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HardPack

Locating Claim Owners

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The recent post on "Lode Claims" discuss a interesting and important subject on involving lode & placer mining claims and access. Beside the good information it demonstrates just how serious miners are about their claims holdings.  So make sure you get "express written permission" from the mining claim owner(s) before entering onto their claims to prospect and/or detect.

A word of advice leave your pets and firearms at home and take your trash out with you.  If you agree to share a portion of your finds with the owner(s) keep your word.  Don't close the door for the next person.

So how do you contact a claim owner(s) to get permission to prospect/detect on a open active mining claim. There are several members far more update on these BLM websites than me and will fill in most of my mistakes and omissions. This should at least get us headed down the road.

Using Foxfire as the browser ( these websites are not user friendly so use the BLM Tutorial and type in information exactly as indicated per the LR2000 samples; use all Caps.

For overall claim filing information and location description (lode & placer); Booklet

http://www.BLM.gov

On the left margin click on "What we do" then hit "more"; scroll down to the following two topics: Mining and Mineral; Mining Claims and Sites on Federal Lands.

https://navigator.blm.gov/home

Click on the "Inactive map" located in the upper center of the page; you will see a tool bar along the top of the map for zooming in & out and panning.

On the right margin click the "PLSS" button for bring up meridian, township, range, section grid on the inactive map; click on the +zoom in then click on the ma to move to the area (state) you want; write down the "median, township, range and section" numbers.

http://www.BLM.gov/lr2000

Located on the left margin click through  and read  “Tutorial”, “Help Guides”, “Reference Codes”

Click on “Run Reports”.  Scroll down to “Public Mining Claims Reports”

Click on “Pub MC Geo Index”

Click the “Meridian Township Range Section *” and ” County” buttons;

Click “Select Criteria” at the bottom 

The “Mandatory Criteria” window will pop up.

Click on the “Set” button for each criteria then the “Close” after selecting or entering the information requested.

“Admin State” select a state from the scroll down window; Close

In “Case Disposition” select “Active”; Close

The “Meridian Town Range Section” (MTRS) window has a MTRS Format sample located on the upper left; use all Caps; enter the information in the box just below “Clear Above Valves” then hit the check button. You can run more the MTRS at a time; click the “Select All” button; Close

“County” select a county from the scroll down window; Close

click “Run Report”

Confirm your selections then click” OK”

The report will include claim names, number, location by MTRS down to the NW, NE, SW, SE corner of the section per page# 10 of the BLM booklet “Mining Claims & Site on Federal Lands”.

Clicking a  “claim number” of any individual claims will bring the claim document; the claim owner(s) are listed by name, address and zip code; including the claim size in acres.

The county “Recorders Office” of the county where the claim is located will have copy on file of the claim owner(s), address, claim size, type, and specific location in the section (booklet page#10 sample: 20 acre Placer Claim E 1/2 NE 1/4 NE 1/4 per section, township, range, meridian.)

or you can just join a prospecting and/or detecting club in your area of interest.

Good Luck

 

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Geocommunicator is being decommisioned in a few weeks. There is a new site called BLM Navigator that will supposedly amalgamate a bunch of old functionality along with some new into one place.

https://navigator.blm.gov/home

Though it's not even close to done, most the stuff there is missing or broken as of now. I was going to make a seperate post on this, but they keep not getting it updated so it's not really worth using yet.

I've been told they are adding new functionality like direct links to MTP's from the map interface, potentially even public/private mineral ownership such as on their paper maps. Potentially even claims again. But who knows. I applaud Land Matters for picking up their slack, but this is all publically funded data and it really should be provided as a service to tax payers by the agency responsible for managing it ultimately since we've already paid for it, especially since a direct connection to their database would mean instant syncing and the most up to date data possible, instead of the bi-weekly (if they are on time, which is rare) email and server dump they current use to distribute LR2000 updates for 3rd party mapping programs.

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So much simpler to use Land Matters if you don't know Township, Range, Section, etc.

Geocommunication.gov has been garbage for years.

Not necessary to use Foxfire for lr2000

Those are good instructions for lr2000

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I always check the BLM's LR2000 and the local County Recorder/Register of Deeds Office (name varies by state) for the locality, then visually check the area for claim markers, before any prospecting is done. Local research at the county level and on-site is important because there may be new claims not in the Recorders Office or the LR2000 database yet.  Thanks for sharing this. 

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Landmatters has a video tutorial for their Mining Claims Maps. They list the claims by state; with the number of current placer & lodes claims by section. They link diectly to the LR2000 Claims Reports plus provide a county recorder contact. The annual mining assessment date is 1 September of each year but BLM does not update the "open"and "closed" claims status until well into the following year.  To my knowledge patented claims are not listed by BLM but a good topo map, BLM or Forest Service map will indicate the patented claims within their boundaries; the county recorder will have the owner(s) information on file. BLM is also back-logged on current claims so many claims are not staked. 

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  • Similar Content

    • By Steve Herschbach
      Another question via email, with personal references removed. I prefer to answer these on the forum so everyone gets the benefit of the answer plus others can offer their opinions also.
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      My method is much simpler than that. I basically look for gold where gold has been found before. Think of it like fishing. If you want to go catch salmon you have two options. You can go to where people have caught salmon before - pretty good odds here. Or you can go where nobody has ever caught a salmon before. Very poor odds!
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      So just for fun let's say I want to go look for gold in New Mexico. The section on New Mexico starts on page 200 and here is a quick summary of the opening paragraphs:
      "The gold-producing districts of New Mexico are distributed in a northeastward-trending mineral belt of variable width that extends diagonally across the State, from Hidalgo County in the southwest corner to Colfax County along the north-central border. From 1848 through 1965 New Mexico is credited with a gold production of about 2,267,000 ounces; however, several million dollars worth of placer gold was mined prior to 1848. Mining in New Mexico began long before discoveries were made in any of the other Western States (Lindgren and others, 1910, p. 17-19; Jones, 1904, p. 8-20). The copper deposits at Santa Rita were known and mined late in the 18th century, and placer gold mining began as early as 1828 in the Ortiz Mountains south of Santa Fe. In 1839 placer deposits were discovered farther south along the foot of the San Pedro Mountains. The earliest lode mining, except the work at Santa Rita, dates back to 1833 when a gold-quartz vein was worked in the Ortiz Mountains. In 1865 placers and, soon afterward, quartz lodes were found in the White Mountains in Lincoln County; in 1866 placer deposits were discovered at Elizabethtown in Colfax County, and silver-lead deposits were discovered in the Magdalena Range in Socorro County. In 1877 placers and gold-quartz veins were found at Hillsboro, and in 1878 phenomenally rich silver ore was found at Lake Valley in Sierra County.
      The mineral belt of New Mexico is in mountainous terrain that lies between the Colorado Plateau on the northwest and the Great Plains on the east. It is a zone of crustal disturbance in which the rocks were folded and faulted and intruded by stocks, dikes, and laccoliths of monzonitic rocks. Deposits of copper, lead, zinc, gold, and silver occur locally throughout this belt. Some deposits of copper and gold are Precambrian in age, but most of the ore deposits are associated with Upper Cretaceous or Tertiary intrusive rocks. The gold placers were probably derived from the weathering of these deposits. In later Tertiary time lavas spread out over wide areas of the State, and fissures within these rocks were later mineralized. These fissure veins are rich in gold and silver, but in most places they are relatively poor in base metals. In New Mexico, 17 districts in 13 counties yielded more than 10,000 ounces of gold each through 1957 (fig.19).
      Figure 19 is a handy map showing us where you want to look in New Mexico and also where looking is probably a waste of time. Click for larger version.

      The map shows what the text said "The mineral belt of New Mexico is in mountainous terrain that lies between the Colorado Plateau on the northwest and the Great Plains on the east." Sticking to this area is going to be your best bet. Based just on this map I see two areas of general interest - the central northern area, and the southwestern corner of the state.
      The text mentions that placer deposits were discovered at Elizabethtown in Colfax County, and the map shows that as the Elizabethtown-Baldy mining district. Following along in the text we find this:
      "The placer deposits along Grouse and Humbug Gulches, tributaries of Moreno Creek, each yielded more than $1 million in placer gold and silver. Another $2 million worth of placer gold and silver was recovered from the valleys of Moreno and Willow Creeks (Anderson, 1957, p. 38-39), and some gold also came from the gravels along Ute Creek. Graton (in Lindgren and others, 1910, p. 93) estimated the placer production of the Elizabethtown-Baldy district prior to 1904 at $2.5 million, and C. W. Henderson (in U. S. Bureau of Mines, 1929, pt. 1, p. 7 40) estimated the production through 1929 at about $3 million (145,138 ounces). The total placer production through 1959 was about 146,980 ounces."
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      Anderson, E. C., 1957, The metal resources of New Mexico and their economic features through 1954: New Mexico Bur. Mines and Mineral Resources Bull. 39, 183 p.
      Lindgren, Waldemar, Graton, L. C., and Gordon, C. H., 1910, The ore deposits of New Mexico: U.S. Geol. Survey Prof. Paper 68, 361 p.
      Henderson, C. W., 1932, Gold, silver, copper, lead, and zinc in New Mexico: U.S. Bur. Mines, Mineral Resources U.S., 1929, pt. 1, p. 729-759.
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      Placer Gold Deposits in New Mexico by Virginia T. McLemore, New Mexico Bureau of Mines and Mineral Resources May 1994
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      Let's look for specific site information.
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      OK, that really should have answered your question. As far as places I have been, they are nearly all in Alaska and can be found here
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      Prior thread on finding claims information.
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      It's that time again. The August 31 deadline to make your required annual mining claims filings is only a month away.
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    • By Rege-PA
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    • By Clay Diggins
      As they do twice a month Land Matters updated their free Mining Claims Maps. That claims map information is current as of January 1st.

      The mining year is now four months along. In the last 4 months there were 6,479 mining claims closed and 14,854 new claims located as of January 1, 2018.

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    • By Clay Diggins
      A lot of prospectors have an interest in exploring closed claims. I'm not a big fan of spending time looking for closed claims for the simple reason that most claims made never produced any valuable minerals. The fact that a claim was previously located is not an indicator of valuable minerals. After all if the claim owners didn't bother to keep the claim active it probably wasn't worth having.
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      That's pretty cool to have all that information available with a couple of clicks. I use the reports a lot myself. The real power of these Reports starts to shine when I sort by Year Located or Years Held. Remember how I said how most claims made never produced any valuable minerals? Well that doesn't really apply when you see someone has maintained a claim for many years. It makes me sit up and take notice when I see a claim that has been held for anywhere from 20 years to 125+ years. THAT is information I can use!
      Being that I keep all this information on hand I can sort this information on a much longer timeline than the half month available in the Claims Advantage Reports. By sorting for all the Closed Claims that were held for at least 20 years or more AND were located on now unclaimed land I can see the claims that people valued and kept that are now open to location. That may sound like there wouldn't be that many established closed claims on productive ground right? Well surprise surprise! There are nearly 20,000 placer claims that meet that standard!
      Naturally I share this information with my favorite charity Land Matters and naturally Land Matters makes this information available to it's Claims Advantage Members.
      Here's a brief look at how these claims stack up in each State:

      Surprising isn't it?
      Here's a quick heat map to show the general location and density of all these open areas:

      Here's a link to an online interactive map so you can look a little closer.
      That's a whole bunch of open ground with a HIGH potential for valuable minerals. Whether you are looking for open ground to prospect or are researching for a potential new claim looking at this closed claim information from a more organized and selective angle can really pay off. If you are looking for an edge the Historical Placer Claims Report is a good start.
       
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