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La Gallega Mine, Ojén lherzolite massif, Ojén, Málaga, Andalusia, Spain

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Location is approximate, estimate based on other nearby localities.
Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 36° North , 4° West (est.)
Margin of Error:~11km
Other regions containing this locality:Iberian Peninsula
Locality type:Mine
Köppen climate type:Csa : Hot-summer Mediterranean climate
Name(s) in local language(s):Mina La Gallega, Macizo Lherzolítico Ojén. Sierra Alpujata

Chromium-nickel mining group located southeast of Ojén village, at roughly 8km from the village center across local track roads.

Mineralization is hosted in Cr-pyroxenites and discordant cordierite felsic veins included in the Ojén Iherzolite massif (Alpujata Peridotite Massif, Ronda massif, Betic Cordillera, southern Spain). The origin of Cr-Ni ores at La Gallega mine is related to magmatic segregation of immiscible arsenide liquid, between oxi-arsenide phase and low-density silicate phase. At later stages, the original immiscible oxi-arsenide liquid segregated two fractions; one enriched in chromite and the second enriched in nickel arsenide, where chromite formed at an early stage with olivine-pyroxene, according to Oen (1973) between 1300°C and 950°C for chromite, and the later phase is featured by nickeline-maucherite (≤800°C, Oen et al., 1971).

Mineralization formed as nickeline-chromite-maucherite veins within greenish-grey massive cordierite dykes, belonging to alpine spinel-garnet lherzolites type.
Late serpentinization occurred very deeply within the jointed peridotite massif forming secondary nickel minerals, the disintegration and weathering of primary sulfides-arsenides, and low-temperature hydrothermal metamorphic talc-magnesite mineralization. The mine represents in conjunction with Carratraca district (Los Jarales), the most relevant nickel deposit in Spain during the period years 1940-1960. The low levels of the mine, worked by solid reinforced box-work concrete shafts, are currently flooding and are inaccessible.

The chromium-nickel district at the site is represented by two major groups: la Gallega I where the main adit is developed more than 150 meters in length with pillars and room-chamber geometry; and la Gallega II at higher levels, mainly worked with dangerous adits emplaced in decomposed, highly fractured peridotite and connected with lower levels across shafts and steep ramps called "Trancadas" in Spanish.

Mineral List

28 valid minerals. 1 (TL) - type locality of valid minerals.

This page contains all mineral locality references listed on This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


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IGME (1978) Estudio de las posibilidades mineras de los macizos ultrabasicos de Málaga (Spain). Colección informes 181 pages. Mining survey report. Full district maps.
Economic Geology (1990) 85: 112-132.
Gervilla Linares, F. (1990) Mineralizaciones magmáticas ligadas a la evolución de las rocas ultramáficas de la Serranía de Ronda (Málaga-Spain). Thesis Granada University Spain. 189 pages.
Garuti, G., Gazzotti, M., and Torres-Ruiz, J. (1995) Iridium, rhodium, and platinum sulfides in chromitites from the ultramafic massifs of Finero, Italy, and Ojen, Spain. Canadian Mineralogist: 33: 509-520.
Torres-Ruiz, J., Garuti, G., Gazzotti, M., Gervilla, F., and Hach-Alí, P.F. (1996) Platinum-group minerals in chromitites from the Ojen Iherzolite massif (Serrania de Ronda), Betic Cordillera, southern Spain. Mineralogy and Petrology: 56: 25-50.
Romero Silva, J.C. (2001) Rasgos generales de los yacimientos metálicos de la provincia de Malaga. Comunicación del XXI Congreso de la Sociedad Española de MIneralogia. Edita Universidad de Málaga-Spain.
Romero Silva, J.C. (2003) Minerales y Rocas de la provincia de Malaga. Edita CEDMA County council of Málaga. 318pp. 1 map.

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