ASX-listed junior explorer Askari Metals has undertaken an initial field reconnaissance program at its historical Burracoppin gold project about 20km east of Merredin in WA’s eastern Wheatbelt region prior to its planned inaugural reverse circulation drilling program kicking off next week.
The Perth-based company says during the recently completed reconnaissance work several old shallow artisanal mining shafts that are prevalent along an interpreted strike length of about 1.6km were given a once-over.
Proposed collar locations of the RC drill holes were also set as part of the reconnaissance program.
Burracoppin has been the scene of recorded historical gold production at four main shafts – called Christmas Gift, North Benbur, Benbur and Easter Gift – that occur along the 1.6km-long north-south trend.
Benbur ore yielded an eye-watering average grade of 37.44 grams per tonne gold.
The company aims to punch out about 2,000m in its maiden round of RC drilling as it looks to follow up on a clutch of past high-grade drill hits and get a handle on mineralisation below the line of artisanal gold workings that it says have only been partially tested.
Some of the tantalising historical drill intersections from Burracoppin have included 18m grading an average 5.64 g/t gold from surface, 14m at 13.7 g/t from 32m and 2m at 9.1 g/t from 18m.
In addition, prior rock chip samples have returned bonanza values at the project including 71.39 g/t, 63.97 g/t, 63.15 g/t, 41.88 g/t, 29.7 g/t and 15.1 g/t.
The shallow shafts within the Burracoppin project area were sunk on high-grade gold veins in the 1930s.
Burracoppin, underlain by poorly exposed Archaean granite-greenstone terrane that contains isolated occurrences of banded iron formation, was also the site of a small heap leach operation in the early 1990s.
According to Geological Survey of WA archives, the shafts were developed over gold-bearing quartz veins, which generally packed a punch at more than 0.5 ounces to the tonne gold.
Clearly there is something feeding these shallow workings and our planned drilling program is designed to test the plunge and down-dip extensions of this mineralisation.
Burracoppin sits about 25km south-west of ASX-listed $1.4 billion market-cap gold producer Ramelius Resources’ Edna May gold mine, which has topped one million ounces in recorded production and churned out 26,632 ounces in the June quarter this year.
Gold market watchers will be keeping a close eye on the early drill results from Askari’s first drilling foray at Burracoppin for any signs of a mineralised system that has the potential to be bigger than Benbur.
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