It was in the early parts of the 1900’s, a prospector by the name of Mr. May had work the vein. Milling would also commence that would return good gold values from the shallow prospect shaft. Work on the property was temporarily stopped till it would be pick up once again in the 1930’s. Besides the “May vein or the No. 3 it was also reported that a total of five other veins occur at different distances from the “May” vein.
Within the 1930’s. Milmac Mines, limited., had owned a group of claims covering the Dycie Area. It was during this time when extensive surface exploration work was carried out on the property. This was generally in view of the great size of holdings that by no means revealed all possibilities. Prospecting which was carried out had discovered a rich-ore-shoot on the Stenabaugh No. 3 vein. This also included three other zones of possible and profitable ore-deposition in the area. Reports on these zones are considered to contain a number of quartz veins, and veinlets or mineralized shears of strength, and persistence. All of these quartz veins/veinlets are also stated to show from fair to heavy sulphide base mineralization, and visible gold.
R. F. Mitchell, M.E, had prepared a report for this property that had stated the following: There are a total of six known veins on the property, but the major part of the work done by H.C. Miller, had been confined to the No. 3 vein. This is generally bordered by sheared Keewatin Greenstone, and the No. 3 vein would be channel sampled over its entire exposed length. Assays which were taken had indicated that the values in the ore-shoot are equal to, if not better than the surface assays of present producing mines in the district. Mr. Mitchell had additionally discovered lenses of ore that were about 125 feet long with one section about 80 feet long, averaging $30.72 per ton with gold at $20 per oz., and having an assay width of 39-inches. The vein apparently continued beyond this good lens in both, to the east, and west directions, but had not been well opened up so that channel sampling was not possible at present time. Grab samples however, gave between 0.30 oz. Au per/ton and 0.45 oz. per/ton at the east end with other grab samples considered to be encouraging. Upon examination and geological mapping, it was stated that the main vein was traced for a strike length of 1,100 feet. An ore-shoot in the pre-Cambrian over 100 feet long always warrants intensive underground exploration as other lenses of ore will be picked up both on dip, and strike, since the vein continues both east and west of the 80-foot shoot that would be opened up on surface. Many different samples that were taken upon this vein had valued between 0.04 oz. to 40 oz. Au. per/ton.
On the eastern section a wide shear zone was discovered near a contact between the granitoid (Centennial Stock) and greenstone, which was stripped for 200 feet in length and channel sampled across considerable width. Sampling that was carried out resulted in section 1 that assayed $1.60 in gold per/ton over 60”, $10.00 in gold per/ton over 60”, $13.60 in gold per/ton over 108”, and $7.60 or an average of $8.85 in gold per/ton across a width of twenty-nine feet. Section 2 had assayed $24.80 to $28.40 in gold per/ton over 30” and 60” or an average of $27.20 in golf per/ton across a width of seven and half feet. Section 3 had assay $0.80 to trace in gold per/ton over 360”, and $4.80 in gold per/ton over 72” or an average for the six foot at $4.80 in gold per/ton across a width of six feet. Section 4, which was the last sample section had assay $42.00 in gold per/ton over 60”, $8.80 in gold per/ton over 60”, $5.20 in gold per/ton over 31”, $2.00 in gold per/ton over 48”, or an average of $11.64 in gold per/ton across a width of twenty and half feet.
It was on January 16th, 1936, when the movement of a crew of men and outfit into the property was commenced. Equipment along with supplies would also be transported from Missinabie, on the Canadian Pacific Railway, which was about 23.8 miles east of Franz. This also resulted in carrying out eleven plane trips within two days that provide freight service to a small lake near the proposed camp site. Work on the camp would commence when tents were erected for the accommodation of the crew, and shortly after a surface trenching programme was carried out on the Stenabaugh Gold Property. Overburden would also become a problem as had been anticipated, but by February 19th, there had been 215.0 linear feet of surface trenching completed.
This zone was reported to occur in favorable structural conditions that were traced out by test pits for some distance and is believed to have a length of 1,500 to 2,000 feet. Its offers the possibilities for the occurrence of an ore-deposit of very large size and would be further tested by diamond drilling. An occurances of similar characteristics had also been explored near the No. 3 vein. Here a south-east striking shear, persisting for a great length, is crossed by numerous faults and frequently contains short lengths of vein quartz between the faults (Old woman River Fault being one). In other places the shear contains wide quartz lenses, and quartz flooding in the area.
Bilmac Mines, were potentially going to develop their site by sinking a shaft down to 91.33 m vertically on the No. 3 vein. This would also include station cutting two levels in order to progress with underground lateral development work. By doing this work it would also include further diamond drilling and the erection of a 50-ton mill. Other plans came to a rise as Bilmac Mines had encountered a problem with finding an honest, and sincere manager for this project which became factors in executing this development campaign. Some other problems in taking out this planned work was the out break of World War II. New Campbell Island would additionally report that the property was considered to be very encouraging, and constitutes one of the best properties to be assessed by this group in the near future. Some heavy shear zones are also considered to trend northwest-southeast near the Stenabaugh. These shears are slightly mineralized, and are consider to traverse the Willis Shaft area which is situated at about a quarter of a mile southwest from the “May Vein”
After this review an option was shortly after taken on the Stenabaugh Property by Consolidated Bellekeno Mines, Ltd. in 1962. A report at this time was released by Mr. T. L. Gledhill Jr., for Consolidated Bellekeno Mines. Consolidated Bellekeno had describe the vein as a quartz-carbonate vein that had been exposed for 280 feet, and generally varies in width from 3 feet to 10 feet. The sulphide content was describe to increase on the westerly side of the vein which is near vertical, and strike east-west. One of the major structures in the area is a strong north-west shear zone, and an east-west vein is known to occur. Grab samples were considered to have not been so encouraging but channel samples were taken across the vein when it had first been opened 40 years ago. Some of these indicators had made the vein fairly promising to warrant exploratory work from these channel sample results.
Diamond drilling was undertaken by Consolidated Bellekeno Mines that amounted to completing six surface holes, totalling 834 feet. This resulted in picking up several stockwork veins that were 1 to 3 feet wide vein intersections that carried mostly nil-trace samples with one sample grading 0.02 oz. Au. per/ton. Drilling however, was reported to have failed to indicate any continuity of the main “May Vein”. Assays of drill core were also considered to be extremely low and failed to confirm the previously reported assays from surface material. Consolidated Bellekeno would additionally carry out geological mapping, limited magnetometer surveying, and surface sampling. It was concluded that gold bearing veins are known to be represented by two vein systems which appear on the property. The gold veins are associated with nearby acid intrusive which cut a complex series of volcanic extrusives and intrusives. A magnetometer survey over a portion of the property had proved to be useful in interpreting the geological contacts. Surface sampling generally would reveal two areas of interest that gold values indicated further work to be carried out. An initial 1,000 feet of diamond drilling would also provide a test for the Stenabaugh Vein. This would generally comprise of two tiers of closely spaced drill holes to cut the vein at 75- and 150-feet in vertical depth.
It was between 1958 – 1962, when work was undertaken in vicinity of the Stenabough-Carleton vein. The property at this point in time was being explored by O. Christiensen and W. D. Sutherland, who drilled three holes in claim SSM827533. No assays were however taken on the logs, but the holes were shallow and in sericite schist and mafic volcanics.
Claim staking would continue from January 4th, to January 8th, 1961, as the property was examined by New Campbell Island Mines, Ltd. The claim staking would additionally be done within the Michipicoten Area in Rabazo Township, of the Algoma District. A study was carried out on the report which was prepared by R. F. Mitchell for Bilmac Gold Mines, Ltd. After a review it was decided that the report was encouraging enough to agree upon. A vein comprising of a rich ore-shoot for a length of 125-feet was the main focus of the sampling programme, while another section was 80-feet long. Sampling that was carried out had indicated an average of 1.50 oz. Au on the No. 3 vein zone from surface sampling. Upon examination it was revealed that the No. 3 vein had an average width of 39-inches. The No. 3 vein would continue beyond this point and was opened to the east and to the west. More detailed channel sampling was recommended as the vein hadn't been exposed that well on the surface to carry it out. Grab samples which were taken from the east that average between 0.07 oz. Au and 0.08 oz. Au per tonne. Other sections assayed had also been reported to be quite encouraging. As detailed geological work had been carried out this had indicated that a the No. 3 vein (May Vein) has a strike length of 1,100 feet.
Canador Exploration, Limited, would undertaken a diamond drilling programme on the Stenabaugh Gold Prospect in 1964. This results in intersecting some low-grade values from 0.005 oz. Au to 0.01 oz. Au per/ton with two intersections giving higher grad gold values. The higher grade gold values intersected had resulted in 0.19 oz. Au over 1.0 feet from 47.2 to 48.2 ft. This also included 0.30 oz. Au per/ton over 2.0 feet from 28.8 to 31.8 ft. It was from 35.5 to 40.6 ft. that gave assay results of 0.07 oz. Au per/ton over 2.0 ft. Another section gave 0.20 oz. Au. per/ton over 2.5 ft. from 37.0 to 39.0 ft. It would also include a section of 0.02 oz. Au per/ton over 4.0 ft from 33.0 to 37.0 ft. It was also from 37.0 to 40.0 ft that returned 0.02 oz. Au per/ton over 3.0 ft. It would alsl include 0.03 oz. Au. per/ton over 2.9 ft from 41.9 to 44.8 ft. One other intercept had returned 0.12 oz. Au. per/ton over 1.5 ft. from 58.0 to 59.5 ft.
From 1968 to 1970, B. Carlton would commence surface diamond drilling of twelve holes, on the Stenabaugh-Carlton Vein. Six of the holes were drilled in the vicinity of the “Willis Exploration Pit” which was sunk 18 metres in sheared tuff to explore a quartz-vein with pyrite, and chalcopyrite. Upon observation the vein strike at approximately 115 to 140-degrees and varies in width from 0.3 to 17 metres. The vein is commonly considered to also be steeply dipping to the north and contains minor amounts of pyrite, pyrrhotite, chalcopyrite, and arsenopyrite. This vein is generally situated in finely banded and altered metasediments below the contact with the metavolcanics. The Carelton Vein that was intersected by diamond drilling had varied in length from 1-foot to 58.1 feet. Upon observation it was reported that this vein had dipped steeply to the north and contained minor amount of pyrite and pyrrhotite, and trace amounts of chalcopyrite, and arsenic.
Canabec Exploration, Limited., and Pongo Gold Mines, Limited., would cover the Stenabough Property by securing large claim blocks in 1970. However, no work was undertaken during this exploration campaign as it was focus on the Gananoque Property. The Gananoque Property is known to commonly occur at about 1.5 km. from the Stenabough Property in Rabazo Township, Michipicoten Area, of the Algoma District.
A surface diamond drilling programme of 745.5 metres was carried out between February 27, and April 13, 1984, by Gold Pond Resources, Ltd. A contract would also be granted to W.G. Drilling Ltd., who drilled 6 holes using a J.K. Smit model 300 gas powered diamond drill. The holes which were carried out are registered as GP-1 through GP-6. Reports by Gold Pond had reported that overburden issues were met and a planned drilling programme would be commence by two different sizes of bits and rods which were used. A total of 171.3 metres of core, was divided into 270 samples, which were split and fire assayed for gold. Only low grades from 0.005 oz. Au to 0.03 oz. Au per/ton were met with. Minor base metals were also pick up through this diamond drilling programme that was carried out by Gold Pond.
Gold Monk Exploration had held a section of the property in 1984, but never executed any exploration work on the property.
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Stenabaugh Gold Prospect, Wawa area. Best diamond drill intercepts for Canador Exploration were 3.40 g/t Au. over 0.61 m from 8.77 m to 9.69 m, including 5.67 g/t Au. over 0.76 m from 11.27 m to 11.88 m, and 3.40 g/t Au. over 0.45 m from 17.66 m to 18.13 m. Lower grade gold values range from trace to 0.85. g/t Au.
Channel sampling in the 1930's indicated up to 1,133.98 g/t Au from surface sampling of the No. 3 vein. Assay results indicated rather higher gold values from any other producing mine in the area. This encourage the pre-planning for development work by Bilmac, and later New Campbell Island.
Quartz veining along with quartz flooding are hosted in intermediate tuff in strong shearing with intrusions of diorite. A contact is made between the Granitodiorite of the Centennial Stock that traverses the area on the north side of the Stenabaugh gold Prospect in Keewatin Greenstone that's apart of the Michipicoten-Monk-Moon Lake-Greenstone Belt. It appears that more higher-grade gold values are distributed along the contacts of the Granodiorite, and are largely accossiated with intermediate tuff.
The outcrop exposure in the northern part of the Michipicoten River is scarce. Other problems relating to the area was the overburden thickness that varied from a few feet to over 200 feet. The overburden is glaciafluvial in origin and comprises of fine grained sand with clay and silt zones. Boulders were encountered near the contact with bedrock and could be used as an indicator of approaching bedrock. Because of thickness and composition of the till, problems were encountered in drilling the overburden and one hole in 1984 was lost at 280 feet in overburden.
The property is situated in the Wawa volcanic belt of the Superior Province of the Canadian Shield. The Archean metavolcanic and metasedimentary rocks of the volcanic belt have been intruded by later Archean age ultrabasic to granitic rocks of the Centennial Stock. Later diabase, gabbro, and lamprophyre dykes and sills intrude all rocks in the area. The metasediments and metavolcanics are often found to be interlayered. Observation under taken had indicated that the metavolcanics strike 110-degrees to 120-degrees and dip steeply to the southwest on the surface and are folded slightly with depth so that they end up dipping steeply to the northeast. Numerous quartz veins along with quartz flooding are known to occur in small shear zones and lineation's that are found in both the Metavolcanic and Metasedimentary rocks. The volcanics comprise of acid pyroclastics, and flows, intrusive stocks, associated with mineralized zones and are believed to be of a common magnetic source. The ore zones which are associated with the acid intrusives occur in fracture filling or replacement of the favourable rocks. These volcanics are known to also range in composition from andesite to ryholite, and had interbedded tuffs, chert, and iron formation. Closely associated with these volcanics is a series of acid porpyritic intrusives. These intrusives appear as large and small masse particullarly in the northeast portion of the claims. A large body of acid porphyritic intrusives also occur in the general area to the east of the Stenabaugh Property.