Garfield-Butler Mine Walk

Garfield Trail

The trail to the Garfield Mine Group starts at the Hillsboro Transfer Station and follows old mining roads for most of its 2.9 mile distance.  The net elevation gain is 542‘ (from 5,115 to 5,657).  Gross elevation gain is in the range of 700‘ and the maximum grade is 14%.  The trail follows the alternate route to the Big-Low Mine for most of its distance.  At 1.7 miles from the transfer station, at an elevation of 5,545’, there are cement foundations of an old mill site (photograph below).  

At 2 miles from the start, at an elevation of 5,587’, the trail turns southwest down a gulch, still on an old mining road in good condition although it becomes more rocky.  At this point it is possible to continue to the Big-Low Mine shafts, which are only 200 yards up the hill, the headframe of the Big-Low is clearly visible at this point.

The trail to the Garfield Mine Group continues southwest for a quarter of a mile and then turns north and up-hill.  Until this point a high-clearance vehicle would not have great difficulty traveling along the road (trail).  As the trail climbs the slope, however, the road degrades significantly although it (as of June 2015) is still passible by ATV.

At about two and three-quarters miles from the start the road terminates and the mines are accessed by game trails.

Foundation of a mill site about 1/4 mile from the Big-Low Shaft Hillsboro Mining District

© Robert Barnes 2018