Part of 160+ Years of History

In 1862, five years before Confederation, and nine years before British Columbia would join Canada, Billy Barker struck gold on Williams Creek (now Barkerville).  

In the nearly 160 years since that discovery, the area around Barkerville and present-day Wells has been home to numerous mining operations.

Osisko’s investments in Barkerville Gold Mines and the Cariboo Gold Project are part of a new legacy of mining that has a large focus on community engagement, consultation with Indigenous nations, remediating historic mining land, and investing in the future.

The Cariboo Gold Project received its environmental assessment from the Environmental Assessment Office of the Province of British Columbia on October 10, 2023.



Gold is discovered on the banks of the Fraser River. 


William “Billy” Barker spearheads a twenty-year, multi-billion-dollar project by initiating a mining venture in the Cariboo Region.  


Fred Wells arrives in the Cariboo Region and establishes the Town of Wells and the Cariboo Gold Quartz Mine.  


Population of Wells reaches 4500 people.


Cariboo Gold Quartz Mine closes and many residents moved away.


Mosquito Creek Mine operated in Wells.


A Bulk Sample is taken from Bonanza Ledge

December 2011

A Mines Act Permit is granted for the Bonanza Ledge Project, enabling a four-year mining operation.


Bonanza Ledge Mine begins its open pit operation and the QR Mill is restarted to process Bonanza Ledge ore. 


Engagement for the Cariboo Gold Project begins.  


Bonanza Ledge Mine permits are amended to allowing for underground operations to commence.

May 2020

Proposed Cariboo Gold Project is accepted for review under the BC Environmental Assessment Act, 2018. 

July 2020

The BC Environmental Assessment Office initiates the initial public comment period for the Cariboo Gold Project.  

December 2020

BC Environmental Assessment Office issues a notice that the proposed Cariboo Gold Project will proceed to the Environmental Assessment phase.  

November 2022

The Public Engagement report on the Cariboo Gold Project is made public.  

January 2023

Positive feasibility study announced for the Cariboo Gold Project. 

MAY 2023

Joint Permit Application for a Mines Act/Environmental Management Act permit for the Cariboo Gold Project is submitted to the Major Mines Office for review.

September 2023

The Effects Assessment concludes and the Cariboo Gold Project is referred to Ministers for Decision.

September 2023

The Joint Permit Application for the Cariboo Gold Project is accepted and review begins.


BC Environmental Assessment Office grants the Environmental Assessment Certificate for the project.

Q1 2024

Anticipated issuance of Mines Act and Environmental Management Act permits for the Cariboo Gold Project

Q2 2024

Construction is anticipated to begin for the Cariboo Gold Project.