Large 7.5 ounce California gold nugget

Getting Started By Joining A Prospecting Club

8 ounces of large Alaska gold nuggets

Are you interested in getting started in prospecting for gold?  Joining a club is an idea that has a lot to offer......

If you are new to prospecting for gold and just getting started, I have some suggestions for you. This is a great recreational pastime, and with some sincere effort, you will learn what you need to know and soon be out there digging some nice gold of your own.  

First off, I'd suggest you join a prospecting club like GPAA (Gold Prospectors Association of America) or one of the other well-known regional/local clubs. Being part of a club that owns their own claims will give you access to places to prospect and a chance to talk about local places to look, regulations and what really works to get gold in your neck of the woods. These things are all really important to the new prospector trying to learn the ropes. It will also give you a chance to meet some folks with more experience in prospecting for gold. Attend the group outings and hang around with some of those more experienced guys. Most will willingly share information about how to find gold, and how they have found gold in the past. The friendships you will gain are worth far more than the cost of the membership dues. Even many experienced prospectors are members of more than one club, because of the friendships and prospecting opportunities they present.

For those you who have never prospected before, and have never found any of their own gold in the wild, I’d suggest starting small by purchasing a gold pan and some basic digging tools. Start out slow and let your equipment inventory grow with your experience. Spend some time in the field and learn some of the basic skills and techniques of prospecting for gold first. Then once you have the confidence that you can succeed in finding gold, consider bigger prospecting equipment like a detector or a dredge. The experience you gain learning how and where to find gold will help you later when you decide to buy that expensive equipment. You don’t need to wait forever, but don’t get overly excited and rush things either. If you really have the gold fever, you’ll be genuinely thrilled even by those first few colors in your pan that you found yourself in the wilds by your own skill (trust me, I know).

Another suggestion is to buy some books on prospecting and read them carefully – you can learn from books, too, although just like old timers, some books are more worthwhile to listen to than others! You can even ask the more experienced guys for their recommendations on books – maybe they will even loan you a few. Books generally fall into 2 categories: 1) How to prospect; and 2) Where to prospect. I actually have a list of books I recommend myself, here is a link to:
Chris' Recommended Prospecting Books

I'm actually the associate editor for a well known Gold Prospecting Magazine. The magazine has lots of good information, so check out their website for more information and my latest articles.

There is a lot to learn about finding gold and its unlikely you will strike it rich right off the bat. Be patient and stick with it - the gold nuggets are still out there and your finds will come in time. Dogged persistence is an important asset for prospectors – especially those just getting started.
For your convenience, I have assembled a listing of links to prospecting clubs across the United States.  There are FAR more clubs than the few listed here. This is just a selection for you to start with. Further research will show what clubs exist in your area, if your area is not listed in any of these links.

Local Chapters of the GPAA (Gold Prospectors Association of America - Nationwide, USA)

24K Gold Hunters Club (Rich Hill, Wickenburg, Arizona)

Havasu Gold Seekers (Lake Havasu Area, Arizona)

Roadrunners Prospectors Club (Arizona)

Gold Searchers of Southern Nevada (Southern Nevada)

Comstock Gold Prospectors (Northern Nevada, Mother Lode in Calif.)

Golden Caribou Mining Assn. (Northern Mother Lode Country)

Mother Lode Gold Hounds (Mother Lode Country, California)

New 49ers Prospecting Club (Klamath River Area, California)

West End Prospectors Club (California)

If the links above do not provide what you are looking for, start your research at the link below:
Many Additional Clubs and further information can be found at this site:



Want to know a little bit more about this crazy prospector guy? Well, here's a little bit more about me, and how I got into prospecting: Chris' Prospecting Story   Interested in seeing more gold? Here are some interesting photos of beautiful  Gold Nuggets 

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Find out more by checking out all of our links below:
Learn The Basics of Placer Mining for Gold Locations to Prospect for Gold for Free
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Chris' Adventures Prospecting for Gold, Silver, and more Investing In Gold and Precious Metals
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Nevada Outback Library and Bookstore - Learn more! Prospecting In Arizona Prospecting In Alaska
Natural Gold Nugget Photos: Big Nuggets, Crystal Gold Recovering Gold From Black Sand Metal Detecting For Gold Nuggets
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