Jay Creek

Mine, Probably inactive

Alternative names

Eagle Gulch

Commodities and mineralogy

Main commodities Au
Other commodities Cu; Sb
Ore minerals chalcopyrite; gold; pyrite; stibnite
Gangue minerals quartz

Geographic location

Quadrangle map, 1:250,000-scale WI
Quadrangle map, 1:63,360-scale B-3
Latitude 67.4067
Longitude -151.324
Nearby scientific data Find additional scientific data near this location
Location and accuracy
Jay Creek is a southwest-flowing tributary of Rye Creek; it is about 6 miles southeast of Mathews Dome. Eagle Gulch, which is not named on the Wiseman B-3 topographic map, is a small, right-limit headwater tributary to Jay Creek. Although the exact location of the placer workings on Jay Creek is not known, Reed (1938) noted that the claims extended from No. 1 Below Discovery (which reached about 500 feet into Rye Creek) to No. 5 Above Discovery, and that the creek was mined from the mouth to the lower portion of No. 5 Above. The midpoint of mining is in the lower part of section 22, T. 30 N., R. 17 W. The location is accurate.
Kurtak and others (2002) and possibly others combine Jay Creek and its downstream continuation, Rye Creek (WI084), in their discussion of placer mining in this drainage.

Geologic setting

Geologic description

Gold was discovered on Jay Creek in 1904 but mining did not begin until 1912 (Reed, 1938). Jay Creek was once reputed to be the richest creek in the Wild River district. It is in a canyon that averages about 50 feet wide. Brooks (1916) reported that the pay streak was 30 feet wide and 4 feet thick. Reed (1938) reported that the gravel is thawed, very coarse grained, subangular, 3 to 12 feet thick, and that it contains numerous conglomerate boulders. The gold occurs throughout the gravel and in the upper foot of the bedrock. The gold is coarse, unworn, very dark colored, and about 970 fine. Kurtak and others (2002) and possibly others combine Jay Creek and its downstream continuum, Rye Creek (WI084), in discussing placer mining in this drainage.
From 1912 through at least 1935, the creek was mined by booming and shoveling into sluice boxes. Mining took place over 5 or 6 claim lengths from the mouth of the creek to the lower part of No. 5 Above Discovery. A mechanized mining operation was active on Jay Creek in 1998. A little gold was found in Jay Creek near the mouth of Eagle Gulch, a locally named, small, right-limit tributary to Jay Creek (Reed, 1938).
Reed (1938) estimated that the total production from Jay Creek through 1935 is about $200,000 (approximately 10,000 ounces). The ground that was mined had an average value of about $0.505 per square foot of bedrock (gold at $35 per ounce). There is no specific information available about mining specifically on Jay Creek in the 1990s as the same company mined both on Rye Creek (WI084) and Jay Creek (Kurtak and others, 2002). This early 10,000-ounce production figure conflicts with the Kurtak and others (2002) estimate that the combined total production of both the more productive(?) Rye Creek and Jay Creek 'could be as much as 3,537 ounces'.
Dillon (1982) reports a stibnite-quartz vein upstream from the placer, and Bliss and others (1988) speculate that the source of the gold is stibnite(?)-quartz veins in the drainage. The rocks in the vicinity consist of alternating bands of graphitic schist, micaceous schist, and greenstone schist (Reed, 1938).
Geologic map unit (-151.326738867307, 67.4062489290847)
Mineral deposit model Placer Au (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
Mineral deposit model number 39a
Age of mineralization Quaternary.

Production and reserves

Workings or exploration From 1912 through at least 1935, the creek was mined by booming and shoveling into sluice boxes. Mining took place over 5 or 6 claim lengths from the mouth of the creek to the lower part of No. 5 Above Discovery. A mechanized mining operation was active on Jay Creek in 1998 and probably a few years before.
Indication of production Yes; small
Reserve estimates None.
Production notes Reed (1938) estimated that the total production from Jay Creek through 1935 is about $200,000 (approximately 10,000 ounces). The ground that was mined had an average value of about $0.505 per square foot of bedrock (gold at $35 per ounce). There is no specific information available about mining specifically on Jay Creek in the 1990s as the same company mined both on Rye Creek (WI084) and Jay Creek (Kurtak and others, 2002). This early 10,000-ounce production figure conflicts with the Kurtak and others (2002) estimate that the combined total production of both the more productive(?) Rye Creek and Jay Creek 'could be as much as 3,537 ounces.'

References

MRDS Number A011948

References

Kurtak, J.M., Klieforth, R.F., Clark, J.M., and Maclean, E.A., 2002, Mineral investigations in the Koyukuk mining district, northern Alaska: Final Report: U.S. Bureau of Land Management Technical Report 50, v. 1 and 2, 845 p.
Smith, S.S., 1917, The mining industry in the Territory of Alaska during the calendar year 1915: U.S. Bureau of Mines Bulletin 142, 65 p.
Reporters J.M. Britton (Anchorage); D.J. Grybeck (Contractor, USGS)
Last report date 2/1/2011