Trimountain Mine

“Of all the mines that had sunk shafts into the great Baltic Lode, the Trimountain could be considered the ugly ducking of the bunch. Besieged by mismanagement and difficult geography the mine was never able to fully take advantage of the copper bounty below its feet. From its establishment in 1899 up until its closure in 1920 the mine was only able to produce minimal profits – only about 3.5 million when all was said and done. (It’s neighbor to the south – the Champion – made over 25 million during the same period) Even after Copper Range took over operations in 1925, it could only keep the struggling mine afloat for another five years. It closed for good in 1930.”

A Trimountain Postscript

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Though I was technically done with our tour of the Trimountain Mine after leaving the No.4’s hoist building, once again thanks to fellow explorer/historian Bruce Groeneveld we have a few more interesting views of the old mine yet to enjoy. These photos are a continuation to those I featured a …

Within the Castle Walls (p2)

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It’s been said many times here on CCE that a typical hoist foundation takes the shape of a capital “H”, and that comparison holds true even when the surrounding hoist building itself is still intact as well. Here at the Trimountain No.4, the two legs of that “H” shape – …

Within the Castle Walls (p1)

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After taking a long loop around the outside of the hoist building’s towering walls we were confronted with a particularly interesting challenge – getting inside. While the foundation featured several small openings at ground level that we could crawl through, those same openings ended up being a good six feet …

Standing Tall

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Though we’ve been to the Trimountain several times before, we had never previously made it to the mine’s northern reaches and the No.4 shaft. After the discovery of the No.3’s massive engine and boiler complex we had just assumed we had found the mine’s most impressive remains and didn’t venture …

In the Arcadian Style

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As I mentioned in yesterday’s post, the Trimountain Mine outfitted its shafts with structures and equipment acquired from the defunct Arcadian property. These items included three almost brand spanking new shaft / rock houses, which Trimountain proceeded to place atop three shafts of its own. While I’m not sure which …

The Many Faces of the No.2

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We had discussed earlier the oddities of Trimountain’s No.2 rock house, a building whose ruins spoke of a structure of much different configuration then the one the Sanborn maps describe. The overview map included with yesterday’s post illustrates that point, as the shaft rock house combination shown there looks nothing …

Even More Foundations

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With the compressor house ruins now behind us we had succeeded in exploring the majority of the Trimountain No.2’s surface plant; a collection that included the rock house, boiler house, hoist house, and the recently explored compressor house. All those buildings can clearly be seen in the old archive photo …

Even More Ruins

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The amount of ruins to be found at the old Trimountain No.2 site is a bit baffling, though in honesty the amount of old structures here is not substantially greater then other sites. It’s just that those buildings are scattered about rather far and wide, and lay across a rather …

Under a Canopy of Yellow

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Leaving the sandstone and brick embellished hoist foundation behind, we headed across the old roadway at the Trimountain No.2 to a ruin of a slightly different make. Instead of the calico draped foundations found earlier we found ourselves looking at a mammoth grey block of concrete rising up from the …

One More Look

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We’ve been here several times before, featuring this particular hoist two times here on the pages of CCE. Its a beauty, built in a refined old school style that utilized such classical touches as sandstone buttons and red brick frosting. It was built to house a rather impressive 2500 HP …

A Shaft House’s Remains

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Like many mines, the Trimountain utilized a combo shaft / rock house for their shafts. These buildings combined a stand alone shaft house – a building that traditionally only served to protect the shaft entrance from the elements – with a rock house, a building where rock coming up from …

Pale Walls and Fiery Foliage

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While the No.1 shaft may have been the Trimountain’s first, it would quickly become eclipsed by its younger brother to the north – the No.2. It would be here that the mine would begin making its money, and because of that it was here that the company elected to instal …

A Mine at Three Mountains

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The southern range’s first copper exploit was an ill fated attempt made along the base of Whealkate Mountain, one of several peaks rising high above the neighboring Portage Valley. That attempt ultimately failed, and it would take several more decades before those peaks would be invaded again by those searching …

A Den of Steam Engines…

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Trimountain No. 3 – the ruins of which we were currently exploring – had an interesting layout for its surface plant. Instead of a collection of individual buildings housing the mine’s compressors, hoist and boilers; the shaft utilized one large building that contained all three. The result today is a …

Another Trimountain Boiler House

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After our discovery of the concrete stack at No. 3 we knew that the boiler house ruins would not be too far away. Near the base of the stack was a collection of concrete remains which looked to have once been the stack’s flue. We follow them a short distance …

A Lone Stack

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Making our way back uphill to the No.2 surface plant (which we have visited previously HERE), we decided to once again climb its massive rock pile and take a look around. From the top we were greeted to a sweeping panorama of fall brilliance. Ahead of us – piercing through …

A Short Trestle

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Leaving the boiler house remains behind, we took a stroll through the forest in search of the old rail bed that we initially used to find this shaft location. It wasn’t long until we found a short ridge running along a straight line through the woods. Climbing to the top …

Trimountain Boiler House

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After leaving the hoist ruins behind at Trimountain No.1, we turned our attention towards finding the next piece in the puzzle – the boiler house. It was from within this building that the steam used by the hoisting engine was produced. Since both buildings would have been connected by a …

Arches and Sandstone

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A hoist was simply a tool. The building which housed it – shelter. The existence of both were strictly functional, their purpose was simply to make money for the company. The hoist and its house were never intended as art, or as some great monuments to the past. But here …

Trimountain No.1

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Of all the mines that had sunk shafts into the great Baltic Lode, the Trimountain could be considered the ugly ducking of the bunch. Besieged by mismanagement and difficult geography the mine was never able to fully take advantage of the copper bounty below its feet. From its establishment in …

Powderhouse in the Woods

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Man’s pursuit of the Earth’s mineral riches is yet another violent expression of his dominion over the natural world – practiced with the destructive force of explosives. With these powerful weapons we’re able to extend our influence into the Earth itself, thousands of feet below the surface we were meant …

A Collection of Ruins

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The Trimountain as it looked during operation, a more expansive surface plant then we were originally prepared for As we branch out our exploration away from the hoist and shaft ruins, we quickly discovered that we had stumbled across an expansive operation. Atop hills, along the side of hills, down …

Building a Hoist Foundation

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We have seen a great deal of hoist foundation remains in our travels. As is the case with most copper mining infrastructure, they all tend to follow a similar design. The hoist we found at Trimountain was no different, complete with threaded rods and red brick. But what Trimountain offered …

One Frosty Morning

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a rare trip to the south range While circumstances continue to keep us from exploring, I’ll take another trip to the archives for today’s post. I have had many requests to feature more sights from along the southern range of the Copper Country, more specifically the mines of the Copper …