- The mine is located next to a state park that boasts a variety of activities for recreationalists.
- To keep the public safe, the hazardous conditions of the mine needed to be addressed.
- BLM helped to close 48 mine openings and constructed over 10,000 feet of protective fencing.
- Addressing these safety hazards earned the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation and BLM a “Cooperative Conservation Award.”
Federal Agency LandownerBureau of Land Management
During the 1860s, the Bayhorse Mine was a bustling center of activity for those seeking riches in silver. Today, the mine is abandoned, resting on the outskirts of the Salmon-Challis National Forest in central Idaho, adjacent to the Bayhorse Unit of the Land of the Yankee Fork State Park and Historic Area (BULYF). Part of the Land of the Yankee Fork Historic Area, the park is a 20.9-acre site with historical interpretations and numerous recreational opportunities. Land of the Yankee Fork State Park is comprised of several units scattered through the whole of the Land of the Yankee Fork Historic Area, including the Bayhorse Unit. The units are surrounded by public land, which offer hundreds of miles of OHV/ATV trails, and fishing, camping, hunting, backpacking and hiking opportunities galore. While wandering around in these woods you will most likely come across old abandoned mining sites. These abandoned mines can be hard to see for off-highway vehicle recreations and can be an attractive, dangerous nuisance for hikers and other outdoor recreationists.
When the Idaho Department of Parks and Recreation (IDPR) announced plans to develop an ATV and mountain bike-friendly trail system at the BULYF, it recognized that several hazardous conditions at the abandoned Bayhorse Mine needed to be addressed before the project moved forward. In response, IDPR partnered with the BLM to close 48 mine openings and construct 11,000 feet of protective fence. The opening of the new trail was marked with a ribbon cutting ceremony where guests were treated to an extended ATV tour of ghost towns and old mines of the West. This collaborative effort earned a “Cooperative Conservation Award” for the IDPR from the BLM for their collaborative effort in addressing abandoned mine land safety hazards.
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BLM helped mitigate environmental and public safety risks on numerous abandoned mine sites in the La Sal region. To address the dangers of runoff and chemical deposits, BLM helped offset the cost of treatment plants to keep nearby waters safe. LEARN MORE