INVENTORY FILE NO.
NAME OF PROPERTY
(Fox Mine No. 11)
1993- Black Hawk Mining Inc.
2000 - 95 Wellington St.
Toronto, ON M5J 2N7
The deposit consists of a large body of massive and semi-massive
sulphides in a series of Precambrian volcanic (greenstone) and interbedded
sedimentary rocks, about 1.6 km (1 mi.) west of their contact with the Snake
Lake gabbroic intrusive. Pyrite is the main sulphide mineral present, with
smaller amounts of chalcopyrite, sphalerite and pyrrhotite. Surface diamond
drilling indicated an orebody approximately 411.5 m (1350 ft) long and 18.3 m
(60 ft) wide. Subsequent underground diamond drilling indicated that the orebody
in the lower levels consists of two sections, with a barren zone between.
orebody was about 33.5 m (110 ft) wide at the centre tapering toward the ends.
The alteration zone that envelops the ore zone is approximately 76.2 m (250 ft)
wide and 548.6+ m (1800+ ft) long with a general E-NE strike; it extends below
the 869 m (2850 ft) level. This zone, which consists of quartz-muscovite gneiss,
biotite-sericite gneiss and biotite-amphibolite gneiss, dips steeply, parallel
to the enclosing quartz-hornblende gneiss and quartz-hornblende-biotite gneiss,
part of the isoclinally folded strata, deeply dipping to the northwest and
overturned to the south with the axial plane trending 075°. This Wasekwan Group,
with subordinate Sickle Group rocks, have been generally metamorphosed to the
almandine-amphibolite facies, although some retrograde greenstone schist facies
occur in the immediate vicinity of the ore zone. Diorite-gabbro dykes occur in a
zone along the southern margin of the alteration zone that envelops the
Approximately 70% of the ore zone is composed of massive sulphides, with
the remaining 30% being disseminated sulphides. The massive ore consists of
pyrite with varying proportions of interstitial pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite,
sphalerite, arsenopyrite and inclusions of quartz-feldspar gangue. The
disseminated ore consists of the same sulphide assemblage, but contains a higher
percentage of silicate minerals.
"The distribution of copper (Cu) and zinc
(Zn) is generally inversely proportional. Higher copper values occur in the
core, eastern extremity, and western mid-section of the ore zone. The zinc
values are found along the footwall and hangingwall contacts and concentrated on
the western side of the copper zone. The copper grades increase with depth and
zinc grades decrease” (Fox mine Report, Sherritt Gordon Mines
MINERALS OR PRODUCTS OF VALUE
Zinc, gold, silver, pyrite, cadmium
EXPLORATION AND DEVELOPMENT
The Fox Lake property is located 45 km southwest of Lynn Lake, and is
accessible via Provincial Highway No. 396 from Lynn Lake. McVeigh Siding, 29 km
northeast of the Fox mine, is the nearest railway station.
was first staked, under the Fox group of claims, in 1947. Stanton (1949)
reported "a sparse dissemination of fine pyrrhotite" and a "magnetic anomaly" in
the area. The claims lapsed in 1948.
An airborne EM/Mag survey was carried
out by Canadian Nickel Company Limited in 1954, under Airborne Permit No. 5
(Non-confidential Assessment File No. 91615). Another airborne EM/Mag survey was
carried out by Selco Exploration Company Limited in 1960, under Airborne Permit
No. 31 (Non-confidential Assessment File No. 91626).
and magnetic surveys, done by Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited in 1960, indicated
several anomalies in the area. A ground EM survey in January 1961, located one
of the anomalies - a copper-zinc deposit at Fox Lake. The first diamond drill
hole on the anomaly intersected 39.7 m of mineralization averaging 0.45%
The property was staked (88186) in February 1961, by R.D. Falconer, and
assigned to J.R. Muter, in December of the same year. Early in 1961, Sherritt
Gordon Mines Limited let a contract to Canadian Longyear for diamond drilling on
the sulphide deposit. Erratic values in copper and zinc resulted from X-ray
drilling. By the end of 1961, a 41-hole 8014 m (26 292 ft) diamond drill program
outlined the deposit to a depth of 305 m (1000 ft). Milling tests indicated high
recoveries and good separation of copper and zinc. To protect the area, Sherritt
Gordon staked blocks of claims. Surface drilling, during the next 4 years,
indicated reserves of 11 133 400 tonnes (t) averaging 1.75% Cu and 2.35% Zn to
the 610 m (2000 ft) level.
In 1962 and 1963, a limited amount of work,
chiefly surveys was done, in connection with Fox Lake. In 1964, a stripping job
was undertaken in preparation for selection of a shaft site. A program of deep
drilling showed that the deposit continued to depth, three holes intersected the
deposit at depths of 457-564 m (1500-1850 ft). The average grade was 1.63% Cu,
1.23% Zn across a horizontal width of 13 m (43 ft) (Gobert, 1965). In the same
year, a winter road was cut from Fox Lake to Lynn Lake.
In May 1965, the
property was assigned to Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited (N.P.L.) and a
large-scale underground development program began. In addition to reserves of 11
133 400 t, a large tonnage of massive pyrite carrying 0.41% Cu and 2.38% Zn was
discovered in the walls of the deposit.
In October 1966, a 21-year lease
(M-8001) was issued to Sherritt Gordon. The mining plant, from the EL mine at
Lynn Lake (See: Mind No. 637), was transported to Fox Lake and re-erected. A
portion of the orebody was stripped off and approximately 907 t of ore was
quarried and transported to Lynn Lake for test purposes.
In 1967, the shaft
was sunk to 405 m (1327 ft) and levels were established at 122, 244, and 366 m
(400, 800 and 1200 ft) below surface. Copper, zinc and pyrite concentrates were
produced from sulphides in the pilot mill (the pyrite was shipped to Fort
Saskatchewan for experimental work). The ore was not difficult to mill, being
similar in this respect to the ore from the old mine at Sherridon, Manitoba(See:
Mind No. 839). Concentrates from Fox were trucked 29 km from the mine to McVeigh
Siding. Surface lease M-123 was issued to Sherritt Gordon in 1967.
agreement was made with Mitsubishi Metal Mining Company Limited, and Mitsubishi
Shoji Kaisha Limited, of Japan, for sale of the fox mine’s total output
of Cu concentrate, for the first ten years production. Agreement for the sale of
zinc concentrate, for the first five years of production, was made with Hudson
Bay Mining and Smelting Co. Limited (H.B.M. & S.) of Flin Flon,
During 1968, the production shaft was completed to 713 m
(2340 ft) and lateral development work and underground diamond drilling were
started. Crosscuts on the 366, 488 and 610 m (1200, 1600 and 2000 ft) levels
were driven through the orebody, and footwall drifts were started to the east
,on the 488 and 610 m levels. Diamond drill intersections on these two levels
partially defined the orebody. The western section of the orebody was located,
but not defined. The transmission line from the Laurie River generating station
to the Fox mine was finished, and a spur road was built to McVeigh Siding
on the CN Railway.
In 1969, underground development included 3450 m (11 320
ft) of drifting, 2041 m (6695 ft) of raising, and 12 649 m (41 499 ft) of
diamond drilling. Crosscuts were driven to the orebody on the 122 and 244 m (400
and 800 ft) levels. The "A" rock hoist from Lynn Lake (See: Mind No. 636) was
moved to the Fox mine and erected for use as the main
Construction at Fox was completed by May 1970, and the official
opening took place in September. "The orebody is divided along its strike length
into 100-foot (31 m) stopes, separated by 45-foot (14 m) pillars which extend
from footwall to hangingwall. The method of mining the ore is blasthole open
stoping with delayed fill" (Fox mine Report April 1976, Sherritt Gordon
Mines Limited). Ore was drawn from two stopes on the 366 m (1200 ft) and 610 m
(2000 ft) levels. Diamond drilling in the west end of the orebody, together with
regular outline drilling, added to the ore reserves.
In 1971, the Fox
mine fulfilled expectations, operating at a designed capacity of 2722 t
daily - producing a Cu concentrate assaying 25% Cu and 1.6% Zn, and a zinc
concentrate assaying 51.0% Zn and 1.6% Cu. Minor amounts of gold and silver were
recovered from the copper concentrate, and minor cadmium from the zinc
concentrate. Backfilling of the first stope started towards the end of the year,
and diamond drilling below the 610 m (2000 ft) level outlined additional ore
down to the 914 m (3000 ft) level. Calculated reserves below the 610 m (2000 ft)
level were 2 958 300 t averaging 2.83% Cu and 1.35% Zn. Total indicated ore
reserves at the end of 1971, were 13 157 900 t averaging 1.99% Cu and 2.35%
An airborne EM/Mag survey was carried out by Sherritt Gordon Mines
Limited in 1972 under Airborne Permit No. 105 (Non-confidential Assessment File
In 1973, work commenced on deepening the mine from the 610 m
(2000 ft) to the 671 m (2200 ft) level by means of an access decline. By the end
of the year, Sherritt Gordon took over much of the development work, which had
been previously performed by a contractor. More detailed underground diamond
drilling reduced the ore reserves to 10 707 800 t averaging 2.03% Cu and 2.15%
Zn. Rock geochemical sampling was done at 6-31 m (20-100 ft) intervals for a
distance of 518 m (1700 ft) across the orebody at the 640 m (2100 ft) level
crosscut to study sulphide haloes and wall rock alteration associated with the
deposit (Stephenson, 1973).
In 1974, the decline was completed to the 671 m
(2200 ft) level, and stope development work commenced below the 610 m (2000 ft)
level. In 1975, exploratory drilling was being planned for the entire property
(Sherritt Gordon, Annual Report 1975).
Production leases P.L. 10 to 13 were
issued to Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited in 1975. The access decline was being
extended to the 732 m (2400 ft) level that year. Also, in 1976, an airborne
EM/Mag survey was carried out by Questor Surveys Limited for the Manitoba
Government (Non-confidential Assessment File No. 91990). Underground mapping at
the 640 m (2100 ft) level, surface mapping, as well as logging and sampling of
five drill holes, was carried out by Lustig (1979). An alteration zone study,
using samples from the 640 m level, was done by Turek et al. (1976) and a
mineralogical study was done by Grice (1976).
In 1977, the access decline was
completed to the 732 m level and a drilling program was done at that level,
early results were 'encouraging'. Pillar recovery supplied 58% of the total mine
output in 1977. Surface geological mapping (1:50 000) was carried out by Zwanzig
Reconnaissance mapping (1:63 360) and rock geochemical sampling was
done by Falconbridge Nickel Mines Limited in 1977, under a joint venture
agreement with the Manitoba Government (Non-confidential Assessment File No.
Development work in 1978 was mainly related to stope access and
preparation. A stoping method using 16.5 cm (6.5 inch) diameter blastholes was
successfully introduced. Work continued on deepening the mine to the 762 m (2500
ft) level, to facilitate drilling to 1052 m (3450 ft).
In 1979, the decline
was deepened to the 756 m (2480 ft) level and drilling done on that level was
'inconclusive', although all six holes intersected the ore horizon, with the
deepest intersection at 1219 m (4000 ft). The first two holes intersected
mineralization between 914 m and 1036 m (3000 and 3400 ft). Another hole
intersected mineralization near 1097 m (3600 ft). According to the Canadian
Mining Journal (December 1979, p. 13), deep drilling in the eastern extension of
the mineralized zone gave 'negative' results. Development of the west lens stope
was underway on the 610 m (2000 ft) level in 1979, and mineable tonnages were
found. Surface drilling and geophysical surveys continued that year.
the access decline was completed to the 792 m (2600 ft) level and access drifts
were being developed to the west lens and the main ore zone at that level.
Surface exploration drilling to the south and west of the main ore zone was
continuing, as well as reconnaissance geological and geochemical exploration
work. An IP survey of the area was started that year.
In 1981, the main
haulage decline was completed to the 823 m (2700 ft) level and access drifts to
the main lens and west lens stopes at the 792 m level and to the west lens stope
at the 671 m (2200 ft) level were completed.
The installation of a borehole
hoisting system, to hoist ore from the 853 m (2800 ft) and 792 m (2600 ft)
levels to the 610 m (2000 ft) level, was started in 1982. The mine was shut down
for 15 weeks, starting on June 19, 1982.
The borehole hoist installation was
completed in May 1983, and the access decline was completed to the 853 m (2800
ft) level that year. It was announced that the mine would close in three years
(Winnipeg Free Press, April 12, 1983).
A study was undertaken by Sherritt
Gordon Mines Limited, University of Manitoba and the Manitoba Government to
document the geological setting of the Fox mine area and to assess the
potential for finding similar mineralization in the surrounding area (Olson,
1984). Mapping and sampling was done in a 3 square km area and ten exploration
drill holes were re-logged.
High grade copper ore in the lower levels
couldn't be mined due to unstable ground conditions (Sherritt Gordon, Third
Quarter Report, 1984). The mine closed on November 29, 1985. A total of 11 958
182 t of ore grading 1.82% Cu and 1.78% Zn were milled to closure (Olson,
In April 1988, Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited was renamed Sherritt
Gordon Limited. The property was transferred to Hayes Resources Inc. in June
1988. Hayes Resources was owned by American Barrick Resources Corporation, DCC
Equities Ltd. (a subsidiary of Dynamic Capital Corporation) and International
Pursuit Corporation (Winnipeg Free Press, February 12, 1988). American Barrick
Resources Corporation and DCC Equities Ltd. each held approximately a 50%
interest in Hayes Resources Inc. in March 1988 (Canadian Mines Handbook,
Hayes Resources Inc. purchased Sherritt Gordon's controlling shares
in SherrGold Inc. for $17 million and renamed the company LynnGold Resources
Inc. (Northern Miner, November 6, 1989). LynnGold Resources Inc. purchased mine
and mill assets of the Fox mine from Hayes Resources and acquired mineral
rights to the property in July 1988.
In March 1989, American Barrick
Resources Corporation and DCC Equities Ltd. each held a 26% interest in Hayes
Resources Inc., which controlled 62% of LynnGold Resources Inc. (Canadian Mines
Handbook, 1989-90). LynnGold Resources Inc. filed for bankruptcy on December 8,
1989 (Globe and Mail, December 15, 1989). Their assets in Lynn Lake, including
the Fox mine was held in trust by DCC equities until 1993, when they were
purchased by Black Hawk Mining Inc., as part of the Keystone Gold Project (See:
Mind 640 1043 and 969). As of 2002, no further work has been done on the
Production at Fox commenced in 1970, and by 1971, it was operating at
the rate of 0.9 million t per year. Method of mining is by sublevel open
stoping. High recoveries and separation of the copper and zinc can be made, with
copper concentration running better than 25% and zinc concentrates running 50%
Zn. Minor amounts of gold and silver were recovered from the copper concentrate,
and minor cadmium from the zinc concentrate. Table 1 gives production figures
from 1970 to 1985. Table 2 gives ore reserve figures from
Table 1. Production figures, 1970-1985.
Cash Tons Cu Conc. Zn Conc. Prod
(000) % Cu (tonnes) (000 lbs.) (000 lbs.)
1970 389 (353) 3.07 1.13 20 545 192
1971 1 022 (927) 2.86 1.54 55
039 11 318 $7.34
1972 946 (858) 2.14 1.40 36 256 10 898 $8.08
(874) 2.01 2.07 34 631 16 703 $9.65
1974 1 008 (915) 2.10 1.98 39 239 18 799
1975 1 007 (914) 1.74 1.81 31 493 21 750 14.94
1976 832 (755) 1.56
1.68 24 232 18 904
1977 890 (808) 1.46 1.93 24 042 24 841
1978 964 (875)
1.31 1.79 22 349 25 206
1979 852 (773) 1.19 1.82 18 108 23 097
(784) 1.40 1.56 21 458 18 152
1981 809 (734) 1.42 1.73 20 486 19 341
1982* 471 (427) 1.76 1.77 15 270 11 443
1983 611 (554) 2.1 1.94 23 812
1984 731 (663) 1.62 2.2 20 986 24 782
1985 231 (210) 1.88 2.09
(1st quarter production)
1985 224 (203) 1.77 2.14 (2nd quarter production)
*37 weeks production
Source: Sherritt Gordon Mines Limited, Annual
Table 2. Ore reserves (undiluted), 1964-1984.
Tons Au g/t
Year % Cu % Zn (oz/ton)* (oz/ton)*
12 100 (10 980) 1.72 2.28
1965-68 12 269 (11 133) 1.74 2.35
1969 11 300
(10 254) 1.96 2.74
1970 13 100 (11 887) 1.84 2.70
1971 14 500 (13 158)
1972 13 300 (12 069) 2.01 2.23
1973 11 800 (10 708) 2.03 2.15
1974 10 700 ( 9 710) 1.95 2.07 10.29 (0.3) 0.34 (0.01)
1975 8 700 ( 7
895) 1.92 2.08 10.29 (0.3) 0.34 (0.01)
1976 7 836 ( 7 111) 1.95 2.10 13.71
(0.4) 0.34 (0.01)
1977 7 093 ( 6 436) 1.83 2.12 10.29 (0.3) 0.34
1978 6 333 ( 5 747) 1.79 2.22 5.14 (0.15) 0.17 (0.005)
1979 5 917 (
5 369) 1.77 2.21 4.69 (0.137) 0.17 (0.005)
1980 5 411 ( 4 910) 1.78 2.29 5.14
(0.15) 0.27 (0.008)
1981 2 608 ( 2 367) 1.94 1.59
1982 1 910 ( 1 733)
2.34 1.58 14.06 (0.41) 0.48 (0.014)
1983 1 299 ( 1 179) 2.47 1.57
696 (, 632) 1.80 2.42 9.94 (0.29) 0.34 (0.01)
Source: Sherritt Gordon
Mines Limited, Annual Reports.
*Estimated values, Energy, Mines and Resources
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Open File 999, Geological Survey of Canada and Manitoba Energy and Mines, lake
sediment and water geochemical survey, scale 1:250 000.
of Canada 1985: Map 87-1985 Lynn Lake area; GSC Open File 1288,
Survey of Canada, lake sediment and water geochemical survey, scale
Geological Survey of Canada 1985: Maps C 21087G, C 41087G, 64C/12g,
h; Geological Survey
of Canada, aeromagnetic map, Total Field and Vertical
Gradient, scale 1:20 000.
Geological Survey of Canada 1986: Map Northwest
Manitoba, GSC Open File 1204, Geological
Survey of Canada, till geochemical
survey, scale 1:250 000.
Gilbert,H.P, Syme, E.C, Zwanzig, H.V,. Keay,
J.P, Thomas, M.W. 1978: Preliminary Map
1978 L-1 Lynn Lake area; Manitoba
Mineral Resources Division, geological map,
scale 1:100 000.
H.P., Syme, E.C. and Zwanzig, H.V. 1980: Map GP80-1-3 Laurie Lake; 1:50 000
geological map, accompanying Manitoba Mineral Resources Division, Paper
Hosain, I.T. 1981: Map OF81-5-4A/4B Laurie Lake area; 1:50 000
scale, compilation of airborne
EM and ground geophysical surveys,
accompanying Manitoba Mineral Resources Division, Report
Kaszycki, C.A. 1989: Maps 64C (As, Au, Cr, Ni, Cu, Zn, Mn, U, Pb,
Fe); 1:1 000 000 scale
computer-generated colour contour maps, accompanying
Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 2118.
Kaszycki, C.A., Way Nee,
V.J. 1986: Map Granville Lake; GSC Open File 1258, Geological
Canada and Manitoba Energy and Mines, surface geological map, scale
Kaszycki, C.A., Way Nee, V.J. 1990: Map 1759A Granville Lake,
Manitoba, Geological Survey of
Canada, surface geological map, scale 1:250
Manitoba Energy and Mines 1986: Map 64C, Granville Lake, Bedrock
Geology Compilation Map Series, Manitoba Energy and Mines, geological map, scale
Manitoba Mines Branch: Map 64C/12 NE Claim Map Series, Circa
1975; Mining Recording,
Manitoba Mines Branch, scale 1:31
Manitoba Mines Branch and Geological Survey of Canada 1963: Map
2373G Laurie Lake,
aeromagnetic map, scale 1:63 360, Manitoba Mines Branch
and Geological Survey of Canada.
Milligan, G.C. 1960: Map No. 4 Laurie
Lake; 1:63 360 scale, geological map, accompanying
Manitoba Mines Branch,
Milligan, G.C. 1960: Map No. 10 Lynn Lake district;
1:126 720 scale, generalized geology and
sulphide occurrences, accompanying
Manitoba Mines Branch, Publication 57-1.
Province of Manitoba, Geological
Survey of Canada 1978: Map 35364G Granville Lake, Province
Geological Survey of Canada, airborne Gamma Ray Spectrometry, scale 1:250
Province of Manitoba and Geological Survey of Canada 1985: Maps C
21092G, C 41092G Laurie
Lake; Province of Manitoba and Geological Survey of
Canada, aeromagnetic Total Field and Vertical Gradient, colour compilation maps,
scale 1:50 000.
Rice, H.M.A. 1950: Map 1016 A, Reindeer Lake,
Saskatchewan-Manitoba; Geological Survey of
Canada, geological map, scale
Stanton 1949: Map 48-4 Dunphy Lakes area; 1:31 680 scale,
geological map, accompanying
publication by Stanton (1949), Manitoba Mines
Surveys and Mapping Branch: Map 64 C/12 Laurie Lake; Surveys and
Ottawa, topographic map, scale 1:50 000.
H.V., Preliminary Map 1984 C-2 Granville Lake; Manitoba Mineral Resources
geological map, scale 1:250 000.
By December 31, 1972, of the outstanding shares, 36% was held by
Newmont Mining Corporation and 53% was held by Canadians (Task Force,
A symbol locating the mine is printed on Figure 30 (see Davies et al.,
NOTE: 10 holes on 'a claim group' near the Fox mine intersected
a 'potentially mineable zone containing copper and zinc' (Sherritt Gordon Mines
Limited, Annual Report 1979).
?; DEK; PA; JJJ
01-71 02-73; 06-75; 11-90; 05-02