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Jul 23, 2020

There are many, many theories about trying to find gold. The simplest, most tested, and clearly the most successful method is to look where gold has been found in the past.
Nowhere does that ring more true than in Red Lake, Ontario, the inconspicuous yet prolific gold mining district where nearly 45 mining companies are either operating or exploring. Yes, 45. It seems that the appetite for the area is growing daily.
The area’s Resident Geologist, Bill Paterson, took over the position in March, just after the annual Prospectors and Developers Convention (PDAC). There was certainly no shortage of work to tackle for the former District Geologist and Red Lake Gold Mine geologist.
It seems that every day mining news releases hit the industry wire services, the Red Lake mining region is mentioned.
“It surprised us too,” said Paterson. “A lot of my colleagues (other resident geologists) around the province are working with their old clients, but for us, our usage here in our office has gone exponential in the last couple of years.”
Is it the price of gold? “The geology has been the same for 2.8 billion years, so yes, it probably has something to do with the gold price,” Paterson told Mining Life. He adds that Red Lake has been isolated from the rest of the world when it comes to the impact of things like the 2008 financial crisis, or the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020.   
“Probably the big source of interest in Red Lake has been the discovery of Great Bear Resources about 15 minutes south of town,” he said.
Great Bear has a 90,000 metre drill program underway. They raised $33 million and are fully-funded all the way through 2022.

Bill Patterson photo
“That’s been the catalyst for probably a 200-250% increase in the areas under claim in the entire Red Lake Belt and renewed interest with a large group of juniors and new companies and private companies coming into Red Lake,” he added.
Paterson says Red Lake has largely been ignored by large-scale exploration for the past 20-30 years. Between the junior exploration companies already drilling and producers doing surface or infill drilling, Paterson estimates there are about 15 companies with active drill programs, a big leap from the past few years.
Great Bear took advantage of a now-defunct provincial  in early 2018 government program called JEAP, the Junior Exploration Assistance Program. To qualify for the $100,000 fund, you had to be a company with a market cap under $5 million and Great Bear qualified in early 2018. At the time of this writing, the company was valued at over $600 million.
The increase in enquiries through Paterson’s office are significant. “Right now, we are helping a lot of companies get access to information that isn’t readily available through our website, we will help to go look at some core, and a lot of companies are contacting me specifically to know if we know anyone who can come and work on these projects.”
“Pretty well anyone with a pulse who has an inclination to work in the bush is working in the bush right now,” he added.  
Companies that had been idle in the Red Lake region for several years are also kickstarting efforts to get the drills turning – that includes geophysical surveys, mapping, and geologists as well as prospectors.  
A few of the companies with their fingerprints on the region include: ALX Resources Corp., AurCrest Gold Inc., Benton Resources Inc., BTU Metals Corp., Confederation Minerals Ltd., Conquest Resources Ltd., Crown Mining Corp., Cypress Development Corp., Frontline Gold Corporation, Golden Share Resources Corporation, Golden Tag Resources Ltd., Great Bear Resources Ltd., International Montoro Resources Inc., MetalCORP Limited, Newmont, Nexus Gold Corp., O3 Mining Inc., Pacton Gold Inc., Planet Ventures Inc., Premier Gold Mines Ltd., Pure Gold Mining Inc., Red Lake Gold Inc., Redstar Gold Corp., Rubicon Minerals Corp., Rupert Resources Ltd., Sabina Gold & Silver Corp., Tri Origin Exploration Ltd., and West Red Lake Gold Mines Inc.
There are a limited number of hotels in the area for out of town contractors and there have been several homeowners who have also started renting out rooms or their entire home to take advantage of the influx of workers and companies looking for gold in the region.

Tags: Northern Ontario / Investment / Gold / All Articles