Twin Creeks is an open-pit mine, owned and operated by Nevada Gold Mines LLC, a joint venture between Barrick Gold Corporation (Barrick) (61.5%) and Newmont Corporation (Newmont) (38.5%). Twin Creeks is located in Humboldt County, Nevada, approximately 125 kilometers northwest of Elko. Under the joint venture, Barrick’s Turquoise Ridge Mine and Newmont’s Twin Creeks Complex were combined as a single operation, now known as Turquoise Ridge.
Turquoise Ridge Surface (Newmont’s former Twin Creeks property) was created in 1993 by the consolidation of the Rabbit Creek Mine and the Chimney Creek Mine. The former Rabbit Creek Mine is located in the south-end of the property, including what is now known as Mega Pit. The former Chimney Creek Mine included the northern portion of the Mega Pit, the Vista Pit, and Vista Underground, which is located in the north-end of the property near the Sage autoclave and Juniper oxide mill.
Turquoise Ridge Surface operates the Vista and Mega pits, as well as providing ore rehandle and surface project work at Turquoise Ridge Underground. Turquoise Ridge Surface uses conventional open-pit mining methods including drilling, blasting, loading, and hauling. The current planned mining rate for Turquoise Ridge Surface is 71,000 tonnes of ore per day.
Run-of-mine (ROM) higher grade oxide ore from the Turquoise Ridge Surface sources are blended for gold grade, hardness, and carbonate content and fed to the Juniper Mill. ROM lower grade oxide ore from the Turquoise Ridge Surface sources are delivered to the Juniper heap leach pads.
Royal Gold holds a 2.0% gross proceeds royalty, where royalty payments are made on contained ounces rather than recovered ounces, from the Twin Creeks mine.
Royal Gold acquired this royalty interest effective October 1, 2008, as part of the acquisition of a royalty portfolio from Barrick Gold Corporation.