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Monte Blanco Mine (Monte Blanco deposit; Monte Blanco adit), Monte Blanco, Black Mts, Amargosa Range, Inyo Co., California, USA
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Monte Blanco Mine, Monte Blanco, Black Mts, Amargosa Range, Inyo Co., California, USA

Photo: John Sobolewski
Latitude: 36°22'46"N
Longitude: 116°46'4"W
A former borate mine located in the NE¼NE¼ sec. 17, T26N, R2E, SBM, on the E face of Monte Blanco, eastern margin of the Black Mountains, on National Park Service wilderness land (Death Valley National Park/Death Valley Wilderness). First operated in 1915. Owned by the U.S. Borax and Chemical Co. (1976). MRDS database stated accuracy for this location is 1,000 meters.

NOTE: The coordinates provided are for the exact location reflected on the topo map as a group of mining symbols (adits).

Mineralization is a Miocene borate deposit (Mineral occurrence model information: Model code 260; USGS model code: 35b.3; Deposit model name: Lacustrine borates), hosted in rocks of the Miocene Furnace Creek Formation (shale, limestone). The deposit crops out. Associated rocks include Pliocene-Miocene basalts. Local rocks include Tertiary nonmarine rocks, undivided.

Local geologic structures include a fault.

This mine is barely a mine and might more properly be called a prospect. It consists of a short tunnel with a couple of little side tunnels of no more than eight or ten feet long. It is best known for its reticulated primary meyerhofferite specimens. All of them are pretty small and I have never seen anything much larger than a minature. It is also home of probably the best specimens of meyerhofferite after inyoite, in most of which the inyoite has been completely altered to white meyerhofferite. The largest of these specimens is perhaps 30 to 40 cm though most are smaller. The pseudomorphs can measure up to 10 cm. There is also abundant drusy colemanite at this prospect/mine.
Rock Currier 2013.

Reserve-Resource data are found in: Evans, James R., G.C. Taylor, and J.S. Rapp (1976).

Mineral List

Inyoite (TL)
Meyerhofferite (TL)

8 entries listed. 8 valid minerals. 2 type localities (valid minerals).

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Journal of the Washington Academy of Science (1914): 4: 354-356.

Schaller, Waldemar Theodore (1916b), Inyoite and meyerhofferite, two new calcium borates: USGS Bulletin 610: 35.

Foshag, William Frederick (1921), The origin of the colemanite deposits of California: Economic Geology: 16: 200.

Foshag, William Frederick (1924a), Famous mineral localities: Furnace Creek, Death Valley, California: American Mineralogist: 9: 10.

Foshag, William Frederick (1924), The world’s biggest borax deposits (California and Nevada): Engineering & Mining Journal: 118: 420.

Palache, C., Berman, H., & Frondel, C. (1951), The System of Mineralogy of James Dwight Dana and Edward Salisbury Dana, Yale University 1837-1892, 7th. edition, Volume II: 359.

Murdoch, Joseph & Robert W. Webb (1966), Minerals of California, Centennial Volume (1866-1966): California Division Mines & Geology Bulletin 189: 264, 376.

Evans, James R., G.C. Taylor, and J.S. Rapp (1976) Mines and mineral deposits in Death Valley National Monument. California Division Mines and Geology Special Report 125: 61 pp.: 28.

Pemberton, H. Earl (1983), Minerals of California; Van Nostrand Reinholt Press.

Tschernich, R. (1992): Zeolites of the World: 64.

USGS (2005), Mineral Resources Data System (MRDS): U.S. Geological Survey, Reston, Virginia, loc. file ID #10102207 & 10139460.

U.S. Bureau of Mines, Minerals Availability System (MAS) file ID #0060271265.

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Copyright © Jolyon Ralph and Ida Chau 1993-2014. Site Map. Locality, mineral & photograph data are the copyright of the individuals who submitted them. Site hosted & developed by Jolyon Ralph. Mindat.org is an online information resource dedicated to providing free mineralogical information to all. Mindat relies on the contributions of thousands of members and supporters. Mindat does not offer minerals for sale. If you would like to add information to improve the quality of our database, then click here to register.
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