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Co-op Creek Mine

On the west side of Currant Creek there's a drainage called Co-op Creek which runs south and empties into the Strawberry Reservoir. About seven miles up the Coop Creek road, just before it (the road) drops off into Currant Creek, Reid Powell and I located and staked a massive ore deposit containing nodules of iron pyrites which carry high concentrations of gold and silver by chemical and atomic absorption but very little, if anything, by fire assay methods. For the longest time we couldn't determine whether we had ourselves a fluke of nature or that of a real bonanza.

This is a unique mineral deposit where the precious metals are locked within numerous seams of salacious carbons, calcified logs and stumps and pyrite nodules overlain by Tertiary sandstones of the Uintah Formation and underlain by Mesozoic Chime and Moen kopi Formations.

Assays obtained from the nodules by chemical and atomic absorption methods have shown the following values: Gold - 5 to 266 ounces per ton; Silver - 45.3 to 399 ounces per ton; Platinum - 1.24 ounces per ton; Palladium - 1.485 ounces per ton; Rhodium - .0746 ounces per ton; and Tungsten Sheltie - approximately 2 percent of all ore samples checked. Also present were fair amounts of copper, molybdenum, lead and zinc and nickel.

Assays by fire method, however, would not reveal high values by reason of the high arsenic content and the super fineness of the precious metals - when fired, the fine gold and silver were carried up the chimney with the arsenic and would show only the following values: Gold - .5, .9, .1, .13, etc. ounces per ton; and Silver .1, trace, etc. ounces per ton.

We've learned that the ore from this deposit cannot easily be smeltered without first being specially prepared, but that - when finely ground to 200 to 400 mesh - can be processed economically by chemical methods.

We found within the creek bed of this deposit four gold nuggets, several coated with a manganese oxide, weighing 5, 7, 9 and 31 grams each. But these have been difficult to locate and the source of the nuggets, whether it be a vein or a blowout, has yet to be located.--Lost Gold of the Uintah, pg. 163

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