Canadian company Pitchblack Resources has signed an agreement with Crocodile Gold Corp for the option to acquire a 90% interest in mineral tenements in the Northern Territory of Australia, including the Iron Blow and Mount Bonnie prospects. The tenements were chosen for the potential to host base metal deposits with several possibilities of hosting significant gold mineralization.
Pitchblack’s president and CEO John Taggart says, “The signing of definitive documentation in respect of the acquisition of these prospective base metal and precious metal assets is the first major milestone in achieving our goal of building a diversified, long-term, low-cost metals producer.
“We plan to work diligently over the coming months to further advance the Iron Blow and Mount Bonnie deposits, where historical resources are defined and limited past production has occurred. I am particularly excited about the base metal potential opportunities we have at Maud Creek, but our initial focus is the Iron Blow and Mount Bonnie base metal deposits where we believe we can build towards commercial production in the future.”
Management believes that the Iron Blow deposit is a well-defined precious metal enriched base metal system within a volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) geological setting similar in character to Hecla's Greens Creek deposit in Alaska.
Recent drill intersections have defined 13.0% lead+zinc, 0.28% copper, 448 grams/tonne silver and 3.66 grams/tonne gold over 46.2 metres, and 17.4% lead+zinc, 0.6% copper, 492 grams/tonne silver and 6.03 grams/tonne gold over 19.8 metres. Historically, the Iron Blow Mine previously produced 35,000 tonnes grading 7.57 grams/tonne gold and 328.6 grams/tonne silver.
An NI 43-101 compliant technical report on the Northern Territory gold and base metals properties of Crocodile Gold, dated April 4, 2011, included the following inferred resource for Iron Blow - 3.175 million tonnes @ 3.28% zinc for 229.75 million pounds, 0.76% lead for 53.163 million pounds, 101 grams/tonne silver for 10.3 million ounces, 2.1 grams/tonne gold for 214,000 ounces and 0.19% copper for 13.299 million pounds.
At Mount Bonnie drilling results from a campaign in 2008 show intersections of 16.32% lead+zinc, 0.56% copper, 296.9 grams/tonnes silver and 2.49 grams/tonne gold over 9.3 metres. From a historical standpoint, the Mount Bonnie deposit is a past oxide/supergene mine which previously produced 110,000 tonnes grading 7 grams/tonne gold and 230 grams/tonne silver.
An historic inferred mineral resource for the Mount Bonnie deposit indicates 650,000 tonnes @ 9.0% zinc for 128.97 million pounds, 2.0% lead for 28.66 million pounds, 279 grams/tonne silver for 5.83 million ounces, 1.7 grams/tonne gold for 35,500 ounces and 0.50% copper for 7.165 million pounds.
Other tenements being acquired by Pitchblack are Maud Creek, Mount Evelyn, Mount Ellison, Yeuralba (Eva Valley) and Bons Rush East.
Exploration work in 2013 will focus on extending and validating the high-grade zones at Iron Blow and Mount Bonnie. Pitchblack envisions a two-stage exploration program with additional drilling on Iron Blow and Mount Bonnie being a priority. The goal is to produce resource estimates on both deposits. Before additional drilling is undertaken, geochemical sampling, detailed mapping and additional geophysical interpretations will be carried out.