Little Creek

Mine, Inactive

Commodities and mineralogy

Main commodities Au
Other commodities Hg
Ore minerals cinnabar; gold

Geographic location

Quadrangle map, 1:250,000-scale ID
Quadrangle map, 1:63,360-scale A-6
Latitude 62.01816
Longitude -158.68975
Nearby scientific data Find additional scientific data near this location
Location and accuracy This gold placer extends for a mile or more along Little Creek, a north-flowing tributary of the Iditarod River. The coordinates are at the center of the deposit which is at an elevation of about 400 feet, about 0.6 mile south-southeast of the center of section 6, T. 23 N., R. 52 W., of the Seward Meridian. Little Creek is locality 15 of Cobb (1972 [MF 363]); also described in Cobb (1976 [OFR 76-576]).

Geologic setting

Geologic description

The Little Creek Mine is a placer gold-cinnabar deposit in a short tributary of the Iditarod River. The placer is a shallow deposit with 10 to 16 feet of gravel that is overlain by 3 to 10 feet of overburden. The deposit occurs entirely in the modern flood plain of Little Creek; no terrace deposits have been identified. The rocks in upper end of the placer are sandstone of the Upper Cretaceous, Kuskokwim Group. The lower part of the placer is underlain by the Iditarod volcanics (Miller and Bundtzen, 1994). The principal heavy minerals are fine-grained gold and locally abundant cinnabar, The gravels also contain abundant rounded fragments of vein quartz (Cady and others, 1955). Some gold has been mined during the exploration of the deposit, but there has been no mechanized mining on a significant scale (Spencer Lyman, oral communication, 1986; Morris Hofseth, oral communication, 1990).
Geologic map unit (-158.692155485277, 62.0174607711528)
Mineral deposit model Placer Au deposit (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
Mineral deposit model number 39a
Age of mineralization Probably Quaternary.

Production and reserves

Workings or exploration Placer gold was discovered on Little Creek in 1910 (Maddren, 1911). According to Maddren (1915), gravel from holes sunk to bedrock contained 1 or 2 cents in gold per bedrock foot but there had been no production. According to Cady and others (1955), test shafts were sunk about 13 feet to bedrock. Cady reported that samples assayed from a few cents to $1.00 per bedrock foot and that the grade of the deposit is consistent.
Indication of production Yes; small
Reserve estimates Undetermined.
Production notes Production may have occurred during exploration but there has never been any major mechanized mining on Little Creek (Spencer Lyman, oral communication, 1986; Morris Hofseth, oral communication, 1990).

References

MRDS Number A015059

References

Reporters T.K. Bundtzen (Pacific Rim Geological Consulting, Inc.), M.L. Miller (U.S. Geological Survey); and C.C. Hawley (Hawley Resource Group)
Last report date 5/25/2003