POC: Bonne Terre Mine

 Nate Newkirk


This is something I've always wanted to do and still currently don't have

any concrete plans to do it. If there is interest I'd like to go and check

it out sometime in the near future.

So what is the Bonne Terre Mine?


For more than a generation, Bonne Terre Mine produced ton after ton of lead.

When the mine was abandoned in 1962, groundwater seeped in and filled the

miles of enormous caverns, tunnels and shafts.


Non-diving visitors also can enjoy the unique attraction by taking a

narrated walking tour or boat ride through the mine's enormous underground

rooms. Bonne Terre, which means "good earth" in French, was first founded

about 1750 by French miners.


Pillar Room:


Pontoon Tour:




Diving in Missouri? Yes, believe it or not, divers can take the plunge year

round at the legendary Bonne Terre Mine ( less than an hour

south of St. Louis. Named one of National Geographic magazine's Best

Adventures, the mine is the largest fresh water dive resort in the world.

Even famed underwater explorer Jacques Cousteau visited the mine and called

the billion-gallon lake's cobalt blue waters "magnificent." This is not

'cave diving', only need to be open water certified. It's all air

accessible, illuminated by half a million watts of above water lighting.

Water visibility exceeds 150 feet.




Divers will see the former lead mine, which closed in 1961, exactly as it

was left with abandoned ore carts, locomotives, picks and shovels, lunch

pails and even buildings.


Ore cart:

Calcite formations:


Billion gallon underwater lake:






Founded in 1946 
Built for The POC by Charles 
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