January 2003 by Edgar B. Heylmun, PhDThere is a sizable area that straddles the U.S.-Mexico border where native silver occurs in shear zones at relatively shallow depths. The district is in the low but rugged Pajarito Mountains, the highest point of which is 5,838 feet at Cerro Ruido, on the Mexican side. The deceptively rough terrain forced the first border surveyors, in 1855, to kill several mules and horses because of their injuries.
A group of Pittsylvania County landowners sitting on 92 million pounds of uranium ore wants Virginia to end its 25-year ban on uranium mining.
Some claim they can smell gold. This may be, but when I take a whiff of gold, I smell dirt, rotten eggs, garlic or just nothing: my nose is everything but sensitive.
Attractive geology does not guarantee mining investment if a region’s policies are bad, say mining executives surveyed in the seventh Annual Survey of Mining Companies released by The Fraser Institute.
Alluvial fans are essentially dry land “deltas” which can be found in all climates. However, they are best developed in arid and semi-arid regions, where they may be many square miles in area. They are built up by outpourings of silt, sand, and gravel caused by seasonal run-off, as well as by boulders and cobbles carried by flash floods.
In 1967, a local resident showed me a pouch of small gold nuggets and flakes. Several years later I asked the same person where that gold was found. He responded, “From the streambed below the old stamp mill at Apex.”
Earlier this year when gold topped $1,000 an ounce, Gibbons, a former mining geologist and lawyer, vowed to veto any bill that called for increasing mining taxes in 2009.
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