Copper Creek

Prospect in Alaska, United States with commodity Copper

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10094064
MRDS ID A012795
Record type Site
Current site name Copper Creek

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -165.17998, 64.88013 (WGS84)
Relative position The Copper Creek occurrence is in the valley of Copper Creek about 0.6 mile above the confluence of Copper Creek and Nugget Creek. Nugget Creek is a east tributary to lower Grand Central River. Copper Creek heads on hill 2160. The occurrence is at an elevation of about 800 feet. It is locality 5 of Hummel (1962 [MF 248]) and locality 17 of Cobb (1972 [MF 463], 1978 [OFR 78-93]).
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska

Commodities

Commodity Importance
Copper Primary

Materials information

Materials Type of material
Azurite Ore
Bornite Ore
Malachite Ore
Calcite Gangue
Quartz Gangue

Alteration

  • (Local) Marble is bleached and contains bornite and secondary copper carbonate minerals in silica-rich zones, and oxidation.

Host and associated rocks

  • Host or associated Host
    Rock type Sedimentary Rock > Carbonate > Limestone

Nearby scientific data

(1) -165.17998, 64.88013

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = An incline was driven on mineralized marble on the east side of Copper Creek; it showed roughly stratabound bornite and copper carbonate minerals in bleached marble with silica-rich zones (Cathcart, 1922). Nearby schist is cut by sulfide-bearing quartz-calcite veins. Country rock at the Copper Creek occurrence is dominantly graphitic and calcareous schist with some marble layers. Locally, marble has been bleached from a characteristic blue-gray color to white. One zone about 12 feet thick has been bleached; in other places altered white marble alternates with less altered bluish marble to form a banded unit (Cathcart, 1922, p. 219-220). The rocks mainly strike northeast and dip southeast (Hummel, 1962 [MF 248]). Near the prospect, marble layers as much as 100 feet thick are interlayered with schist. This prospect appears to have similarities to several other copper-bearing deposits in the eastern Teller quadrangle (for example, the Ward mine, Hudson, 1998, TE071) and in the western Solomon quadrangle (for example, the Wheeler mine, Hudson, 1999, SO172).? the metamorphic rocks here are part of the Nome Group derived from Precambrian to early Paleozoic protoliths (Thurston, 1985; Till and Dumoulin, 1994). The Nome Group underwent regional blueschist facies metamorphism in the Late Jurassic or Early Cretaceous (Sainsbury, Coleman, and Kachadoorian, 1970; Forbes and others, 1984; Thurston, 1985; Armstrong and others, 1986; Hannula and McWilliams, 1995). The blueschist facies rocks were recrystallized to greenschist facies or higher metamorphic grades in conjunction with regional extension, crustal melting, and magmatism in the mid-Cretaceous (Hudson and Arth, 1983; Miller and Hudson, 1991; Miller and others, 1992; Dumitru and others, 1995; Hannula and others, 1995; Hudson, 1994; Amato and others, 1994; Amato and Wright, 1997, 1998). Lode gold mineralization on Seward Peninsula is mostly related to the higher temperature metamorphism in the mid-Cretaceous (Apodoca, 1994; Ford, 1993 [thesis]; Ford and Snee, 1996; Goldfarb and others, 1997). The origin of the nearly stratabound copper deposits is enigmatic. They could have formed in the Proterozoic, Paleozoic or, as replacement deposits, in the Mesozoic.
  • Age = Late Proterozoic, early Paleozoic, or mid-Cretaceous.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Prospect
Commodity type Metallic

Comments on exploration

  • Status = Inactive

Mining district

District name Nome

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Early prospecting occurred here before 1913 (Moffit, 1913); an adit had been driven about 25 feet and abandoned. Cathcart (1922) reported a shallow shaft and incline were opened on the west side of the creek; about 200 feet to the east, the zone was explored with an incline. When visited by Cathcart, the incline was filled with ice at a depth of about 20 feet.

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Mineral Resources Data System MRDS A012795
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF NM053

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

    Cathcart, S.H., 1922, Metalliferous lodes in southern Seward Peninsula: U.S. Geological Survey Bulletin 722, p. 163-261.

  • Deposit

    Hummel, C.L., 1962, Preliminary geologic map of the Nome D-1 quadrangle, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-248, 1 sheet, scale 1:63,360.

  • Deposit

    Sainsbury, C.L., Coleman, R.G., and Kachadoorian, Reuben, 1970, Blueschist and related greenschist faces rocks of the Seward Peninsula, Alaska, in Geological Survey research 1970: U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 700-B, p. B33-B42.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., 1972, Metallic mineral resources map of the Nome quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Miscellaneous Field Studies Map MF-463, 2 sheets, scale 1:250,000.

  • Deposit

    Cobb, E.H., 1978, Summary of references to mineral occurrences (other than mineral fuels and construction materials) in the Nome quadrangle, Alaska: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File report 78-93, 213 p.

  • Deposit

    Hudson, T.L., and Arth, J. G., 1983, Tin-granites of Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 94, p. 768-790.

  • Deposit

    Forbes, R.B., Evans, B.W., and Thurston, S.P., 1984, Regional progressive high-pressure metamorphism, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Journal of Metamorphic Geology, v. 2, p. 43-54.

  • Deposit

    Thurston, S.P., 1985, Structure, petrology, and metamorphic history of the Nome Group blueschist terrane, Salmon Lake area, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 96, p. 600-617.

  • Deposit

    Armstrong, R.L., Harakal, J.E., Forbes, R.B., Evans, B.W., and Thurston, S.P., 1986, Rb-Sr and K-Ar study of metamorphic rocks of the Seward Peninsula and southern Brooks Range, Alaska, in Evans, B.W., and Brown, E.H., eds., Blueschists and eclogites: Geological Society of America Memoir 164, p. 184-203.

  • Deposit

    Miller, E.L., and Hudson, T.L., 1991, Mid-Cretaceous extensional fragmentation of a Jurassic-Early Cretaceous compressional orogen, Alaska: Tectonics, v. 10, p. 781-796.

  • Deposit

    Miller, E.L., Calvert, A.T., and Little, T.A., 1992, Strain-collapsed metamorphic isograds in a sillimanite gneiss dome, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Geology, v. 20, p. 487-490.

  • Deposit

    Ford, R.C., 1993, Geology, geochemistry, and age of gold lodes at Bluff and Mt. Distin, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Golden, Colorado School of Mines, Ph.D. dissertation, 302 p.

  • Deposit

    Apodoca, L. E., 1994, Genesis of lode gold deposits of the Rock Creek area, Nome mining district, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Boulder, Colorado, University of Colorado, Ph.D. dissertation, 208 p.

  • Deposit

    Hudson, T.L. 1994, Crustal melting events in Alaska, in Plafker, G., and Berg, H. C., eds., The Geology of Alaska: Boulder, Colorado, Geological Society of America, The Geology of North America, v. G-1, p. 657-670.

  • Deposit

    Till, A.B., and Dumoulin, J.A, 1994, Geology of Seward Peninsula and St. Lawrence Island, in Plafker, G., and Berg, H.C., eds., The Geology of Alaska: Geological Society of America, The Geology of North America, DNAG, v. G-1, p. 141-152.

  • Deposit

    Amato, J.M., Wright, J.E., Gans, P.B., and Miller, E.L., 1994, Magmatically induced metamorphism and deformation in the Kigluaik gneiss dome, Seward Peninsula, Alaska: Tectonics, v. 13, p. 515-527.

  • Deposit

    Dumitru, T.A., Miller, E.L., O'Sullivan, P.B., Amato, J.M., Hannula, K.A., Calvert, A.T., and Gans, P.B., 1995, Cretaceous to Recent extension in the Bering Strait region, Alaska: Tectonics, v. 14, p. 549-563.

  • Deposit

    Hannula, K.A., Miller, E.L., Dumitru, T.A., Lee, Jeffrey, and Rubin, C.M., 1995, Structural and metamorphic relations in the southwest Seward Peninsula, Alaska; Crustal extension and the unroofing of blueschists: Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 107, p. 536-553.

  • Deposit

    Hannula, K.A., and McWilliams, M.O., 1995, Reconsideration of the age of blueschist facies metamorphism on the Seward Peninusla, Alaska, based on phengite 40Ar/39Ar results: Journal of Metamorphic Geology, v. 13, p. 125-139.

  • Deposit

    Ford, R.C., and Snee, L.W., 1996, 40Ar/39Ar thermochronology of white mica from the Nome district, Alaska: The first ages of lode sources to placer gold deposits in the Seward Peninsula: Economic Geology, v. 91, p. 213-220.

  • Deposit

    Goldfarb, R.J., Miller, L.D., Leach, D.L., and Snee, L.W, 1997, Gold deposits in metamorphic rocks in Alaska, in Goldfarb, R.J., and Miller, L.D., eds., Mineral deposits of Alaska: Economic Geology Monograph 9, 482 p.

  • Deposit

    Amato, J.M., and Wright, J.E., 1997, Potassic mafic magmatism in the Kigluaik gneiss dome, northern Alaska -- A geochemical study of arc magmatism in an extensional tectonic setting: Journal of Geophysical Research, v. B102, no. 4, p. 8065-8084.

  • Deposit

    Amato, J.M., and Wright, J.E., 1998, Geochronologic investigations of magmatism and metamorphism within the Kigluaik Mountains gneiss dome, Seward Peninsula, Alaska, in Clough, J.G., and Larson, Frank, eds., Short Notes on Alaskan Geology 1997: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Professional Report 118a, p. 1-21.

  • Deposit

    Hudson, T.L, 1998, Alaska Resource Data File, Teller quadrangle: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 98-328, 235 p.

  • Deposit

    Hudson, T.L., 1999, Alaska Resource Data File, Solomon quadrangle: U.S. Geological Survey Open-File Report 99-573, 360 p.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = Cathcart, 1922

General comments

Subject category Comment text
Deposit Model Name = Carbonate-hosted, sulfide-bearing silica-rich rock.

Reporter information

Type Date Name Affiliation Comment
Reporter 22-OCT-99 Hawley, C.C. Hawley Resource Group
Reporter 22-OCT-99 Travis L. Hudson Hawley Resource Group