Nugget Gulch

Mine, Inactive

Commodities and mineralogy

Main commodities Au
Other commodities Bi; W
Ore minerals bismuth; gold; hematite; magnetite; pyrite; rutile; scheelite.
Gangue minerals garnet

Geographic location

Quadrangle map, 1:250,000-scale NM
Quadrangle map, 1:63,360-scale C-2
Latitude 64.6797
Longitude -165.652
Nearby scientific data Find additional scientific data near this location
Location and accuracy Nugget Gulch is an east tributary to Oregon Creek in section 27, T. 9 S., R. 35 W., Kateel River Meridian. The mouth of Oregon Creek is where the Nome-Teller road crosses Cripple River. The gulch was mined about due south of the former village of Oregon; some mining was also done about 1 mile upstream. The location given is in the mined segment southeast of Oregon. Nugget Gulch is localities 73 and 74 of Cobb (1972 [MF 463], 1978 [OFR 78-93]).

Geologic setting

Geologic description

Nugget Gulch was discovered and worked before 1901 (Brooks and others, 1901, p. 92, 95; Moffit, 1906, p. 136; Eakin, 1915, p. 369-370). A short distance above the junction of Nugget Gulch and Oregon Creek, a 25-foot-wide pay streak was discovered at a depth of 6 to 20 feet on a yellow clay, false bedrock on marble. The gold was relatively fine grained; most of the nuggets weighed less than 0.05 ounce. The gold occurred in a heavy mineral sand consisting mostly of fine octahedral magnetite. The concentrates also contained garnet, specular hematite, rutile, scheelite, native bismuth and pyrite, partly oxidized to hematite. Gold was also found intergrown with native bismuth (Collier and others, 1908, p. 213-214). A small deposit containing a similar suite of heavy minerals was mined in the 1903 season at a location about 1 mile above the mouth of the creek. The pay streak in upper Nugget Creek was 3 to 6 feet deep and from 30 to 50 feet wide. The upper pay streak was worked out in one season.
Bedrock in this area is primarily marble, but it locally includes partly oxidized pyritic greenstone. The marble unit exposed near the mouth of Nugget Gulch is the massive marble unit of Bundtzen and others (1994). About 1 mile above the mouth of the creek, marble is succeeded by a calc-schist unit.
Geologic map unit (-165.654624001993, 64.6789346628411)
Mineral deposit model Alluvial placer Au (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
Mineral deposit model number 39a
Age of mineralization Quaternary.

Production and reserves

Workings or exploration A placer discovery was made, probably by shafting, before 1901 (Brooks and others, 1901) and the deposit was mainly mined out before about 1906 (Collier and others, 1908). Two claims, reportedly for gold and bismuth, were active in 1958 (Heiner and Porter, 1972, Kardex site Kx 52-98; Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, 1982).
Indication of production Yes; small


MRDS Number A012872; D002572


Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, 1982, Mining claim location maps -- Nome quadrangle: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, 8 p., 3 sheets, scales 1:63,360 and 1:250,000.
Brooks, A.H., Richardson, G.B., Collier, A.J., and W.C. Mendenhall, 1901, A reconnaissance in the Cape Nome and adjacent gold fields of Seward Peninsula, Alaska, in 1900: U.S. Geological Survey Special Publication, p. 1-185, maps.
Heiner, L.E., and Porter, Eve, 1972, Alaska Mineral Properties, volume 2: University of Alaska, Mineral Industry Research Laboratory Report 24, 669 p.
Reporters C.C. Hawley and Travis L. Hudson
Last report date 3/12/2000