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File Created: 20-Feb-1996 by Jay W. Page (JWP)
Last Edit:  16-Feb-2008 by Karl A. Flower (KAF)

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Name MISSION CREEK, WILL 1-12, GALLAGHER'S CANYON Mining Division Vernon
BCGS Map 082E084
Status Past Producer NTS Map 082E14W
Latitude 049º 51' 15'' UTM 11 (NAD 83)
Longitude 119º 19' 53'' Northing 5525023
Easting 332419
Commodities Gold Deposit Types C01 : Surficial placers
C02 : Buried-channel placers
Tectonic Belt Intermontane Terrane Overlap Assemblage, Monashee
Capsule Geology

The MISSION CREEK placer gold occurrence is found in the Mission Creek gravels downstream from an exposure of a Quaternary conglomerate in Gallagher's Canyon. This area is located within the Kelowna City municipal limits, approximately 12 kilometres east of the mouth of Mission Creek.

The conglomerate, which is believed to be the source of the gold, is underlain by epiclastic and pyroclastic rocks of the Eocene Penticton Group, White Lake Formation. These rocks have been thrust westward forming northerly trending, over-turned folds. The Mission Creek fault, located less than a kilometre to the south, exposes gneiss of the Upper Proterozoic Shuswap Metamorphic Complex.

The conglomerate is an interglacial alluvial deposit which is contained within a sequence of gently, eastward sloping glacial tills. Immediately underlying the conglomerate is a buff coloured, banded silt containing fragments of bituminous material. The conglomerate, as exposed in the upper reaches of Gallagher's Canyon, is a competent but interstitially friable, and limonitic weathering rock. The clasts are closely packed, and are composed of well-rounded to angular granite, diorite and argillite pebbles, cobbles and fragments. The interstitial material is predominately siliceous (quartz sand?). The conglomerate is conformably overlain by a well-bedded dark volcanic, averaging 1 metre in thickness. This volcanic may be related to the Pleistocene Lambly Creek Basalt eruptions to the west. It is speculated that the conglomerate, which outcrops as a rusty weathering gravel at the exit of Gallagher's Canyon, is actually the Rutland aquifer (Roed M.A. (1995): Geology of the Kelowna Area and Origin of the Okanagan Valley).

Early records of placer gold mining on Mission Creek date from 1876, although the discovery is credited to William Peon in 1861. Small-scale placer mining of the creek gravels continued intermittently until the 1930s. Recorded production (Bulletin 28, page 63) of gold during the period 1876 to 1895 was 20558 grams (661 troy ounces). Sluicing of the underlying silts and excavation of an 8-metre adit in the conglomerate is thought to date from the early to mid-1970s. Very high gold assays were reported from 8 overburden drillholes in 1975; however, they could not be reproduced by subsequent sampling. Much of Gallagher's Canyon is now covered by the Scenic Canyon Regional Park.

EMPR AR 1876-423; 1877-405; 1878-378; 1879-241; 1886-213; 1887-277;
1888-317; 1889-292; 1890-379; 1894-753; 1926-200; 1933-198;
1934-D34; 1935-D15
EMPR BULL 28, p. 63
EMPR OF 1994-8
EMPR PF (*White, G. (1975-04-21): re: Mission Au - Will 1-12 Mining Claims; Renshaw R.E. (1975-03-06): Geological Report on the Mission Creek Gold Deposits)
GSC MAP 538A; 15-1961; 1701A; 1712A; 1713A; 1714A; 1736A;
7686G; 8511G
GSC OF 409; 637; 736; 1969
Roed M.A. (1995): *Geology of the Kelowna Area and Origin of the
Okanagan Valley; Kelowna Geology Committee, 183 pages.