Alderan Resources completes maiden drilling to extend remnant gold zones at Drum and Mizpah
US-focused explorer Alderan Resources (ASX: AL8) has closed out a maiden drilling campaign at its flagship Detroit project in the Drum Mountains region of western Utah.
Eight diamond holes for 868.6m were completed at the historic Drum oxide gold deposit and one hole was drilled at the Mizpah prospect, 2 kilometres to the north.
The campaign aimed to verify and extend remnant oxide mineralisation at both locations.
Assays have indicated that remnant high-grade mineralisation is open down dip below the southern and northern ends of the East Pit at Drum.
A step-out diamond hole completed 350m northwest of Mizpah was drilled to a depth of 164.89m and intersected 69m at 0.18 grams per tonne gold.
Alderan managing director Scott Caithness said the result showed the mineralised system could be much larger than past work suggested.
“Early assays have confirmed that thick and high-grade oxide gold zones remain below the northern and southern ends of Drum’s East Pit we are optimistic that assays will also contain gold mineralisation,” he said.
“The hole at Mizpah demonstrated that the gold system is greater than 50m thick, 350m down dip from the historically drilled deposit, suggesting that it could be significantly larger than historically defined.”
The Drum mine produced 125,000 ounces of gold between 1984 and 1989, but had seen no modern exploration until Alderan commenced work there late last year.
The company aimed to test for oxide gold left behind when mining ceased while investigating the potential for down dip extensions to the mineralised horizons.
The remnant mineralisation was modelled from drill hole data collected by Western States Minerals and Jumbo Mining between 1982 and 1989.
The data indicated that the mineralisation at Drum primarily occurs in the lower Tatow unit and the upper Chisholm Formation within a northeast-southwest trending structural corridor bound by two steeply dipping faults.
Both units consist of fine-grained calcareous shales, siltstones and carbonates and are separated by the massive and unmineralised Howell Limestone.
Detroit mining district
The Detroit project is one of four Alderan assets in Utah state and lies within the Detroit mining district which contains numerous historical copper, gold and manganese operations.
The district has been explored for copper and gold in the past by major mining companies including Anaconda Copper and BHP Group (ASX: BHP) but none of them were able to build a significant contiguous land position to enable large-scale modern exploration.
Mr Caithness said Alderan would complete an environmental assessment at Drum which is a requirement on federal land when ground disturbance activities such as drill site preparation and access track construction exceeds approximately five acres.
The company is currently able to drill in excess of 10 holes from already permitted sites within the Drum acreage.
Mizpah is on Utah state land which does not have the same environmental assessment requirements and permitting of drill sites is proceeding.