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File Created: 24-Jul-1985 by BC Geological Survey (BCGS)
Last Edit:  22-May-2013 by Karl A. Flower (KAF)

Summary Help Help

NMI 092F1 Au2
Name VILLALTA, BETHEA 1-4 Mining Division Nanaimo
BCGS Map 092F008
Status Developed Prospect NTS Map 092F01W
Latitude 049º 05' 24'' UTM 10 (NAD 83)
Longitude 124º 28' 25'' Northing 5438506
Easting 392412
Commodities Gold, Silver, Iron, Zinc, Copper, Lead Deposit Types B10 : Gossan Au-Ag
B09 : Karst-hosted Fe, Al, Pb-Zn
Tectonic Belt Insular Terrane Wrangell
Capsule Geology

The Villalta occurrence is located is located in the headwaters of the Nanaimo River, approximately 3.5 kilometres south of Labour Day Lake.

The area is underlain by volcanics, clastic sediments and limestone of the Paleozoic Sicker and Buttle Lake groups. Poorly sorted conglomerates and hematitic mudstones of the Upper Cretaceous Comox Formation (Nanaimo Group) unconformably overlie the limestones. Tertiary porphyritic dacite intrudes the conglomerates to the north.

The Sicker Group rocks include volcanic breccia, tuff, andesite, argillite and chert of the Devonian Nitinat and McLaughlin Ridge formations. The overlying crinoidal limestone, with minor chert and tuff, likely belongs to the Upper Pennsylvanian to Lower Permian Mount Mark Formation (Buttle Lake Group). These rocks are tightly folded with an axial trend of 135 degrees and 20 degree plunge to the northwest.

Extensive areas of powdery to massive hematite with gold values, occur at the top of the limestone unit, in a well-developed paleokarst topography. The stratabound hematite measures 110 by 30 by 14 metres and appears to lie in a north-northeast trending depression, which is possibly fault-bounded. Randomly distributed massive sulphide bodies, comprised of pyrite, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite, arsenopyrite, marcasite and minor galena and magnetite, which occur in the limestone, are the likely source for the hematite zone. Other minerals include siderite, calcite, quartz, serpentine, goethite and minor ilvaite.

The gold-bearing hematite deposit (Villalta Zone) was discovered in 1976 by E. Specogna. In 1980, Specogna formed Canamin Resources Ltd. and proceeded with a six hole drill program, totalling 394.4 metres, on the Villalta Zone. An eight hole drill program in 1981 further tested the hematite zone. A drill hole (V-2) assayed 126 grams per tonne gold, 19.2 grams per tonne silver, 7.65 per cent zinc and 0.76 per cent copper over 30 centimetres (Assessment Report 8458).

Asarco optioned the claims in 1982 and conducted a program of soil geochemical sampling and bulk sampling, which assayed an average of 6.84 grams per tonne gold, 10.3 grams per tonne silver, 0.47 per cent copper and 53 per cent iron for a thirty four cubic metre sample (Assessment Report 26778).

In 1983, Falconbridge optioned the property and over the next year completed programs of geological mapping, geochemical sampling, geophysical surveys and 666 metres of diamond drilling. In 1986 and 1987 Canamin completed additional drilling and to the tnorth intersected 10.7 metres of 2.06 grams per tonne gold and 9.9 grams per tonne silver, including 1.0 metre of 8.5 grams per tonne gold and 22.3 grams per tonne silver (Vancouver Stockwatch July 13, 1987).

Unclassified reserves are 22,677 tonnes grading 4.11 grams per tonne gold and 35 per cent iron. Tonnage ranges from 13,606 to 22,677 tonnes grading from 2.39 to 4.11 grams per tonne gold (MDAP - Prospectus, June 1991, C.F. Millar).

In 2001, Homegold Resources completed a program of preliminary geological mapping and prospecting on the area as the Bethea 1-4 claims.

EMPR ASS RPT 7792, 7953, 8458, 8687, *10789, 12128, *13236, 13945
15939, *16719, *26778
EMPR EXPL 1977-109; 1978-126; 1979-128; 1980-164-165; 1982-141;
EMPR FIELDWORK *1980, pp. 112-114; 1988 pp.61-74
EMPR MAP 65 (1989)
EMPR OF 1987-2; 1988-24; *1989-6; 1992-1
EMPR P 1989-3
EMPR PF (Property maps; Company Letter, Project Revision, 1988;
District Geologist notes; Specogna, M. (1986): Report for the
Mine Development Steering Committee for CanaMin Resources Ltd.; Various photos, Falconbridge, circa 1980)
GSC MAP 17-1968; 49-1963
GSC OF 463; 1272
GSC P 68-50; 79-30
CIM Vol.83 No.935, March 1990 pp.125-135
GCNL #43, 1985; #96,#115,#146, 1986; #156, 1987; #135, 1988;
#138(Jul.18), 1990
N MINER Sept.10, 1981; Aug.2, 1984; Jun.9,16, 1986
V STOCKWATCH Jul.13, 1987; Nov.17, 1995
Hudson, R. (1997): A Field Guide to Gold, Gemstone & Mineral Sites of
British Columbia, Vol. 1: Vancouver Island, p. 132
Today's Market Line #066,#140,#180, 1984