Once a prospector, always a prospector.
The Yukon Prospectors Association named Ron Stack this year’s prospector of the year.
But his love of being out on the land means he’s not exactly an easy guy to find if you want to talk about the accolades.
“He’s camping outside of town,” association president Mike Power said this week. “He’s basically off the grid.”
Stack was honoured for his discovery of the Goldbank Trend on Goldstrike Resources’s Plateau South property located north of Ross River in central Yukon.
The 11-kilometre zone of mineralization has rock samples returning assays up to 34.25 grams per tonne gold, according to the association.
Goldstrike began drill testing the zone this past summer.
The story of Stack’s find dates back to the 1920s, said Trevor Bremner, Goldstrike’s resource director and chief geologist.
That’s when, so the story goes, an old-timer started bringing coarse gold down the Hess River into Mayo.
“People never knew where he got it from, and that story’s been around for a long time.” Bremner said. “Ron always wanted to find the source of this gold…. He agreed to work for Goldstrike Resources for the summer with the idea that this might give him a chance to actually see for himself where this old-timer may have found the gold he was bringing out.
“It appears that it probably is the most likely source for this gold that the legend is based on.”
Stack discovered what is now known as the Ron Stack Zone more or less by accident, Bremner said.
He was on his way down to the Hess River to be picked up by a helicopter when he saw some interesting rocks.
“Ron’s got an eye for anything that is interesting or unusual,” Bremner said. “He got distracted and spent quite a while there pounding rocks and brought out some samples.”
“One of them came in at over an ounce to the ton of gold.”
The company started a small drill program this summer.
There were 17 shallow drill holes dug. They struck visible gold in four out of the 17, Bremner said.
“Which is pretty unheard of.”
Power said Stack is being recognized for more than just that one discovery.
He called the award a “cumulative recognition” for everything Stack has accomplished and everything he has given to the industry.
Stack has worked across the North for 40 years as a trapper, line cutter, claim staker, exploration technician and, of course, a prospector.
During the 1980s, he was active in the Rancheria area, finding numerous silver-lead-zinc showings.
He was a partner with Bill and Glenn Harris in staking, exploring and vending nickel-copper-platinum prospects in the Kluane Ranges.
He discovered the first kimberlites in the Parry Peninsula on the Arctic coast in what has turned out to be a major kimberlite field.
With Gary Lee and Bob Scott in 2009 and 2010, Stack discovered and optioned the Golden Culvert Property – a significant new gold showing on the Cantung Road, the association said.
Along with the recognition for Stack, the organization also announced a new inductee into the Prospectors Hall of Fame.
The late Jim McFaull was inducted at the fall general meeting.
McFaull was born in Regina in 1952 and completed a degree in geology at the University of British Columbia.
He began working with United Keno Hill Mines Ltd. in the 1970s and was a key member of a team of geologists who discovered millions of ounces of silver.
From 1990 until his death in 2012 he served as a director or officer with either the Yukon Chamber of Mines or the prospectors association.
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