About Us


I swirled my first gold pan at the age of 10 (1958) and was amazed that there was still gold in the streams of Northern California – just like in the old’n days!  That first attempt in mining was with an old steel gold pan that a friend of my dad’s brought to a “4th of July” camp outing in the frigid waters about a half hour north of Redding.   

I didn’t really get the “Gold Bug” until after the marriage to my sweet bride-to-be, Stacy, in 1971. We had moved from Redding, California to Portland, Oregon to attend Bible College.  Following a term paper in one of my college English classes (I had chosen the subject of “The California Gold Rush”), the “Bug” bit me hard!  I proceeded to drag her all over the state of Oregon to get my “Gold Fix”.  After becoming a part of GPAA in the mid 70s, I decided I would just “luuuv” to mine for a living, but had no contacts with any “real” gold miners.  So, in our infinite wisdom (ha ha), we started selling gold pans and small tools to the local miners in the Redding area (we had moved back home after college) out of the back of our pickup in 1978 at the local flea market.  We would glean every tidbit of information we could gather from the “oldtimers” and by mid 1980 we were on our way to supporting a family of four with our mining ventures.


Our “brick and mortar” retail business, THE MINER’S CACHE, has continued to survive (and grow) thru these difficult times in this California environment of excessive restrictions, thanks to the ongoing support of our customers.  We now sit with over 40 years experience in dredging and prospecting.  We also have experience in the use of metal detectors from our professional mining days and are continually expanding that knowledge.

THE MINER’S CACHE maintains a fully stocked line of dredges (1 ½” – 12” dredges available), trommels, metal detectors and associated supplies to meet the needs of the professional miner as well as the novice.  We currently stock several dredges and highbankers from 6 different manufacturers along with all the supporting equipment to meet those needs.  We are also authorized stocking dealers for Bounty Hunter, Garrett, Fisher, Tesoro, XP Deus and Minelab metal detectors.


With the dredging restrictions in California, we continue to expand our own mining operations to the north.  We have been working with individuals to get profitable mining programs developed in the Alaska region.  Whether mining in the interior of Alaska, or in the ocean, it is one of the last great frontiers!  In the meantime we are quietly working with several individuals and organizations to bring sanity back to our mining roots in California.

THE MINER’S CACHE has been built on the sharing of information.  We want to see clean, profitable mining programs flourish.  Our goal is to assist you, whether just getting started or a seasoned professional, to find the information and equipment to make your adventure a memorable one. Our wish is that we will become a tool towards your success. Please visit us often over the next several months as we expand this sight and, hopefully, make your mining experience an easier and more enjoyable one.  If you have any questions, please feel free to call us at (530) 410-3122.

God Bless,
Chip & Stacy Hess


“Whatever we do, do all to the glory of God.”  1Cor. 1031