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Gaylor Lakes & Great Sierra Mine Hike: Part 2

Although prospecting efforts were made in the Tioga area as early as 1860, it was not until 1878 when claims were made and the Tioga Mining District was formed. The City of “Dana” received a Post Office in 1880. In 1881, the Great Sierra Consolidated Silver Company bought up all of the claims in the Tioga Hill area and started drilling tunnels but never produced pay dirt.

By 1882, more than 350 claims had been made in the Tioga Mining District and it is said that the May Lundy Mine in the Lundy area produced $3 million from its silver mining. By 1884, the boom was over and the Great Sierra Consolidated Mining Company ceased operations. The town of Dana City was no more. But you can still get some glimpses of what remains in this ghost town and mining area that once thrived.

Looking back toward Upper Gaylor Lake through the remains of an old structure.

Even though the remains of the fireplace and bench look like they may have been a cozy place to warm up, imagine the miners living up there in the winter in zero degree weather with the wind howling through those cracks in the rock walls of the structure.



Several mining shafts still exist and are completely open, so watch your step!


I don’t know what this structure was used for but it is largely intact and very short.


The inside view of the short rock building.


Old mining remnants are still in the area.



More abandoned mine shafts.




We had reached our turn around spot and headed back to the car. The clouds had continued to settle in around us and occasionally we felt the sting of light sleet. I snapped this picture of Upper Gaylor Lake on my way down. I was sure glad I took the pictures on the way up because we were completely socked in.


As we drove home, we pulled off along the side to admire some of the fall color in some Aspens and Ferns. It was the icing on the cake for the end of another excellent hiking adventure.




My references for the information on the Great Sierra Consolidated Mining Company and the Tioga Mining District came from the references below, just in case you wished to read more. . .

Ghost Mines of Yosemite”

Hubbard, D. H.1958, Awani Press, Fresno.

Russell, C. P., Early Mining Excitements East of Yosemite, 1928, SCB, 13(1):40-53

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