GEOPACIFIC Resources Limited has commenced a major regional exploration programme at the Woodlark gold project (Woodlark) in Milne Bay Province.

Since taking over Woodlark in late 2016, Geopacific has substantially increased the Woodlark Reserve through a focussed development drilling campaign. With the Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) progressing on budget and on schedule and the completion of a capital raising, Geopacific says it is now poised to add significant value to Woodlark through an aggressive exploration campaign.

The primary focus of the current exploration campaign is to target discoveries of additional deposits in the corridors between known deposits, with much of this work exploring beneath shallow sedimentary cover.

“We met expectations with the release of the Pre-Feasibility Study, which supports the development of Woodlark as a robust, stand-alone project capable of delivering over 100,000 ounces per annum over 10 years. The DFS is moving forward and will further enhance the project economics. The time is now right to commence exploration to show that the larger goldfield will offer more resources,” Geopacific managing director Ron Heeks said.

“We are mandated to deliver upside through regional exploration and have a clear plan to do so. Work has begun at the promising Great Northern area which sits on a structural corridor that’s evident in geophysics, has surface geochemistry and limited drilling that produced results of up to 20m@4.39g/t Au.”

“Typically, epithermal orebodies occur in clusters around a central, deeper mineralising source. The mineralisation gets to surface through corridors of weakness caused by faulting in the overlying rocks. Geophysics has allowed us to identify several corridors that are known to be mineralised but have not been fully explored. This work begins now.”

Drilling is planned to recommence on the Great Northern prospect, near the intersection of major northwest and northeast striking structures where aeromagnetic imaging shows large areas of magnetite destruction, forming magnetic lows. Mineralisation at the nearby Kulumadau deposit sits within an identical magnetic low; a typical feature of epithermal gold mineralisation (Figure 1).

Magnetic imaging of the 5km-long gold corridor between Great Northern and the 623,000-ounce Busai deposit shows a continuation of structural features and magnetic lows that form a high priority target area. The gold corridor is unexplored due to the presence of thin limestone covering the prospective volcanic rocks, making surface sampling unsuitable (Figure 2).
Historical drilling at Great Northern intersected significant zones of gold mineralisation including: 26m @ 2.06g/t Au; 20m @ 4.39g/t Au and 18m @ 4.40g/t Au

Once Great Northern has been drilled, exploration will extend along the corridor southeast towards the priority Eastern Target, where magnetic imaging shows numerous intersecting structural features with an associated magnetic low under shallow limestone cover. Exploration will be ongoing.