Highlights:

  • Near-surface copper mineralisation identified over 34km of strike
  • 5 High-priority targets identified from historical data review and compilation
  • Significant trenching results, including: 1.6m @ 3.8% (Birthday Ridge), 1.5m @ 4.8% Cu (Napoleon Prospect), 2.7m @ 3.1% Cu (Wyacca Prospect)
  • Significant drilling results, including: 23.4m @ 0.61% Cu from 3.4m (Birthday Ridge) and 57.9m @ 0.27% Cu from 33.5m (Wyacca Prospect)
  • Significant gravity and magnetic anomalies identified from reprocessing and 3D inversion modelling recently completed by Taruga – not targeted by historical exploration
  • Complete stream sediment sample coverage of MCCP – multiple >3km2 copper and zinc anomalies identified

Project overview

The Mt Craig Copper Project (MCCP) (EL6541) is situated within the Adelaide Geosyncline, which lies within the G2 structural corridor which hosts all South Australia’s past and present major copper projects including Prominent Hill, Olympic Dam and Carrapateena. The AGS has hosted over 800 historical copper mines or workings, and multiple polymetallic mines since the 1840’s. Furthermore, the MCCP hosts the highest concentration of copper occurrences in the AGS.

Copper-gold associations are common within the AGS, with many of the old copper mining ventures not recognising the presence of gold. Modern exploration has continued to uncover significant large-scale, polymetallic, base and precious metal potential around historical mining regions within the AGS, which have undergone limited exploration and development since initial mining ceased in the late 1800’s. 

MCCP Prospects:

  • Birthday Ridge: The Birthday Ridge Prospect is defined by a NW trending, 3.5km x 2km copper in stream sediment anomaly (>50ppm Cu) which lies perpendicular to and transgresses the Worrumba Anticline.
  • Napoleon: The Napoleon Prospect is defined by a NW trending, 3km x 1km copper in stream sediment anomaly of >50ppm Cu which lies perpendicular and coincides with the Worrumba Anticline at its south-eastern margin.
  • Wyacca: The Wyacca Mine (Cu) is located in the northern portion of the MCCP and was the first operational small-scale mine in the MCCP area.
  • Hawk: A significant gold in soil anomaly covering 1000m x 500m with anomalous gold and copper drill results has been identified from soil sampling and shallow drilling at the Hawk Prospect in the NE of MCCP.
  • Mt Craig & Morgan’s Creek: The Mt Craig and Morgan’s Creek Prospects are associated with significant copper in stream sediment sample anomalies (>50ppm Cu) in an area where at least 10 artisanal copper workings were mined previously.
  • Iron King: The Iron King Prospect is coincident with a large magnetic anomaly adjacent the Worrumba Anticline in the northern portion of the MCCP.

Project History:

Mining records have shown that copper and to a lesser extent silver, zinc and gold were mined from a minimum of 32 historical mines and artisanal workings over 34km within the MCCP area since early 1860’s. All mineral occurrences are associated with the Worrumba Anticline which is a highly complex fold structure in which dolomites and sediments have been upturned and intruded extensively by deep seated doleritic breccias along its fold axis and flanks as shown in Figure 1. These breccias and dolerites are strongly associated with copper, silver, zinc and gold mineralisation and are potentially highlighted as magnetic and sometimes gravity anomalies along the periphery to the west of the Worrumba Anticline as shown in Figure 2.

Fig 1: MCCP Project Outline showing Priority Exploration Targets, Historical Copper and Gold Mineral Occurrences & Mines, and the Main Structural Feature being the Worrumba Anticline

Fig 2: MCCP Project Outline showing Priority Exploration Targets on the Recently Completed Gravity and Magnetic Inversion Modelling, and the Main Structural Feature being the Worrumba Anticline

Five priority target areas were identified in the historical and geophysical data assessment and modelling as shown in Figure 1. The Wyacca, Birthday Ridge and Napoleon Prospects have excellent copper potential and have been drilled mostly at shallow levels. The Hawk Prospect is associated with a strong gold in soil anomaly and has been drilled where the target could be accessed using existing tracks in the area. The Mt Craig and Morgan’s Creek Prospects are defined by strong copper in stream sediment anomalies with associated geophysical highs but have not been drilled. A strong zinc in stream sediment of more than 9km² has been defined in the northern portion of the Mt Craig target area. 

Exploration Plan:

The MCCP has had no modern systematic regional exploration with a poor understanding of controls on copper and base metal mineralisation around the 50-odd copper workings associated with the highly complex Worrumba Anticline. The majority of holes were RAB or RC and were only drilled to shallow depths between 1968 and 2006.

Taruga plans to conduct a field reconnaissance program during Q1 2021 as part of its ongoing project review and mineralisation modelling, which will be followed by drill testing of priority targets. Land access negotiations are currently being completed with Traditional Owners who hold Native Title land over a portion of the project area.