Copper Falls MineMines

A Copper Falls Map

As I’ve noted before, Petherick Hill is littered with a fortune’s worth of old mine workings, over 35 shafts and adits when all is said and done. Though accessing a total of seven fissure veins and several miles worth of the Ashbed lode, all these openings were part of the same mine – the Copper Falls. Originally the entire hill was considered the Copper Falls Mine, until the company sold off sections to open offspring mines such as the Petherick and Arnold. Its all very confusing unless you have a map to put it all in the proper order. So towards that end, I present to you the definitive copper falls area map (click on the image above to view).

The map showcases each of the Copper Falls known fissures, marked in red. Yellow squares represent known shafts, and triangles are adits (But keep in mind there were far more shafts and adits sunk into the earth here then this map notes). Gray blotches are tailing piles, either poor rock or stamp sand. The map also marks known ruins, as well as various other points of interest that can be found along the way.

Keep in mind, the map above is for reference purposes only. Portions of the old mine site are now under private ownership and should be respected as such.

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  1. WOW! doesn’t cut it in terms of how great this is! Thank you Mike for such a great resource, it really helps put things in perspective. Also for someone without a great sense of direction like me this will be invaluble in both finding ruins and having a frame of reference in staying away from those dangerous or private areas one ought to stay away from.

  2. Nicely done!

    I really want to check out the *old* stamp mill location. I’d noticed the small area of sands there on aerials, but I can’t figure out how to get there, short of total bushwhacking. Hmmmm… bushwhacking it is!

  3. Hi Mike, Do you or anyone else know if the Copper Falls powder house is on private property. It is probably the only powder house still standing that I have yet to see in person. I have a real good idea where to go to get there, but is it private? I have my fingers crossed that it’s not. Thanks.

  4. Jim, I check my plat book frequently when going ruin hunting. I believe that this one lies on timber company land. There is some private property down the hill to the north, but it’s fairly far away from the powder house.

  5. While I’m at it… I went to check out the powder house and dam last weekend. The snowshoeing was lousy (the thaw-refreeze really made everything solid), but the ruins were beautiful! The old dam up at Copper Falls lake is interesting. There is actually a very long earth berm along the west edge of the lake. The dam seems to be long gone, but there’s a clear break in the berm near the north end. I’m eager to go back in the summer and check it out again.

  6. Is that the dam that broke and flooded down the Copper Falls Mine shooting the tram cars out the adit and into the boilers?During the time when Arnold took it over.

  7. Thanks DC, yep I know about the private land at the bottom of the hill. I can get around that, no problem. So you made it to the dam? Was Owl Creek frozen over, or have things thawed out this early? Thanks as always.

  8. Copper Falls lake and the top of the creek are frozen over, but (due to recent thawing) the ice might be a bit thin. We’re back to freezing again, but I don’t know how sound the ice is, after a week of 40+!

    No clue if this was the broken dam. I could certainly imagine it, though…

  9. Mike, another great post, too bad this means more looky-loos in my backyard at Eagle Harbor! I was happy running around these sites on my own…
    Seriously, to those going enjoy yourselves, I do have a couple of insider tips – if going to to the Copper Falls main area / Bluff lookout / homestead area take the route Mike took by getting in off the Central. The Copper Falls townsite (along the EH cut-off rd) has had a population explosion and now has a year-round resident along with a few more in the summer. Some of the summer residents have been posting no tresspassing / rock picking signs lately. While I don’t know of any recent incidents it’s best not to go ripping up the road from the townsite or do any large scale rock turn over on the piles. Coming in over the Central road and they will never know you were there, and it’s a much easier road to hike or drive…
    They other warning is that they were doing some large scale logging in the area last summer – i.e. log transport trucks barrelling down the Central Rd, l was on a bike last year when one flew by, left me really wondering what would have happened had I been up there in my truck, not sure if they will be at it again, but I’m guessing they will…

    Last a reply to DC – there is a two-track to the “old” mill site via the much larger sand area, so no real bushwacking. Not much to see back there as it has been a popular party spot for some time so the level of disturbance has been high…

  10. I believe the dam burst that flooded the Copper Falls was up on the Owl Creek Lake. From our experience the lake is much much smaller then it was at one time, which might have been a result of that break.

    A beaver dam on Meadow Lake caused the motel wash out at Jacobs Creek as well as helping to uncover the Arnold ruins.

    The private land here sits around the old townsite, which is very much marked private now. But your safe further up the hill towards the bluff and powder house, as that land is timber company land. But there is logging going on currently as others have said.

  11. I thought it was the wood crib dam supplying water to the Arnold mine boilers that failed and washed down Jacobs Creek, at least that is the story I read somewhere. thinking a little, it could have been the beaver dam failure that caused the crib dam failure. I’ll have to locate the story to check now.

  12. DC, after having a look at the aerials, I think i am mistaken. I’m thinking of the far west portion of the main sands, I always thought that it was separate area due to the tree line, and on the roundabout way i’ve gotten there, but that trip is not far enough in. That being said there are numerous routes branching off to odd spots around the edge of sands and marsh so you may have some luck after all. I’ve cut my explorations of that area off after getting horribly stuck in 2 inches of water and bottomless sand and muck mix…

  13. Steve — ah, yeah, I think that the tree line may have something to do with Owl creek. I’ve been over to that side, and it’s pretty well trashed. So, bushwhacking up on the hill it is!

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