Chakwenga gold mine (abandoned)

Chakwenga Mine is situated in Lower Zambezi National Park, some 2 kilometers from the "Chakwenga" road entrance to Lower Zambezi National Park.

The mine and its environs consists of seven zones, explored by trenches and shallow shafts for gold mineralisation. Two of the prospecting pits contained minor gold, one of which was developed deeper to a maximum depth of 95 meters. Some 58 kilogrammes of gold were produced during its life (1934-1942). The reserves were estimated at 20,000 tonnes at between 5.6 and 7.0 g Au/tonne (Guernsey, 1941)

Now, the mine site consists of a small hill of sandy residue (the refuse from a small on-site flottation plant), two shafts, one of which with remnants of a metal construction for lifting out raw ore, the foundations and small walls of the washing/flottation plant, two industrial-sized steam-driven crushers and a furnace which must have provided the steam to drive the crushers. The furnace is adorned by a tall (~20 m) metal chimney, which is the only visible sign of the mine in the bush, when viewed from a distance.

The area is infested with "buffallo beans", which have all visitors scratching to high-heaven when (inadvertedly) touched.