The Goldfield Colorado Star Mine – David Lane Astrophotography

The Goldfield Colorado Star Mine – David Lane Astrophotography


Victor Colorado Star Mine

The Victor/Goldfield Colorado Star Mine

Jimmy and I were headed home from out west after 9 days of shooting images. In case you have missed it I really find mining and specifically the buildings and mechanisms to bore holes miles into the ground extremely interesting.

I managed to find this little area with a really cool walking trail through half collapsed building remnants, and just a bit away from the scattered lights of Goldfield a very small town of maybe 20 houses. This area was also behind the hill on the right from Victor Colorado (far right glow.) This was the second to last shot of the night. The first two had happened with a very tiny sliver of a moon still visible on the horizon. By now the moon had slipped behind the hill to the west and a dark night calm night awaited introspection.

If you look really carefully in the center you can see a peek-a-boo shot of Jimmy (my loyal GMC Jimmy) just showing. If you had x-ray eyes you could see not only the fence in front of Jimmy but the KEEP OUT sign as well. Sometimes you just have to do what you have to do to please your Astro-friends!

I was really pleased with how the Milky Way turned out considering that Colorado Springs just to the left edge of the image and distant Pueblo was to the right. Recovering the highlights in this image not only required an excellent Light Pollution Filter but also a lot of astro manipulation to deal with it.

For those that find such things interesting, the two headframes are the Grace Greenwood headframe (left) and the Deadwood headframe (center.) Both were moved here in 2012-2013 by the Cripple Creek & Victor Gold mining company in an effort to preserve the mining heritage of the area.

The Grace Greenwood mine was owned by the Anaconda Mining Company. The development of the mine was begun in1902-03. The company owned 100 acres of land with several mines operated by lessees. Some of the mines included the Half Moon and Kittie M. The Greenwood mine lasted over half a century closing for good in 1959.

The Grace Greenwood gallows frame and hoist house were placed here on the reclaimed Altman Backfill above the Vindicator Valley near the town of Goldfield.

The Deadwood Mine was a quite minor mine but its beautiful headframe remains as a testament to the intense effort to blast through solid rock.

If you ever get the chance to visit Victor Colorado “The City of Mines” it is way worth it. It is amazing how much mining took place here. You can also stop by Cripple Creek as well but in my mind, Victor is the place to wander about and see a virtually untouched original 1900s mining town.

Wandering around these ruined buildings at night was so interesting. The connection to miners and times lost was real and visceral. The hulking buildings forming black silhouettes against the sky whispering their souls to the winds, atop an 11,000-foot mountain for decade after decade alone, awaiting their ultimate fate.

Please Like Comment and Enjoy! This one was tough but I hope you enjoy it.

EXIF: 35 images clipped left for light pollution and a pile of rocks. 55mm f1.6 ISO 8,000