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Gympie Eldorado Gold Mine

Gympie Eldorado Gold

Ore Types at Gympie
Ore Types at Gympie

Gympie Eldorado is located at Gympie, 180 kilometres north of Brisbane,Queensland and is 100% owned by Gympie Gold.

The objective at Gympie is to discover and develop large, high-profit gold orebodies. Exploration of the Gympie Goldfield advanced significantly during 2002-03 as the major Goldfield "ore feeder", the Inglewood Structure, was discovered along strike to the north and south of the current mine area. Gympie Eldorado's actual cost of discovery to date is only $18 per ounce of resource.

Mining operations provide invaluable working knowledge of the mineralisation systems and is an integral part of exploring the multi-million ounce potential of the high-grade Gympie Goldfield.

The Lewis Decline (tunnel access) was connected to the deeper workings of the Monkland Mine ahead of schedule in December 2002. The decline allows a large area of the Gympie Goldfield to be drilled more cost-effectively from multiple locations underground and tunnel access can readily be extended in various directions around the Goldfield. The operation can now be scaled up relatively quickly as and when additional orebodies are delineated as the haulage capacity of the decline is much greater than that of the existing shafts.

GYMPIE ELDORADO EXPLORATION

The Gympie Goldfield is considered to be very prospective for the discovery of orebodies containing more than one million ounces of gold because:

  • Historical production has yielded more than four million ounces of gold;
  • Modern exploration indicates strong potential for substantial discoveries;
  • Geological controls on mineralisation are now much better understood;
  • The known boundaries of the Goldfield have already been extended even though it is very sparsely drill-tested away from the current mine area; and
  • First-pass drilling away from the current mine has intersected the major ore feeder, the Inglewood Structure, with 4.3 kilometres of strike-length having drill-intercepted gold mineralisation. Interpretation of geophysical data strongly indicates that this major ore-bearing structure, open at depth, continues further in both directions.

Tenements covering a ten-kilometre by four-kilometre area surrounding the Goldfield are 100%-owned by Gympie Gold. Our tenements have been expanded to the south in order to cover recently recognised potential.

Substantial prospects identified in the Gympie Goldfield range from conceptual targets to actual discoveries which, in total, may host over six million ounces of gold. Most individual prospects are in low confidence categories ("high risk") due to limited drilling but small zones of North Inglewood and Partridge are more advanced and have already been proven up to ore reserves status. Overall, the likelihood of a major discovery is considered to be high and we are reasonably confident of discovering at least two million ounces.

The primary exploration aim is to discover a major new gold ore system analogous to the Inglewood-Stockwork-Gympie Vein orebodies in the current mine area which has yielded 2 million ounces historically.

A total of $5.7 million was spent on exploration in 2002-03, of which approximately two-thirds was spent on grassroots exploration. Limited funds have constrained exploration expenditure since early 2003.

Gympie Veins, the Inglewood Lode and Stockworks are the three types of orebodies mined to date in the Gympie Goldfield. The sustained modern exploration effort at Gympie has provided strong understanding of the rock types and controls on mineralisation summarised as follows:

  1. Curra Plate Sediments contain un-mineralised shales and limestone that were thrust over the Productive Beds by the Curra Break fault, thus concealing part of the Goldfield and large areas with exploration potential.
  2. Productive Beds comprise carbon-bearing sediments and volcanics which help Gympie Veins to form and become highly enriched in gold. Gympie Veins were mined by the old-timers and are relied on for high-grade ore and rare occurrences of Gympie GoldŽ Gemstone.
  3. Lower Volcanics contain many quartz veins which are often low grade, probably due to the lack of carbon.
  4. Highbury Basalts underlie the Lower Volcanics and the entire Goldfield but were only recently recognised as prospective when deep drillholes intersected quartz veins with economic gold grades similar to Inglewood ore shoots.
  5. The Inglewood Structure transects the Goldfield and hosts the major Inglewood Lode. Steep north-plunging zones of richer ore called "ore shoots" typically occur within the Inglewood Lode at a 250 to 300 metre spacing. These shoots typically contain 50,000 to 150,000 ounces of gold at grades of better than 8g/t gold and at widths from 1 to 5 metres.
  6. Stockwork orebodies are zones of multiple close-spaced, north-south striking gold-rich quartz veins ("Gympie Veins"). Stockworks can form massive orebodies up to 80 metres wide and Stockwork zones typically contain from 30,000 to 300,000 ounces of gold at grades from 5g/t to 15g/t.

The areas considered to have highest potential for significant discoveries:

  • Continuations of the Inglewood Lode at depth, and along strike to the north and south, including associated large-tonnage Stockwork orebodies and high-grade Gympie Veins.
  • Drill-intercepted mineralised systems parallel to and analogous to the Inglewood-Stockwork-Gympie Vein ore system in the Southern Gympie Goldfield, such as the Partridge Graben prospect where an initial resource of 79,000 ounces has already been delineated.
  • Elsewhere in the known gold-bearing productive beds of the Gympie Goldfield.

RESOURCES AND RESERVES

At 30 June 2003, Mineral Resources totalled 686,000 ounces and Ore Reserves totalled 161,000 ounces. Key changes over the past year include:

  • The processing of approximately 60,000 ounces from Reserves which represents about 95,000 ounces from Resources;
  • Poor near-mine exploration results around the Lewis Decline. The old-timers had exploited more than we anticipated in this remnant mining zone; and
  • The large extensions discovered to the Inglewood Structure north, south and at depth, which for the most part do not yet constitute resources.

GYMPIE ELDORADO OPERATIONS

DEVELOPMENT

Mine development totalled 7,432 metres for 2002-03.

The Lewis Decline accessed some ore that was mined in 2002-03 but, apart from that, near-mine exploration off the decline has been relatively unsuccessful because it was focused on remnant zones in areas extensively mined historically. The Lewis Decline's principal role is to continue to:

  • Assist exploration for new orebodies by allowing a large area of the Gympie Goldfield to be drilled more cost-effectively from underground;
  • Provide the starting point to readily extend tunnel access in additional directions as new ore zones are discovered;
  • Provide the infrastructure to scale-up gold production relatively quickly when additional orebodies are delineated as the haulage capacity of the decline is much greater than that of the existing shafts;
  • Accelerate the conversion of the gold resource base into ore reserves and production; and
  • Enable improvements, such as in ventilation and haulage, to current mining operations by supplementing shaft access to the Monkland Mine.

A focus of development at the Monkland Mine during the year was development on the Inglewood Lode in the Museum Shoot.

PRODUCTION

The primary ore source for 2002-03 was Stockwork Block 6A, which was the first Stockwork orebody discovered and developed at Gympie and marked the arrival of modern bulk-mining to the project. The first stoping block had an average width of more then 30 metres, compared with average stoping width of under 3 metres for the 250,000 ounces mined since modern operations commenced in 1995.

Internal grade variability within the Stockwork orebody led to grade mined to date being about 2.8g/t less than the 11.5g/t initially forecast. Reserve modelling techniques have been calibrated accordingly.

Record gold production of 55,368 ounces was achieved for 2002-03 at a cash operating cost of $350 per ounce. This 7% increase in gold production over the previous year was due to increases in ore mined and mill throughput, partially offset by lower mill recovery and head grade.

Increased mill throughput reflects the recent modifications to the grinding, gravity and leach circuits. Throughput for 2002-03 was double the level achieved in 2000-01. There is scope to further increase throughput as mill capacity is now approximately 300,000 tonnes per annum.


View Gympie's Reserve Statement and Production Statistics (140KB) [ pdf ]

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11 October 2005:
Circular to stakeholders - 5 October 2005
26 September 2005:
Notice of Meeting
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30 January 2004:
Report for December 2003 Quarter
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Report for September 2003 Quarter
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23 October 2003:
2003 Annual Report
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2002 Annual Report
 
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28 August 2003:
Full-Year Results and Update
28 August 2003:
02-03 Preliminary Final Report
 
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25 November 2003:
2003 AGM - Managing Director's Presentation
05 November 2003:
Mining 2003 Conference Presentation
 




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Last Modified: Wednesday, 31-Mar-2004 12:07:11 EST