HB Mine Townsite - Salmo, BC
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member BK-Hunters
N 49° 08.510 W 117° 12.178
11U E 485196 N 5443243
Quick Description: First staked in 1910, what became known as the Hudson's Bay Mine operated, though not continuously, until 1978. Some forty years later a small town was built to house workers.
Location: British Columbia, Canada
Date Posted: 7/26/2014 11:19:32 AM
Waymark Code: WMM5P0
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member TheBeanTeam
Views: 6

Long Description:
When Cominco (see below) reopened the HB Mine in the early '50s they built a small residential area to house workers, eliminating the need to commute daily to the mine. In the spring the road to the mine could get sufficiently muddy as to make it difficult to get to the mine. Similarly, in the winter heavy snowfalls could prevent access.

The workers would have moved out in 1978 when the mine closed, but it appears that the buildings, of which seven still stand, have been lived in more recently, possibly by squatters, possibly by renters. Today the houses stand empty and trash strewn.


It was placer gold in Sheep Creek, below the site of this mine, that attracted prospectors to the Salmo area of southern BC. Two prospectors, P.F. Horton and H.M. Billings, discovered and staked the HB in 1910 and immediately bonded it to the Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company (Cominco) in nearby Trail. Production began in 1912 with 742 tons of ore being shipped to the Trail smelter that year. The ore was basically lead-zinc-silver containing about 4% zinc, 1% lead and several grams per ton of silver.

Most of what is left at the mine was built in the early 1950s when it was reopened by Cominco. Most of the reduction mill in front of the actual mine is in pretty bad shape - the roof has fallen in and the interior is beginning to sag. The ore hopper above at the entrance to the mine is a place I would not go. It's in pretty scary condition. Apparently now owned by Sultan Minerals, it is private property, but no signs are posted, so we walked right in to get some pix.

The HB property is located on Aspen Creek, a tributary of Sheep Creek, 8 kilometres southeast of Salmo. The north end of the No. 1 orebody outcropped at an elevation of 1219 metres, west of Aspen Creek and almost a 1.6 kilometres north of Sheep Creek.

The HB mine was initially staked in 1907 and put into production in a limited manner in 1912. In 1927 the property was acquired by the Consolidated Mining and Smelting Company ("Cominco"). Exploration by Cominco in 1949-1950 lead to the discovery of three parallel, steeply dipping, ore zones extending for 900 metres in a north-south direction across the claims. In 1955 the HB Mine was put into production at 1,000 t/day. Ten years later in 1965 the adjacent Garnet Lead-Zinc Mine was put into production as part of Cominco's HB mining operation.

Between 1912 and 1978 the HB and Garnet mines produced a total of 6,656,101 tonnes of ore at an average grade of 4.1% Zinc, 0.8% Lead and 4.8 g/tonne Silver. (BC Geological Survey, Detail Production Report, MINFILE). Seventy percent of this production is estimated to have been mined from the HB Mine deposits.

The HB and Garnet mines closed in August 1978. As of December 31, 1978, the remaining measured and indicated reserves for the HB Mine were reported by Canadian Pacific Limited as approximately 36,287 tonnes grading 0.1 per cent lead and 4.1 per cent zinc.

On Oct 27, 2009 Sultan Minerals Acquired the mine in exchange for $15,000 cash and 100,000 shares of Sultan. [They plan to initially continue exploration of the ore body with an eye to reopening it some time in the future.]
From Sultan Minerals

Ore Hoppers at Mine Face
HB Mine Houses

Reason for Abandonment: Economic

Date Abandoned: 1/1/1978

Related Web Page: [Web Link]

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