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Mining & Resources

Major new gold breakthrough a near-term possibility – says MD of Falcon Metals

9 Dec 2022, by Amy Sarcevic

After a patient wait for farmers to reap their late harvest, Falcon Metals is soon set to resume drilling beneath the paddocks northwest of Bendigo, Victoria – and Managing Director Tim Markwell is hopeful about what his team will unearth.

The several phases of infill drilling that took place in previous field seasons revealed several high-priority targets with some “very impressive gold intersections”.

A highlight was the 40m @ 2.8g/t AU at Falcon’s Ironbark East Prospect, which it announced in July 2022. This included several 10+g/t Au intercepts down the hole, plus some coarse visible gold in the first two metres of the intercept.

With large swathes of ground still to explore, Tim hopes Falcon’s exploration activity at Pyramid Hill Gold Project will lead to the company making the next major gold discovery in Victoria.

“At Falcon Metals, we are focussed on making big and exciting discoveries,” he said ahead of the Victoria Gold Mining & Exploration Conference, hosted by Informa Connect.

“Based on what we have seen so far, we have every reason to believe our current exploration targets are highly prospective. That is why we have committed to such an expansive operation. We expect to be drilling more than 50,000m of aircore, in addition to a targeted diamond drill program, making it one of the largest Victoria has seen since the land rush of last decade.”

Historically gold explorers have avoided the ground north of Bendigo given the build-up of sedimentary cover from the Murray River Basin. But as primary mineralisation gets harder to find in the traditional goldfields of Bendigo, Ballarat and Fosterville, some are moving further north to chase potentially hidden treasures under the Murray Basin cover.

Figures suggests these higher hanging fruits are plentiful. To date, Victoria has contributed 1.5 percent of the world’s gold from only 0.15 percent of its land mass. In other words, Victoria’s gold endowment appears to be 2 orders of magnitude (100 richer) than the global average. In fact, Geoscience Victoria estimates there may be as much undiscovered gold throughout the state as there is already extracted.

Tim agrees, but says the next wave of discovery will require patient and systematic exploration.

“We definitely need to have a more systematic approach to prospectivity, now that we have extracted most of the primary mineralisation in the areas of outcrop. We believe there is an abundance of opportunity out there – we may even be sitting on it right now – but the pickings certainly won’t be as easy as we’ve had it over the decades,” he said.

To prospect its current site, Falcon Metals relied initially on the regional gravity data, to help locate secondary structures on major faults – the most likely host to significant gold mineralisation. It then used reconnaissance aircore drilling to close in on areas that looked interesting.

“History tells us that it isn’t the major faults themselves, but rather the splay structures that sit on them that give insight on where to prospect under the cover. We then look for low level anomalies from our reconnaissance aircore drilling that indicate proximity to an ore body. We can then vector in on the high-grade mineralisation with infill drilling,” Tim said.

“We go back to drill in between the lines and get an orientation of any high-grade mineralisation. We then commence diamond drilling when we know where to drill optimally,” he said.

Around the corner, Tim says no areas are off limits, except those in which drilling may impinge on local communities.

“We are interested in any greenfield site our data points to – with some exclusions of course. Often we pursue areas that are further away from communities, typically within large broad-acre farms. This inevitably means less people,” he said.

“Ultimately we are looking for the next major discovery and don’t want to get distracted by targets with too many obstacles around them. The best place to find that is under cover in areas that haven’t been looked at before.”

Falcon’s first drill season was completed in mid-2022 with the next phase starting in December 2022 and likely to run to May 2023.

Tim is due to present at the Victoria Gold Mining & Exploration Conference in February 2023 – by which time he hopes first results will be available.

“We are looking forward to sharing updates with the audience on what our drilling has unearthed so far,” he said.

The 2023 Victoria Gold Mining & Exploration conference will be held on 22-23 February at the Rendezvous Hotel Melbourne.

Joining Tim on the stage are key industry representatives from the Minerals Council of Victoria, Agnico Eagle, Southern Cross Gold and many more.

Learn more and register your place here.

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