Jayhawk Frontier Exploration Ltd.: Mineral Extraction Operation – Fort Liard Area

Michelle Wickham (NWT Archaeologist’s Permit 2010-022)

In October of 2010, on behalf of Jayhawk Frontier Exploration Ltd., Bison Historical Services Ltd. carried out a survey for heritage sites near Fort Liard in the NWT. Investigations were aimed at satisfying two objectives: a pre-impact examination of areas that may be impacted by the 2010/2011 mineral extraction operation development and a re-visit of all known sites within 150 metres of the proposed development to ensure they will be avoided by current development activities.

Michelle Wickham of Bison Historical Services Ltd., Calgary, AB, assisted by Bryan Hansen of Jayhawk Frontier Exploration Ltd., who acted as a local advisor, carried out the field investigations. Fieldwork was based out of Fort Liard and carried out by helicopter and on foot. Investigations were focused within Jayhawk Frontier Exp. Ltd. claim “E” (K13733) located in the narrow valley west of Fisherman Lake between Pointed Mountain and ‘B’ Mountain.

The proposed Jayhawk Frontier Exp. Ltd. claim “E” (K13733) will be developed during the winter of 2010/2011. Disturbances will include a potential water well, the quartz arenite equipment site, a general working area, and blasting area. The existing Amoco road will be utilized to gain access from Fort Liard.

An attempt was made to revisit a single known site (JcRx-4); the available location coordinates places JcRx-4 in an area that is currently under water (due to beaver activity and active springs). This assessment was unable to determine if JcRx-4 will be impacted by the proposed development. However subsurface tests in areas adjacent to the purported location of JcRx-4 did not identify any cultural materials.

The Jayhawk Frontier Exp. Ltd. claim “E” (K13733) was repeatedly overflown at low elevation and slow speed to facilitate the identification of any possible heritage concerns. This area was also examined on foot and high potential areas, such as flat benches adjacent the stream, the upper bench along the south edge of “B” Mountain and dry flat areas along the south side of the Amoco access road were repeatedly shovel tested (20 shovel tests). No previously unidentified heritage sites were encountered during these investigations. As such, it is recommended that the proposed Jayhawk Frontier Exploration Ltd. mineral extraction operation be permitted to proceed as planned.

(Edited by Shelley Crouch, Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre)