Prospectors from all over Canada are flocking to the tiny town of Kirkland Lake, in Ontario, in the hope of staking claims and striking it rich.
LV & CU Prospectors run to jet-powered helicopters and take off (4 SHOTS)
SV Pilot and prospector in helicopter (2 SHOTS)
LV Helicopters taking off for gold fields
CU Female prospector talking to reporter in English
LV & SV people watch as helicopters take off
CU Gold prospector speaking in English
CU Prospectors examining large-scale map
CU Prospectors buying maps
CU Prospector talking to reporter in English
GV Views of mining town of Kirkland Lake, Ontario, With mining headgear
TRACKING SHOT: bushes near claim sites
TRANSCRIPT: VAUGHAM: "This is a gold rush -- 1979 style. No packhorses here, instead jet-helicopters, rented out for more than three hundred dollars an hour. Sharp at one o'clock, the new geological survey was released. Within ten minutes, prospectors had studied their contents, and the mad scramble was on -- into the bush to be first to stake the most promising claims."
VAUGHAM: "Are you all after the same piece of land do you think?"
WOMAN PROSPECTOR: "We don't know that yet -- we'll find out when we get out there."
VAUGHAM: "What do you do when you get out there?"
WOMEN PROSPECTOR: "Start staking - as fast as I can."
VAUGHAM: "Staking claims this way isn't for the small-time prospector. Inco, Falkenbridge and Imperial were some of the big concerns represented here today. And people who didn't have helicopters in the air were still interested in seeing who did -- and in which direction they were flying."
PROSPECTOR: "It's the modern method of prospecting. I think it detects the mineralisation - you've got to do a lot of hard york ... follow up with hard work and if you're lucky you get a winner."
VAUGHAM: "And what marks the possible winners are these black spots on the survey maps. Each shows an electromagnetic reading which could be an ore body beneath the surface. Today, prospectors and geologists were buying these maps -- in the day ahead they'll record their claims."
PROSPECTOR: "Two crews might stake the same area."
SECOND PROSPECTORS: "Probably four or five -- and that's where the fun starts."
VAUGHAM: "It won't be fun if the claims don't pan out, but this is Kirkland Lake -- the town that was literally built on gold. nearly a billion dollars worth was mined here earlier this century and that was long before gold approached the four hundred dollars U.S. an ounce. So today they're back out in the bush again, each prospector allowed to stake as many claims of a quarter square mile each as he or she cares to do."
REPORTER: MICHAEL VAUGHAM
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Prospectors from all over Canada are flocking to the tiny town of Kirkland Lake, in Ontario, in the hope of staking claims and striking it rich. Canada's biggest gold rush since the days of the Klondike, at the turn of the century, has been inspired by the rocketing gold price. This report by CBC's Michael Vaugham.