Public Fossicking Area Collaboration (Louis Creek)

Please feel free to contribute to this tread,any information you would like to share on the public fossicking area (Louis Creek) 4 km west of Howard. Information may include-vehicle access and parking,track locations,hazards,camping facilities,toilets,accommodation,access and/or local info contact numbers,boundary locations,how bad the sand flies are and last but not least any general locations for finding a little gold.(Or a lot who knows!)

Dont forget to upload any good photos or Youtube links too!!

The more of us who contribute the better so don’t be shy.

This could be an excellent resource for us Paydirt gold seekers!!


A good vid to see what the track is like up to Louis Creek and the Howard Campsite also.

And next one shows how the digging is around these huge boulders(watch your fingers)

Heard good things about this area…anyone else had any luck here?

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Just a Couple of pics from up the top end of the Louis Creek


Pretty sure this is the bottom corner! but not a 100% sure!!


Another good vid of upper Louis Creek!!

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Nearby DOC Camp

Ive only been prospecting for maybe 4 months now. Went to Louis a few weeks back and got 0.32g, nice flakes and got my biggest one yet. Went there again and finished my hole and it still produced the goods. And yep you need a big crow bar to move them boulders.


Didn’t realize this post was 3 years old lol

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Hi Leo

Yep still plenty of gold to be had there enough for everybody 💁

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Yep was quite surprised considering the amount of holes and work people have done there. Beautiful spot, cant wait to go back once I’ve finished this damn hop harvest

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Just went out to Louis creek for the 1st time since begginers, the road heading up to the doc fossicking area had been closed due to logging so you have to walk (about 30-45Mins to lower end of upper site or 1:15 to upper end), some of the most miners we have ever seen in a public site other then a long weekend at slab hutt.

We walked up to the very top end of the fossicking area and EVERYWHERE had been mined modern tailings like the old timers all over the place massive holes everywhere almost everwhere I dug loose gravel, and could find not a single unmined virgin spot that was any good, went way upstream to the end of the area, got the odd flake or two a pan, we finally found a good looking unmined spot in front of this big rock got a couple flakes test panning we thought we would dig down to bedrock cleaned it all out and got about $5 worth of gold from all that digging.

We went downstream followed it down, eventually we started finding unmined spots but they were a lot poorer and bedrock was hard to reach, the upper area has been completly hammered so hard to find a good unmined spot, the lower area we actually did better on you cant reach bedrock but we found a good spot we got 1/2 a dozen alright sized flakes a pan and walked away with a bit of colour from that spot, but honestly its the moonlight of the north really good gold but has been hammered and is pretty much impossible to find one of those spots. Also currently quite hard access, should have a quick video we shot up soon.



There are some :grin: there just easier to find if you’ve been going there for awhile :tipping_hand_man:t2::grin:

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Possibly but we only dug down to deep bedrock in one place, and (I guess maybe its the type of creek were test panning does not give an accurate reading) spent about 12 hours test panning just about everyspot with potential to almost no succsess there were a few that would have maybe wielded a 1/4 gram or maybe 1/2 a gram if we dug all out there but really nothing worth the time.

Some massive waterfalls up stream (probably about 10M) huge dark plungepools I reckon no one (at least I hope I know there were dredgers sneaking in there in 2011-12) would have got to them and would probably have some paydays there.

Here’s our colour for the weekend like it’s not trash but the worst we have done since our first trip to moonlight creek and the fact we couldn’t locate a good spot, but some of it also came from a day at New Creek (not as much gold there and has also actually been hammered but no where near as hard so could find some alright spots and we’re getting similar results to Louis )


Here is a video on our quick trip to Louis and New Creek.

Hope you enjoy

Hey team. I just went to the Lower Louis Creek, little gold but enjoyable all the same. I have a question re the area, is the Tasman District Fossicking area in the public allowed to be used by the public? I can’t se anything on it

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If you are asking can the Tasman district council gold fossicking area be used by the public? Of course it can thats the intire point of a fossicking area, they are the few spots left in NZ where prospecters can freely enjoy prospecting without an expensive permit or risking getting told off.

Cheers for the reply

I know there are the 17 (i think) areas set on DOC including Louis Creek and New Creek as per the Paydirt locations but it doesn’t reference the Tasman one?

Would certainly be easier to step out of the car and be right at the Tasman location to pan.

You can step out of the car and pan the tasman public fossicking area as it is shown on the picture above? A little confused on what you mean

Sorry, meaning it would certainly be easier to pan at the Tasman fossicking area than climbing back up that freaken mountain at Louis Creek. I’m not fit so was a good lung workout climbing back up the hill lol

Any area you can drive a car to, hop out & pan/sluice box is going to be the most thrashed area. So don’t expect to find much, if any thing. Stands to reason don’t you think? No gold is easy gold. The more effort you put in getting to a spot further away the more you increase your chances… More so in the public fossicking areas. But of course many do that as well. As long as you enjoy the outing, getting among nature & going through the processes any gold is a bonus.

Good luck out there

JW :cowboy_hat_face:

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