Relive the gold rush days of Queensland's early history with a trip to a gold fossicking area. Who knows – you may just strike it rich.
The Department of Mines and Energy (DME) has designated several gold fossicking areas throughout the state. In south east Queensland, these regions are located near Gympie and Warwick. Potential gold hunters will require a Fossickers License before they can start digging. These can be obtained from the DME office in Brisbane or the Shire Council office in the appropriate town.
Deep Creek, Gympie
The discovery of gold in a gully near Mary River in 1897, lead to the first gold rush in Queensland and the formation of the town of Gympie. More than 100 years later, visitors can continue the search for gold at the Deep Creek Fossicking Area.
Deep Creek, located south of Gympie, is a designated gold fossicking area. Alluvium chips of gold are most likely to be found on the banks of the creek and in the inside of the bends. Panning is the simplest way to find gold; visitors may also use hand tools (like metal detectors) but no machinery of any kind.
The land surrounding the Deep Creek Fossicking Area is private property, so gold prospectors are urged to stay within the yellow metal posts that mark out the area.
Thanes Creek, Warwick In the late nineteenth century, Warwick supported more than half a dozen gold mining fields. Today, the Thanes Creek bed is a geological delight.
The creek bed, which is nearly completely dry, especially during the hot months, contains colours of gold in the rock sediment as well as ancient rocks and stones. Here, you will find slate, jasper, sandstone and limestone that date from the Devonian to the Carboniferous eras. Visitors can find these elements by using pans, tools or even their hands. However machinery is prohibited.
Camping is prohibited on both sites, but overnight accommodation can easily be found in the nearby towns of Gympie and Warwick.