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No working gold mines in region, but there's hope in Beardmore-Geraldton.

No working gold mines in region, but there's hope in Beardmore-Geraldton

While there are currently no producing gold mines in the Beardmore-Geraldton mining district, there is no shortage of people looking and hoping.

Last year there were about 90 exploration programs in the district, noted John Mason, resident geologist with the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines. "Hopefully, there will be up to 100 or more by year end," said Mason.

However, as of mid-May, activity had decreased from the last year, with only one drilling activity at break-up, noted Mason.

The work is being conducted by small-scale prospectors, junior mining companies and majors, such as Placer Dome Inc.

Much of the exploration activity is on the west side of the Beardmore-Geraldton belt, said Mason. "You've got a real hot-bed of prospecting in Beardmore."

The town has only 400 to 500 people, but there are about 60 to 70 projects planned with help from the new Ontario Prospectors Assistance Program (OPAP), Mason noted.

However, he pointed out that much of the groundwork will be done just to keep claims active.

"The trend for two years is that less money is being spent," Mason said.

In 1989 expenses were 40 per cent less than what was spent on exploration in 1988, he said, adding that people are doing a minimum to hold on to their claims.

However, Mason believes that OPAP will help increase exploration.

Last year 89 exploration programs were undertaken by prospectors and companies, and 17,514 claims were active. About 85 per cent of the exploration dollars were spent in the search for gold.

The Beardmore-Geraldton district also includes Jellicoe, Longlac, Nakina, Fort Hope, Lansdowne House, Summer Beaver and Webequie.

FOISEY PROPERTY

Freewest Resources Inc. of Montreal has decided to abandon the Foisey property, northeast of Beardmore in Rickaby Township, after final drilling over the winter.

"It hasn't been all that great," said Freewest president Mac Watson.

The company had worked the property for a few years.

Watson said it has been abandoned because other properties are more attractive, such as the very promising Holloway property 25 miles east of Matheson.

Watson said the Holloway property looks really good. "It's shaping up to be a big one."

MAGNET MINE

The Magnet Mine, about 10 kilometres west of Geraldton in Errington Township, is now in the care-and-maintenance stage.

Roxmark Mines Ltd. of Toronto is waiting for more financing before proceeding further.

Project manager Paul Brugger noted that the company has been trying to get more financing since the middle of last year.

He believes that financing may be tough to find unless market conditions change or the price of gold increases.

Magnet Mine produced about 150,000 ounces of gold when active in the 1940s and 1950s.

Over the last six or seven years the property was re-explored and showed a possible indicated reserve of 944,000 tons at .17 ounces per ton.

Roxmark Mines Ltd. had been in a joint venture with Ateba Mines Inc. on the project. However, Ateba withdrew in March of 1989, and its interest is being exhausted. The interest can be diluted down to 30 per cent, after which it is automatically converted to a net-profit interest.

BROOKBANK PROPERTY

The Brookbank Property in Irwin Township northeast of Beardmore is tied up in litigation.

The dispute is between two junior companies, Metalore Resources Ltd. and Ontex Resources Ltd.

The inventory of the property is 1.3 million tons of ore at an average grade of .3 ounces of gold per ton.

Placer Dome Inc. has an option on the property with Metalore Resources.

ATEBA MINES INC.

Ateba Mines Inc. is working the former Pan-Empire mine in Beardmore. Extensive renovations to the mill components were underway for most of the year.

Ateba is treating waste material from the mine., which produced from the mi

LEITCH PROPERTY

Significant diamond drilling was carried out at the Leitch property by Teck Explorations Ltd. However, no work has been done at the site for more than a year.
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Title Annotation:Gold Mining Report; Ontario
Author:Bickford, Paul
Publication:Northern Ontario Business
Date:Jul 1, 1990
Words:668
Previous Article:Slump in exploration activity in Sioux Lookout.
Next Article:Geological surveys reveal gold and copper potential in northwest.
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