The original May Mac showing, discovered and staked in 1894, was developed by several shafts and three adit tunnels (Adits #’s 1, 2 & 3) on what is presently termed the Lower Skomac Vein. Some 32 tonnes (metric) (35 tons) of mineral were shipped over the subsequent nine years, grading 319 grams per tonne (g/t) gold (9.3 ounces per ton [oz/ton]). By 1904, a new parallel vein,
termed the Upper Skomac, was discovered, developed by a new adit tunnel (Adit #4) and mined, sporadically yielding 670 tonnes (790 tons) over the ensuing 33 years, grading in the range of 3,000 g/t (100 oz/ton) silver. Between 1937 and 1960, no development or production was recorded.
Skomac Mines Ltd. acquired the property in 1960. Between 1961 and 1965, a fifth adit tunnel (Adit #5) was developed on the Upper Skomac vein, from which some 553 tonnes (609 tons) of mineral were extracted, averaging 1.37 g/t (0.04 oz/ton) gold, and 185 g/t (5.41 oz/ton) silver, plus 2.1% lead and 1% zinc. During the same period, a diamond drill hole apparently intersected a new vein, with an intersected width of six feet, grading 21.5 g/t (0.62 oz/ton) gold, 14,400 g/t (420 oz/ton) silver, 19.9% lead and 2.1% copper. To date, no follow-up work has been done to further investigate this vein which lies a short distance west of the underground workings. However, follow-up ground geophysical surveys, trenching and diamond drilling are being planned at this target during the upcoming months.
In 1972, Robert Mine Ltd. acquired the property and between 1974 and 1976, developed another tunnel (Adit #6) on the Upper Skomac vein. Four mineral shoots were encountered and mined above the Adit #6, producing 950 tonnes (1,050 tons) of mineral averaging 3.66 g/t (0.107 oz/ton) gold, 593 g/t (17.3 oz/ton) silver, 3.2% lead, 2.0% zinc and 0.25% copper. The following year, another adit tunnel (Adit #7) was collared and driven for some 215 m (700 ft). According to verbal communication with the operator who owned the mine at that time, a vein was encountered some 60 m (200 ft) in the tunnel from the portal, which averaged in the range of 15 g/t (0.43 oz/ton) gold over a length of 15 m (50 ft) and an average width of 60 cm (2 ft). No silver values were mentioned. Due to the narrow width and low grades at that time, it was not further developed. This new vein has not been inspected, sampled or assayed, however, a program of underground sampling is being considered for the upcoming exploration program.
Underground diamond drilling by Robert Mine Ltd. in 1977 and 1978 consisted of several short holes which intersected three additional, parallel, hanging wall veins within ten meters of the Upper Skomac vein. While the narrow veins encountered contained only low precious metals values, it is typical in epithermal deposits of this type, that narrow low grade veins can blossom out into high grade veins of mineable width.
An 80 tonne per day flotation mill (90 tons/day) was installed in 1982. In 1983, some 1,570 tons of low grade ore were milled, yielding 100 tonnes.(110 tons) of bulk concentrate averaging 15.5 g/t (0.43 oz/ton) gold, 2,194 g/t (64 oz/ton) silver, plus lead and zinc. The mine has been inactive since that time.
Approximately half of the ore from the May Mac mine was direct-shipped without pre-concentration, and the other half processed on-site as a flotation concentrate. All production was shipped to the COMINCO smelter, some 180 kilometers (110 miles) away.
Here the truck is taking ore from the mill to CP rail train tracks nearby for shipment to Cominco smelter in Trail B.C