The Shamrock zone refers to a bulk tonnage gold exploration target on the Ketza River property. The target is a broad rusty weathered area underlain by a well bedded sequence of interbedded Lower Cambrian phyllite, argillite, quartzite and carbonate rocks that host gold bearing stock work quartz-sulphide veining and alteration. Figure 1 shows the regional geology and mineral occurrences of the district. The Shamrock zone is located near the centre of the Ketza Uplift, listed as number 1 on the map. The zone gets its name from the shamrock green colouration due to the widespread presence of scorodite in the vein material scattered in the talus on the hill side.
Exploration in the area began in 1984 and includes airborne geophysical, soil and rock geochemical surveys, prospecting, trenching, reverse circulation drilling and diamond drilling. During the major drilling programs in the area in 1986 and 1987 (14 diamond drill holes - 880 metres and 72 reverse circulation holes - 4616 metres) sampling concentrated on massive sulphide veining. Routine sampling of disseminated sulphide and alteration zones was rarely undertaken in occasional drill holes. Drill hole depths were shallow rarely exceeding 100 metres and concentrated in the area of the three main showings. Hemlo Gold drilled three widely spaced diamond drill holes in 1995 totalling 490 metres. The 1996 drilling program by VG totalled 3079 metres in 18 HQ diamond drill holes over an area of 1200 by 500 metres.
A two square kilometre gold in soil geochemical anomaly coincides with a visual colour anomaly in rusty weathering altered and veined mineralized bedrock. The soil anomaly contains gold values greater than 100 ppb with a major portion of samples in the anomalous area greater than 500 ppb. At one site, the gold analysis in soil returned 31,500 ppb. Within the anomaly, grab samples of quartz-scorodite material typically assay 1 - 4 g/t and up to 15 g/t (+100 g/t at 3M) gold. The area encompasses four small vein and quartz stock work occurrences discovered by previous operators. Minor gold production was achieved in 1990 from oxides in the surface weathered zones of three showings (Gully Vein, QB stock work, and 3M zone). Figure 2 shows the location of the occurrences, drill hole collars, and partial rock sample results in the Shamrock area.
The mineralization of the Gully zone is massive sulphide (pyrrhotite, pyrite, and arsenopyrite) in multipe five metre thick shallow plunging replacement bodies. The area was drilled along 120 metres to 80 metres down plunge and remains open in all directions. The gold grades in sulphide are generally low with values from 1 - 9 g/t. Disseminated pyrite and alteration in the footwall and hanging wall rocks were not routinely sampled during the program.
A reverse circulation drill hole in 1987 produced a significant intersection of 105 metres grading 3.7 g/t gold in quartz-sericite-pyrite mineralization on the east side of the QB vein mineralization. Three irregular, shallow-dipping vein stock work zones occur within the interval that appear to plunge at a moderate angle to the east-southeast. The mineralized zones within the section are from 15 - 25 metres thick with average grades of greater than 5 g/t gold.
The 3 M zone was drilled in a series of shallow close spaced holes which were unable to explain the extent of high grade gold float located in the down slope talus dispersion train. The float consisted of green scorodite clay with remnant quartz grains and arsenopyrite and gold grades of 93 - 994 g/t.
The North Face area encompasses low grade stringer stockwork and disseminated alteration zones outcropping in the cliff face at several locations. The mineralization occurs within strongly deformed phyllite units interbedded with weakly calcareous siltstone and sandstone. The mineralized occurrences occur in the upper limit of a portion of the broadly dispersed gold in soil/talus anomaly. Several drill holes tested a portion ofthe area in 1996. The Peg/Fury target is highlighted by a very large orange weathered ferricrete deposit on the hillside. Low grade gold values were intersected in the bedrock by percussion drill holes below the ferricrete deposit. The holes encountered narrow gold bearing quartz-arsenopyrite veins and pyritized sediments.