Up at the top of the Tioga pass,
not far from the 395 is what is
left of the Bennetville Mine. It was a speculative venture that never
produced any gold or silver ore, though at least three different
companies tried. If you have a good map, it is easy to find, although
the trailhead can be a little elusive. It's about a 1 mile hike off of
the road and it is a fairly easy hike.
is something that marks the trailhead, although in the summer, when the
brush grows, it may be easy to miss. This is a piece of equipment used
for as part of the mining operations. As
you get close, from the trail looking right, you will see a couple of
the old miner's cabins, rebuilt by the Forest Service. Looking ahead
and a bit to the left are the telltale signs of a tailings pile.
As the trail winds around, you will pass a pretty waterfall. This water
leads to a nearby stream where they probably got their water for the
A steady stream of water flows from the mine adit (shaft). Probably the
result of snow melt above seeping through the rocks. No matter how hot
it is outside, stepping to the mouth of the adit is like natures air
conditioner. Note the wood in the water in the shaft. Those are what is
left of the support timbers. Not a good idea to go in there with no
support timbers in place. Not to mention the water is about ankle deep
and very cold.
This appears to be a
ventilation shaft as it is much smaller than the
mine shaft itself.
A 2 stamp mill and some of the other equipment sits where it was
abandoned many years ago.
This is the view from the adit. This is what a miner would be seeing
after a long day or night in the mine. It is a beautiful view.
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