Treadwell in the rain is a peaceful place. Thanks to the hardwood forest already established among the mining ruins, storm winds can’t reach Aki and I. She tends to spook on days like this and I wonder, again whether dogs can see ghosts. There should be plenty of them here where just over 100 years ago tunnels running under Gastineau Channel collapsed and flooded out the mine. Before that, it would have been a place for me to avoid—crowded and dominated by the pounding noise of machines crushing the gold out of ore.


I would have mourned the clear cutting of the original old growth forest and felt sorry for the Chinese immigrants who struggled to dig the ten mile long ditch needed to deliver mountain water to the mining town. I would also have admired the iron workers who cast the large gears needed to process ore. Today, the gears lay sprawled at the base of spruce and cottonwoods, mining cars waits for the forest to close in, and the only noise is made by a bossy Stellar Jay.



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