Vancouver – Deep drilling by Stikine Gold (SKY-V) at its Sullivan Deeps project, located just 4 km. north and across the Kimberley Fault from the legendary Sullivan lead-zinc mine in southeastern British Columbia, has intersected an important geological marker horizon.
Drilling, which commenced in April, has passed 2,000 metres depth and intersected the “Hiawatha Marker” horizon, a significant geological marker that is known to lie about 450 metres above the Sullivan mineralized horizon.
Stikine Gold, who have an option to earn 50% interest in Sullivan North from Teck Cominco (TEK-T), is spending millions on its exploration program, pursuing the long sought after “sister” or extension of the Sullivan mine orebody within the north-south corridor.
Mineralization has long been hypothesized to continue across the east-west cutting Kimberley Fault, however it is offset substantially downwards through the drop movement along the fault structure.
Cominco drilled a deep hole, well over 2,000 metres, on the target in 1996 but failed to intersect any significant mineralization. It is hypothesized that the hole was spotted too far towards the west. Subsequent downhole geophysics identified a 3 sq. km. conductive anomaly, larger than that of the Sullivan orebody, presently being drilled as Stikine’s deep target.
The Sullivan Mine operated for almost a century until its closure in late-2001. It was one of the richest and largest lead-zinc producers in the world having life-of-mine output of over 18 billion pounds of lead and over 17 billion pounds of zinc, along with amounts of silver, tin and copper. The operation produced over $20 billion in metals.
Lead-zinc mineralization at Sullivan is sedimentary exhalative (sedex) in origin and was deposited within a sub-basin structure. It occurs within a mineralized corridor of feeder zones that hosted a number of sedex deposits that also included the Stemwinder and North Star mines.
Geology within the Sullivan sequence tends to be fairly consistent with specific banded sedimentary “marker” horizons that indicate stratigraphic location with the basin. These markers aid in spotting ones location within the sedimentary sequence and the distance to the mineralized “Sullivan-ore” horizon.
Stikine Gold has captured investor’s imagination in its hunt for the Sullivan extension. The issue rallied on the news, up almost 35% or 9.5, to close at 37 per share on volume of over 944,000 shares. As of the latest figures, the company reports 20.5 million shares outstanding.