The Lost Pond property carries dual attractions, uranium and rare earth elements (REE). Initial prospecting determined a 200 m wide uranium mineralisation zone and drilling discovered 0.045% U3O8 over 12.3 m core length at 72 m depth. In addition, the high grade nature of the rare earth elements ("REE") mineralization, multiple zones, proximity to infrastructure, and the well defined nature of the geophysical anomaly encouraged Kirrin to option the property and plan further drilling in 2008. Kirrin's drilling extended the uranium discovery by targeting the down-plunge extent of the zone and hit the target at 235.4 m, resulting in an intersection of 0.038% U3O8 over 20.1 m.
Uranium mineralization at Lost Pond remains open to depth and future drilling will pursue the potential that the width and grade of the zone continues to increase in the down plunge direction.
Lost Pond is located in western Newfoundland, Canada. Stephenville, with a population of 25,000 people including surrounding areas, is the local service centre for the southwestern part of the island and is just 30 km east. Lost Pond is within proximity to the province's west coast economic centre at Corner Brook and is easily accessible. The Trans Canada Highway and existing power lines run through the property, as well as an extensive network of logging roads and pre-existing access routes.
The historic uranium showing (U2 area) at Lost Pond was discovered by Shell Minerals in 1981, and after limited work, culminated in the completion of two short trenches. No further uranium exploration was done until 2006 when Lost Pond was acquired by Ucore Uranium Inc. (Ucore). Since acquisition, Ucore has completed airborne geophysics, prospecting on the regional airborne targets and detailed grid work and target testing on the U2 and U3 (REE area) showings.
Kirrin has an option agreement with Ucore allowing Kirrin to earn a 50% interest in the Lost Pond uranium and REE property. The transaction remains subject to contract and to regulatory approval. Under a September 2008 letter agreement, Kirrin may earn a 50% interest in the Lost Pond property over four years by spending $2,600,000 on exploration, including a minimum first year commitment of $700,000, and issuing 300,000 shares to Ucore, including 50,000 shares on signing.
Upon Kirrin fulfilling its earn-in obligations, the parties will form a 50:50 joint venture, with each partner contributing its pro-rata share of future expenditures, or Ucore may elect to convert to a 35% interest, which will be carried through to completion of a pre-feasibility study. If either party dilutes its interest to less than 10% in the joint venture, its interest shall be converted to a royalty of 1% or 1.5% of gross sales, depending on underlying royalties, of which 0.5% may be bought-out for $500,000.
The Lost Pond property comprises 757 contiguous claims, spanning a territory in excess of 189 square km.
The property straddles the southern Long Range Mountains and extends southwest into St. George's Basin. The highlands are generally underlain by Proterozoic to late Cambrian aged rocks of the Humber Zone's Long Range Complex, which consists of a gneissic complex with interlayed metasedimentary units and a later granite intrusive suite. In the Lost Pond area, this basement Complex is overlain by a much younger Palaeozoic sequence of sub-aerial clastic sedimentary rocks (Carboniferous Cover) of the Bay St. George Lowlands. The contact between the Basement rocks and the younger basin stratigraphy of the Bay St. George Lowlands is a major unconformity, often modified by later thrust faulting. An extensive radioactive boulder field has been traced to a bedrock source within the project's claim boundary.
Exploration Programs and Results
To July 2008, Ucore expended $1.8 million on the Lost Pond property and its exploration work defined uranium mineralization as a 200 metre wide 'structural/alteration corridor' hosting the Cataclastic Zone (up to 0.045% U3O8 over 12.3 m core length) and parallel higher grade fracture controlled mineralization (up to 0.752% U3O8 over 0.5 metres core length). At the U3 grid area, REE mineralization is closely coincident with a distinctive magnetic high. Three drill holes spaced at 50 metres apart intersected similar mineralization with a best intersection of 4.47% (REE oxides + Y2O3) over 5.64 metres core length. The REE include a total of 15 lanthanoid elements plus yttrium. Grades are usually reported as calculated rare earth oxides (REO). Rare earths are used predominantly in the manufacture of permanent magnets, metal alloys, batteries catalysts, and glass. Growth in demand over the past four years has exceeded 10% per year and growth is expected to remain strong at around 10% over the next few years.
In November 2008, Kirrin commenced a 2,500 m drilling program with the following results:
U2 Cataclastic Zone Grid: Five holes (LP08-05, 06, 06B, 07 and 21) targeted the Cataclastic Zone in the area which had previous intersections up to 0.045% U3O8 over 12.3 m. LP08-05 intersected a 4.0 m section of the alteration/structural zone starting at a down-hole depth of 139.05 m. LP08-06A was abandoned after 19 m due to blocky ground, whereas LP08-06B and 07 intersected the horizon above its now projected plunge. The final hole, LP08-21, targeted the down-plunge extent of the zone and hit the target at 235.4 m, resulting in an intersection of 0.038% U3O8 over 20.1 m, including 0.061% U3O8 over 3.0 m. The Cataclastic Zone is interpreted as a 75° dipping zone and the true widths are approx. 75% to 80% of the down-hole drill intercepts. The zone is apparently open down-plunge and additional drilling is planned. Management's interpretation of the U2 Cataclastic Zone longitudinal section can be viewed on the diagram 'Lost Pond longsection Mar30 09'
Three other holes on the U2 Cataclastic Zone grid (LP08-08, 09 and10) tested uranium geochemistry anomalies located 400 m to 800 m away from the known mineralization and did not encounter any significant uranium zones. The following Table lists all the holes and anomalous results from this latest stage of drilling on the U2 Cataclastic Zone.
|Azimuth||Dip||From (m)|| To
|LP08-06A||9,968||10,170||93||50||Abandoned in broken ground|
|LP08-07||10,000||10,365||272||60||No Significant Values|
|LP08-08||9,900||10,820||272||50||No Significant Values|
|LP08-08B||9,900||10,800||272||50||No Significant Values|
|LP08-09||10,300||10,475||272||50||No Significant Values|
|LP08-10||10,700||10,675||272||50||No Significant Values|
|To 09/2008:||~$1,800,000||(by Ucore)|
|Kirrin to 12/2009||$724,000|
Comments on uranium exploration results to October 2008:
Ucore's interest at Lost Pond centred on the historic uranium showing (U2) discovered by Shell Minerals. Shell's limited field work in 1981 and 1982 culminated in the completion of two short trenches. There was no further uranium exploration until 2006 when the property was acquired by the underlying vendors. Between 2006 and October 2008, Ucore completed airborne geophysics and follow-up on the regional airborne targets, resulting in a number of other uranium and REE discoveries. The following is a brief summary of Ucore's work:
U2 Grid: Work included 30 km of line cutting, ground magnetics, detailed geological mapping, a Track-Etch survey, trenching and diamond drilling. Uranium mineralization has been located in a number of zones within a 200 m wide alteration/structural corridor. There is a strong association of the uranium mineralization with hematite/chlorite alteration and brecciation. Channel samples taken during the trenching program included 0.189% U3O8 over 3.0 m and 0.752% U3O8 over 0.5 m.
Drilling was carried out in two phases (January to March 2007 and December 2007 to January 2008) resulting in a total of 1,915 m of drilling in 15 holes. At the end of the second phase of drilling, available holes were probed with a down-hole gamma ray logger. Due to the nature of the ground, only 50% of the holes could be probed. The drill program gave a much better understanding of the north-south striking U2 structural corridor, which is characterized by variable amounts of hematite, magnetite and chlorite alteration. The unit is recognizable as feldspar augen gneiss where alteration and fracturing is least intense. The augen gneiss changes to a heavily hematite fractured and brecciated brick red rock towards the centre of the heavy alteration, often resembling a fine grained syenite. Within the Cataclastic Zone, near the eastern boundary of the corridor, the rock takes on a thick red to green banded appearance with a coarse sandy texture, which is interpreted as a cataclastite/shear zone. There are three styles of uranium mineralization recognized to date:
Fracture Controlled - mineralization is associated with medium to high grade uranium/hematite/chlorite fracture zones which are best represented by the Dome 1 and Dome 2 showings. These are located on the west side of the U2 structural corridor, are 0.5 to 3.0 m wide, and can be followed along strike for upwards to 50 m. The fracture zones are represented by friable and broken material, and host rocks are often poorly consolidated resulting in poor to no core recovery. This caused caving in these holes which inhibited access for the down-hole probe. Six holes were drilled across the Dome 1 and Dome 2 trends.
Breccia - identified in holes 07-03 and 07-13, this mineralization is characterized by a coarse breccia with moderate hematite alteration generally in the matrix. It can be traced sporadically over 150 m strike length and is up to 75 m thick. Uranium results are generally low, in the 30 ppm to 100 ppm range, and may be a halo to better mineralization at depth.
Cataclastite Zone - the best uranium values were obtained from the east side of the structural corridor. Trenching initially uncovered the zone as heavily altered schist, although uranium values were low. Subsequent drilling better defined the style of mineralization as an area of variable hematite/chlorite/magnetite/carbonate alteration within a cataclastite unit. The best uranium values identified were obtained in drill hole LP-07-02, which assayed 0.045% U3O8 over 12.3 m core length.
Lost Pond regional targets
1) Northcott Showings: Located in the centre of the claims, the Northcott claim hosts three different showings within a one square kilometre area. Trenching and channel sampling were completed during the fall of 2007; however this work indicated that additional mineralization remains unexposed within a larger area (up to 3.5 square km's of mapped host rock). Channel rock sample results include 0.12 % U3O8 over 4 m, including 0.17% U3O8 over 2.5 m. A grid has been cut over these showings and geophysics has been completed.
2) Roadside Outcrop Hematite Zone: The showing is located 4 km west of the U2 grid and 2.5 km south of the Northcott licence. Initial prospecting discovered heavy hematite/biotite/chlorite alteration in rubbly outcrop along an old logging road. Grab rock samples contained up to 0.14 % U3O8. Subsequent excavator work and channel rock sampling followed the mineralization for 30 m. The hematite/uranium mineralization continues under overburden east and west, along strike, and additional excavator work will be required. Results from the limited channel sampling include 0.02 % U3O8 over 2.5 m including 0.07% U3O8 over 0.5 m.
3)Lost Pond East: Initial prospecting in the eastern section of the property located float consisting of highly altered material (massive biotite/manganese) which assayed as high as 1.8% U3O8 in rock grab samples. Further prospecting uncovered pegmatite sub-crop with values up to 0.22% U3O8. Excavator trenching and channel rock sampling was carried out across the chlorite zones; however the source for the high grade samples was not discovered. Results include 0.02% U3O8 over 3 m.
4) Southwest Bay of Grand Lake: Uranium mineralization was discovered on a steep rugged slope on the north side of the Southwest Bay of Grand Lake. The mineralization is within bedrock and float of syenite near the contact with supracrustal rocks made up of carbonate and clastic sediments. Two distinct radiometric anomalies are present in the area, one of which is proximal to a north-east / south-west trending granite/sandstone contact. Assay values up to 0.11% U3O8 in rock grab samples were obtained from limited prospecting. Additional prospecting, sampling and mapping is planned to follow-up the results obtained, and grid work is anticipated after this.