Lower Dry Creek

Producer in Alaska, United States with commodities Gold, Tungsten

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10308963
MRDS ID A012947
Record type Site
Current site name Lower Dry Creek
Related records 10233246, 10100994

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -165.34577, 64.52038 (WGS84)
Relative position This gold placer mine is at an elevation of about 100 feet on lower Dry Creek about 2.5 miles upstream of its mouth. The map location is just east of the center of section 19, T. 11 S., R. 33 W., Kateel River Meridian. This is locality 127 of Cobb (1972 [MF 463], 1978 [OFR 78-93]).
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska


Commodity Importance
Gold Primary
Tungsten Secondary

Materials information

Materials Type of material
Gold Ore
Hematite Ore
Pyrite Ore
Scheelite 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) -165.34577, 64.52038

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = Most of Dry Creek, starting about 1 mile upstream from its mouth, is auriferous. The placer deposit described in this record is the stretch from about Blind Gulch, where Dry Creek crosses the trend of Intermediate Beach (NM287), upstream to the mouth of Newton Gulch. Mining took place as early as 1900 and in most subsequent years to 1938 (Cobb, 1978 [OFR 78-93]). Most of the mining on the lower part of the creek was probably by open cut or dredging; dredges were reported to be operating on Dry Creek almost every year from 1920 to 1938. Dredging was resumed in this area in about 1975, and a dredge operated until 1994. The first deposits mined on lower Dry Creek were shallow and fairly small. A shallow pay streak about 1 mile upstream from the mouth was 150 feet wide and 3 to 5 feet thick on a clay bottom; it commonly ran a little more than 0.2 ounce of gold per cubic yard (Moffit, 1913, p. 90-91); concentrates included hematite, pyrite, and scheelite. These deposits were partly mined with dredges with digging capacity of 10 to 20 feet (Metcalfe and Tuck, 1942, p. 26). In later years, buried deposits were extensively mined along modern Dry Creek. These deposits include some related to Third Beach and Intermediate Beach; the eastern extension of Submarine Beach is probably near the mouth of Dry Creek (Moffit, 1913, p. 118). Dry Creek marks the eastern limit of the richest part of Third Beach (Metcalfe and Tuck, 1942). Dry Creek was an active drainage during Third Beach time, dumping gold-bearing alluvium directly into the Third Beach sea (Metcalfe and Tuck, 1942, p. 37). The deeper deposits below the Third Beach strandline and on abrasion platforms such as Intermediate Beach were mined until 1995 by dredges with as much as 80-foot digging capacity; locally, some of the deep deposits were naturally thawed.
  • Age = Quaternary.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Producer
Commodity type Metallic

Comments on exploration

  • Status = Active?

Mining district

District name Nome

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Most of the mining on the lower part of Dry Creek was probably by open cut or dredging; dredges were reported to be operating on Dry Creek almost every year from 1920 to 1938. Mining took place up to at least 1995.

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF NM264
USGS Mineral Resources Data System MRDS A012947
USGS Mineral Resources Data System MRDS D002596

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

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

  • Deposit

    Metcalfe, J.B., and Tuck, Ralph, 1942, Placer gold deposits of the Nome district, Alaska: Report for U.S. Smelting, Refining, and Mining Co., 175 p.

  • 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

    Cobb, E.H., 1978, Summary of references to mineral occurrences (other than mineral fuels and construction materials) in the Nome quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File report 78-93, 213 p.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = Moffit, 1913

General comments

Subject category Comment text
Deposit Model Name = Alluvial placer gold deposit (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a). Placer deposits were of several types including fluvial, marine, and complex fluvial-marine.

Reporter information

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