How To Make Money Panning In Stardew Valley

Panning isn’t a very well-known mechanic in Stardew Valley. Players who don’t take the time to learn about panning may miss out on some great rewards and some easy money! Learn everything there is to know about Panning by reading this article!

A screenshot from Stardew Valley in which the farmer is panning in the Mountain lake.
What treasures will I find?

What Is Panning?

Just like the real-life practice that originated in ancient Rome, panning refers to the act of sifting through a river or lake in order to find valuables such as gold or other precious metals. In Stardew Valley, you can find Artifacts, Gems, Ore, and more by panning!

How To Unlock Panning

To unlock panning in Stardew Valley, you must either purchase the “Panning” development from the Joja Community Development Form in Jojamart or complete the Fish Tank Bundles in the Community Center.

1. Joja Route

Become a Member

The Joja route is very straightforward. Head on over to Jojamart and speak with Morris. He will offer you a membership card for 5,000g. Once you’ve paid, you’ll have to wait a day before you can start completing Developments. Keep in mind that this action is totally irreversible! Once you agree to membership, the Community Center in town will be transformed into a Joja Warehouse.

Not quite as picturesque as the Community Center.

Purchase the Development

Return to Jojamart on the next day and you’ll find that there is a piece of paper next to Morris that you can interact with. This is the Joja Community Development Form. You can now, for a price, start to unlock different developments. Since we’re interested in Panning, unlock “Panning” by paying 20,000g.

When you do this, you need to wait one more day. During the night, Joja workers will work diligently to remove the Glittering Boulder that’s clogging a part of the Mountain north of Pelican Town. Head on over there on the next morning to witness a cutscene with Willy, and get your hands on that precious Copper Pan!

The glittering boulder is gone for good!

2. Fish Tank Route

The other way to unlock panning is by completing all of the Fish Tank Bundles in the community center. Once all of the bundles are finished, the Junimos will remove the Glitter Boulder and you’ll be able to start panning the next morning. To do so, go to the Mountain Lake area and watch the cutscene with Willy.

There are six bundles you must complete:

  1. River Fish Bundle
  2. Lake Fish Bundle
  3. Ocean Fish Bundle
  4. Night Fishing Bundle
  5. Specialty Fish Bundle
  6. Crab Pot Bundle

If this seems like a bit too much, that’s because it is, especially if you don’t like fishing. The daunting task of completing the Fish Tank Bundle will take at least one full year because it requires you to catch Fish that are only available in certain areas or during certain Seasons. But, fear not! We’re here to help.

Completing the Fish Tank may take some time.

River Fish Bundle

These fish can be caught in the Pelican Town River, the River running through the Cindersap Forest, or on your Riverland Farm.

Fish NameHow To Find It
SunfishBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Spring or Summer. Only when it’s not raining.
CatfishBetween 06:00 AM and midnight. Only in Spring and Fall. Only when it’s raining.
ShadBetween 09:00 AM and 02:00 AM. Only in Spring, Summer, and Fall. Only when it’s raining.
Tiger TroutBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Fall or Winter. Any weather.

Lake Fish Bundle

These fish can be caught in the Mountain lake near the mines.

Fish NameHow To Find It
Largemouth BassBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Any Season. Any Weather.
CarpAnytime. Only in Spring, Summer, or Fall. Any weather.
BullheadAnytime. Any Seasons. Any weather.
SturgeonBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Summer and Winter. Any weather.

Ocean Fish Bundle

These fish can be caught at the Pelican Town Docks, Ginger Island, or the Beach Farm.

Fish NameHow To Find It
SardineBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Spring, Fall, and Winter. Any weather.
TunaBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Summer and Winter. Any weather
Red SnapperBetween 06:00 AM and 07:00 PM. Only in Summer and Fall. Only when raining.
TilapiaBetween 06:00 AM and 02:00 PM. Only in Summer and Fall. Any weather.

Night Fishing Bundle

These fish can only be caught after sundown.

Fish NameHow To Find It
WalleyeBetween 12:00 PM and 02:00 AM. Only in Fall or Winter (with Rain Totem). Only when raining.
BreamBetween 06:00 PM and 02:00 AM. Any Season. Any weather.
EelBetween 04:00 PM and 02:00 AM. Only in Spring or Fall. Only when raining.

Specialty Fish Bundle

These rare fish are found in special locations.

Fish NameHow To Find It
PufferfishFound in the Ocean, between 12:00 PM and 04:00 PM. Only in Summer. Only when it’s not raining.
GhostfishFound while fishing in the Mines levels 20 and 60, anytime. Any Season. Any weather.
SandfishFound in The Desert, between 06:00 AM and 08:00 PM. Any Season. Any weather.
WoodskipFound in the Secret Woods and the Forest Farm, anytime. Any Season. Any Weather.

Crab Pot Bundle

These fish can be caught in Crab Pots. Crab Pot fish are far more straightforward. You can catch any of these fish during any Season and in any weather. The only factor to think about is whether you’ve placed your Crab Pot in freshwater or saltwater. Further, some of these fish can also be found as beach forageables.

Freshwater FishSaltwater FishForageables
Crayfish, Snail, PeriwinkleLobster, Crab, Cockle, Mussel, Shrimp, Oyster, ClamCockle, Mussel, Oyster, Clam

How To Pan

As you’re walking around and minding your business in Stardew Valley, you may notice a tiny shimmer spot in the water. These little spots indicate that you can pan in the area.

Walk up as close as you can to the shimmering light, equip your Copper Pan and left-click to use it. Don’t confuse these areas with small bubbles in the water – these indicate that the area is great for fishing, not panning.

The shimmer spots can be missed if you’re not watching carefully!

Panning Locations

You can pan in almost any body of water, with the exception of the ocean. For example, you can pan in the Cindersap Forest river or lake, the Calico Desert pond, the Mountain Lake and river, the Pelican Town river, and on your very own Farmstead (unless you’re on the Beach Farm).

The Tracker Profession

You can find areas to pan more easily if you pick up the Tracker level ten Foraging profession. Trackers will get tiny little yellow arrows on their screen when they’re in the same area as a forageable. The little arrows will lead you to your prize. Furthermore, you can see tiny green arrows if there is an area you can pan nearby.

Follow the green arrow to find a spot to pan.

What Can You Get?

Now for the moment you’ve all been waiting for! What treasures can you find by panning in Stardew Valley? The items you can find while panning can be categorized into three categories: Ore, Gems, and Miscellaneous.

The more valuable an item, the rarer it is. However, you can improve your chances of finding more valuable things by increasing your Luck either permanently or temporarily. To increase your Daily Luck, you can solve the puzzle from Secret Note #20 and acquire the Special Charm wallet item. To increase your general Luck stat, you can wear one or two Lucky Rings, and eat food that buffs your Luck stat temporarily.

1. Ore

When panning, you are most likely to find Ore. You have a 40% chance to find Copper Ore, a 35% chance to find Iron Ore, a 23% chance to find Gold Ore, and a 1% chance to find Iridium Ore.

You can use raw Ore for crafting, or you can smelt five Ore into a metal bar. Metal bars are used in crafting and construction, but they can also be sold for a pretty nice profit as well. For maximum profits, increase your mining skill and pick up the Blacksmith level ten profession. With it, a single Gold Bar can net you 375g, and a single Iridium bar a whopping 1500g!

2. Gems

You have a 1.6% chance to find an Amethyst, Aquamarine, Emerald, Ruby, or Topaz while panning. Furthermore, you have a 2% chance to find a Diamond.

Gems make fantastic gifts, as nearly all villagers like all gems, and many love specific gems. Diamonds are the most popular gem, liked by all, and loved by eight different villagers.

Gems can also be replicated with a Crystallarium, or sold outright for a large profit. Pick up the Gemologist level ten Mining profession to increase the selling price of Gems by 30%.

3. Miscellaneous

You have a nearly 5% chance to find a random forageable mineral such as an Earth Crystal, Fire Quartz, or Frozen Tear. These are used in the Boiler Room bundle, and can be used for crafting useful devices like the Mayonnaise Machine, or gifted to villagers.

You have a 50% chance to find Coal while panning. Coal is very useful for smelting and can be hard to reliably find while mining. Every little bit counts!

You can also find an Omni Geode, which can contain any one of the many possible minerals you need to complete the Museum in Pelican Town. You are 26% likely to find an Omni Geode while panning.

On Ginger Island, you can find the Fossilized Tail artifact by digging at the Dig Site River. You can also find Taro Tubers while panning elsewhere on the Island. Remember that you can only pan in freshwater, so most of Ginger Island isn’t suitable for panning.

The dig-site river is just west of the Island Field Office.

Finally, you can find a Lucky Ring while panning anywhere. This is an incredibly lucky find as it’s both a rare item and incredibly valuable. Wearing this ring will give you a permanent +1 to your Luck.

Frequently Asked Questions

1. Can you Upgrade Your Copper Pan?

Unlike most other tools, you cannot upgrade your Copper Pan to, say, a Gold or Iridium Pan as of yet.

2. Which professions Help With Panning?

If you’re looking to make a pretty penny of panning, grab the Gemologist or Blacksmith professions at Mining level 10. One increases the selling price of your gems, and one the selling price of your metal bars.

3. How Much ore Do you Get From panning?

The quantity of resources you get depends on your luck level.

4. What Do I do If I lose my Copper Pan?

Fear not! If you lose your Copper Pan, you can just buy a new one for 2,500g from Willy at his fishing shop at the docks.

Meet the author

I'm a content writer and an avid video game player whose favourites are either chill RPGs or super competitive shooters with no in-between! If anyone is still reading this please help, Joja has trapped me in a guide-writing factory and I'm so tired of drinking Joja Cola.

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