Abandoned mine sites are generally not available for sale. These old mines are features that are the results of mining operations that occurred in the past – some are nearly 150 years old.
One does not simply go out and buy an abandoned mine unless you purchase a mining claim or a piece of private land that has abandoned mines sites on it. One example is a “patented” mining claim. A patented mining claim is property where the owner has both surface and mineral rights. The owner pays property taxes in the same way as a homeowner. Many patented mining claims in Nevada date back to the late 1800s and early 1900s and many of these claims have underground mine workings on them. The best way to locate patented mining claims for sale is through a real estate agent.
The other alternative is to stake and file unpatented mining claims. These are claims staked on public lands (BLM, Forest Service) for the intent and purpose of locating mineable mineral resources. A person staking such claims needs to determine if the land of interest is under held under prior claims. If there is no prior claimant, a claim of 600’ by 1500’ (20.66 acres) may be located on the ground and must be properly surveyed. Mining claim paperwork and a location map must be filed with the BLM and the county recorder in the county where the claim is situated. Fees must be paid to the BLM and county totaling approximately $200 per claim (check with the BLM for current filing fees) for the initial filing and must be renewed every year to keep the claim active.
The above is general information.
As always, we encourage people to avoid abandoned mines. They are dangerous under the best of conditions. Old timbers, cave-ins, old explosives, bad air, bats, rattlesnakes, spiders, rodents that may carry hantavirus, and falling are among the dangers. Our motto regarding abandoned Mines is: “STAY OUT AND STAY ALIVE”.