January 14, 2017
The Goodsprings district is in Nevada, just across the line from
California. The hordes driving to Las Vegas roar right past it,
and it is now developing into an area of homes for people who have
gotten fed up with the big city.
As a result, the old mines near this burgeoning "bedroom community"
are getting attention from people eager to close them up.
Once upon a time ...
Now, let me relate a tail of mine exploring from around 1976 or so.
My friend Paul Gross and I had decided to spend the Christmas Holiday
week roaming the desert near Death Valley, and found ourselves in
Back then the place was the middle of nowhere and all the
mines were open and unmolested.
We awoke after a beautiful night on the desert and after breakfast
climbed down the ladder of a nearby incline shaft.
We were carrying small packs with water, food, a spare light,
carbide, and tools for collecting
mineral specimens. We were wearing boots, old sturdy clothes, and
hard hats with carbide lamps attached.
We never saw the light of day again for over 12 hours.
We surely covered miles and it was like every mine was connected
to every other underground.
It was unique in that we dropped down a shaft 100 feet
and then just roamed laterally, up and down raises now and then
and covered miles underground. We popped up in the open air,
the sky was dark and full of stars, and we were on the side of
a hill with no idea where our camp or vehicle were.
It was a really great experience, and only now do I realize how special it was.
I said, "Lets hike to the top of this hill and see if we
can get our bearings", and sure enough on the other side down in
the valley was my old International Scout and our camp and that ended a fine
I revisited this area (the Yellow Pine Mine) in the winter of 2001.
All of these mines have now been bulldozed shut.
The entire area has changed and nothing like this is
possible anymore. Camping is still pleasant, but there
is the bizzare yet interesting phenomena of the huge
beam of light from the casino pyramid in Las Vegas.
Also, I don't remember the endless stream of jet airliners, going
to and from Las Vegas 25 years ago.
Yellow Pine Mine
This was one of the big producers in the area.
I have used USGS Professional Paper 162 as a reference to this area (1931), but
Bulletin 1010 would also be worth finding and looking at.
Note that the link for "mine map" does not seem to work for me.
This is "Investigation of the Yellow Pine Zinc-Lead Mine, Clark County, Nevada".
- USGS Bulletin 1010
- USGS Bulletin 1010, Plage 5 (cross sections), PDF
- USGS Bulletin 1010, Plage 6 (cross sections), PDF
- Mine Explorer - yellow pine mine
- Yellow Pine mine map (UNT)
- Bulletin 1010, 1954, local copy (PDF, 118 pages)
- Plate 4, local copy (PDF)
- Plate 5, local copy (PDF)
- Plate 6, local copy (PDF)
- Plate 6, local copy (JPG)
- Mine map, local copy (JPG)
The "mine explorers" say the following about the #3 shaft (which I have called the Prairie Flower):
This was a significant shaft that extended down to the 900 level. The wooden structure has collapsed into the shaft.
Tony rappelled down finding a blockage at about 100 feet and another impassible blockage at around 200 feet.
When we explored the 900 level of the mine we found that the drift leading to this shaft was completely collapsed and impassible.
Drop me a line!
Tom's Old Mine Info / firstname.lastname@example.org