I purchased land in an area that was near a former mine. From geological maps, I see the official location of the mine is several blocks away from my property, however, locals told me there were rumors the miners made illegal tunnels. Is there any way I can "scan" the ground to identify if there is any mine shaft under the property that could lead to a sinkhole?

  • Illegal = tunneling into somebody else’s claim. Check the claim maps to see if anyone had a claim. Jul 1, 2020 at 14:05

2 Answers 2


There is equipment such as "Ground Penetrating Radar" that can reveal underground artifacts without excavation but the range of such equipment is fairly limited.

Another option is to have some "core drill" samples taken on the property, usually in a grid-pattern, to identify any voids or other unexpected materials that may lie beneath the area. These can pretty much go as deep as your budget allows.


Yes, aerial photography is still used to find archaeological sites.

But if the tunnels are too deep they will not show up.

The resolution of the camera used and the height are also important factors.

  • I didn't get much sleep last night, so I must be missing something... How would aerial photography show a mine shaft from a known mine that went off, underground, in an unexpected, unknown, and unmapped direction?
    – FreeMan
    Jul 1, 2020 at 14:52

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