Outlaw Prospecting in Garibaldi Provincial Park and the search for Slumach's Lost Creek Mine.

By Daryl Friesen

One of the most beautiful treasures of British Columbia is Garibaldi Provincial Park. Garibaldi Park was created back in 1920. When the government declared a 195,000 hectares of the area surrounding Mt Garibaldi a park reserve.

In 1930 the government proposed that prospecting for Minerals should no longer be allowed in Provincial parks and they wanted to make Garibaldi provincial park there first gold reserve. They picked the area North of Alouette Lake and Pitt Lake as one of there first targets. The Yukon Chamber of Mines tried to fight the government on there new law against prospecting in Provincial parks and where successful. You could still search in the park you just could not stake a claim. The area they where talking about is now called Golden Ears Park but back then was still called Garibaldi Park. The Southern Half of Garibaldi would not be renamed Golden Ears until 1960.

Why would the government be so determined to have this area protected as a gold reserve? Unless they new that gold deposits where to found in the area in question. However, there own geology reports that where done of the area paint a much different story, in regards to gold in the area. The reports even mention the lost mine of Pitt lake and the report is not in favour of the legend.

Since the early 1940s the legend of the lost mine has appeared in the press with ever increasing frequency and becomes more fanciful with each publication. However the area about Pitt Lake is not favourable for gold-quartz veins and even less for the placer gold of the legend.

Those are the reports that where made availble to the public. Here is what an ex geologist who used to work for the Geological survey of Canada has to say about the lost mine.

The gold is well documented but the location never was. While regional mapping, Geological Survey of Canada geologists located a rather spectacular but small gold deposit in the upper Pitt river drainage. The showing is within the park boundary so the location remains unknowm and will not appear on any government maps or databases.

The Geological reports of Pitt Lake and the Surrounding area were not published until 1965. The same year that prospecting of any kind was finally banned in all provincial parks. On one hand we have the government pushing to make the area about Pitt Lake and Alouette lake a gold reserve and on the other hand in Geology reports done of the area they are saying the same area is not gold bearing. Could the conflicting actions by the Government be evidence of something bigger going on as some suspect?

Many who have been deeply involved with the search for the lost mine believe the government new the mine was there all along. They are said to have learned the truth behind the lost mine around the time of Volcanic Browns search for the lost mine and when he went missing. It is also said to be the main reason they wanted to outlaw prospecting in Garibaldi and one of the reasons the park was created in the first place. To protect not only the location of the gold canyon but other deposits of significant worth that are still waiting to be found within the park.

It was not just about preserving the natural beauty of the area for future generations but they have been very successful in doing this. If there was no Garibaldi or Golden Ears Park the lost mine would have been discovered and mined years ago and this beautiful area lost forever.

Regardless of any law gold fever still continued and the search for the lost mine of Pitt Lake went on. Those prospectors who have gone into the area in search of the mine since 1965 have all decided to step outside the law. The Rock hammer and the gold pan had now become the tools of the outlaw. In todays world the prospector who goes into the park can expect to have the weight of the law brought down on his head if his activities are ever discovered.

Prospecting in Garibaldi Park.

There was a prospector (Stuart Brown) who came forward with extraordinary claims that he had in fact found the lost mine of Pitt Lake within the borders of Garibaldi park in the summer of 1973 .When the prospector made his discovery he knew that there was no way he could ever stake the location. So he did what most would not do and went the honest route and tried to get the government to grand him permission to stake the site and to protect the area. As if word got out to the public that such a place as the lost mine did in fact exist there would be a modern day gold rush inside the park. Protecting the area would be a top priority.

Stuart Brown wrote letter after letter to the government trying to get them to open the park up for staking but they would not let him as it was now against the law no matter how much gold was at stake. He arranged a meeting with one Leo Nemsic and tossed a gold nugget on his desk as proof, but still the government would not help.

After getting nowhere with the government for several years Stuart Brown then decided to take his discovery somewhere else and contacted a mining company known at the time as the Teck Corporation. They offered him 16,000 dollars for his location knowing it was inside a Provincial park. He declined their offer, as it was not enough to sell out the location. The Prospector was now faced with keeping to himself a secret that many people would kill for and was not sure what to do next. He tried to organize other trips into the gold canyon but none where successful.

What the Teck corporation did with there knowledge of gold in Garibaldi is unknown. I don't think gold deposits in the park would have surprised them as they must have know about the deposits right on the parks boundaries which where being explored by Cominco.

Cominco had sent prospectors into the Sloquet Creek area where they located a lode deposit right on the parks border back in 1944. Cominco has since sold the property to a company called Aranlee Resources who think its now possible to turn the find into a mine.

Did the Teck Corporation after failing to make a deal with Stuart Brown go forward on there own with exploration in the park? Stuart Brown once said that he thinks he may have told the Teck Corporation a little to much regarding the location and was becoming very paranoid that someone may have reached the site and that it may have been mined out. But it may have not been only the Teck Corporation who was now searching inside the park.

Brown also mentions a party of Americans who he saw near the location in one of his letters. This is not the first time a party of unknown Americans have been mentioned. As a female prospector named--------- who made an very interesting discovery back in the late summer of 1995 Up near the western edges of Stave glacier in Garibaldi park while searching for the lost mine.She claimed she found the location of the mine but that it had been cleaned out by a large mining company who she also believed where Americans. She thinks they flew in mined it out.

Here Stuart Brown speak

There have been other far stranger claims that have been made into who the mysterious party of Americans may be. Some think they are members of a secret society that is connected to the Masons who are guarding the location of Jacksons gold but all this is of course only theory. Some cabin owners on Pitt Lake have even said they saw two American Apache helicopters flying into Corbold Creek Canyon.Keep in mind this theory may be a long shot but there are s few out there who believe there is a connection to the Masons and the lost mine so we have to keep an open mind.

There is also a report of two men who where searched at the United States Border near Aldergrove who's car trunk was carrying two bags loaded with raw gold nuggets. Where these men bringing gold into the United States that they had looted from the lost mine?

There are also stories of guard towers built near Remote Peak which are used by agents of the government to protect the gold canyon. The towers where built by the government during world war II to watch for attacks by the Japanese and have since been taken up to watch for prospectors going into the area during the right time of year when the gold reveals itself.

There was also a reported piece of float found this summer in one of creeks which flows into Alouette lake which contained a good showing of gold.

Spindle Explorations or Daryl Friesen are not responsible for anyone entering Provincial Parks for the purpose of gold prospecting.This article is for informational purposes only...

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