By NICK STEWART
With every drill hole intersecting gold mineralization, Kodiak Exploration Ltd. has begun to realize the untapped potential in the Geraldton-Beardmore camp.
“Relative to the property, we’ve barely scratched the tip of the iceberg, but we have done enough now that we’re into high-grade chutes, and we’re going to define them and follow them out to see where they go,” says company president Bill Chornobay.
“We literally have just barely scratched the surface there.”
Located 120 kilometres northeast of Thunder Bay, the 1,400-square-kilometre Hercules project site -- what Kodiak’s president refers to as “a province unto itself” -- hosts a series of high-grade gold systems, most of which are located in a 30-square-kilometre area.
In this space, a handful of new systems have been discovered within the last year, one of which has helped drive the flurry of property acquisitions Kodiak has pursued throughout the last year, making it the dominant landholder in the area.
Known as the Golden Mile, this gold-bearing system has an indicated strike length of more than four kilometres, and is open to depth and along strike.
Nearly half the grab samples collected there have returned more than 10 grams per tonne (g/t) gold, while one hole released in mid-January has intersected 203 g/t over 2.9 metres. Overall, its gold mineralization is open to depth and along strike, giving Chornobay reason to believe that the 'Mile' represents a significant find for the company.
“It’s not often in this exploration game, which is extremely high risk, that you come across something like the 'Mile',” he says. “It’s brand new, and it’s prolific. It’s an incredible new gold showing, and all the early indications are extremely positive.”
Kodiak is expected to spend up to $15 million in 2008 in order to move forward on a 60,000-metre drill program at its Hercules property, where three drill rigs are already turning.
Much of this drilling will focus on the highly prospective Golden 'Mile' in order to develop a better understanding of its full geometry and scale. To this end, one rig will be set up in the central part of the Mile, a pristine kilometre-long section that has never been drilled. Another will work to follow up an earlier drill hole on the southeastern extent, which turned up 54 g/t gold over two metres and remains open.
Rigs may later move to develop a similar understanding of the nearby Yellow Brick Road zone and any other parallel structures identified through surface exploration.
Another drill will also likely be moved to the nearby Marino system. This is one of several northwest-trending veins between the Golden Mile and Yellow Brick Road where exploratory drilling has had positive results, including a shallow hole intersected 38.47 g/t gold over 1.12 metres.
A surface exploration program is also set to begin in May, with further prospecting and stripping due to take a more thorough look at the property’s core area.
One possible target for further stripping includes the Golden Gate vein, located three kilometres to the southwest of the Golden Mile. This area is a new parallel structure discovered a mere two days before the onset of the snowy season, meaning it still requires a great deal of work to understand its potential.
The Hercules project has certainly caught the imagination of the investment community, which in November funded the company for $54 million in response to an offering for $40 million.
Chornobay attributes this spike of interest not only to the size of the vein system, but also because of where it’s located.
“We control an unexplored environment with infrastructure in a country that is a good place to do business, and it’s stable,” Chornobay says. “If it continues to unfold in the right direction, we have the right eyes watching us now.”