|Overlooking South Pass|
|Overlooking Atlantic City, Wyoming - my summer home for at least five years|
when I mapped about 400 square miles, eight quadrangles and several
underground mines. Note the elevation and population (photo by
South Pass was Wyoming's first gold discovery. Most of the greenstone belt and its gold districts remained poorly explored. When I started at the Geological Survey, I heard many people claim the region was mined out. This is what most people and nearly every historian who knows nothing about geology say about mining districts. When I decided to map the district in the 1980s, much of the district was unmapped and there was practically no information on any of the mines. It had been overlooked just like the Seminoe Mountains greenstone belt where I found visible gold and started a gold rush in 1981 and also the Rattlesnake Hills greenstone belt, where the geology was so favorable for large gold deposits, I couldn't believe no one had ever looked for major disseminated and high-grade gold deposits. Anyone who has studied gold deposits should have been in these three areas.
|Come to think of it, I have a start on my beard and|
hair (actually I had long hair all though HS and college)
so maybe I could be an honorary Duck Dynasty
And then there are the gold-bearing shear zones in the Atlantic City-South Pass City- Miners Delight trends and also in the Lewiston trend. These trends contain numerous historical mines and prospects, but more than 95% of the structures have never been sampled! Who knows what gold mine awaits discovery along these trends.
And then there are the giant gold paleoplacers - where gold is found in giant alluvial fans and reworked fans that were eroded from the South Pass area, or from a giant, hidden lode adjacent to the paleoplacers. The USGS suggested that just one of these - the Dickie Springs-Oregon Buttes paleoplacer contained at least 28.5 million ounces of gold. Where did all of the gold come from? I'm pretty sure I know, but it remains unexplored and buried.
|Another South Pass field trip - trucks as far as the camera can see (photo by Dave Miller, 2004)|
|2002 photo of another field trip to South Pass (photo by Dave Miller, 2002). I'm in the center talking about geology.|
|Field trip for gold panning|
|South Pass field trip|
|Field trip to Snowy Range, Wyoming|
|Paleoplacer gold from the Dickie Springs area (photo courtesy of J. David Love).|
|Gold-bearing fanglomerate at Dickie Springs south of South Pass.|