REVIEW ARTICLE - As published in Paydirt, the December '99/January 2000 issue
NewGold '99 - AMF International Study Tour
By Mike Porter
Despite ever declining prices over the last few years, the Australian gold industry has continued to produce new discoveries,
new cost competitive mines and advances in the understanding of gold occurrence.
In doing so it has built an enviable reputation throughout the world.
NewGold '99, the latest in the continuing series of AMF International Study Tours focussed on the new Australian gold
discoveries and mines of the last few years.
It attracted participants from around the world. They ranged from middle level geologists to exploration managers and
directors, from Australian and Canadian juniors through to three of the four largest gold producers in the world.
The tour was scheduled to immediately follow the New Generation Gold Mines Conference in Perth and included several of the more
significant new gold discoveries covered by that conference. Most of these are still only drill grids on an undisturbed surface.
In addition, the itinerary took in several major new mines, some still in the oxide zone, others exploiting primary ore, as well as a
few established mature mines in the same district.
The tour included a wide variety of styles of mineralisation, distributed over 600 km of the Eastern Gold Fields, extending from
south of Kalgoorlie to north of Wiluna. However, it also incorporated a representative concentration of deposits around Laverton
to allow an appreciation of the framework of an individual district within the greenstone belt.
At each site experienced mine and project staff gave expert briefings on the regional and local geological setting, structure,
mineralisation, exploration, evaluation and grade control, followed by field traverses and mine inspections, as well as the
opportunity to study drill core in detail.
The tour took in seven new gold discoveries and mines, all in just four days.
After an early flight from Perth on the morning of Wednesday 24 November it started with the Ghost Crab orebody at Newcrest
Mining Ltd's Mt Marion mine, part of the New Celebration Complex, and then on to AMX Resources Ltd's granite hosted Golden
Cities deposits, both in the Kalgoorlie district.
At Laverton, Placer (Granny Smith) Pty Ltd and Acacia Resources Ltd combined to provide a superb program that took in the Sunrise
Dam-Cleo and Sunrise mines, the old Granny Smith pits and the new Wallaby project, possibly one of the most significant Australian
gold discoveries of recent years. This was followed by the Chatterbox Shear Zone Project of Metex Resources NL.
On the final day, Saturday 27 November, the group flew north by charter aircraft to the Wiluna district to take in Great Central
Mines Ltd's Jundee-Nimary operation before flying back to Perth in the late afternoon to conclude the itinerary.
This tour was only possible through the generosity and understanding of the companies who allowed access to their mines and projects,
and its success was a testimony to the professionalism of those who work within the Australian gold industry.
The Series Continues
This was the ninth such tour conducted by the AMF over the last three years. In all, these have visited almost 100 of the world's most important ore deposits, in North and South America, Africa, Europe, Asia and Australasia.
These tours have been attended by geologists from all continents and from most of the worlds most important mining and exploration
Five future tours are currently in various stages of development. These are:
- Nickel 2000 that will visit the worlds most important nickel deposits, both laterite and sulphide, as three modules in mid 2000.
- Africa 2000 taking in the gold mines of east and west Africa in two separate modules during October-November 2000.
- FeOx 2000 - to the Iron Oxide Copper-Gold and related deposits around Australia in December 2000.
- Africa-B 2001, visiting the mafic associated mineralisation of southern Africa and base metal orebodies of southern and central Africa as two modules, in mid 2001.
- Eldorado 2001 in two modules visiting the fabulous New World Gold and Iron Oxide Copper-Gold Deposits of South America in the Andes and the Archaean-Proterozoic shields respectively in late 2001.
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For more information contact: T M (Mike) Porter, of Porter GeoConsultancy (firstname.lastname@example.org)
This was another of the International Study Tours designed, developed, organised and escorted by T M (Mike) Porter of Porter GeoConsultancy Pty Ltd (PGC) in joint venture with the Australian Mineral Foundation (AMF). While the reputation and support of the AMF contributed to the establishment of the tours, after it ceased trading at the end of 2001, PGC has continued to develop, organise and manage the tour series.
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