Reed gold mine is a gem, too

Reed Gold Mine

9621 Reed Mine Road, Midland. 704-721-4653.

Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday through Saturday. The mine is closed Sundays, Mondays and most major holidays.

Activities: Guests will have the opportunity to take a step back in time and walk the tunnels miners used to work. Reed Gold Mine is the site of the first documented gold find in the United States and the discovery allowed gold mining to spread throughout the South. North Carolina led the nation in gold production until 1848 when the California gold rush occurred. Today, panning for gold is reserved for April through October, but there are many attractions to explore during the winter months. Visitors can venture through the mining museum, walk trail grounds and take an underground mining tour.

Cost: There is no fee for admission or tours of the mine.

Target Audience: All ages.

Directions: N.C. 27 E. Turn left at Reed Mine Road. Destination will be on the right.

Distance from Charlotte: About 40 minutes.