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Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 61.djvu/244

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POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

water was here derived from a reservoir in the creek, and was raised by a 140 horse-power engine to a height of 260 feet, the level of the hillside workings, and then to an additional height of 40 feet to an elevated tank, which gives a total fall of about 60 feet available for hydraulicking. The water was conducted through a 10-inch pipe and 6-inch hose terminating in a 212-inch nozzle. About 1,200 Canadian gallons a minute could be delivered. This enabled one man to wash out no less than 8 cubic yards per hour, and the gravel was washed straight into the sluice-boxes without the necessity for intermediate labor.

If ever water becomes more abundant and accessible in the district, there can be no doubt that hydraulicking will be largely employed.

On Bonanza Creek I witnessed another novelty in the first operations of a new dredging plant which had just been introduced, having been formerly employed on an auriferous sand bar upon the Lewes River. It is very possible that dredging will prove to be an efficient and economical way of working over some of the old claims in the creeks which have only been treated by the cruder methods of the earlier miners.

There are other introductions which were new at the time of my visit; although no crushing of quartz had then been effected, a small Tremaine mill had just been erected on the banks of the Klondike in the immediate neighborhood of Dawson, and it is to be hoped that we shall soon hear of promising results among the quartz discoveries. An auriferous conglomerate found in considerable deposits on the Indian River was attracting much attention, chiefly on account of its superficial resemblance to the South African banket.

In default of resources other than gold, the prosperity of Klondike in the immediate future appears to me to depend mainly upon the extent to which in the creeks water can be more economically and bountifully supplied, labor and the necessaries of life more cheaply obtained, and communication be made more easy, so that it may be possible to work low-grade gravel at a profit. There is much auriferous material which it does not at present pay to touch. The Government is giving every encouragement, and in Mr. Ross the Territory has a strong governor; roads have been constructed; the royalty has been reduced to 5 per cent., and on all claims $5,000 of gold are exempt. The necessary charges are only $10 for a miner's license, $15 for recording a claim, $50 for surveying, $15 for renewal, and an owner is only required to put $500 worth of work on to his claim each year.

But the cost of water, wood, labor and materials is almost prohibitive; the standard of living is high, although there is, I think, a