Wealth’s Kootenay Project is within the prospective Lardeau Group, which hosts numerous high-grade gold vein and volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) deposits, including the past-producing Goldstream mine, located 90km north of Revelstoke. The initial two properties, Ledgend and Lardeau, cover some of the most prospective (95th and 99th percentile) of the anomalous nickel-cobalt silt anomalies produced by the historic regional stream sampling programmes of the B.C. Ministry of Mines. Highly anomalous gold was detected in silt samples on both properties by government sampling and was duplicated by Wealth reconnaissance silt sampling.
A third contiguous property, Goldsmith, was added in May, 2020 for its excellent potential for high-grade gold deposit based on a long history of exploration and historical small-scale production. The same favourable geological units strike across all three properties, and there is also potential for VMS mineralization at Goldsmith. All of the requisite features are present (structural complexity, greenschist grade metamorphism, listwanite alteration and demonstrated gold in the system) for the discovery of significant gold mineralization.
The Project comprises two separate claim blocks: Ledgend, totaling 1728 hectares, and Lardeau-Goldsmith, covering 6918 hectares (see map below). The properties lie within the prospective Lardeau Group, a geological division which hosts numerous VMS deposits, including the past-producing Goldstream mine located north of Revelstoke. Between 1983 and 1996, this mine produced 2.2 million tonnes of massive sulphides averaging 4.49% Cu, 3.24% Zn and 20g/t Ag. Other VMS prospects in the Lardeau Group near Goldstream include the Standard (Minfile 082M 166) and Montgomery (Minfile 082M 85) deposits.
Wealth believes the metavolcanic and metasedimentary units of the southern Lardeau Group to have excellent potential for hosting VMS deposits with significant nickel-cobalt (± copper-zinc) content, as well as high-grade deposits. Both types have relatively small footprints and the other known occurrences in the belt were either discovered in areas of good rock exposure, at high elevations, or by chance during construction of forestry roads. The heavily vegetated low-elevation regions are under-explored, and few previous workers recognized the potential for nickel-cobalt mineralization. Past exploration has focused on lead-zinc- silver replacement and vein deposits.
Listwanite type alteration (distinctive iron magnesium carbonate and green chromium micas fuchsite/mariposite) is associated with the VMS occurrences and is associated with strongly anomalous gold-in-silt values on the Ledgend and Lardeau claims. The high-grade gold occurrences on the Goldsmith property are mostly hosted by listwanite, and early workers used the green micas as an indication of better grades.
For details, please view the Kootenay Project presentation: http://wealthminerals.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/05/WML_Kootenays_presentation_2020-05.pdf
For the 2019 BC Geological Survey poster highlighting the project, please use this link: http://cmscontent.nrs.gov.bc.ca/geoscience/PublicationCatalogue/GeoFile/BCGS_GF2019-13.pdf
Note that the exploration results described here for the Kootenay Project are preliminary in nature and not conclusive evidence of the likelihood of a mineral deposit.
Initial Discovery – the Ledgend Property
The first documented occurrence of nickel-cobalt bearing massive sulphides in the region was the Ledgend massive sulphide showing, discovered by prospectors in 1981 during construction of a logging road. The showing was not subsequently staked until 1997. The mineralization was described in 1998 by the B.C. Geological Survey as outcropping massive pyrrhotite with nickel and cobalt minerals. The geologist noted that the mineralized horizon could be traced over hundreds of meters along strike. Subsequently largely overgrown, in 2016 the new owners relocated float from the discovery outcrop and grab sampling returned values of 0.15 to 0.76% nickel and 0.01 to 0.09% cobalt, as well as up to 0.53% chrome and anomalous copper and zinc. Subsequent work in 2016 included soil geochemistry covering an area 500 by 1600 metres at 25 metre spacing on 100 metre lines. This generated a nickel-cobalt anomaly 800 metres in length extending to the southeast of the showing, with the peak of the anomaly (values up to 0.84% nickel) located on a steep slope about 200 metres southeast.
In 2016 and 2017, two soil grids 1.8 kilometres apart were completed over the southern 2/3 of the claim block. (the “North” and “South” grids). The 1,218 soil samples produced significant anomalies for follow-up work in 2018, mainly in the North Grid. In addition, an outcrop near the original discovery was cleaned and chip sampled perpendicular to layering/foliation, returning 4 metres of 0.22% Ni and 161ppm Co, with a one metre sample running 0.39% Ni and 0.028% Co. A 20-30cm layer of massive to semi-massive pyrite-pyrrhotite occurs between an upper horizon of siliceous biotite schist and lower horizon of talc-tremolite schist. True widths should be close to sample widths, but might vary significantly along strike due to the tight, overturned folding.
A conformable and probably syngenetic horizon of manganiferous exhalite is associated with the massive sulfides located to date. Sampling intermittently traced this horizon throughout the length of the soil grid and beyond, from at least 400 metres to the north to some 4,500 metres to the south, where similar conformable sulfide mineralization occurs along a road cut.
In May 2018, approximately 90 line kilometres, or 375 hectares, of drone (“UAV”) airborne magnetometer geophysics was flown in order to trace the sulphide horizon. The survey successfully outlined the favourable horizon as a strong analytical signal anomaly over 1200 metres in length, coincident with Ni, Co and Cu soil geochemical anomalies, and open to the south. Ten hand-dug trenches were excavated across the Property to test the stronger soil/geophysical anomalies, concentrating on the high-priority Central Zone and East Zone. While the shallow trenching failed to uncover more massive sulphides, sampling of deeply weathered gossanous units and a siliceous, chrome-rich horizon indicated significant potential for deeper semi-massive sulphides.
Exploration at Ledgend will continue with prospecting, silt sampling and airborne geophysics over the northern portion of the claim block. The entire northern third of the Ledgend claims has no geochemical sampling or mapping, though the favourable geologic units and geochemical anomalies all strike into the area from the known massive sulphides to the south.
The mineralization at Ledgend is hosted by northwest-trending, tightly folded sericite and biotite schist, quartzite, and talc-tremolite schist of the Index Formation, a member of the Lardeau Group. Graphitic and manganiferous layers are particularly anomalous in metals, and thought to be seafloor exhalatives generated by submarine hydrothermal fluids. The rock types and style of mineralization are most similar to the Outokumpu and Talvivaara districts in central and eastern Finland, where Cu-Zn massive sulphide mineralization is hosted by similar lithologies. The largest of these deposits, Keretti, produced 28.5 Mt of ore grading 3.3% copper, 0.8% zinc, 0.25% cobalt and 0.8 g/t gold between 1954 and 1989.
Cross Section of the Keretti Mine, Outokumpu VMS District, Finland
Ongoing study as to how shale associated, Ni-Cu-Zn-Co deposits form has led to recognition of oceanic detachment faults on the modern day ocean floor that have focused large volumes of black smoker fluids along an ultramafic – volcanic (or sediment) contact. This results in metasomatic alteration of ultramafics to talc-tremolite-chlorite schists along the fault. By this process, distal venting of Ni-rich fluids can form “VMS” deposits far from a spreading ridge, in or under quiet basins where shales deposit. If fault involves a sedimentary package, the fluids can precipitate subsurface, within graphitic shales or sandstone, which are later deformed and metamorphosed to black schist and quartzite.
Deposit model for mineralization in the Lardeau Group.
The Lardeau property covers 6136 Ha west of the Lardeau River, covering prospective Index and Jowett Formation rocks. The heavily vegetated area contains three B.C. RGS Ni-Co anomalies (95th percentile) and two lesser anomalies. Limited reconnaissance work along the access roads at Lardeau has identified listwanite float in the creeks with anomalous nickel silt samples. Listwanite is an alteration product of nickel-bearing ultramafic rocks, similar to the talc and actinolite schists found hosting massive sulphide at Ledgend. There is a strong association of listwanite and gold deposits in Lardeau Group rocks, as well as other orogenic gold districts world-wide. Ultramafic rocks are also associated with the massive sulphides at the Standard showing. Most of the creeks are perpendicular to the dominant northwest trend of the geology and are ideal for detailed (200m spaced) silt sampling.
Cardero collected 126 silt samples at approximately 200-metre spacing from the numerous small creeks which cut across the regional geological trend in the fall of 2017. Three drainages (Deep, Deception, and Mat creeks) returned highly anomalous Ni (>100 ppm), Co (>30 ppm) and Cu (>50 ppm) values, over up to three kilometres of their length.
Cardero intends to fly a helicopter-borne aeromagnetic survey over the Lardeau claim. Base metal mineralization is expected to be associated with pyrrhotite, which has a strong magnetic signature. New logging roads are also planned for this area and will aid in access for prospecting and geochemical sampling.
This property covers numerous high-grade gold prospects with extensive historical exploration dating back to 1903. The property is contiguous with the Lardeau Property. Goldsmith comprises 11 claims totaling 782 hectares.
Historical workings on the property consists of at least six adits on the Bullock and Goldsmith claims plus various workings on the north side of Poplar Creek, most of which are a part of the historical Gold Park group (now all part of the Goldsmith property), all completed before 1930. Numerous veins were exposed in open cuts and short adits in greenstone and coarsely crystalline carbonate rock, the weathered product of which yielded much free gold.
No further systematic exploration was recorded until 1980-81, when Westmin conducted geological mapping, soil and rock geochemistry, trenching and 409m of diamond drilling in six short holes. From 2003 to 2009, Cream Minerals confirmed the existence of the historical high grade gold mineralization by locating and sampling many of the historical workings. They also completed trenching, soil sampling (see maps below) and 200 line-kilometres of airborne magnetics and electromagnetics. Highlights from the adit and trench sampling included 101.78g/t over 0.2m, 63.78g/t over 0.8m, and 27.63g/t over 0.35m.
Between 2016 and 2019, Black Tusk Resources conducted 32.5 line-kilometres of ground magnetic and VLF-EM surveys, trenching, rock sampling, and brushing out roads, trails and historical workings. Several northwest trending gold structures were tested along the Bullock-Goldsmith zone, with mineralization and geology indicating that they may be aligned along a controlling shear. The structure contains an abundance of quartz veining as well as sulphide minerals including arsenopyrite, pyrite, and pyrrhotite. Large (20-90kg) trench samples were subjected to Met-Solve Analytical bench-scale processing for gold recovery, which indicated that most of the samples were amenable to centrifugal gravity concentration of gold. Calculated head grades included 14.42g/t gold from the Arsenopyrite Vein, 5.34g/t gold from the Black Vein, and 5.26g/t gold from Hamburger Vein. This area, about 500m in strike length, will be the initial focus of further work.
Orogenic gold deposits (also known as mesothermal deposits, greenstone gold, slate belt gold, mother lode-type or low-sulfide gold-quartz veins) are prolific sources of gold in many parts of the world. In North America, examples include the Alaska Juneau Gold Belt, the California Mother Lode Belt, the Yellowknife Gold Camp and parts of the Abitibi Greenstone Belt of Ontario/Quebec. In British Columbia, examples include the Bralorne deposit (largest gold producer in B.C. at 4.2 million ounces), the Cassiar- McDame Lake Camp, the Atlin District, and the Rossland Camp (historical production of 2.2 million oz gold and 3.4 million oz silver).
Note that the exploration results described above are preliminary in nature and not conclusive evidence of the likelihood of a mineral deposit. All historic production, drill or sample figures quoted herein are based on prior data and reports obtained and prepared by previous operators. The Company has not completed the work necessary to verify results and the historical figures should not be relied upon as they have not been verified by a Qualified Person.
Details of Option Terms
In October 2019, Wealth negotiated an option agreement for two nickel-cobalt-copper properties in south eastern British Columbia, collectively called the “Kootenay Project”, and comprising claims totaling 7864 hectares. The underlying owners are Crockite Resources Ltd. and Dawson Geological Consultants Ltd., both corporations at arm’s length to the Company. Wealth has been granted the exclusive option to acquire a 100% interest in the Kootenay Project by issuing an aggregate of 3,000,000 common shares and CAD$1,000,000 over a four-year term, the details of which are as follows:
|Date||Cash (CAD) and Wealth Shares|
|Closing||No cash or shares|
|Year 1 Anniversary||$200,000 and 500,000 shares|
|Year 2 Anniversary||$300,000 and 1,000,000 shares|
|Year 3 Anniversary||$500,000 and 1,500,000 shares|
|Total||$1,000,000 and 3,000,000 shares|
All of the claims are subject to a 2% net smelter return royalty. Wealth will have the right to purchase ½ of the royalty applicable to the Kootenay Project for a payment of CAD$1,500,000 in cash at any time following the date that Wealth exercises its right to acquire the properties.
The Lardeau1 claim (1439 Ha) also carries a Net Profit Interest (“NPI”) of 2.5% to Cardero Resource Corporation.
In May 2020, Wealth signed the Goldsmith Property option agreement, which applies to 11 claims totaling 782 hectares. The underlying owners are Jack and Bob Denny. Wealth has been granted the exclusive option to acquire a 100% interest Goldsmith by issuing 500,000 common shares and CAD$100,000 over a four-year term, the details of which are as follows:
|Date||Cash (CAD) and Wealth Shares|
|Closing||$5,000 and 100,000 shares|
|Year 1 Anniversary||$15,000 and 100,000 shares|
|Year 2 Anniversary||$20,000 and 100,000 shares|
|Year 3 & 4 Anniversary||$30,000 and 100,000 shares|
|Total||$100,000 and 500,000 shares|
All of the claims are subject to a 2% net smelter return royalty. Wealth will have the right to purchase the royalty for a payment of CAD$1,000,000 in cash at any time following the date that Wealth exercises its right to acquire the properties.