River Gold panning Sweden

Gold Panning in Sweden

You can find Gold in Sweden, just as you can find Gold next to anywhere on our planet. The big difference between areas is how Gold has accumulated in the ground. It is fascinating thinking that Gold can only arise under extreme conditions, which are not on earth today, but Gold is created in stars. Therefore, all the Gold found on the surface has come here while the universe was created several billion years ago.

Power and wealth

The shining Gold has fascinated people since ancient times. Gold has been unique from the beginning of time, and the person who owned Gold was thereby also a special person. Gold symbolized power, wealth and status. Gold and other precious metals have always been the most important means of payment throughout history.

160,000 tons of Gold


Since people first started searching for Gold, and until 2010, about 160,000 tons of Gold were excavated. Approximately one-third of this Gold is used for jewellery. Central banks own one third in the form of bars. Industrial purposes use about 10%, and the other 20% belongs to private investors. Although Gold is straightforward to work with, it is almost indestructible. When other metals get destroyed by being buried in the ground for a few thousand years, Gold comes up with the same brilliance and lustre as newly worked.

Equipment for gold panning▶

Places for Gold panning in Sweden

When looking for Gold in Sweden, it is above all the panning with the gold pan that is of interest to private individuals. There is Gold in many places, and there are large areas that are entirely unexplored when it comes to precious metals and Gold panning. The areas that have been examined by panning are only a small part of Sweden. Panning for Gold is exciting and fun, and you will get a beautiful nature experience regardless you find Gold or not.

Gold panning Sweden collage

Where to find Gold?

Gold is, as we know, no abundant metal, so the resulting deposits are never significant. The thickness of the deposits is usually only a few millimetres. Several minerals occur more frequently with Gold, and these include quartz, copper, sulfur chisel, lead, magnetite, molybdenum.

Gold-bearing minerals

You can find Gold in many different rocks, but some are more interesting than others. The most gold-bearing stone is volcanite, and preferably acidic volcanite. Quartz sections in the mountains can be interesting to explore, ideally substantial quartz sections with different colours. Other places to explore are fault cracks and traces of geological activity in the area.

Gold is where you find it!

Old, dried out waterways are perfect places to start, where there may be areas of erosion material that contain Gold. The Gold is more massive than the surrounding minerals and is therefore continually sinking further and further down. But our mountains have undergone many changes through millions of years, so what was once a riverbed can today be a mountain peak.

One can still say that Gold is usually found near its original location. For hobby Gold panning, the natural choice of place is a creek or a river, where the water is not flowing too fast or is too deep.

Why look for Gold in or around water?

In water, physics and the law of gravity have accumulated the Gold in deposits, which means that there is greater opportunity to find it. This, and using water for the panning, shows that it’s in streams and rivers that you preferably look for Gold.

Gold panning Sweden streams and creeks 

There is no simple answer to where, in, e.g. a river you can find Gold, but there are places that are more likely than others. The Gold, which is denser than the surrounding sand and gravel, is streamed down with the water and accumulates in places where the water flow decrease in strength and the water becomes calmer. When it is not pushed forward by the water pressure, it sinks downwards and continues to fall through sand and soil until it lies against, e.g. the rock or in more compact clay.

Panning for Gold

The best, easiest and most popular method is to pan with a gold pan. First, you have to find a suitable stream, which starts or at least flows down from some mountain or hills.
Where the water flow then begins to decline, a bit down the slope, is an excellent place to start panning for Gold.

Natural Gold trap

Inside of a curve or behind a large rock are places where the water loses momentum, and the heavy material falls to the bottom. The top layer on the creek bottom is usually a bit coarser gravel and stone, which you can scrape away. Try to get down until it gets a little firmer, like clay or rock.

The material that lies against a firmer bottom is perfect for starting to pan. Scoop the fine gravel and sand into the pan and get started. To not get too big stones in the pan, pour the material through a classifier or a colander. Be sure to mash any clay lumps and rinse off the rocks in your pan. Now you can wash the fine gravel and sand.

Gold panning Sweden collage 2

Gold Panning technique

Panning for Gold is no secret or complicated procedure. It is based only on the fact that the massive gold drops to the bottom of the pan and thereby one can rinse away the other material.
Fill the pan with sand and gravel. Shake and rotate the pan so that the heavy material drops to the bottom. Now you can remove the slightly larger stones lying on top. Then you continue to shake the pan, back and forth and side to side.

Rinse the top layer of sand all the time from the pan. Eventually, you will only have the finest and heaviest material left. When you have a couple of tablespoons left, you have to watch out, so it doesn’t flow out of the pan. What remains now is the most massive material, probably mostly “black sand”. Getting a lot of “black sand” (Magnetite) in the pan is excellent, as it is heavier than regular sand. This means that you have found a place where heavier materials have sedimented.

Collage 3 Gold panning Sweden

Gold and black sand

Black sand” settles between sand and Gold. If you were lucky, you might already see some gold grains in the pan. Otherwise, gently rinse around the material in the pan and examine with a magnifying glass. If you want to investigate further at home, you can pour the last concentrate into a jar for storage. It is often easier to examine the sand at home when it has dried.

Is it Gold?

When you start to pan for Gold, you will find many minerals that at first glance, you think is Gold but which upon closer examination turns out to be something else. Minerals that are often mistaken for Gold is sulfate, pyrite and mica. Gold pulled against a clean piece of porcelain gives a gold-coloured line. The Gold is soft and does not break when squeezed. It usually has evenly round edges and shines with gold shine even in the shade. Gold is not magnetic apart from black sand.

Gold panning Sweden map

Facts about Gold

Gold is an element and thus consists only of Gold. The Latin name is “Aurum“, and therefore Gold has the chemical name, Au.
The atomic number is 79, and the atomic weight is 197.
Gold is a so-called precious metal, which means it does not oxidize or rust. It is also very resistant to acids. An acid that affects Gold is “king water” Regia, a mixture of nitric and hydrochloric acid.


🔸 The malleability is higher than that of any other metal. One gram of Gold can be forged into a 3,000 meter long string, and gold leaf can be made so thin that light can penetrate it.
🔸 It has a cubic crystal shape.
🔸 The melting point of Gold is 1063 degrees.
🔸 The purity of Gold is measured in carats, and pure Gold is 24 carats.
🔸 18 carat contains 75% gold and 12 carats 50% Gold.
🔸The specific weight is calculated against water having the weight 1, Stone 2.7, Iron 7.8, Lead 11 and Gold 19.3

Equipment for gold prospecting ▶

Interesting Gold links

Maps

http://www.sgu.se/

http://resource.sgu.se/produkter/broschyrer/guldletarkarta_4.pdf

Gold and other minerals

http://www.guldforum.se/forum/index.php

http://www.guldvaskarn.org/

http://www.vaskaguld.nu/

http://www.geonord.org/org/clubs/index.html