Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Aug 27, 2009 3:40 pm

Dale,

thanx for the replies. Actually for #1 I was referring to claims in general with respect to FCRPA. i.e. FCRPA may not supercede mining claims existing when the law was passed but might (likely) or maybe not supercede claims made since.

More questions...though more rhetorical in nature
Unless the BLM has a rabbit up their hat they seem to be in a pickle. If the old claim was not valid then why let private individuals control a public resource for personal profit for decades? Why not officially declare it invalid and assume control? If the old claim was invalid why issue a new one? If you allowed the holder of the previous claim to operate the cave how can you discriminate against the new holder from doing the same? If you declare the new claim invalid do you owe compensation to the new holder since the BLM own policies with respect to that area implied a valid claim for decades. etc. I'm sure the courts will answer them for you dale :)
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Aug 27, 2009 6:13 pm

wyandottecaver wrote:Dale,

thanx for the replies. Actually for #1 I was referring to claims in general with respect to FCRPA. i.e. FCRPA may not supercede mining claims existing when the law was passed but might (likely) or maybe not supercede claims made since.

We had a case in Utah where a cave was declared significant in 1993 that existed in a mineral claim filed before the law was passed in 1988. About 5 years ago, the claimant filed an intention to open pit the claim, which would have totally destroyed the cave. We were told there was nothing that we could do because of the following clause in the act:
"(d) Existing rights
Nothing in this chapter shall be deemed to affect the full operation of the mining and mineral leasing laws of the United States, or otherwise affect valid existing rights."
So, the FRCPA did not supercede existing mining rights. The open pit didn't happen. The claimant spent many, many thousands of dollars to drill out his prospect and found nothing. Even without the act, you cannot gain possession of a cave by filing a mineral claim on it unless you can demonstrate the cave contains enough precious metal ore that a reasonable person can mine for a profit. But, if a claim is filed on property that contains a cave and also has demonstrable valuable mineral deposits, the claim can be valid, but it does not include the cave, even with out the Act. You may have a case to go to court to stop mining to protect the cave. How the Act would also help would be up to the courts, I guess. There have been hundreds and hundreds of cases by environmentalists to prevent mining because of endangered species, etc., and they have won many cases. One would hope a cave could be saved by the Act and the fact that the entire mountain is an Area of Critical Environmental Concern.

wyandottecaver wrote:More questions...though more rhetorical in nature
Unless the BLM has a rabbit up their hat they seem to be in a pickle. If the old claim was not valid then why let private individuals control a public resource for personal profit for decades? Why not officially declare it invalid and assume control? If the old claim was invalid why issue a new one? If you allowed the holder of the previous claim to operate the cave how can you discriminate against the new holder from doing the same?

This situation has been described several times, but it is just hitting me that others don't have any idea of the physical situation concerning Crystal Ball Cave. When I drive to the cave, gas is usually obtained in Delta, Utah, a town of about 3,200 souls. Another 8 miles is Hinkley, population 755. From there to the Utah/Nevada border is 80 miles of NOTHING. There are no lights until Snake Valley is entered, about 15 miles from the border. I have driven this road dozens of time without seeing another car, coming or going. A half mile from the border is a gravel road leading north to the cave. For the next 30 miles there are 3 houses, but only 1 may be occupied. At the 30 mile mark a road leads east for a mile to a house labeled Gandy on the map. A mile to the right is another house, where the Bates family lives, the cave's protectors. Another 2.5 miles leads to the cave. Most of this is barren except for the usual sagebrush community of plants and trees around the houses. From the above description, it is hoped the readers can get the true impression of desolation and isolation of the cave.

From the BLM office in Fillmore it is 40 miles to Delta. Add this together gives the BLM a 155 mile drive to the cave, one way. The BLM had seriously considered controlling the cave, but lacked the finances and motivation, since their plan, illegal as it was, worked just fine. For decades. They let private individuals control it and knowingly make an illegal profit because it was the easy way. It is that simple. So, let's sue the BLM. (Everyone connected with this is long retired.) The office issuing the claim doesn't check the area or previous claims, only what is on the filing form and let's the chips fall where they may. Why did the BLM not invalidate the new claims when they allowed the old one to stand? Because the office is entirely staffed with new personnel who go by the book, not a handshake.
If you declare the new claim invalid do you owe compensation to the new holder since the BLM own policies with respect to that area implied a valid claim for decades. etc. I'm sure the courts will answer them for you dale :)

No, no, you are misreading what I have previously said. The BLM NEVER, NEVER, implied a valid claim for decades. The BLM admitted orally to everyone that asked that the claims were invalid. They just looked the other way and hoped for the best. Now they're in a mess. And don't get me started on details of what happened in between some of this. "Stuff" happens.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Mar 5, 2010 1:12 am

FYI - The mining claims on Crystal Ball Cave and surrounding environs have been declared invalid. No minerals worthy of mining were found. Case closed! :banana: :banana:
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Herman Miller » Mar 5, 2010 8:04 am

Excellent news sir, glad no one wasted there money on the claim.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby l lambert » Mar 5, 2010 11:38 am

"There are huge gold and silver values in viens in the mine/cave as backed by assays." :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

"Instead of arguing about this, why don't you guys just make him an offer, cut a deal to buy him out, and then run a fundraising campaign in the caving community to recoup the cost? I know it's a matter of principle and all that, but you cannot count on the government to do the right thing and fix this, and it will cost a lot more than $10K to take this to court (plus you still might not win)." :down:

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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Evan G » Mar 5, 2010 11:45 am

"Instead of arguing about this, why don't you guys just make him an offer, cut a deal to buy him out, and then run a fundraising campaign in the caving community to recoup the cost?"

Because it is a claim (most likely a 100 year) not patented land so it is basically worthless because it is public land not private.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby l lambert » Mar 5, 2010 11:55 am

Congrats Evan, you might actually be "a good old rebel". :kewl: The two statements were mined from earlier in this thread. The first is pure bull and the second is a bad idea! Leo
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Evan G » Mar 5, 2010 12:17 pm

l lambert wrote:Congrats Evan, you might actually be "a good old rebel". :kewl: The two statements were mined from earlier in this thread. The first is pure bull and the second is a bad idea! Leo


LOL! I wish you could still patent old claims there is several claims by Horsethief-Bighorn Cave System that would be fun to own. The guy that holds the claims offered to sell the claims for an outrageous price, I just shook my head. Without the patent process and previous uranium mining it has become a scary liability. :yikes:

Interesting side note is the reason why some of the western ranches became so big aka. 100,000. acre + was the ranch owners would buy up defunked mineral & oil claims in a parcel and turn around and patent the land. Talk about a cheap way to get acreage!
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Sep 3, 2010 7:14 pm

Well, he's went and done it again. The mining claims over Crystal Ball Cave, Utah, have been relisted by the original poster despite the claims being declared invalid and the area designated and Area of Critical Environmental Concern! See:
http://cgi.ebay.com/Crystal-Ball-1-2-Mi ... 2eaf9917ac
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Oct 30, 2010 4:52 pm

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Last edited by Caverdale on Nov 2, 2010 12:20 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Nov 1, 2010 4:49 pm

wow,

the BLM actually reverted management to the Bates? Whos ONLY legal interest in this piece of PUBLIC property was their own previously lapsed (and supposedly now proved invalid) claim. So they deny Shumans claim (rightfully) based on it being invalid, but hand over management of the ACEC to PRIVATE party who previously commercialized the site by accepting fees and did this only because they were a previous holder of THE SAME invalid claim?

Good to know there isn't just 1 crooked side in this debacle. No doubt the local BLM manager and shuman were twins seperated at birth.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby Caverdale » Nov 1, 2010 5:27 pm

wyandottecaver wrote:wow,

the BLM actually reverted management to the Bates? Whos ONLY legal interest in this piece of PUBLIC property was their own previously lapsed (and supposedly now proved invalid) claim. So they deny Shumans claim (rightfully) based on it being invalid, but hand over management of the ACEC to PRIVATE party who previously commercialized the site by accepting fees and did this only because they were a previous holder of THE SAME invalid claim?

Good to know there isn't just 1 crooked side in this debacle. No doubt the local BLM manager and shuman were twins seperated at birth.

Sir, all I can say is that you are so far off base here with your comments that they do not deserve the time it would take for a reply explaining why. I'm sure that everyone that knows the true situation here will accept an apology and a retraction.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby wyandottecaver » Nov 1, 2010 5:37 pm

Then educate me rather than saying I must be crazy to find something wrong.

Other than the bates "being there first". How does the BLM legally justify placing one private group in charge of public property over another? There are apparently no valid or legal mining claims to support such control by any party. I am therefore wondering how ANY private entity can be placed in a position of authority or management over this piece of public property? Obviously they no longer have a mining claim. Do they hold a grazing lease?

Having the Bates resume their personal fiefdom over the area may well be a good outcome for the cave. I'm not so sure its a good outcome for setting precedents of private control over public domain, let alone a good example of policy.
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Re: Major Utah crystal cave listed on eBay. HELP!!

Postby boogercaver71 » Nov 1, 2010 7:45 pm

wyandottecaver wrote:Then educate me rather than saying I must be crazy to find something wrong.

Other than the bates "being there first". How does the BLM legally justify placing one private group in charge of public property over another? There are apparently no valid or legal mining claims to support such control by any party. I am therefore wondering how ANY private entity can be placed in a position of authority or management over this piece of public property? Obviously they no longer have a mining claim. Do they hold a grazing lease?

Having the Bates resume their personal fiefdom over the area may well be a good outcome for the cave. I'm not so sure its a good outcome for setting precedents of private control over public domain, let alone a good example of policy.


Your right, this cave is on public land. No one can claim management, mineral or any other type of controlling rights,unless that person has a valid piece of paper from the BLM saying they do. I am not saying that the company trying to sell the "claim" has a valid one. I would want to personally go to the BLM office in question and look at the paperwork. If it is a valid mining claim, too bad area cavers can't buy the claim, put a new gate on it, and keep it out of harms way.
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