As I research where to go prospecting I’ve been doing a lot of reading of old reports, and old newspapers. During this reading I’ve come across many reports of sizeable Tasmanian gold nuggets. I’ve put together a database of all reported historical finds of decent-sized Tasmanian gold nuggets that I’ve come across. If you’ve come across references for significant Tasmanian gold nugget finds that aren’t here, please let me know (you can get in contact through my CONTACT page) and I’ll add it in.

I’ve laid out a table that you should be able to sort by any column, and you can also use the search box provided.

Table of historical Tasmanian gold nuggets

LocalityYearTypeWeight ozWeight gReference
Den Ranges1868specimen1.546.5Trove
Fingal area (Mangana?)1868nugget1.546.5Trove
Den goldfield1869specimen1.546.5Trove
Back Creek1870nugget0.7523.25Trove
Camp Creek1870snugget3.5108.5Trove
Hellyer River1873nugget1.237.2Trove
Back Creek1878nugget131Trove
Brandy Creek1878nugget8248Trove
Browns Plains1879nugget1.546.5Trove
Corinna area1879nugget1.546.5Trove
Back Creek1880nugget1.237.2Trove
Back Creek1880nugget4124Trove
Corinna area1880nugget262Trove
Pieman area1880nugget9279Trove
Golden Ridge1882nugget7.75240.25Trove
Long Plains1882nugget8248Trove
Long Plains area1882nugget17527Trove
Back Creek1883nugget393Trove
King River area (Lynchford?)1883nugget8248Trove
Back Creek?1884nugget5155Trove
Long Plains1885specimen5.7176.7Trove
Golden Ridge1889nugget262Trove
King River1889nugget393Trove
Five Mile Rise1890nugget2.577.5Trove
Five Mile Rise1890nugget131Trove
Five Mile Rise1890nugget4124Trove
Five Mile Rise1890snugget6186Trove
Ring River1891nugget10.25317.75Trove
Ring River1892nugget4124Trove
Melba Flats1892nugget0.7523.25Trove
Ring River1892nugget1.2538.75Trove
Bell Mount1893nugget8248Trove
Bell Mount1893nugget16496Trove
Melba Flats1893nugget5155Trove
Rocky River1883nugget2437533Trove
Rocky River1883nugget1444464Trove
Rocky River1883nugget39.751232.25Trove
Rocky River1883nugget9.5294.5Trove
Bell Mount1894nugget10310Trove
Bell Mount1894nugget22682Trove
Melba Flats1900nugget4124Trove
Melba Flats1902nugget6186Trove
Back Creek1915nugget9279Trove
Back Creek1920nugget393Trove
Long Plains1927nugget4.8148.8Trove
Jane River1935nugget0.927.9Trove

If you’re interested in modern finds, I think you won’t get much luck. Most people detecting today are very secretive about their finds. Ralph Bottrill’s booklet on Alluvial Gold in Tasmania has a table in page 6 which includes some modern reported finds.

A thing to keep in mind is that some of these reported Tasmanian gold nugget finds are probably dubious. I’ve screened out obvious errors, such as when a nugget was reported as weighing 25 dwt by one newspaper, and 25 ounces by another on the same day at the same place. However, non-existent large nuggets were sometimes reported just to drum up business, so to speak. It’s probably safe to take the old newspaper reports with a pinch of salt.

Again, if you’ve come across articles or publications reporting finds of Tasmanian gold nuggets that aren’t on this list, please let me know. Also if you have suggestions or ideas about the table layout and functionality, or any other feedback on what you’d like to see here, please get in touch through my contact page!


  1. Tasha

    What an interesting resource, thanks for creating this! Even if some of those are of non-existent large nuggets reported to drum up business, the number of nuggets and the weight of ones reported are significant enough to indicate that many would be accurate. Wouldn’t it be nice to find a 100g in Tassie today 🙂

  2. Vic

    Interesting , I’ve always wanted to gold prospect in Tas. You may be interested to know that i have an early photograph prob. 19thC. of a huge gold nugget named ‘the port Arthur’ maybe this was found in Tasmania.

    1. TasProspector

      Hi Vic,

      I found this when I did some investigating: Port Arthur Nugget. It looks like it was found in Victoria. It’s possible that the finder or an ancestor was a convict at Port Arthur, or that there was another connection.

      If you like I can upload the photos here. Send me a message on the Contact Form and I’ll send you an email you can reply and attach to.

    1. TasProspector

      Hi April,

      I’ve seen them for sale on Anaconda, just basic treasure detectors, not a bad price. If you’re looking for a gold detector then online from reputable suppliers is the way to go. Watch out for fakes, though, if you shop in Ebay or Gumtree there are almost more fakes than real ones.


  3. Thomas Z

    Hi Mad Taz Prospector
    I’m soon on my way to Tasmania with my son, but mostly to catch trouts.
    However very recently, my son got the gold fever, after a visit in Bathurst ( NSW ). He convinced me to buy a metal detector. We went for the Go Find 20.
    I am thinking of taking it with us, together with turbo pans and small shovel to have a go in some of the effluents to the lake.
    We will travel west from Launceston, west of Cradel mountain, down to Queenstown and then back to great lake, via King Williams Lake.
    During my readings, you seem the person who pops up the most, and your posts, answer and remarks are truly remarkable.
    Is there a place worth stopping and taking the detector / pans out in search for some colour?

    1. TasProspector

      Hi Thomas,
      Some of the creeks and rivers around Queenstown have gold. If you’re planning to fish at Lake Burbury then Linda Creek is not too far. Good luck!

      1. Sandra Healey

        Hi Tasprospector, please don’t encourage people to the left of the bridge at Moorina!!!
        So much rubbish, and unmentionable things done on private land to the left of the bridge over the Weld…this is not designated fossicking area!! And very illegal!
        Help making this known would be appreciated! Cheers.

        1. TasProspector

          Hi Sandra,
          Thanks for the comment, though it would have been better placed in the post about sapphires.
          I don’t know what you mean by “the left of the bridge at Moorina”. Do you mean the east or west bank, to the north or south of the bridge? The exact extent of the designated fossicking area is in the MRT website at http://www.mrt.tas.gov.au/portal/documents/10184/26357/6740c.jpg
          Loading up LISTmap, I can’t see private property on the banks of the Weld in Moorina, other than the Gold Course block, which is clearly marked on the MRT website map. Can you be more specific, please?

          PS I should add that I certainly would never encourage people to leave a mess behind, whether inside or outside a designated fossicking area. That’s just common sense!

          1. Max

            Hi Tasprospector, I have not tried any prospecting or fossicking as yet but have looked at a few areas using those maps and was wondering if you can camp in or near fossicking areas? I have also been watching and listening to a lot of your advice and its great 🙂 but somewhere over the last 2 hours haha you said fossicking is gemstones so if you find gold (hopefully) do you need a prospecting license aswell?

          2. TasProspector

            Hi Max,
            Whether you can camp in a fossicking area or not doesn’t really have anything to do with the fossicking area itself. It just depends on the land tenure and whether you’re allowed to camp in that type of land or not. For example, I often camp in or near fossicking areas in State Forest.

            You need a prospecting licence to prospect for any mineral, metals like gold included, outside of a designated fossicking area. No licence required inside the fossicking areas.

  4. Rick

    Hi there to get a licence for gold prospecting how long do it last for after you have one i live in Tasmania ?

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