Sampling success has helped PNG explorer Gold Mountain outline a string of new drill targets at its Mt Wipi prospect at its flagship Wabag project, with confidence growing in its copper-gold potential.
It is on the hunt for a porphyry monster in the valley of the giants known as the Papuan Mobile Belt, home to some of the world’s biggest gold and copper mines like Porgera, Grasberg and OK Tedi.
Chasing up promising early exploration results at Mt Wipi, including a rock chip samples containing up to 9.64% copper, 1.96 g/t gold and 100 g/t silver, Gold Mountain (ASX: GMN) has received assays for almost 400 of a total 550 soil samples.
Importantly, those samples have delivered “strong coherent coincident copper, molybdenum and gold in soil anomalies” at three locations, with four high priority drilling targets now in the books.
Spot highs of 0.294 per cent copper and 0.52g/t of gold were considered by the company to be ‘significant’.
Its porphyry expert Phil Jones, known for his involvement in exploration success at the North Parkes mine in NSW, points to the importance of the results of the soil sampling program.
“These initial soil sample results have shown that the Mt Wipi prospect hosts at least three areas of significantly anomalous and robust base metals, gold and porphyry pathfinder element geochemistry,” he said.
“These target areas lie immediately adjacent to strong copper/gold anomalism returned from previous rock chip and stream sediment sampling and are associated with a possible NW-SE structure evident in the airborne magnetic data.
“After successfully identifying these drill targets we are now planning to expand the soil sampling program over the Mt Wipi lease, especially to areas where we have recently collected rock chip samples that exhibit hydrothermally altered and sulphide mineralisation”.
One of many
Mt Wipi is one of three prospects on the leases once held under application by mining behemoth BHP that Gold Mountain has on its radar.
More advanced exploration has already taken place at Mongae and Monayal, where recent drilling uncovered a substantial 240m intercept containing 0.1 per cent copper and 88ppm molybdenum.
When you consider the whopping scale of some of the monsters on the PMB and the scale of Gold Mountain’s own holdings, it makes sense to cast a wide net to identify the potential across Wabag.
Significantly, three priority targets have been identified, with a drilling program comprising between five to 10 holes ranging from 1000m to 2500m in depth in the pipeline.
Life in the fast lane
This means the exploration program at Mt Wipi will be placed in the fast lane by Gold Mountain on the heels of a $2.5 million fundraising from investors.
“The presence of elevated gold and copper in the soil samples is very positive; this reinforces our previous work at Mt Wipi where we identified elevated copper and gold mineralisation in outcrops, stream sediment samples and channel samples that were all centered around a magnetic low feature,” chief executive Tim Cameron said.
“Phil Jones has also talked me through the significance of the trace element geochemistry that is associated with the copper and gold anomalies and this has encouraged me further.
“I have asked our field team to fast track the anomalies identified in the soil programme to drillable targets so that we can start drilling at Mt Wipi in June.”
This article was developed in collaboration with Gold Mountain, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.
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Barry Stroman was a reporter for Zerg Watch, before becoming the lead editor. Barry has previously worked for Wired, MacWorld, PCWorld, and VentureBeat covering countless stories concerning all things related to tech and science. Barry studied at NYU.