The Axe (South zone) prospect is 1 kilometre southwest of Summers Creek, 5 kilometres south-southeast of the summit of Missezula Mountain and 20 kilometres north of Princeton.
This area along Summers Creek is underlain by the Eastern volcanic facies of the Upper Triassic Nicola Group, comprising mafic, augite and hornblende porphyritic pyroclastics and flows, and associated alkaline intrusions. These rocks are intruded by granodiorite and quartz diorite of the Middle to Late Cretaceous Summers Creek pluton.
This prospect is part of the Axe property, a large porphyry system some 3.2 kilometres in diameter, containing three significant zones of copper mineralization, including the South zone. The other two zones are the Adit (092HNE143) and West (092HNE142) zones. The South zone is 800 metres south of the Adit zone and 1500 metres southwest of the West zone. This porphyry-copper hydrothermal system is related to the intrusion of small stocks and dikes of fine-grained diorite and monzonite occurring through the Adit and West zones. These intrusions are interpreted to be part of the Nicola magmatic suite and may represent the deeper part of Nicola volcanoes.
The South zone is hosted in green to grey augite and/or plagioclase porphyritic basaltic to andesitic flows of the Nicola Group (Central belt, Bulletin 69). The flows are comprised of up to 50 per cent euhedral augite crystals, 15 per cent plagioclase crystals and up to 15 per cent hornblende in a fine-grained matrix. A few dacite tuffs and/or flows occur with the andesites and basalts. The volcanics are cut by a few porphyritic diorite dikes. These rocks are intruded by medium to coarse-grained porphyritic monzonite of the Summers Creek pluton immediately southeast of the deposit.
The hostrocks are strongly faulted, fractured and sheared in all orientations. One prevalent fracture set strikes 045 degrees. A fault striking 140 to 170 degrees, dipping steeply northeast to southwest, traverses the area of copper mineralization. This structure is part of the north-striking Summers Creek fault system.
Mineralized units exhibit significant propylitic and lesser potassic and argillic alteration. The volcanics are chloritized pervasively and along fractures. Epidote commonly accompanies the chlorite and also forms fracture fillings and irregular veins, usually with calcite. Strong zones of albitization are locally present. Secondary orthoclase, often with magnetite and/or epidote, occurs as weakly developed pervasive alteration or as veins. The mineral also forms alteration envelopes along quartz veins. These postmineral (?) veins and associated orthoclase flooding may be a result of the emplacement of the nearby Summers Creek stock. Fine-grained biotite often accompanies chlorite. Clay is developed along the numerous shears and fault zones. Limonite, hematite, malachite and azurite occur along fractures in minor amounts.
Sulphide mineralization is usually in veins, stringers and fracture fillings and to a lesser extent as disseminations. The sulphides consist of pyrite, chalcopyrite, minor molybdenite and rare pyrrhotite. Chalcopyrite exceeds pyrite in areas of stronger mineralization. Abundant disseminated and vein magnetite (up to 15 per cent) is present in such areas. Chalcopyrite and pyrite tend to be disseminated in pervasive chlorite, epidote and albite, and along fractures with chlorite, epidote and some magnetite. Molybdenite occurs in quartz veins, in chlorite-lined fractures, as irregular stringers and as disseminations in locally strong, pervasive epidote and orthoclase alteration. The bulk of the copper mineralization appears to be older than molybdenum mineralization, which may be associated with the Summers Creek stock.
Significant copper mineralization occurs in a zone 200 metres wide, trending northwest for about 550 metres. The deposit is developed along the southwest flank of the previously noted fault striking 140 to 170 degrees. Trenching and diamond drilling up to 1973 has defined indicated reserves of 37,191,100 tonnes grading 0.48 per cent copper (Northern Miner - September 6, 1973). Precious metal values are generally low. One drillhole intersected 30.05 metres grading 0.51 per cent copper, 2.3 grams per tonne silver and 0.099 gram per tonne gold (Assessment Report 9896, page 12, hole M-2).
A second zone, known as the Mid zone, lies 250 metres north of the South zone. Scattered copper mineralization occurs in bedded andesitic crystal and lithic tuffs in an area trending northwest for 250 metres. Pyrite and chalcopyrite are accompanied by orthoclase, epidote, chlorite, calcite and magnetite alteration and veining.
The Axe (South zone) was initially explored by the Meridian Exploration Syndicate in 1967 after being staked by J.A. Stinson in 1966. The company completed geological, geophysical and soil geochemical surveys, 760 metres of trenching and 651 metres of diamond drilling in 7 holes. Amax Exploration Inc. conducted additional geological, geophysical and soil geochemical surveys between 1969 and 1971. Adonis Mines Ltd. diamond-drilled five holes in the South zone and two in the Mid zone in 1972. The company also completed 1800 metres of trenching between 1972 and 1973. The property was then optioned by Global Energy Corporation (formerly Adonis Mines) to Cominco Ltd. in 1980. Cominco completed geological and magnetometer surveys over the deposit in 1981 and 1982.
From 1980 to 1993, Cominco earned a controlling interest in the claims by completing work programs during the period 1980-1983. During this period, they compiled all historical data, abandoned all original claims and re-staked the Axe 3000, 4000, 5000, 6000 claims. They also completed magnetometer, VLF electromagnetic surveys, rock and soil geochemistry, and drilled six diamond drill holes totaling 765 metres. In 1991, Cominco drilled eleven percussion holes totaling 375 metres in an area of gold soil anomalies. This program was unsuccessful for the most part in penetrating deep overburden.
In 1994, Cominco sold the claims to the Predator Syndicate, who maintained the claims to their status in 2004. The claims were transferred to Kenneth L. Daughtry, who held the claims in trust for the syndicate until March 2003. From 1997 to 2000, the property was optioned to Causeway Mining Corp. They performed a work program in 1998 consisting of an IP survey, reviewing of available drill core, rock chip sampling and staking five additional claims.
In 2003, Bearclaw Capital Corp. entered into an agreement to option the Axe property. Work was done on the Axe (Adit zone) - 092HNE143 in 2003 and 2004. Please refer to that occurrence for further details.