Finding Gold in the Northwest Territories of Canada

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You can find gold, diamonds and other metals in the Northwest Territiries of Canada. The uranium for the first atomic bombs came from here during WW II.

Gold was discovered in the territory in 1898, but active mining did not commence until the mid 1930s in the area around Yellowknife. The opportunities for additional exploration and prospecting in the territory abound. There are other valuable mineral deposits that are being worked in the territory including uranium and the recent discoveries of diamonds have resulted from the opening of diamond mines.

A vast amount of information is available through the Northwest Territories Geoscience Office in Yellowknife. Another source of information is the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) in Toronto, Ontario. The Northern Miner in Toronto is a weekly newspaper covering the mining industry worldwide including the Northwest Territory.

Prospecting for Gold the Northwest Territories of Canada along with many other valuable minerals including copper, diamonds and uranium is a viable occupation. Parts of the territory along the Arctic coast and on the islands in the Arctic Ocean contain gas and oil. A few years ago a geologist inadvertently published the locations of test wells on Ellsmere Island and received a proper wigging for his efforts. The territory depends on mining for most of its economy. Today however the emphasis is on diamonds rather then gold.

A significant gold discovery has recently been announced at the REN gold site. The gold was discovered in a seven kilometer long iron formation. Gold is often associated with iron especially with the ore granular magnetite. Some of the grab samples of ore collected have as much as 198 g/t of gold. In follow-up drilling more gold was found in the host rocks adjacent to the gold rich body of iron ore.

Over the years there have been a number of gold mines found in the area around Yellowknife the territory’s capitol. This city was originally settled as a gold camp and became the capitol later. The diamond mining industry is now centered Yellowknife although the actual mines are located to the Northeast of the city around the Lac de Gras area.

The Northwest Territory covers a vast amount of land that even today has seen little exploration activity. Roads are few and far between in the territory most transportation is carried on by air. During the winter for a short time it is possible to drive trucks on the “Ice Road” these are frozen rivers and lakes used to carry cargoes to the operating mines around Yellowknife.

Besides gold there are several other minerals of value that are found in the territory including copper, lead and zinc, bismuth, cobalt and tungsten. These are all minerals that have already been mined in the territory. Radium and uranium have been mined in the area around Great Slave Lake. This is where the uranium came from to produce the first atomic bomb during WW II. Gemstones deposits beside diamonds have been found and are being explored. These include pink tourmaline, emeralds and green beryl. Another gemstone that has been found in the eastern part of the territory is iolite sometimes called “water sapphire.”

For more information about gold mining go here!

If you like to read about gems go here


Northwest Territories, Wikipedia,

Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada,

The Northern Miner,


About This Article

John Carter

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