Drills extend Amethyst gold vein at Aquila
New gold zone emerges as priority exploration target at Unga North of 60 Mining News – September 24, 2021
Last updated 9/23/2021 at 4:24pm
Heliostar Metals Ltd. Sept. 20 reported that drilling has further expanded gold mineralization at the Aquila target on the company's Unga project in Southwest Alaska.
Aquilla is a zone of outcropping epithermal quartz veins at the southwest end of the Shumagin trend, one of two corridors of gold and silver mineralization running across the breadth of Unga Island, discovered by Battle Mountain Gold in the 1980s. Drilling at that time, however, was limited by poor sample recoveries.
Heliostar, which revisited this underexplored target during the 2020 season, obtained better core recoveries with modern drilling techniques.
The company's first hole at Aquila, AQ20-01, cut two zones of gold mineralization. From a depth of 37.6 meters, this hole cut 3.6 meters averaging 4.46 grams per metric ton gold and at a depth of 46.6 meters, cut 17.4 meters averaging 2.24 g/t gold and 3.2 g/t silver.
The 2021 drilling at Aquila included 13 reverse circulation drill holes focused on expanding the Amethyst vein encountered in hole AQ20-01. Heliostar says all 13 holes cut the Amethyst vein, which has now been traced for 475 meters along strike.
Earlier this month, Heliostar reported the results from the first seven holes of the 2021 Aquila drilling, highlights include:
• 7.62 meters averaging 2.45 g/t gold from a depth of 60.96 meters in AQRC21-01.
• 1.52 meters averaging 5.57 g/t gold from a depth of 73.15 meters in AQRC21-05.
• 3.05 meters averaging 6.51 g/t gold from a depth of 28.96 meters in AQRC21-09.
The latest batch of results is from the remaining six holes, highlights include:
• 18.28 meters averaging 1.77 g/t from a depth of 4.57 meters in AQRC21-12, including a 7.62-meter higher grade subsection averaging 3.44 g/t gold.
• 41.15 meters averaging 0.55 g/t gold from a depth of 1.52 meters in AQRC21-13, including a 1.52-meter higher grade subsection averaging 5.95 g/t gold.
These two holes were drilled 80 and 120 meters to the northeast of discovery hole AQ20-01.
Heliostar points out that gold mineralization getting thicker to the northeast, indicating that the gold mineralizing system may be becoming more robust in this direction. This area is a major intersection of the regionally significant northeast striking Shumagin Vein Corridor and several east-west striking veins. Vein intersections often form the basis for gold-rich shoots within the veins, which the company says is looking likely in this zone at Aquila.
Heliostar's geologists believe that the Aquila target has excellent potential for further expansion.
All 2021 drilling at Aquila with an RC rig and the deepest drill intercept to date is only 70 meters below surface. Mineralization is open at depth with the expectation that there is a significant window for mineralization down-dip.
The company interprets that the current drilling as being only at the top of the mineralized system. The geological evidence of a high gold-to-silver ratio, high precious metals-to-base metal ratio, relative elevation of Aquila to SH-1 and Apollo, and specific quartz textures observed within the veins indicates a shallow level within the system.
As such, Heliostar says the 2021 results position Aquila as a third center of mineralization at the Unga project. This target is connected by road to the other two centers, the SH-1 deposit and the former Apollo Mine, providing convenient access for further lower cost exploration and potential mining options.
"The 2021 program continues to deliver, showing the SH-1 resource is just one of many high-grade targets within the Unga district," said Heliostar Metals CEO Charles Funk. "These results build on those from earlier in September at Aquila and define a new zone with intercepts from surface that are wide open for expansion."
In addition to Aquila, Heliostar is testing several other targets across the wider Unga project.
"Systematic exploration is proving very successful to unlock the Unga District and more assay results are pending from this year's program, including from the SH-1 Resource and Apollo targets," said Funk. "Planning has commenced for drilling at Centennial in November and December due to the ability to drill year-round on parts of the project."