Exploring past coromandel mines

Ok…back on thread. Sorry to you ADHD boys :laughing:

A wee stope in a Coromandel mine. A stope being a mined out area of gold bearing quartz reef. Leaving a void, open space, where the quartz used to be. If you left click on the pics it will enlarge them. :+1:

This is where the reef broke out in the cliff face to the outside & the entrance.

And this going back into the hill. You will notice a timber stull still jammed between the foot wall & hanging wall towards the bottom left of the stope.

Bit of rusting machinery & boiler remains.

Now to give it a bit of perspective & the size of this stope. This is my son in the photo. The stope disappearing into the blackness behind him further into the hill.

Then him climbing down a bit further. Below him it is almost vertical. You wouldn’t want to fall past that point.

Below him the stope is full of water

JW :cowboy_hat_face:


You would think that due to the size of it that they may have missed one little corner that is still full of gold

Hi Dave. That is what I was looking for when I was in there. If you go back to the first photo, in the right hand corner come back to the left just a little & you will see a white line of stone. That is quartz. :+1: The grey lines in it could quite possibly be silver/gold sulphides.

Bit like this sample that is from the Golden Cross mine, Waitekauri, when Coeur Gold were mining it. I was given this sample by the assayer who lived over the road from my ex mother in law.

I can’t recall what it assayed per ton but she said it was quite rich. The black/blue grey is silver sulphide & in the dark black lines with the aid of an eye glass you can see gold specks & smudges of gold.

It is what they called Rainbow quartz.

These ones are from The Talisman mine, Karangahake. This piece I found on an old waste dump. It nutted off on my old Garrett coin detector.

This one a diamond cut sample from the Talisman Mine. Similar to the Golden Cross stuff.

This one I found up the Thames coast somewhere up in the hills. It too nutted off on my detector.

I have some pics of the Golden Cross mines underground working face on the quartz reef from when I was went under ground with a friends father who worked there. I think they are on old school 35mm film. I will try to hunt them down & copy them & post them up.


JW :cowboy_hat_face:


Extremely interesting facebook page and info above!!!
40 odd years ago a local of Maratoto plonked me on the back of his bike and showed me some history of Maratoto. Remains of an old kauri dam and the 100 steps the poor horses had to go up, pools on the top of a ridge, and the best of all…an old steam train in the middle of fern …no doubt all rusted away by now. Saw the old gold stamper near McBrins creek and more. Sadly havent got the energy to go hiking back and visit. Had another old guy show me a couple of mines in Thames years ago, one of the shafts sunk into the hill behind his house…prob full of rubbish now.

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I know the Maratoto pretty well. Have spent a lot of time up there. Mostly looking for a lost rich gold reef. Story goes that back in the depression years a team of guys were bulldozing tracks to get access to a lot of the waste Kauri timber that was not considered worth while back in the days of the Kauri feeling as they were spoilt for choice back then. But to these guys that waste was worth money. One of the guys pushing a track through the bush hit a rock that broke the corner off his dozer blade. He was pissed off. He jumped down from the dozer to get the broken off piece of blade to get it welded back on. In the process he saw the bit of rock that had broken off as well & threw that into his dozer. Thinking nothing of it. Years later when a friend was visiting him at his home his friend commented about the rock he was using as a door stop. He told his friend of how he came about it & where it was from. His friend asked if he could get it assayed. Turned out to be a very rich specimen of gold in quartz. Needles to say the guy could not remember the exact place all those years later as he had been involved up in the Maratoto bush all over the place chasing the Kauri. Not going into too much detail a mate of mine got hold of an old aerial black & white photo taken by Whites Aviation that showed the dozer tracks in the bush quite clearly, even though there was regrowth happening. This was superimposed over a map of know quartz reefs that were not mined back in the day but known of & mapped. Trouble being that of course by now the bush had totally grown back & it was near impossible to follow these dozer tracks. Although the bench cuts were still sort of there. It was in steep country & of course there had been many slips. It became too hard basket. There is more to this story I will carry on with at a later time.
Was the steam train you speak of a boiler up in the bush? There is one up McBrinns stream along with a few burdans. I got a few ounces of mercury amalgam out of those burdans & was told that one of them spilt its entire contents onto the ground. I have some photos somewhere. Will try to rat them out.

JW :cowboy_hat_face:


Hi JW. The steam train wasnt on the McBrinn side, but off “the Loop” direction up on the ridge. I wonder if that bulldozer was working where I think it was. There used to be an old abandoned farmhouse…remains hard to see even when I was there and what had been pasture had regenerated back into secondary bush on the same side but well before the train. I regret not taking a photo there, but do have photo somewhere of the old miners huts the pig hunters used to use. Those were the days you found undamaged relics with a story of an era gone by. Some areas Ive revisited since have been re-discovered again by others and mostly trashed. Did you ever meet Patch? Made beautiful honey mead. He was a squatter way back then who built a home in the bush when nobody minded and life was so much simpler. Lawdy, Im getting like Lammerlaw with nostalgic memories…although my memories differ from his!!! Lol!!!

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It makes me wonder as 3D ground imagining gold detectors get cheaper what they might show over some of this ground !

They are a bunch of marxist tree hugging wigwam dwellers who think they have a moral right to tell everyone else how to live. Hence the death of the mining industry in nee Zealand.

Not that i have a strong opinion about them !


Was in here yesterday and found some interesting rock specimens. Will do a more thorough look another time. Planning on searching every inch or the area. Already know a ton of hidden mines there but have never bothered to look at the rock in them.