Historic Nevada Gold Mine for Sale

Buckeye Gold Mines

Mine Details

Commodity: Gold
Location: Nevada, USA
Terms: For Sale
Price: $95,000

Seller Website

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The Smoky Mountain Valley is known for its gold deposits. The famous Round Mountain Mine sits just across the valley, and has produced over 10,000,000 ounces of gold since it opened in 1906, and its still going. The Buckeye is a similar story in location and development. The mine has been worked for precious metals, unlike the mines up the canyon that were primarily prospected for Tungsten. The Buckeye mine shows very similar qualities to the Round Mountain Mine, ore being located in a wide vein of limestone. There is a lot of history up here and a lot of gold to be mined.

If you are looking for a rich gold mine with extensive reserves, set in the heart of gold country. This may be the site for you. The Buckeye is a massive complex of drifts on both sides of a steep and narrow canyon. In 1868 the mine was documented as having over 2000′ of workings. The mine has been worked intermittently up into 1958, which was the last documented operation. Gold was still the main export.

The claim covers a lot of land thanks to the steep canyon walls. A series of adits and shafts probe the mountain and expose a large ore body that can be traced throughout the workings. There is also a good amount of water that has been tapped somewhere in the lower levels. A slow flowing waterfall runs down the sides of the lowermost shaft, and has for years as evidenced by the thick moss that has grown down all sides of the shaft. Its depth and dereliction are unknown and the shaft was not explored.

At the base of the canyon there is a large old tipple and loading station that was reportedly used to ship the ore from the Buckeye out to Austin for processing as late as 1958. This is a large, expansive operation with a substantial lode that is still waiting to be worked.

There are remains of three, large, rock structures, which were likely houses, on the eastern edge of the claim. The old mine road breaks off from these houses. Up at the mines there is an assay house of sorts with foundations, remnants of a forge, bits of cupels and crucibles. At the assay house, a braided steel cable holds a 1930s era tram car. The car moves freely on the cable and if it was motivated by a small motor, could easily transport ores or people across the deep canyon.

On the opposite, or south side of the canyon, there are 2 adit entrances; one smaller, well cut, timbered entrance complete with signage and nails on the check out board. There is also a larger, double-wide adit entrance a few hundred feet below the small adit. The cabling and tram station are positioned here. There is no easy way up to these adits. A steep hike, bushwacking up the side of the mountain is your only option. It makes a good case for putting a small motor on the northside to motivate the tram car across.

A large adit on the north side is cut following the gold lode and shows very nice samples and ores inside. The lode runs along the spine and the base of the mine, the cut being made directly onto a fault line where the richest ores were found. A small raise near the back shoots up from a good sized stope that still shows good gold ores. The raise height is undetermined and it would take a pretty tall ladder to get into it. This drift ends at a little over 200′ at a face that has the blast pattern already cut and ready to load. Obviously they were not out of ores to work. The gold lode is easily identified and shows no sign of pinching out, but the mine has not been worked since 1958.

There is adequate room to park a limited number of vehicles at the claim, near the old assay house. The road up the canyon is in relatively good repair and can be navigated without issue with a good 4WD with clearance. It is wildly overgrown with Tamarisk so you will get some rocky mountain pin stripes in a full sized truck. It’s a secluded canyon that does not see a lot of traffic as evidenced by the old miners trash that is still all over the site: bottles, old signs and such.

The weather here is temperate for the most part. Winters are going to get a bit snow-packed in January and February but will be clear by March at the latest. There is clean, running water in the base of the canyon that is year round. Heavy vegetation – pines and large cedars – will provide plenty of wood for support of your mining operation.

The tailings have been separated into various piles around the claim. There is visible, native gold in the quartz in high grade piles. Also, some native silver and cubes of pyrite can be found with a bit of digging in the deeper piles.


76 miles outside of Tonopah. Surprisingly easy to drive right up to the claim. A full size vehicle can easily make it to the main mine camp. The roads are tightly shrouded in Tamerisk and will scratch up full sized vehicles. The roads around the claim could be cleared with some effort and it would be possible to drive around the north side of the canyon. The mines on the south side of the canyon have no defined road. Likely once the tram went in, the tram was the mode of transport over to these mines. It’s a steep, bushwhacking route up to the south mines until you are on the cliffs where the mines were worked.


There are a total of 6, interconnected mines on the claim. On the north side of the canyon there are 2 shafts and a single adit. A good chunk of rich tailings with gold, silver and some large pyrite cubes. On the south side of the canyon there are 3 large adits that have not been fully documented. An old, but stable tram line runs from the north side to the south side. This facilitates the navigation from the mines on one side of the canyon to the other. The mines are all cut on the same gold trend which runs north and south down the mountain range. The adits are clean and stable. The air was tested and cleared in the north adits. The assumption is the same on the south side, but we recommend a good air/4 gas monitor. One shaft on the north side is dry and decends at a 75 degree angle to where it opens up to surface lower in the canyon. There is a steep winze inside the shaft that was not documented. There is also a shaft on the north side that is taking in water at a good rate and has been for years. The sides of the shaft are covered in moss and vegetation. The shaft cuts down at about an 85 degree angle for at least 150′ before shifting to another angle. “The Buckeye is on a ledge cropping out on either side of Summit Canyon, very high on the mountain. Its course is about due north and south. The claim is on the north side of the canyon, and was located in September, 1865. Dip 64° west. The width varies, the vein matter being irregular. The ore seam is from a few inches to four feet in width. An incline follows the ledge north one hundred and five feet, entering the hill about ninety feet below the surface. At the depth of fifty feet a level extends from the incline fifty-five feet on the ledge. From the bottom of the incline another level follows the ledge eighty feet. The mine is drained by a tunnel connecting with the bottom of the incline, two hundred and eighty feet in length. The ore is chloride. Specimens of native silver in sheets and in coils of wire have been found. About the water level, sulphuret ore occurs. The base metals are gold, silver, iron, traces of copper, zinc and cadmium. The ore yields as high as $200 per ton. The country rock west is chlorite schist, which alternates with limestone to near the summit of the mountains, where argillaceous slates predominate. The east wall is dolomite, which also alternates with chlorite schist for some distance down the canyon east. The slate finally disappears, and the limestone on the north side of the canton forms a precipice from eight hundred to a thousand feet in height, and about perpendicular. There is fine supply of wood and water in this canyon.” (Nevada State Mineralogist, pp. 65-66). Reference: Nevada State Mineralogist. (1869). Nevada Sate Mineralogist’s Report for the years 1867 and 1868. Carson City, NV: Henry R. Mighels, State Printer.


The vein is encased in limestone, and, although it sometimes narrows down to a mere clay seam in the rock, it appears to be a true fissure vein. Its general width is five feet, occasionally reaching to seven. It has been developed by an incline following the dip of the ledge, which is westerly 65°, to the depth of 100 feet, and by different levels several hundred feet north and south. From these excavations a quantity of ore has been taken which has yielded, at the Austin mills, $106 per ton (Browne p. 415).

The price of gold in 1868 was $18.93. That equates to 5.6 ounces of gold per ton. Likely some of that value was in silver but likely less than a few dollars.. So, the gold per ton was probably closer to 5.0 ounces per ton.


Reports on the Mineral Resources of the United States – 1868
The Buckeye Mining Company is a New York company, and, under the superintendence of Mr. Stephen Kidd, is developing the Buckeye mine, situated in Summit canyon. The vein was discovered and located in 1865. The claim consists of 1,400 feet of the lode running north from the canyon. The vein is encased in limestone, and, although it sometimes narrows down to a mere clay seam in the rock, it appears to be a true fissure vein. Its general width is five feet, occasionally reaching to seven. It has been developed by an incline following the dip of the ledge, which is westerly 65°, to the depth of 100 feet, and by different levels several hundred feet north and south. From these excavations a quantity of ore has been taken which has yielded, at the Austin mills, $106 per ton (Browne p. 415).

The price of gold in 1868 was $18.93. That equates to 5.6 ounces of gold per ton. Likely some of that value was in silver but likely less than a few dollars.. So, the gold per ton was probably closer to 5.0 ounces per ton.
From a 1986 Report by Tingley of the NBMG.

The Buckeye Mine, at the mouth of Summit Canyon on the north side of the creek is similar to the Murphy property, but has less extensive workings. Old workings at the Buckeye explore a North 40 degrees East quartz vein which follows a shear zone in phyllite. Vein material on the dump contained clots of sphalorite with minor galena and pyrite.

References:
Browne, J. R., & United States. (1867). Mineral Resources of the States and Territories West of the Rocky Mountains. Washington: G.P.O.

Tingley, J. V., Quade, J. G., & United States. (1986). A mineral inventory of the Tonopah Resource Area, Battle Mountain District, Nevada. Reno, NV: Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology, University of Nevada-Reno.