Precious metal mineralization on the property is hosted in quartz breccias, quartz veins and associated stock work around breccia zones within an envelope of quartz-sericite-pyrite alteration. Gold mineralization is generally associated with silicification and various amounts of base metals in particular lead and zinc. The principal gold mineral is silver rich electrum while the base metals occur in galena and sphalerite. The base metal rich zones also contain argentite and freibergite as the main silver bearing minerals. Some mineralized zones contain only gold and silver without a significant base metal component while other zones are rich in both precious and base metals forming semi-massive to massive sulfide mineralization. The style of alteration and the metal composition suggest that the mineralization falls into the intermediate sulfidation type of epithermal deposits.
The quartz breccias typically form laterally extensive low grade (<1g/t Au) zones that can be traced for kilometres along strike and that range in thickness from a several metres to >60m. The quartz breccias appear to underlay a large part of the property with a more or less horizontal orientation. However, in the Premier and Northern Lights areas significant portions of the quartz breccia zones are steeply dipping at surface and flatten out at depth, following a bowl shape geometry.
Within these broadly mineralized envelopes of quartz breccia, there are smaller pods of higher grade mineralization (>5g/t Au) that typically occur in sets of low and high angle to the general orientation of the quartz breccia. These areas are most likely localized dilatant zones within the breccia zones where conditions triggered accelerated precipitation of precious and base metals, generating the high-grade lenses. The thickness of the high-grade pods varies from 2->20m and individual zones can be traced for >100m.
While the low grade envelope is an excellent target for open pit bulk mining in areas where the breccia zones are horizontal and near surface (e.g. Big Missouri), it is these high-grade pods that provide an attractive target for selective underground mining, regardless of the orientation and depth of the targeted breccia zone.