Exploits Discovery expands gold potential at Jonathanís Pond, Newfoundland

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Initial exploration results from the Jonathan’s Pond gold project in Newfoundland, being developed by Exploits Discovery Corp. (CSE:NFLD), have extended the strike length to over 250 meters, and revealed that the mineralization is open along the vein’s strike and in the wall rock.

The Nov. 19 news release set the junior’s stock price aflame, adding 13 cents for a gain of 22.8% at the close of trading, Thursday.

Deep-seated structures

The Exploits Gold Belt Area Play in the Canadian province of Newfoundland-Labrador may be one of the most deep-seated, structural gold environments on the planet. During a period known as the Taconic orogeny that lasted from 480 to 430 million years ago, the continental plates of Laurentia and Gondwana collided, closing the body of water between them called the Iapetus Ocean. The islands we now know as Newfoundland, Ireland and Great Britain, were crushed between the continental plates, and deep crustal breaks that remained as active fluid conduits for millions of years were created. The image below shows the five major tectonic breaks that have been traced back to their origins over 400 million years ago, and are identifiable across the continents for thousands of kilometers.

These deep crustal breaks, it has been found, are important mineralizing structures for numerous multi-million-ounce gold deposits. The Exploits Subzone is bracketed by the Dog Bay Line (DBL) and the Gander River Ultramafic Belt (GRUB) and contains the majority of Newfoundland's gold mineral occurrences and exploration efforts, including New Found Gold's (TSXV:NFG) 2019 discovery of 92.86 g/t Au over 19m near surface at the Keat’s zone of its Queensway project.

The Exploits Subzone Gold Belt has been the focus of major staking and financing throughout 2020, with increased exploration activities forecasted in the area, moving into 2021.

What makes the Exploits Subzone such a prime target for gold discovery? Prominent regional thrust faulting connected, and parallel, to the DBL and GRUB provide conduits for gold bearing fluids, produced deep with the crust, to migrate to the near surface and be deposited in thrust faults and secondary traps off of these structures.

Millions of years of movement on these deep seated structures and parallel faut systems in sedimentary and volcanic rocks creates a highly prospective gold depositional environment.

The Exploits Subzone features abundant reactivation features such as sericite seams, iron-rich carbonate hydrothermal alteration and quartz-carbonate veinlets.

Most gold properties overlie one of the deep-seated structures Newfoundland is famous for, and have a secondary structure, like an anticline, splay or sub-splay, that provides a trap for the gold mineralization.

Exploits Discovery Corp. (CSE:NFLD)

Exploits Discovery Corp. (CSE:NFLD) is developing seven gold projects that have geological, geochemical and structural settings comparable either to New Found Gold’s Queensway project, or Marathon Gold’s (TSX:MOZ) Valentine Lake deposit. These include Mt. Peyton, Jonathan’s Pond, Middle Ridge and True Grit. (on the map below, NFLD’s projects appear in red, at the core of and on the northeast and southwest ends of the 240-km-long Exploits Gold Belt Area Play).

The Vancouver-based company is the largest land owner in the region, with 2,041 square kilometers spanning the Exploits Subzone, which hosts over 200 km of deep-seated structures including the Appleton Fault, Dog Bay Line, GRUB Line and Mt. Peyton Linear.

The Appleton Fault was the focus of New Found Gold’s 2019 monster drill result, and last month’s 41.2 g/t Au over 4.75m and 25.4 g/t Au over 5.15m at NFG's Lotto zone, as well as advanced exploration work by Labrador Gold (TSXV:LAB) on its Kingsway project.

Exploits Discovery is working with an exploration model comparable to the Fosterville mine in Australia, which contains high-grade, structurally hosted gold. This model has also been proven by New Found Gold’s success at its Keats and Lotto zones at Queensway, shown in blue in the above map.

The Fosterville project was scooped up by Kirkland Lake Gold (TSX:KL) in 2016 through a merger.

At the beginning of 2017, the combined company, worth around $2.4 billion, reported stellar intercepts of 1,429 g/t Au over 15.15 meters, 356 g/t Au over 7.2m and 83.9 g/t Au over 3.5m.

At the site of these hits, the Swan zone, KL has mined 1.5 million ounces over the past three years, with a remaining mineral reserve of 1.6Moz at a whopping 38.6 g/t Au. The mine produces gold for just $127 per ounce, and has an AISC of $293/oz, making Fosterville the lowest-cost gold producer in the world. The attractive economics has made Kirkland Lake money hand over fist, driving its market cap from C$2.4 billion to $14.3 billion, at last count.

Back to Exploits Discovery, magnetic and Very Low Frequency (VLF) geophysical surveys have indicated numerous prospective structures on its Dog Bay, Mt. Peyton, True Grit and Jonathan’s Pond projects. Grades up to 164 g/t Au were assayed in outcrops, along with visible gold found in boulders up to 700 g/t.

Jonathan’s Pond

At Jonathan’s Pond, 17 km NE of Queensway, historical trenching by local prospectors revealed visible gold in quartz veins up to 3m wide, that was never assayed (see pic below).

Magnetic geophysical signatures outline multiple highly prospective structures beneath the overburden. The property is located along the GRUB Line fault, a major crustal structure, and is bounded by the Jonathan’s Pond Linear fault.

Outcrop and float samples with gold values up to 29 g/t Au and 700 g/t Au, respectively, in trenches and till samples up to 27,000 ppb Au were found on westerly claims. The magnetic geophysical signatures outline multiple highly prospective structures beneath overburden.

This week, Exploits Discovery announced that Jonathan’s Pond hosts visible gold-bearing quartz veins, assaying up to 27.96 g/t Au. Moreover, outcrop stripping has extended the strike length of the Jonathan’s Pond (JP) vein to 250m, and in the wall rock. Details are as follows:

  • To date the company has completed 350 meters of trenching at Jonathan’s Pond and is currently channel sampling the full extent of trenched bedrock in four new trenches; results are expected in early December.

  • An initial 16 meters of trench sampling in trench JP 4 has returned assays of 0.44 parts per million (ppm) Au over 5 meters, including 1 meter at 0.80 ppm Au. This represents discovery of additional mineralization over 60 meters northwest of the JP vein.

Nine grab samples taken from the silicified ultramafic host rock, in contact with the quartz vein, returned values up to 14.4 g/t Au which according to the company, demonstrates that the gold mineralization is not constrained to the primary quartz veins. NFLD also notes, This work demonstrates that the GRUB Line, and Jonathan’s Pond in particular, has similar gold potential to that seen on the Appleton Fault Zone which lies to the west in the core of the Exploits Subzone Gold Belt.

“These results clearly merit further work at the Jonathan’s Pond property,” President & CEO Michael Collins commented. “This work also validates the Company’s thesis that the gold potential of the Exploits Subzone extends out from the Appleton Fault Zone to other deep-seated regional structures including the GRUB Line and the Dog Bay Line. Exploits has built a significant portfolio of projects that target all three regional structures, and we look forward to demonstrating their value to the market.”

Although the new trenches have not yet been sampled, Exploits believes the rock exposed in the trenches demonstrates that there are sub parallel veins and sulphide mineralization in the country rock around the JP vein. The JP vein is part of the Gander River Ultramafic Belt, (“GRUB”) system, a deep-seated structure controlling fluid flow and mineralization, and bounding the Exploits Subzone Belt to the East for a distance of over 200 km.  Exploits trenching has defined mineralized rock to the east and west of the JP vein that wasn’t uncovered historically.

Exploration to date posits that the large, northeast-trending quartz veins at Jonathan’s Pond were zones of faulting and shearing that provided a pathway for mineral-enriched fluids to flow. Narrow quartz veins up to 5 cm-wide occur on the west side of the JP vein for 75m, open to the west, and form crosscutting stockworks adjacent to the large quartz vein. They are associated with intense ankerite alteration and very fine visible gold was noted in two areas.

Exploits is currently sampling four trenches perpendicular to the main quartz vein. An initial 16 meters was sampled by chipping and sawing continuous samples over 1-meter intervals. As stated, the initial samples returned 0.44 ppm Au over 5m, including 1m at 0.80 ppm Au. The fact that these results occur up to 60m northwest of the main quartz vein, greatly increases the size of the prospect, according to NFLD.


I continue to be impressed by Exploits’ success thus far, in advancing its Newfoundland gold projects.

Its good fortune, and skill, comes via the acquisition of four very promising gold properties, all located within the Exploits Subzone of Central Newfoundland. This is where the majority of the province’s gold occurrences and exploration, including New Found Gold’s Queensway discovery and Marathon Gold, are all situated. To be a significant player in the Exploits Gold Belt Area Play your property needs to overlie a deep-seated structure, and have a secondary structure that provides a trap for gold mineralization.

For me, Exploits Discovery Corp. (CSE:NFLD) is a “buy and hold” play, giving shareholders the opportunity to benefit from spin-outs and/or discovery holes, while starting out in a company with a tight share structure and experienced management that knows how to accumulate properties and prioritize them.

Exploits Discovery Corp.
Cdn$0.74, 2020.11.20
Shares Outstanding 59,711,302
Market cap Cdn$44.18m
NFLD website


Richard (Rick) Mills
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