Glacier Peak Mining Claims
Though visiting Glacier Peak mining claims should be enjoyable and educational, there are inherent dangers associated with active mining operations. Please read the following and agree to abide by these procedures and rules.
Hazards and dangers are both manmade and natural and can result in injury, loss of limb, or even death.
Some of the natural hazards and dangers, but not limited to these, include severe weather, including snow, rain, hail, and lightning. Lightening is especially dangerous at the relatively high elevations where the claims are located. Wind, even moderate, can knock off tree limbs and topple trees, especially since many of the claims are located in burned-over areas. A falling tree no more than 4 inches in diameter can kill you and can fall with no warning. The recent fire also created potholes where roots have burned out, leaving holes covered by only an inch or two of soil. You can easily step into one of these and twist an ankle or worse. Rocks on upper slopes can also loosen and slide or roll without warning. Be cautious whenever walking across slope. It’s plenty easy to turn an ankle on loose rocks or logs. Additionally, you may be exposed to intense sun and heat. Biting flies may also be present. Mosquitoes, especially, love the topaz claims. Bring proper protective clothing and gear for the season. Good boots and a hat are essential. Do not take nature for granted.
Manmade dangers mostly include moving equipment and excavation highwalls. Access where equipment is operating is restricted. You will be escorted in any situation where you might be around equipment. Otherwise, you are prohibited from being within 50 feet of any operating equipment. This includes pneumatic tools, backhoe, trackhoe, compressor, pressurized lines, etc. A safe zone will be designated around all equipment. You will be asked to leave if you violate this safe zone.
You are not allowed in any excavation which is over the height of your head without specific clearance and proper safety equipment. Minimum equipment is a hardhat, gloves, and steel-toe boots. Do not place yourself within 8 feet of any wall higher than your body height without specific permission. Rocks can and will fall without warning. Wind can loosen small rocks above you and blow dust and sand into your eyes. Unstable banks can collapse. The 8 foot rule will not protect you from every danger, but it might give you sufficient time to react.
If you are allowed to collect a pocket found within a high wall or dig for topaz in an excavation, we will bring in equipment to make the wall safe before allowing you access. Afterwards Glacier Peak personnel will supervise your actions. Generally, you will be allowed to assist Glacier Peak personnel in helping remove and wrap specimens. If possible, you may be allowed to remove a specimen. Although many of you have experience in collecting pegmatite pockets, Glacier Peak personnel will assume otherwise and will give redundant instructions. We cannot afford to lose a great specimen because of an assumption.
In general, while digging, always be aware of others around you. Never toss a rock behind you without first checking for people. Never shovel dirt without looking. Assume someone will be there, because when you don’t, that’s where they’ll be. Likewise, never allow a rock to roll down a hill. Be cautious with tools. Make certain persons are at a safe distance whenever using any tool–crack hammer, gadbar, shovel, etc. Use the proper tools. Don’t pry with a shovel, use a prybar, etc. and use proper lifting techniques to protect your back. Do not place tools where they might cause a tripping hazard. Account for all your tools at all times. Especially be certain to return any tools that have been loaned to you. Additionally, ensure you wear proper protective gear–safety glasses, gloves, hardhat, etc.
Similarly, maintain a safe distance from all persons using tools, to include shovels and picks and never enter their operating space. If it becomes necessary to do so, notify the person and make certain they acknowledge your presence before moving into their operating space.
Especially, especially, be watchful of any children on site. Although we get excited while digging, they especially get excited.
When we get caught up in collecting a pocket or pulling out a nice crystal, the excitement can overcome our good judgment as well. Like driving, even if our judgment is sound, the other guy’s might not be.
Upon your actual visit to Glacier Peak mining claims you will be asked if you understand these dangers and be required to turn in a signed liability waiver release. Please print off a copy of the release and sign it prior to coming on site. Persons under 18 must have a parent or guardian peasent and sign their waivers.