OMA member profile: Claude Resources Madsen — new mines from old sites (4)

This article was provided by the Ontario Mining Association (OMA), an organization that was established in 1920 to represent the mining industry of the province.

Ontario Mining Association member Claude Resources is making progress toward having its Madsen advanced exploration project contribute once again to the total of more than 26 million ounces of gold, which have been produced in the Red Lake district.  The Madsen Mine, which is located about 10 kilometres west of Red Lake, operated from 1938 to 1976 and produced more than 2.4 million ounces of gold during that period.

Since taking over the Madsen property in 2008, Claude Resources has been refurbishing the hoist, shaft and headframe, preparing the mine and mill for future production and carrying out further exploration drilling to expand resources.  Mitch Kocis, Madsen Project Manager, presides over decades old collections of geological maps of the site.

“This site goes back to the late 1930s and the changes in these maps tell a story,” he said.  “You can see the changes in the geologist’s thinking from decade to decade as part of the evolution of this property.”  The site has a 4,100-foot-plus shaft, a 500 ton per day mill that could be expanded to 750 tons per day and a tailings management facility in place. 
 
“We are working to prove up the resources,” said Mr. Kocis.  “Our Certificate of Approval is in place, our closure plan has been approved, our permit to take water is in place.  We are fully permitted and could start mining.”  Company reporting shows the Madsen property having 920,000-plus ounces of gold indicated and about 300,000 ounces as an inferred resource, as of the end of 2011.  
 
Claude Resources has 13 employees at the Madsen site, all of who are local, and about 15 contractors.  Currently, two exploration drills are working from underground stations and one exploration drill is working from surface.  The second phase of this exploration program is to be completed by the end of 2012.  “Madsen was ahead of the mining industry in Ontario with technological adaptations when it started and historically the average grade has been about 0.3 ounces of gold per ton,” said Mr. Kocis.
 
The company has been busy working to communicate and consult with local First Nations groups and to get involved in the community and support local job fairs and other activities.  It also has been working with the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Labour to ensure production can begin when the green light from head office is given.

Claude Resources is a gold mining and exploration company based in Saskatoon. It operates the Seabee Mine, which opened in 1991, in northeastern Saskatchewan and it owns the Amisk gold property near Flin Flon, Manitoba, along with the Madsen project.  Today, the company is celebrating the pouring of Seabee’s one millionth ounce of gold.  This mine, which employs about 360 people, has produced between 40,000 and 50,000 ounces of gold the past several years. 

The population of the Red Lake area, which is in the Central Time Zone, in northwestern Ontario is about 5,200.  The population of Madsen is estimated at 365.

Further information on the company can be found at www.clauderesources.com. This article is the sixteenth in a series of profiles of OMA member companies and their contributions to the vitality of Ontario’s society and economy.

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