Abandoned mines are fascinating. The older the better. Ones with old rail tracks still sticking out of them, or perhaps a prospector skeleton, complete with large brimmed hat and rusted pick still in hand. Mines nowadays lack the dignity of old-timesy mines. Any moron with a bazillion dollars in investment capital can strip mine. But to dig down and wrestle the goods from the planet in all-out battle to the death, now that's nifty.
Anyway, I recently visited a near-by mine located near Bells Canyon named "The Deaf-Smith" mine, a name I suspect holds it's origins with the the fact that the mine was started by a Deaf man named Smith at some point in the last century. It didn't have any wooden beams or decomposing prospectors, but still had that old western-y feel to it. Apparently Mr. Smith spent a good portion of his life digging that mine into solid rock, which stretched at least 100 feet into the dark. The mine obviously didn't hold anything too awesome because no one has ever heard of Mr. Smith since. Actually, no one really knows what he was mining for. There aren't any other producing mines in the area, nor the geology to indicate that rare metals are present. So perhaps Mr. Smith was mining for nothing other than the pure love of mining. Anyway, Kudoes to Mr. Smith and his amazing rock-mine.
Now mimes on the other hand scare the quartz out of me. I would rather wonder around an abandoned mine than meet up with an active mime.