Read
the DNR report on silica sand mining in Wisconsin [PDF].
Contact information
For information on metallic mining, contact:
Phil Fauble
Waste & Materials Management Program
608-267-3538

Recent and potential metallic mining projects in Wisconsin

Click on the tabs below for short descriptions of metallic mineral deposits in Wisconsin that are currently being explored for mining or were the sites of recently closed mines.

map of metallic deposits in Wisconsin

In addition to the deposits described in the tabs below, you can read information about the closed Flambeau Mine and its reclamation.

Bend

Bend Deposit

Location: Chequamegon National Forest, Taylor County

The Bend Copper-Gold Deposit is located approximately 19 miles north-northwest of the city of Medford in Taylor County, within the Chequamegon National Forest. The deposit was originally discovered in 1986 and drilled in the early 1990s by the Jump River Joint Venture. The deposit is mostly copper-bearing sulfides with significant gold and minor amounts of silver in two overlapping zones, totaling an estimated 4.23 million tons of ore. Aquila Resources has obtained an exploration license from the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and is in the process of re-evaluating the deposit. If this deposit is ever developed it would likely be an underground mine.

The DNR performed a site inspection in January 2012 and exploratory drilling began in the same month.

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Crandon

Crandon Deposit

Location: Forest County

Exxon discovered the Crandon deposit, located on private property approximately five miles south of the city of Crandon, in 1976. Companies made two unsuccessful attempts at permitting, first in the 1980s and later between 1994 and 2003. The Chippewa and Potawatomi tribes purchased the site in 2003. There is no current mining activity.

The ore deposit is 4,900 feet long, 2,200 feet deep and 100 feet wide. It has an estimated 55 million tons of ore containing zinc, copper, lead, gold and silver. Had the deposit been mined, it would have been an underground mine with approximately 550 acres of surface processing and disposal areas.

Lynne

Lynne Deposit

Location: Oneida County

The Lynne deposit was discovered in 1990 by Noranda Exploration and is located on forestry land owned by Oneida County within the town of Lynne. It is primarily a zinc sulfide ore with significant lead and silver and minor amounts of gold and copper. The deposit is estimated to be approximately 5.6 million tons recoverable by open pit mining. Mining companies are considering further exploration and are working with Oneida County's forestry department and the county's mining impact committee to obtain exploration and development leases.

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Reef

Reef Deposit

Location: Eastern Marathon County

The Reef Deposit is a potential high-grade gold deposit located in the town of Easton in Marathon County. Although the occurrence of gold has been known in this area for many years, the current deposit was drilled and described by Noranda Exploration in the 1970s and 1980s. The deposit was estimated to contain up to 454,000 tons of high-grade gold reserves in scattered, shallow weathered sulfides and quartz breccias. The Aquila Resources company has acquired options on the mineral and surface rights and is conducting exploration drilling. If this deposit is developed, it would likely be an open pit mine.

The DNR issued an exploration license to Aquila Resources in spring 2011 and performed a site inspection in May 2011. Phase I of the exploratory drilling program began in July 2011 and continued until September 2011 with the completion of 24 boreholes. Phase II of the drilling program started in January 2012 to access sites too wet for drilling in the summer.

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Last revised: Wednesday June 11 2014