Tag Archives: Strathcona Provincial Park

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Karst Creek waterfall is a disappearing waterfall located in Strathcona Provincial Park.

Karst Creek waterfall is a disappearing waterfall located in Strathcona Provincial Park.

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This is Pat one of our staff members enjoying the great outdoor of Strathcona Provincial Park.

This is Pat, he’s one of our  guides/outdoor educators members the great outdoors of Strathcona Provincial Park.

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Happy Christmas Eve!

Happy Christmas Eve!

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ptarmigan

The Vancouver Island White-tailed Ptarmigan is a small grouse with distinctive white tail and wings. While White-tailed Ptarmigan are found across North America and are not considered to be particularly threatened, the endemic subspecies on Vancouver Island is on the BC provincial Blue List. It is considered to be vulnerable to human and natural disturbance, given its small, isolated populations in the alpine.

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Strathcona Park Lodge has a long and interesting relationship with BC's oldest provincial park, Strathcona Provincial Park.  Read about by clicking here.

Strathcona Provincial Park is home to a mining operation at the end of Buttle Lake owned by Nystar.  Zinc, copper, lead, silver and gold are some the resources extracted from the mine.  For more information on the mine click here.

Commodity Zinc, Copper, Lead, Gold, Silver
Location British Columbia, Canada
Nearest Landmark: CAMPBELL RIVER
Distance: 90 Km SW from the nearest Landmark
Latitude: 49° 35′ (North)
Longitude: 125° 36′ (West)

Map

Satellite Image

Owners Nyrstar – 100%
Operator Nyrstar
Production 15 kt zinc, 1.6 kt copper, 0.4 kt lead, 5.1 koz gold, 220 koz silver in concentrate (2011)
Deposit Type Volcanogenic hosted massive sulphide (VHMS
Reserves & Resources N.A.
Mine Type Underground
Mining Method Drift and fill
Processing Method Grinding, gravity separation, flotation
Mine Life  To 2012
Mining Equipment Electric-hydraulic jumbos, diesel powered scoop trams
Processing equipment Underground crusher, Ball & rod mills, Outokumpu OK8 flotation cells, 7 ft. diameter
column cells (2), Larox pressure filters, Knelson gravity circuit
Employees 282 (2011)
Contact Information c/o Spit Rd
P.O. Box 8000
Campbell River, British Columbia
Canada V9W 5E2Phone:+ (250) 287-9271
Fax:+ (250) 287-7123
Last updated: July 9, 2012

Overview

 

Myra Falls is an underground zinc mine located in Strathcona – Westmin Provincial Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada. The property consists of claims, mining leases, and 23 crown granted claims, covering 3,629 hectares. The H-W and Lynx orebodies are part of the property.

Operations consist of 2 underground mines: the H-W mine and the Battle mine and are located approximately 1.8 km NW of the H-W mine. The original Myra Falls mill was constructed in 1966. The H-W mine commenced production in 1985 and a new mill was built at that time.

Mining operations are carried out using bulk-mining methods. A single production shaft at the 700 m level services both mines. Ore is processed through a modern 4,000 tpd mill facility. Zinc and copper/precious metals concentrates which are transported 90 km by truck to the port at Campbell River on the east coast of Vancouver Island for shipment overseas.

Myra Falls is an underground mining operation that produces zinc, copper, gold and silver. The mine occupies 3,600 hectares of land on the surface. However, underground there are more than 240km in drifts, shafts and stopes between the two separate mines.

Location

Myra Falls is located within Strathcona – Westmin Provincial Park on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, Canada in an area designated with a Class B park status. The various ecosystems within the park support many large mammals, birds and amphibians as well as spawning beds for trout and char. Although the mine controls 3,600 hectares (36 square km) of land, it impacts only 170 hectares (1.7 square km) and obeys current regulations that are in place to protect the park and minimize the operation’s impact.

 

Geology & Mineralization

Volcanic hosted massive sulfide (VHMS) deposits on Vancouver Island, including those at Myra Falls, are hosted by ancient island arc systems of the Paleozoic Sicker Group. The Sicker Group is exposed on Vancouver Island in several fault-bounded uplifts. At Myra Falls, the Devonian to Mississippian aged Sicker Group volcanic rocks are conformably overlain by limestone of the Permian aged Buttle Lake Formation. In order of decreasing age, the Sicker Group comprises the basement Price Formation andesite, Myra Formation felsic to mafic volcanic rocks, Thelwood Formation mafic fine-grained volcaniclastic rocks, Flower Ridge Formation mafic breccias and sills, and Buttle Lake limestone. Sulfide mineralogy at Myra Falls is typical of most VHMS deposits. The common sulfide minerals present in order of decreasing abundance are pyrite, sphalerite, chalcopyrite, and galena. Less common sulfides are pyrrhotite, arsenopyrite and the copper-rich sulfides bornite, renierite, and anilite. The VHMS deposits are hosted by the Myra Formation and are associated with two rhyolite horizons, the atdepth H-W Horizon and the near-surface Lynx-Myra-Price (L-M-P) Horizon.

 

Mining & Operation

Electric-hydraulic jumbos bore holes into the rock for blasting, which is done every day, producing 360 tonnes of ore. Muck is removed by diesel powered scoop trams and hauled to an underground crusher. After crushing, the ore is hoisted to the surface. There, it is moved on conveyor belts another 1km to the mill.

The mine does not have a waste rock dump as the mined waste rock is left in the underground.

 

Processing

The crushed ore enters the mill where it enters one of several ball and rod mills that grind it with water into sand size particles. The slurry is piped to froth flotation cells which produce separate copper and zinc concentrates. The mill, which was built in 1985, processes 1.4 million tons of ore every year. In 1992 a gravity circuit that used a BC-made Knelson concentrator was added to the mill to better recover the gold.

The Myra Falls concentrator is a fully automated plant. The rod mill/ ball mill circuit has a capacity of 4,000 tpd milling capacity. The flotation circuit uses Outokumpu OK8 flotation cells and two 7 ft. diameter column cells. Concentrate is filtered with Larox pressure filters. The plant produces copper, zinc and gold concentrate.

Coarser tailings are mixed with cement and pumped back in the mine being used to back-fill the mined out mining works. In 2012, the company developed a formal tailings storage facility closure plan as it had reached capacity.

Other facilities include a headframe and hoist building which houses compressors, a hydraulic backfill plant, and concentrate loadout facility in Campbell River.

Myra Falls uses a series of six special settling ponds, called polishing ponds, to clarify and purify the water that comes from the mine, mill, and the tailings pond. These waters contain dissolved metals and mill reagents, and are acidic. Sensors detect the pH level and help the environmental engineers decide how much lime or CO2 to add to the water.

Flocculating agents are added to cause the solids to settle out. Floating pumps move this solid material, or sludge, out of the ponds into the tailings area, leaving the water neutral and cleaner than before. It is tested daily to ensure it is safe for fish and fish habitat before being released into the environment. Most of the water, however, is pumped back into the mill to be used again.

Lime and flocculating agents are added to produce clear, clean and neutral water, which is tested daily for toxicity to ensure it is safe for fish and fish habitat before it is released into the environment.

On a daily basis, copper and zinc concentrates are trucked 90km to the company’s Discovery Terminal, a deep-sea port in Campbell River. The terminal has a storage capacity of 40,000 mt and ship loading capacity of 500 mt/hr. Once a month concentrate is shipped overseas to smelters in Japan and Korea.

 

Environment & Community

The Myra Falls mine is relatively unique in that it is surrounded by a Class A park and the boundary of its mineral claims fall entirely within the Strathcona-Westmin Class B Park. All mining activities, and the eventual reclamation and rehabilitation of the site, fall under a park-use permit. Constant monitoring ensures that environmental concerns and public safety are an integral part of the continuing mine program. It is interesting to note that not only are recreational activities not impeded by mining activities, but mine tours have become an important attraction for park visitors.

Myra Falls is currently conducting trials on soil cover systems to prevent future acid rock drainage from their ponds and old waste rock dumps. So far, the best material for the job is one made from a mixture of mine tailings and the sludge from their polishing ponds.

Source: http://www.infomine.com/minesite/minesite.asp?site=myrafalls

Hiking Strathcona’s Alpine

Backpack to an alpine tarn and then explore summits, ridges and meadows on day trips. 6 Days/5 Nights $1365

100 years ago pioneers imagined turning Strathcona Provincial Park into the next Yosemite or Banff with guides leading tourists into the Island Mountains.

The dream never materialized, but the raw material is still here. The glaciated peaks of Strathcona Park remain an undiscovered gem. On this guided trip you will uncover one of the most spectacular areas of the park.

Hike up to Bedwell Lake, an ideal base camp, where several valleys and ridges converge, providing easy access into hanging valleys, blue-green lakes and high summits. The campground at the lake is  easily accessed on a parks-grade trail and the lakes are great for a post hike swim.

Objectives range from glaciated Mount Tom Taylor, to secluded Cream Lake at the foot of Mount Septimus and the wild Bedwell Valley. Expect to knock off two or three of these objectives over the five day trip.

Hikers should be in good shape, capable of hiking for six to eight hours in rough terrain with significant elevation gain. The first and last day of hiking is with a full backpack.

$1365 6 Days/5 Nights
And dates possible for 2 or more people
(first night and last nights at SPL, 3 nights camping)

Sample Itinerary

Day 1 Arrive at Strathcona Park Lodge between 4:00-5:00 pm. Relax, settle into your room… go for a refreshing swim in the lake. At 5:00, meet your instructor and group. After dinner receive pack, provisions, and instruction for the trek.

Day 2 After breakfast, depart for the trailhead in a Lodge vehicle. Hike up the engineering marvel that is the Bedwell Trail to Baby Bedwell and then the established Bedwell Lake campsite beyond. This will be your base camp for the trip.

Day 3 Following a decent trail the group will hike to Cream Lake, a glacier fed pond at the foot of Mount Septimus. It’s an impressive view to enjoy over lunch. From here you should also see Della Falls, the highest waterfall in Canada, and Nine Peaks, a craggy, glaciated summit. Return to Bedwell Lake for a swim before dinner.

Day 4 The group with input from the guide can choose between following a rough trail into the scenic and wild Bedwell Valley or a long day to the summit of Mt Tom Taylor. Both are worthy objectives. Either way, return the Bedwell Lake for the night.

Day 5 Depart Bedwell Lake and hike out to the trailhead and drive back to the Lodge.

Day 6 Hearty breakfast and depart by 11:00 am.

Includes: accommodation (double occupancy), meals and out-trip food (from dinner on arrival day through breakfast on departure day), tents (2 person), transportation within the package, instruction and guiding services of an experienced outdoor leader(s). Group size is a maximum of 10. Clients will be sent an equipment list and medical/liability form prior to arrival.

All prices are in Canadian dollars, per person (based on double occupancy), and subject to applicable taxes.

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Rappelling at Crest Creek Crags in Strathcona Provincial Park.

Rappelling at Crest Creek Crags in Strathcona Provincial Park.

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In the summer of 2012 a family went on a guided hike to Karst Creek in Stathcona Provincial Park.  Karst is a distinctive topography in which the landscape is largely shaped by the dissolving action of water on carbonate bedrock (usually limestone, dolomite, or marble). This geological process, occurring over many thousands of years, results in unusual surface and subsurface features ranging from sinkholes, vertical shafts, disappearing streams, and springs, to complex underground drainage systems and caves.  Karst Creek offers an enjoyable 4km loop trail with lots to explore including Karst Creek waterfall!

In the summer of 2012 a family went on a guided hike to Karst Creek in Stathcona Provincial Park. Karst is a distinctive topography in which the landscape is largely shaped by the dissolving action of water on carbonate bedrock (usually limestone, dolomite, or marble). This geological process, occurring over many thousands of years, results in unusual surface and subsurface features ranging from sinkholes, vertical shafts, disappearing streams, and springs, to complex underground drainage systems and caves. Karst Creek offers an enjoyable 4km loop trail with lots to explore including Karst Creek waterfall!

Wolf River Fire

Things are pretty dry in Strathcona Provincial Park.  Click on the following link to find out about the fire status across BC, http://bcwildfire.ca/hprScripts/WildfireNews/Bans.asp.

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Karst Creek and Lady Falls

Lady Falls in Strathcona Provincial Park

Lady Falls in Strathcona Provincial Park

karst creek water fall

karst creek water fall