top of page


Idarado Mine

Location: Ouray, CO

Overview: CTL|Thompson was contracted to perform compression load tests on two different helical pile types for the foundation of a new maintenance building at the Idarado Mine located just outside of Ouray, Colorado. Poor subsurface conditions included approximately 5-feet of mine cuttings underlain by 10’ of soft silty sand followed with a nearly impenetrable layer of bedrock. The main concern of the client was the ability of the helical piles to withstand the compression force without buckling within the soft layer.


We decided the best approach to evaluate the piles was to use the Maintained Compression Test (Procedure B of ASTM D1143 – Standard Load Test Procedure for Deep Foundations). After setting up the frame over the test piles we began the roughly 36-hour load test. During the first compression test, we found the soil stratum below had relatively low-tension capacity and reaction piles began to pull out of the ground. CTL|T's representative recommended that any equipment the mining operation had available be put on the frame to help resist the uplift loading. Overall, the tests were taken to 167% of the design load to evaluate the buckling capacity. CTL|Thompson’s effort and ability to solve problems helped to keep production piles on schedule.

Services Provided: IAS Department Field Testing

Other related projects:

Soldier Canyon Filter Plant

CTL|Thompson performed a soil evaluation, OWTS design and provided geotechnical services for the new filter plant and 72-inch pipeline for the Soldier Canyon Filter Plant project in Fort Collins. CTL|Thompson also performed construction observations and materials testing services during construction including soil compaction testing, asphalt testing, concrete testing, masonry testing, and structural steel weld/bolt inspection.

Vantage-Bald Mountain Mine

CTL|Thompson teamed with mechanical and mining engineers to provide design and construction oversight for a gold mine redevelopment project for a major gold mining company in Elko, NV. The site, previously mined in the 1980s then left idle for over 2 decades, was to be greatly expanded and returned to service. The redevelopment included all new mine and support structures, including truck maintenance and administrative facilities and process buildings.

Jefferson County Bioenergy Facility

CTL|Thompson evaluated the soils and geologic characteristics of the project site in order to ensure that the substructure will properly support this facility. Our thorough assessment of the terrain allowed Jefferson County to save money in the long run by helping to establish a lasting foundation. This challenging project is located in a subsidence hazard zone within close proximity to a municipal solid waste fill. The existence of more than 40 feet of uncontrolled fill on site affects construction as well. 

bottom of page