JAMESTOWN, CA - MAY 06: Jackson DeAndries pans for gold at Gold Prospecting Adventures May 6, 2008 on Woods Creek in Jamestown, California. With gold trading near $900 per ounce, people are flocking to California's gold country in search of gold. Companies offering gold panning tours are being inundated with reservations and mining supply stores are seeing a spike in people interested in purchasing supplies. (Photo by Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
It looks like there is a mini gold rush in Southern Oregon this year.
Grants Pass miner Mike Higbee says there are a lot more people mining in state waters on the Rogue River near Gold Hill this year than in years past. He thinks it is a combination of the high price of gold, the poor economy, and the moratorium on using suction dredges to mine gold in California.
The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality reports that it has issued 1,205 dredging pe3rmits this year, up 30 percent from last year. The number of permits sold to Californians is up 67 percent.
While some people say they are making good money, others are just having fun, and making enough to cover their gas.