Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Hatcher Pass


The last Saturday of our trip to Alaska we drove from Glennallen to Palmer via the Glenn Highway (see previous post) and enjoyed the scenery along the way.  Arriving in Palmer early in the afternoon where we found the motel we had booked, purchased a few groceries for the weekend and then left for Hatcher Pass.  The road through the pass runs from Palmer and Wasilla to Willow and goes through the Talkeetna Mountains.  We had planned to drive the whole way through the pass but ended up spending so much time at Independence Mine that we only drove to the top of the pass and then headed back down the way we had come.  The day had started out heavily overcast, but cleared as we headed up to the mine and the pass.  By the time we were finished, however, the sun had disappeared once again and the clouds were moving in again.

The Independence Mine was the second richest lode in Alaska.  The mine closed in 1952 and is now a state historical park.  According to the Alaska DNR, "What is now called Independence Mine was once two mines: The Alaska Free Gold Mine on Skyscraper Mountain, and Independence Mine on Granite Mountain. In 1938 the two were bought together under one company, the Alaska-Pacific Consolidated Mining Company (APC). With a block of 83 mining claims, APC became the largest producer in the Willow Creek Mining District. The claims covered more than 1,350 acres and included 27 structures. In its peak year, 1941, APC employed 204 men, blasted nearly a dozen miles of tunnels, and produced 34,416 ounces of gold worth $1,204,560; today $17,208,000. Twenty-two families lived in nearby Boomtown, with eight children attending the Territorial School."

Little Susitna River





Hatcher Pass







Independence Mine

















































Hatcher Pass





parasails


 Little Susitna River




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