Tambourah Metals has been following in the footsteps of a historical gold rush, but is now leading the way by expanding its interests with a solid critical mineral strategy. 

Tambourah executive chair Rita Brooks is no stranger to mining and exploration, having spent well over three decades in the industry since the gold boom back in the 80s.

The company itself, Tambourah Metals (ASX:TMB), is named after the historic Tambourah Goldfield in Western Australia’s Eastern Pilbara region which was mined in the late 1800’s.

At one point, a small gold rush town resided there with more than 30 individual prospects and gold mines scattered around the place.

“People used it as a stopping off point between journeying from Newman through to Port Hedland – a battery was even erected but by 1899 it was out of action, leading to a rapid population decline,” Brooks explains.

“By 1910 there were only three gold shows in operation, and it languished for many years but fast forward to the last century, a lot of the small holdings were sampled, and the tailings were treated.

“As a result, I picked it up in 2013 – 2014 and consolidated the area – so now all the gold mines in the Tambourah Goldfield are under the one umbrella.”

Ground ripe for gold pickings

One of TMB’s two advanced gold projects is the Tambourah Gold Project near Marble Bar in Western Australia’s Pilbara region where total production to the end of 1977 reached 5,247oz at an average recovered grade of 30 g/t.

Back then, Brooks says miners targeted outcropping ‘reef’ mineralisation, but the majority of the prospective rocks are obscured by thin layer of cover, just like De Grey’s (ASX:DEG) Hemi discovery.

In 2019, Brook’s private company Baracus completed 15 drill holes at Tambourah which confirmed significant gold over a 3.5km stretch, ‘open’ at depth and in all directions.

Because these quartz reefs were buried, they have never been worked, Brooks says.

“Potentially we believe there could be an extension to an old open cut mine, similar to how Penny West was extended from the old workings.”

The other gold project is Cheela, which is smack bang between Northern Star’s (ASX:NST) 1moz Paulsen’s mine and Kalamazoo’s (ASX:KZR) 1.6moz Mt Olympus mine, along the same major mineralised corridor.

There has been limited exploration to date at Cheela, but historic intersections — like 16m at 4.75g/t – along a 7.5km long mineralised stretch are very promising.

“There’s a substantial prize there at Cheela but we will be drilling there at the end of quarter one next year once we have completed a heritage survey,” Brooks adds.

The Tambourah lithium story

TMB’S critical mineral strategy has developed since listing on the ASX back in August 2021 to focus on the historical lithium-tin-tantalum prospects which surround the Tambourah Project and have never been explored.

“The Tambourah Goldfield is only roughly 70 kilometres south of Pilbara Minerals’ Pilgangoora Project and several of the producing mines in the area are against the same granite and basalt which hosts the lithium pegmatites of Pilgangoora,” Brooks says.

“The pegmatites are parallel to the gold workings, but our focus now is on exploring the contact between the basalt and the granite where the pegmatites feed in.”

According to Brooks, one of the major indicators for lithium prospectivity – which is also the same for Pilbara Minerals (ASX:PLS), is the fact the ground was explored for tantalum back in 1930s.

“Tantalum as well as tin were both found in the creeks, again on a small prospecting scale in the region, and there’s several other companies also investigating this and drilling so that is our intention as well,” she says.

New ground at Russian Jack

Shortly after listing, the company applied for tenure over the Russian Jack Project, about 40km south of the flagship Tambourah Gold Project.

“The pegmatites are up to 500 metres in length and up to 8 metres high – so the drill targets are significant, we hope to begin drilling at the end of quarter one or quarter two next year.”

The Russian Jack tenement package consists of four tenements covering an area of approximately 505km2 including an area of more than 320km2 of the underexplored granitic Split Rocks Super-suite.

According to Brooks, this is where the company will focus its attention on fast-tracking development following the identification of multiple pegmatites from anomalous assay results identified via GSWA mapping in the northern part of the project.

Assay results for these samples reported grades of up to 1420ppm lithium and 1930 rubidium.

Julimar Nickel-Copper-PGE Project

TMB’s Julimar North Project is only a stone’s throw from Chalice Mining’s (ASX:CHN)

Julimar discovery, Caspin’s Yarawinda deposit, and Liontown’s (ASX:LTR) recent discovery at the Moora copper-gold project around 120km north of Perth.

A helicopter-based airborne magneto-telluric survey over priority targets at Bolgart, Yerecoin kicked off in October with results expected in roughly six weeks’ time.

“The second part of our strategy – since we can’t work over Christmas in the north is to carry out activities down at Julimar.

“Landowner negotiations to enable is to undertake drilling of targets identified in the airborne surveys are continuing.”

The Achilles Project 

The Achilles project, 220km north of Laverton, is prospective for hosting nickel-copper-PGE and gold mineralisation however recent data compilation and WAMEX reports have highlighted anomalous REE assay grades of up to 579ppm TREO in historical drilling at the Windidda South prospect.

This wide-spaced drilling by Creasy Group in 2007 was tested for multiple elements as REEs are often good pathfinders for gold mineralisation.

As such, the 4m composite samples could conceal individual high-grade REE zones.

While the historical drilling tested an area of about 1,600m by 900m, the extent of the prospective saprolite within the larger project area is unknown.

It is also furthering its REE ambitions with applications for three new licences at Adam Range about 30km east of Laverton.




This article was developed in collaboration with Tambourah Metals, 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.