Now that booster tracks can be created using gold ore, I seem to be getting through my supplies rather quickly.

What is the layer with the highest amount of gold? I'm currently looking around layer 25-30, but can't seem to find more than a couple of blocks..


6 Answers 6


I'm always mining on the second level on top of bedrock. That is 4-6 blocks on top of bedrock layer.

This area is very rich in everything. Tons of coal, tons of iron and reasonable amounts of gold/diamonds/lapiz/redstone.

  • I just picked up 15 blocks in about 10 minutes by doing this, good call
    – soulBit
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 12:49
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    If you're worried about lava, you might mine a little higher. I think diamonds spawn 10 layers and down.
    – Shinrai
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 13:04
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    I actually ended up mining about layer 11-12 when looking at the F3 debug info (so just on top of the lava layer)
    – soulBit
    Commented Apr 22, 2011 at 16:32

ore frequency

mirror of original source

See also http://digital-trauma.de/mc.html and http://minecraftwiki.net/wiki/Altitude

Gold is equally common between 5-20 blocks above bedrock. Lava becomes extremely common at about 10 blocks above bedrock. If you mine at about 12 blocks above bedrock, your odds of finding ore are just as good as they are anywhere else, while your odds of finding lava are far lower.

So save yourself a lot of pain: don't bother going much deeper than about 12 blocks above bedrock.

  • 1
    Where did you find that image? That's excellent!
    – Ricket
    Commented Apr 23, 2011 at 4:12
  • If I understand the graph correctly, you should go 7 blocks (not 12) above bedrock, cause bedrock ends at layer 5. Commented Apr 23, 2011 at 12:32
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    That is an interesting link and all, but do you of a source that was updated later then May 2010? That is almost a year ago and Mincraft has updated several times. Are we certain that the map generator has not been modified at all since then?
    – Zoredache
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 22:09
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    Link is dead....
    – John
    Commented Dec 25, 2011 at 21:53
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    digital-trauma.de/mc.html and minecraftwiki.net/wiki/Altitude seem relatively up to date. Frank, take your pick! Commented Sep 6, 2012 at 23:25

Try to mine around lava, the lower you get and the closer you are to lava, the more chances you get for rare ores like diamond and gold.


Updated and corrected answer:

Gold spawns between bedrock and height 32. Between y=2 and y=29 you will find the most gold.

There are two methods I will recommend to quickly and efficiently obtain gold.

METHOD 1 - Branch Mining

Dig down to level 11 or 12 so that you're at or above the lava lakes, so that you don't have it pouring in on you all the time. Make a corridor in either the x or the z direction. Every 4th block along the corridor, make a tunnel leading away from the corridor. This is the best way to find nearly all the ores on that level while breaking the minimum number of blocks.

The reason I recommend going to this level is that you will also be finding diamonds, as they spawn below level 16.

If you wanted to more thoroughly mine the area, do your first mineshafts at level 11, then go up to level 14 and do mineshafts in between the ones below, so that the tunnels are arranged as follows, where x = tunnel and s == stone:



This will allow you to find virtually all the gold (and diamonds) in those levels.

METHOD 2 - Speed Mining

This is a more end-game method, as it requires the use of a Beacon and lots of diamond/xp levels.

Dig down to bedrock (level 5) in the center of the area you want to mine out. Place a full beacon at the bedrock level, and set it to Haste II. Get yourself an Efficiency V pick, and a Silk Touch pick. Then proceed to mine out ALL the material in the beacon's coverage area (50 blocks away from the beacon block), mining stone with the Efficiency pick and non-smelt ores with the Silk Touch pick. Start by standing on level 14 and mining blocks 15 and 16, then work down from there. You will find TONS of gold and diamonds this way. If you convert lava to obsidian and mine it, you will end up with around a double chest of obsidian as well. Throw the gold and iron in furnaces, and use a Fortune III pick to break the ore blocks later, so they don't fill up your inventory so fast when you're mining.

Another way to do it, now that repairing tools costs so little in 1.8, is to just use an Efficiency V Silk Touch pick, so that you don't have to carry two picks around with you and switch out all the time.

If you have two beacons, it's even faster if you set one to Haste II and the other to Speed II. You can sprint mine and get a lot done quickly.

I have done this in two different areas, and I have around a half stack of diamond blocks, even though I've used tons of diamonds to make tools and armor.

Finally, after 1.10, an additional 20 veins of gold per chunk are generated in Mesa biomes between layers 32 and 79 inclusive. This means on average an additional 120 gold ore per chunk on top of the normal 8 ores. For comparison, there are about 77 iron ore per chunk.


Gold is often found in the bottom 10 layers of the world, but it can be found almost anywhere (although it's very rare). When hunting for gold, you know you are at the right depth if you see pools of lava


gold and diamonds normally appear within 30 blocks of lava and also diamonds appear underneath the lava and to the side

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    This is due to confirmation bias (i.e., it's just in your head), because it's easier to see diamond that's exposed to lava. Diamond and gold is actually evenly distributed if you look at an ore finder (or the game's code). Commented Sep 7, 2012 at 0:35

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