CHEYENNE, Wyo. (AP) — A former gold and copper mining area in Wyoming could get a new lease on life with help from former U.S. Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke.

Zinke recently joined the board of directors at U.S. Gold Corp., an Elko, Nevada-based company studying an old mine site 20 miles west of Cheyenne.

Wyoming is the top coal-mining state but has little hard-rock mining. The Copper King mine southeast of Curt Gowdy State Park has been idle for decades.

U.S. Gold Corp. President and CEO Edward Karr said Monday that new sampling shows profitable quantities of gold, copper, silver and zinc. The company plans more sampling this summer.

Zinke stepped down as Interior secretary in December. Karr says he hopes having Zinke on the board adds "gravitas" to his company.