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rexb

Van Duzer Mining District - Nevada

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Hello,

 

I received a book in the mail yesterday and one of the placer locations it talks about is the Van Duzer mining district. It is located a little south of Mountain City, Nevada and north of Aura which I believe is a ghost town. Just wondering if anyone out there might have heard anything recent about the area or if they have had an occasion to visit it. - or maybe around Gold Creek southeast of there. ;)

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Rex. I have tried to get in there but it is posted private property, or at least all the access is. A chat with the local rancher may be worth a try.---Bob

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Rex. I have tried to get in there but it is posted private property, or at least all the access is. A chat with the local rancher may be worth a try.---Bob

 

Thanks for the reply! Are you sure the whole area is private? It appears that it's in the Humbolt National Forest (except for a small sliver). The whole area is about six miles or 36 miles square. Which specific creek or mine were you trying to access so I will know to avoid it? There also appears to be a ranger station in the immediate vicinity. Of course I'm just looking at a map, so comments and feedback are still greatly appreciated.

 

Regards,

 

Rex B.

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Rex. I was trying to get to Van Duzer Creek itself . When you get to the area you are driving through irrigated hay feilds and the only way to get off the county road is to cross through private ranch land which many ranchers aren't happy to let you do in that area. It won't do much good to try this time of year in that area . It's already winter there, and it won't be long before it's below Zero most nights and heavy snow is possible anytime from now on. Good project for June or July next year though. If you re- read the info on the Van Duzer District you will see that most of the gold was mined at great depths in Van Duzer Creek itself. Not far from there is Tuscarora where many nuggets have been found on the hillsides. A better chance I think.---Bob

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I was planning to check the area north of Van Duzer Creek that is supposed to be closer to the small gold veins distributed in the Valmy Formation. This area is about 2117 feet higher in elevation than Van Duzer. Yes, going there in the winter would be pretty silly. We already have some snow here in Utah; I can only imagine what they have up there at 7000+ ft.

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Rexb:

 

What you need to do is further research - your data may not be up to date.

 

Almost the entire length of Van Duzer was processed by bucket line dredge in the later 1940s and early 1950s. There may be some productive tributary ravines creeks but they will be very steep - topo maps will show this. Perhaps a gold/quartz piece or two may be found in the dredge tails as well, but it may not be what you expect. This is why full research, topo maps and aerial photos are helpful. Aerial photos may also show access roads not shown on the topo maps.

 

Do your homework and you may find your own answers to your own questions!

 

Chris

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Chris,

 

I've been zooming in using the program Google Earth to find access routes into the area. The topo on it is 3-D and I can exaggerate the topography 3x to get a better vision of the "lay of the land". I read about the dredging, Cobb Creek, a tributary, was also dredged from about 1.5 miles upstream to the intersection of Van Duzer Creek. There is an area called "Picnic Flats" that may be open to the public which is right where one needs to be to access the intermittant streams up in the mountains northwest of Van Duzer Creek. Maybe the gravels of the smaller streams won't have gravels as deep as the 15 feet of Van Duzer. Yet, due to the possibility of their steepness it will present a challenge to find some quieter water at that elevation for gold deposition. The edges of the creeks and any cracks in bedrock could also provide potential areas to search. I have not been to the area, so basically I am talking in theory, when one actually visits a site, he or she may find things are all exactly the opposite of what they expected or hoped for, that's why first hand knowledge of the area cannot be "beat". Anyone with additional info. is welcomed of course.

 

Ps- As you know but what has not been mentioned is that those dredges turned up gold ranging from dust size to nuggets in the 5-6 ounce range. I'd be happy with a little "picker". I also have correlated geologic maps with topos, to get a better understanding of where to look, and outlined various bends in certain creeks that might provide good searching areas. I used Grasshopper Gulch which is along a big bend on Van Duzer that once held good placers as a model for looking at other creek areas to explore. :)

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