Kinsley Mountain is a Carlin style, sediment-hosted gold property located south of Newmont Mining’s Long Canyon deposit along the Long Canyon Trend, with a stratigraphy, structure and mineralization-style common to other sediment-hosted gold systems in northeast Nevada1. The property hosts a past-producing mine with an extensive exploration database and numerous, untested gold targets.
Located in one of the best mining jurisdictions in the world
The Kinsley Mountain property is located in southeast Elko County, Nevada, approximately 90 kilometers from Long Canyon. In September 2011, Pilot Gold purchased the option to earn a controlling interest in the Kinsley Mountain property. The property hosts a past producing mine, historic resources2 and numerous untested targets within an extensive land package.
Majority owner and operator
Pilot Gold has a 65% interest in Kinsley Mountain and is project operator. Intor Resources, a subsidiary of Nevada Sunrise Gold Corporation, owns the remaining 35%.
Strong geology in established area
The Kinsley property consists of 332 claims and 6,572 acres (2,659 hectares) on BLM land. Gold mineralization was discovered on Kinsley Mountain in 1984, and subsequent exploration defined sediment-hosted gold mineralization concentrated in the Kinsley Trend, including at least five zones hosted in strata ranging from Middle to Late Cambrian in age. The stratigraphic intervals hosting mineralization at Kinsley include one of the same horizons that host mineralization at Long Canyon.
Past producing mine
Between 1994 and 1999, Alta Gold Co. reportedly produced approximately 138,000 ounces of gold at an average grade of 1.4 g/t gold from oxide ore in a heap leach operation. Alta Gold abandoned the mine and left an undetermined amount of ore in the ground during a period of low gold prices. At that time, gold discoveries were still being made and existing historic resources had not been exhausted. In addition to the shallow oxide mineralization, several deeper zones of sulfide mineralization that were encountered in drilling were not followed up on.
Our focus today
Our exploration strategy is focused on detailed geologic analysis, aggressive drilling and deposit modeling. In 2013, we submitted an application to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management for a Plan of Operations which will allow for expanded exploration activities in the southern third of the property beyond previously disturbed areas. While we await permit approval, we continue to complete target generation and data analysis activities as we prepare for the next phase of exploration on the property.
1 There are no assurances that the geological similarities to Newmont Mining’s Long Canyon project or other project along the Long Canyon Trend, will result in the establishment of any resource estimates at Kinsley, or that the Kinsley Project can be advanced in a similar timeframe. Kinsley Mountain is an early stage development project without any current resource estimates and there is no certainty that any such resource estimates will ever be established.
2 Pilot Gold is not treating the historical estimate as current mineral resources or mineral reserves, as defined in sections 1.2 and 1.3 of NI43-101. A qualified person has not done sufficient work to classify the historical resource estimate as current mineral resources or mineral reserves, and thus the historical estimate should not be relied on.
Regional and property geology
The Kinsley Property is located in eastern Nevada near the Utah border, in the eastern portion of the Basin and Range physiographic province. The region is primarily underlain by carbonate and siliciclastic strata ranging from Late Proterozoic to Late Paleozoic in age, reflecting rifting and subsequent passive margin sedimentation with episodic shallowing over time. Strata were thrust imbricated, folded and metamorphosed during the Jurassic Elko Orogeny, during which felsic to intermediate plutonic rocks were emplaced. The Tertiary is dominated by extensional tectonics, manifested as low-angle normal faulting, felsic volcanism and gold mineralization during the Early to middle Tertiary and high-angle, basin-and-range style normal faulting ranging from Miocene to Recent.
Sedimentary rocks on the Kinsley Property range primarily from Middle Cambrian to Late Ordovician in age, and reflect episodic shallowing of the continental shelf from shelf margin through middle shelf/sabkha environments. Important units include the Upper Cambrian Lamb Dolomite, Candland Shale and Notch Peak Formation, and the Lower Ordovician Pogonip Group silty limestone and Eureka Quartzite. By analogy with the Long Canyon area 75 km to the north, competent units such as the Lamb Dolomite and Eureka Quartzite might be expected to behave as structural and hydrologic buttresses for less competent and more favourable host rocks such as the Candland Shale and lower Pogonip Group. The Candland Shale is the principal host for gold mineralization discovered to date on the Kinsley Property.
Strata in the Kinsley Mountain area were ductily deformed during Jurassic time, the extent to which has not been thoroughly evaluated. During Eocene time, a northwest-trending wrench fault system was developed across the property. This fault system provided the plumbing which introduced mineralizing fluids into the Candland Shale. Mineralization is sediment-hosted in nature, and is believed to be of similar age (approximately 38 Ma) to mineralization in the Carlin Trend. Despite being a “Carlin look-alike”, some differences do exist, including a strong correlation of gold with tellurium and bismuth, an association not usually associated with Carlin-type deposits and more typical of intrusion-related distal-disseminated gold deposits.
Surface and near-surface alteration includes decalcification and iron oxide alteration (primarily limonite, goethite and rare hematite). Some scorodite is present locally, as well as structurally- and stratigraphically-controlled jasperoids lenses. At depths below approximately 70 metres, sulphide mineralization is present, consisting of variably siliceous, decalcified and carbonaceous rock with disseminated, very fine-grained pyrite and arsenical pyrite. All of the above alteration types contain gold as very fined-grained particles in the lattice of arsenical pyrite grains or oxidized equivalents.
Click on the thumbnails below to veiw geology graphics of Kinsley.
In 2012, Pilot Gold completed a 12,000 metre infill and step-out core and RC drill program, designed to define and expand the mineralized zones identified by previous operators. In conjunction with drilling, a comprehensive regional effort to identify new targets was completed, including new staking to the north in a largely unexplored area. Through this work, a new mineralized zone was intersected in drilling (Candland Canyon) and the Western Flank Zone has been expanded to now cover an area 600 metres by 100 metres. Drill highlights from the 2012 program include:
- 6.03 g/t gold over 13.7 metres in hole PK061, including 15.18 g/t gold over 4.6 metres;
- 5.48 g/t gold over 20.4 metres in hole PK014C, including 16.43 g/t gold over 5.5 metres; and
- 2.30 g/t gold over 19.8 metres in hole PK057.
For a table of drill results to date, including non-reportable intercepts, please click here.
A three-dimensional model of geology and mineralization was created in order to aid in the selection of new, high-grade drill targets. Surface soil and rock samples show anomalous pathfinder geochemistry and alteration extending seven kilometres to the north of the historic open pits, consistent with the presence of a large mineralized system.
The 2013 work program at Kinsley anticipates 22,000 metres of core and RC drilling designed to establish an initial resource estimate for areas under, and adjacent to, the historic pits, and to test priority exploration targets on flanking and outlying areas. The 2013 work program also includes preliminary metallurgical, engineering and related studies.