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Mining company provides public with a golden glimpse

Alamos Gold provided the local public with a look at their operations during an open house event held on the afternoon of Wednesday, July 9.

An extensive array of drill core samples filled the company’s bay, located in the Lake County Industrial Park, with many a curious visitor perusing and asking questions.

Alamos Gold is currently in the exploration phase of a mining resource on Quartz Mountain, located about 30 miles west of Lakeview.

The samples displayed during the open house were part of a showcase of the company’s mapping and exploration process, said Linda Thorsted, the company’s director of government relations, community relations and permitting.

Once a sample is collected and the type of rock contained is observed, the samples are securely sent to a laboratory in Reno, Nev., for an analysis to determine the amount of gold present, she said.

“It’s hard to visualize,” Thorsted said.  “We found most of the attendees were very interested on where we are in the area.”

The company’s regional chief geologist for the U.S., Bruno Barde, as well as consulting geologist Wolf Schleisse provided technical details related to the company’s exploratory activities.

Informational components included discussions of how they collected rock samples and how specific gravity played a role in their resource analysis.

The turnaround for laboratory analysis is usually two to three weeks, but may be delayed substantially depending on market conditions, Thorsted said.

The Quartz Mountain site has a considerable historical past, she noted, with previous work dating as far back as the 1930 and the era of the Ewauna Box Company.

More recent activity encompassed the decade of the 1980s, but given the duration that has passed since that era, Alamos Gold must perform validity work to bring data up to the present.

Previous mining efforts in the 1980s were shelved for economic reasons, Thorsted said.

“All of these projects are very price sensitive,” she said.

Rock samples from 2006 and 2009 drilling programs were on display at the open house.  Rock cores from the 1980s were no longer available, as they were discarded long ago.

With the focus at present on resource exploration, Thorsted said that establishing a permanent mining operation could be “several years out.”  A colleague estimated the timeline of four to five years at a past Lake County Commissioners meeting presentation.

This timeframe largely depends on the results of their current exploratory activities, she said.

In the meantime, Alamos Gold is working to entrench itself in the community, adding support to such events as the Lake County Round-Up and Fair, sponsoring the Lake County Youth Mentor Program and supporting such projects as the new forthcoming soccer field.

For more information on the company, visit www.alamosgold.com.

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