Ajax mine proponent buys ranch near Jacko Lake9,000-acre deal worth $21 million
The company behind the Ajax Mine proposal now owns more than 9,000 acres of ranch near Jacko Lake.
Norman Thompson, KGHM Ajax Mining’s community relations manager, said Friday the company has bought Sugarloaf Ranch from Teck. The deal, worth $21 million, completed July 31. The deal also transfers 5,000 acres of grazing leases, as well mineral claims on the ranch, to KGHM.
Thompson said the land sale was contemplated as part of the Ajax Mine proposal, and should come as “no surprise to anyone.”
He said only a small portion of the ranch will be needed for mine operations should the proposal go ahead. The remainder of the property will continue as a working cattle ranch. Ranch manager Brian Ciccone and three ranch hands will continue to work the lands and the herd of 300 or cattle.
Thompson agreed KGHM is not a ranching company, but said there is no reason to shut down the cattle operation.
“We have no reason to not carry on,” he said, adding the operation is an important part of the heritage of the area.