Fremont National Forest, Ore. -- Quartz Mountain could soon provide a golden opportunity for Lake County.
Linda Thorstad of Alamos Gold claims there's plenty of gold to be found on Quartz Mountain...
"There certainly is. Historic resources indicate there is almost 3 million ounces of gold out there."
Extensive sampling in the late 1980's confirmed the presence of gold...but the cost of getting that gold proved too much when gold prices dropped.
"But today, there's better technology." Notes Lake County Commissioner Brad Winters. "Gold prices are higher."
Developers say they only expect to get about a gram of gold for every ton of earth processed...but even at that low concentration, they believe there's still a profit to be made.
Thorstad says that it would take a lot of workers to mine that gold...
"Well, it could result in 300 jobs or more. At the mine in Mexico, Alamos currently employs 500 people."
Commissioner Winters believes that would be huge for Lake County...
"In Lake County, one job here is equal to 300 in Multnomah county."
Winters adds that Alamos Gold still has to complete an extensive environmental impact process before any work can begin...
"And all indications are is that they do a very, very good environmental process whenever they get going."
Thorstad notes it will probably be several years before Alamos begins active mining.
Gold fever has been simmering in Lake County for several decades, but many are hoping that this latest prospect will pan out.
www.alamosgold.com purchased an interest in two mining areas on Quartz Mountain last September for three and a half million dollars.
If projections are correct, there could be three and a half billion dollars worth of gold on those claims.