Mine exploration may expandThe mining company that is about to begin drilling about 30 miles inland from Lake Superior may end up sinking 30 exploratory holes, more than the eight they’ve applied for with the Department of Natural Resources.
By: Mike Simonson, Wisconsin Public Radio, Superior Telegram
The mining company that is about to begin drilling about 30 miles inland from Lake Superior may end up sinking 30 exploratory holes, more than the eight they’ve applied for with the Department of Natural Resources.
G-Tac Mining President Bill Williams says eight holes is just the beginning. He says they need to fill in information gaps about the iron ore body along the Penokee Mountain Range. He says, "We’d like to find out what faults have gone through there, how thick the bedding is in that area, what the iron ore grade is. In addition to that, the testing that was performed back in the 1950’s, technology has caught up to that and passed it and surpassed it. So what we’d like to do now is take the core samples, split it up and do a new spectrum of tests on them.”
Thirty-five holes were drilled by other companies in the mine area during the 1950s.
The DNR issued a stormwater permit June 3rd, which allows G-Tac to begin its first phase of drilling eight holes. Williams expects drill rigs to be in place this month. He says, “Depending on the depth of the hole it could be three to four days on average. Some of the deeper holes may take five days. Some of the shallow holes may take two days.”
Six holes will be drilled in Iron County and two in the Ashland County. The depths will range from 350 to 1,500 feet.