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Prospectors fight Auburn Recreation Area closure to mining

April 28, 2010

After we sent the May issue to press we learned that California State Parks issued an order closing the Auburn State Recreation Area to use of gold mining equipment other than a gold pan, and no tools may be used in conjunction with a pan. The area encompasses much of the North and Middle Forks of the American River and covers approximately 40 miles of prime gold country. It's a very popular area for small-scale miners and detectorists searching for gold.

Don Robinson is one of our senior writers and president of the Mother Lode Goldhounds. Robinson attempted to meet with Mike Lynch, manager of the area for State Parks, but Lynch conveniently took a week off and was unreachable. We cannot find a record of any meetings or comment opportunities provided to the public prior to the closure order. Robinson and the Mother Lode Goldhounds are spearheading an effort to get this closure lifted. He suggests concerned miners and prospectors send an email with constructive comments to those in charge, who are:
     Mike Lynch, Auburn Recreation Area manager -- mlync@parks.ca.gov
     Scott Nakaji, Gold Fields District Superintendent -- snakaji@parks.ca.gov
     Ruth Coleman, California State Parks director -- rcoleman@parks.ca.gov

The closure order can be viewed on our website: Auburn Recreation Area closure order

You can also view the email sent by Don Robinson and the email sent by Associate Editor Chris Ralph to California State Parks director Ruth Coleman.

UPDATE: Closure order cancelled due to overwhelming response from small miners and prospectors.

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