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File Created: 24-Jul-1985 by BC Geological Survey (BCGS)
Last Edit:  01-May-1997 by Peter S. Fischl (PSF)

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NMI 092H7 Cu1
Name ORIOLE (L.808), TIN CUP (L.635S), PIT 4, COPPER MOUNTAIN Mining Division Similkameen
BCGS Map 092H038
Status Past Producer NTS Map 092H07E
Latitude 049º 19' 07'' UTM 10 (NAD 83)
Longitude 120º 30' 50'' Northing 5465849
Easting 680669
Commodities Copper, Gold Deposit Types L03 : Alkalic porphyry Cu-Au
Tectonic Belt Intermontane Terrane Quesnel, Plutonic Rocks
Capsule Geology

The Oriole deposit is located 1.8 kilometres east of the Similkameen River and 15.5 kilometres south of Princeton.

The area is underlain by the eastern facies of the Upper Triassic Nicola Group, comprising mafic augite and hornblende porphyritic pyroclastics and flows. These rocks are intruded by diorite and monzonite, locally pyroxenite and gabbro, of the Early Jurassic Copper Mountain and Lost Horse intrusions. Refer to Similco (092HSE001) for a detailed review of regional geology.

This deposit is situated on the east margin of the Copper Mountain stock (Copper Mountain Intrusions). The stock consists of locally altered, medium-grained diorite in this vicinity. The adjacent volcanics are comprised of breccia, agglomerate and andesitic tuff, formerly included with the Wolfe Creek Formation (Geological Survey of Canada Memoir 171). The contact between the stock and the volcanics is somewhat irregular, striking north to west-northwest through the deposit. The diorite and volcanics are intruded by five subparallel quartz feldspar porphyritic felsite dykes ("Mine Dykes"), striking north-northwest in the vicinity of the contact.

The intrusive and volcanic breccia are cut by fractures of various orientations. One prominent set strikes 055 to 085 degrees. Both lithologies are also cut by pegmatite veins.

The fractures and adjacent wallrock contain pyrite, magnetite, bornite, chalcopyrite, epidote, zoisite, orthoclase, biotite and rare quartz. This mineralization is not confined to a particular fracture set. The pegmatite veins contain abundant disseminated chalcopyrite and bornite. Minor disseminated pyrite, magnetite, bornite and chalcopyrite are also present in the volcanic breccia.

Diamond drilling has outlined a vertically dipping zone, 180 metres long, averaging 46 metres wide and grading 0.5 per cent copper (George Cross News Letter No. 118 (June 19), 1990). An assay of 4.3 grams per tonne gold is also reported (Minister of Mines Annual Report 1899, page 741).

A considerable amount of pyrite and chalcopyrite occurs in volcanic breccia one hundred metres to the north, in the southwest portion of the Tin Cup claim (Lot 635).

This deposit was initially explored by two shafts and a number of trenches between 1899 and 1908. Granby Consolidated Mining, Smelting and Power Company Ltd. began mining the deposit in 1954 from two open pits on Lot 808, just east of the Copper Mountain stock. Mining ceased in 1956. Production for 1955 amounted to 30,800 tonnes averaging 0.70 per cent copper (George Cross News Letter No.18 (January 25), 1990). Similco Mines Ltd. operator of the Similco (Copper Mountain) mine (092HSE001), carried out recent diamond drilling in 1989 and 1990.

As at December 31, 1996 the geological resource of the Oriole deposit is 2,651,453 tonnes grading 0.437 per cent copper at a cutoff grade of 0.23 per cent copper and a stripping ratio of 3.70 (Princeton Mining Corporation 1996 Annual Report, page 9).

EMPR AR 1899-741; 1900-898,903; 1901-1169; 1903-248; 1908-125l; 1913-244; 1953-105; 1954-114; 1955-40; 1956-72; 1968-206
GSC BULL 239, pp. 140,141
GSC MAP 300A; 888A; 1386A; 41-1989
GSC MEM *171, pp. 44-46; 243
GSC P 85-1A, pp. 349-358
GSC RPT 986 (1908)
CIM BULL Vol. 44, No. 469, pp. 317-324 (1951); Vol. 61, No. 673, pp. 633-636 (1968)
CIM Special Volume 15, pp. 368-375 (1976)
CIM Trans. Vol. 18, pp. 192-201 (1915)
CJES Vol. 24, pp. 2521-2536 (1987)
GCNL #18,*#118,#148, 1990
N MINER *July 2, 1990
Montgomery, J.H. (1967): Petrology, Structure and Origin of the Copper Mountain Intrusions near Princeton, British Columbia; unpublished Ph.D. thesis, University of British Columbia
Princeton Mining Corporation 1996 Annual Report, p. 9
EMPR PFD 908517, 811755