The whole Wasatch range had or maybe still has large deposits of silver.and gold. Park City was a silver mining camp. back in 1800s. I thin Park City was the 2nd largest silver mining district in the nation. The Comstock load was the richest. The Hearst fortune was made in Park City Hearst bought a claim for a few thousand dollars from a broke miner. He dug another 30 feet and hit a vain that netted over 40 million. There are over 1500 miles of tunnels under Park City Mountan Resort and Deer Valley. I don't know much about the history of The Cottonwood Canyons. Alta at one int was a real town with a main st and in its hayday had a population of 5000-7000. Brighton in The Big Cottonwood canyon was a summer retreat for Brigham Young. If you take a look at some topo maps. There are tons of old mines marked from Logan on down. Like all good Western areas there are legands of lost mines and buried treasure For a hobbie a friend goes up into the mountains and pans for gold. He has found a few flakes of gold but will never get rich. On a hike I found an old claim, a name was carved into an Aspen tree with a date from 1897. It was right by an old slush box and rock foundation of a cabin.