The Mission Cross is a small-scale gold and scheelite property located in the outskirts of the Jarbidge Mining District. Historically the site produced gold and silver, which is noted by USGS records. Following the War Act in 1940, the mine was designated as a tungsten mine, which allowed for continued operation due to the status of tungsten as a strategic mineral.
As noted in historical reports and references, the mine never shipped any tungsten. It did ship a few shipments of ore containing high amounts of molybdenum.
The mine is spread across the top of a short knoll and workings continue down the eastern slope of the knoll. A series of open adits and cuts make up the workings. There are two adits that are largely collapsed and inaccessible at current. There was an apparent shaft just above the main adit, this shaft appears to have had a tram of some sort that ran down to the crusher and tipple.
The adit nearest the top of the knoll has naturally collapsed. There are still visible drift workings, but loose and broken rock made the portal unsafe to attempt to navigate. It is advised that this be cleared and shored prior to any entry into the workings.
There is shipping ore at the site of the old shaft and staged around the old tipple. A small (10,000 tons) dump of tailings is located below the tipple/crusher. Samples were taken from the tails, the dumps and the shipping ores.
The dumps, overall measure 260’ x 135’ with an average depth of 20’. The material is iron with some garnets and a dark country rock.
The shipping ore is a light grey rhyolite type with scheelite and pyrites visible. Veins of material are dark and show heavy pyrites and a blue tinge. There is an estimated 4000 tons of shipping ore at the shaft and above the mill.
Located in very high country for Nevada, the terrain consists of dense pine and aspen growth with very steep hillsides. This is beneficial for processing and shipping plants that utilize gravity. There is a series of small ponds just below the claims that could be utilized for processing needs. They are sourced by winter snowfall and seasonally ebb.
Overall, the property has not been developed to any extent. Due to the existence of a crush, tipple, and roads, it can be inferred that this property has assets to justify this expense and effort. It has been defined that no tungsten has been shipped from the site. Gold, molybdenum, and silver have been reported as being produced in the district. It is far more likely that the property produced small amounts of other minerals that were not reported but justified construction of a mill. This reasoning would also account for the presence of a watchman on the site as is noted by Tingley in 1980.
The value of the property is in the molybdenum and tungsten. Tungsten is the strongest material known to man, next to diamonds. It is found in scheelite and wolfram. China supplies 85% (68,000 tons) of the world’s tungsten at current. Russia is a distant second at 3,600 tons per year. Tungsten is considered a strategic metal and while it cannot be traded or sold as a commodity, shares of a company that produces tungsten can be sold. Tungsten is worth $30,300 per ton as of 2018 according to Metalary.com