Idaho was a massive gold rush state. There are dozens of abandoned or lightly inhabited old towns from when mining was the thing to do in the gem state. Our vast waterways give endless options for panning for gold and gemstones. While heaps of gold and mountains of gemstones have been removed, sold off and taken from the state there is still a lot more to be claimed.

According to the United States Bureau of Mines, "Idaho has more gold than any other state with tons still out there. There are hot gold and gem stone spots all over the state from the northern panhandle to central Idaho to the south. There is still gold being found constantly all over."

Travel Tips from USA Today dove pretty deep and does a great job of breaking down the best areas to pan for gold in Idaho.

Up north: "The Silver Valley in the Idaho panhandle has one of the richest mineral deposits in the world."

Central to Southern Idaho along the Snake, "Millions of dollars in gold remain in the sands and gravel around the Snake River.

"The Boise Basin gold strike in 1862 was the big one in Idaho, fostering remote towns such as Pioneerville, Placerville, Centerville and Idaho City."

Silver Recyclers also highlight some top spots in Idaho for finding gold in rivers saying, "The Clearwater River, located in Clearwater County and the city of Pierce was the site of Idaho's first gold discovery back in 1860."

"The Salmon River runs through the Idaho cities of Salmon and Challis and has been the scene of more than a few large-scale dredging operations, but it's also a popular spot among recreational panners."

"It's believed that a lot of gold still flow through the Idaho stretch of the Snake River, especially in the area around American Falls."

Don't quit your day job just yet but if you love Idaho, the outdoor and adventure you should try Gold Panning. You may be pleasantly surprised by what you find in the rivers of Idaho.

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