Mining Claim Procedures Revision

Title:Mining Claim Procedures for Nevada Prospectors and Miners (Sixth Edition, Revised December 2019)
Authors: Keith G. Papke and David A. Davis; sixth edition revisions by Christopher Ross, Ralston Pedersen, Rachel Micander, and Nathan Robison; illustrations by Larry Jacox and Jan Walker, with updates by Paula Robison and Rachel Micander
Year: 2019
Series: Special Publication 6
Version: sixth edition, revised December 2019 (see updated content below)
Format: 73 pages
View/download/purchase the handbook.

A guide for the prospector, providing information on locating lode and placer claims, locating a mill site, tunnel rights, patenting, amending and assessment work on mining claims; list of county recorders; and appendices of laws, notices certificates, and affidavits for the miner. The first edition of Special Publication 6 was published in 1982 and was based mainly on the 1971 Nevada State Mining Laws with a 1983 update sheet reflecting changes made by the 1983 Nevada State Legislature. The second edition, published in 1986, was based mainly on the 1985 Nevada State Mining Laws. The third edition reflected changes made by the 1987 Nevada State Legislature.

This version includes updated text throughout the report, modernized figures, and other revisions as a result of changes from past Legislative Sessions. Also new in this revision are procedures for staking claims across county and state lines.

Evolving the Geodetic Infrastructure to Meet New Scientific Needs

Geoff Blewitt (Research Professor, Nevada Geodetic Lab, NBMG) is a co-author of a new report published by the The National Academies Press titled Evolving the Geodetic Infrastructure to Meet New Scientific Needs.

Free downloads and purchases of the report can be found through the National Academy Press. 

Press Release and Report Highlights.

Description: “Satellite remote sensing is the primary tool for measuring global changes in the land, ocean, biosphere, and atmosphere. Over the past three decades, active remote sensing technologies have enabled increasingly precise measurements of Earth processes, allowing new science questions to be asked and answered. As this measurement precision increases, so does the need for a precise geodetic infrastructure.

Evolving the Geodetic Infrastructure to Meet New Scientific Needs summarizes progress in maintaining and improving the geodetic infrastructure and identifies improvements to meet new science needs that were laid out in the 2018 report. Thriving on Our Changing Planet: A Decadal Strategy for Earth Observation from Space. Focusing on sea-level change, the terrestrial water cycle, geological hazards, weather and climate, and ecosystems, this study examines the specific aspects of the geodetic infrastructure that need to be maintained or improved to help answer the science questions being considered.

The study — undertaken by the Committee on Evolving the Geodetic Infrastructure to Meet New Scientific Needs — was sponsored by NASA and the National Academy of Sciences Arthur L. Day Fund.”

  • David T. Sandwell, Chair, Scripps Institution of Oceanography
  • Srinivas Bettadpur, The University of Texas at Austin
  • Geoffrey Blewitt, University of Nevada, Reno
  • John J. Braun, University Corporation for Atmospheric Research
  • Anny Cazenave, Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales
  • Nancy Glenn, Boise State University and University of New South Wales
  • Kristine Larson, University of Colorado, Boulder, emeritus
  • Steven Nerem, University of Colorado, Boulder
  • Michelle Sneed, U.S. Geological Survey
  • Isabella Velicogna, University of California, Irvine

Evolving the Geodetic Infrastructure to Meet New Scientific NeedsWebinar
Friday, February 21, 2020
Presented by Dr. David T. Sandwell, Committee Chair
Friday, February 21, 2020
1:00 PM – 2:00 PM, EST

Webinar registration.

The Nevada Mineral Industry 2018 – Now Available Online

Authors: John L. Muntean, David A. Davis, and Bridget Ayling
Year: 2019
Series: Mineral Industry MI-2018
Format: 222 pages, includes color, plastic comb-bound report
View/download the report.

Paper copies will be available for purchase soon.

Starting in 1979, NBMG has issued annual reports that describe the mineral (precious and base metals and industrial minerals including aggregate), oil and gas, and geothermal activities and accomplishments.

This report describes those accomplishments in Nevada for 2018, which includes production, reserve, and resource statistics; exploration and development—including drilling for petroleum and geothermal resources, discoveries of orebodies, new mines opened, and expansion and other activities of existing mines; and a directory of mines and mills.

Preparation for this publication was supported by the Nevada Division of Minerals.

Previous editions are also available for purchase.

Geologic Map of the Granite Peak Quadrangle, Washoe County, Nevada

Author: Seth Dee
Year: 2019
Series: Open-File Report 2019-05
Version: supersedes Open-File Report 1987-08
Format: plate: 28 x 32.5 inches, color; text: 5 pages, color
Scale: 1:24,000

View, download, or purchase the Granite Peak Quadrangle map.

The Granite Peak 7.5-minute quadrangle is located immediately north of Reno, and abuts the Nevada-California state line in an area known as the ‘North Valleys’. The quadrangle includes the summits of Petersen Mountain and Granite Peak, and portions of Red Rock Valley and Cold Springs valley. The bedrock exposures in the quadrangle consist primarily of Cretaceous granitic rocks related to the Sierra Nevadan batholith. The granitic rocks include three distinct lithologies with relative ages constrained by clear crosscutting relationships. Miocene to Pliocene clastic and fluvio-lacustrine sediments are deposited in a shallow basin west of Freds Mountain in the easternmost part of the quadrangle. On the western flank of Petersen Mountain, west-dipping Oligocene ash-flow tuff deposits nonconformably overlie Cretaceous granite. Quaternary sediments largely consist of alluvial fans and several large landslide deposits (up to 2.7 sq. km.).

The quadrangle is bisected by the Petersen Mountain fault zone. The fault zone consists of two subparallel traces (western and eastern) that extend from Cold Springs valley in the south to Seven Lakes Mountain in the north. The western trace of the fault strikes generally north-south along the eastern range front of Petersen Mountain, dips steeply east, and locally displaces surficial deposits as young as Holocene. The eastern trace consists of several north-south striking strands that displace surficial deposits as young as late Pleistocene and locally forms a narrow graben infilled by faulted fanglomerate material. Fault surfaces on the eastern trace have subhorizontal slickenlines demonstrating a history of dextral-oblique motion. Long-term late Cenozoic normal displacement across the western trace is demonstrated by the high relief of the Petersen Mountain range front (>500 m) as well as the accumulation of Miocene-Pliocene sediments to the east that were likely deposited into a basin controlled by early displacement along the fault. This is in contrast to the eastern strand, which has been active since at least the middle Pleistocene but for much of its length does not bound basins with significant accumulations of late Cenozoic deposits. These map relationships suggest the Petersen Mountain fault zone initially developed as a Basin and Range extensional structure with displacement primarily along the western fault trace, and has evolved into a Walker Lane structure with dextral-oblique motion focused on the eastern trace.

This geologic map was funded by the USGS National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program under STATEMAP award number G18AC00198, 2019.

Geologic Map of the Washoe City Quadrangle, Washoe County, Nevada

Authors: Chad W. Carlson, Richard D. Koehler, and Christopher D. Henry
Year: 2019
Series: Open-File Report 2019-04
Version: supersedes Urban Maps UM5Ag and UM5Ak
Format: plate: 34.5 x 37 inches, color; text: 7 pages, b/w
Scale: 1:24,000

View, download, or purchase the Washoe City Quadrangle map.

This quadrangle encompasses Washoe Valley, an internally drained basin located between the Reno/Sparks and Carson City urban areas in northern Nevada. The seismically active eastern range front of the Sierra Nevada (Carson Range) extends along the western side of the quadrangle. Washoe Lake, a popular recreational area, extends from the south into the central part of the quadrangle. The eastern side of the quadrangle contains the rural communities of New Washoe City and Pleasant Valley, located along the western foothills of the Virginia Range. Major infrastructure within the quadrangle includes Interstate 580 concurrent with U.S. Highway 395, which extends north-south through the quadrangle west of Washoe Lake, and the ~73 megawatt Steamboat Hills geothermal power plants, with expansion plans for an additional 20 megawatts, occupying the northeasternmost part of the quadrangle.

Bedrock exposures in the quadrangle consist of Jurassic to Triassic metasedimentary and metavolcanic rocks of the Gardnerville Formation, Cretaceous granite and granodiorite, and Tertiary volcanic and sedimentary rocks. The Tertiary section includes Oligocene ash-flow tuffs and a complex section of Miocene volcanic rocks, intrusions, and volcaniclastic sedimentary rocks. Miocene volcanic rocks are basaltic to dacitic lavas and breccias interfingering across the northern parts of the quadrangle. The volcanic rocks were part of an ancestral Cascades arc that consisted of two recognized pulses in the Washoe City quadrangle: ~5.5–7.1 Ma lavas and breccias that extend east from the Mount Rose quadrangle into the Steamboat Hills and ~15 Ma lavas and breccias that extend west from the Virginia City quadrangle. Quaternary, 1.2 Ma rhyolite lava and tuff and 2.2 Ma basaltic andesite lava in the Steamboat Hills are some of the youngest volcanic rocks in western Nevada. Holocene sinter is being deposited by the active Steamboat geothermal system.

Principle Quaternary surficial deposits include middle Pleistocene to modern alluvial fan, landslide, and debris-flow deposits, middle to late Pleistocene glacial outwash and moraine deposits, late Pleistocene to modern lacustrine and eolian deposits, as well as active alluvial and colluvial deposits. A major debris flow complex sourced from the flank of Slide Mountain (Mount Rose) occupies the Ophir Creek canyon and is associated with at least five distinct flows including the 1983 debris flow, which caused significant damage to residential structures and infrastructure. Numerous other debris-flow deposits occur within smaller drainages of the eastern Carson Range. A massive landslide deposit along the northeastern side of Pleasant Valley is associated with large intact blocks of bedrock. The Mount Rose fan complex sourced from Jones, Whites, and Galena creeks records a long history of fan deposition (early to late Pleistocene) that includes fan deposits eroded from the Cascades arc volcanic rocks and multiple pulses of glacial outwash.

The east-dipping Carson Range fault bounds the eastern flank of the Carson Range and displaces Quaternary alluvial-fan, debris-flow, and glacial deposits across east-facing scarps that range in height from 2 to over 60 m. North of Washoe Valley, the Carson Range fault becomes distributed and is characterized by a broad zone of west- and east-facing scarps and grabens. The east-dipping Little Valley fault within the Carson Range displaces glacial outwash and moraines. A component of right-lateral displacement along the Little Valley fault is suggested by offset drainages along the eastern flank of Slide Mountain. West-dipping faults mapped and interpreted from gravity data along the eastern boundary of Washoe Valley similarly diffuse and anastamose with east-dipping faults in the northern part of the quadrangle to develop a structural accommodation zone occupied by the Steamboat Hills geothermal power plants.

This geologic map was funded in part by the USGS National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program under STATEMAP award number G18AC00198, 2019.

Geologic Map of the Independence Valley NW Quadrangle, Elko County, Nevada

Authors: Andrew V. ZuzaSeth DeeChristopher D. Henry, Michael W. Ressel, and Charles H. Thorman
Year: 2019
Series: Open-File Report 2019-03
Version: partially supersedes Open-File Report 2017-06
Format: plate: 40.5 x 28.5 inches, color; text: 18 pages, color
Scale: 1:24,000

View, download, or purchase the Independence Valley NW Quadrangle map.

The Independence Valley NW 7.5-minute quadrangle covers a part of the western Pequop Mountains and adjacent Independence Valley in eastern Elko County. The east-tilted Pequop Mountains have newly recognized Carlin-type gold deposits in a geographic and geologic setting distinct from similar deposits elsewhere in Nevada. Southeast-dipping Cambrian through Ordovician sedimentary rocks are exposed in the range front along the eastern edge of the map area. Eocene rhyolite dikes and sills, and Cretaceous granitic sills and pods locally intrude the oldest Cambrian stratigraphy. The Eocene intrusions may be part of a magmatic system that produced the heat source for the nearby Carlin-type mineralization. The range front is bound on the west by two west-dipping normal fault systems that accommodated late Cenozoic exhumation. Exposed in the hanging wall of the eastern fault system are late Cenozoic basin deposits that uncomfortably overlie Cambrian through Ordovician sedimentary rocks. Logs from three boreholes drilled into the Paleozoic rocks of the hanging wall during mineral exploration were used to help develop cross section A–A”. One of the boreholes encountered an approximately 60-m-thick zone of fault gouge and a fault sliver with repeated Ordovician stratigraphy. This fault zone may be correlative with the enigmatic Pequop fault observed in adjacent quadrangles. Another borehole advanced through the eastern range-front fault constrains its dip to 34° west. Correlation of stratigraphy across the eastern range-front fault suggests approximately 4 km of total dip-slip displacement during Cenozoic exhumation.

The oldest Cenozoic basin deposits exposed between the two range-front fault systems are Miocene tuffaceous sediments with a maximum measured bedding dip of 34° east. New 40Ar/39Ar dates bracket the age of the deposit between approximately 6 Ma and 10.8 Ma. The tuffaceous sediments are overlain by a megabreccia landslide deposit with individual bedrock blocks over 200 m long. The individual blocks have lithologic and textural characteristics similar to rocks exposed along the western flank of the modern Pequop Mountains, which may have been the source of these megabreccia deposits. The megabreccia is overlain by Pliocene fanglomerate deposits with nearly horizontal bedding. New 40Ar/39Ar dates from detrital sanidine grains constrain the age of the fanglomerate to younger than ca. 4.8 Ma. New dating of the Cenozoic basin deposits records the timing of the east-tilting of the range along range-bounding faults.

The western range-front fault, named the Independence Valley fault zone, has evidence for late Quaternary activity. In the footwall of the fault, alluvial-fan deposits of probable middle Pleistocene age are beveled onto the Cenozoic sediments. Late Quaternary displacement along the Independence Valley fault zone has uplifted these fan deposits a minimum of 30 m. The youngest fan deposits offset by the fault zone are of probable latest Pleistocene age, and are displaced by fault scarps up to 3 m high. In Independence Valley, lacustrine gravels are deposited on shorelines, beach bars, and spits recording the highstand and recessional stages of latest Pleistocene Lake Clover. An older lacustrine gravel deposit with a well-developed pedogenic carbonate soil horizon was mapped topographically above the latest Pleistocene shorelines along the western edge of the map area.

This map completes a suite of three new geologic maps in the Pequop Mountains including the Independence Valley NE and Pequop Summit 7.5-minute quadrangles. Together these maps and associated analytical datasets build upon prior research to address basic (characteristics and timing of major contraction, metamorphism, and extension) and applied (origin of Carlin-type gold deposits) geologic research questions. Contraction and metamorphism, which had been attributed to either the Jurassic Elko or Cretaceous Sevier orogenies, is likely Jurassic because of a newly mapped lamprophyre sill that intruded along the major thrust of the range. Although the lamprophyre that intruded the thrust is not yet dated, our dating of similar mafic intrusions across the range all yielded similar ca. 160 Ma ages. Furthermore, a continuous metamorphic gradient from amphibolite-grade Cambrian rocks to non-metamorphosed Permian rocks in the lower plate of the thrust raises questions about previous interpretations of overlying thrust plates that buried rocks to great depths and pressures. New thermochronology reveals three significant overprinting thermal pulses that affected the range—Middle Jurassic, Late Cretaceous, and Eocene—that resulted in the metamorphism and economic mineralization.

This geologic map was funded in part by the USGS National Cooperative Geologic Mapping Program under STATEMAP award number G16AC00186 (2017) and G18AC00198 (2019).

New Publication on 3D Modelling Programs

2019 Synopsis of Three-dimensional Geological Mapping and Modelling at Geological Survey Organizations

Authors: MacCormack, K.E. Berg, R.C. Kessler, H. Russell, H.A.J. Thorleifson, L.H.
Date: 2019-10-22
Download Special Report 112

Dick Berg, Director, Illinois State Geological Survey, shared this publication with AASG members.

“Since the publication in 2011 of the “Synopsis of Current Three-dimensional Geological Mapping and Modeling in Geological Survey Organizations” there has been an increased uptake of 3D mapping and modelling methods at geological survey organizations (GSOs) across provincial, territorial, state, and federal levels. This mirrors a growing recognition of the societal value of geoscience data management, geological mapping, visualization, and modelling applications to support science-based decision making in the areas of sustainable resource development, environmental protection, and public safety.

This update to the 2011 publication will provide geoscience organizations with a guide highlighting the recent successes, accomplishments, and challenges experienced by GSOs in the development and deployment of their 3D modelling programs. It will provide context for organizations looking to gain support within their organizations to build 3D modelling programs by leveraging the business cases and approaches highlighted by international surveys with successful 3D modelling programs.”