I saw two videos on YouTube about the mines on Short Mountain in Dauphin County. Old coal holes and none of the equipment is there anymore, so I suspect they were abandoned at least fifty years ago. Yep, you can see the old road on the north side, the Gratz side, with snow in winter. The trees on the old road seem to be at least 30-50 years old. Anyone know if there is any mining on the south side of Short Mountain anymore? The western tail end was semi-anthracite. I think that whole area on the north side is now State Game Lands, so future mining would be prohibited.
If you are close, you really need to go past David A. Lucas' coal museum in Hegins. David A. is featured in "Hard Coal: Last of the Bootleg Miners" and I have always toyed with the idea of stopping (with a case of Yuengling Premium) to pick his brains about some of the more technical aspects of coal mining. I know the coal seams run east-west and they drove the slopes in north and south. Why no drift mines? Are all of the current mines ones that were put in many years ago or are people putting in new slopes from above ground? How thick are some of the seams. As I recall, the Mammoth was over thirty feet deep, but some are only a foot or so deep? Where did they get the rails, as they are smaller than railroad rails. How did they get the coal back to the gangway. I guess that is what it is called where the slope ends.
Are the strippings on the back road, past Superior, going into Good Spring still active. Any slopes back off that road? Can't remember where the guy who delivered my coal said the Benders have mines, but I think it was well East of their breaker, maybe on the east side of Rt. I81. Are the culm banks in Shamokin still there or were they scooped up and sent to the Co-Gen plant? Many years ago, we found an abandoned German electric shovel off Rt. 125. The bucket would have held over two pickup trucks. Someone said it is now operational somewhere south of Gowan City. Yea, that mountain road is a real trip and I'm glad I didn't drive it with the Farmall M tractor I got at auction at least thirty years ago.