land withdrawn from mineral entry (unclaimable) which we can all still prospect with our pans and sluices.
All 3 are historically known as gold bearing areas and chances are very good you WILL FIND GOLD at all of them. cool.gif

CLEAR CREEK - WEST OF GOLDEN
JEFFERSON COUNTY OPEN SPACE

First we will talk about the Clear Creek/Hwy 6 area just west of Golden begining just above tunnel #1.
This area is all private land which has been donated or traded to Jefferson County open space and they "allow" panning and sluicing on the open space......they do not want motors on open space.
The only place not included in the open space is a private claim on BLM land the extends 1 mile upstream from Elk creek on Clear creek.......Steer clear of this private claim unless you have permission to be there.
WARNING-This area is all very steep and parking is limited. Traffic can also be very heavy at times, use extreme caution when in this area!!

FAIRPLAY'S TOWN BEACH - PARK COUNTY
Second is a wonderful spot up a bit higher in elevation but the scenery is just awesome on the ride.........The Fairplay Beach.
Town of Fairplay website Click on "forms and permits".
You will need to aquire the free permit from the town office on front street or use the online printable form and send it in prior to your adventure. Once you have this permit you must have it with you while you pan/sluice at the beach.
Again this is privately owned by the town of Fairplay and they "allow" panning and sluicing here. Follow their rules and you will not have any problems. Gold here historically was just amazing and the beach is very close to what the old timers used to call the "GOLD SLIDE".


ARKANSAS RIVER AREA-CHAFFEE COUNTY
Third we will be heading further south and across the divide to the arkansas river area.
There is alot of public land here that is withdrawn from mineral entry. This area is also a "recreational area" which has addtional rules for some activities. Panning or sluicing fortunately is not one of those....no permits needed here.
Even though this area has been withdrawn there are still a few claims to watch out for as well as many private parcels.
To know where these many private parcels are and claims in this area, you will need to have some info/maps to help you out on the sites to assure yourself of being on the open areas you are looking for. A good map to start with would be the BLM series of "Surface/Mineral Management Status-Gunnison map" from there you can then progress to more detailed maps and pinpointing.
There are many areas intertwined along the river heading upstream (northerly) from Hwy 24 along the next 10 miles of river or so.
Then further on down south on hwy 285 from the Hwy 24 intersection, at Helca Junction (11 miles or so), there is a large stretch of public land on the river extending approximately 1.5 miles downstream from the campground and approximately 4.5 miles upstream. Again use the above mentioned map to get started and pinpoint with more detailed info from there.

If you are interested in finding out how those "details" are obtained........You may wish to check over the CP club memberships at www.coloradoprospector.com and click "membership" to the left in green.
Our main goal is to learn as a collective so we all know as much as we can......We would love to have your families participation too. biggrin.gif
Thank you to all CP club members as their participation has brought you these free panning and sluicing areas to explore!! cool.gif

Enjoy your adventures!
The CP club
smile.gif

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Coalbunny
post Sep 21 2009, 04:44 AM
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QUOTE (RichDColorado @ May 3 2009, 07:57 PM) *
Hi - I have a question about the Clear Creek open space. I've panned in a couple places along the creek with very little luck - of course, that's all relative depending on what one expects. But I don't think I've found more than half a dozen small, tiny, itty-bitty grain of sand sized specks after going through 5 5 gallon buckets concentrated through a 1/10" screen. This is a new hobby to me, but I think I'm doing a pretty good job of concentrating down, sluicing and panning through the diggings with a loupe. I'm getting some black sand, but almost no color. My father-in-law has a gold panning machine - has a rotating blue wheel, flushes water over, like an Archimede's screw - I'm sure you folks know they kind I mean (maybe a Desert Fox?), and still nothing shows. Do you know if that area has been worked to death or are there some decent spots to try? Also, what about the places above the traffic light on the way to Blackhawk? Is that still open area and any good places to try along that part of the stream? I don't mind getting out and digging - in fact, I really like being on the water as it's very relaxing, but I'd sure like to have something to show for the effort.

Thanks - Rich

Rich, PM me sometime if you want to go hit Clear Creek. I've always found color, though not in every pan, every time I've gone. If the Open Space area is where I think it is, I know a few decent places to hit.
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Forestwalker
post Jan 26 2010, 12:15 PM
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I hit clear creek once, got loads of fine gold. Gold in every pan where I set up. Ran 6 gallons through the sluice then got cold and left with as much gold as I got in 30 gallons in the ammonosuc mining district in NH. I also found some silvery heavies.

Are there places above the split where i can sluice? I want to test the north fork but don't know where i would be ok going. I know about the claim upstream from elk creek for 1 mile but above that I cant seem to figure out, is it open space or federal or private?


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ColoradoProspect...
post Jan 27 2010, 09:05 AM
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Cool Forestwalker sounds like you had a great day out panning on Clear creek. signs026.gif

Where North Clear creek splits off going upstream is where Gilpin county begins and nearly all of the land from there to Blackhawk is private holdings. You were in the best place being down stream from there as that is in Jefferson county's open space and they do allow panning and sluicing as posted above.
Except for that single claim at Elk creek and going up stream from there for a mile.
That claim is BLM land that somehow through history ended up completely surrounded by private land. It's not patented but it was a valid location claim last time I checked on it.

Just one of those strange instances where public land is surrounded by private or vice versa......it does happen here and there.

Hope this info helps and good luck prospecting.

CP


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(;;;;;;;;;;;))...[........]__ . ,ooooooo, [*^*^*^*^] . [*^*^*^*^]
/[__CP___CLUB__]--[_______]-‘[______]-‘[_______]
<`oo’------------ ‘OO’ -- ‘o’ ----- `o’ - ‘o’ -- ‘o’ -- ‘o‘ ---- ‘o’ --------------
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Greg Sellers
post Feb 10 2010, 03:28 AM
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Fairplay beach is now $5 for a permit 2010...dang economy.

http://www.fairplayco.us/forms/GoldPanningPermit2010.pdf
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russau
post Feb 10 2010, 06:21 AM
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$5. isnt any big deal.
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Forestwalker
post Mar 11 2010, 09:53 AM
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Being new to the area, I need to ask. When do the rivers here get clear of ice? I'm itching to get out again, mostly clear creek.


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ColoradoProspect...
post Mar 11 2010, 10:46 AM
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Watch those sunny spots as there will be some opening up soon I'm sure. thumbsupsmileyanim.gif Once the ice breaks up and is mostly gone at the lower elevations, then the upper areas melt will be contributing as well and flow levels will be on the rise.
Have fun and good luck out there everyone! Stay safe. happy088.gif




--------------------
CP-Owner/Administrator
www.ColoradoProspector.com

IF YOU USE IT, THE GROUND PRODUCED IT!
MINERS MAKE "IT" HAPPEN!!



__[]''''''''________
(;;;;;;;;;;;))...[........]__ . ,ooooooo, [*^*^*^*^] . [*^*^*^*^]
/[__CP___CLUB__]--[_______]-‘[______]-‘[_______]
<`oo’------------ ‘OO’ -- ‘o’ ----- `o’ - ‘o’ -- ‘o’ -- ‘o‘ ---- ‘o’ --------------
#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#``````#````#
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Coalbunny
post Apr 21 2011, 01:21 AM
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Updated-

http://www.fairplayco.us/forms/GoldPanningPermit2011.pdf
http://www.fairplayco.us/forms/Fairplay_Be...Application.pdf
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