Where are some lost mines in the Pacific Northwest?
If you travel to the mouth of the Yankee Fork in what
is called Sawtooth County you will be lost of one of the famous lost mines in
As the legend goes, Isaac T. Swim found gold
bearing quartz here in 1881 all by accident. He was there during the summer and
had tried in vain to find anything worth searching any longer. About the time he
was ready to pack it in, he noticed some trees that had been uprooted by a heavy
storm. He glanced underneath one of them and to his astonishment, he saw
something shiny. He took his find to Challis in Custer County to file his claim.
He hurried back to claim to work it prior to winter setting in. He stayed only a
few days and then along with some ore samples he went back to Snake River
country. He spent the cold winter months there.
In June of 1882, Swim took some companions with him
to the Salmon River country. When they reached Salmon River, it was high from
the spring run-off and he thought it would be best to wait a few days until the
river went down. However, the men with him wanted to forge ahead. Swim agreed to
cross the raging river alone, stake the claim, and then return to show them the
Swim did not return. The group began to worry and
started a search for him. They followed the tracks from his house and a bit
downstream, the body of his horse was found. His body was not recovered until
late in the summer. His partners headed to the location of the mine that Swim
had found. No one ever found the gold quartz that Swim had discovered. They did
find his marker across the river from the mouth of the Yankee Fork, but could
never find any type of treasure nearby.
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