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Maricopa County Arizona

As the fifth largest gold-producing county in Arizona, Maricopa County produced 428,000 ounces of gold, primarily from the Vulture Mine, with 3,000 ounces attributed to small placer deposits.

South of Aguila, by 15 miles, in the northwest part of the Big Horn mountains, you will find the El Tigre Mine, which consists of 12 claims that produced lode gold.

Cave Creek district is located 25 to 55 miles north of Phoenix. If you go south 1 mile from Cave Creek, you will find the Mormon Girl Mine, which was a minor lode gold mine. If you go southwest 2.5 miles, you will find the Copper Top Mine lode gold mine. At the Cave Creek and New River turnoff, which is southwest of Cave Creek by 4 miles, you will find panning gold on both sides of the road. If you go west 2.4 miles for Cave Creek, to a north-trending road, you go along this rd 1.5 miles, area around the old Go John Mine you will find gold by panning. If you go north a few miles, on the slope east of the main watercourse, the Phoenix and Maricopa mines were the site of 100 stamp mill and cyanide plant which produced lode gold, about 17,000 ounces produced, 1890-1959, gold associated with molybdenum and vanadium. If you go north 13 miles, there is a dirt road to the west, and here you will find the Rackensack Mine and south to another old mine that produced lode gold. Other mines include Mex Hill, Lucky Gus, A. B. Bell, Dallas-Ft. Worth and Gold Reef all produced lode gold.

South of Phoenix, by 9 miles, in the north part of the Salt River mountains, You can find the Max Delta Mine lode gold. If you go 18 miles in the northern foothills of the Phoenix mountains, the Winifred district, the lack of White Mine produced lode gold. If you go northwest 45 miles, along San Domingo Wash for 6 to 7 miles, you will find the San Domingo placers. Along Old Woman Gulch, a south tributary, large placers operate with coarse gold nuggets. In black sand deposits, you can find placer gold in all areas, arroyos, and gulches. In the lower country, gravels, often in black sands, placers contain finely distributed gold.

The Wickenburg area of the entire region shows scores of old mine dumps, which occasionally yield large gold nuggets due to the carelessness of early miners. Southeast 7 miles from Wickenburg, in the sands and gravels of the Hassayampa River's entire length, there are productive placers for several miles below the mouth of San Domingo Wash. The Hassayampa placers were very productive from 1934-49. Southwest 14 miles and 9 miles west of the Hassayampa River, at the south margin of the Vulture mountains, you will find the Vulture Mine, which was the largest producer of gold in the county (366,000 ounces of gold), 1863-1959, site of big mills and 100-ton cyanide plant which was used to leach old dump tailings in 1934. In the pediment of Red Top Basin northwest of the Vulture Mine, an area of about 3 square miles, the Vulture placers which continue down Vulture Wash for 2 miles southwest of the mine, many dry wash workings, pits, etc. for their placer gold content. West 18 miles and 2.5 miles south of U.S. 60, you will find the Sunrise Mine lode gold mine. Northeast, a large mining area extending into Yavapai county, produced some lode gold.


Red Picacho Placers

Reported By: William Southern

It is located in the San Domingo District on the South flank of the Wickenburg Mountains, northeast of the Hassayampa River, Townships 6S and 7S, and Range 4W. You can find it on the USGS Maps of Wickenburg and Red Picacho 7.5-minute quadrangles.
The placers are found in San Domingo Wash, most of its tributaries, and nearby washes. Much gold has also been seen on hill tops and slopes.

This district has produced the most placer gold in Maricopa County. Today this area is still producing a lot of good gold, metal detecting, and dry washing. Small nuggets are fairly common, with some up to 1 ounce found with metal detectors.

Get a copy of "Placer Gold Deposits Of Arizona" by Maureen G. Johnson for more information.

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