The Mouse Mountain showing is located within the Central Quesnel Belt, 13 kilometres northeast of Quesnel.
The Upper Triassic to Lower Jurassic Quesnel Belt consists of sedimentary and volcanic rocks considered to be the northern equivalents of the Nicola Group. Intruding these rocks are small felsic to intermediate calc-alkaline plutons of Lower to Middle Jurassic age which are comagmatic with the volcanic rocks of the upper part of the Nicola stratigraphy.
Mouse Mountain is underlain by three small plutons of feldspar porphyry. The Mouse Mountain stock intrudes Upper Triassic basaltic rocks and Lower Jurassic felsic to mafic polylithologic breccias.
Mineralization consists mainly of chalcopyrite, bornite and minor tetrahedrite and occurs within felsic to intermediate breccias as disseminations and fracture fillings. Disseminated copper mineralization also occurs within the feldspar porphyry stock. Associated alteration in the volcanic rocks is mainly argillic and propylitic with some potassic alteration of the stock.
Mouse Mountain is considered to be an alkalic porphyry copper-gold occurrence. Mineralization at Mouse Mountain lies immediately next to, or above, small, high-level, subvolcanic, magnetic, alkalic, quartz-poor intrusive bodies that invade Nicola volcanic rocks.
The following descriptions of the main mineralized zones and assays were taken from Assessment Report 30438, which in turn were derived from Assessment Reports 22307 and 22506 and an unpublished report by Sanguinetti (Placer Dome, 1989).
The High Grade zone is the most southerly known prospect on Mouse Mountain. It is a fracture zone with chalcopyrite, bornite and trace chalcocite in fine grained monzonite; the zone is thought to strike north, is 3 metres wide and was only traced for 1.5 metres. A chip sample from the showing yielded 1.58 per cent copper over 3 metres; gold values were insignificant.
The Valentine zone, an area stripped in 1987, and about a hectare in size, lies about 600 metre northwest of the “high-grade zone”. It is an exposure of fractured and faulted fine grained diorite, monzonite and syenite containing disseminated chalcopyrite, minor pyrite and traces of molybdenite on fractures. Slightly silicified and chloritized volcanic breccia with minor copper mineralization surround the intrusive rocks. The mineralized zone is strongly sheared and fractured. The most northerly intercept of the Valentine zone is in a trench that yielded 0.32 per cent copper and 0.44 gram per tonne gold over a surface width of 7.01 metres (greater than or equal to 6 metres true width). The most southerly indication of the zone is in DDH 91-9. This drillhole is about 240 metres south-southeast of the trench; it intersected 29.56 metres grading 0.08 per cent copper with 0.15 gram per tonne gold.
The Rainbow Breccia, which lies about 700 metres northwest of the Valentine, is a 7 by 3 metre exposure of pale green-grey, siliceous, chloritized breccia with disseminated pyrite and chalcopyrite. Trenches intersected a sheared structure trending 060 degrees in monzonite porphyry and light grey felsite. All rocks are mineralized with up to 5 per cent disseminated pyrite and locally 1 to 2 per cent chalcopyrite. Extensive malachite and azurite occur adjacent to a fractured monzonite breccia. The best chip sample yielded 0.255 per cent copper and 0.14 gram per tonne gold across 5.18 metres.
Dupont’s drill target represents the fourth area of interest along the northeast flank of Mouse Mountain. It lies about 250 metres northwest of the Rainbow Breccia. Bedrock is the same as that at the Rainbow Breccia: siliceous, chloritized intrusive and volcanic breccia with disseminated pyrite and calcite-filled fractures. The altered monzonite breccia was also weakly mineralized with chalcopyrite. A grab sample from this area yielded 0.18 per cent copper and 0.14 gram per tonne gold. The best result from the Dupont drilling averaged 0.102 per cent copper and 0.1 gram per tonnet gold over 51.8 metres.
Exploration work on Mouse Mountain had been conducted by Mcfee Exploration and Harrison Minerals in 1955-56. In 1955, most work at Mouse Mountain was focused on copper-gold showings. Old test pits, drill core and trenches indicate early work with no known record. In 1955, 2400 metres of diamond drilling was completed on the property and a year later 18.1 tonnes of cobbed ore grading 6.0 per cent copper, 1.72 grams per tonne gold and 17.2 grams per tonne silver was shipped to the Tacoma smelter (Property File Rimfire -MacDonald, A., 1963). Further work by Clarence Fuller and Sture Pearson (1963) and Granby Mining Company (1966) was indicated.
In 1967, preparatory work for a program of heap leach copper extraction from the old workings was begun by Euclid Mining Corp. with minor stripping and crushing. Pilot leach tests were completed before the program ended because of a lack of funds.
In 1970, Bethlehem Copper completed 14 percussion-drill holes between 61 and 110 metres deep on the Valentine zone. The best of these assayed 0.15 per cent copper over 55 metres. In 1975, five percussion-drill holes, performed by Dumont, contained 3-metre sections of up to 240 parts per billion gold and 0.25 per cent copper (Property File Rimfire - Archer, Cathro and Associates, 1984). One hole averaged 0.145 per cent copper over 55 metres and bottomed in 0.33 per cent copper; another bottomed in 9 metres of 0.07 per cent copper. No gold results were reported.
In 1974, Hudson’s Bay Oil and Gas Company carried out a soil geochemical survey southwest of Mouse Mountain and analyzed for copper, lead, zinc, silver and molybdenum. This pinpointed several anomalous zones including the Valentine. In 1975, Dupont of Canada Ltd. drilled 5 percussion holes on the north side of Mouse Mountain. The holes were between 94 and 106 metres. One hole averaged just above 0.1 per cent copper and 0.09 gram per tonne gold across 52 metres.
From 1981-84, while they held the ground, First Nuclear Corp. carried out a program of prospecting, linecutting and soil sampling. Samples were analyzed for copper, lead, zinc and molybdenum with unexceptional results. Some soil samples were panned for gold without anomalous results.
In 1986, Quesnel Mines Ltd. became the owner of the ground and worked on grid preparation, backhoe trenching, stripping, prospecting, magnetometer and VLF-EM surveys. No extensive economic mineralization was discovered although pyritic zones and chalcopyrite were discovered.
In 1989, Placer Dome optioned the ground to test for QR-type replacement gold mineralization (093A 121) at contacts between felsic breccia and basalt. A grid of 73.3 line-kilometres was sampled with 1328 soil samples, 52 line-kilometres of total field ground magnetic survey and 42 line-kilometres of induced polarization (IP) surveys were completed. A number of soil samples from the 1989 survey returned elevated gold. Copper anomalies were found near the mineralized showings on Mouse Mountain as well as to the east. The latter were not explained.
In 1991 and 1992, Teck conducted 151 kilometres of ground magnetic and VLF-EM surveys on three grids on the Mouse Mountain property. Several large-scale (200-600 metre diameter) magnetic highs were located south of Mouse Mountain. Conductive VLF-EM anomalies trend northwest and were interpreted to reflect bedrock contrast. A 9.5 line-kilometre IP survey located chargeability anomalies on the south and west edges of Mouse Mountain. Teck diamond drilled nine holes totalling 915.62 metres. Short intervals of copper and gold mineralization were cut with the best intersection being 18.29 metres of 0.16 per cent copper, including 6.1 metres of 0.31 per cent copper and 0.12 parts per million gold.
From 2005 to 2008, Richfield Resources Ltd. conducted programs of prospecting, soil, rock and silt sampling, extensive trenching, induced polarization surveying and 5571.9 metres of NQ diamond drilling in 15 holes. Five of the nine holes drilled under the Rainbow zone have low grade copper intersections on the order of 0.1 per cent copper over lengths on the order of 100 metres accompanied by gold values. Rainbow zone drilling outlined a substantial volume of rock with anomalous copper and gold. Drilling tested and closed off possible extension of the zone to the north, west and south leaving extension to the east open. Grades seen in the core were reported to be currently uneconomic. Two holes were drilled beneath the Valentine zone to look for extension of copper-gold mineralization below Teck and Bethlehem holes which ended in low grade copper mineralization. Although low grade copper-gold was intersected in the top of one hole it does not extend to depth. The Valentine drilling shows that the potential to extend the Valentine to depth or laterally are reported to be slight.
A second phase of diamond drilling (1075.3 metres) by Richfield Resources in 2008 comprised three holes targeting the Rainbow zone, and one hole drilled about 1 kilometre north of the zone to test an outlier geophysical target. The drilling on the Valentine zone concentrated on possible extension of the zone to the northwest with drillhole RVC 08-16, and to the southeast with drillhole RVC 08-17; neither of the holes was successful in discovering extensions to the mineralization in these directions. The drillhole (RVC 08-18) testing the outlier geophysical target proved unproductive (Assessment Report 31365).
In 2012-13, CanAlaska Uranium Ltd. staked claims covering the Mouse Mountain showings. In 2014, CanAlaska evaluated and sampled the showings to compare and verify results from previous work.