Camp Bird Mine

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Site Description 4/1/2020 01 Background
The Camp Bird Mine is located 6 miles south of Ouray in Ouray County, Colorado. The Site contains three large tailings piles that are being actively eroded by three different streams (Sneffels and Imogene Creeks enter the Site and combine in the middle of the tailings to form Canyon Creek). All three tailings piles are also susceptible to flood events, increased runoff and failure of the existing slopes. The two tailings piles on the south side of Canyon Creek are associated with historic milling activities that date back to the early 1900s. A third modern tailings pile is located on the north side of Canyon Creek and was last used for disposal in the late 1990s. The modern pile is regulated through an active mining permit issued by the Colorado Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety (DRMS). 

Initial Response 4/1/2020 01 Background
In August 2017, Caldera Mineral Resources purchased the property out of bankruptcy and signed an Administrative Order on Consent with EPA and the State of Colorado to control erosion on-site and prevent the downstream migration of contaminated soil. This work will be accomplished in two phases.  Phase 1 will address the two historic tailings piles and all efforts in the creeks as a Time-Critical Removal Action under the direction of a USEPA On-Scene Coordinator. Phase 2 will address stabilization of the modern tailing pile through modification of the existing State of Colorado mining permit.

Response Objectives 4/1/2020 02 June 5, 2020

1. Stabilize the downstream historic tailings pile.

2. Stabilize the upstream historic tailings pile.

3. Stabilize the stream channels.



Response Operations 6/4/2020 02 June 5, 2020

1. Stabilize the downstream historic tailings pile.

COMPLETE

1a. Construct a drainage channel along the uphill perimeter of the pile to divert runoff around the tailings.

1b. Excavate the edges of the pile and place this material into the center of the pile.

1c. Re-grade the slopes of the pile.

1d. Cover the surface of the pile with topsoil.

1e. Install erosion control features across the surface of the pile.

INITIATED

1f. Establish vegetation on the surface of the pile.

 2. Stabilize the upstream historic tailings pile.

COMPLETE

2a. Re-grade the tailings pile and construct erosion control features.

2b. Cover the surface of the pile with topsoil.

INITIATED

2c. Establish vegetation on the surface of the pile.

 3. Stabilize the stream channels.

COMPLETE

3a. Widen and reconstruct Imogene Creek from the pipe bridge downstream to the river crossing.

3b. Remove rock obstructions from Canyon Creek and thin trees on the south bank.

3c. Widen and reconstruct Imogene Creek from the river crossing to the confluence.

3d. Widen and reconstruct the confluence of Imogene and Sneffels creeks.

3e. Widen and reconstruct Sneffels Creek from the CR361 bridge to the confluence.

3f. Widen and reconstruct Canyon Creek from the confluence to a point downstream of the historic tailings.

3g. Armor stream banks and construct erosion control features.

INITIATED

3h. Establish vegetation in the constructed floodplain.



Planned Activities 6/4/2020 02 June 5, 2020

- Verify establishment of vegetation on the surface of the historic tailings piles and in the constructed floodplains (July, 2020).

- Develop Post-Removal Site Control Plan (August, 2020).

- Issue Final Report (September, 2020).