November 12, 2019 

Clips from Alleghany


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 By fredmcain

10/30/2019  12:08AM


Actually, I'm not sure how bad the fire danger is up there right now. I'm thinking that it's mostly the lower elevations that are so tinder dry.

At any rate, I can tell you that there are some subtle changes beginning to take place over the Eastern Pacific Ocean in the Jet Stream.

It's possible that rain is only a little more than a week away if you can just manage to make it until then.

Best Regards,
Fred M. Cain

10/26/2019  4:57AM

Tahoe National Forest is going powerless in two hours along with an estimated 10% of the land mass of California. PG&E implements # 5 black out expected to last through October 28th. High winds expected this afternoon and evening into Sunday and perhaps longer coupled with hot temperatures has residents on edge. For the MINE, no electricity means the water is a rising!

Notice has been given last week to be prepared to evacuate: have a “to go bag”, gas in your vehicle, water and food, including food for Fido and Sylvester.

One safe haven in south west Tahoe is the underground Sixteen to One.

If all exit roads are on fire and fire is near, go underground. Sounds like a hippy battle cry from the late 60’s.

10/08/2019  6:12AM

No fire threat PG&E shut offs yet in Alleghany. Possibility announced fro tomorrow. Beautiful wind.
 By cw3343

10/07/2019  4:47AM

Has Alleghany been subjected to the PG&E blackouts during hot windy days?

If so, has that affected mining activity?

10/03/2019  3:16AM

Fall burst upon Sierra County last week end with freezing temperatures and a dusting of snow. No big deal forunderground gold miners.

Lightning and heavy rain hit Alleghany. Third quarter federal mine inspectors (MSHA) wrote no citations for the underground.

Some tail lights were broken on the surface loaders and one report was not filed in July. That super pocket of gold remains hidden. “It’s in the next round” is miners response to how’s it going.
 By fredmcain

08/06/2019  11:17PM

WOW ! ! ! ! Judging from the accuweather radar, northern California appears to be getting some rare summer rain this year. This year continues to be something else!

I assume that some rain has fallen on Alleghany, as well. There probably will not be much of a fire season up there this year but I'm sure no one will be disappointed about that!

Looks like you might just get a break in the fires!

Best Regards,
Fred M. Cain

07/30/2019  6:08AM

Rural America, off-the-path with country and city dwellers, encounters distinctive, not ordinary challenges. Alleghany raises the bar for jumping through life’s rural challenges. For example: Alleghany and the mine have lots of electric power. There are numerous outages year round. Yesterday, Alleghany had full power but the mine had no power. This means no compressed air and no water pumping. PG&E was notified, arriving mid-morning today. Power back on about 11am.

A squirrel made a fatal mistake. It climbed the utility pole, stepped onto the ground wire and then touched the high voltage wire. Oops. It was all over fast. Shareholders probably know your mine buys 500 amps of three phase 4160 volts from PG&E. Monthly bill is $5,500.

Our rural is in southwest Tahoe National Forest, of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. Alleghany has an abundance and variety of wild life: bears, cougars, bobcats, foxes, deer, pigs, hawks, owls, ravens and smaller feathered friends, ringed tail cats, raccoons, coyotes, frogs, lizards, bouncing rabbits (multiple sizes), snakes, mice, giant wood rats, banana slugs and one less squirrel. Who can honestly infer that all mining is hostile environment for wild critters?

Alleghany is technologically rural: satellite internet only, no cell phone service and peculiarly odd hard wire phone service. A giant dish sends messages miles north to a screen that looks like the old drive-in movie screens. Scoop has no clue where that message goes; but something Alleghany knows for sure: unsecured phone communication and erratic operations. Moments ago all phone service except calling another Alleghany number is gone. Alleghany cannot dial the outside world. Are we isolated or not? This outage may last for days. So, if you are calling the mine office, Buena suerte.
 By cw3343

06/11/2019  12:46PM

you live/work in a beautiful area! Internet shminternet.

You could live in Bakersfield, and get very consistent internet & cell phone service...

Hoping for a safe fire season in your area this year!!!

05/31/2019  3:29PM

Lightning strikes take out Sixteen's office Internet service yesterday and others in Alleghany. Alleghany is 19 miles from California highway 49. Pavement ends at museum. Hell's Half Acre is one of three dirt roads out of this remote mining camp. It has no cell phone service, regular phone service bounces off a dish miles away located on Hennes Pass. Now no Internet. Does it get any better than this?

05/16/2019  4:43PM

Positive hard information about the value and need of a strong mining industry is picking up speed. The next two paragraphs lead a lengthy report you can find at:

Over the past 50 years, the United States has ignored and even shunned the importance of its mineral wealth like no other country in the industrial world.
Australia, Canada, Sweden, Russia, China and most other industrialized economies value their mineral resources and use them to their defense and economic benefit, and even for geopolitical advantage. Not so the United States. Indeed, our nation “boasts” a growing list of groups that are openly hostile to extractive industries, especially mining.

Wake up America. Wars were fought for minerals from a a neighbors country.

04/16/2019  1:51PM


Tree and brush fellers ontracted by PG&E arrive in Alleghany this morning to clear thirty feet around the new substation. The contract calls for no standing trees less than ten feet apart within 100 feet of the substation. The Paradise fire was a disaster which could have been reduced with forest management. Many in Sierra County, part of Tahoe National Forrest, screamed for understory and thinning for decades. Environmental pressure persuaded political and government personnel at the highest levels to ignore. California needs to get with this program immediately. Don’t spend another nine years studying a plan.
 By karld

04/12/2019  8:47AM

Happy to help, Scoop! Thanks for the details. (Does anybody know how to retrieve a lost password? I have it stored and hidden in this old computer, but I can't log in from my phone, as I lost the password)

04/11/2019  11:25AM

Karld, you just scooped scoop with your entry. According to reliable gossip about 100 ounces. One specimen with 15 ounces of gold sold for $48,195. Scoop needles Mike to write some narrative about each photo. How about that icicle?
 By karld

04/10/2019  12:09PM

OSTO’s Facebook page showed some delicious new gold/quartz that was mined about 2 weeks ago. Do we know the quantity that has been mined recently?

03/15/2019  10:38AM

That Sixteen crew of miners did it again. For anyone doubting their capabilities, dedication and all other traits to be a California hard rock miner, blow it off. You’re ill informed. New 25 HP motor installed and pumping. Replaced a $500 high amp circuit breaker. Sixteen mine has enough power to run Alleghany. Mike said to thank PG&E line man, Armondo, a very thorough technician.
 By fredmcain

03/14/2019  7:33AM


I sure hope that PG&E compensates you for this. They did this to my parents one time when they lived in Yountville.

In that case, an errant motorist hit a pole that caused the surge. (Surges happen when a higher voltage wire makes contact with a lower voltage wire or lightning can also do it).

That surge took out Mom & Dad's stereo, microwave and something else, can't remember now.

But anyhow, PG&E did reimburse them for their loss.

Fred M. Cain

03/13/2019  11:29AM

Heavy snows, winds and poor power line management cause extensive and expensive damages in Sierra County’s Alleghany/Downieville areas. Power surges of 60,000 wasted the main lines. Fifteen PG&E and contractor trucks at a time parked along Ridge Road near the Alleghany dump for days and the new substation in Alleghany. Surges took out Sixteen’s computer equipment and the pumping system. All is expected back working by tomorrow.

02/01/2019  2:25PM

Storm Alert announce for California beginning two hours from now. Heavy rain turning to snow as low as 2,000 foot elevation. Eight to ten feet high atop sierra Nevada Mountain. Flooding possible in southern CA and northern CA near fire areas. High winds expected. Sixteen to One miners worked into the late hours this week. Indicates gold was mined. Over and out.

01/14/2019  3:56PM

Newmont Mining will take over Goldcorp in a deal worth US$10 billion, creating the world’s leading gold company.

Under a definitive agreement revealed on today (January 14), Newmont will acquire all shares of Goldcorp for 0.328 of a Newmont share each. That represents a 17-percent premium based on the companies’ 20-day volume-weighted average share prices.

“This combination will create the world’s leading gold business with the best assets, people, prospects and value-creation opportunities,” said Gary Goldberg, CEO of Newmont.
The newly merged company will be one of the largest gold producers in North America, and according to David Garofalo, president and CEO of Goldcorp, the merged miner will oversee more than 3 million ounces of the combined company’s total annual gold production.
Draw your own conclusions about the move to mega –ness, mighty giants or monster monoplies!

The deal comes after last year’s US$18.3-billion Barrick Gold) and Randgold Resources , which many market watchers considered a bullish event for gold.

12/13/2018  3:51PM

Been bugging Mike for some mining news. He said here, a recent update written to our geologist.

Hi Mark,
Just because we haven’t talked for a while means we have not been busy (you, me and the mine). Two Fridays ago I witnessed the end of a week unlike any I’ve seen in forty years. I was at the mine when the crew was closing the portal. Never have I seen a more work fatigued crew of miners. From their hard hats to their muck boots hard, wet and griminess reeked from their entire bodies. The 1700 rehab is a bitch! The crew is working the same plan when you were underground last. Clearing the 1700 foot level from 49 winze to Tightner Shaft is close to completion. It hasn’t been an easy trip!

One major pile of muck remains, about the same size as the last one. The last one took sixty cars to load, tram and dump down an abandoned raise from the 1900 foot level. That equals 120,000 pounds of shot quartz and vein material or almost half a million Quarter Pounders. Much was hand shoveling.
Due to the higher elevation of the 49 winze, the train had to pull the load up-grade. The dump pocket is South of the winze. The current pile has a dump pocket less than 100 feet away, which is a relief to the men. The utilities are in: compressed air, water, electricity and phone.
I remember well the 1700 level before we stopped pumping in 2005). It is solid rock, very nice for travel. When under water, muck from above stored in the old raises and stopes washed onto the level. The plan is going well but taking longer due to unknowns the crew discovered.
With the pain comes an interesting potential gain. The muck came from the 1500 level when we mined the million dollar day (2500 ounces with spot at $450 a troy ounce. The 1500 station didn’t have much of a dump pocket, so the miners used an existing raise from the 1700 level to move the material. The 1700 station has a great dump pocket, one of the best.
Gold was present while loading the cars; however time is critical so we didn’t spend much time with detectors. The Tightner 1700 station is our target for lowering the pump. You will have an efficient travel way to the 1500 North targets. You know our intentions.
A very competent all around mechanic is handling all the maintenance now. It makes a huge difference. Mining is heavy industry so everything will break or just quit running over time. Fortunately, Al, who you haven’t met yet, has solved and fixed every project, making the crew happy. Also it keeps them underground. We are still short handed. Plan on a visit in January. Reid has an interesting place he wants you to see.

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