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Exploration doyen Simon Ridgway comes full circle in the Yukon with Rackla Metals

Mineral explorer and mining financier Simon Ridgway in the field. Credit: Rackla Metals.

With renewed interest in the discovery potential of the eastern Yukon and the western Northwest Territories, accomplished mineral explorer and mining financier Simon Ridgway Rackla Metals (TSXV: RAK) CEO is returning to his roots with a focus on the region’s Tombstone Gold Belt.

Throughout his colourful career, broadly entailing playing poker by night and researching or ‘kicking rocks’ by day, Ridgway and the exploration teams under his guidance have discovered gold deposits in Honduras, Guatemala and Nicaragua and a silver-gold deposit in Mexico.

On the financial side, companies operating under his Gold Group Management umbrella have raised over C$450 million for exploration and development projects since 2003.

Ridway was also a founder and former chairman of Fortuna Silver Mines (TSX: FVI) and is credited for the discovery of Cerro Blanco, currently under development by Bluestone Resources (TSX: BSR); a co-founder of Radius Gold (TSXV: RDU), and CEO of Volcanic Gold Mines (TSXV: VG).  

But Ridgway started his career as a prospector in the Yukon in the 1970s. And Snowline Gold’s (CSE: SGD) recent (unexpected?) discovery at the Rogue project in the territory led him back to the region.

“I live to be out in the field looking at rocks,” Ridgeway tells The Northern Miner in an interview. “However, I discovered early in my career that I have a knack for deducing prospective discovery targets from undertaking desktop research. Canada has an amazing advantage: all prior work data becomes public when a company relinquishes claims, providing a basis for new interpretation by fresh eyes and minds.”

Following Snowline’s significant intrusive related gold discovery last year in the Yukon’s Tombstone Gold Belt, Ridgway and the Rackla team drew on their experience in the district to trace the geology and geophysics 90 km southeast across the Yukon-Northwest Territories border. As a result of this work, the company has recently acquired interests in six gold properties located in the belt, which lies within the Selwyn Basin. It plans to conduct exploration campaigns at several of these this year.

Ridgway started his career exploring the Tombstone Gold Belt for intrusives. This time, he is working some ways further east in an area he didn’t look at before because, for the most part, it was thought the eastern Yukon was not prospective for significant gold deposits.