Image: Moscow scene - St Basil's, Red Square.
The Nickel 2006 International Study Tour visited a representative selection of the major magmatic nickel-copper-PGE/Cobalt sulphide deposits of the northern hemisphere during July, 2006.
Participants had the option of taking either the full tour -or- any block of 4 or more days up to the total number of days on the Tour as suited their availability and interest.
Those commencing at the beginning of the Tour assembled in Duluth, Minnesota, USA by 6:00 pm on Sunday 9 July, 2006, at the meeting point advised by Porter GeoConsultancy (PGC) approximately two weeks prior to the start of the tour.
The Tour technical program ended at Beijing airport, China, before 6:00 pm on Thursday 27 July 2006. Where specifically requested PGC booked accommodation in Beijing for the night of Thursday 27 July 2006.
For those who took less than the full tour, start and end points and dates were advised on confirmation of their registration. Alternate start and/or end points were Sudbury, Moscow and Beijing.
Each participant was responsible for all of their own accommodation and travel arrangements and costs to the start point and from the end point of the block of days or full tour nominated by the participant.
PGC arranged all surface and scheduled airline travel between the start and end points of the block of days or full tour nominated by the participant.
The cost of all surface travel from when each participant joined the tour to when they left was included in the Tour Fees which also covered all costs associated with the tour, namely development, organisation, escorting the tour, mine visits, seminars/workshops, venues, technical translators/geologists, expert consultants time & expenses, background literature, tour packs, introductory dinners, etc.
Air Fares for scheduled airline flights between when the participant joined and left the tour were an additional charge.
The Tour Fees and Air Fares were paid to PGC within two weeks of official confirmation of registration on the tour, but not less than one month before the commencement of the Tour. The air fares were charged at cost, and paid at the same time as the Tour Fees.
All accommodation reservations were made by PGC between the start and end dates/times of your tour. However, all accommodation costs were paid by the participants on checkout during the tour and NOT by PGC. Participants were also responsible for paying for their meals (except the Introductory Dinner) and other personal incidentals while on tour.
As part of the tour, each participant received a comprehensive collection of literature to read prior to commencement or during the tour. These papers covered the regional geology and distribution of mineralisation in the areas being considered, as well as descriptions of the individual deposits to be visited and other selected examples.
Approximately two weeks prior to the commencement of the tour, participants were also provided with a detailed itinerary with accommodation information, including the street address, phone and fax numbers and tariff for each hotel. All they needed to bring were their field gear, personal affects, and credit card/travellers cheques or cash to pay for accommodation and meals.
Tour places were limited, and the procedures involved in obtaining visas to enter some of the countries on the tour took some time. Consequently it was advised to register early to guarantee a place on the tour.