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C to C 2020
Day 6 - Friday, July 17, 2020
Mollie Kathleen Mine Tour

Today's destination is the Mollie Kathleen mine tour at Cripple Creek Colorado. While we're in no rush, there won't be much time to waste. Up and packed we were on the move. We continued on, up the "forest service road" where we saw the UPS truck last evening. The road and scenery were nicely enjoyed - smooth and quite scenic. This found us back on asphalt about 1/2 way between Lake City and Gunnison. We made the stop in Gunnison for food and fuel before moving east. From there it was non-stop to Cripple Creek.

At Cripple Creek we purchased tickets and had 30 minutes to wait for our tour. We walked about the area as well as took a few videos of the lift mechanics (nicely painted). The tour is good and worth the stop. After the tour we drove around the large, surface mine and headed towards home with a quick drive through dinner at Woodland Park. The I-25 drive was uneventful (no significant traffic jam).

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0) Web page start
1) Beautiful valley ride
2) Mine tour - pre-tour walkabout
3) Mine tour

A clear sky morning - nice for packing camp.

Popping out of forest land into private land - a nice ranch with green grass.

Nice riding.

Sign me up!
Much lower traffic flow than the valley houses near Lake City of yesterday.

US-50 between Gunnison and Monarch Pass

Cripple Creek

Mining relics

`wonder if this was the original cable and drum for the hoist?

Headlift mechanical room

The Chrysler V8 is backup to the electric motor. The tour guide said that the standard lift speed is two minutes for the 1000 feet lift. When the V8 Hemi is used, it takes 16 minutes - but he says - it's geared low and has fantastic torque.

Curious, I checked HP specs for a 1953 331 Hemi and I see numbers in the 180 to 250 HP range. The electric motor is listed as 150 HP. Why the possibly more powerful engine takes longer than the motor - curious.

Next to the lift room is the air compressor room. These supply air pressure into the air lines in the mine.

Lift operation

Yellow scoop

Red drill

Holes drilled and filled for blasting


Looking UP at where ore has been removed.

Vertical Drill

To the right of the ladders is a slide. The slide has a cable where tools could be hauled up, siding in the slide.

Tool lift

The mine train - the yellow tank is filled with compressed air (120PSI typical working pressure). Below the tank is the motor much the same as a classic steam driven locomotive.

Mine Train

A workshop in the mine

Rail bike

The lift assembly for the heavy buckets.

Bucket empty

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Info sign

Info sign

Open Range Cattle

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