Gold and Mineral Mines of Montana

Historic Gold Flint Lode

20.66 Acre Lode Claim – Homestake District – Silver Bow County, Montana

Gold Flint Mine Portal

Portal opening before our surveyors enlarged the opening.

The Historic Gold Flint Lode Mine for sale, a 20.66 Acre Unpatented Lode Mining Claim. The claim is located just outside of Butte, Montana and has been properly marked. All claims have been carefully surveyed, mapped and researched. MMC #240267

Gold Flint Portal

Portal after being dug out to make the opening larger.

The Gold Flint has roughly 500' of workings in the main drift. It was reported by one of the previous owners that visited the claim several times to explore the mine and do some sampling that he found some good gold values in this mine. The floor of the mine is full of material that can be panned. He took four samples from the floor of the mine, all showed gold.

The Gold Flint claim covers the Gold Flint vein, an exceptionally rich deposit of gold found on the edge of the Butte Mining District. The Claim covers a full 20.66 acres and 2 of the last unpatented mines in the area. Only one of the mines are open and accessible, but it’s a rich, gold producing mine. The Gold Flint Mines were noted in the Butte Special district description as producing high quantities of nearly pure gold but in small quantities of less than 1000 tons, this is a relative term when you are talking about the massive amounts of ore that have come out of the Butte area and the high price of gold today.

Gold Flint Portal Looking Out

Looking outside through the enlarged portal.

The Gold Flint is a short drive out of Butte. A dirt road winds up into the hills and right to the old cabin and on to the mines. This is an old and rarely visited area except by locals. A high clearance 4WD vehicle can make it to the mine no problem, we recommend you take your time, because there are some rough, technical spots. The rough road is probably the reason that the mines are not often visited or disturbed. The road runs to the base of the hill below the mines. There is a good spot for parking near the cabin, in a small clearing below the mines. There is road access to the open mine, and it’s a quick ride up the hill to the mine entrance, where you will find a nice, flat staging area for working. The claim covers a full 20.66 acres, and has been written to cover the general trend of the lode.

Water seeping through the material blocking the portal.

The mine is an old cut, most likely pre-1870s. The main mine adit was cut higher in the back and lower in the front in order to self-drain each year during the spring runoff. We were unable to find the early history on this mine, but it appears to have been one of many mines in the area that belonged to the Nellie Mascot Group. The Nellie Mascot company abandoned their mining operations in the area shortly after their processing equipment burned down.

The floor just inside the portal.

There is roughly 500' of workings in the main drift of the Gold Flint. A previous owner bought the claim for a family member to give him something to do during the summer. But when we met the man he was out of his element not ever having mined before and he didn't have the correct equipment to work it correctly. They didn't maintain the claim after that last season and Gold And Mineral Mines of Montana LLC has since staked and Filed the Gold Flint mine.

Looking down the main drift.

When we visited it this past summer there was between 6-18 inches of water in the middle of the mine in the main drift but the back of the mine was dry. The water won't cause a problem for your work. It would be easy to siphon out the water with a couple hundred feet of hose while working the back of the mine, which is dry. Or the adit could be opened to allow the water to drain naturally. There is about a foot of paydirt on the floor of the mine waiting to be worked. Every spring the mine floods from the runoff washing the ore down to the floor. This has been happening for about 100 years. The ore on the floor is now covering the old ore cart ties completely. A previous owner discovered this shortly before he had to end his trip. It will take a lot of work but there is about 2,000 square feet of loose sediment on the floor of the mine that could be taken out and run through a sluice. Sampling shows the highest concentration is near the front of the mine at the lowest point on the floor. The floor was sampled at four places and all areas showed gold, silver, quartz, black sands and sulfides. Basically all that is needed is to haul the dirt out from the floor, classify it and pan it then crush the larger material and pan it also.

The beginning of the flooded section. The water is about 12 to 18 inches deep.

The placer gold on the floor is the easy stuff to start making money right away. The mine itself has plenty of gold ore ready to be worked out. However, the minerals in the mine are not easily visible because of a coating of dirt and silt over the surface. This coating hides the ore but is easily scraped off to reveal the rich gold ore.

6 to 18 inches of water in some parts of the Gold Flint Mine

Piece of ore cart rail sitting in the water.

The tailings offer another good mining opportunity. Over the years some of the gold has washed down to the bottom of the tailings pile from the top. Sampling shows the tailings are consistent with the gold and silver inside the mine. The previous miners used the best technology of their time but they left a huge amount of good ore behind in the tailings. In addition, sulfide ore was harder to treat back then and most times it was thrown out on the tailings piles at old mines. Some of the lode mines from the 1800's are full of gold to this day because the technology to process sulfide ore was not available back then so they threw it out and over time the ore has been sitting out in the weather oxidizing which then releases the gold. Many old mine dumps are very profitable for this reason alone. You'll find unprocessed gold ore throughout the hillside and mixed in with the quartz are some nice garnets.

At the base of the hill sits an old cabin in a field. This could be fixed up and used for staging. There is plenty of area to park vehicles and stage equipment.

Huge amount of info not listed, so if your interested in a gold lode mine feel free to give me a call or text at 406 219 1497. Ken

The Bureau of Mines has estimated that demonstrated U.S. reserves of gold are 85 million ounces. Approximately one-half of the total resources are estimated to be by-product gold, while 40% of the remaining one-half (56 million ounces) could be mined for gold alone ... Most U.S. gold resources are in the nation's western states. About 80% of the U.S. gold resources are estimated to be in Alaska, California, Idaho, Montana and Washington. (Earthsearch, Inc. 1983)

Overview of The Mines

Two mines are included in this claim. The mines are on the Gold Flint lode but currently only one mine is open. The other mine can be dug out and inspected, but the surveyors have documented only the mine that is open. The portal on the open adit was partially caved and the opening was small. A person could get inside but it was difficult so while the surveyor's were on site they have dug out a few more feet so the opening is more easily accessible. The new owners will want to continue to dig out more so it is easy to just walk in to the portal. Opening the portal more will also help to dry out the mine. A dry mine is safer than a wet one. We estimate it would take about a day for 1 or 2 guys to dig out the portal.

The USGS documents the first shipment from the mine in 1911 the cut appears to be much older and we estimate it to be from around the 1870's or earlier. Currently, the adits' portal is small due to a portion that has caved in, this opening is large enough for people to get inside and wouldn't take but a few hours to dig open completely. Once this is opened a locked gate would be required by law to prevent people from going inside and getting injured. Inside the mine it is about 3' - 4' wide and 5' - 6' tall. The drift is directly on the rich ore body that runs the length of the main drift. There is still a lot of ore visible even though a lot of ore has been previously mined. The Main drift of the mine extends 330' and has two drifts off of it which makes the total over 500' of workings.

The fact that such rich samples are so easily found right from the start make this mine an easy one to begin making a profit from right away. The workings are impressive, the entrance on the main drift is small currently but could quickly be made larger. Surveyors didn't see the "nearly pure gold" referred to in the USGS reports right off but it can be found behind the dirt and silt covering the ore body and of course in the floor of the mine itself. The surveyors did see a lot of good rich gold ore with some native gold and as mentioned the floor is a soft ore bearing material that can be removed and processed.

About 8' inside the portal on the main drift is a cut that leads to a small room with some shelving. Most likely this was storage for explosives. The door on the room is intact. The mine just needs to be worked and the recent sampling has shown this mine will be profitable quickly. We estimate it will take about a month for 3 or 4 guys to remove the material on the floor and run it through a sluice.

The Gold Flint Mine is located in the northwest quarter of section 5. It is short drive from Butte to the mine. Gold Flint claim is about 7160 feet in altitude.

Gold And Mineral Mines of Montana Gold Flint

Gold Flint Main Drift Diagram

While it is sometimes said old mines have been 'worked out' as the saying means there is no gold left, the truth is "it is better to say they are worked over; it is also true that the primitive methods used and the wasteful haste to get rich indulged in, left much of the gold in the ground, so that improved methods ... will give even better results than those first obtained." (MBMG Open Report p. 466)

Montana is ranked 7th by the USGS for total gold production in the US and has 31 mining districts. Gold production for the 1800's to 1968 is 17.8 million ounces and large amounts of gold have been mined from 1968 to present. Geologists have predicted that based on the past and the geology of Montana that several large gold and silver deposits will be found and developed in the future.

Details about the Mine:
Access to the Mine A 4WD vehicle can get to the entrance of the main mine drift. The road is narrow but in passable condition. The road to the mine is very rough in a few areas due to run-off. No maintenance on the roads seems to be done. There is plenty of areas to park a camper or RV prior to getting to the mine. We advise utilizing a side-by-side or 4 wheeler on your first trip to the mine to see how the road is. It is also advised to bring a chainsaw to cut trees out of the road that may have fallen during the winter. The winds during storms on Homestake (where the mine is located) can be strong anytime of the year and since the roots of the trees are shallow they do get blown down throughout the year.
Tailing Present Surveyors estimate well over 10,000 tons.
Depth / Length 500+ feet.
Minerals in the Mine Historically mined for gold and silver. Minerals of quartz, pyrite, galena, gold, silver, black sands with rare earth minerals would be expected. There isn't much history specifically for the Gold Flint mine except some lines in a description from the Butte Special District in the 1940's. Gold will be the mineral to mine from the Gold Flint and there is a lot of very rich ore at the mine. The floor of the mine and the veins in the walls show a lot of fine native gold
Foot traffic at the mine Almost None
Last Worked Sampling done in 2015, 2016 and 2020.
Number of Mines 2 Lode
Nearest city with amenities Butte, approximately 13.7 miles
Access to the Claim A dirt road breaks off from the Interstate and leads all the way to the mine. Overall the road is in relatively good condition when dry but will require a high clearance 4wd vehicle and there are some spots that require some technical skills to get to the mine. We also recommend bringing a chainsaw to cut fallen trees out of the way. These roads are not maintained. Wind gusts can bring trees down all year long so carrying a chainsaw at all times is advisable. We also recommend driving an ATV or side-by-side the first time to the mine to find the downed trees and tricky spots in the road. You will not be able to bring a camper or RV to this claim but there is plenty of camping areas prior to getting to the claim that an RV or camper can be parked.
Parking and Staging on the Claim Claim is situated so it allows for parking and staging of vehicles if desired. There is a large flat area around the cabin that could be used for parking and staging. At the portal there is an area that a couple of trucks could be parked or several ATV's.
Resources Year round water in the creek at the road near the cabin, grasses, sage and trees. For the cabin to be useful it would need repair as you can see in the pictures. More than enough trees on the claim for use in the mine.
Structures on claim 1 cabin
Elevation Aprox. 7160 feet
Total Workings Over 500 feet of workings documented which are cut along a gold rich ore body. Two drifts going in opposite directions come off the main leg. The air quality is good throughout the mine. The mine is solid rock so minimal timbering is needed. At the present there is no timbering inside the mine and very little material has fallen inside.

USGS Information
The Gold Flint appears to have been a part of the Nellie Mascot Group in the USGS Database. While the Nellie produced silver, the Gold Flint produced gold.

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Operation Type Lode
Development Status Past Producer
Commodity type Metallic
Comments on the commodity information Quartz Vein is high in silver.
Commodities
  • Gold- Primary
  • Silver - Primary
  • Lead - Primary
Year of first production 1911
Comments on production information 8 production years. Main production in 1911-1916. Owner reports $15,000 production as of 1935.
Comments on workings information Two 50 ft shafts and Six adits; 150, 100, 1000, 700, 300, and 700 ft. 2000 ft of drifts, 400 ft of crosscuts and 300 ft of raises in the Nellie-Mascot Group.
Host Rock Plutonic Rock – Granitoid – Quartz Monzonite
Ore control descriptions Aplite Dike
Comments on the geologic information Quartz vein cuts an aplite facies of the boulder batholith.
Nearby Scientific Data Pre-Belt gneiss, schist, and related rocks
References USGS Database - 10010550

Mining District Information

Homestake District

The Homestake mining district includes lode mines on the east side of the East Ridge, which forms the Continental Divide, southeast of Butte. Blacktail Creek and its tributaries on the west side of the divide and south of Butte are also considered part of the district.
The Homestake district lode claims include the Blackwell, Big Chief, Gold Bug, Nellie, Flag, Leslie and the Sixteen to One (Steere 1979). The Blackwell property, the primary producer, was discovered in 1864 and achieved production that merited the erection of a 10-stamp mill on the property. No production records, however, have been located for the mine's early operations.
The district is underlain by Boulder Batholith quartz monzonite which is intruded by dikes of aplite, pegmatite and some diabase. Small quartz veins are associated with the aplite in the granite. The gold and silver veins are often short and irregular, but frequently rich. Molybdenite has also been observed in the sheeting of the aplite or in narrow quartz veins. Some molybdenum was shipped in 1906 and 1907 (Sahinen 1935; Roby et al. 1960).
The Homestake Mining District is located north of present day I-90, about five miles southeast of Butte. In the 1860's some placer mining was done in the area, and in 1864 a prospector named Blackwell discovered the first lode mine that he named after himself. By 1899, when the Lucey Mining Company of Chicago owned the property, the Blackwell mine had five shafts, the deepest being five hundred feet, and the company had a small ten stamp mill operating at the mine site.
The Northern Pacific Railroad came through in 1899, establishing a settlement called Homestake at the crest of the Divide, which became the supply point for the district and with the availability of rail transport, development of the district was given a boost. Other mines like the Nellie, a combination of one patented and six unpatented claims started to mine ore. The mine was developed through two 50 foot shafts and 6 adits. The adits were 150, 100, 1,000, 700, 300 and 700 feet respectively. The underground workings also included 2,000 feet of drifts, 400 feet of cross cuts and 300 feet of raises. In 1935 four men were employed extracting $15,000 in gold and silver ore from veins in granite and associated with aplite intrusions. At the time, surface development included a gasoline compressor and three cabins. In eight years of production between 1911 and 1940, the mine reported 125 tons of ore. This yielded 50 ounces of gold, 8,053 ounces of silver and 178 pounds of lead (Gilbert 1935; Roby et al 1960).
Gold Flint Geology is in an area of granite surrounded by rhyolite and aplite, in a series of short veins, running in three different directions, which stand vertical or dip to the south. Their ores are said to have been unusually rich in gold.
The district is underlain by Boulder Batholith quartz monzonite which is intruded by dikes of aplite, pegmatite and some diabase. Small quartz veins are associated with the aplite in the granite. The gold and silver veins are often short and irregular, but frequently rich. Molybdenite has also been observed in the sheeting of the aplite or in narrow quartz veins.

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