A friend pointed this out to me in an issue of the ICMJ magazine a while back.
I have been using blue gold pans for a several of years now after first seeing this explanation in Golden Colorado at Gold-N-Detectors Shop.
Thank you Bill (the owner of Golden Detectors) and Don Finley (famous Drag Racer in Colorado).
The best color pan to use is the one that works for you...blue works for me, and now I know why. :-)
High Contrast Blue for Optimum Gold Visibility
Opposing points on the color wheel have high color contrast.
In the diagram, yellow (A) and blue (B) have high contrast.
This is why a blue pan will help you to see gold more easily than all other colors.
Black may seem like a good choice, but it will camouflage the black sand that is commonly found with alluvial gold.
Adjacent colors on the color wheel have low contrast, so orange or green would not be a good choice of color for gold visibility.
Low contrast combinations...
Green and yellow are from the light half of the wheel and do not reveal gold nuggets easily.
High contrast combinations...Red and blue are both ‘dark’ colors, giving maximum contrast to make gold nuggets highly visible.
Anyway, that’s why I only use, and sell, blue pans. 😊
Of course I have seen some guys using pink, red and purple…ultimately the best color pan for you is the one that works for you.