Nevada Exploration Inc. is pleased to report that the Scorpion sampling program at the Kelly Creek project is encountering significant enriched gold at the bedrock-alluvium contact.
The results of the Scorpion sampling program have established that the elevated gold and gold-associated trace-element geochemistry at Kelly Creek is consistent with the size and characteristics of the hydrothermal system associated with the nearby Marigold and Lone Tree gold deposits.
NGE’s Scorpion drill rig was custom-designed to provide low-cost, early-stage drilling for the purpose of collecting groundwater, alluvium, and bedrock geochemistry samples at NGE’s gold projects in Nevada’s highly-prospective and under-explored covered basins. Based on the results of the Scorpion sampling program at Kelly Creek, NGE is successfully using its Scorpion drill rig to vector in to bedrock-hosted mineralization that can now be followed with conventional exploration methods.
NGE has completed 53 Scorpion drill holes at Kelly Creek, totaling approximately 4,560 m (15,000 ft). The drill holes ranged in depth from 23 - 146 m (75 - 480 ft); and 38 of the 53 drill holes intersected bedrock. In addition to sampling alluvium and bedrock at 1.5 m (5 ft) intervals, NGE collected approximately 490 groundwater samples, generally at 9 m (30 ft) down-hole intervals. The Scorpion holes were focused along four fences across NGE’s primary targets defined by earlier, wider-spaced groundwater sampling on a regional structure known to control mineralization at the Marigold gold mine, as well as along four additional fences across parallel target areas. Hole spacing varied from 50 - 400 m (160 – 1,312 ft) along the fences, which were spaced between 150 - 1,000 m (490 - 3,280 ft) apart.
The results of Scorpion sampling at Kelly Creek confirm that the enriched gold in groundwater seen in earlier programs is now supported by elevated gold and related geochemistry in both alluvium and bedrock at depth, as well as increasing concentrations of gold in groundwater at depth. Together, the groundwater results define a hydrogeochemical plume of elevated gold and related elements measuring 2.2 km (1.4 mi) in strike length and 1.6 km (1 mi) in width, beneath 45 - 245 m (150 - 800 ft) of alluvial cover, which has now been closed off in one direction. The bedrock and alluvium sampling results within the hydrogeochemical plume have defined areas of significant enrichment of gold and related trace elements, including most significantly one drill hole containing 11 m (35 ft) averaging 0.095 ppm Au at the bedrock-alluvium contact from 111 - 120 m (365 - 400 ft), which included two 3 m (10 ft) intervals averaging 0.149 ppm Au and 0.120 ppm Au respectively, as well as shorter intervals at the bedrock-alluvium contact containing from 0.100 ppm Au to 0.153 ppm Au in six other drill holes.
By establishing the presence of bedrock-hosted material containing potentially ore-grade gold values with similar host rock, alteration, structural and geochemical characteristics to the orebodies associated with the Marigold (>8 Moz Au) and Lone Tree (>5 Moz Au) gold deposits, NGE believes the Scorpion sampling results confirm that the hydrothermal system that generated both deposits was also active in the Kelly Creek project area, which is now under cover. Most importantly, based on the results of groundwater, alluvium, and bedrock sampling, NGE believes that the geochemical footprint at Kelly Creek is consistent in terms of size to suggest that the hydrothermal system was active at a similar scale as at Marigold and Lone Tree, and potentially associated with a similar volume of mineralized material.
Discussing the results, NGE’s CEO, Wade Hodges explains: “This is the next important milestone for NGE. We’ve followed up on the targets identified by our shallower groundwater sampling with deeper sampling using our new Scorpion drill rig, and we are successfully vectoring in to a mineralized system that has the scale to be associated with a Tier 1 gold deposit. Our process is working, and we are now well positioned to proceed with conventional step-out drilling to follow the mineralization at the bedrock-alluvium contact, which remains open in several directions including at depth, as well as to continue the broader program to the north. We are pioneering the use of low-cost drilling to systematically model 3D groundwater and alluvium geochemistry to explore in covered settings. By deliberately varying our drill hole spacing, we are establishing the appropriate sampling density to provide the up-until-now missing scale of information to transition from regional-scale exploration to project-scale drilling based on the distribution of gold and related elements in each sampling medium. With this knowledge, we are improving our workflow to most effectively deploy our Scorpion drill rig, and we look forward to leveraging this experience as we continue to drill at Kelly Creek and our other Nevada projects.”