Gold & Silver Mine Tours
Explore the history of Clear Creek County on a gold and silver mine tours.
Argo Tunnel and Mill
The tunnel, the mill and the mines provided employment for over eighty years to thousands of miners. Over two hundred million dollars of rich ore was sent directly to the smelters in Denver; the Argo Mill recovered over one hundred million dollars of gold values and these values were calculated when gold was $18.00 to $35.00 per ounce.
The five-story mill was renovated and opened to the public as a historic and educational tour in 1978. Most of the equipment used for processing the gold ore remains in place. The bottom level of the mill serves as a museum displaying mining and milling artifacts, old payroll records, milling receipts, and old photographs. Each year, the “Mighty Argo” tours guests from all fifty states and many foreign countries. The Argo Mill is a favorite educational and entertaining outing for many public schools who bring students from all grade levels including, engineering students from the Colorado School of Mines.
The Argo Mill has been featured in many national publications and has been the set for several film productions. Because of the historic significance and impact that the Argo Tunnel and Mill played in local and state mining history, it was placed on the National Historic Register by the Department of the Interior in 1977.
Contact the Argo Mill for gold mill and mine tours and gold and gemstone panning. Open year round, weather permitting. Hours from May 1 to Oct. 1 are 9:30 – 5, first tour is at 10AM, last tour is at 4PM. During the winter, please call to confirm we are open, (303) 567-2421.
Address: 2350 Riverside Drive, Idaho Springs, CO 80452
Visit the website: argomilltour.com.
Edgar Experimental Mine
Students and staff at the mine conduct guided tours for the general public throughout the year. Tours generally last one hour, but can be tailored to accommodate some special requests. More than one-half mile of underground workings representing over 100 years of mine development are covered on the tour. Lighted displays showing drilling, blasting, and mucking equipment are displayed on the mine tour and items of discussion include mining practice, mining economics, and the role of the mining industry in modern society. The mine is usually relatively dry and a constant 54 degrees Fahrenheit, year-round. CSM provides hard hats for tour members, but guests are asked to wear warm clothing and sturdy walking shoes. Sorry, but the mine is not wheelchair accessible.
Contact the Edgar Mine to schedule a tour, as they are by appointment only.
(303) 567-2911 | Visit our Website
Address: 365 8th Street, Idaho Springs, CO 80452
Phoenix Gold mine
Located two miles west of Idaho Springs in the famous Trail Creek Mining District. Your host is Al Mosch, a gold miner in Clear Creek County for over 60 years.
Al, with the help of his family and many, many volunteers, reopened the Phoenix in 1980 exposing a very high grade vein, (which you will see on the tour). Along with the Phoenix vein, the Resurrection vein was also discovered. Al says “The Phoenix gold ore is left in place until gold prices go up enough to pay to remove the gold. The small miner has it as rough as ever when it comes to processing their ore. Unless you can afford to build your own mill and assay office, the closest one to Colorado is in Montana.”
Due to Al’s knowledge of history this tour is considered by many to be the best gold mine tour anywhere, anytime!
Contact The Phoenix Mine for gold mine tour and panning information
Open 10 am – 6 pm daily – Winter tours are weather permitting
(303) 567-0422 | Visit our Website
Located at: 800 Trail Creek Road, Idaho Springs, CO 80452
Lebanon Silver Mine
Enhance your train ride with an optional walking tour of the Lebanon Silver Mine, located at the halfway point on the railroad. The tour takes you 500 feet into a mine tunnel bored in the 1870s. Your guide will point out rich veins of silver and tell you about early-day mining. The Lebanon Mining Company finally strikes the Hise Lode 1,100 feet from the portal. Profitable veins are found and the company enjoys an excellent reputation as a solid producer.
In 1885, the Lebanon is one of only 50 mines in the Georgetown area still producing ore. The tunnel reached its greatest length of 1,200 feet in 1886, but drastic silver prices declined ending further work. By the end of the decade, the mine was silent.
Today you can enhance your Georgetown Train Ride with an optional walking tour of the Lebanon Silver Mine, located at the halfway point on the railroad. The tour takes you 500 feet into a mine tunnel bored in the 1870s. Your guide will point out rich veins of silver and tell you about early mining.
The temperature inside the mine is a constant 44 degrees Fahrenheit, so bring a jacket.
This is a walking tour lasting 1 hour and 15 minutes so comfortable walking shoes are recommended.The tour also includes visits to the manager’s office, the miners’ change room and the tool shed.
Contact The Georgetown Loop Railroad for silver mine tour information
(888) 456-6777 | Visit the Website
Located at: 646 Loop Drive, Georgetown ,CO 80444