Pan for Gold in Your Kitchen


We take pride in exposing our kids to a wealth of learning activities and information, and have done so for their entire lives.  A little over five years ago we took a winter vacation to the Wisconsin Dells for some swimming and general ‘get out of the cold’ fun.  One afternoon we browsed the open stores downtown and came across a small store that sold rocks & gems.  They offered a fun treat – the ability to ‘pan’ your own gems out of a bucket of sand.

Panning for goldThe excitement of finding their own ‘gem’ out of a bunch of dirt is something they still remember to this day.

ExcitedNow that they’re older, they have gravitated away from watching cartoons on TV to some of the more reality-based shows.  Along with Pawn Stars and American Pickers, one of their favorites is Gold Rush, which features different teams of people hunting for gold in Alaska.  They were fascinated by the amount of work necessary to pull such small amounts of gold flakes out of the ground, and I believe developed a new respect for the rarity of the metal.

But alas, we’re in Iowa, and the nearest place to dig for your own gold is over 1,000 miles away. Fortunately we were sent a new product to try out that fits this bill perfectly!  A complete panning kit!  Even better, it is branded by the Discovery Channel and Gold Rush!

Gold Rush Panning Kit

Everything we need to recreate the experience at home.  Included are a pan, storage vial, snuffer bottle and a 1lb. bag of “pay dirt”! Registering on their site takes you to a good video showing you how to pan.

Watching the video

We followed the instruction to a “T”, got down to the black sand and sure enough, we could see tiny specks of gold glittering back at us.

Gold Rush Black Sand

The camera really can’t pick them up well, but they’re there.  Not flakes, but tiny dust-like particles that definitely glitter back at you when the light hits them just right.  Our inexperienced hands weren’t able to retrieve them (this time) into the vial, but we set aside the dirt for trying again later.

I should note that since we have two kids, we divided the dirt into two lots so the above reflects only half of what you receive.

If you’re huge fans of the show, be sure to follow Gold Rush on Twitter!  Here’s a quick list of their individual accounts:

Parker Schnabel
Freddy Dodge
Dakota Fred
Rick Ness
Greg Remsburg
and of course Todd Hoffman

And of course don’t forget to ‘Like’ their page on Facebook.  Want to try to strike it rich on your own?  Grab one for yourself on Amazon or at the Discovery Store.

20 thoughts on “Pan for Gold in Your Kitchen

  1. My son loves this show so I bet he would really get a kick out of panning for gold! Last week we tweeted with Gold Rush during the show and they tweeted us back several times. My 9 year old really got a kick out of that!

  2. My husband and I actually really enjoy panning for gold. We’ve visited a gold camp with our teens and found it an incredible way to relax and spend an afternoon. Of course, it would have been more incredible to actually find a gold nugget but maybe that will come…

  3. My husband watches Gold Rush and the Bering Sea show (can’t remember the name). He keeps saying that he would like to go and pan for gold. I ought to surprise him one day with one of these kits.

  4. This is so cool! My kids would totally love this experiment. They love to go rock hunting so this would be even more fun. Thanks for sharing!

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