Forest Service seeks comments about mining in McCullough
BRECKENRIDGE – The U.S. Forest Service is accepting more comments about a proposed mine operation in McCullough Gulch after the applicant, George Stroup, changed his proposed operating plans.
The land is public, but Stroup owns unpatented mining claims in the area and can mine there if he wins approval from the Forest Service.
Dillon District Ranger Jamie Connell said Stroup originally proposed removing and processing ore at the site using heavy equipment and a small milling facility. Stroup modified his plans after hearing comments from the public.
The new plan focuses more on exploration and minerals studies, including repairing the entrance and extracting surface and subsurface ore samples from the Christine Mine.
The mine is located about two and a half miles west of the end of McCullough Gulch Road on the northwest side of Quandary Peak. For the first mile, the access route would follow a historic road separate from the Forest Service trail to Quandary Falls. The remaining mile would require trail construction to accommodate the all-terrain vehicles Stroup proposes to use for transporting ore.
Stroup wants to mine the area for three years, beginning in the early summer and ending in the late fall of each year. He hopes to start next summer.
Forest Service officials will accept comments about the proposal until Dec. 20, at which point Connell will conduct an Environmental Assessment on the project. An Environmental Assessment is less stringent than a full-blown Environmental Impact Analysis but will determine how mining operations in the area will impact the land and outline other alternatives.
The Forest Service also will determine if additional mitigation efforts at the site will be necessary and ensure that any alternative selected is consistent with the White River National Forest Plan.
The Forest Service will use comments to identify issues and develop alternatives. People commenting must include their names, addresses, telephone numbers and organizations they represent – if any – specific facts, concerns or issues and supporting reasons for their stance.
For more information, contact Paul Semmer at (970) 262-3448, e-mail to email@example.com.
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