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Gold Mint Valley


According to paper work filed with the Alaska Department of Natural Resources J.B. Hatcher is credited with the discovery of the Gold Mint group of veins in the Hatcher Pass area.  Two veins, an upper and lower were located and the upper was worked by Hatcher for a time.  Somewhere along the way Hatcher sold out to Mr. Doyle of the Doyle Mining group and he proceed to build a stamp mill and tram lines to both the upper tunnel and the lower tunnel for processing.  The lower vein is reported to have yielded $50 to $100 per ton in gold (~ 1910).  The mines went idle again in 1931 following the stock market crash until May in 1938 as America was pulling herself out of the Great Depression.  Mr. Fred Johnson resumed operations in the Gold Mint group with the hope of work and the gleam of gold in his eye.  With three aerial trams utilizing five hundred pound buckets on up to 1800 feet of cable, a good working crusher with 10×12 inch jaws, and a 54 inch pelton water wheel generating power he went to work on the lower vein.  The camp consisted of a bunk house, cook house and other small buildings that were considered in good repair.

Today, you cannot find any of these items in the Valley below the Mints, but you can find solitude, golden sunsets, roaring falls, and alpine lakes and tarns.  Oh, and some pretty decent climbing is rumored to be in the area….

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