BIG SANDY focuses on the faulted-off top of a 25-square-kilometer Laramide porphyry system located along the Bagdad-Perseverance-Mineral Park trend. The discovery of several unusual surficial copper occurrences lead the Company to believe that they are linked to a shallowly covered porphyry copper deposit.
Big Sandy project is a large , truncated porphyry copper-molybdenum prospect located in northwestern Arizona, approximately 30 kilometers from the Company’s Perseverance Project and on trend with other producing porphyry systems. The Big Sandy project comprises approximately 5733 acres of mineral tenures
BIG SANDY EXPLORATION CONCEPT
Bell Copper began exploring the Big Sandy area in 2009, after geologic success in discovering what was believed to be the faulted top of the Wheeler Wash porphyry copper-molybdenum system, 30 kilometers to the north at the Company’s Perseverance project.
Extrapolation southward along the controlling Hualapai Fault suggested that the known Laramide-age Diamond Joe porphyry copper system would also have a faulted-off top, lying east of Diamond Joe out in the Big Sandy Valley. No copper occurrences had been previously reported in any government databases from the area, but upon field investigation by the Company, several surficial occurrences have now been discovered. The Company believes that the unusual copper occurrences are linked to a shallowly covered porphyry copper deposit.
Nearby porphyry systems in the same Laramide belt include Bagdad 50 kilometers to the southeast, Mineral Park 65 kilometers to the northwest, and the Company’s Perseverance JV with Cordoba Minerals, 30 kilometers to the north.
EXOTIC COPPER and FANGLOMERATE
Copper minerals found at Big Sandy by the Company are hosted in geologically recent terrace gravels of the Big Sandy River, in young faults that have recently conducted groundwater up to the surface, and as clasts in an extensive fanglomerate formation. Black manganese-copper oxide deposits crop out on the property in young terrace deposits of the Big Sandy River, demonstrating the recent discharge of metal-rich, acidic groundwater from the target area. This exotic copper deposit is expected to lie down hydrologic gradient from a concealed copper-molybdenum porphyry system, analogous to the “Exotica” copper deposit below the Chuquicamata porphyry in Chile.
Additionally, fanglomerate clasts carrying chrysocolla and chalcocite (supergene copper minerals) have been found across a distance of 1250 meters on the Company’s claims. Many varieties of veins and alteration types typical of porphyry copper deposits (e.g. “A-veins” and “D-veins” of Gustafson and Hunt, 1975), have been found in the fanglomerate formation cropping out over an area measuring 1250 meters by 800 meters. Heavy mineral associations in the fanglomerate are identical to those from outcropping Laramide rocks of the Diamond Joe porphyry copper system, located 12 kilometers to the west-southwest. The coarse grain size and angularity of clasts in the fanglomerate suggest that the formation was mainly transported to its current location en masse by structural movement (i.e. faulting), rather than by sedimentary transport. This implies that the underlying bedrock target may be grossly intact.
SPARTAN MT AT BIG SANDY
No copper occurrences had been previously reported in any government databases from the project area, but upon field investigations including surface sampling and geochem analysis by the Company, several unusual surficial copper occurrences were discovered. This included exotic mineralization comprising copper, manganese, iron, and arsenic present in young valley-filling sediments, as well as fanglomerate clasts carrying +1% copper as chrysocolla and chalcocite (supergene copper minerals) found across a distance of approximately 5+ kilometers on the Company’s claims.
In August of 2020, Quantec Geoscience Limited crews completed a SPARTAN MT survey at the Big Sandy property. The survey started out as 61 deep search geophysical soundings over the area, but was quickly increased to 78 total soundings after fanglomerate carrying angular pieces of chrysocolla and chalcocite were discovered and the Company expanded its claims east of the initial survey area.
The interpretation of survey revealed a large 2400 meter by 2100 meter conductive anomaly, beginning at a depth of 150 - 200 meters and extending to a depth of +1500 meters. The anomaly is believed to be hosted by Precambrian crystalline igneous rocks similar to those seen in outcrops east of the Company claims. Whereas pristine, unaltered Precambrian crystalline igneous rocks would be expected to have electrical resistivities of 1000 Ohm-meters or higher, the modeled resistivities in the core of the anomaly are below 15 Ohm-meters. The Company believes that this 60-fold reduction in expected resistivity might indicate the presence of copper porphyry-related sulfide mineralization and hydrolytic alteration contiguous with the copper-bearing fanglomerate on the surface of Big Sandy.
CURRENT EXPLORATION ACTIVITIES
The Company commenced the initial multi-hole drill program in November 2020. Part of this drill program included the drilling of a water well to supply water for this initial core drilling program, as well as to support multiple core drill rigs, if and when required.
Core drilling is underway.
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