Mining Explorers 2009: Prospects pan out at White Gold
Underworld delivers strong 2009 drilling results on red-hot Yukon property
Last updated 11/1/2009 at Noon
Underworld Resources Inc. hit the ground running in 2009, reporting impressive assay results in the first three holes of its drilling program at its White Gold Project in late May.
For two field seasons, the Vancouver, B.C.-based company has explored sediment and vein-hosted gold targets on 845 claims covering 169 square kilometers, or 65.3 square miles, on the White Gold and Black Fox gold Properties in west-central Yukon Territory, 95 kilometers, or about 60 miles, south of Dawson City.
So far, the junior has identified substantial gold mineralization and doubled its claims in the area.
Underworld closed several private placements that generated C$16.55 million in gross proceeds and gave Kinross Gold Corp. an 11 percent stake in its outstanding shares.
Deep gold-silver at Golden Saddle
In June, the busy junior churned out more drill results for one of the three holes, this time identifying deeper gold mineralization that is also rich in silver. Underworld reported discovery of the new, deep gold-silver-rich zone down hole from the earlier drill results. The junior said hole WD09-31 returned 10.5 meters averaging 4.8 g/t gold and 38.2 g/t silver, starting at 401.5 meters within a breccia zone underlying the Golden Saddle Zone.
The deep breccia zone within hole WD09-31 occurs from 401.5 to 412.0 meters and includes 9.40 g/t gold and 73.3 g/t silver over 3.4 meters, underlying the upper zone in this hole. The mineralization is hosted in a milled hydrothermal breccia with interstitial pyrite and specular hematite.
"We could have tapped into a sizable ore body, rather than a narrow vein. The new structure is brecciated, which is another indication of the system's potential," Underworld Chairman Michael Williams told Mining News. "In political terms, the deposit has legs."
Underworld said its drillers lost hole WD09-31 at 414.8 meters due to depth limits of the diamond drills currently in use at Golden Saddle. The company will bring a more powerful drill rig to the site to test the new zone to greater depth.
100 meters of 3.13 grams per metric ton gold
As the 2009 season progressed, Underworld's hunt at the White Gold Project yielded more encouraging results. The company completed the 115-hole program in September with 25,670 meters drilled. The objective of the program was to expand the gold discoveries made by the 2008 drill program and to complete an NI 43-101-compliant resource estimate.
Among other highlights of the 2009 program:
WD09-47: 31.1 meters averaging 9.20 g/t Au
WD09-64: 100.4 meters averaging 3.13 g/t Au
WD09-69: 76.9 meters averaging 3.40 g/t Au
WD09-72: 49.5 meters averaging 3.49 g/t Au
WD09-74: 112 meters averaging 1.94 g/t Au
WD09-78: 44.5 meters averaging 4.3 g/t Au
WD09-80: 10.0 meters averaging 8.93 g/t Au
Sixty holes were drilled at Golden Saddle and 19 holes at Arc Zone.
Priorities for the 2009 program were expansion and further definition of the Golden Saddle Zone. The recent drilling has already expanded Golden Saddle down dip to the north, further along strike to the east and to depth. Golden Saddle remains open along strike and down dip to depth. Recent drilling has also demonstrated deeper seated mineralization at Golden Saddle with potentially economic silver credits. Additional drilling has been carried out at the Arc zone.
It's a wonderful Underworld
Underworld is focused on expanding its new gold discovery in Yukon. The junior acquired an option over the White Gold properties in May 2007. First drilling was completed in 2008 with discoveries at Golden Saddle and Arc. The two zones are exposed at surface, open at depth and along strike.
The junior said its 2009 drilling results continue to demonstrate excellent continuity of near-surface gold mineralization in the Golden Saddle zone. The deposit remains open to expansion to the east and north.
The company is also targeting near-surface mineralization potentially amenable to open-pit mining. It is also drilling regional targets at the South Donahue and McKinnon showings located 4 and 6 kilometers southeast of Golden Saddle, respectively.
The junior also reported significantly expanding its land position in the White Gold District through acquisition and additional staking. The majority of the new ground is contiguous with the original claim group hosting the Golden Saddle and Arc gold discoveries. Underworld now holds title to or has title pending on 2,907 quartz mining claims for an aggregate area of 589 square kilometers, or 227.4 square miles.
Full-on staking rush
News of Underworld's drilling results touched off a staking rush to this underexplored region of the Dawson Range last spring. Nearly 30 exploration companies have descended on the area, staking more than 8,000 new claims in 2009 and grabbing up properties, and the numbers are growing.
Well-established contenders such as ATAC Resources Ltd., Strategic Metals Ltd., Kaminak Gold Corp., Northgate Minerals Corp. and Pacific Ridge Exploration Ltd. joined newcomers, including MPH Ventures Corp, Ashburton Ventures Inc., Cloudbreak Resources, Alix Resources Corp., Alder Resources Ltd., Cariboo Rose, Rimfire Minerals Corp., Anglo Canadian Uranium Corp., Aldrin Resource Corp., Radius Gold Inc., and Habanero Resources Inc. in the stampede.