Navarre Minerals has discovered a new gold zone while undertaking a shallow drilling program for copper at its Eclipse prospect located near Cherrypool, sixty kilometres south of Horsham.
The discovery of gold was an added bonus for the Stawell-based mineral exploration company, with the drilling program originally designed to target shallow copper above a deeper porphyry target. Assay results at hand from the drilling program show gold up to 3.3 grams of gold per tonne occurring next to shallow copper mineralisation grading up to 2.8 percent copper.
Navarre Minerals' drilling program is follow-up to three targets recently uncovered with a geophysics survey completed in December 2013.
"One is a porphyry target located 300 to 400 metres below the surface," Navarre Minerals Managing Director, Geoff McDermott said.
"The other two (one is fairly shallow, the other a bit deeper), we believe are gold and base metal targets often found in association with porphyry copper deposits.
"Like the big copper and gold mines in Orange, central New South Wales and those found in Chile, porphyry deposits can be extremely large and can employ several hundred to a thousand people.
"These are mines that go for decades, not just a few years and will add value to the region."
The new gold zone, located on the edge of copper mineralisation, has one hole spanning 66 metres which is completely mineralised with gold over its entire length.
Planning for a follow-up drilling program to scope the gold potential is now underway.
Navarre Minerals has also been buoyed by other results from the drilling program.
A secondary copper (known as chalcocite) blanket starting at 30 metres below surface has been confirmed and the next stage is to find its extents and to use it as a pathway towards a deeper porphyry-copper prize.
"Most of the previous shallow drilling at Eclipse was not deep enough to intersect the copper blanket. .
"There remains a large area of copper potential that hasn't been effectively tested," Mr McDermott said.
"We will chase the extents of this copper and follow it at depth hoping that it may lead us to the primary source of the copper mineralisation, porphyry copper."
Navarre Minerals is encouraged by the Eclipse prospects potential to contain a porphyry copper and the high grade of the assay results received to date.
The Cherrypool drilling program also gives Navarre Minerals hope of finding more porphyry copper mineralisation within the southern extension of the Miga Arc at its Lexington, Pollockdale and Glenlyle prospects located near Glenthompson.
"Navarre Minerals is now waiting on one more batch of assay results to guide its follow-up drill planning," Mr McDermott said.
"We believe it is just a matter of time and perseverance until the emerging Miga Arc copper belt offers up a large mineral deposit."