The mineral resource potential of the Piedra Wilderness Study Area is low. No occurrences of metallic minerals, of valuable industrial rocks and minerals, or of useful concentrations of organic fuels are known in the study area. However, a noneconomic occurrence of gypsum in the Jurassic Wanakah Formation lies a few hundred feet west of the WSA boundary, is believed to extend into the WSA, and has a low resource potential. Particular attention was paid to the possible occurrence of organic fuels in the Pennsylvanian Hermosa Formation, of uranium and vanadium in the Jurassic Entrada Sandstone and Morrison Formation, and of coal in the Cretaceous Dakota Sandstone. Thin coaly beds in the Dakota have a low resource potential. Extensive sampling of stream sediments, limited sampling of rock outcrops and springs, and a number of scintillometer traverses failed to pinpoint significant anomalies that might be clues to mineral deposits.
Mineral resource potential of the Piedra Wilderness Study Area, Archuleta and Hinsdale counties, Colorado