Horizon Minerals and mega gold miner, Northern Star Resources, have put the final ink on an agreement for a straight swap of mining and exploration tenements, which will strengthen Horizon’s gold project holdings near Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie in the WA Goldfields region. Horizon will secure three gold projects near Coolgardie and four projects near Kalgoorlie, including Golden Ridge which has produced over 253,000 ounces of gold.
Horizon Minerals and mega gold miner, Northern Star Resources, have put the final ink on an agreement for a straight swap of mining and exploration tenements, which will strengthen Horizon’s gold project holdings near Kalgoorlie and Coolgardie in the WA Goldfields region.
Horizon will divest its 100% interest in numerous regional tenements to Northern Star, including the Anthill, Blister Dam, New Mexico, White Flag and Kanowna North projects.
In return, Horizon will acquire a 100% interest in Northern Star’s Rosehill, Brilliant North and Gunga West projects near Coolgardie and the Golden Ridge, Balagundi, Abattoir and Mt Monger projects near Kalgoorlie.
Horizon now has a mountain of information to compile and analyse in order to determine which of these prospective areas will be at the top of its list in the new year.
The Rosehill and Brilliant North projects are located on granted mining leases within staggering distance of Coolgardie. Legacy miners have only scratched the surface at Rose Hill, which kicked off back in the late 1800’s, and produced about 1,340 ounces at 8.3 grams per tonne gold according to Horizon.
Brilliant North is sitting a stone’s throw from Rose Hill and is subject to an area that has a fragmented landholding past and therefore has had a lack of systematic exploration with Horizon now planning to put the pieces of the puzzle together.
Less than a kilometre to the northeast of Rose Hill, the Gunga West leases are situated close to Focus Minerals’ Three Mile Hill gold processing plant, which is currently on care and maintenance, which has been the subject of a proposed deal between Horizon and Focus.
In 2013, Blue Tiger Mines took 137,000 tonnes grading 1.86 grams per tonne gold for 8,170 ounces out of Gunga West.
Horizon said the Coolgardie assets being acquired from Northern Star are considered strongly prospective for mineral resource extensions in both the open-cut and underground mining development scenarios and will form part of its impending consolidated feasibility study.
Adjacent to the company’s Boorara and Nimbus projects, about 10km east of Kalgoorlie, Horizon will pick up the historical Golden Ridge gold mine, directly south and along strike from Boorara.
Golden Ridge was mined for about 20 years from 1920 and threw up almost 140,000 ounces of gold at a screaming grade of just over 17 grams per tonne.
A pit was dug out over Golden Ridge during the late 1990s and produced nearly 114,000 ounces at just below 2 grams per tonne gold and it has received very little exploratory attention in the 15 years since, according to Horizon.
The Kalgoorlie tenement package acquisition also includes several undeveloped prospects in the Balagundi-Kanowna South area and two regional exploration plays at Abattoir, north of the city and Mt Monger, about 35km southeast of Boorara.
Commenting on the asset swap, Horizon Managing Director Mr Jon Price previously said: “This is a sensible transaction between Horizon and Northern Star that place assets within each company’s areas of interest.”
“For Horizon, it adds contiguous tenure to the Boorara gold project area in Kalgoorlie and additional strategic assets in Coolgardie including the Rose Hill - Brilliant North tenements which give us the ability to unlock the full value of the Coolgardie gold project as we continue to progress formal binding documentation and required approvals for the potential acquisition.”
They say the West Australian mining community is a little bit incestuous with tentacles easy to trace between a lot of the major players.
Deals like this one, however, are a testament to the tight-knit nature of the business where everyone knows everyone and most know a little bit about a lot of projects.
At face value, this deal would appear to be a win for both parties, which underlines the real value of the WA mining community being so intertwined.
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