Sunday, August 18, 2002
Historic Resources and Abandoned Mines
Team North will be traveling through the Helena National Forest today, in an area which saw intense mining activity through the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This region of Montana was the site of so many major mineral discoveries that the influx of settlers sparked off the last major Indian war, with the Plains tribes whose lands the prospectors crossed en route to the gold fields.
Today these mountains are pocked with mine shafts, dotted with slag heaps, and traced with the signs of the long-gone boom days: cabins, ghost towns, sluices, rail tracks, and other relics of the mining era. The team will be meeting with a Forest Ranger to learn about dealing with the two problems that this heritage leaves us-- historic preservation and abandoned mine reclamation.