Some of you are familiar with the Nunez map and some are not... This map or copy of first came into my possession September 2nd 2001, the map created quite a stir at the time, the origins of this map is only known by a few and I cannot elaborate. When I first received the map two of the first things that caught my eye is the two presumed cache location on the map, those familiar with it know that I am referring to the double box with dots (Split Cache) and the box with the cross in the center with four intentional dots at each corner, likely being a delayed tithing shipment.
Why is there intentional dots placed at the four corners?
Compare to the double box located on the same map...
The first mentioned cache above was thought to be in a particular area where in most familiar with the map would ascertain... even I presumed this to be the place until my good friend Wild Bill sent me a photo of a tree he had found which would later prove to be an authentic carving upon an aspen, the aspen in question proved by core sample to be approximately 290 years of age, this being in 2010 and IF carved at the time of the Nunez expedition, the tree would would have been 51 years of age, a perfect tree age for carving... later we would locate nearby another 4 trees of an equivalent age, bearing the carving of a double box, Turtle, Heart and one legua symbol. Since this time we have been in the process of resolving the site, but the one important thing it taught us was... Perspective, any one familiar with the Nunez map knows that it is drawn erroneously out of perspective beyond what many are... the author of it in my estimation was not a cartographer, but no matter as he was able to capture details of landmarks making it in some ways better than those done by a cartographer.
The latter presumed cache location mentioned above for whatever reason I had not attempted to discover until recently when I was asked to review the map again for future expeditions. In reviewing my assumptions of 2005 or 06 when google earth first came about, I recognized certain things I had not in previous years. I made the corrections and as some of you know, made a trip yesterday to verify and discover of my new perspective was correct. This part of the story I will keep short but we did find what we think is the location indicated on the map, but we are no wiser as to what it means?
According to the observations made yesterday, it would appear there are two mine dumps a larger one and a smaller one above it.
Each has newer working on top of it due to what appears to be the results of someone trying to located the covered entrances at about the turn of the century to about 70 years ago, we are still trying to sort this out with the evidences of barbed wire, nails and wire wrapped around a tree that would not seem to be very old.
In all of this, I wandered the site trying to find any evidence of antiquity although my eyes could plainly see the antiquity of the old tailings... finally I notice a scar on a large pine of unknown age located between the dumps, this type of scar I would normally ignore but looking closely I found the same axe mark pattern which can be found and the REAL Mine of the Utes location not two miles as a crow flies to the North. the overgrowth of 4 plus inches being the growth of the tree since it was carved or cut is equivalent to those found at another place believed to have been cut by those of the Nunez Expedition of 1771.
Based on the evidences viewed at the site, it would seem someone in the past found these two mine dumps, but apparently the mines had been back filled, this would be the reason that starting from the top of the two dumps, it would seem the finders began digging trenches away from the dumps which appears to be an attempt to find the hidden tunnels, at the end of one trench a hole heads on a downward angle about 25 feet but obviously it is not the mine. The other ends at a below the surface ledge. However it seems that over the years water has open a hole under the ledge, a hole I do not think the trenches knew of...
This photo unfortunately was blurred...
You can see the hole that has washed out below the ledge... if only those who trenched this in the early 1900's knew how close they were... or did they find it and it has been fill with sluff off? it appears the large dump was the waste tailings and the smaller one was the ore pile with evidence of mineral.
The return trip to the site will be soon, but this time I will have in hand, my increment borer that has been missing ever since I last moved, I think I know where it is... ;-)