Please Note: Blog posts are not selected, edited or screened by Seeking Alpha editors.

Navaho Gold readies for drilling in Nevada, Barrick Gold's two discoveries add spice

Navaho Gold (ASX:NVG) has signed a drill contract for the deployment of two rigs to test deep targets on the TAZ and Utah Clipper projects in Nevada, USA.

Drilling will commence at the TAZ Project on 21 September 2011 and in late October / early November for the Utah Clipper Project. 

At TAZ, where up to 4 holes totalling 1200 metres are planned, an LF‐90 diamond core rig is expected to commence drilling on 21 September, whilst a larger capacity LF‐140 diamond core rig is expected to complete two deep (each ~1,000m) holes at Utah Clipper commencing late October/early November 2011.

Providing spice to drilling at TAZ Project is that it has seen little historic drilling save for a shallow hole sunk by BHP Minerals.  In addition, the prospect is located 25 kilometres south east of Barrick Gold Corporation's (NYSE: ABX) massive 11.5 million ounce Cortez Hills deposit. 

Navaho’s has farmed into the project via a farm‐in agreement with Miranda Gold Corp (TSX‐V: MAD) whereby Navaho can earn a 75% interest in the project.

The drill program is principally designed for deep testing of near‐surface gold mineralisation defined by an intersection of 21.3metres of 1.44 g/t gold from just 65 metres depth in a previous BHP Minerals drill hole VC96‐8.

The BHP drill hole is considered too shallow to have adequately tested the prospective Lower Plate carbonate sequence, host to rich gold mineralisation elsewhere on the Carlin and Battle Mountain Trends.

The Utah Clipper Project is located directly adjacent to Barrick Gold Corp’s Pipeline‐Gold Acres gold mine complex in the Cortez‐Pipeline sector of the Battle Mountain Trend, a trend that has produced in excess of 25 Moz gold.

The area is subject to a farm‐in agreement with Columbus Gold Corp (TSX‐V: CGT) whereby Navaho can earn a 70% interest in the project.

The drilling will test two deep targets which have associated gold and arsenic geochemical anomalies at surface which may represent “leakage” from underlying gold mineralisation in prospective Lower Plate carbonate rocks.

The targets are located in structural settings analogous to the Cortez Hills deposit where 6 kilometres to the southeast Barrick Gold Corporation.

Barrick announced on 7 September 2011, two significant gold discoveries which have the potential to become world‐class (>5 Moz) deposits. An inferred resource of 3.5 million ounces has been outlined at Red Hill with mineralisation open in all directions. Two kilometres further south at Goldrush a drill hole intersection of 20.5m grading 27.8g/t Au has been reported by Barrick.

Navaho CEO Mark Dugmore said “This drill program is an exciting step for Navaho as it sees the first deep testing of targets with very large tonnage potential analogous to the Pipeline–Cortez deposits in their geological setting and location on the Battle Mountain Trend.

"Furthermore, the Navaho drill program takes on additional significance in light of Barrick Gold Corporation’s two discoveries as this mineralisation occurs in carbonate rocks analogous to those targeted at Utah Clipper and TAZ.”

Future program

This drill program continues the Company's focus on the prolific gold province of the state of Nevada, USA. This work is being completed in parallel with proposed plans in Nevada for further RC drilling in the Stevens Basin, Rose Mine and Whitehorse Flats Projects before years end.