Totatlanika River

Past Producer in Alaska, United States with commodity Gold

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10307451
Record type Site
Current site name Totatlanika River

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -148.50088, 64.09263 (WGS84)
Relative position Placer claims have been staked over a distance of about 20 miles along the Totatlanika River from California Creek to just above the McCuen Gulch. Mining in the early 1900's took place in the middle of the basin, between the head of Murphy Canyon and a point about half a mile above the mouth of Homestake Creek (Maddren, 1918, p. 388). The coordinates given are the approximate center of the portion of the river that was mined (see sec. 34, T. 9 S., R. 5 W., Fairbanks Meridian).
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska

Commodities

Commodity Importance
Gold Primary

Materials information

Materials Type of material
Gold Ore

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

Nearby scientific data

(1) -148.50088, 64.09263

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = The discovery of placer gold in the Totatlanika valley took place at the mouth of McCuen Gulch in 1905 (Maddren, 1918, p. 387-388). Productive mining in the early 1900's took place in the middle of the basin between the head of Murphy Canyon and a point about half a mile above the mouth of Homestake Creek (Maddren, 1918, p. 388). Gold colors could be obtained at almost any point in the stream gravels along upper Totatlanika River from its junction with California Creek to a point above McCuen Gulch, a distance of about 20 miles (Maddren, 1918, p. 388). Gold has been found in gravel, on bedrock, and in bedrock crevices (Prindle, 1907). The gold varies from 828 to 863 fine (Glover, 1950). In the late 1980's and early 1990's, fine-grained gold was recovered by a modern placer mine (Bundtzen and others, 1991, p. 34). Above and at the mouth of Homestake Creek, the Totatlanika River is underlain by the Keevy Peak Formation, which consists of quartz-sericite schist, quartzite, purple and green schist and slate, arkosic gritlike schist, marble, and calcareous schist. The river then flows through the Moose Creek Member of the Totatlanika Schist, which consists of yellow quartz-orthoclase gneiss and schist. The remainder of the river is predominantly underlain by gray quartz-orthoclase gneiss and augen gneiss of the California Creek Member of the Totatlanika Schist (Wahrhaftig, 1970 [GQ-810]).
  • Age = Quaternary placer.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Past Producer

Mining district

District name Bonnifield

Comments on the production information

  • Production Notes = There is no record of the amount of production from mining that took place intermittently from 1905 to 1940 or from the recent activity in the 1980's and 1990's.

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Mining began in 1905 and continued intermittently until 1940 (Cobb, 1976 [OFR 76-662, p. 149]). In the late 1980's and early 1990's, fine-grained gold was recovered by a modern placer mine (Bundtzen and others, 1991, p. 34).

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF FB141

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

    Prindle, L.M., 1907, The Bonnifield and Kantishna regions, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 314-L, p. 205-226.

  • Deposit

    Brooks, A.H., 1911, The Mount McKinley region, Alaska, with descriptions of the igneous rocks and of the Bonnifield and Kantishna districts by L.M. Prindle: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 70, 234 p.

  • Deposit

    Capps, S.R., 1911, Mineral resources of the Bonnifield region: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 480-H, p. 218-235.

  • Deposit

    Maddren, A.G., 1918, Gold placers near the Nenana coal field: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 662, p. 363-402.

  • Deposit

    Brooks, A.H. and Capps, S.R., 1924, Mineral industry in Alaska, 1922: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 755, p. 1-56.

  • Deposit

    Capps, S.R., 1924, Geology and mineral resources of the region traversed by the Alaska Railroad: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 755-C, p. 73-150.

  • Deposit

    Moffit, F.H., 1933, Mining developments in the Tatlanika and Totatlanika basins: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 836-D, p. 339-345.

  • Deposit

    Smith, P.S., 1939, Mineral industry of Alaska in 1938: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 917-A, p. 1-113.

  • Deposit

    Glover, A.E., 1950, Placer gold fineness: Alaska Territorial Department of Mines Miscellaneous Report 195-1, 38 p.

  • Deposit

    Wahrhaftig, Clyde, 1970, Geologic map of the Fairbanks A-4 quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Geologic Quadrangle Map GQ-810, 1 sheet, scale 1:63:360.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., 1976, Summary of references to mineral occurrences (other than mineral fuels and construction materials) in the Fairbanks quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 76-662, 174 p.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T.K., Swainbank, R.C., Deagen, J.R., and Moore, J.L., 1991, Alaska's mineral industry 1990: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Special Report SR 45, 100 p.

  • Deposit

    Capps, S.R., 1912, The Bonnifield region, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 501, 64 p., 1 sheet, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T. K., Swainbank, R. C., Wood, J. E., and Clough, A. H., 1991, Alaska's mineral industry 1991: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Special Report 46, 89 p.

  • Deposit

    Smith, P.S., 1942, Mineral industry of Alaska in 1940: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 933-A, p. 1-102.

  • Deposit

    Smith, P.S., 1941, Mineral industry of Alaska in 1939: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 926-A, p. 1-106.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = Maddren, 1918

General comments

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

Reporter information

Type Date Name Affiliation Comment
Reporter 31-JUL-01 J.R. Guidetti Schaefer and C.J. Freeman Avalon Development Corporation