Understanding Hard Rock Mining: Terms and Methods—Part II
July 2004 by Chris RalphA better understanding of hard rock mining methods and knowing a little about how these mines work can help the individual prospector to understand reports and stories about both modern and historic mine operations.
Like almost 200 other Silver Valley miners, Butch Dempsey used to work at the Sunshine Mine in Kellogg. But, along with dozens of the others, he now works for the Columbus, Montana-based Stillwater Mining Co., about 400 miles to the east...
The “Golden Triangle” dry placer district in Sonora, Mexico, lies some 80 to 100 miles south of the border. It is in desert terrain at elevations between 1,900 and 2,300 feet above sea level.
Recent sharp price increases for copper, nickel and platinum group metals (PGMs) have greatly stimulated exploration for these metals, and individual prospectors have made important discoveries of new deposits.
The Big Swede was working his pan trying to get rid of the black sand. Usually there were others at the river, but on this day he was there alone. He figured that most of the other fellow miners were either doing their laundry, or working.
The story began in a southern Arizona mountain range...
During the Miocene and Pliocene mid-Tertiary Epochs, the Great Basin, Mojave, and Sonoran deserts within parts of California, Nevada, and Arizona became the source—the genesis—of ubiquitous epithermal “precious metal” fissure-gold veins associated with extensive acidic volcanic lava flows that blanketed much of the Cordillera during this time.
The Bawl Mill • Mining Claim Fees Are Going Up • Our Readers Say • Buell Park Pipe, Arizona • Mines and Money • Two Nevada Mines Look to Supply Own Power • Paleontonlogical Resources Preservation Act • Picks & Pans: Mexican "Edventure" • Over the Divide • Flat-Fault Gold in Sonora, Mexico • Looking Back • The Fern Mine • Map Offers Look at Butte's Mining History • Gold in China • 2004 National Mining Hall of Fame Inductees • Melman on Gold & Silver • Mining Stock Quotes and Mineral & Metal Prices