Deadline approaching for Ontario prospectors to make switch to map staking (CBC News Sudbury – January 3, 2018)

Prospectors will not be able to stake claims until online system is implemented in April

A deadline is fast approaching that will completely change the way Ontario prospectors do business. In April, the province is rolling in a new Mining Lands Administration System that will see prospectors stake their claims online, instead of on the ground.

As of Jan. 9, no new claims will be filed until the online system is fully functional.Gino Chitaroni, the president of the Northern Prospectors Association, based in Cobalt, Ont. says there’s a push to physically stake a claim before the deadline.

“Everything’s frozen for about four months,” he explained.”If you’ve got something that’s hot, you want to get it now. You don’t want to wait because … once you go to map-staking, anybody can get it. My prediction is it’s going to be hard on the prospecting community to survive.”

Jessica Bjorkman, vice-president of the Northwestern Ontario Prospectors Association, says staking claims online will change how prospectors work. She says a number of prospectors in northern Ontario will be venturing out to stake claims as a symbolic gesture.

“It’s the end of a very long era of going out with an axe and claiming the group that way,” she said.”It’s more just a way of looking back and a cool memory.”

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