Bear Creek (lower)

Past Producer in Alaska, United States with commodities Gold, Platinum

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10000248
MRDS ID A010288
Record type Site
Current site name Bear Creek (lower)
Related records 10136990

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -161.13271, 59.40927 (WGS84)
Relative position Bear Creek is a south tributary of Canyon Creek. Its confluence with Canyon Creek is 3/4 mile downstream of the outlet of Canyon Lake. This placer mine, 3/4 mile upstream of the confluence of Bear and Canyon Creeks, is the lower of two mines located on Bear Creek. It is locality 16 of Hoare and Cobb (1977) and of Cobb and Condon (1972).
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska


Commodity Importance
Gold Primary
Platinum Secondary

Comments on the commodity information

  • Ore Material = PGE

Materials information

Materials Type of material
Gold Ore


  • (Local) Local iron-staining and cementation of gravels.

Mineral occurrence model information

Model code 119
USGS model code 39a
BC deposit profile C01. C02
Deposit model name Placer Au-PGE
Mark3 model number 54

Host and associated rocks

  • Host or associated Associated
    Rock type Plutonic Rock > Granitoid > Granite
    Stratigraphic age (youngest) Pliocene
    Stratigraphic age (youngest) Late Cretaceous
  • Host or associated Host
    Rock type Volcanic Rock (Aphanitic)
    Rock unit name Gemuk Group
    Rock description Gemuk Group

Nearby scientific data

(1) -161.13271, 59.40927

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = Placer gold was discovered on Bear Creek as early as 1916 and mining was reported intermittently up to 1934 (Hoare and Coonrad, 1978). This site is the lower of two placer mine locations on Bear Creek shown by Cobb and Condon (1972). Harrington (1921) visited Bear Creek in 1919 and reported that initial mining had opened up a 15- by 50-foot pit, in which 2 to 3 feet of black, clayey muck overlay 2 to 5 feet of gravel. The gravel was post-glacial, and consisted mostly of locally derived, iron-stained and cemented sedimentary material; plutonic rock fragments were not present. Only a few very small colors were obtained in pans taken from the base of the gravels (not necessarily on bedrock). Fechner (1988) collected 4 samples of sediments in the Bear Creek drainage; these samples contained a trace to 0.624 ounce of gold per ton. A sample of felsic intrusive rock, apparently float (Fechner, 1988, sample 44), contained 725 ppb gold. Minor platinum was recovered with the gold from Bear Creek and some prospecting for platinum was completed here by the Goodnews Bay Mining Company (Mertie, 1969, p. 89). An analysis of PGE material recovered from Bear Creek showed it to contain 72.82 percent platinum, 15.58 percent iridium, 8.17 percent osmium, 2.29 prcent ruthenium, 0.78 percent rhodium, and 0.36 percent palladium (Mertie, 1969, Table 38). Bedrock in the area includes Paleozoic and Mesozoic sedimentary and volcanic rocks locally intruded by Upper Cretaceous to Lower Tertiary granitic rocks and Jurassic mafic/ultramafic plutonic rocks (Hoare and Coonrad, 1978).
  • Age = Quaternary.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Past Producer
Commodity type Metallic

Comments on exploration

  • Status = Probably inactive

Mining district

District name Goodnews Bay

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Small-scale placer mine workings are probably present at this locality.

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Mineral Resources Data System MRDS A010288
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF GO016

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

    Mertie, J.B., Jr., 1969, Economic geology of platinum minerals: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 630, 120 p.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., and Condon, W.H., 1972, Metallic mineral resources map of the Goodnews quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-447, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Hoare, J.M., and Cobb, E.H., 1977, Mineral occurrences (other than mineral fuels and construction materials) in the Bethel, Goodnews, and Russian Mission quadrangles, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 77-156, 98 p.

  • Deposit

    Hoare, J.M., and Coonrad, W.L., 1978, Geologic map of the Goodnews and Hagemeister Island quadrangles region, southwestern Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 78-9-B, two sheets, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Fechner, S.A., 1988, Bureau of Mines mineral investigation of the Goodnews Bay mining district, Alaska: U.S. Bureau of Mines Open-File Report 1-88, 230 p.

  • Deposit

    Harrington, G.L., 1921, Mineral resources of the Goodnews Bay region: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 714-E, p. 207-228.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = Hoare and Cobb, 1977

General comments

Subject category Comment text
Deposit Model Name = Placer Au-PGE (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a)

Reporter information

Type Date Name Affiliation Comment
Reporter 20-MAR-2001 Travis L. Hudson Applied Geology