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File Created: 24-Jul-1985 by BC Geological Survey (BCGS)
Last Edit:  04-Apr-2022 by Karl A. Flower (KAF)

Summary Help Help

BCGS Map 082F044
Status Developed Prospect NTS Map 082F06W
Latitude 049º 25' 39'' UTM 11 (NAD 83)
Longitude 117º 16' 07'' Northing 5475015
Easting 480522
Commodities Gold, Copper, Lead, Zinc Deposit Types L03 : Alkalic porphyry Cu-Au
I05 : Polymetallic veins Ag-Pb-Zn+/-Au
Tectonic Belt Omineca Terrane Quesnel
Capsule Geology

The Kena Gold showings are located about 7 kilometres south of Nelson and are part of the larger Kena property of Sultan Minerals Inc. The Kena property hosts a number of porphyry style, gold and gold-copper occurrences. The property lies on the eastern limb of the Hall Creek Syncline, a south-plunging fold associated with intense shearing that dominates the structure of the Nelson map area. The syncline incorporates volcanic and lesser sedimentary rocks of the Lower Jurassic Elise Formation (Rossland Group) which are intruded by a synvolcanic monzodiorite complex and by the younger? Middle Jurassic Silver King Intrusions comprising a coarse-grained plagioclase porphyry stock with related dikes and sills.

The Kena Gold showings (Main and Neil) were explored in the late 1800s and the old Cottonwood mine adit, located near a granitic stock, was used to prospect a quartz vein for gold, with little success. Elise Formation volcanics in the area comprise andesite lapilli tuff, augite basalt flow, flow breccia and fine mafic tuff. The Main and Neil showings consist of irregular veins and pods of massive pyrite in silicified and sericitized andesite. The Neil showing is about 100 metres southeast of the Main showing.

The Kena Gold zone occurs in a highly disrupted area along the flank of the Silver King porphyry stock. The section includes a number of dike and sill-like masses of monzodiorite, andesite porphyry and Silver King porphyry. Gold mineralization occurs in silicified and pyritized crackle breccia fracture zones in the volcanics related to subconcordant dioritic intrusions. Grades are variable but the gold appears to be structurally controlled and is related to the pyrite content. Broad zones of pervasive silicification and potassic alteration occur at the diorite intrusive contacts. These zones have assayed between 1.37 to 2.34 grams per tonne gold over 1.5 to 2.0 metres (Assessment Report 15767). Previous property owners believed gold to be associated with a fine grained, yellow, remobilized pyrite that varies from 1 to 90 per cent in content over short widths and which is distinct from the pale brassy pyrite commonly found in adjacent volcanic rocks. Broad zones of potassic alteration and silicification occur at the margins of the intrusions, and the best widths of mineralization occur where silicification intersects strong fracture systems. The most significant and dense fracture system is subvertical and trends at 090 degrees.

Chalcopyrite, sphalerite and galena occur as disseminations in quartz veins, or as massive sulphide veins adjacent to the dioritic rocks. These occurrences carry low gold concentrations, normally less than 3 grams per tonne. Not all of the silicified zones are gold bearing. Some of the quartz occurs as vuggy crystalline veins of the type commonly found around epithermal deposits. The andesite tuff assemblage has been highly sheared along the regional trend and shearing may have dislocated existing mineralization.

Although mineralizing structures trending 090 degrees had been identified by earlier property owners, all of the historic drilling on the Kena Gold zone has been conducted to cross the regional geology and foliation direction of 130 degrees. In 2000, a report by D. Rhys in part states that gold mineralization grading greater than 2 grams per tonne most consistently, although not exclusively, occurs in sets of east-west striking, steeply south dipping pyrite-quartz veins with pale grey potassium feldspar-sericite-quartz-calcite alteration. If continuous veins or vein systems of this type are developed, they could form higher grade vein targets within the broad area of low grade mineralization present in that area (Assessment Report 26503).

Disseminated pyrite is ubiquitous throughout the volcanic stratigraphy but increases in areas which are highly silicified and contain quartz veinlets. Locally, pyrite may comprise up to 10 per cent of the rock and copper mineralization reportedly corresponds to areas of pyrite-silica enrichment. Chalcopyrite with minor bornite occurs sparingly (0.15 to 0.4 per cent copper in bedrock) along foliation planes in the more mafic volcanics and to a lesser extent in intermediate units.

On the Kena Property the monzogabbro intrusive suite and the Silver King pluton host intrusion-related alteration and gold mineralization. Mineralization has been affected by regional deformation and veinlets cutting the volcanic hosts are frequently folded and transposed, those within the Silver King pluton less affected. Hydrothermal biotite associated with the mineralization are aligned in the regional foliation.

Hydrothermal alteration assemblages present in drill core in and around the Gold Mountain Zone are similar to the principal alteration types developed around gold-rich porphyry deposits (potassic, propylitic, intermediate argillic, and sericitic). The mineralization is post Aalenian and pre Bajocian. Gold mineralization occurs in areas of pervasively pyritized Silver King pluton and within 20 metres of the contact. It consists mainly of disseminated pyrite and chalcopyrite and fewer stringers and veinlets (EMPR Fieldwork 2002, pages 133-151).

Mineralization in the Kena property area was first described in a report by G.M Dawson in Geological Survey of Canada Annual Report for 1888-89. Little is known about exploration on the claim area prior to 1973. Post-1973 exploration, however, has identified old prospect pits and trenches, as well as several old adits indicating periods of exploration activity in the early part of the century. Numerous exploration companies carried out geological, geochemical, geophysical surveys, trenching and drilling on the property from 1974-91. These companies explored the Elise Formation volcanics for gold and copper mineralization and discovered the Kena Gold zone (this description), Kena Copper zone (082FSW332) and the Shaft/Cat zones (082FSW331). The Kena Gold zone underwent the most thorough exploration with the Kena Copper and Shaft/Cat zones only being tested minimally. No additional work was done until 1999 when Sultan Minerals Inc. acquired and amalgamated several properties under the name Kena property. Recent exploration work and data compilation by Sultan Minerals have identified four gold-bearing zones on the Kena property. These are: the newly discovered Gold Mountain (082FSW379), Kena Gold, Shaft/Cat, and South Gold soil anomaly located about 1000 metres south of the Kena Copper zone.

In 1981 to 1982, Kerr Addison Mines Ltd. completed drilling of three holes totalling 528.5 metres on the Kena Gold occurrence. Highlighted results included 15 metres grading 2.18 grams per tonne gold in hole 81-KK-2 (Giroux, G., Grunenberg, P. (2012-04-30): Technical Report on the Kena Property, Nelson, BC).

In 1985-1986, Lacana Mining Corporation conducted a drilling program on the Kena property consisting of 12 holes being drilled on the Kena Gold occurrence. Highlighted results included but are not limited to 4.8 metres grading 6.05 grams per tonne gold in hole LK85-7, and 1.86 metres grading 6.32 grams per tonne gold in hole LK85-18 (Giroux, G., Grunenberg, P. (2012-04-30): Technical Report on the Kena Property, Nelson, BC).

In 1990 to 1991, Noramco Mining Corporation completed a small diamond drilling program on the Kena Gold occurrence. Highlighted results included 140 metres grading greater than 0.5 grams per tonne gold, and 10 metres grading greater than 1.5 grams per tonne gold in hole NK91-3 (Giroux, G., Grunenberg, P. (2012-04-30): Technical Report on the Kena Property, Nelson, BC).

In 2000-2003, Sultan Minerals Inc. completed four drill holes on historic drill hole locations and 14 shallow drill holes along the surface. Results showed a large area of low grade gold at and surrounding the Kena Gold occurrence.

The Kena Gold zone has been extensively drill tested but much of the previously drilled core was never sampled. In 2000, Sultan Minerals relogged much of the historic core using alteration and mineralization studies in order to get a signature for the gold mineralization, and many unsampled sections were assayed. Also, structural data from outcrop and drill core was assessed and a new structure identified which appears to be the mineralizing control. Currently, remodeling of the Kena Gold zone is underway, utilizing this new mineralizing orientation and alteration assemblage data (Sultan Minerals Inc. Annual Report 2000).

In 2002, work completed on the Kena Property by Sultan Minerals Inc. consisted of drilling 7598 metres in 43 diamond drill holes on the Gold Mountain, Kena Gold, South Gold, Great Western and Starlight Zones. At the same time, expanded soil geochemical surveying was done west and north on the Gold Mountain and Kena Grids to cover newly acquired claims in the Starlight, Silver King Mine and Cariboo areas. The expanded Gold Mountain and Kena grids, plus the South Gold Zone, were covered by induced polarization geophysical surveying. Also, the main area of interest on the property, measuring about 3 by 7 kilometres in size, was flown for airborne magnetics and radiometrics by Fugro Airborne Surveys.

In 2003, Sultan Minerals Inc. announced that Kinross Gold Corporation was withdrawing from the Kena gold project. Sultan carried out a 22-hole 1500-metre drill program to further test the auriferous structural corridor and to expand and further define the gold mineralization at both the Gold Mountain (082FSW379) and the Kena Gold zones (082FSW237) to the south. A total of 14 short holes were completed on the Kena Gold Zone in 2003; highlights include 52.70 metres assaying 0.88 grams per tonne gold in hole 03KG-05 and 47 metres grading 0.71 grams per tonne gold in hole 03KG-11 (Exploration and Mining in BC 2003, page 39).

In 2004, Sultan Minerals Inc carried out structural mapping and a 600 metre diamond-drilling program on its Kena property. Earlier in the year, initial resource calculations for portions of the property were released, based on the extensive drilling results acquired previously. Using a 0.5 gram per tonne gold gold cut-off the measured and indicated resource calculation for the Kena Gold zone is 6,330,000 tonnes grading 0.969 gram per tonne gold and in the inferred category it is 1,440,000 tonnes grading 1.216 grams per tonne gold (Sultan Minerals Inc., Press Release June 7, 2004).

Between 2004 and 2011 Sultan Minerals completed small exploration programs each year, consisting of infill soil sampling, geophysical surveys, trenching and limited diamond drilling.

Altair Ventures Inc. optioned the Kena property from Sultan Minerals on December 11, 2011.

In 2012, Eagle Mapping Ltd. conducted an airborne LiDAR survey over a 15.3 square kilometre area of the Kena Property.

In June 2012, Altair Ventures announced updated resource estimates for the Kena Gold zone and the Gold Mountain zone, calculated at 0.3 gram per tonne gold cut-off. See MINFILE 082FSW379 for the Gold Mountain zone resource estimates (Press Release, Altair Ventures Inc., June 25, 2012).


2012 Kena Gold zone

Tonnes Grade

Measured 2 910 000 0.77 grams per tonne gold

Indicated 11 770 000 0.6 grams per tonne gold

Inferred 3 800 000 0.70 grams per tonne gold


In late 2012, Altair Ventures Inc. changed their name to Altair Gold Inc.

In 2012, Altair conducted a two-phase drilling program which included 17 drill holes totalling 3,529.59 metres metres on the Kena Gold occurrence. Significant results include but are not limited to 117.74 metres grading 1.15 grams per tonne in hole 12KG-01, and 41.65 metres grading 4.64 grams per tonne in hole 12KG-02 (Giroux, G., Park, V. (2013-02-07): Technical Report for the Kena Property, Nelson, BC).

In 2012 to 2013, Altair Gold Inc. conducted a rock sampling program over the property occurrences of Gold Mountain, Kena Gold, Euphrates, South Gold, and Three Friends. Of the 179 rock samples collected, eight returned gold grades greater than 0.3 grams per tonne.

In 2013, Altair Gold Inc. released an updated NI 43-101 compliant combined resource estimate for the Kena Gold zone and the Gold Mountain zone, calculated with a 0.3 gram per tonne gold cut-off grade (Press Release, Altair Gold Inc., April 11, 2013).


2013 Total Combined

Tonnes Grade

Measured 6 690 000 0.77 grams per tonne gold

Indicated 18 600 000 0.54 grams per tonne gold

Inferred 90 440 000 0.48 grams per tonne gold


In April 2021, an updated mineral resource for the Kena project, which included the Kena and Daylight properties, of 32 146 000 tonnes indicated grading 0.544 gram per tonne gold with an additional 177 508 000 tonnes inferred grading 0.486 gram per tonne gold using a 0.25 gram per tonne gold cut-off grade (Moose Mountain Technical Services [2021-07-19]: NI 43-101 Resource Estimate for the Kena and Daylight Properties).

EMPR BULL 41; 109
EMPR EXPL 1977-E46; 1978-E56; 1986-C52; 2000-43-53; 2001-45-53; 2002-51-62; 2003-34,39; 2004-71
EMPR FIELDWORK 1980, pp. 149-158; 1981, pp. 28-32, pp. 176-186; 1987, pp. 19-30; 1988, pp. 33-43; 1989, pp. 247-249; 1990, pp. 291-300; 2002, pp. 133-151
EMPR GEM 1974-72; 1975-E33, 1976-E35
EMPR MAP 7685G; RGS 1977; 8480G
EMPR OF 1988-1; *1989-11; 1991-16
EMPR PF (The Resource Stock Watch (January 2003): Sultan Minerals Inc., a well-managed resource company for 2003 and beyond; Sultan Minerals Inc. (2003): Promotional package; Sultan Minerals Inc. (2006): Promotional package)
GSC ANN RPT 1888-89, pp. 62B,63B
GSC MAP 52-13A; 1090A
GSC OF 1195
GSC P 49-22; *52-13
GCNL #189(Oct.3),#205(Oct.26), #211(Nov.3),#215(Nov.9),#225(Nov.24), #237(Dec.12), 2000
N MINER Jul.2,9, Sept.10, Oct.3,9,15,16,22, Nov.12,19,26, Dec.31, 2001; Apr.9,15, Mar.4, Sept. 11,16, Dec.2, 2002
PR REL Sultan Minerals Inc., Jan. 14,21, 2000; Jun.26, Jul.4,12,18,24, Aug.7,28, oct.2,10,15,30, Nov.8,15,23, Dec.3, 2001; Jan.9,18, Feb.25, Apr.8,30, Jun.3, Jul.11, Sept.9,25, 2002; Jan.2,13,18 21,23, Jul.14, Aug.11, Sept.8,22, Oct.3, Nov.11, Dec.4, 2003; Jun.7, Jul.14, Sept.28, Dec.13, 2004; Feb.24, Sept.14, Nov.24, 2005; Altair Ventures Inc. Jun. 25, 2012; Altair Gold Inc., *Apr. 11, 2013
V STOCKWATCH Aug.28, 1989; Oct.2,10, Nov.15, 2001
Andrew, K.P.E. and Hoy, T. (1990): Structural Models for Precious Metal Deposits in Jurassic Arc Volcanic rocks of the Rossland Group, southeastern B.C.; abstract with program, G.A.C. - M.A.C. Annual Meeting, Vancouver, B.C., p. A3
Falconbridge File
Hoy, T. and Andrew, K.P.E. (1988): Geology, geochemistry and mineral deposits of the Lower Jurassic Rossland Group, southeastern British Columbia; abstract in Twelfth District 6 Meeting, Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy, Fernie, B.C., pp. 11-12
Placer Dome File
Sultan Minerals Inc. Annual Report 2000
Giroux, G., Grunenberg, P. (2012-04-30): Technical Report on the Kena Property, Nelson, BC.
Giroux, G., Park, V. (2013-02-07): Technical Report for the Kena Property, Nelson, BC.
Giroux, G., Park, V. (2017-06-02): Technical Report for the Kena Project, Nelson, BC.
*Moose Mountain Technical Services (2021-07-19): NI 43-101 Resource Estimate for the Kena and Daylight Properties