A Site Tour with the Three Associations

In the past year, AME has undergone some internal changes. Earlier this year, Kendra Johnston joined as President and CEO. Also, in March 2018, four of our contractors who had worked at Roundup 2019 joined AME as permanent staff. Around the same time, Michael Goehring joined the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) as President and CEO. With all these changes and new staff, it seemed time to spend some time together to learn and connect. Over the summer, Kendra and Michael had the opportunity to open channels of communication and collaboration. We invited MABC and Alec Morrison at Mining Suppliers Association of BC (MSABC) along to experience an adventure outside of the office before the busy-ness of September kicked in. So where did we go and what did we do?

On a warm but overcast late August afternoon, all of us headed up to Merritt, we needed to meet at Teck Highland Valley Copper (HVC) by 9:30am the next day. At HVC, we met Jacqui, donned our safety gear and headed out on a tour of the pit and the processing plant, followed by a great lunch with HVC and Teck and a tour of the state-of-the-art core facility. We were impressed with how HVC and Teck are incorporating new logging processes for their drill core that include core scanning. This is allowing them to use geochemical information effectively in the mapping of their core. Leaving HVC, we headed to Kamloops to visit and tour the industrious and innovative Kal Tire Mining Retread and Repair plant where mining haul truck tires are maintained and retreaded. We then headed to a scrumptious BBQ dinner at Rob’s rural yurt home outside of Merritt. The evening was filled with chatting around the log fire, and the night sky was present in all of its glory in a clear and clean sky, the best way for watching the stars.

The next day we headed to Westhaven Ventures Inc.’s Core Shack and site. Part of the tour was a drive up Shovelnose Mountain where we took in the views, rocks and a diamond drill in action. Following a lunch along the Coquihalla at Britton Creek, we headed out to Abbotsford for a tour of the Cox Station and Valley quarries. We discovered that the group of companies along the edge of Sumas Mountain just off Highway 1, and members of the BC Stone, Sand & Gravel Association, are a real family to each other and their neighbours. We have a very full and busy two days, and the tour was well worth it.

Some comments from AME staff:

Jonathan Buchanan, Director Regulatory and Technical Policy: The staff tour was inspiring, and it was fascinating to see the contrast between a temporary drill pad, hidden among the trees on an ATV trail, and a facility such as Teck Highland Valley Copper, that provides 1,400 jobs on-site and benefits hundreds – if not thousands – more. Also, one of my part-time jobs starting, oh, nearly thirty years ago was laying out material for and inspecting cotton filtration bags for the mining industry to dry out the bubbly concoctions from the mill. There may have been a few HVC bags in there.  

Faheemah Hamid, Administrative Coordinator: I come from a luxury fashion retail background, with my most recent and relevant role being in the Luxury jewelry and gemstone industry. Before I joined AME, I had very little knowledge of the Mineral Exploration & Mining industry and most of what I have learned is through committee meetings at the office. After experiencing the tours and visiting the core shacks for myself, I had not imagined the physical labor, expertise and equipment required to undertake these projects. This trip has given me a better understanding of why AME’s work and advocacy for this industry is extremely important for the province and country’s economic growth and development.

Savannah Nadeau, Events Manager: I have a background in events and promotion management and have worked in many aspects of event management, primarily in the food and beverage industry. From this trip, I learned how much work and focus is paid on reclamation of a site after a mine has closed, this was something I was completely unaware of before joining AME.

Stasia Wegner, Member Services Manager: My background is in marketing and strategy. Prior to joining AME, I had no knowledge or experience of this industry other than seeing an underground mine on my travels through South America, a different experience compared to BC. After sitting in on the Mineral Exploration and Mining Essentials course at MinEx, it was great to see the whole process come to life. I think the biggest thing that I learned is the uncertainty of exploration process.

We would like to acknowledge and give a big thank you to all the people that made this trip so great.

Teck Highland Valley Copper
Jacqui, Lisa and Joel
Gerald, the Chief Mine Geologist in the Core Shack

Kal Tire
Kevin and Bert

Westhaven Ventures, Shovelnose Gold project
Ed for organizing and Gareth, Peter, Marty and Lori for the tour

Mainland, Cox Quarry
Dani

Valley Gravel Sales
Barry

Thank you MABC and MSABC for joining us. Check out the Photo Album.