As part of a program to assess the environmental problems that would attend the mining of oil shale, the Bureau of Mines blind-bored a 10- ft-diam shaft to a depth of 2,371 feet in the Piceance Creek Basin and installed an 8-ft-diam steel casing to a depth of 2,352 feet. This pioneer shaft penetrates two aquifers, the rich mahogany oil shale zone, and virtually the full thickness of oil shale and accessory minerals in the Parachute Creek member of the Green River Formation. A surface plant consisting of a headframe, hoist, and support facilities was erected, and the shaft was equipped with hoisting, ventilating, pumping, and service systems. Cutouts or windows were made in the shaft lining, and stations were opened on the 1,844- and 2,079-foot levels. A 10- by 10-foot entry was driven on the 2,079-foot level, and bulk samples of oil shale, dawsonite, and nahcolite were mined for processing tests. Problems with methane gas and ground water were encountered, and grouting was required.
1980 Mining Yearbook, Colorado Min. Assoc., Denver, June 1980, PP. 164-170