Ontario is made up of a number of greenstone belts that are rich in gold. The largest of these belts is the Abitibi belt which has produced over 160,000,000 ounces of gold since 1909. With several gold bearing belts, Ontario is home to a number of gold mining regions. The major gold producing regions that you should consider are:
Abitibi Gold Belt
The Abitibi gold belt region runs from Wawa in Ontario all the way to Val-d’Or in Quebec. The Abitibi gold belt is geologically connected to the larger granite greenstone gneiss terrain in America often referred to as the Abitibi subprovince.
The gold rich belt is host to a number of established gold mining districts that have over 100 gold mines. Key among these mining districts is Timmins, Kirkland Lake and Led Lake regions among others. Other than gold, the Abitibi gold belt is also rich in other metals. It is reported that the belt has produced copper over 15 billion pounds, zinc about 35 billion pounds and silver over 400 million ounces.
The Timmins area is covered by both metamorphogenic and synvolcanic mineralization. This is the key determinant of the kind of ore mined here. The Synvolcanic ores are made up of pyrite carbonates, epigenetic ventrelated breccias, stratiform quartz-ankerite and the chert-cabonate sedimentary rocks. Metamorphogenic ores on the other hand are made up of quartz-carbonate fracture fillings and epigenetics.
Gold was discovered for the first time in the Timmins mining district in 1909 by Harry Preston and his colleagues near Lake Porcupine. The site of this first discovery was developed into the now famous Dome gold mine that still produces gold up to this day.
The news of the discovery spread fast and soon the area was teaming with prospectors. Another major discovery was made at the site of the site of Hollinger mine later the same year which produced about 19.3 million ounces of gold between 1910 and 1968. This triggered the famous Porcupine Gold Rush. Thanks to the many gold discoveries in this region, Canada became the second largest gold producer in the world by 1930.
Today several gold mines still operates in the area. Some of the major gold mines developed in the Timmins are Dome Mine, Pamour Mine, Hollinger Mines, Kidd Mine, McIntyre Mines, Broulan Reef Mine, Hoyle Pond Mine, Buffalo Ankerite Mine, Naybob Gold Mines, Cincinnati, Hallnor Mine, Coniaurum Mine, Delnite Mine, Crown Mines, Payma Aunor Mine, and Ster Mine among others.
The region around the Kirkland Lake is another important gold mining region in Ontario. Ed Hargreaves and William Wright were the first prospectors to discover gold in the region in 1911. They staked a claim at what was later named the Kirkland Lake gold camp. They later build three larger mines around the area; the Lakeshore mine, the Sylvanite mine and the Wright-Hargreaves mine.
This first discovery created a buzz among prospectors and created a Kirkland Lake gold rush that brought in more prospectors which saw the discovery of more gold claims. By 1930s the region had over 22 active gold mines and produced about 38 million ores of gold. Today the Kirkland lake region is still active with gold mining. Prospectors also report finding a lot of gold nuggets in abandoned mines and old river beds.
The Red Lake region is another important gold producing region in Ontario. Gold was first discovered near the Red Lake in 1925 by two Brother Ray Howey and Lome Haileybury. This triggered the Red lake gold rush of 1926. This led to discovery of gold in more places including the Red Lake Gold mine which is Canada’s largest gold mine.
Hemlo is another important gold producing area in Ontario. Gold here was discovered here in the early 1980 by prospectors Richard Hughes, Don Mckinnon and John Larch. This discovery created a buzz that resulted in a modern day gold rush in the area.
Two major mining companies (Goliath Resources and Golden Sceptre) were the first to acquire the rights to the land where gold was discovered but were letter bought by Noranda. The company then established one of the Hemlo camp gold mine which is one of Canada’s most productive gold mine. There are several other mining companies operating in the area on other mines and this makes Hemlo one of the most active gold mining areas not only in Ontario but in all of Canada.
The geology of the Hemlo area suggests that gold deposit in the area is specially is connected to high stress zones made up of the Volcanic sedimentary of the Moose volcanic complex and the Hemlo’s own greenstone belt. The Hemlo lode goldfields have been overprinted by metamorphism and disfigurement resulting, to some degree, in a few proposed depositional models for its emplacement. No single model plainly represents the majority of the qualities of the gold deposits.