The Ferguson Mountain project contains an untested Carlin-type gold target in the underexplored platform carbonate environment of eastern Nevada. Exploration for this type of deposit in the platform carbonates requires diligent analysis of the subtle clues that may be present. Leakage of gold and Carlin-type pathfinder elements occurs along tight structures above target areas, and sampling by Kinetic Gold indicates that leakage anomalies are widespread on the property. The project area contains significant structural complexity and multiple favorable structural and stratigraphic environments for the occurrence of a significant gold deposit. These include high- and low-angle structures, a broad north-northwest striking anticline, and favorable stratigraphic traps, including development of hematitic solution/collapse breccias. A detailed analysis of the geochemical patterns and integration with our detailed mapping and geological interpretation provide the basis for the first drill targets for a concealed Carlin-type gold deposit at Ferguson Mountain.
Location and Claims
The Ferguson Mountain project comprises 75 unpatented lode claims about 23 miles south of the town of Wendover in Elko County, Nevada. Kinetic Gold controls a 100% interest in the claims. The project lies within the historic Ferguson Spring (Allegheny) District, which has had intermittent production of copper, with lesser amounts of silver and lead, and minor gold. No drilling has been carried out on the property.
The property is underlain by Devonian to Permian stratigraphy, including thick sequences of platform carbonates and lesser foreland basin clastic rocks. Multiple intrusive phases have been identified on the property, which have caused local contact metamorphism of the adjacent country rocks and are the likely source of copper mineralization on the property. The area is structurally complex, with numerous high angle faults, complex folding and thrusting relationships, and a regionally recognized low-angle detachment fault. In addition, extensive dissolution and collapse breccias with local areas of intense hematitic alteration (terra rossa) are developed, providing a very attractive environment for sediment-hosted gold deposits. Alteration observed at Ferguson Mountain is variable and includes contact metamorphic (hornfels/marble) aureoles in carbonates surrounding exposed and blind intrusions, propylitic, phyllic and argillic alteration within multiple intrusive phases, and subtle alteration in the carbonate package (dolomitization, decalcification and silicification). Near structures, the alteration is intense and is represented by fault- and fracture-controlled decalcification and silicification. These silicified zones contain brecciated jasperoid with multiple pulses of silicification and punky domains of hematite and goethite stockworks. In some examples, malachite and azurite are recognizable, and locally As-oxides (e.g. scorodite) are minor constitutents. These silicified zones are related to the highest Au values observed at Ferguson. Alteration within igneous rocks is common and ranges from weak to intermediate propylitic alteration to strong argillic alteration in the intermediate to felsic intrusions.
Kinetic Gold has collected 142 rock chip samples with maximum values of 437 ppb Au, 26.7 ppm Ag, 8220 ppm As, 835 ppm Sb, and 13 ppm Hg. Copper, lead, and zinc are also somewhat enriched, with maximum values of 17,100 ppm Cu, 1000 ppm Pb, and 4528 ppm Zn. The Company has also collected 380 soil samples on a 140m grid covering the entire claim block, as well as along two tightly spaced (20 ft) profiles. Results from these soil surveys indicate that gold and Carlin-type pathfinder elements are enriched along mapped structures and favorable structural and stratigraphic intersections. The tightly spaced soil lines have produced significantly higher gold and pathfinder element values that are interpreted as leakage anomalies occurring along fractures and variably healed fault zones.
Drill targets are defined based on proximity of key geologic indicators. The first priority indicator is geochemical leakage of gold, silver and arsenic, occurring along mapped structures. The intersection of these high-angle structural leakage zones with several favorable low-angle structural and stratigraphic traps forms the basis of the drill targets. Favorable structural traps include a low angle detachment fault surface, and structural contacts between the Mississippian-Devonian units and the underlying Devonian limestones. Favorable startigraphic traps include the dissolution and collapse breccias at the top of the Devonian section, and areas where shale structurally overlies Devonian carbonates.
Maps and Figures
Ferguson Geologyclick on image to enlarge
Cross sections illustrating drill targets:
A: Intersection of NE mineralized fault and low-angle detachment fault
B: Intersection of NE mineralized fault zone and low angle structure at base of Mississippian section
C: Intersection of NE fault zone and solution collapse breccias at the top of Devonian section
D: Intersection of EW mineralized graben fault and low-angle detachment
E: Intersection of EW graben fault and low-angle structural contact
F: Shale cap over Devonian carbonate section on flank of anticline
G: NE structures in Devonian carbonates