Pacgold highlights the gold exploration potential of north Queensland

Pacgold ASX PGO Alice River Gold project IPO
Pacgold is now fully funding for a two-year exploration program at its north Queensland gold project following its heavily oversubscribed $6 million IPO.

With its listing on the ASX Thursday, Pacgold (ASX: PGO) has offered investors a new brownfield gold story — and a new historic gold field. 

While the gold sector has seen a rash of gold start-ups and junior capital raisings over the past 12 months, they have been heavily weighted to a few geographical areas: the Lachlan Fold Belt of NSW, and the historical Victorian and Western Australian gold fields.

The company has billed itself as a first mover in “an overlooked terrain” in north Queensland. 

That terrain in the York Peninsula, the company’s asset being the Alice River gold project with its portfolio of eight mining leases and five exploration permits. 

Pacgold describes the project as containing “compelling” new high-grade gold targets along a 30km corridor — and centred on a historic gold field. 

York Peninsula has a long gold history 

The peninsula has a substantial gold narrative, hosting several large deposits including Kidston (5 million ounces), Horn Island (500,000oz) and two other 2Moz deposits.

It is fully funded now for two-year program of exploration and drilling after its $6 million initial public offering was heavily oversubscribed and closed early.

Chair Catherine Moises, a resources analyst, says Pacgold is a first mover in terms of planning modern exploration techniques in this highly prospective historical gold region. 

“We have an energised, experienced exploration team with a track record of discovery through to development and production,” she added. 

The company plans to kick off 6,000m of drilling, accessing three priority targets covering 7km of the gold-bearing share zone: the Central, Southern and Northern targets. 

Both reverse circulation and diamond drilling will both be used at the Central target in a 2,200m initial program, this prospect having what are described as strong geophysical targets along strike from a historic open pit mine. Down plunge extensions to gold mineralisation will also be tested. 

Reverse circulation drilling will test surface geochemical anomalies at Southern while, at Northern, there is a 2km-long interpreted vein system under shallow cover to be drilled 

Alice River has produced high-grade gold back to 1903

The Alice River field was discovered in 1903 and worked until 1917 by several underground operations down to 40m, producing 3,000oz at an average 30 grams per tonne gold.

In the late 1980s a shallow 40m open pit was mined, producing 30,000oz at 5.6g/t, and then in the 1990s 3,000oz was extracted in colluvial and alluvial gold at 2.5g/t.

Alice River was held for 20 years by a prospector who conducted only limited exploration. (The project was acquired by Pacgold from a deceased estate last December.) 

Chair Cathy Moises sits on several boards — rare earth hopeful Arafura Resources (ASX: ARU), brine explorer Australian Potash (ASX: APC), WA Kaolin (ASX: WAK) and precious and base metals explorer Podium Minerals (ASX: POD).

The managing director is geologist Tony Schreck who was until recently was managing director of Metal Bank (ASX: MBK). 

Other directors, Shane Goodwin and Michael Pitt, have held senior roles in major resources companies including zinc producer New Century Resources (ASX: NCZ).

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