The Mt Maguire Gold Project is comprised of three exploration licenses: 47/4170, 52/3718, and 52/3719. The tenements E52/3718 and 52/3719 were granted on the 31st of May 2019. Tenement E 47/4170 is pending at the application stage.
The area of the project is 13 BL (42 km2). The town of Paraburdoo is located approximately 10km to the north, while Newman is around 200km to the east. Access is by station tracks from the Nanutarra-Wittenoom Road.
The project is located within the Pilbara Craton. The tenements lie on the northern margin of the Ashburton Trough, known as the Paraburdoo Hinge Zone. Locally, the northern half of the tenement is dominated by Cainozoic cover sequences, predominantly thick iron-rich detrital sequences derived by erosion of the Hamersley Group rocks to the north. The southwestern portion of the tenement is underlain by Lower Wyloo Group rocks of the Mt McGrath Formation, with minor Beasley Quartzite mapped and several small exposures mapped as Brockman Iron Formation.
The Mt Maguire Project is located along strike from Kalamazoo’s (ASX: KZR) Ashburton Project. The gold mineralisation at the Guinness Prospect is interpreted as being controlled by an east west-striking fault that dips to the north. Post mineralisation faulting has caused the mineralised zone to plunge to west in a series of tilted blocks. In the area of interest, there is a 20-70-metre-wide alteration zone of surface silicification and bleaching. The eastern and western strike length extensions of the Guinness Prospect remain untested. Sulphides and silification are important to mineralisation but the exact style of mineralisation has not been determined due to a lack of geochemical data and fresh drill cuttings.
The tenements lie on the northern margin of the Ashburton Trough, known as the Paraburdoo Hinge Zone. This was a zone of syndepositional instability in the early Proterozoic separating the dominantly clastic Wyloo Group, which includes the Duck Creek Dolomite from the dominantly chemical sediments of the underlying Hamersley Group, extensively developed to the north. The region contains major growth faults, parallel to the shelf margin, and numerous N-S cross-cutting features.
The northeast margin of the Ashburton Fold Belt of the Capricorn Orogen comprises a major zone of variably deformed and metamorphosed supracrustal rocks formed during a continental collision between the Pilbara and Yilgarn Cratons. The main structural elements are east-southeast to south trending faults, including the Nanjilgardy Fault. BP Minerals’ structural mapping near the Neerambah Springs area concluded that the upper Hamersley Group, Turee Creek Group, and lower Wyloo Group formed a nappe that had been thrust over the Duck Creek Dolomite and has itself been overthrust by the Duck Creek Dolomite and Ashburton Formation.
In general, the region conforms to the regional northwest to northerly trend with the underlying geological units being of the Proterozoic Hamersley, Turee Creek and Wyloo Groups. The units present in the project area include the Weeli Wolli Formation of the Hamersley Group through to the Ashburton Formation of the Wyloo Group.
Later in the Proterozoic compressional tectonics resulted in the trough sediments being intensely folded and thrust faulted resulting in the development of the Ashburton Fold Belt.
The project geological succession (from the bottom) comprises:
The Wyloo Group of the Ashburton Formation is interpreted to have been deposited in the foreland of the Pilbara Craton during the closure of the Yilgarn‐Pilbara basin. A major dextral transcurrent fault system (including the Nanjilgardy Fault) affects both Wyloo Group and older rocks.
The Wyloo Group rocks are unconformably overlain by the Capricorn Formation (siliciclastics and minor volcaniclastics deposited in restricted basins) and younger Bresnahan Group (conglomerate, sandstone, siltstone). Areas of Cainozoic calcrete (Czk), colluvium (Czc), and younger Quaternary cover (Qa, Qc) are widespread.
The Wyloo Group:
Locally, the northern half of the tenement is dominated by Cainozoic cover sequences, predominantly thick iron-rich detrital sequences derived by erosion of the Hamersley Group rocks to the north. The detritals form sheet to wedge-shaped lobes and fans thickening away from the uplands. Incision of the piedmont deposits has produced a marked dendritic drainage pattern. The southwestern portion of the tenement is underlain by Lower Wyloo Group rocks of the Mt McGrath Formation, with minor Beasley Quartzite mapped and several small exposures mapped as Brockman Iron Formation.
The northern extremity of the tenement encroaches on the edge of the prominent range formed by the Hamersley Group and covers outcrop of Weeli Wolli Formation. The substantial bedded iron ore deposits at Paraburdoo, Eastern Range and Channar lie just to the north, whilst the Wyloo Group hosted Paraburdoo gold deposits (Mt Olympus, Zeus, Waugh etc) lie to the southeast.
Components of the Lower Proterozoic Wyloo Group recognised on the tenements are Beasley River Quartzite (relatively minor quartzites), Mount McGrath Formation (mainly hematitic clastic sediments with minor dolomite), Duck Creek Dolomite (mainly dolomite with lesser argillite) and Ashburton Formation (micaceous arenites and argillites with a characteristic foliation).
Duricrust – predominantly calcretes and silcretes with lesser ferricretes – are developed extensively mainly (but not exclusively) over Duck Creek Dolomite.
Most gold in the Ashburton region was thought to occur in small quartz veins in the Ashburton Formation and associated alluvial and eluvial concentrations. However, stratiform syngenetic gold and silver deposits (accompanied by arsenic, copper, bismuth, antimony, and lead). The Main and the Eastern Prospects are of this style of mineralisation as is the Mount Olympus Mine, discovered in 1996.
The Paulsen Gold Mine is about 8 km north northeast. Here the auriferous quartz veins cut across the basalt and sandstone of the Mount Jope Volcanics, which are part of the Fortescue Group. Mineralisation occurs within the veins and the host rock.
The Belvedere Group, northeast, contains gold, copper, lead and silver mineralisation in two sets of quartz veins. One set strikes north and dips west; the other trends northeast parallel to a fault, which displaces the first set. The veins are hosted in the Fortescue Group, which includes mafic, felsic volcanic rocks and sandstone.
At the Monster Lode Mine, old workings are located 1.6 km from the Wyloo Homestead. The quartz veins occur in the Marra Mamba Iron Formation close to the unconformity with the Mount McGrath Formation. The veins are parallel to bedding, striking at 305 degrees. The gold mineralisation occurs in vughs of oxidized arsenopyrite with quartz veins.
The Xanadu Mine is hosted in a sequence of siltstones and cherts lying between dolomite horizons. Mineralisation occurs mostly with the purple or yellow siltstones, with pseudomorphs of disseminated pyrite occasionally present. The mine was a cyanide heap leach operation, which was closed in 1996 by Nugold Hill Mines NL.
At the Mount Olympus Mine, mineralisation occurs in altered siltstone, dolomites, quartzites, sandstones and conglomerates cut by quartz veins and stringers over a strike length of 700m. Mt Olympus is genetically related to regional thrust faulting. Mt Olympus is currently being mined and is the largest gold mine in the local area.
Within the region, there are a few small lead and silver deposits including the Silent Sisters Mine, Arial Mine and the North Kooline deposit. Most of the mineralisation is associated with quartz veins, faults or both.
The project is situated immediately south of Rio Tinto’s Paraburdoo Iron Ore operations, which together produce approximately 23 million tonnes per annum of DSO from the Paraburdoo, Channar and Eastern Range mining centres.
Significant gold exploration in the areas within and around the project area commenced in early 1988 with a programme by BP Minerals Australia. This programme comprised a stream sediment BLEG sampling with 171 samples being collected and analysed for gold.
During the 2008-2009 period, Murchison Metals and AMEX Resources were exploring the area and conducted rock chip sampling on the Mt Maguire project. Some of the rock chip sample taken on the current Mt Maguire project showed prospective results for Iron (Fe).
From 2003 to 2004, Sunrise Exploration conducted a detailed mapping, rock chip sampling and RAB drilling programme over the current project. Challenge drilling carried out the drilling using a small 4WD RAB rig. The RAB drilling program was designed to test anomalies in a gold zone over a northwest-trending structure that had been previously drilled. The drilling results at the main “Guinness” prospect showed that an anomalous zone of gold mineralisation exists at shallow depths.
Significant results include:
There is insufficient information at this time to determine the true width of the mineralisation. Details of the drill collar location and significant results (minimum 1m with >1 Au) is included in Appendix E of the Independent Geologist’s Report contained in Annexure A.
The Pilbara region has seen a renewed focus on gold exploration due to the recent world-class Hemi oxide/sulphide gold discovery by De Grey Mining Limited (ASX: DEG). This has been complemented by major gold development progress by Calidus Resources Limited (ASX: CAI) at the 1.25Moz Warrawoona Project and Capricorn Metals Limited (ASX: CMM) at the 2.1Moz Karlawinda Project.
The Mt Maguire Project is along strike from Kalamazoo’s (ASX: KZR) Ashburton Project. The Kalamazoo Project has historical production of 350,00oz Au from 1998 until 2004 and contains a mineral reserve estimate (JORC 2012) of 20.8Mt @ 2.5g/t Au for 1.65Moz.
Proposed Exploration Program
Exploration at the Mt Maguire project is two-fold. Firstly, the Company plans on undertaking some additional drilling in and around the historic drilling to test the depth extent of the mineralisation and extend the strike of the known mineralisation.
In addition, the Company plans to identify additional gold, copper and base metal mineralisation throughout the Mt Maguire project through the use of soil surveys and geophysical surveys. Askari Metals will then undertake additional reconnaissance exploration and regional exploration at the Mt Maguire project to delineate additional priority targets. Askari Metals intends to utilise these exploration methods and if any additional soil and/or geophysical anomalies and targets are generated follow them up with exploration drilling.