The most complete guide to Southern Nevada's mining history.

Chiquita Mine is located South of Las Vegas, Nevada. Nearest towns are Jean, Nevada,  Goodsprings, Nevada  and Sandy Valley, Nevada. Primary mining in the area included: copper, lead, silver, gold and zinc.

The valley and mine site have been extremely weathered the past couple of years (2012-2013).  The trail leading to the upper work deck is now undrivable.  Even walking up to the mine has its hazards with areas where the water has tunneled through the trail creating unstable clay bridges. 

Entry into the mine required rappelling into one of four collar shafts.  We discovered each shaft joined to one of three levels below.  Each shaft ended with a sump which is a continuation of a shaft to collect rain or ground water.  Above the sumps were drift levels.  A total of three lower levels.  One ended abruptly.  The other two were heavily stoped and likely productive.  We were also able to locate an adit and portal not visible from the upper work deck, but found it to be locked by a well made steel gate. 

After all these thousands of years, the clay within this mine is still soft enough to mold in your hand.  This  clay may have been the source of the humidity and not standing water from the sumps which were dry each time we visited.  This is one of the few mines in the area that was a primary gold mine.  The relationship between clay and gold is fairly predictable.  If there is gold around clay, it will mostly settle above as it works as a false bedrock. 

Before you head out there with buckets and picks, remember that there is a gate and signage.  This mine should be treated as private property.  Additionally, the layers of soft clay are along extreme angle faults making this mine prone to shifting and collapse.  Huge slabs of clay that were part of the back (ceilings) are now on the floor. 

There is very little wood shoring within the mine and what is there is soft and rotting because of the high humidity levels.  I'm sure there is still gold in the area, but in its current condition, this mine is extremely unsafe and not worth the risk of prospecting. 

I was recently contacted by a descendant of one of Chiquita Mine's original owners.   There wasn't much information to verify this mines identity and there was doubt that the mine in their photos was the same mine in our gallery.  The mine in the production photos appeared to be much larger than debris clues left on site.  Other than concrete foundations, there is little left to match.  After matching terrain in the distance we were able to confirm these mines were one  in the same. 

We knew Chiquita Mine had significant depth,  but greatly underestimated their level of production.  The Goodsprings, Nevada area had some large mines for their day, but the largest mines were producing lead, copper, zinc, and manganese.  This was a primary gold mine in a district not well known for their gold production. 

The listed spelling of this mine name is one of the more common complaints this site receives.  As always, I don't just make this stuff up as I go. I almost always include references.  As documented in the USGS Full Report linked at the top of this page, you'll notice that the agency made a correction in spelling.  This site is all about preserving the history.  In the first image, you can view the historic spelling in the original owners own handwriting.

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Chiquita Mine. Goodsprings, Nevada.

35°50'24.00"N  115°31'57.04"W
USGS Full Report

Primary Mining:   Gold
Secondary Mining:   Copper, Silver, Lead

Copyright © All rights reserved. Not for redistribution.

Copyright © All rights reserved.