The McKinley mine
John C. Wilson
The McKinley mine is located approximately 20 miles northwest of Gallup, New Mexico, and about 3 miles east of Window Rock, Arizona. It covers lands under leases held by Gulf Oil Corporation and operated by Pittsburg and Midway Coal Company.
The leases are as follows: U.S. Public Lands, 8,156 acres, even sections; Santa Fe Pacific Railroad Company, 7,613 acres, odd sections; and the Navajo Tribe, 11,157 acres, all in New Mexico. The surface is owned by the Navajo Tribe (reservation only), 11,157 acres; public lands, 642 acres, Indian allotted, 7,514 acres; and private lands by various individuals, 7,613 acres. Figure 1 shows the leased area.
The mine is designed to meet the rapidly expanding demand for low sulphur coal throughout the Southwest. The mine is being expanded from 400,000 tons per year to 4,000,000 tons of coal per year. Plans are under construction to bring the mine to an ultimate capacity of 5,000,000 tons per year. Increased production started in January 1976, and full production should be reached by 1979; at this rate the reserves will be depleted in 30 to 37 years.
Arizona Public Service Company will be the prime customer, requiring up to 3,000,000 tons per year for power generation at the Cholla plant near Joseph City, Arizona. The remainder of the coal produced will be sold to fill contracts to various customers for industrial uses. The principal customers are as follows: Arizona Public Service Company, Southwest Forest Industries, Kaiser Cement and Gypsum Corp., Hecla Mining Company and The Flintkote Company.
- Wilson, John C., 1977, The McKinley mine, in: San Juan Basin III, Fassett, J. E.; James, H. L.; Hodgson, Helen E., New Mexico Geological Society, Guidebook, 28th Field Conference, pp. 253-255.