Gold Districts in Madera County
Coarsegold (Madera County)
Coarsegold has a placer and lode gold region. The placer gold in this area is coarse (hence the name) and heavy and it is not very deep. The placers were first worked on in 1850 and the veins were then discovered three years later in 1853. There were also a few gold quartz veins that had free gold that were worked on in this area as well. This area is located off Highway 41 and is near the actual town of Coarsegold.
The Fresno River runs through the city of Madera and some people have claimed to have done well dredging in the lower Fresno River area. The placers in this area were once worked in this area during the gold rush.
Grub Gulch was a community that does not exist anymore. All that can be found is an old cemetery. This was located around seven miles north of the actual town of Oakhurst on Highway 41.
The Gambetta mine, which is also known as the Arkansas Traveler, was the first and richest mine around the Grub Gulch region. This place was known to have a lot of hold ups in one day alone. A single bandit held up three stages, two wagons and a couple men and was not caught. It was first discovered in 1880 and it brought in $490,000 in ore prior to being deserted in 1904. Josephine, which was located near it, was worked on in the 1880’s and it produced $360,000 in gold. Another place that was located near by was the Mammouth (known as Woodland or Starlight). One of the foremen at this mine, Charles Wood, was not only a fine miner, but along with a partner was able to become well off by promoting the mines.
Hildreth was a little mining town in the area of Hildreth Mountain. A great deal of the production in this area occurred between 1860 and 1890. The leading mine was called Mud Springs and it produced $250,000. At the present time there is a semi-active tungsten mine here.
Some gold has been taken from Quartz Mountain, however most of this activity occurred during the days of the gold rush.
The word Mariposa is the Spanish work for butterfly, why this county is called Mariposa is something unknown however gold can certainly be found here.
Mariposa County is in California and located in the western foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. It lies north of Fresno, east of Merced, and southeast of Stockton. The county's eastern half is the central portion of Yosemite National Park.
Maxwell Creek, which is in Mariposa, is known as one of the best places for gold panning in the Mother Lode for panners who are interested in finding gold. Maxwell Creek is located in the town of Coulterville and it seems that this creek just continues to produce gold as the years go by. A good amount of gold flour can be found here and some people have run into some good sized nuggets. This activity can be done on the side of the highway 49 as a good number of people have done pretty well for themselves working between the highway and the bridge. The only things you will have to keep an eye out for are the mosquitoes in this area specifically in the summer months.
Something else you might be interested in checking into are the museums Mariposa has. One of these museums is located in the city of Mariposa and is called the History Center. You can get to the History Center museum by taking 13 street west off of highway 49.
The other museum people might find interesting to look into is located in Mormon Bar which is around two miles south of the town of Mariposa on highway 49. The interesting thing about this museum is that it is a Mining and Mineral Exhibit and a dream for all those prospectors that love prospecting. Obviously you can’t mine here….just in case.