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caver
01-29-2007, 11:03 AM
It was mid August and I had to drive about 5 hours to pick my Dad up. Spent the night there and early the next morning we left. We routed through Iowa and stopped to look at a couple covered bridges in Madison County. I prefer to avoid interstates in case you are wondering. We spent the first night out at Valentine NE. Took back roads up through the Badlands with a detour to the Aladdin Tipple near Aladdin WY.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769574-S.jpg

It was for coal mining and something to wet the taste buds for better things to come. Dad had never been to Devil's Tower so we continued on to it. The rest of the day was spent doing a somewhat monotonous drive to Big Timber and another motel room for a night. I had bought a new pop-up that only had one bed so we rented a pop-up up in Bozeman MT. We arrived at the rental place the next morning and headed towards the Neihart area of MT. Arriving in the afternoon I had time to do some re-con on my Suzuki DR650.
We camped in a nearby FS CG.
Relics along the way to finding the Silver Dyke Mill.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769575-S.jpg

I could see the mill but could not figure out how to get there.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769576-S.jpg
I'm keeping the pictures small to reduce bandwidth on the site they are hosted.
to be continued

andrgo
01-29-2007, 11:18 AM
Really neat pictures and info! Did you stop in any ghost towns along the way, or did you just go to the mine? I bet it was fun to see that up-close in person!

LauraA
01-29-2007, 04:07 PM
Brad, Great write up and pictures. It's nice you were able to make the trip with your Dad.
Thanks for sharing it, I look forward to more! :)

caver
01-29-2007, 04:51 PM
I really didn't know which forum to post this under. It might take a week or month to finish this report. Dad came along on a trip back in '99. He's been on several since. Often he stays at camp while I explore on the motorcycle. I think he turns 77 this summer.
I had to explore several roads as there was private property up what I thought was the obvious way to the mill. This is where the mapping GPS comes in real handy. Above the Silver Dyke adit there is a large fenced off hole. Too small to be a strip mine but still a pretty big hole with very unstable sides. I finally head down the road to find the mill. I realize that the last half mile was the haul road for the ore cars. The adit below the big hole had collapsed or been sealed. I decided to come back in the morning with my tripod and film camera to take some good shots. These are all done on my old point and shoot digital.
Looking down at the mill remains. In upper right you can see the road I shot the previous picture from.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769577-S.jpg

Turn 180 and we see the tipple remains.

http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769578-S.jpg

You can see my motorcycle in the distance. The adit was about a half mile through the woods.

http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769580-S.jpg

Below the ore bins.

Next is the other side of the ore bins. The rest of the mill had fallen in.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769583-S.jpg

The software only allows 4 pictures so I just wasted about 10 minutes of stuff I had to delete. All pictures are on my smugmug photo website under Vacation 2006. They are in chronological order.

caver
01-29-2007, 04:59 PM
Note top of metal tank in this picture.


http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769584-S.jpg

The Silver Dyke Mill has seen better days.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769585-S.jpg

Back to camp and we head down the road. This is just outside Neihart next to the highway.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769587-S.jpg

http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769588-S.jpg

to be continued

Flatiron
01-29-2007, 05:47 PM
Brad..............Thanks for posting the Montana photos. :D I never mabe it out to the Neilhart area, even though I lived not too many hours away. Maybe on our next trip back to Montana. .:p

caver
01-29-2007, 11:40 PM
I'm glad everyone is enjoying the report. After Neihart we headed towards Monarch and turned off heading to Hughesville. I was able to take the truck all the way there. I think we dumped the camper off somewhere and picked it up on the way back.
A mine adit near the road in Hughesville. I got a handheld mirror from the truck to shine back in it.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769589-S.jpg
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769590-S.jpg

Storage bins at Hughesville
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769592-S-1.jpg

A mine shaft that was missing its headframe.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769593-S-1.jpg

caver
01-30-2007, 12:09 AM
Hughesville again.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769595-S.jpg

After Hughesville we headed to Great Falls then down to Helena. We stopped at a small FS CG that was on the way to Rimini but it was just rough looking, including the campers and only one site empty. With little daylight left we took a gamble and headed on up the mountain to Macdonald Pass FS CG. Only two other sites occupied and a real gem compared to the other one. The next morning I took a gamble that the roads would be ok for the truck. We took a back route to Marysville that is part of the Continental Divide mountain bike route. We headed down through Helena and then on up to Rimini. Rimini is under reclamation so we were turned back at the town site. So I scratch that off the list and on to the next campsite near the Basin MT area. I did some re-con late that afternoon and then returned to camp. The next morning we headed to Comet which I had checked the night before.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769596-S.jpg
This appeared to be a spring house and yes the spring was still flowing.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769597-M.jpg

Comet MT
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769598-S.jpg
to be continued

speedy
01-30-2007, 06:50 AM
Great pics, Brad. Thanks so much for sharing them.....Speedy

caver
02-01-2007, 04:10 PM
Lots of old houses in Comet with one newer home stuck off to one side. Dad stayed at Comet while I headed of on my motorcycle to the west portal of the Wickes RR tunnel. On a previous trip we had visited the East portal. This tunnel is over a mile in length.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769599-S.jpg

http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769600-M-1.jpg

Outside the west portal it seemed to be the local graveyard for elderly vehicles.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769601-S.jpg

I love this old truck.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769602-S.jpg

caver
02-01-2007, 04:31 PM
I went back to Comet and met up with Dad to finish exploring the old mill buildings. Major reclamation has occured here.
This huge boulder looked out of place. We assumed it it ended up there during reclamation blasting.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769603-S.jpg

Inside the old mill at Comet.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769604-S.jpg

I'm standing on the reclaimed area looking at the mill. You can see Comet on the other side of the road.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769605-S.jpg


Much of the history of the places I visited are covered in this book.
http://www.amazon.com/Montana-Mining-Ghost-Towns-Barbara/dp/1560371951/sr=8-1/qid=1170375596/ref=sr_1_1/105-5304543-8993204?ie=UTF8&s=books

We left Comet and retrieved the camper heading to http://www.fairmontrvresort.com/
to do some laundry.
I did ride some of the abandoned railroad grade in the Basin area. It often parallels I15. This is also part of the Continental Bicycle route.
to be continued

LauraA
02-01-2007, 04:39 PM
FANTASTIC report and pictures! Reading this is second only to actually being there. It's been raining here all week and this is just what the doctor ordered to chase away the winter blues. :)

TheCrow
02-01-2007, 04:46 PM
Nice thread, I hope to get out once warmer weather comes. Luckly my wife likes trips.

speedy
02-02-2007, 06:43 AM
Great pics, thanks, Brad......Speedy

caver
02-04-2007, 12:34 PM
With our laundry good for another week we departed towards Anaconda and stopped to view the smelter stack from the distant park honoring it. We also had a great breakfast in this town and then departed toward the Georgetown area. The first CG looked a bit shabby so we stopped at the second CG called Spring Hill. The tax collectors,,,ooops I mean "hosts" actually kept this place spotless. The cleanest pit toilets on the whole trip. It was a pretty gloomy day. I took off on the motorcycle in a light mist to explore the area. The Cable Mine road was gated so I noticed my GPS had a point of interest (POI)for the Cable Lookout Tower. Up the road shrouded in drizzle and fog I arrived at the old tower site to find a few relics and a lone pole people had fastened metal junk to. I found apice of metal junk on the ground and continued the tradition. Trying to find a back road to the ghost town of Red Lion I stopped at another POI called the Hidden lake Mine.
You can see the drizzle has quit and the fog is has lifted.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769607-S.jpg
The old boiler.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769608-S.jpg

Arriving at beautiful downtown Red Lion.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769609-S.jpg

Large building in Red Lion.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769610-S.jpg

caver
02-04-2007, 01:09 PM
This area was in fire restrictions so no evening campfire. After eating supper we still had some daylight left and decided to drive the truck over to the Philipsburg area. We had explored this area back in 2004 and I'm glad we went back. This may be the Durango Mine along Camp Creek.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769611-S-1.jpg
We discovered more stuff in an adjacent area we had overlooked on the previous trip.
This looked a little more modern and obviously not gold or silver they were processing.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769615-S.jpg

Electric motor for a crusher inside the mill.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769614-S.jpg

Not far from the mill was this large angular adit.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769616-S.jpg

We ran out of daylight and even followed one road that ended in an area we had been at on the previous trip. The truck is just too slow in exploring areas like this. We could see a large mine building in the distance but could never figure out how to get to it.

caver
02-10-2007, 12:49 PM
My computer seems to have a power supply problem so there may be some down time between reports. It's working now so I'll try and add some more to the trip. Our next destination was Sloway CG along the Clark Fork River. A nice spot but too close to an active railroad and I 90 for me. My first destination was Keystone. Not much there and private property. You see stuff in a book and say to yourself "I want to go there". The days goal was trying to find Pardee but either I misunderstood the authors information or just wasn't persistent enough. While near Keystone I notice what looked like tailings so I parked the bike and scrambled up a hill to find the Keystone Mine according to the GPS POI.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769617-S-1.jpg
I backtracked down to the town of Superior and followed Flat Creek up to the Iron Mountain Mill site. Some concrete foundations and not much else. Not far from there it looks like the adit was covered up. Steady mine soup oozing out of the area. I continued on up to a vague location called Pardee. The area I had marked showed no signs of mining activity and the shadows were getting long. Time to head back to camp. This day was a bit of a bust for me. This might be the Little Anaconda Mine.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769618-S.jpg

I wanted to see the Hiawatha Bike Trail and the St Paul Pass tunnel that it passes through. No pictures but worth the side trip if in the area. You can drive over the pass to see the other portal and continue on part of the trail. It was getting too late in the morning to rent a bike and ride this rails to trails so we pressed on to Salmon ID.
Stay tuned, in the next installment I revisit the old mine that sparked my curiosity as a 6-7 year old kid on a family vacation.

LauraA
02-10-2007, 01:05 PM
Brad, Your post is wonderful! You have a real knack for documenting and posting...can't wait 'til the next installment!

brian10x
02-10-2007, 01:36 PM
My computer seems to have a power supply problem so there may be some down time between reports.
Hiawatha Bike Trail and the St Paul Pass I revisit the old mine that sparked my curiosity as a 6-7 year old kid on a family vacation.
Please keep up the great work! Those are some fantastic towns and mines you've been to!
I dream of finds like that in my neck of the woods!

bad bob
02-10-2007, 01:46 PM
Nice posting Brad, thank you.

My old guide shows the following for Pardee:
From Superior on (I-90), take gravel north from American Legion Hall. Go 4 miles staying on Flat Creek when road forks.
bb.

one_bad_rover
02-10-2007, 02:50 PM
Beautiful pics, whats the state of Montanas stance on reclamaition? I know Oregon has a cease and desist on a lot of the reclamations, I assumed Montana had something similar with the massive amounts of historical mines throughout their state.

caver
02-10-2007, 09:05 PM
Bad Bob,
Here is my track log from that day.
I marked aplace called Pardee Camp but it took numerous trial and error road turns to get up there.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/128832183-M.jpg

caver
02-10-2007, 09:21 PM
Rover,

There is some reclamation going on in the state. Rimini, the whole town was having the top soil removed. I know from previous visits that Coolidge has had the mine tailings covered up with soil.

bad bob
02-10-2007, 11:28 PM
Interesting Brad.

If 1 inch = 1.5 miles, then Pardee must be much farther than 4 miles. Was that a road you followed or just made your own path? Looks like the road on my old directions ended at the sign marked "IronMo" on map (Iron Mountain?). I see Flat Creek, but doesn't appear to be road, or fork, so I'm guessing decades of non use caused the old road to vanish.
bb.

Flatiron
02-11-2007, 03:30 AM
I know that the biggest reclaimation project the State of Montana was working on,when I lived there, was the tailings piles near Ananconda that was an extensive project that lasted years. I believe I remember Jack Nicklaus or some other notable golfer designed a championship PGA golf course in the newly reclaimed area. I'm not sure many of the other mine sites in Montana received the attention the Anaconda project got. .........

caver
02-11-2007, 07:30 AM
Bad Bob,

The right fork dead ends right past the mill site. It does continue left on the road I followed.
http://www.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=Superior,+MT&ie=UTF8&z=16&ll=47.238482,-114.854432&spn=0.004502,0.016823&t=h&om=0

Johnnie
02-11-2007, 10:14 AM
With our laundry good for another week we departed towards Anaconda and stopped to view the smelter stack from the distant park honoring it. We also had a great breakfast in this town and then departed toward the Georgetown area. The first CG looked a bit shabby so we stopped at the second CG called Spring Hill. The tax collectors,,,ooops I mean "hosts" actually kept this place spotless. The cleanest pit toilets on the whole trip. It was a pretty gloomy day. I took off on the motorcycle in a light mist to explore the area. The Cable Mine road was gated so I noticed my GPS had a point of interest (POI)for the Cable Lookout Tower. Up the road shrouded in drizzle and fog I arrived at the old tower site to find a few relics and a lone pole people had fastened metal junk to. I found apice of metal junk on the ground and continued the tradition. Trying to find a back road to the ghost town of Red Lion I stopped at another POI called the Hidden lake Mine.
You can see the drizzle has quit and the fog is has lifted.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769607-S.jpg
The old boiler.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769608-S.jpg

Arriving at beautiful downtown Red Lion.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769609-S.jpg

Large building in Red Lion.
http://caver.smugmug.com/photos/96769610-S.jpg

great photos Brad, Keep them coming.

Johnnie & Sheilla

bad bob
02-11-2007, 01:22 PM
Great info and map Brad,
much thanks.
bb.

caver
08-10-2010, 06:02 PM
I never did finish this thread proper but one final destination was a mine up on the Idaho/Montana border. We visited it when I was about 6 and the year was maybe 1969? I think my Dad's slides have a date on them but it's not handy at the moment. We had a relative we visited in salmon Idaho and he took us up to the old Goldstone Mine. This is a little lower than Goldstone. The entrance was boarded up to the left. I think that is me trying to turn the old wheel. That looks like my Mom to the left. Both buildings are still there but the entrance has been blasted shut since we visited in 69.
http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/Mine2/226651347_DDd8x-M.jpg

The same building in 2006.
http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/P8280001/96769619_USQGh-M.jpg
The tracks lead into the rubble pile where they blasted it shut.
http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/P8280012/96769636_3qgXk-M.jpg

dwinslow
08-10-2010, 06:11 PM
Very nice presentation.

caver
08-10-2010, 06:12 PM
On up the hill is the Goldstone. This is what left an impression on my 6 year old mind that stuck with me all these years.

http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/oldmine/226651372_AokfR-L.jpg

What was left of it in 2006


http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/P8280009/96769628_2pknM-M.jpg

Another view of the mill.

http://caver.smugmug.com/Vacation/2006/P8280014/96769639_tVM7t-M.jpg

Angiebrewton
07-08-2016, 04:10 AM
Red Lion dates back to about 1875 when gold was discovered. A mill was built by the Red Lion Company in the late 1890's. Another mill was constructed in the early 1900's. Nearly 200 men worked in the two mills. The population of Red Lion reached about 500.*Submitted by: Kevin Heaney

The Red Lion Strike was made in the late 1880's. By 1890, there was a*
mine and a stamp mill at th site. The property was leased to the*
"Walkers of Philipsburg" in October of 1890. A 'six foot vein*
of gold' was discovered by the Walkers. The vein, and surrounding ore,*
was plentiful enough to run the mill at Red Lion, night and day, for six*
months. The publicity surrounding the Walkers' discovery led to the*
discovery of four additional mines - the 'Hannah;' 'Modoc;' 'American*
Flag;' and the ' Golden Eagle.' The Red Lion mining camp, run by the*
Golden Eagle Company, came into being at the turn of the century. The*
years of 19021908 were the most productive years in the Red Lion area.*
A 3,800 foot tramway was built to connect the mines to the mill. The*
'Hannah' mine produced gold, iron and copper. The mines were played out*
by 1913.