The BOLIVAR WEST prospect is located on the west side of Bolivar Creek, approximately 15 kilometres west-northwest of Peachland.
The area is underlain by a pendant of Triassic-Jurassic Nicola Group andesite and lesser interbedded hornfelsed sediments and skarn. Granodiorite and diorite of the Early Jurassic Pennask Batholith intrude and underlay the Nicola Group rocks. These intrusive rocks outcrop several hundred metres to the south and west of the prospect.
Exploration in this area, for gold bearing quartz veins and shear zones, dates back to the 1890s when the ALMA MATER (082ENW017) and the SILVER KING (082ENW018) were developed. During the 1960s and early 1970s the entire area west of Okanagan Lake was subject to a major exploration effort directed at copper-molybdenum porphyry deposits.
Beginning in 1986 the gold potential of Nicola Group skarns was investigated by Fairfield Minerals Ltd. During the following 2 years Fairfield carried out a major program of soil sampling, prospecting, linecutting, geological mapping, magnetometer surveys, trenching and 6000 metres of reverse circulation drilling. Exploration focused on a number of mineral occurrences within the Nicola Group, including: BOLIVAR WEST, BOLIVAR EAST (082ENW099), BOLIVAR ROAD (082ENW100), BOLIVAR CREEK (082ENW101), IRON HORSE (082ENW025), and CAP (082ENW026).
In 1987, Fairfield undertook a major trenching program on their OKA claim group. In the BOLIVAR WEST area, gold mineralization was found in a northeast trending quartz vein and arsenopyrite veinlets. A grab sample assayed 22.9 grams per tonne gold (Assessment Report 18711).
In 1988, a joint venture between Fairfield Minerals Ltd. and Placer Dome Inc. funded a 6000 metre reverse circulation drill program. In the BOLIVAR WEST area 6 vertical holes were drilled for a total of 808.25 metres. Holes were spotted to test several gold soil anomalies and to evaluate weak gold mineralization found in strongly fractured, quartz veined volcanic rocks exposed in trenches. Gold assays from 4 holes exceeded 0.5 gram per tonne (Assessment Report 18711). The best intersection, 14.33 grams per tonne gold over 1.52 metres in hole 88-26, was associated with an iron stained, fine-grained siliceous rock (Assessment Report 18711). Elevated gold values were not correlatable along bedding between the drillholes, and they were found in all rock types, including granodiorite, andesite, and a fine-grained siliceous rock. This was thought to suggest structural control on mineralization. The projection of the mineralized quartz vein found in 1987, passes immediately north of hole 88-26 and this vein may have been intersected by the drillhole. No arsenopyrite was noted in the drillholes but minor amounts of pyrite were common.
In 1994, 2 holes (291 metres) were drilled to test mineralization intersected in the previous drilling. One hole encountered pyrite, sphalerite and arsenopyrite, with minor gold, in a quartz-calcite vein.