Mike Tremblay grew up in Chapleau, nine kilometres from the Borden Lake discovery, and couldn’t wait to get out. “I was getting to the point where I was going to be in trouble with the law if I didn’t figure out what I was going to do with myself, so I went to the guidance councellor and they figured I was the kind of guy who should be working outdoors.”
Forestry was out of the question, so Tremblay enrolled in a geology program at Sault College. In 1984, he was back in Chapleau and found work with Noranda on an outcrop sampling program. “They were redoing the highway at the time and blasted through an outcrop,” he recalled. “One of the guys I worked with mapped it and in his report called it vent proximal geology.
That was really interesting to me. Noranda’s idea was that it was good geology for a base metal deposit, but there was a little sniff of gold and I decided to follow it up.” A self-confessed “bush rat,” Tremblay received a series of grants through the Ontario Prospectors Assistance Program over the years.
“The OPAP grants of $10,000 allowed me to pay myself $100 a day, spend time near my home town and still do what I wanted to do on my own terms,” he said.
He first staked property in the Borden Lake area in 1987 and continued to work it for a total of 17 years between other jobs. He held the property from 1987 to 2000 and restaked it in 2006.
During the interval, it sat unclaimed. In wasn’t until the late ‘90s that he made a one gram discovery, “but at the time, Bre-X was all over the news as having a 20 million ounce high-grade discovery and there I was trying to sell this rock. I showed it to people and they scratched their heads. I thought, why am I even in this business?”
As the years went by, Tremblay did claim staking, line cutting and geophysics on contract and lived in Timmins, Matheson and Wawa. While working with his partner Jack Robert on a diamond discovery they made near Wawa, they’d drive right by the Borden Lake property on their way home to Timmins.
“I’d turn to Jack and say, ‘You see that island out there? There’s gold on that island” just to bug him,” said Tremblay.
Then the price of gold starting climbing “and we thought we’d better go have a look at it.”
Finally, in 2010, they talked Dave Palmer, president and CEO of Probe Mines, into checking it out, and the rest is history.
Spending 17 years working a property in an area that geologists dismissed as not worth the trouble takes a special character.
“I’m not a guy to beat the same horse,” he confided. “I couldn’t stand working around Timmins because every lawyer and doctor is staking claims.
They’re flogging the same horse over and over. Yes, there are new mines to be found there, but I wanted to be out finding my own showings and turning them into something.
“I was always out looking at the edges of where nobody else was looking.”
Tremblay and Robert have a royalty on part of the ground and have no doubts about whether it will go ahead.
“Once the money starts rolling in, it will be more than we’ll be able to spend,” said Tremblay.
For the original source, click here: http://www.sudburyminingsolutions.com/self-confessed-bush-rat-strikes-gold.html