The United States Geological Survey (USGS) will be working to extract a core sample in the Little Sheep Creek drainage southwest of Lima on the Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest, September 9-20.
The purpose of the drilling will be to remove a 600 foot long continuous core of Phosphoria shale from a six inch diameter hole. The goal for the USGS is to conduct research on the sample to analyze the rock’s geochemistry. Similar core samples have been gathered from Wyoming, Texas and Colorado.
Once completed, the hole will be filled with a bentonite slurry to 20 feet below the surface and then filled to the surface with cement and a metal cap will be welded on top.
This project will have minimal impact to the area and USGS will be taking all precautions to prevent spills, fires and provide for safety of the workers and public, as well as the security of equipment. Roads will not be constructed and the project area will be approximately 200’ x 200’ in size.
For more information, contact Geologist Erik Torgerson at the Dillon Ranger District at (406) 683-3900.