The Red October underground mine is a complex structurally controlled narrow vein high grade gold deposit located in the Laverton Greenstone Belt which hosts a number of world class and emerging gold mines with resources of >25M oz gold, including Sunrise Dam, Mt Morgans, Butchers Well, Granny Smith, Wallaby and Fortitude.
First production at Red October commenced as open pit mining in 1999 by Gwalia where the mine produced 539kt @ 6.5g/t for 113koz between 1999 and 2002. The operation moved underground 2012 under Saracen, and Matsa between 2018 and 2021.
The mine has since produced in excess of 1.8Mt @ 6.1g/t for 342koz from open pit and underground up to Matsa placing the mine in care and maintenance in 2021.
The project area at Red October covers 44km2 and consists of six granted Mining Leases (ML’s), an extensive well-maintained underground mine, a 68-person camp, offices, workshops and exploration base, wet and dry messes, underground mine equipment.
Whilst the mine is currently in care and maintenance, the company is evaluating a potential whole of mine approach to exploration, development and production options. A JORC resource of 199,000oz @ 6.2g/t Au currently exists at the Red October underground mine and there is firm belief in Matsa that this number can increase with additional exploration.
Historical and recent drilling results highlight the exploration potential that still remains at Red October, where economic type grades have been widely intersected both along strike of the main ROSZ lode as well as the parallel mineralised structures such as Lionfish (to the west) and Marlin (to the east) lodes. To the north recent development by Matsa and limited drilling is likely to lead to additional modelling of the Costello lode which could provide a shallow near term mining option with further work.
Exploration drilling targets include the traditional mining areas such as the Marlin and ROSZ as well as the recently targeted Lionfish, Dory & Nemo lodes.
In the resource drilling space, with 411kt @ 6.3g/t of resources sitting in the Inferred category it is expected that drilling can be completed to upgrade these to Indicated and Measured categories, however the strategic outlook is to grow the resource first, the results which will feed into a whole of mine development and mining study.High grade gold mineralisation associated with the Red October Shear Zone (ROSZ) is located in a strongly deformed steeply NW dipping sequence made up of ultramafic volcanic rocks, interflow sediments and basalts. Much of the deformation focused by the ROSZ has been accommodated by fine grained interflow sediments which separate the dominantly ultramafic hanging wall sequence in the NW and the tholeiitic basalt sequence in the SE. Mineralisation within and adjacent to the ROSZ is associated with alteration dominated by development of sericite, pyrite, pyrrhotite, arsenopyrite and carbonate. The deposit occurs under 2-12m of lacustrine sediments with weathering in basement rocks typically extending to a depth of 60-85m.
Matsa, via external consultants, is reviewing existing resources and known mineralisation to produce a conceptual mining inventory using MSO. The results of this study will provide the company with the information necessary to implement a robust and cohesive exploration and development strategy for Red October.