2.  Last Chance Placer
     (4.8 Miles)  

    Drive in 200 feet to a split rail fence around a mining pit.

    Placer mining is a simple technique where gold is separated from sand or gravel with water.  The miners worked the ground at this site down to bedrock.  Once pay dirt (black sand) was found, it was transported by horse and cart or in sacks on burros’ backs, to be “sluiced in the rockers.”  These crude gravel washers were located near hand-built earthen “snow ponds” where runoff supplied the water they needed.  Once such pond is northeast of the pit, 0.25 mile up the gulch.

    The mounds or “tailings” you see are the dirt and rocks removed from the mine after it was worked for gold.  The prospectors were in search of the mother lode-the source of the gold-which has never been found.

The mining pit is behind us here enclosed by the rail fencing.  Another visitor is checking out the Gold Fever Trail map with me.  There are a large number of lizards that live in the mining pit now.  We enjoyed watching them scamper around inside the pit before moving onto the next mining site.


 

 

One of the best unexpected surprises of this Gold Fever Trail in spring is the assortment of delicate wild flowers.  You really have to look for them, as you can see some of the wild flowers are no bigger than a dew drop and stand only ¼ inch tall.   

These flowers are so delicate; please stay on only marked trails so as to keep mankind’s impact on the fragile forest flora and fauna to a minimum.

1. Holcomb View Trail - 2. Last Chance Placer
Wilbur's Grave (Not on the tour)
3. Two Gun Bill's Saloon - 4. Jonathan Tibbett's Grasshopper Quartz Mill
5. Hangman's Tree - 6. Original Gold Diggings - 7. Belleville - 8. Arrasters
9. Ross' Grave - 10. Pygmy Cabin Site - 11. Metzger Mine
12. Gold Mountain A.K.A. Lucky Baldwin Mine

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