Highbanking FAQ

Q: What is a highbanker?

A: A highbanker is a portable wash plant for processing gold-bearing material that usually consists of a hopper, water supply, classifier screen and sluice box. Highbankers come in many sizes and configurations and it is recommended to choose a system based on your individual capabilities.

Q: What is highbanking?
A: Highbanking is a mining technique used to extract gold from riverbeds or streams. It involves the use of a highbanker with a water pump and typically involves digging by hand. 

Q: How does highbanking work?
A: Highbanking works by using the force of water to wash away dirt, gravel, and other materials, leaving behind heavier gold particles. The highbanker pumps water from the river or stream into the hopper, where the gold-bearing material is fed. The water flow and the classifier screen help separate the gold from the other materials, allowing it to flow down the sluice box and settle in the riffles or mats.

Q: Is highbanking legal?
A: The legality of highbanking varies depending on the location. It is important to check local regulations and obtain any necessary permits or licenses before engaging in highbanking. Some areas may have restrictions or require specific permits for mining activities.

Q: What equipment do I need for highbanking?
A: The main equipment needed for highbanking includes a highbanker, a water pump, hoses, a classifier screen, and a shovel. Additionally, you may need a gold pan, buckets, and other tools for collecting and processing the material.

Q: Where can I highbank?
A: Highbanking can be done in rivers, streams, or other water bodies where gold deposits are present. It is essential to research and identify areas known for gold deposits or consult with local mining authorities to find suitable locations for highbanking.

Q: How much gold can I expect to find through highbanking?
A: The amount of gold you can find through highbanking depends on various factors, including the location, the quality of the gold-bearing material, and your mining skills. It is important to have realistic expectations and understand that gold recovery can vary significantly, even within a single area.

Q: Are there any environmental concerns with highbanking?
A: Highbanking, like any mining activity, can have environmental impacts. It is crucial to practice responsible mining techniques, such as minimizing sediment runoff, avoiding damage to vegetation and wildlife habitats. Following local regulations and guidelines can help mitigate environmental concerns.

Q: Can I highbank on public lands?
A: The rules regarding highbanking on public lands vary depending on the jurisdiction. In some cases, highbanking may be allowed with certain restrictions or permits, while in other areas, it may be prohibited. It is essential to check with the relevant land management agencies or mining authorities to understand the regulations for highbanking on public lands.

Q: Do I need a gold claim to highbank?
A: Some jurisdictions restrict highbanking only to active gold claims while others allow small-scale highbanking for recreation with and without permits. It is recommended to join local gold mining or panning groups to learn what restrictions might be applicable.

Q: Can I make a profit from highbanking?
A: Making a profit from highbanking depends on various factors, including the amount and quality of gold recovered, the cost of equipment and supplies, and the effort and time invested. While some individuals may find success in recovering significant amounts of gold, it is important to approach highbanking as a recreational activity or hobby rather than a guaranteed source of income.