Geology & Mineralization
The Blackwater project is located within the Stikine Terrane of the Intermontane Belt of central British Columbia. The Stikine Terrane comprises Jurassic to early Tertiary magmatic arc and related sedimentary rocks.
Regional Geologic Setting
District Geologic Setting
The Blackwater deposit is hosted by a sequence of intermediate and felsic volcanics belonging to the late Cretaceous Kasalka Group. These rocks are overlain by Eocene age post-mineral volcanics belonging to the Ootsa Lake Group and underlain by basinal clastic rocks of the late Jurassic Bowser Lake Group. A well-developed system of northeasterly, northwesterly, and northerly striking faults crosscuts the entire package and acts as a principal control to gold-silver mineralization in the region. Quaternary glacial, colluvial, and fluvial deposits obscure most of the bedrock within the immediate project area.
Gold and silver mineralization at Blackwater occurs within an intermediate sulphidation, epithermal gold-silver system that occurs within two kilometres of a cluster of mineralized porphyry intrusive centers belonging to the same late Cretaceous Kasalka stratigraphic group. Host rocks within the deposit are pervasively hydrofractured, pyritized, and altered to a mixture of silica and sericite. Mineralization is typified by gold-bearing polymetallic sulphides (pyrite, sphalerite, marcasite, pyrrhotite) as disseminations and porosity infillings within the fragmental unit of the deposit. Mineralization is strongly controlled by northwest and northeast trending zones of tectonic brecciation and shearing. The deposit is bounded by post-mineral graben-forming faults to the north and south. A major north-south trending fault also transects the ore body, subdividing it into two distinct geological domains integral to the mineral resource block model.
Deposit Geology - Plan View
Deposit Geology – N-S Cross Section
Deposit Geology – E-W Cross Section
Drill Holes & Gold-Equivalent Grade Thickness
Following its discovery by Richfield Ventures in late 2009, New Gold acquired the Blackwater project in 2011 and conducted an aggressive program of exploration and development that resulted in the successful delineation of a mineral reserve containing 8.2 million ounces of gold and 61 million ounces of silver, plus additional measured and indicated resources containing 1.1 million ounces of gold and 12.7 million ounces of silver. Since completing the feasibility study for the project in 2014, New Gold has identified multiple areas of prospective gold mineralization across its 1,100-square-kilometre property package. New Gold is currently directing its focus toward exploring for additional gold and silver resources within several kilometres of the known epithermal-style mineralization at Blackwater and the recently discovered porphyry copper-molybdenum mineralization to the south.