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Air North opens up new routes due to B.C.'s active mining industry

Service is now being offered to Watson Lake, Prince George, Kelowna, and Nanaimo. Photo by Tim Kucharuk / CKRW FILE

Air North says thanks to increased mining activity, they are able to open up a new route to the public.

Air North is opening up more destinations to B-C, which includes resuming jet service to Watson Lake.

The airline says thanks to increased mining activity, they will offer service to Watson Lake, Prince George, Kelowna, and Nanaimo on Thursdays.

C-E-O Joe Sparling says the airline has already been flying the route as a charter since June, shuttling employees to Coeur Mining's Silvertip Mine.

"All along we had to be in conjunction with the mining company. We had arranged that ultimately we would be able to sell seats to the general public so that we would provide some access between Yukon and Prince George, with additional access to Kelowna and access to Nanaimo as well."

Five employees have been hired in Watson Lake to deliver check-in and ramp services.

Sparling says this is a good example of what happens when the mining industry is active.

"Although this particular mine isn't in Yukon, it's right across the border. The mining industry can support the local economy, help keep airfares lower for all Yukoners and provide additional access to more communities."

He says besides providing greater access to B-C, the route will help keep airfares affordable by absorbing some overhead expenses.

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