Mascot Mine / Mascot pond in Gorham, NH
During a day hike in Gorham, NH i stumbled upon a strange, out of place, enormus 200ft high pile of rocks on the side of a rock face alongside a peaceful small pond in the middle of nowhere. At first i passed it off as quite a strange natural occurance but a couple minutes later after hanging around and exploring the area next to the lake i noticed a faint path of footsteps going up the rockpile so i climbed the pile of rocks, following the path and came accross a mine entrance which was unfortunately gated off and had an information board inside stating that this was the mascot mine and is now a major hibernation spot for bats. I then tried to walk around to the right, assuming that at the very top may be another entrance, but at the very top of the pile stood a 25 foot rock wall that clearly showed signs that at one point tailings were dumped over the top. some metal posts can be seen sticking out the rocks near the top. I attempted to climb the rock face (without any rock climbing gear) but with my fear of heights and lack of experience i found myself 4 feet from the top and nowhere to get footing to continue on and was froze for several minutes trying to figure out how i would get off this cliff. eventually i made it down and ended my exploration for the day.
When i returned to my camp i started researching the mascot mine out of curiosity and was able to find a fair amount of information. Mascot mine was in operation in the late 1800's but only for a period of about 10 years, during that time they mined lead and silver and transported it via railroad to new jersey. I also came accross an old photograph of the mine while it was in operation which shows a few buildings as well as a small building on the ledge at the main mine entrance (pictured at bottom). now, the only evidence that a mine ever existed is the enormous pile of tailings and an old access trail that takes you to hogan rd. all the buildings are forever gone.
The mine can be accessed by the appalachian trail off of hogan rd. I came accross the mine by parking at the old railroad bridge in gorham and taking the trail marked AMC which takes you up onto the railroad bed (use caution as this trail is now shared by ATV's year round as well as snowmobiles during the winter). immediately after crossing the power canal there is a small trail to the right, take that trail and then take a right onto the dirt road. follow this "road" for some time and it will take you alongside the water until you reach a rock staircase opposite the water. this trail is the appalachian trail which you follow for about half a mile or so until you reach a fork which will say mascot pond to the right. take that trail and after about a quarter mile your there.
This is one of the smaller rock piles you stumble upon when first coming up to the pond.
Heres the small beach area alongside the pond
view of the tailings pile
Halfway up. Use caution when climbing the pile as looks are rock.
at the level of the main entrance.
at the very top of the rock pile. Great views all around
In all the excitment i forgot to take a picture of the entrance. i found this at http://www.vftt.org/forums/showthrea...nd-18-Jun-2009)
Here is a photo of the mine when it was in operation. found this photo in the guy shorey collection.
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