We decided to explore Four Mile Fork, about four miles up Smithers Creek from Route 60, because maps for a section of the Appalachian/Vandalia mine showed that a valley fill was there. The fill has not begun yet. Nevertheless, we found considerable damage from an old valley fill from a mine from at least 10 years ago. And we discovered a bear gently parting the bushes for edibles. She (we decided) ambled off, leaving us ever watchful the rest of our hike.


Debris at the mouth of Four Mile Fork.

Bob Gates filming more washout further up the creek. Notice the cut timbers, not trees that were uprouted.

An old sediment pond broke out and appeared to increase the washout.

Washout at the beginning of the pond, coming down the mountain from the valley fill area.