When Dave Webb acquired an choice in 1988 from Cominco to earn a 100% stake within the Mon gold undertaking, 45 km north of Yellowknife, the geologist and engineer rolled up his sleeves and bought proper right down to work.
Inside a 12 months he introduced in some underground mining tools and put a ramp into the hillside, extracting 2,300 tonnes of mineralized materials grading 26 grams gold per tonne, which was processed at a customized mill, he says. That work earned him 100% possession within the undertaking.
Over the following seven years, Webb and his companions, who financed manufacturing in alternate for a royalty, extracted a 15,000 tonne bulk pattern from a number of adits throughout the summer season months, finally recovering 15,000 oz. of gold.
“We went in on the base of the hill and mined it up hill,” remembers Webb, whose PhD centered on gold mineralization within the Yellowknife Greenstone Belt. “We did that from two stopes that reach to fifteen metres beneath floor. That’s very shallow, however historic drilling confirmed that the veins continued beneath the outdated stopes.”
Bulk sampling got here to an finish in 1997, when Mon’s permits to mine and mill a 100-tonne-per-day operation had been closed and on the similar time, the gold worth dropped to underneath US$300 per tonne.
Webb renewed the licences in 2013/2014, drilled 5 holes (379 metres) in 2016 that he says confirmed mineralization beneath the mined out stopes in Mon’s A-Zone, and obtained one other five-year renewal in December 2020, which permits the corporate to function at 100 tonnes per day till 2025.
Within the meantime, he optioned his privately held 622-hectare undertaking into an organization referred to as Sixty North Gold Mining (CSE: SXTY; US-OTC: SXNTF), which IPOed in April 2018, drove a ramp 17 metres beneath the bottom of the hill and deeper than the past-producing stopes, and now plans to undertake a 3rd bulk pattern of between 30,000 and 40,000 beginning in 2022.
“We plan to mine as much as that a lot in 2022 however we are going to solely convey to floor round one-tenth of that,” Webb says. “Shrinkage stopes require damaged muck to stay within the stope for floor assist and a working platform. We will solely take away as much as one-third of the tonnage mined till the stope is accomplished.”
He additionally notes that Sixty North gained’t have a mill on web site till 2023, and with underground temperatures round -5 levels Celsius, which means any rock delivered to floor will see -30 to -40 diploma temperatures over the winter. “That frozen rock takes many weeks to thaw earlier than it may be put although a mill,” he says.
Within the interim, Sixty North has signed contracts for development of a winter street, and can herald gas, extra explosives and miscellaneous tools.
“We’re going to finish improvement right down to about 24 metres beneath the outdated stopes and can develop one to a few stopes within the vein,” says Webb.
Webb notes that the corporate has determined to forego finishing a 43-101 compliant useful resource estimate on the Mon undertaking for now, as a result of, like many gold deposits within the Northwest Territories, Mon’s geology is complicated on account of its “high-grade” and “nuggety” nature.
He factors out that 32 historic drill holes by Cominco and two different corporations at Mon, have outlined grades beneath historic stopes starting from zero all the way in which as much as 52.45 grams gold per tonne over 2.7 metres.
“Though there’s a threat that the vein materials that has been encountered within the historic drill holes doesn’t yield economically recoverable gold, we really feel that the historical past of the Yellowknife Gold Belt demonstrates manufacturing grade can exceed that outlined by drilling,” he says. “We’re additionally conscious that the entire gold mines within the Yellowknife Gold Belt commenced manufacturing at charges underneath 250 tonnes per day — the Con, Negus and Discovery mines accounting for 7 million ounces of previous manufacturing, all began at 100 tonnes per day.”
Webb notes that the scale, grade and type of mineralization in addition to its host rock assemblage at Mon is just like the Discovery mine, 50 km to the north, and now owned by GoldMining Inc. (TSX: GOLD; NYSE-AM: GLDG) and a part of that firm’s Yellowknife gold undertaking. The Discovery mine, Webb says, mined 1 million tonnes of mineralized materials and recovered 1 million oz. of gold between 1949 and 1969.
“It is a excellent spot to search for gold,” he says of the Yellowknife Gold Belt, “and quite a few corporations put mines into manufacturing with out having reserves and we really feel we have now one other one.”
“If we went in with a drill program we’d spend about $45 to $50 to seek out every ounce of gold and nobody cares a couple of deposit till you’re at 100,000 ounces, so we’d should put $5-$6 million into it to provide you with a useful resource, however we are able to really put it into manufacturing at 100 tonnes per day on the similar worth,” he continues.
“It’s all underground, high-grade, slender width mining, and we consider, though we are able to’t show it, that the 30,000 to 40,000 tonnes of vein materials will yield 30 grams gold per tonne,” he says. “We’ll replicate what we have now accomplished previously, however we’ll be doing it with higher tools and applied sciences, and youthful males. Individuals will finally settle for what we’re doing by watching us do it.”
Administration and insiders personal about 17% of the junior explorer and quite a few non-public buyers maintain one other 20%. At presstime in Toronto the corporate’s shares had been buying and selling at 4¢, inside a 52-week buying and selling vary of three¢ and eight.5¢.
The previous Joint-Enterprise Article is PROMOTED CONTENT sponsored by SIXTY NORTH GOLD MINING and produced in cooperation with The Northern Miner. Go to www.sixtynorthgold.com for extra data.