The Mine Where Everyone Missed: Part 2 - Unlocking History

  • Heading deeper into the heart of the mine, we were pleased to find it dry and, because of that, to encounter more historic mining artifacts that had been preserved pretty well… Both of us were quite curious as to what is to be found past that platform up the raise at the end of the main haulage adit. Do any drifts run off to the side from that point? We simply don’t know. It may be difficult to tell in the video, but the raise running up to that platform is nearly vertical and the sides of the raise are smooth. There was no air flow back there and so this does not connect with the surface either. We discussed various ideas – such as returning with a cheap, remote-controlled helicopter or drone or even using a crossbow to shoot a rope up there in order to see what the layout is, but eventually had to reject every idea as impractical. So, that raise remains a mystery for now.
    It was very difficult for me to move around on that lower level the winze dropped down to. The bottom of the drift was covered in sharp, loose rock that was constantly shifting as I walked on it. As you undoubtedly observed, it was a completely different type of rock than the “concrete” flow we enjoyed going through above. Perhaps the early miners mistook the rock I encountered on that lower level for bedrock and that is why those chose to run the adit in at the location they did? In other words, they may have been hoping to encounter the ancient river channels at the point where it met the bedrock (which is the sweet spot for placer gold).
    This bears expanding upon as, based upon the comments on the first video, many people seem to misunderstand the placer deposits. In the ancient past, there were a series of mighty rivers that ran through this area. As time ate away the mountains that the rivers carved through, gold deposits were exposed and slowly accumulated in the rivers below (just as they do today). After millions of years, these mighty rivers eventually died and were buried by violent volcanic activity. Millions of years more passed and geological forces twisted and lifted the ancient river channels in the same process that leads modern scientists to discover the fossils of sea shells on top of mountains. Today, these ancient river channels and their gold are hidden underground high in the Sierra Nevada mountains. Often, there is no clear indication on the surface of the riches that lie beneath. California’s Gold Rush brought many miners swarming into these mountains chasing after the placer gold found in the creeks and rivers. However, it was not long until this gold supply was exhausted. The miners then turned their attention to the source of the gold they had been chasing and went burrowing after the underground lode gold deposits that the placer gold comes from. It is likely during this process that miners stumbled across the ancient river channels deep underground and the treasure trove of placer gold they contained. This unleashed a new gold rush as the miners chased this new source of gold and tried to figure out the location and flow of the buried ancient river channels.
    One last “oh by the way” that you might find interesting… The miners of the past did not have the benefit of modern technology in locating, measuring and assessing gold deposits. Again, I can’t give too much away, but I will say that this mine is sitting VERY close to one of the last major untapped ancient river channels out there. The miners working here came painfully close to connecting with it. If California laws regarding mining ever ease up a bit, it is fair to say that Adit Addicts and I would be putting up claim markers on this one. We don’t presently have the capital or expertise to exploit this deposit, but look at production records for mines like the nearby Ruby Mine and you’ll get an idea of the tremendous wealth still sitting underground here.
    All of these videos are uploaded in HD, so adjust those settings to ramp up the quality! It really does make a difference.
    You can see the gear that I use for mine exploring here:
    You can click here for my full playlist of abandoned mines:
    Thanks for watching!
    Growing up in California’s “Gold Rush Country” made it easy to take all of the history around us for granted. However, abandoned mine sites have a lot working against them – nature, vandals, scrappers and various government agencies… The old prospectors and miners that used to roam our lonely mountains and toil away deep underground are disappearing quickly as well.
    These losses finally caught our attention and we felt compelled to make an effort to document as many of the ghost towns and abandoned mines that we could before that colorful niche of our history is gone forever.
    I hope you’ll join us on these adventures!

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    95 Comments and 68 replies
  • Tawanda Chipato
    Tawanda Chipato Crazy video...kik....
    • Dave Scott
      Dave Scott An alien beast moves across the opening, I would probably knock myself out running out in the first fifteen feet, and it would be game over for me. Crazy cool video, thanks for sharing with us.
      • Metal Head
        Metal Head Some of that rock in there reminds me of either a type of opal or even maybe a variation of obsidian..
        But being your in a ancient pyroclastic flow of ash..I am leaning towards opal or some other possible form.of a like type rock formed from trees that use to be there or another organic material..
        These are the glassy and like type areas you saw chipped and broken away.
        There could very well be some pricy gem and other stone quality materials in all that..
        Just saying.. I would be rock hounding the hell out of what could possibly be there hidden away.
        • HobbyMan UK
          HobbyMan UK Impressive location!
          • Miles
            Miles That explore just keep getting better and better! That last winze was amazing with so many rock colors and the green water wow lol!
          • That is one magnificent mine. TY Tons
            • TVR Exploring
              TVR Exploring Thank you. It really impressed us because, although there were some huge mines in the area, they are almost all caved or destroyed by now. But everyone missed this one!
          • heartland96a
            heartland96a Those flakes of blue yellow stone at the bottom of the first wynes is amazing! I d put it to use with a water feature or fountain, doubt its worth much as an ore but very very valuable for its beauty.
            • Lora Lei
              Lora Lei "this must be a fault... It looks quite precarious. but there's nothing on the ground and it looks pretty solid" --- lmao i thought it was funny that you said it was both precarious and solid in the same sentence xD My friend and I dug our own tunnels for fun when we were 20. We made it almost 500 feet before it started getting very scary and we were afraid of cave ins and being trapped. Unfortunately, the property was sold and we can't access the cave anymore and through the mix all the footage of us digging it out and how our processes evolved from dragging the dirt out on a rug, to using rope and pulley system, to wheel barrels, and finally a homemade cart was all lost. We had electricity ran to the very head of the mine where we were digging and even brought a TV and Sega in with us to play games while we took breaks. I'd never dig a cave like that again unless we had proper supports and cement, but I have to admit it was really fun.
              • Richard Thunderhawk
                Richard Thunderhawk They're really sucked there was nothing in the mind I wasted all my time watching it I've been in mines Death Valley had some beautiful minds lot of things of find that once been stripped of everything even my pride
                • Boarder Line Sk8 Media
                  Boarder Line Sk8 Media Really enjoying this exploration. Really satisfying to watch you guys doing this.
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