Black Hills Clean Water Alliance has updated the map of mining claims in the Black Hills, as of April 20, 2022. According to the federal government’s 1872 Mining Law, a company or individual who has a mining claim has the right to explore and, if they find anything, the right to mine. However, State and County laws also apply to the situation.
As of the end of January 2022, there were about 148,000 acres of the Black Hills under active mining claims. As of April 20, 2022, there were about 172,000 acres under active claims, or an additional 24,000 acres. There were also claims on over 12,000 acres that were pending or under review, for a total of about 184,400 acres under claims. This is 15.4% of the Black Hills National Forest.
The new claims include uranium claims by Pegasus Resources in the southwestern Black Hills, as well as a number of new gold claims in the northern Black Hills.