[While a bit dated, this article is very informative. Stan Sudol-RepublicOfMining.com]
With a strong financial backer, Calpine was able to carry out a comprehensive
exploration program. They drilled more than 100 holes that were geologically
encouraging, but which would not have attracted the attention of most investors.
It was hole number 109 that convinced investors of the significance of the Eskay
Creek discovery. That hole, one of the most impressive drill holes of all time,
encountered an extraordinary 208 meters that assayed 27 grams per tonne gold
and 30 g/t silver.
A corner of Canada’s western-most province hosts one of the richest mineral belts in the world. Few investors yet appreciate the enormous value of that region.
British Columbia, long recognized for its exceptional mineral wealth, is regaining prominence among mining investors. Canada in general is looking increasingly attractive as the mining industry faces mounting challenges in many jurisdictions around the globe.
Many parts of the province are highly prospective for minerals, but one region stands out: An area of northwestern British Columbia referred to as the Golden Triangle has produced enormous precious and base metal wealth over the past century. Rich gold and silver mines near the port city of Stewart established the potential of the region. The rich Eskay Creek mine 90 kilometers north of Stewart demonstrated the much larger potential of the region. Red Chris, another 100 kilometers north, is now in development.
An enormous amount of exploration work over several decades outlined numerous large precious and base metal deposits. For a host of reasons, the area went quiet before those mines could be developed. BC’s Golden Triangle has come alive again, with at least five world-class mining projects headed toward production.
Having already delivered millions of ounces of gold and tens of millions of ounces of silver, the region ranks as an important mineral district. Yet, that production represents only a tiny fraction of the metal now known to be hosted in the district.
Two exploration companies, with adjacent claims, have outlined an astonishing 130 million ounces of gold, 800 million ounces of silver and 20 billion pounds of copper. Both of those companies are now working toward feasibility studies. Combined production from those two proposed mines is projected to exceed a million ounces annually, with a nearly equivalent value of silver, copper and other metals.
While those advanced-stage projects have generated valuations at the billion dollar levels, other companies sitting on similar geology still trade for pennies a share. A couple of those companies are on the track of important discoveries.
A Long History of Mining
Northwestern British Columbia was first explored in the late 1890s by prospectors on their way to the great Yukon-Alaska gold rush. High-grade gold and silver discoveries were made and exploited on a small scale over the next several decades. The town of Stewart, a seaport, became the focal point for exploration in the region. A number of exceptionally high-grade discoveries were made just inland from that town.
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