panning for gold

That one time I tried to find gold in Taiwan…

I’ve lived in Taiwan for about a decade, and for all of that time, I’ve been obsessed with buried treasure. It’s not that hard to imagine: Taiwan was once a base of pirates and trading companies. There were wars – and even a rumor of a huge cache of Japanese gold buried before they abandoned the island.

Plus, it has a couple of old gold mining towns up north (Jinguashi and Jiufen) that closed down 50 years ago (the alluvial deposits should have built up by now… or maybe they missed stuff with their old fashioned mining techniques).

However, digging for gold in Taiwan is hard work.


The ground is hard and rocky. Difficult to get a shovel in. Sometimes it took an hour to dig a foot deep, just to find some old scrap metal (lots of scrap in Taiwan). I also tried panning in the river – I wasn’t the only one, check out this YouTube video.

All I got was a sunburn and a lot of dirt under my fingernails, but it was a nice day on the river.

The gold is still up there though: this article says illegal miners have broken the seals of the old mines and carried off around 5million USD worth of gold in the past few years!

Read it here.

panning for gold

Yukon Gold Mining History

The Yukon has a rich history of gold mining and panning, including gold rushes and spooky old mining towns. I’ll keep researching and adding stories and info we collect about gold mining and great finds in the area.


metal detecting

Best metal detector to find gold nuggets in the Yukon

I was chatting with a friend tonight at the bar.

“I want to find gold,” I said. “I just don’t want to do any work.”

That’s what appeals to me about nugget shooting. Get up there to ground few shoes have tread, and if hit any metal… gold might be the cause. Just a little digging around the signal and you might have a nugget. Sure maybe they’re really small, but for the physical effort, it’s good pay.

For the time, it’s probably better to chew through a lot of ground more quickly. That would be fun to try as well, if we can rustle up funds for big equipment rental or of someone wants to partner.

But I still like the idea of just wandering through the landscape with a nice metal detector. I’m looking to buy a new one before we head up to YukonYouMineGold this summer.

What’s your favorite kind?