Best of the Week
Most Popular
1. Stock Markets and the History Chart of the End of the World (With Presidential Cycles) - 28th Aug 20
2.Google, Apple, Amazon, Facebook... AI Tech Stocks Buying Levels and Valuations Q3 2020 - 31st Aug 20
3.The Inflation Mega-trend is Going Hyper! - 11th Sep 20
4.Is this the End of Capitalism? - 13th Sep 20
5.What's Driving Gold, Silver and What's Next? - 3rd Sep 20
6.QE4EVER! - 9th Sep 20
7.Gold Price Trend Forecast Analysis - Part1 - 7th Sep 20
8.The Fed May “Cause” The Next Stock Market Crash - 3rd Sep 20
9.Bitcoin Price Crash - You Will be Suprised What Happens Next - 7th Sep 20
10.NVIDIA Stock Price Soars on RTX 3000 Cornering the GPU Market for next 2 years! - 3rd Sep 20
Last 7 days
Pausing Stocks and Gold Fireworks - 21st Apr 21
Precious Metals and Miners Start of New Longer-Term Bullish Trend - P2 - 21st Apr 21
Looking For A Mortgage Broker? Here Is How To Hire One - 21st Apr 21
Amazon AMZN Stock PRIMEDAY SALE! Trend Analysis - 20th Apr 21
Stock Market Sentiment Speaks: You May Not Believe My 2021 Targets - 20th Apr 21
Stock Market Phase Two Projection - 20th Apr 21
Are Precious Metals & Miners Starting A New Longer-Term Bullish Trend? - 20th Apr 21
Inflation: First the Gain, Then the Pain… - 20th Apr 21
8 Stock Market Indicators in 1: Here's the Message of the Panic/Euphoria Model - 19th Apr 21
Gold - You Can Win a Battle, but Still Lose the War - 19th Apr 21
Will Interest Rates Rally Further Push Gold Price Down? - 19th Apr 21
Gold Fireworks Doubt the Official Inflation Story - 19th Apr 21
YuanPay Team Discuss The Process Of Crypto Diversification - 19th Apr 21
Central Banks May Ramp Up Gold Buying - 18th Apr 21
How to Get Rid of Driveway Weeds With Just WATER! 6 Months later NO Weeds, Ultimate Killer! - 18th Apr 21
State of the European Markets - DAX, FTSE, CAC, AEX, SMI, IBEX 35, S&P/MIB, Euro Stoxx 50, RTS - 18th Apr 21
Einvestment Fund: What You Need To Know About Investments - 18th Apr 21
Google Alphabet (GOOG) AI Deep Mind Stock Trend Analysis - 17th Apr 21
Stocks and Bonds Inflationary Slingshot - 17th Apr 21
Best Smartphone Selfie Stick Tripod Review by ATUMTEK Works with Samsung Galaxy and Iphone - 17th Apr 21
How to Give Budgie's First Bath | Easy Budgie Bathing and Water Training with Lettuce - 17th Apr 21
Record-breaking Decrease in New Passenger Vehicle Sale in Europe - 17th Apr 21
US Stocks Climb A “Wall Of Worry” To New Highs - 16th Apr 21
Gold’s Singular Role - 16th Apr 21
See what Anatomy of a Bursting Market Bubble looks like - 16th Apr 21
Many Stock Market Sectors Are Primed For Another Breakout Rally – Are You? - 16th Apr 21
What Skyrocketing US Home Prices Say About Inflation - 16th Apr 21
Still a Bullish Fever in Stocks? - 16th Apr 21
Trying to Buy Coinbase Stock on IPO Day - Institutional Investors Freeze out Retail Investors - 15th Apr 21
Stocks or Gold – Which Is in the Catbird Seat? - 15th Apr 21
Time For A Stock Market Melt-Up - 15th Apr 21
Stocks Bull Market Progression Now Shows Base Metal Strength - 15th Apr 21
AI Tech Stocks Buy Ratings, Levels and Valuations - 14th Apr 21
Easy 10% to 15% Overclock for 5600x, 5900x, 5950x Using AMD Ryzen Master Precision Boost Overdrive - 14th Apr 21
The Current Cannabis Sector Rally Is Pointing To Another Breakout - 14th Apr 21
U.S. Dollar Junk Bond Market The Easiest Money in History - 14th Apr 21
The SPY Is Nearing Resistance @ $410… What Is Next? - 14th Apr 21
The Curious Stock Market Staircase Rally - 14th Apr 21
Stocks are Heating Up - 14th Apr 21
Two Methods in Calculating For R&D Tax Credits - 14th Apr 21
Stock Market Minor Correction Due - 13th Apr 21
How to Feed Budgies Cucumbers - Best Vegetables Feeding for the First Time, Parakeet Care UK - 13th Apr 21
Biggest Inflation Threat in 40 Years Looms over Markets - 13th Apr 21
How to Get Rich with the Pareto Distribution - Tesco Example - 13th Apr 21
Litecoin and Bitcoin-Which Is Better? - 13th Apr 21
The Major Advantages Of Getting Your PhD Online - 12th Apr 21
Covid-19 Pandemic Current State for UK, US, Europe, Brazil Vaccinations vs Lockdown's Third Wave - 12th Apr 21
Why These Stock Market Indicators Should Grab Your Full Attention - 12th Apr 21
Rising Debt Means a Weaker US Dollar - 12th Apr 21
Another Gold Stocks Upleg - 12th Apr 21
AMD The ZEN Tech Stock - 12th Apr 21
Overclockers UK Build Quality - Why Glue Fan to CPU Heat sink Instead of Using Supplied Clips? - 12th Apr 21 -
What are the Key Capabilities You Should Look for in Fleet Management Software? - 12th Apr 21
What Is Bitcoin Gold? - 12th Apr 21
UK Covd-19 FREE Lateral Flow Self Testing Kits How Use for the First Time at Home - 10th Apr 21
NVIDIA Stock ARMED and Dangeorus! - 10th Apr 21
The History of Bitcoin Hard Forks - 10th Apr 21
Gold Mining Stocks: A House Built on Shaky Ground - 9th Apr 21
Stock Market On the Verge of a Pullback - 9th Apr 21
What Is Bitcoin Unlimited? - 9th Apr 21
Most Money Managers Gamble With Your Money - 9th Apr 21
Top 5 Evolving Trends For Mobile Casinos - 9th Apr 21
Top 5 AI Tech Stocks Investing 2021 Analysis - 8th Apr 21
Dow Stock Market Trend Forecast 2021 - Crash or Continuing Bull Run? - 8th Apr 21
Don’t Be Fooled by the Stock Market Rally - 8th Apr 21
Gold and Latin: Twin Pillars of Western Rejuvenation - 8th Apr 21
Stronger US Dollar Reacts To Global Market Concerns – Which ETFs Will Benefit? Part II - 8th Apr 21
You're invited: Spot the Next BIG Move in Oil, Gas, Energy ETFs - 8th Apr 21
Ladies and Gentlemen, Mr US Dollar is Back - 8th Apr 21
Stock Market New S&P 500 Highs or Metals Rising? - 8th Apr 21
Microsoft AI Azure Cloud Computing Driving Tech Giant Profits - 7th Apr 21
Amazon Tech Stock PRIMEDAY SALE- 7th Apr 21
The US has Metals Problem - Lithium, Graphite, Copper, Nickel Supplies - 7th Apr 21
Yes, the Fed Will Cover Biden’s $4 Trillion Deficit - 7th Apr 21
S&P 500 Fireworks and Gold Going Stronger - 7th Apr 21
Stock Market Perceived Vs. Actual Risks: The Key To Success - 7th Apr 21

Market Oracle FREE Newsletter

FIRST ACCESS to Nadeem Walayat’s Analysis and Trend Forecasts

Investing in the Melting Tundra

Stock-Markets / Metals & Mining Aug 15, 2007 - 11:50 AM GMT

By: Money_and_Markets


Sean Brodrick writes: On Sunday, I arrived in Yellowknife — a town steeped in rich gold mining history. I had a lot of time to reflect on that history as I took a long walk through town.

Why was I out in the brisk, sub-arctic August weather? Because my cab driver brought me to the wrong hotel from the airport. I didn't discover this until after he had driven off. I tipped him well, too!

The history of Yellowknife starts before man walked this forest primeval, in the time of the glaciers. The glaciers gouged an irregularly-shaped,11,000-square-mile depression in the earth's surface. As the glaciers receded, the Hay and Slave rivers were formed.

My cab driver dropped me off at this (wrong) hotel … thanks a lot, pal!

The Hay rises on the eastern slope of British Columbia's Rocky Mountains and flows generally north-northeast. The Slave pours out of Alberta and Saskatchewan's Athabasca Lake, flowing north-northwest. These two rivers meet at that glacier-gouged depression, and their waters created the ninth-largest lake in the world and the deepest in North America, Great Slave Lake. The lake is named after the Slavey tribe of Indians.

The white man's history in the area begins when Samuel Hearne, an explorer for the Hudson's Bay Company, reached the shores of Great Slave Lake in 1771. Accompanying Hearne on his travels were members of the Tatsanottine, a small Athabaskan-speaking North American Indian tribe. Hearne called them the "Copper Indians," but everyone else called them the Yellowknife Indians because the tribe made knives and other tools from yellow copper. The town of Yellowknife was named after these intrepid native explorers.

For a long time, visitors in this neck of the woods were after fur pelts. They took them from animals that were often clustered so thick it was like setting traps at a petting zoo. However, there was more than fur to be found …

Yellowknife Discovers The Yellow Metal

Yellowknife used to be known for pelts … now it's known for rocks.

In 1896, a prospector named E.A. Blakeney found some gold samples while passing through Yellowknife Bay. However, Blakeney quickly moved on. He was heading to a much bigger gold rush — the Klondike!

So gold was forgotten at Yellowknife until prospectors Johnny Baker and Herb Dixon paddled down the Yellowknife River and made a gold discovery in 1933. This date is generally viewed as the birth of the area's gold camp.

However, the boom didn't arrive until government geologists discovered gold on the east side of Yellowknife Bay a year later. And by 1935, the staking rush was on. Yellowknife became a boom town practically overnight.

Its population swelled to 1,000 by 1940, and by 1942 five separate gold mines were frantic beehives of activity. One of them, the Con Mine, started production in 1938 and produced more than five million ounces of gold.

In 1944, new exploration at the Giant Mine on the north side of town demonstrated there was a lot more gold in Yellowknife than anybody had imagined. It looked like the boom was ready to kick into higher gear. Then gold mining slowed drastically as all the miners left for a bigger cause — World War II. Operating costs skyrocketed. Was it the end of the boom?

Not a chance! The miners were back in 1946, and things picked right up where they left off. The Con Mine expanded and new mines started up. The momentum continued until 1952, when the Negus Mine closed.

The Giant mine was the last one to close …

Ironically enough, Yellowknife finally got its own government in 1953, just as the gold rush was winding down. Then, in 1967, it became the capital of the Northwest Territories. The inflow of government workers proved to be as big a boom as gold ever was!

That was fortunate since most mines were shut down by the 1970s because of depressed gold prices. Some operations did manage to survive until very recently, of course. For example, the Con Mine closed in November 2003 after 65 years in operation. The Giant Mine was the last to go when it closed in 2005.

These days, Yellowknife is considered one of the best places in the world to view the Northern Lights. But it was just a stop over for me. After buying a hat, a scarf, and some gloves (it's darn cold!) … I boarded a helicopter and headed for a place that was more remote … a place with even better views … and most importantly, a place with a whole 'nother kind of mining operation to check out …

Spending My Time at an Arctic Diamond Mining Camp

My deluxe accommodations at the mining camp.

On the way to the camp, we flew over tundra split by meandering streams and dotted with ice-cold lakes. Most of the caribou have moved on for the season. I spotted a few Canadian geese hanging around, but apparently they can no longer fly. I would worry about them surviving the winter, but the wolves will likely get them first.

Upon arrival to the small-but-busy camp, I found out that I'm bunking in a Weatherhaven hut … also known as an "arctic palace." That night, it rained like Noah was building an ark, but it was clearer and chilly by the morning. Lovely weather for what we're doing, which is flying around in a helicopter and looking at rocks.

Mark, who is the head geologist and co-founder of the company (and a very nice guy), is taking me to things he thinks are interesting. There are two other people up here visiting … they're from a film company making a promotional video for the company. Mark is starring in it, and since he's been talking to me a lot, I guess I'll be in it too.

We're mainly looking at diamondiferous kimberlite, the kind of rock you find diamonds in. The base rock surrounding it (making up this corner of Canada) is some of the oldest rock in the world — it's been here for three billion years! The kimberlite is much younger — roughly 500 million years old.

Time to inspect the kimberlite!

Because the kimberlite formed much deeper in the Earth, it erupted in carrot-shaped cones through the surrounding base rock. So the team here is searching for a very small amount of rock in a much bigger area to start with.

So how do they go about looking? They scan for scattered kimberlite on the surface, which is called "float." Then they do surveys with magnetics and soil samples to hunt down the main areas of interest. Next, they drill to find out if they're in the right spot.

By the way, even if you find a kimberlite pipe (as they're called), finding one that's worth mining is rare. Of the 6,200 kimberlite pipes known to exist, less than 1% have been developed into producing mines!

As you can see, diamond mining is an arduous and risky venture. But the rewards can be spectacular. I can't wait to learn more about what the team is finding here. Stay tuned!

Yours for trading profits,

By Sean Brodrick

This investment news is brought to you by Money and Markets . Money and Markets is a free daily investment newsletter from Martin D. Weiss and Weiss Research analysts offering the latest investing news and financial insights for the stock market, including tips and advice on investing in gold, energy and oil. Dr. Weiss is a leader in the fields of investing, interest rates, financial safety and economic forecasting. To view archives or subscribe, visit .

Money and Markets Archive

© 2005-2019 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.

Post Comment

Only logged in users are allowed to post comments. Register/ Log in

6 Critical Money Making Rules