Unnamed high-bench deposit (Dexter Creek-Dry Creek divide)

Past Producer in Alaska, United States with commodity Gold

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10308004
Record type Site
Current site name Unnamed high-bench deposit (Dexter Creek-Dry Creek divide)

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -165.34617, 64.56678 (WGS84)
Relative position This record describes high-level, auriferous gravel deposits on the divide between Dry Creek (NM249) and Wet Gulch, a north-flowing headwater tributary to Dexter Creek (NM303). It is at a surface elevation of about 575 feet and 4,500 feet northeast of the summit of Anvil Mountain in the NE1/4 section 6, T. 11 S., R. 33 W., Kateel River Meridian. It is approximately the same location as locality 125 of Cobb (1972 [MF 463]). The location is accurate to within about 500 feet.
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska


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) -165.34617, 64.56678

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = Auriferous high-level gravels on the Dry Creek-Dexter Creek divide are one of three closely related ancient placer deposits; the other two are at Summit (NM247) and Dexter Station (NM246). The main deposit on the Dry Creek-Dexter Creek divide appears to have been within a nearly north-south, gently incised channel in schist bedrock. It was developed by a series of shafts for a distance of about 2,000 feet. Pay extended up the flanks of the channel, where it was successfully mined (Collier and others, 1908, p. 208-209), although the flank deposits were not as rich as the deposits near the base of the channel. Near the divide, the gravel section was approximately 72 feet thick, consisting, from the top down, of 16 feet of muck and slide rock, 12 feet of somewhat auriferous washed gravel, 2 feet of sandy soil, 22 feet of soil, peat, and slide rock, and a pay section of 10 feet of stream gravel on decomposed schist bedrock (Collier and others, 1908, p. 208). Most of the pay was within 2 to 3.5 feet of bedrock and consisted mostly of sand containing well-rounded pebbles of schist, vein quartz, and marble. Gold was fairly coarse and well rounded. Much of the gravel was thawed and could be worked yearound from shallow timbered shafts. The paystreak contained from about 6 to 12 dollars in gold per cubic yard (gold at 20.67 dollars per ounce). Toward Dry Creek, the paystreak had poorly defined rims, and bedrock generally had a gentle slope to the north. These ancient gold deposits may be in stream channels of former drainage systems (Collier and others, 1908) or in ice-marginal drainages (Hopkins and others, 1960; Cobb, 1973 [B 1374, p. 83]; Nelson and Hopkins, 1972). The presence of erratic granite boulders and other exotic rock types suggests a glacial origin, but the exotic clasts are commonly in near-surface materials and not distributed throughout the high-level gravels (Moffit, 1913). The origin of these gravels thus still seems in question. The richness of some of the placers suggests extensive reworking, proximity to lode sources, or both. Bedrock is mostly schist, probably of early Paleozoic protolith age (Hummel, 1962 [MF 247]; Sainsbury, Hummel, and Hudson, 1972 [OFR 72-326]; Till and Dumoulin, 1994; Bundzten and others, 1994). Bedrock under the divide belongs to the porphyroclastic micaceous graphitic schist unit of Bundtzen and others (1994). Upper Dry Creek is underlain by felsic schist, possibly in fault contact with the porphryoclastic unit.
  • Age = Quaternary or possibly late Tertiary.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Past Producer

Comments on exploration

  • Status = Inactive

Mining district

District name Nome

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Most of the area was mined by drifting from shafts between 1902 and 1906. Deposits in upper Dry Creek were worked from the surface or from shallow shafts.

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF NM248

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

    Collier, A. J., Hess, F.L., Smith, P.S., and Brooks, A.H., 1908, The gold placers of parts of Seward Peninsula, Alaska, including the Nome, Council, Kougarok, Port Clarence, and Goodhope precincts: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 328, 343 p.

  • Deposit

    Moffit, F.H., 1913, Geology of the Nome and Grand Central quadrangles, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 533, 140 p.

  • Deposit

    Hopkins, D.M., MacNeil, F.S. and Leopold, E.B., 1960, The coastal plain at Nome, Alaska, A late Cenozoic type section for the Bering Sea region, in Chronology and climatology of the Quaternary: International Geological Congress, 21st, Copenhagen , Proceedings, Part 4, p. 46-57.

  • Deposit

    Hummel, C.L., 1962, Preliminary geologic map of the Nome C-1 quadrangle, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-247, 1 sheet, scale 1:63,360.

  • Deposit

    Sainsbury, C.L., Hummel, C.L., and Hudson, Travis, 1972, Reconnaissance geologic map of the Nome quadrangle, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 72-326, 28 p., 1 sheet, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., 1972, Metallic mineral resources map of the Nome quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-463, 2 sheets, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Nelson, C.H., and Hopkins, D.M., 1972, Sedimentary processes and distribution of particulate gold in the northern Bering Sea: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 689, 27 p., 1 plate.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., 1973, Placer deposits of Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 1374, 213 p.

  • Deposit

    Till, A.B., and Dumoulin, J.A, 1994, Geology of Seward Peninsula and St. Lawrence Island, in Plafker, G., and Berg, H.C., eds., The Geology of Alaska: Geological Society of America, The Geology of North America, DNAG, v. G-1, p. 141-152.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T.K., Reger, R.D., Laird, G.M., Pinney, D.S., Clautice, K.H., Liss, S.A., and Cruse, G.R., 1994, Progress report on the geology and mineral resources of the Nome mining district: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys, Public Data-File 94-39, 21 p., 2 sheets, scale 1:63,360.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = Collier and others, 1908

General comments

Subject category Comment text
Deposit Model Name = Alluvial placer Au; buried high-level placer deposits (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).

Reporter information

Type Date Name Affiliation Comment
Reporter 10-JUL-00 Hawley, C.C. and Hudson, Travis L. Hawley Resource Group