Mineral Mountain Shows Shining Tree Gold Potential and More
By Kevin Michael Grace
Nelson Baker has been in the mining business, man and boy, for 55 years. And the President of Mineral Mountain Resources Ltd remains an explorer at heart. “I’ve never been too keen on taking properties to development,” he says. “I find that the most fun is identifying areas that have the potential for gold discoveries.” Having had success in Ontario’s Shining Tree gold district with Rainy River Resources (6.6 million ounces and counting), Baker believes his Shining Tree Project could prove the district another Timmins or Kirkland Lake.
Baker explains that exploration of the district, about 100 kilometres south of Timmins on the Abitibi Greenstone Belt, had been on hold for 20 years due to an Indian land claim. “The geology, the western extension of the Cadillac break, we knew all along that it went right through the Shining Tree area and on into west to Trelawney, which is creating a lot of interest lately with its over four million ounces. I was born and raised in Kirkland Lake, and so I knew that Shining Tree was highly prospective for gold. Our project has geology that’s identical to some deposits in Kirkland Lake and also in the Timmins area.”
Mineral Mountain, which began trading in July 2010, has earned 60% of the 145-square-kilometre Shining Tree Project from Golden Harp Resources and intends to earn a further 10%. June 7 assays from its Cook Zone included 0.65 grams per tonne over 133.3 metres, including 1.47 g/t over 47 metres. May 4 assays included 1.45 g/t over 62.5 metres, including 4.62 g/t over 5 metres and 1.95 g/t over 15.7 metres. And April 27 assays included 1.95 g/t over 39 metres, including 8.38 g/t over 4 metres.
Baker comments, “Within that 47 metres (June 7), there’s a high-grade section that is remarkably consistent; it’s there every time we drill it. We think that in addition to having the potential to define a high-grade deposit, which would require a shaft, it also has excellent potential for broad open-pit style mineralization. There are gold values over 100 metres, which is very typical to a large gold system. We haven’t fully defined it yet, but it’s wide open, in particular to the west.”
Drilling continues at Cook, and Baker foresees a 43-101 resource estimate by year’s end. He says, “We’re using reverse-circulation drilling, and it was this method that indentified the huge gold deposit at Rainy River. We feel that it’s really going to tell us where additional targets are and maybe highlight some hidden gold zones that no one ever saw before.”
Besides its Shining Tree project, Mineral Mountain has two other prospective properties, one in Ontario and the other in BC. Drilling began June 20 at its past-producing Straw Lake Beach Mine (a 75% option), located 50 kilometres north of Fort Frances. Baker says, “Our Rainy River guys made several trips up there and liked it very much. We thought it had a lot of potential for a big resource, not just a narrow high-grade-vein scenario. It’s a shear zone that’s 300 metres wide, and we’ve acquired a land position over 11 kilometers of this strike length. There’s a number of gold showings in the area and not just in the mine shaft. We’re drilling 3,000 metres initially, and we’re really encouraged with the potential for a large deposit.” Grab samples have yielded assays as high as 12.73 g/t.
Shining Tree has gold values over 100 metres, which is very typical to a large gold system —Nelson Baker
A 3,000-metre drilling program at Mineral Mountain’s Kootenay Arc project, 65 kilometres southeast of Revelstoke, begins next week. Over 6,000 samples were taken last year. “We’ve indentified a spectacular silver occurrence called the Black Warrior,” Baker reports. “Some sample assays are up to 355 ounces of silver, with up to 15 grams of gold. It’s in an environment that we compare to the Carlin-style trend in Nevada. It’s not a small property; its 75 kilometres by 15 kilometres. Within that property, there’s a number of long mineralized trends that we think could host deposits. It’s an exciting and underexplored area comparable to the Coeur d’Alene area to the south.”
Mineral Mountain has $6 million in cash and a burn rate of $600,000 per month. It has 59.3 million shares outstanding, last trading at $0.45, and a market cap of $26.7 million. Insiders of the company own 22%.
Baker concludes, “I see Mineral Mountain having the potential to be a real strong mid-tier junior. I wouldn’t be surprised if we had the potential to define a three-to-five-million ounce deposit on the Straw or Shining Tree. I think the Kootenay Arc project has outstanding potential for a standalone silver play. And we’ll have a lot of news going forward from here.”