Gold Mines in California

Gold Mining Claims for Sale in California

Depending on the year, we typically head down to California in the fall, winter and spring months to claim California gold mines, which means the best chance of getting a mine in California is early winter through late spring.

If we currently don’t have any gold mines in California feel free to check out our other mines in the Western United States. If you would like to receive updates on our new mining claims we invite you to sign up for our weekly newsletter.

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When most people think of gold rushes, they think of the California Gold Rush. The Gold Rush of 1848 started when James W. Marshall found gold at Sutter’s Mill in Coloma, California. Prospectors began flooding the state by the thousands. The Gold Rush lasted 7 years and brought 300,000 people to California. The impact of the Gold Rush was substantial. San Francisco grew from a small settlement of about 200 residents to a boom-town of about 36,000 by 1852. The Gold Rush paved the way for California to become a state. Gold, worth billions of dollars in today’s money was recovered from California during the great Gold Rush.

Current Mining Claims in the Western United States






New Mexico




How Gold Formed in California

The gold deposits that are presently found in California are the work of millions of years of  plate tectonics. Millions of years ago pieces of what is presently know as California lay at the bottom of the ocean. Underwater volcanoes deposited lava which contained minerals (including gold) onto the sea floor. Between 400 million and 200 million years ago, geologic movement forced the sea floor eastwards, colliding with the North American continent, which was moving westwards.

Beginning about 200 million years ago, tectonic pressure forced the sea floor beneath the American continental mass. As it sank beneath today’s California, the sea floor heated and melted into very large molten masses (magma). This magma was hotter than the continental crust above it, and consequently forced its way upward, cooling as it rose to become the granite rock found throughout the Sierra Nevada and other mountains in California today — such as the walls and domes of Yosemite Valley. As the hot magma cooled, solidified, and came in contact with water, minerals with similar melting temperatures tended to concentrate themselves together. As it solidified, gold became concentrated within the magma, and during this cooling process, veins of gold formed within fields of quartz because of the similar melting temperatures of both.

Learn More

Learn more about gold ore and mining for gold in our education center – Mining 101 – where we cover a wide range of topics ranging from where to find gold to working your mine.