The Argo occurrence is one of a group of gold-silver showings which occur in a small area 10 kilometres west of the south end of Tatlayako Lake. Other showings in this group are covered by the Langara (092N 036) and Standard (092N 037) occurrences. Gold was discovered in 1911, although the area was not explored properly until the mid-1930's, and again in 1987 and 1988.
The area lies in the Gambier overlap assemblage between the northeastern margin of the Jurassic to Tertiary Coast Plutonic Complex and the Tchaikazan fault to the northeast (Geological Survey of Canada Open File 1163, Map 1713A). It is located within a complex belt of folds and imbricated, gently southwest-dipping thrust sheets (Geological Survey of Canada Open File 1163, Papers 88-1E, 89-1E; Geology 1991). The thrusting took place in the Late Cretaceous because the thrusts are cut by a quartz diorite intrusion dated at 68 million years by the uranium-lead method on zircon (Geological Survey of Canada Papers 88-1E, 91-2).
The area of economic interest covers several square kilometres immediately south of a creek which flows east-northeast into Ottarasko Creek. The northern part of this area is underlain by a quartz diorite intrusion (which may be related to the 68 million year-old intrusion mentioned above). To the south of the intrusion are Lower Cretaceous siltstone, sandstone, greywacke and conglomerate (informally named the Cloud Drifter Formation in Geological Survey of Canada Papers 88-1E and 89-1E). These rocks contain isoclinal minor folds locally; bedding is obscure and rather irregular. The area also contains numerous, small mafic dykes.
The contact between the intrusion and the sedimentary rocks is irregular due to dyke-like projections and small stocks of quartz diorite, but generally it trends east-northeast for at least 3 kilometres. The adjacent sedimentary rocks have been strongly altered and hornfelsed by the intrusion for a width of 200 to 300 metres, and it is this zone that contains the most important mineral showings.
The hornfelsed and altered zone is characterized by silicification, pyritization and quartz veining. Fine pyrite and arsenopyrite are pervasive in trace amounts; chalcopyrite is less common. Locally oxidation has produced conspicuous limonitic zones. Quartz veins occupy fractures that cut both the quartz diorite and the sedimentary rocks. The veins are generally between 5 and 10 centimetres thick but may be up to 1.5 metres thick; some display epithermal textures. Some veins trend subparallel to the quartz diorite contact but these are much less mineralized than those that trend between northwest and north-northeast, which may be strongly mineralized with arsenopyrite and pyrite, with minor chalcopyrite and rare malachite.
The Argo occurrence is centred on a series of oxidized outcrops of silicified sandstone and argillite, containing disseminated sulphides, at the quartz diorite contact on the original Argo Crown-granted claim Lot 1177. Strong pyrite and arsenopyrite in quartz veins are accompanied locally by chalcopyrite, galena, sphalerite and pyrrhotite. Typical samples from this area contained or averaged between 1.5 and 8 grams per tonne gold and between 3.5 and 34 grams per tonne silver, and up to 0.43 per cent copper (Minister of Mines Annual Report 1935; Assessment Reports 16959, 17980).