TerraX Minerals Inc., the company that’s exploring gold deposits north of Yellowknife, is hoping to shift its focus south of the city this winter.
The company has applied to do some exploratory drilling on property it owns south of the now-defunct Con gold mine.
Joe Campbell, president and CEO of TerraX, says the application remains before the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board. A decision could come within the next two weeks.
TerraX is the company driving the Yellowknife City Gold Project, a project that covers over 129 square kilometres of land within the Yellowknife Gold Belt.
The company has done most of its work north of the city since 2013 but has more recently shifted its focus southward.
Campbell hopes to proceed with exploratory drilling on land between Kam Lake and Great Slave Lake sometime this winter so that the company can determine how to move forward with the project.
“It’s basically to give us an idea if these structures that we’ve identified have any merit,” he said.
Campbell says it’s only logical to conduct exploratory work in areas where gold has been found before. During 65 years of mining, Con Mine produced more than six million ounces of gold.
TerraX has already done some field work and compiled information on the property in question.
If a winter drilling program is approved, results from it would help inform future decisions.
“There’s no guarantee that that first program will precipitate a future one,” Campbell told Moose FM. “It’ll depend on if we have any success at all.”
The City of Yellowknife, Yellowknife Chamber of Commerce and North Slave Métis Alliance have all submitted letters of support for the project.
Even though Campbell expects a decision to be delivered in the next couple weeks, work isn’t scheduled to begin until late February at the earliest.
The company hasn’t decided exactly where it would drill, but says it won’t be close to cabins or areas frequented by dog mushers or snowmobilers.
It would however, use pre-existing ice roads and trail networks to move equipment, vehicles and staff to the site.
Meanwhile, TerraX will continue its drilling program on property north of the city for a fourth straight winter.
Campbell is asking residents to be mindful of workers and equipment in the area, and to drive safely on roadways TerraX maintains.