North Stawell Minerals has uncovered a high-grade shoot whilst drilling at the past producing Darlington mine in the gold-rich Stawell Corridor.

North Stawell Minerals (ASX:NSM) has reported the results of a seven-hole aircore drilling program at the Darlington prospect, which returned high-grade, well defined mineralisation similar to that at the 5Moz Stawell gold mine.

Top hits from the program comprised 3m at 11 grams per tonne (g/t) from 60m, including 1m at 17.7g/t from 62m; 6m at 3.45g/t from 42m; and 3m at 2.2g/t from 45m.

All drillholes returned significant grades and five of the holes ended in anomalous gold, which CEO Russell Krause said was an encouraging indication of more widespread mineralisation.

“Multiple plunging mineralisation shoots at Darlington fits the NSM exploration models for Stawell-type gold, which includes quartz-hosted gold mineralisation ramping off a basalt buttress at depth, and into the metasedimentary rocks,” he explained.

“Pursuing these targets to depth has potential to trace mineralisation to the deeper, basalt-proximal mineralisation that characterises the impressive mineralisation at Stawell.”

The historic Darlington mine once produced 2,347oz of gold at an impressive 18.2g/t and contains the southernmost mineralisation in the highly gold-prospective eastern Stawell Corridor, which also hosts the mineralisation at the Stawell (4.9Moz) and Wonga (294,000oz) mines as well as the inferred resource at the Wildwood prospect (55,000oz).

“The North Stawell Mineral exploration team has worked hard to secure land access to the central Darlington prospect since the focus on regional programs commenced,” Krause said.

Krause noted that there was no drilling further down-plunge to the southeast that was deep enough to effectively test the target beyond this new, exciting gold intercept.

“The Darlington prospect is approximately 700m trend and open north and south, with an interpreted higher grade, plunging shoot at its centre (daylighting near the historic mine),” he said.

The high-grade shoot is untested and open down plunge.

“The drilling program has effectively determined the shoot geometry, significantly consolidating understanding of the mineralisation,” Krause said.

“This is another success for NSM’s phase two drilling – which is specifically designed to determine mineralisation geometry in preparation for deeper assessment of key targets.”

Krause said the deeper intercepts outside the identified high-grade shoot were interpreted as possible parallel structures, and their gold potential would be part of further drill planning.

A strong pipeline of targets

North Stawell has amassed a pipeline of over 60 potential targets in the Stawell Corridor and has been busy assessing 20 of the highest priority targets.

Peter Arden, the managing director at Groundwork – an independent resources research and geological consultancy, recently released a research report on North Stawell Minerals highlighting that the 30,000m of drilling done in FY22 had delivered some very promising new prospects.

“The regional drilling defined eight prospects under cover and they, along with two outcropping prospects that were old mining areas, are now getting follow-up phase two infill and extension drilling,” he said.

Last month, North Stawell successfully doubled the Caledonia prospect gold trend after intersecting more significant mineralisation that also showed strong similarities to the nearby Stawell gold mine.

Caledonia also sits within the prospective Darlington – Germania structural trend, which runs for 10km and includes four historic mines and three high-potential prospects – Darlington, Caledonia, and Wimmera Park.

Arden has assigned a 65c share price valuation, which is over four times its current share price of 15c.

“NSM continues to represent a very attractive gold exploration opportunity from a combination of favourable factors,” Arden said.

These factors included the company’s large, highly prospective, province scale tenement position in a tier-1 jurisdiction adjacent to a very friendly, major gold operation with potentially available milling capacity.

North Stawell has its foot on of ground that includes the same structures and geology that form the foundation of the Stawell gold mine, immediately to the south of the company’s ground.




This article was developed in collaboration with North Stawell Minerals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.