The Canalask Property is located in the Whitehorse Mining District, approximately 320 km west of Whitehorse and is accessible from the Alaska Highway near Beaver Creek, Yukon. The Canalask property consists of a contiguous block of 179 quartz claims covering an area of approximately 3,400 hectares.
Victoria Gold owns 100% of the current claim package, which has a long history of exploration and development.
The first 32 claims on the Canalask property were first staked in March of 1953 as the White, Wolverine, and Caribou claims by P. Eikland, W. Theriault and F. Hickey. The 32 claims were optioned to Prospectors Airways Company Ltd, on behalf of a syndicate which included Noranda Mines Ltd and Kerr Addison Gold Mines Ltd (Yukon Minfile, 2017). The syndicate drilled 14 holes totalling 1,652.3 m then dropped the option in March of 1954.
The claims were optioned again in May of 1954 to Canalask Nickel Mines Ltd. Canalask Nickel Mines Ltd. was created by Ontario Nickel Mines Ltd. and Frobisher Ltd. to develop the Canalask property (Yukon Minfile, 2017). From 1954 to 1958, Canalask Nickel Mines Ltd. conducted 1025 m of surface drilling and 466.7 m of underground drilling as well as 518.2 m of drifting on 2 levels and a 106.7 m winze. In 1963, Canalask Nickel Mines Ltd. changed its name to Northwest Canalask Nickel Mines Ltd and allowed the claims to lapse.
The property was restaked as the Micro claims in March of 1964 by P. Versluce, H. Versluce and C. Gibbons. From 1965-1966, the claim owners conducted trenching on the property before optioning the claims to Discovery Mines Ltd., Rayrock Mines Ltd. and Consolidated Canadian Faraday Ltd. in 1967.
Discovery Mines Ltd., Rayrock Mines Ltd. and Consolidated Canadian Faraday Ltd. conducted magnetic, EM, and IP geophysical surveys, trenching, and 399.6 m of diamond drilling. The group conducted 1,006.0 m of surface drilling, re-opened the old underground workings and accomplished 370.9 m of underground drilling. The option was dropped in the 1970 and the owners did more trenching before they optioned the claims to the Nickel Syndicate (Canadian Superior Exploration Ltd., Aquitaine Company of Canada, Home Oil Ltd., and Getty Mines Ltd.) in 1972. The Nickel Syndicate conducted geological mapping, magnetic, and EM surveys as well as 640.0 m of diamond drilling. From May to June of 1973 the Syndicate stake 39 claims in the area. In 1974, the Nickel Syndicate dropped the option. In 1978, the claim owners reconditioned the portal.
Target Deposit Type
Noril’sk type Ni-Cu-PGE-Au massive sulphide deposits.
There the potential for high-grade magmatic nickel (Ni) - copper (Cu) platinum group element (PGE) mineralization on the Canalask Property, similar to that of the nearby Wellgreen PGE deposit to the South. There are multiple showings of Ni-Cu-PGE mineralization on the property; the Canalask showings (Minfile 115F 045) and the ONION and EPIC occurrences (Minfile 115K 077, 115F 047).
Geology and Mineralization
The Canalask property is one of several nickel-copper-PGE properties in the Kluane Mafic- Ultramafic Belt in western Yukon. It occurs specifically within the White River Mafic-Ultramafic Intrusive Complex (WRIC), which is the northernmost and second largest sill in the Kluane Mafic-Ultramafic Belt.
The property area is underlain by rocks of the Late Paleozoic to Middle Mesozoic Wrangellia Terrane. The Wrangellia Terrane, and the Alexander Terrane are believed to be part of the second major accretional event that make up the Canadian Cordillera and together they form the Insular Superterrane.
Mineralization consists of nickel-copper-platinum-palladium bearing sulphides (mainly pyrrhotite) occurring as massive sulphides or disseminated in serpentinized periodotite.
In December of 1986, the property was optioned by Kluane Joint Venture, which consisted of All-North Resources Ltd. and Chevron Minerals Ltd. In 1987, the Kluane Joint Venture joined with Rockridge Mining Corp and conducted an exploration program which consisted of geological mapping, geochemical sampling, magnetic surveys, VLF surveys, EM surveys, core relogging, and 603.2 m of diamond drilling. The property was sold in November of 1992 to a joint venture consisting of A.R. Archer Holdings Ltd., ECEE Money Ltd., Carvest Holdings Ltd., and Norvista Developments Ltd.
In 1987, Polestar Exploration Inc. conducted a mapping and sampling program on their claims that bordered the Canalask property to the southeast. Harjay Exploration Co. Ltd. staked claims in June of 1987 to the north and to the southwest. B. Lueck staked claims to the west in October of 1987. In 1988, Lodestar Exploration Ltd. did magnetometer and VLF-EM surveying on the CT claims. G. Harris staked the Lobo claims about one kilometre to the southwest in 1989. In 1990, Harjay Exploration Co. Ltd. conducted trenching on the WR claims.
The Micro, Weng, Cana, and Onion (Minfile 115K 077) claim groups were purchased by Expatriate Resources Ltd. in 1993. In August of 1993 the company staked, on the west side of the White River, the White and River claim groups (Minfile #115F 047). Expatriate Resources Ltd. then consolidated all of the claims into the Canalask property. The company conducted an exploration program, on the east side of the White River, which consisted of trenching, line cutting, magnetometer and VLF-EM surveys, geological mapping, and geochemical sampling.
In 1994, an option was granted to Cachet Enterprises Corp. to earn a 50% interest in the Micro claim group. In the same year Cachet Enterprises Corp. accomplished 940 m of diamond drilling. In 1995, Cachet Enterprises Corp. did 532 m of diamond drilling as well as total magnetic field, VLF-EM and horizontal loop electromagnetic geophysical surveys on the Micro claims. In 1996, Cachet Enterprises Corp. terminated their option.
From 1996-97, Expatriate Resources Ltd. expanded their claim block by staking around the Micro claim grouping. The company flew an airborne geophysical survey over the entire property and drilled the anomalies found on the east side of the White River with 10 diamond drill holes (1,277.7 m). Ground magnetometer and HLEM geophysical surveys were also conducted on the property.
The property was optioned by Uravan Minerals Inc. in 1999. In 2001, the Uravan Minerals Inc. carried out an exploration program which consisted of ground magnetometer, HLEM and IP geophysical surveys, geological mapping, hand trenching, sampling and prospecting on the Onion and White claims. In 2002, Uravan Minerals Inc. did 410.5 m of diamond drilling on the White and Onion claims then dropped its option at the end of 2002. Ownership of the property then returned to Expatriate Resources Ltd. In 2003, Expatriate Resources Ltd. transferred the property to StrataGold Corporation.
Falconbridge visited the CanAlask and Onion areas in 2005 collecting a number of samples for ICP analysis, including copper and nickel analysis, as well as samples for whole rock analysis. Falconbridge finalized its agreement to earn an 80% interest in all claims held by the StrataGold Corporation in October of 2005. The HAND claim group were staked by Falconbridge in October of 2005 along the southeast border of the Canalask claim block.
In 2006, Falconbridge conducted a surface exploration program that consisted of refurbishment 26.80 km of previously cut line on the “CanAlask” grid. Some 22.35 line kilometers of UTEM-3 electromagnetic surveying of these lines was conducted. A small amount of geological mapping and rock sampling of outcrop and small tailings piles of the Main Zone of the Canalask deposit was performed. An additional 16.65 kilometers of line was cut on the contiguous “Pole” grid which underwent 12.925 line km of UTEM-3 surveying. Detailed geological mapping of most of the “Pole” grid as well as soil sampling at 50 m station spacing along central portions of this grid and some silt sampling was also conducted.
Xstrata plc, finalized its acquisition of Falconbridge Ltd. in September of 2006. The terms of the agreement for the StrataGold claims, and claim ownership of non-StrataGold claims were transferred to Xstrata plc. In 2006 Xstrata assigned all of its rights and obligations under the letter agreement with StrataGold Corporation to White River Resources Inc., a direct subsidiary of Umbono Capital Partners LLC.
In 2007 White River Resources conducted an exploration program which consisted of a 980.4 line-km VTEM survey, due diligence sampling, and local and regional mapping and orientation of the geological setting of the WRIC and Wrangellia Terrane.
During the summer of 2008 White River Resources Inc. conducted a total of 1,085 m diamond drilling, targeting areas identified by the 2007 VTEM survey on the White River Nickel-PGE project
In 2008, Umbono Capital Partners completed the sale of White Rivers Resources Inc. to African Minerals Limited. African Minerals subsequently allowed the option for the Canalask to expire in 2009 and the property was returned to StrataGold Corporation.
The last exploration program on the Canalask property was conducted by Victoria Gold in 2016 and consisted of the collection and analyses of 577 soil samples along two grids oriented northeast-southwest and north-south.
In the Canalask project area, the White River Intrusive Complex is host to multiple Ni-Cu-PGE showings that occur at or near the basal contact. The deposit types that are related to the mafic-ultramafic intrusions in the region are magmatic segregation deposits (the Wellgreen deposit), and epigenetic hydrothermal and/or replacement style deposits (Canalask Main and Footwall Zones). The main focus of exploration on the Canalask property is concentrated along this basal contact as well as brecciated rocks in the footwall.
An extensive soil sampling program is recommended for the Canalask property and should be focused on the White River Intrusive Complex to establish more exploration targets.
Content on this page has been reviewed and approved by Paul D. Gray, P.Geo., Victoria Gold’s Qualified Person with respect to the Canalask Project.
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