Rocky Mountain Section - 68th Annual Meeting - 2016

Paper No. 21-5
Presentation Time: 9:20 AM


HEDRICK, Elizabeth Anastasia and GONZALES, David A., Department of Geosciences, Fort Lewis College, 1000 Rim Drive, Durango, CO 81301,

The western San Juan Mountains are renowned for a mining history that spans 125 years. Most of the records of mining and related geologic activities in the region are preserved in hard copy documents and paper files, with few existing digital compilations.

The Camp Bird mine near Ouray, Colorado has a long and well-known mining history. It is also one the last remaining mines in the region that has a potential for future mining operations. There were numerous paper maps and geologic profiles of the mine, but no digital compilations. Thus, there was a desire to generate a digital compilation in order to make quick and accurate assessments for exploration, mine-development, depict and understand the geology of ore deposits, and preserve historical records.

In this research, historical and recent geologic and mine data from different levels of the Camp Bird mine were compiled to create a three dimensional map using GIS and Vulcan software. The product of this work provides a powerful tool to visualize the working and geology of the mine were utilized to create a three dimensional mine map for different levels of the Camp Bird mine. This process also provided a baseline for future geothermal and hydrological studies, in addition to environmental studies. This presentation highlights the steps and challenges used to integrate, edit, and display large amounts of complex spatial data.

This research also provides an example of how modern digital formats and methods can be used in the preservation of historical documents and maps currently vulnerable to loss, deterioration from age, and poor archiving conditions. Virtual reconstruction provides further academic and economic value by creating a digital database, complete with three dimensional models of mine workings, mitigating the onerous challenge of sharing historic data for mining activities and within the public domain.

  • 21-5_Hedrick.pptx