Red Mountain Mining (ASX: RMX) reports from its Western Australian projects that, at one, mapping and rock chip sampling for rare earths will begin next month while, at its copper-gold project, diamond drilling is expected to reach its target “in coming days”.
In its latest exploration progress report, the company said 952 soil samples have been collected at its Mt Mansbridge rare earths project, located near Halls Creek in WA’s Kimberley region.
The samples were collected from three priority prospects at Mt Mansbridge: Killi Killi, Vader and Kylo.
Assays are expected in late July or early August.
Rare earth drilling later this year
The company said mapping and rock chip sampling of the anomalies is expected to begin in early August, after the assays have been received.
This new program of work will aim to define several targets for drill testing later in the year.
Meanwhile, the survey of the Deja-vu target at Mt Mansbridge is expected to begin shortly, targeting nickel-copper-cobalt-platinum group elements (PGE).
The rare earth tenements lie about 40km from Northern Minerals’ (ASX: NTU) flagship Browns Range project.
Red Mountain’s project area has been subject to exploration activities since the 1970s, primarily for uranium, gold and diamonds, which were all unsuccessful.
However, the presence of the rare earth mineral xenotime in the Killi Killi prospect has been overlooked and Red Mountain has stated it sees the opportunity to capitalise on this and determine whether there is an economically viable concentration of rare earth elements.
Near gold target at Maitland South
Meanwhile, at the Mt Maitland gold-copper project in WA’s Murchison region, Red Mountain said diamond drilling at the Maitland South prospect is progressing well and has reached 230m from surface.
“It is expected that drilling will intersect the target within the coming days at about 320m,” it added.
Maitland South is a long shear zone more than 500m long, which is characterised by numerous historical workings.
Shallow reverse circulation drilling has returned 7m at 3.3 grams per tonne of gold from 34m down hole and 13m at 2.53g/t gold from 9m.
The company has identified 19km of highly prospective strike across the project, which hosts historic gold production.
Mt Maitland is within 50km of major mining operations including Sandfire Resources’ (ASX: SFR) DeGrussa copper-gold mine.
Gold was first discovered in the area in 1898 in high-grade quartz veins, and production has predominantly taken place at two main prospect locations, Mt Maitland North and Mt Maitland South.
Records exist only from 1933 when gold production was noted as having an average grade of 19.3g/t.