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Junior miner makes base metal discovery

A potentially large nickel-copper discovery in the James Bay Lowlands has created a lot of extra traffic in the office of Timmins resident geologist Brian Atkinson.

Interest in the area has increased ever since Noront Resources Ltd. announced the results of preliminary drilling on its Double Eagle property in August, he said.

Two new maps recently published by the Ontario Geological Survey interpreting the magnetic signature underlying the Paleozoic rocks of the James Bay Lowlands have been flying off the office shelves.

“It’s very exciting. It has generated a lot of additional interest in new staking in the area,” he said.

“We’re all waiting with bated breath to see if it will be big, or just a little blip. You can’t tell right now. The drilling to date is not enough to define whether it’s big or not. The great thing is the grades are really good. If they could find a significant deposit, that would be very worthwhile.”

Noront’s stock price has climbed from about 40 cents a share in August to $5.48 a share at press time.

The company’s latest drill results, released Oct. 30, make particular note of high-grade intersections in holes number seven and nine. Seventeen holes have been drilled on the property to date.

Hole number seven intersected 51.5 metres of mineralization, and included a 14.3 metre zone of massive sulphide mineralization that averaged 2.5 per cent copper and 6.3 per cent nickel.

Hole number nine intersected 45.6 metres of mineralization. Assays for the 17.4 metre upper massive sulphide section averaged 3.87 per cent copper and 4.82 per cent nickel.

If Noront’s discovery turns out to be significant, it will be expensive to develop a mine in the area and transport ore to market, said Atkinson. The property is located 500 km north of Timmins.

This isn’t the first time metal deposits have been found in this area in recent years. In 2003, De Beers Canada, Spider Resources Inc. and KWG Resources teamed up to search for diamond deposits in the region.

They found a significant copper-zinc deposit about 10 km away from where the Noront discovery was made.

“Now we’ve got two different deposit types in here,” said Atkinson. “That’s what you like to see – a multitude of different deposit types in an area ,which suggests there may be others to find as well.”

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