North Stawell Minerals has extended mineralisation beneath the historic Darlington Mine only 6km north of the multi million-ounce Stawell Gold Mine as well gaining greater understanding of the target’s strong potential.

North Stawell Minerals (ASX:NSM) has wasted no time in testing the area after gaining access to the central portion of the Darlington target in February this year.

The diamond drill program in the gold-rich Stawell Corridor was designed to follow up on the highly encouraging near-surface air core program results announced in March.

Now results from the two-hole, 546.7m program extend mineralisation down-dip and down-plunge, and it remains open in all directions.

Results include 2m at 1.29 grams per tonne (g/t) of gold from 241m and 1.5m at 4.24 g/t gold from 140.5m.

The Darlington Mine produced 2,347oz of gold at a high grade of 18.2g/t before work stopped in back 1893 – well over a century before modern exploration and mining techniques.

The latest drilling also builds on NSM’s prior success beneath the Darlington mine, including 3m at 11g/t gold from 60m and 6m at 3.45 g/t gold from only 42.0m.

Golden link

Also highly significant is the intersection of an altered basalt at 254m (100m beneath mineralisation) as basalts play an important role in the mineral system at Stawell Gold Mine. Using the Stawell model which NSM explores against, Darlington may be a splay off the deeper basalt. This means Darlington mineralisation may continue to depth, linking with the basalt structures.

As well as being only 6km northeast of Stawell Gold Mind, Darlington is immediately west of the Coongee Fault – a major regional fault that also represents the eastern boundary of the Eastern Stawell Corridor. This is a 5km wide zone hosting multiple northwest trending areas of mineralisation occurring in a north-northwest trend.

North Stawell Minerals Chief Executive Russell Krause said: “Two diamond drill holes testing the down-dip and down-plunge extents have both intersected gold mineralisation, expanding the Darlington target to approximately 250m x 150m sub-vertical, planar target, with evidence of high grade plunging shoots within it.

“Both drill holes are stepouts, open in all directions, and further drilling may further expand the geometry of the Darlington Target.”

Krause added that the Stawell Gold Mine is characterised by depth-persistant (1,600m) gold mineralisation that occurs principally on the margins of a large basalt accumulation, but also includes mineralisation splays from the top of the deeper basalt into surrounding sedimentary rocks.

“Previously, the evidence for basalts at depth at Darlington was from interpretation of high-resolution geophysics.

“However, the case for Darlington to be interpreted as a splay above a basalt (that is a Stawell-type gold system) has been significantly strengthened from this latest drilling, with altered basalt intersected 100m beneath mineralisation.

“Determining the relationship between Darlington and the deeper basalt has significant potential to elevate Darlington’s gold potential as well as focus on-going exploration.”

A rich pipeline

Krause said Darlington was one of five key prospects NSM had been prioritising after 18 months of regional work throughout its tenement portfolio to build a robust exploration pipeline.

Other priorities include Wildwood, Caledonia, Forsaken, Challenger and Lubeck Tip. Wildwood has had its Mineral Resource increased in June with additional drilling.

Along with Darlington, Caledonia is also being drilled at depth to determine continuity.

Forsaken, Challenger and Lubeck Tip are other priority regional targets for NSM, with encouraging near-surface mineralisation.

NSM also has identified a number of other targets, but is prioritising its six key areas.




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.