Silver Cycle Mine Remediation
A full suite of reclamation activities were conducted at the Silver Cycle Mine, located approximately 1 mile upstream of the outlet of Gilson Gulch, near Idaho Springs. Project elements involved:
- installing a proper closure for the mine adit in accordance with DRMS specifications;
- routing the Silver Cycle drainage to Gilson Gulch in an impermeable lined channel to prevent further leaching of mine waste contaminants from the mine drainage;
- removing mine waste from both sides of Gilson Gulch, which is in the floodway of the channel;
- stabilizing the channel of Gilson Gulch so that it can pass a storm flow with a 25 year recurrence interval without any erosion of mine waste in the Silver Cycle area;
- consolidating the mine waste pile within the existing footprint of the pile; grading and shaping the mine waste to promote runoff and prevent infiltration into the pile;
- topsoiling the mine waste; and
- revegetating the disturbed areas at the Silver Cycle and Euphrates mine claim sites with native plant materials (seed mix).
Water quality benefits have been obtained from:
- Preventing infiltration of the mine drainage into the waste pile;
- Preventing precipitation-caused erosion and runoff from the mine waste material from contaminating Gilson Gulch; and
- Removal of mine waste from the Gilson Gulch channel.