Heritage Silver Trail
Exploring the Cobalt Mining District National Historic Site of Canada, located in Cobalt and township of Coleman.
There is so much information when you follow the Heritage Silver Trail, we spent two days exploring the individual sites. The museum and mine tour were closed due to COVID restrictions, or we would have spent one more day.
The best place to start is on the website of the Cobalt Historical Society. The Trail Map and Trail Guide are readily available for download. Another great trail guide is available for download from the Ministry of Energy, Northern Development and Mines
The trail starts in the Town of Cobalt. You can follow the trail with your car or take the bike. We found plenty of parking at every site. This year is a really bad year for the tourist industry, but a great year for us as we try to avoid the crowds.
The trail signs are easy to follow and there is a description at every site. We recommend to read the Trail Guide, there is more detail in there and you can read in the shade. We had some really hot days without clouds.
When we visited the Site #4, the Vain 96 Adit, the cool air blowing out of the mine shaft was amazing. Even so there was not much to see or explore, we can honestly say that this is the 'coolest' site of them all.
The Heritage Silver Trail is not a museum and most of the sites and displays can be experienced up close. Even so you can actually climb up the ruins, please tread lightly to preserve this place for future generations.
There are two different type of mining techniques, surface and sub-surface. Most mines (ore mining) today are surface or open-pit mines.
This here is a cut that extends about 200 meters or maybe more.
Site #5, Cart Lake Tailings Lookout. Tailings are the rock piles around the mines. You can see the headframe across the lake. It was not really a lake when we visited. From the parking lot, a trail leads into the bush and suggests a path to the building. Sure enough, we could cross the field, aka formerly lake, and get an up close look of the building.
You can find products from Canadian Allis-Chalmers all over the place. They were a major producer for mining products back in the days. The company changed over the years, was dissolved and restarted.
Some of the machinery is big and crude. It did the job. Would be nice to see one of them in action.
Or better, get a ride in one of these Ore Carts. Remember Indiana Jones when they fled the mines in a cart? That'll get your Adrenalin pumping.
This ends our tour of the Heritage Silver Trail. It is not our intention to document the trail, you can read the trail guide for that. However we hope you got interested and plan to visit this amazing display of historic buildings, places and artifacts.
We will be back for the museum and the mine tour and keep on exploring the abandoned mines in the area.