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Inyo County Gold Mining

Inyo County California Gold

Inyo County produced 496,000 ounces of gold between 1880 and 1959, primarily from lode mines scattered throughout the county, with a considerable percentage as the byproduct from lead, silver, copper, and tungsten ores.
Russ District
In the Inyo Mountain Range, the Russ district opened in 1861) had many area mines that produced lode gold. On the west and east slopes of the Inyo Range in Mazurka Canyon and Marble canyon, there were many small scale placer workings.


South Park District and Sherman District
At Ballarat, in the South Park District, in the south-central part of the county, there was a total production of over 100,000 ounces. There are many area old mine dumps that show gold traces. The Ratcliff Mine was a chief producer of lode gold. Southwest of Ballarat 10~15 miles, in township 23S. range 42E and 43E, in the Argus Range, the Sherman district had a total production, 1939-41, of 14,184 ounces of lode gold. There are also many area leads, silver mines that had a by product of gold. The Arondo Mine was a rich producer of free gold. The Ruth Mine was also a rich producer of free gold, with pyrite.
Willshire-Bishop Creek District
West of Bishop by 17 miles, the Willshire-Bishop Creek district, on the east front of the Sierra Nevada Range and in the Tungsten Hills; had a total production, 75,000-100,000 ounces of by product gold, from lead, silver mines. The Bishop Creek Mine and, at the head of Bishop Creek and the Willshire Mine were large lode gold producers. The Pine Creek Mine was once the largest domestic tungsten mine also had a by product of gold. The Cardinal Gold Mining Company Mine only produced lode gold.
Chloride Cliff District
At Death Valley National Monument on the slope of the Funeral Range, you will find The Chloride Cliff district which had a total production of 60,000 ounces. Also the site of the Keane Wonder Mine which is now in ruins, but once a large lode gold producer.
East of Lone Pine in the Inyo Mountains in north central part of the county, you will find the Union district, that had a total production,1860s-1959, between 10,000 and 50,000 ounces of lode gold. The Reward and Brown Monster mines were major producers of lode gold. In area canyon and gulch gravels, slopes and drainage channels, Placer gold can still be found.
Resting Springs District and Wild Rose District
In the southeast corner of the county, you will find Tecopa. If you go east 5-10 miles, you will find the Resting Springs district, that had a total production through 1959 of 15,000 ounces of lode gold from lead, silver ores, from the Shoshone Group of mines.
If you go west in the Panamint Mountains you will find Wild Rose district, a ranger station is located in Monument, west in the Panamint Range, had a total production of about 73,000 ounces of lode gold from the Skidoo Mine.

Where to find gold in California

Gold and Silver Specimens from Inyo County