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The most complete guide to Southern Nevada's mining history.
Allured Mine. Ivanpah, California
USGS Full Report
Primary Mining: Copper
Secondary Mining: Silver, Gold
Allured Mine is located Southwest of Las Vegas, Nevada. Nearest town is Primm, Nevada. Primary mining in the area included: Gold, copper, lead, silver, and zinc.
Located within the Mojave National Preserve, we expected this mine to be closed like so many others in the area. Allured Mine consists of three separate sites within the same valley and a few others little more than occurrences. Only one of the three production sites was sealed. That one by back-filling. The others remain open and potential fall hazards, so stay clear.
From a distance, you can see distinct layers of rock in our mountains. Within pockets of these layers , called stratum, is where much of the ores were collected. Standing above this valley, the pattern of prospect holes followed the stratum from the top of the hill, to the valley floor, and up and over the next hill. The dig pattern went on for miles.
We almost missed the Allured Mine site at the lowest point in the valley because the site on the hill was much more obvious. That was our first stop, but because of several nesting birds just inside the mine portal, we decided to return at a later date. While up there, we saw the collar shaft on the valley floor.
Because the collar shaft was on the valley floor, it was exposed to decades of weather. The wood support collar and ladder was dry, brittle, and collapsing. In most cases, I wouldn't have given much thought to rappelling because there were no safe rope anchor locations, but we weren't having any luck finding open mines within the preserve and curiosity got the best of us. Our lights weren't powerful enough to reach the bottom of the shaft with the sun almost directly above. I estimated a depth of at least 100 feet before we lost sight.
I backed our Jeep up, anchored to it and went down the rope. There wasn't much to see at the bottom. Total depth was around 100 feet before it leveled off. They mined in two directions about 10 feet before abandoning efforts. On the way up, something caught my eye. A copper vein almost a foot thick. Because these sides (ribs) collapsed after the mines were abandoned, this would have been a vein not visible during production. Primary mining at Allured Mine was copper. We see this often within abandoned mines. They were so close and off by inches.