VERMOGNO (ZUBIENA), ITALY - 24 JUNE 2017: A pendant Californian gold nugget found by Richard Mason (71) aka Uncle Fuzz and Joyce Mason (76), husband and wife from Placerville, California, is seen here around Uncle Fuzz's neck at the Victimula Gold Panner's Arena in the Bessa Natural Reserve in Vermogno (Zubiena), Italy, on June 24th 2017. Mr and Ms Mason have a claim in California where they search for gold. Uncle Fuzz’s ancestor was one of the first gold miner in 1848 during the Gold Race. Uncle Fuzz is a former accountant and Joyce is a former nurse who handled more than 10,000 babies in approx. 40 years of work. They've been gold panning since 1998.
Gold Panners from Italy, Switzerland, France, UK, US and Slovenia gathered in Vermogno (Zubiena) for the 36th Italian Gold Panning Championship.
Gold panning is a form of placer mining and traditional mining that extracts gold from a placer deposit using a pan. The process is one of the simplest ways to extract gold, and is popular with geology enthusiasts especially because of its cheap cost and the relatively simple and easy process. Once a suitable placer deposit is located, some alluvial deposit are scooped into a pan, where it is then gently agitated in water and the gold sinks to the bottom of the pan. Materials with a low specific gravity are allowed to spill out of the pan, whereas materials with a higher specific gravity sink to the bottom of the sediment during agitation and remain within the pan for examination and collection by the prospector.