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Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:06 am
by oregon101
Hello, I am in Portland Oregon - Native. I have a family and work in high tech. I am very new to all things gold mining/panning. I am not up to speed on the EPA and BLM rules, permits etc. I would like to pan for gold along the Sandy and Clackamas river. Is there anyone I can talk to or go out for coffee and maybe a beer? Thanks for this forum...looking forward to AU ;)

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:11 am
by Jim_Alaska
We are a prospecting Club in Happy Camp California.

You do not need permits to pan for gold from any agency.

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:26 am
by Mythicalminer
Sorry you are in Portland... but won't hold it against you!
As far as "panning" in Oregon goes, no permit is needed, and you can pan anytime of the year. However, DEQ says you are not allowed to pan material taken from onshore in an active waterway, as doing so "adds" material to the water.
You can pan material taken from the water in the water.
You can pan material taken from onshore in a tub, or puddle.
You can use a sluicebox instream, but only if the material came from the water.

Good luck!

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Tue Jan 08, 2019 12:34 am
by Mythicalminer
oopps, forgot to add....
Oregon DEQ says you need a "600" permit for processing material onshore (i.e.; panning in a tub). The permit used to be free.... however, Governor Brown stopped the funding for these permits so new ones are not available at this time.

Also, the Oregon Water Board says you need a Water Right to take water from a stream to fill your tub (or to take ANY water from a stream.... but also says no one would enforce this. This raises the question of how a camper is supposed to drench a campfire if a water right is required to take water....)

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Sun Jan 13, 2019 7:53 pm
by oregon101
Thank you Jim and Mythicalminer for the information. Yes I grew up in Boring Oregon, but now work in the Pearl district. Nothing really good about Portland except the food. The information you have provided is very much appreciated. I was afraid the DEQ / Water board had really messed the ability to even own a stream. Very sad. I have sent in my application to join the NWMPC to help with all of the information and to get started. Thanks again.

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Wed Jan 16, 2019 1:16 am
by mendoAu
........and don't forget to send a letter to the governor about her inability to support us local miners. Altho she is probably eating that good portland food and doesn't give a rats ass about us.
If you want to travel way south down to the Grants Pass area for a couple of days I can hook you up with sixty acres of creek for you to pan at your leisure. All "off limit" federal mining sites should be sign, good to go.

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Thu Jan 17, 2019 2:52 am
by oregon101
@mendoAu, thank you for the invite I will look into that maybe for the summer etc. BTW I was watching on youtube some folks who were panning and sluicing in Brice Creek. They were really digging etc. What is allowed in the open creeks and streams? Am I allowed to move dirt, rocks and place a sluice in the rivers and start digging? thanks again

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:01 am
by Mythicalminer
Generally speaking, in Oregon:

You ARE allowed to dig, (move rocks, etc.) material that is underwater at the time you are digging... and pan or sluice that material in the same stream. IF you are in a stream not closed by SB 3 to motorized mining then you may also dredge, powersluice, etc. (with now $500 permit).

Generally speaking, you are NOT allowed to dig into the banks from the water (by hand or with dredge). (Yes, I know, the claimowner owns ALL the minerals on the claim, which should include deposits in the bank(s) at the water's edge... ). As I understand agency intent (state of fed), they will allow working in the water... or far enough away so you do not effect the water or de-stabilize the bank.

Material coming from onshore deposits can not be processed in a live stream, supposedly including panning material from onshore (i.e.; above the ordinary high water mark - generally meaning if there are plants growing you are above ordinary high water line and considered "onshore")). This would be the "addition" of a supposed pollutant to the waters. Mining onshore is allowed, but all tailings and water must be kept from entering a nearby stream through use of holding ponds, seepage area, etc.. Problem here is Oregon DEQ has quit issuing new 600 permits (needed for discharge on shore) as the Governor has refused to fund the permitting.... only those with Grandfathered 600 permits can still work (i.e.; with a permit).

BTW: The earlier SB 838 put a moratorium on all motorized in-stream and all upland mining within 300 feet of a ESH stream. SB 3 totally repealed SB 838 and SB 3 ONLY effects motorized "in-stream" placer mining.

Hope this helps... or at least clarifies what Oregon may or may not let you do.

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Wed Jan 30, 2019 7:59 pm
by kvertner
Thanks to everyone for the valuable info...especially you Mythicalminer. I'm in Newport Oregon, and there are a few creeks south of me that I wanted to check out. I'm also close enough to get out on the Umpqua to check out the New 49'rs claims on Days and Deadman's creek. (Any idea if any members have spent time on those claims?)

We head down to Happy Camp once a year...which isn't enough time! So we are looking to do more around Oregon.

So do you think the safest bet is to pan into a tub until you find some pay...then fill buckets with classified material, and take them home to process? I don't want to get in trouble with anyone...especially don't want to give the club any bad attention. But I want to get out there and enjoy this hobby.

Re: Hello from Oregon here

Posted: Thu Jan 31, 2019 1:07 am
by Mythicalminer
kvertner: I highly doubt anyone will bother you if all you are doing is panning. You CAN pan in the live stream IF the material came from the stream (i.e.; from underwater). IF you are panning material from shore, then DEQ wants you to pan in a tub or puddle (but not in the live stream). DEQ is telling people they need the WPFC 600 permit for processing material on shore.... but they aren't issuing those permits. Myself, I would just go ahead and pan in a tub as about the most they will do if caught is tell you to stop. Play dumb....

Keep in mind that Oregon does not have the $$ to have panning inspectors out roaming the gold areas... highly unlikely anyone will bother you. If possible, stay out of sight (out of mind). Good luck!