Rainy Creek Mine, Kantishna District, Denali Borough, Alaska, USA
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Location: Rainy Creek (Cobb, 1980 [OFR 80-363]) rises against unnamed ridges south and west of Glacier Creek, and drains the southeast flank of the Kantishna Hills. The creek is about 2 1/2 miles long; it flows over a half-mile-long fan above its junction with Moose Creek. The location is on Rainy Creek in the northwest corner of section 14, T. 16 S., R. 17 W., Fairbanks Meridian. It is about on the boundary between the R6 and R7 claims located in 1966 (Heiner and Porter, 1972, KX 66-115), and between the R1 and R2 gold placer resource blocks of Thornsberry, McKee, and Salisbury (1984, fig. K-3; Levell, 1984 [v. 2]).
Geology: The main, south-southeast-flowing, segment of Rainy Creek is controlled by the same fault that controls the course of upper Yellow Creek (MM079) (Thornsberry, McKee, and Salisbury, 1984, fig. K-2). In upper Rainy Creek, this fault juxtaposes Spruce Creek lithologies (to the east) against Birch Creek Schist. Lower Rainy Creek cuts Birch Creek Schist to the point where it begins to flow across an alluvial fan, about 1/2 mile above Moose Creek (Hawley and Associates, 1978; Bundtzen, 1981; Thornsberry, McKee, and Salisbury, 1984, fig. K-2). Upper Rainy Creek is steep, with a gradient of more than 300 feet per mile. The uppermost unnamed east fork and the segment that trends south-southeast contain thin, irregular deposits of angular-cobble alluvium. In the lower course of the creek, the alluvial deposits are bordered by terrace gravels. Little is known about the placer deposits in Rainy Creek. One operation was reported in 1922 (Davis, 1923). The unnamed headwater east fork drains an area of lode deposits, such as MM086, MM090, MM093, and MM095. Small colluvial and alluvial deposits derived from those lodes probably occurred in the upper part of the creek and presumably were mined in the early years of the district. In 1983, an operation was being set up to test alluvium in the fan near the mouth of the creek, but mining had not started when the project was visited by Levell (1984, v. 2).
Workings: The Rainy Creek placer deposit was discovered and mining was in progress in 1922 (Davis, 1923), but there has been little recorded production. The lower course of the creek was explored in 1983, but there is no public information about the results of that work.
Production: Unknown, but probably a maximum of 500 ounces of gold.
Reserves: Levell (1984, v. 2) estimated a total of 5000 cubic yards of high-potential placer resources on ground claimed in 1983.
Commodities (Major) - Au
Development Status: Yes; small
Deposit Model: Au-PGE placer (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
1 entry listed. 1 valid mineral.
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Bundtzen, T.K., 1981, Geology and mineral deposits of the Kantishna Hills, Mt. McKinley quadrangle, Alaska: M. S. Thesis, University of Alaska, College, Alaska, 238 p. Cobb, E.H., 1980, Summary of references to mineral occurrences (other than mineral fuels and construction materials) in the Mount McKinley quadrangle, Alaska: U. S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 80-363, 150 p. Cox, D.P., and Singer, D.A., eds., 1986, Mineral deposit models: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 1693, 379 p. Davis, J. A., 1923, The Kantishna region, Alaska, in Stewart, B. D., Annual Report of the Mine Inspector to the Governor of Alaska, 1922: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys AR-1922. Hawley, C. C. and Associates, Inc, 1978, Mineral appraisal of lands adjacent to Mt. McKinley National Park, Alaska: U. S. Bureau of Mines Open-File Report 24-78, 275 p. (paged by sections). Heiner, L.E., and Porter, Eve, 1972, Alaska Mineral Properties, volume 2: University of Alaska, Mineral Industry Research Laboratory Report 24, 669 p. Levell, J. H., 1984, Appendix A, Placer, in 1983 Mineral Resource Studies: Kantishna Hills and Dunkle mine areas, Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska: U. S. Bureau of Mines Open-File Report 129-84, Vol. 2, p. 1-219. Thornsberry, V. V., McKee, C. J., and Salisbury, W. G., eds, 1984, 1983 Mineral Resource Studies: Kantishna Hills and Dunkle Mine Areas, Denali National Park and Preserve, Alaska: U. S. Bureau of Mines Open-File Report 129-84. 3 Volumes: v. 1, Text; v. 2, Appendices; v. 3, Maps. Prepared by Salisbury & Dietz, Inc., Spokane, WA.