The Kanichee Mine

The Kanichee Mine, also referred to as Ajax mine, is a rich reservoir of metals and also the reason why it’s called an iron titanium mine. Situated

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The Kanichee Mine

The Kanichee Mine, also referred to as Ajax mine, is a rich reservoir of metals and also the reason why it’s called an iron titanium mine. Situated in the Temagami area of northeastern Ontario, Canada, this mine is unfortunately a neglected one. It can be reached via Kanichee Mine road from Highway 11.

Although the mine was discovered back in 1910, the mining process has always been rather intermittent. Ever since its exploration, it has been sporadically worked at and closed down. However, despite all this, the Kanichee Mine has churned out 4.2 million pounds of metal.

The Kanichee Mine


Mining was performed in the region before 1920 by digging trenches and building shafts. During 1933 to 1936, Cuniptau Mines Limited descended a shaft of 246ft and set up a pilot smelter. This in turn lead to the generation of around 44,975.6 kilograms of copper, 29,641.6 kilograms of nickel and comparatively meager amounts of gold, silver, platinum and palladium. Afterwards, the sediment was examined by Ontario Nickel Corporation Limited (1937-1948) and Trebor Mines Limited (1948-1949).

Kanichee Mining Incorporated started digging all the dispersed and the vein ores some 115 ft deep during 1973-1976, following which no other mining work commenced. All that’s left of the area now is a small lake, precipitous cliffs surrounding it and unpaved roads. Kanichee Mine generates a total of 3 million pounds of copper and around 1.2 million pounds of nickel, gold, silver and platinum.

Kanichee Mine Minerals

Some of the major minerals generated by Kanichee Mine are pyrite, pyrrhotite and chalcopyrite. Aside from these, gold, silver, platinum and palladium are also found with sulfides there. Kanichee is one of the most prominent mines in the volcanic belt along with others like Sherman Mine in Chambers and Strathy Townships along with the Copperfields Mine on Temagami Island in Lake Temagami.

The oval shaped Kanichee layered intrusive complex is the biggest mafic-ultramafic bodies in felsic and mafic metavolcanic rocks in the Temagami greenstone belt. It constitutes five magmatic series, comprising of igneous rocks. Kanichee layered intrusive complex faces south, indicating that the magmatic rocks of kanichee layered intrusive complex lie low to the Earth’s crust.

The magmatic series, constituting Kanichee layered intrusive complex came into being through discreet pulses of molten rock. The composition of every pulse isn’t known completely, since a lot of pulses of magmatic intrusions, causing volcanic eruption, are needed to make evaluations regarding the cyclic nature of kanichee layered intrusive complex. The lower four magmatic series have heaps of Chromite, olivine and clinopyroxene which form rocks like dunite and clinopyroxenite. In the fifth magmatic series, iron titanium oxide, clinopyroxene and plagioclase are found in abundance.

The very first magmatic series constitute nickel-copper-PGE ore. All the magmatic series are formed with similar magma composition. A smaller lens-shaped region of quartz gabbro is present at the south of the intrusive complex. However, it is not yet known whether its magmatic origin varies distinctly from that of gabbros, present in Knaichee layered intrusive complex or not. Nevertheless, the rocks from the first magmatic series show distinct lick with the metavolcanic rocks of Temagami greenstone belt.

Image source: Wikipedia