Klery Creek Mine, Kiana District, Northwest Arctic Borough, Alaska, USA
|Latitude & Longitude (WGS84):||67° 10' 48'' North , 160° 23' 23'' West|
|Latitude & Longitude (decimal):||67.18, -160.389722222|
Klery Creek has a large drainage area and a confined stream bed which causes water to rise rapidly during heavy rains. This causes severe wash-out problems for placer mine operations.
Location: This location includes placer ground on Klery Creek extending from the confluence of Bear Creek upstream to the confluence of Gold Run Creek downstream, a distance of approximately 13 miles. The description of Klery Creek includes Joe Gulch, a small left-limit tributary about 2 miles long, and Caribou Creek, a small right-limit tributary about 3 miles long just north of Jack Creek. Coordinates are for the mining camp of Klery Creek in section 34, T. 21 N., R. 8 W., of the Kateel River Meridian. Cobb (1972, MF-386), location 6 and Schmidt and Allegro (1988), location 281.
Geology: Rocks in the area of Klery Creek include quartz-mica schist, mafic greenschist, calcareous schist, chloritic quartz schist, phyllite, graphitic schist and limestone of lower to mid-Paleozoic age. The limestone is bluish-white, thick bedded, fractured, and folded. The rocks are cut by steeply-dipping to vertical, milky quartz veins ranging from an inch to 30 feet wide. The bedrock in most of Klery Creek is schist. In the area of Klery Creek camp and downstream for perhaps 1/2 mile bedrock is a massive, much fractured, steeply-dipping limestone which transversely intersects the creek (Smith, 1913). The gold placer deposits along Klery Creek are both in stream channel and bench deposits. Some of the richer deposits may have resulted from the reworking and reconcentrating of gold eroded from a paleo-channel. Smith (1911) reported two types of gold. One is coarse, angular, dark in color and often attached to or enclosed by quartz or black, graphitic schist . This type of gold occurs in a few locations along the streambed and in bench deposits. It is thought to be derived from the paleo-channel. Gold forms filaments in the black schist country rock, indicating that some of the placer gold was derived from this unit (Smith, 1913). The other type of gold is very fine and brightly colored. It is the more common gold found on the creek. An 8.5-ounce nugget of this type was found during the 1915 mining season (Brooks, 1916). Pay gravels from 12 to 18 inches thick overlie schist bedrock. The pay gravels are overlain by 4 to 5 feet of overburden. During mining, the upper 1 to 2 feet of bedrock is taken up and processed. Depth to pay in the bench deposits varies from 6 to 20 feet. At the mouth of Klery Creek about 500 feet southeast of the mouth of Bear Creek, a shaft was sunk to a depth of 135 feet in frozen ground without hitting bedrock (Reed, 1932). The ground on Klery Creek was said to run $1.10 per cubic yard in 1933 (gold at $20.67/ounce). This was a combination of both coarse and fine gold from a depth of 14 to 30 feet (Reed, 1932). Fineness of the coarse gold from Klery Creek was determined as 888.5 or a value of $18.50 per ounce. The fine gold, although not assayed, has a higher gold tenor and was worth $18.37 per ounce (Smith, 1913). Concentrates contained much magnetite, some ilmenite, pyrite, limonite and very little garnet (Cobb and others, 1981). Three pan concentrate samples collected from the central portion of Klery Creek in 1978 contained tungsten values ranging from 10 to 18 ppm (Degenhart and others, 1978).
Workings: Gold was first discovered on Klery Creek in 1909. Placer deposits were worked more or less continuously up to World War II. Mining operations resumed in the late 1940's when the ground was worked with a 3-cubic-yard dredge. The dredge worked for 6 years and was abandoned on the creek. In the late 1980's a small mine was in operation just upstream from the mining camp on Klery Creek for several years.
Alteration: Limonite thought to be oxidized from pyrite.
Production: Production from Klery Creek through 1931 estimated at 31,300 ounces (Schmidt and Allegro, 1988).
Commodities (Major) - Au; (Minor) - W
Development Status: Yes; small
Deposit Model: Placer Au (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 39a).
1 valid mineral.
This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.
Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org
|Phanerozoic - Proterozoic|
0 - 2500 Ma
|Sedimentary; Sedimentary: undivided|
Age: to Quaternary (0 - 2500 Ma)
Description: Brooks Range, Chukotka, Arctic Shelf, Brooks Range; Seward, western Chukotka
Comments: Orogen, fold-thrust belt, folded region; Wilson & Hults, unpublished compilation, 2007-08
Reference: J.C. Harrison, M.R. St-Onge, O.V. Petrov, S.I. Strelnikov, B.G. Lopatin, F.H. Wilson, S. Tella, D. Paul, T. Lynds, S.P. Shokalsky, C.K. Hults, S. Bergman, H.F. Jepsen, and A. Solli. Geological map of the Arctic. doi:10.4095/287868. Geological Survey of Canada Map 2159A. 
|Proterozoic - Devonian|
541 - 419.2 Ma
|Calcareous schist of Brooks Range|
Age: Pridoli (541 - 419.2 Ma)
Reference: Wilson, F.H., Hults, C.P., Mull, C.G, and Karl, S.M. (compilers). Geologic map of Alaska. doi: 10.3133/sim3340. U.S. Geological Survey Scientific Investigations Map 3340, pamphlet 196.