Western Mining Alliance


Prospecting maps

Here are some useful maps. If you're looking for gold, our gold location map provides you with nearly 80,000 locations n the US where gold has been found. If you're on the East Coast areas on that coast are included. The gold map is what's called a "heat map" it allows you to see concentrations of gold, yellow color indicates a high concentration. It's pretty easy to spot the California motherlode on this map. Zoom in and click on the individual locations for more information. You can also click on, or off, the other layers for clarity.

Fire Tracking

Best map we've found for real time tracking of wildfires. Covers the whole U.S. and uses thermal imaging from satellites to show you exactly what's burning.

Historical Faults

Gold deposits follow faults. If you're looking for the source of gold, hardrock, then this fault map provides you with the locations of historical (not active) fault zones for the U.S.

Nevada and Arizona Gold Locations

This interactive map provides the location of mineral zones for gold and gemstones including diamonds, rubies, emeralds and jade. We have the information for the entire country, including California, but when we add California the total points mapped exceeds 80,000 so we had to trim it down to only a few states. We've also included Alaska on this map if you're thinking about heading north. Includes the east coast.

California claim density

Want to know where people prospect and mine in California? This is an extremely useful map for identifying the "hot zones." For quarter sections marked with a red square there are 4 or more active mining claims. If you see an area in red you should be especially careful when either filing a claim, or buying a claim. If you click on the red square it will tell you how many active claims are within that quarter section.

Port Wine Ridge, Sierra County, 1924 Mines

This is a single page PDF map of the Port Wine Ridge Area

Prepared in 1924 this map shows the historical claims. Most of these claims were hydraulic or drift operations. This is a great map for research on the Port Wine Ridge.

Library of Congress Historical Gold Rush maps

Library of Congress maps of the California Gold Rush

A collection of historical maps available for download.

Where to find gold in California

This map provides the active and historic lode claim locations for California. It is represented as a heat map with yellow being very high concentrations of mining claims. To produce this map we used over 320,000 data points and 60 years of claim filings. This is the first time we've mapped the entire state of California and the gold trends, for lode, become very obvious. If you're wondering about placer...we'll just dip a pan about anywhere there's a lode concentration and you're going to find gold. What we found mapping placer was that a vast majority of old placers are located on the channel meaning you're never going to mine it, but mapping the historic placers does provide a well defined presentation of the tertiary channels.

Wilderness and Critical Habitat

If you're thinking about looking for new mining areas then you should bookmark this map. Wilderness areas are generally withdrawn from mineral entry meaning you can't file a new claim there. If your claim is in a critical habitat area then obtaining a permit would be very difficult (if not impossible). Under California dredging regulations no dredging is allowed in critical habitat, so know whether the area you are in has critical habitat - it's important.

Laporte CA Tertiary Valleys

This is a single page PDF which shows the tertiary areas near Laporte CA

If you're interested in the Laporte area this is a good resource map for locating the tertiary areas. It covers the area from Honey Lake in the east to Laporte in the west. From Quincy in the north to the Eureka Diggins in the south.

BLM Official Land Records

If you're researching claims then you must use this site.

Whether you're trying to find your own claim, looking to buy a claim, or wanting to sell a claim you'd better check Glo Records first. We don't know how many times we've seen Milsap Bar claimed, only to be dropped the following years. Glo Records gives you the legal land status of the area. Many areas are withdrawn from mineral location, such as the Milsap Bar area on the Middle Fork of the Feather. But, did you also know in certain areas the land is sub-divided into "plots"? In areas with old townsites, you encounter legal land subdivisions where the description is given as a plot. When describing the location you must use the plot designation. Be wise, check BLM Glo Records first.