Agnico Eagle Mines of Toronto has declared commercial production at the Amaruq mine, a satellite deposit 50 km northwest of its Meadowbank gold complex, itself located about 100 km by road north of Baker Lake In Nunavut.
All the Amaruq ore is treated at the Meadowbank mill, taking advantage of the existing equipment fleet, the mill, tailings, camp and airstrip. At the Amaruq site, a truck shop and warehouse, fuel storage and an additional camp facility have been erected.
The open pit Amaruq mine was given the go-ahead by the company’s directors in February 2017. Ore processing began in August 2019, and in the third quarter, production of 32,042 oz. of gold was attributed to the Amaruq open pit.
Ramp up of mining at Amaruq was hampered by slower than expected dewatering activities because of heavy rainfall. Dewatering is now essentially complete. While mining ramped up, planned maintenance to the crushing and grinding circuits was moved up from its original date in 2020. Consequently, the mill has been shut down since mid-September with the restart planned for Oct. 14, 2019.
Proven and probable reserves at the Amaruq deposit are 24.9 million tonnes grading 3.59 g/t gold or 2.9 million contained oz.
Agnico is promising an update of total costs for Amaruq with its third quarter report later this month.
(This article first appeared in the Canadian Mining Journal)