Tag Archives: Hoist House

High Walls and Mandibles

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From the road it doesn’t look like much, its bulk so well hidden in the foliage that it’s easily missed. Its true size and dimension weren’t even that apparent until we were almost right on top of it, its layered facade rising over a story above our heads. The blank wall’s true purpose is not …

A Sole Survivor

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For a time the Atlantic Mine was the king of its domain, the only operational copper mine south of Houghton until the arrival of the Baltic near the turn of the century. Though mining a much inferior product, the Atlantic had the advantage of incredibly smirk and resourceful managers who …

Atop the Foundation

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After taking a walk around the old maintenance trenches surrounding the Lake Mine’s hoist house, it was time to tackle the elephant in the room and take a climb up atop the hoist foundation itself. Unfortunately it looked to be a daunting task, considering the size and height of the …

Breaching the Walls

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Leaving the boiler house remains behind, we take a short stroll down the sloping landscape towards that concrete wall we saw down the way. While the remains of the boiler house were not particularly impressive, the concrete wall that soared above us was a bit more substantial, its bulk dominating …

An Isle Royale Encore (p1)

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More then a century ago the Isle Royale Mine was the king of the mountain, sitting high atop the hill overlooking Houghton and the Portage valley. Its line of rock houses and soaring piles of poor rock stood as monuments to a more prosperous and industrious time. Yet as was …

Into The Pit

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With the majority of the hoist foundation’s topside explored, it was time to drop down into the “pit” and check out the rest. The “pit” is the part of the foundation that makes the middle part of the “H” shape. It is raised up higher the the surrounding basement, but …

Back on Top

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Emerging out of the dark tunnels underneath the Gratiot Mine’s hoist building we find ourselves walking within a narrow trench along the front of the structure. At first we thought we were trapped with no way up to the top, but thankfully the outside foundation wall is lower here then …

In the Trenches

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It lay shrouded in a green veil of brush and foliage, the surrounding trees and grass cuddled up close to its pale gray walls. It was a surreal sight to behold after exiting the dark dampness of the woods surrounding it, a thundering announcement of man’s presence in the wilderness …

The Missing Link

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We’ve managed to explore a great deal of ruins at the old Ogima shaft, otherwise known as the Mass C. In addition to the shaft itself, we’ve found the remains of its impressive sized rockhouse, dry house, and even a boiler house. Yet for all these discoveries there was a …

On the Inside

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After checking out the Mass Mine’s Hoist House from its outside, we turned our attention to what could be found inside the walls. Luckily for us it the foundation wall on the building’s south end were much lower then the rest, allowing us to simply step over it to enter …

Concrete Walls

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Sitting atop a rugged bluff deep within the interior of Ontonagon County sits the Mass Mine, an industrial endeavor that operated under various legal identities for close to seventy years. If a mine’s success can be determined by the legacy it left behind, then the Mass could be considered a …

The Opechee

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According to legend, the Robin was a bird in search of purpose who found his calling in his unique ability to sense the approach of spring. As the robin arrived the rest of the bird kingdom would soon follow, secure in the knowledge that springs bounty was soon upon them. …

Michigan Mine Illustrated

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The Michigan Mine’s large engine complex is a rather complicated structure. From the ground the structure’s remains resemble a barrage of concrete pedestals and walls sprawled out in the woods with no discernible pattern, rhyme, or reason. A good deal of this has to do with the building’s evolution over …

A Hoist of Unknown Origins

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After the oddity that was the “A” hoist down at the west end of the Michigan’s Hoist complex, we were ready to expect about anything as we made our way to the opposite end of the building to check out the “B” hoist which also shared the space. Even then, …

The Hoist from Another World

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While last week we may have given the impression that we had stumbled across the Michigan Mine’s hoist complex after exploring its boiler complex, there’s no way that could have happened. The hoist complex was immense, and the concrete wall that made up its southern foundation seemed to stretch on …

A Hoist of Champion’s (p2)

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From where it stood, the Champion hoist we were looking at appeared out of place with the rest of the mine’s surface plant. Its location along the road put it almost smack dab in the middle from the C and D shafts (the No.2 and No.3), and rather far from …

A Hoist of Champion’s (p1)

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When it comes to the grand buildings of the old empire, very few have managed to survive intact to this day. This is especially true when it comes to any building that once housed any type of steam powered equipment – hoists, compressors, boilers – as these were often the …

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 …

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 …

The Caldwell (p3)

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It didn’t take us long to find the Caldwell’s Hoist house, as it was just a few feet from the boiler house ruins we had just explored. As would be expected the hoist foundation was a bit more substantial in almost every way, especially in the terms of the size …

A Beast of a Hoist

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The relationship between a shaft and its hoist is a complicated one, and by no means monogamous. In fact the very nature of a shaft is to be polygamous and take many hoists during its lifetime. In the beginning a shaft is first paired with a rather small and diminutive …

A Hoist of a Different Breed

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With the special St. Anne’s series over, we now return our attention back to exploring the old Victoria Mine… The North Country Scenic Trail is the longest scenic trail in the United States, running for over 4600 miles across seven states between New York and North Dakota. Along the way …