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With The Drought Over, "Gold Fever" Grips California

• http://www.zerohedge.com

The heavy rains that pummeled California this year ended the state's historic drought in spectacular fashion, saving the state's farming and tourism industries from an uncertain future. But the return of rainfall has had other less obvious economic ramifications, including, as the Los Angeles Times reports, the revival of an activity that's been associated with the state for more than 150 years: Prospecting for gold.

Thanks to the rain, the yellow metal is once again being found in the state's riverbeds for the first time since a judge's controversial ruling prohibited the use of pumps and other equipment that were once required to extract gold from the state's rivers.

And now that word has spread, the possibility of discovering immense riches underfoot is inspiring entrepreneurial Californians of a variety of ages and backgrounds to venture to the state's rivers and creeks in search of the shiny yellow metal, sometimes equipped with little more than a pan, as they hope to collect gold fragments buried in the muck under the water, according to the LAT.

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