The Division’s Abandoned Mine Reclamation Program (AMRP), in cooperation with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), safeguarded 29 abandoned mine openings in the Mineral Canyon area in Grand County in mid-April. Closure methods included metal grates, machine backfills, and native stone walls designed to protect features of historic significance and animal habitat, while protecting the public from injuries or death. Abandoned mines are hazardous because they are no longer maintained, lack ventilation, and may collapse.
The BLM Moab Field Office designated Mineral Canyon as a high priority for abandoned mine closures due to high visitation and recreational use areas in the Mineral Bottom area. Mineral Bottom accesses Canyonlands National Park (White Rim Trail), Green River boat ramp, campground, and airstrip. Mineral Canyon’s Fruit Bowl area, located on a rim above the canyon, is used for high-lining and base jumping. Mineral Bottom also provides a designated area for high-lining, base jumping, and parachuting events in the Canyon/Horsethief BASE Jumping Focus Area.
Mineral Canyon was a modest uranium and vanadium producer having mineral discoveries and production beginning in the early to mid-1950s.
The project was funded by grants from the Office of Surface Mining Reclamation and Enforcement (OSMRE,) BLM and Department of Energy (DOE).