N.W.T.'s Gahcho Kue mine celebrates one year of operations

The N.W.T.'s newest mine is about to turn one year old, as the Gahcho Kue mine celebrates its first anniversary on September 20. Take a tour of the mine in our photo gallery.

Territory's newest diamond mine turns 1 on September 20

Allan Rodel, Gahcho Kue's general manager, and Shayne Paul, senior mining manager, stand over the 5034 pit at the mine. The pit is the first of three planned for the site, and will continue to be mined for six more years. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)

The N.W.T.'s newest mine is about to turn one year old, as the Gahcho Kue mine celebrates its first anniversary on September 20.

Take a look through the day-to-day operations of the open-pit mine, located 280 kilometres northeast of Yellowknife, in our photo gallery:

Tens of thousands of tonnes of ore are removed every day from the pit, producing about 15,000 carats of rough diamonds on average. So far in 2017, over four million carats have been produced at Gahcho Kue. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Three massive Komatsu 830E trucks sit in the pit. The trucks each have a payload of approximately 220 tonnes. Each day, eight or nine of these trucks will take 20 to 30 loads of ore to be processed. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Shayne Paul stands beside the 830E's massive wheel in the mine's truck shop. Each tire on the 830E costs about $35,000, according to Paul. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Project manager Rob Coolen stands in front of a planned ammonium nitrate storage building. Once completed in December, the building will have a capacity of about 15,000 tonnes, large enough to store enough explosives to service the mine for over a year of operations. Currently, ammonium nitrate is stacked outdoors in bags. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
The mine's main buildings sit beside Kennady Lake. Different parts of the lake have been pumped out or dyked to allow for mining - another dyke is currently under construction. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Ore falls out of Gahcho Kue's process plant, where mined ore is broken down into smaller pieces before ultimately being hand sorted. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Processed ore is then loaded into a truck and then piled near the main building. Once each pit has been completely mined, the ore will then be returned to the pit. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Incredible quantities of rock move through the processing plant at breakneck speed. This conveyor belt, one of many in the facility, is three storeys tall. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Gahcho Kue's cultural centre displays dreamcatchers made by mine employees. Instructors from neighbouring communities are often flown into the mine to give workshops, and carvings and moccasins have also been made by employees on site. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
Richard Church heads up Gahcho Kue's emergency response team. Consisting entirely of volunteer employees, the mine rescue team currently stands at about 45. So far this year, there have been four medevacs at Gahcho Kue. (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)
The mine's emergency response team has it's own fire truck and ambulance, and the facility resembles a small fire hall. 'We are a small town,' said Church. 'We're completely self sufficient, self reliant.' (Garrett Hinchey/CBC)