Coffee Creek

Mine, Inactive

Commodities and mineralogy

Main commodities Au
Other commodities Hg
Ore minerals cerussite; cinnabar; gold; pyromorphite

Geographic location

Quadrangle map, 1:250,000-scale BN
Quadrangle map, 1:63,360-scale B-6
Latitude 65.313
Longitude -164.699
Nearby scientific data Find additional scientific data near this location
Location and accuracy Coffee Creek crosses the Nome-Taylor road at about mile 74 and again at almost mile 75. Placer mining took place for about 8,500 feet downstream from the Nome-Taylor road crossing at about mile 75. Coffee Creek merges with Quartz Creek to become Whelan Creek 10,000 feet downstream from the lower mine workings. Small tributaries to the mined section of Coffee Creek, including Dome Creek and Wonder Gulch (BN005), were mined adjacent to Coffee Creek and are included as part of this locality. Coffee Creek is location 45 of Cobb (1972; MF 417).

Geologic setting

Geologic description

Up to 25 feet of muck covered, gold-bearing stream gravels were initially mined in 1901 here (Collier, 1902). The lower part of the mined drainage is cut into alluvial terrace gravels, the Kougarok gravel, (Hopkins, 1963) but most of the mined drainage is on low grade Lower Paleozoic metasedimentary bedrock (Till and others, 1986). Kougarok gravel carries small amounts of gold (Sainsbury and others, 1969; Sainsbury, 1975) but at least part of the gold in Coffee Creek appears to be derived from local bedrock sources. A residual placer contains angular, spongy, and bright gold in 4 to 7 feet of angular schist and quartz and adjacent weathered schist bedrock (Collier and others, 1908) in the headwaters of Wonder Gulch (BN005). Small amounts of cinnabar are present in placer concentrate from Coffee Creek and Wonder Gulch; cerussite and pyromorphite are also present in concentrate from Wonder Gulch (Anderson, 1947).
Geologic map unit (-164.70166170053, 65.3122627848798)
Mineral deposit model Placer Au-PGE (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
Mineral deposit model number 39a
Age of mineralization Quaternary.

Production and reserves

Workings or exploration Various combinations of hand, scraper, dozer, dragline, and sluice surface operations have taken place along 8,500 feet of the Coffee Creek drainage and the adjacent 1,000 feet of Dome Creek, and 1,500 feet of Wonder Gulch (Sainsbury and others, 1969). Early mining included winter underground drifting and summer sluicing (Cobb, 1975).
Indication of production Yes; small