You don't need much equipment to pan for gold - a shovel and a gold dust pan. The old prospectors used metal pans and you can also. Today they also come in plastic in bright colors and they have little ridges called "gold catchers" in them. I don't think you need the "gold catchers" but the plastic pans might be a little easier to handle. You can also get small pans which are usually used just for the last stages of flushing out tiny gold flakes. The small ones are good for children to use. My mother always said, "Never use a pan that has been used for cooking." I don't know if this is true or not. The picture to the right on this page shows a rusty gold pan. It looks like it worked but I don't think I would use a rusty pan if I had a choice.