Prospect in Alaska, United States with commodities Silver, Gold, Arsenic, Bismuth, Molybdenum, Lead, Antimony, Zinc

Geologic information

Identification information

Deposit ID 10307827
Record type Site
Current site name Vinasale

Geographic coordinates

Geographic coordinates: -155.69291, 62.70945 (WGS84)
Relative position The Vinasale deposit is located about 2,000 feet (610 m) from the summit of Vinasale Mountain at an elevation of 1,520 feet (463 m) in the NW1/4 sec. 8, T. 30 N., R. 34 W., of the Seward Meridian. The Vinasale deposit is about 1.5 kilometers due east of the Kuskokwim River and 29 kilometers (18 air miles) south of McGrath, Alaska. The reporter visited the site in 1977 and 1992.
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Geographic areas

Country State
United States Alaska


Commodity Importance
Silver Primary
Gold Primary
Arsenic Secondary
Bismuth Secondary
Molybdenum Secondary
Lead Secondary
Antimony Secondary
Zinc Secondary

Materials information

Materials Type of material
Arsenopyrite Ore
Galena Ore
Jamesonite Ore
Pyrargyrite Ore
Pyrite Ore
Sphalerite Ore
Stibnite Ore
Silver Ore
Dolomite Gangue
Epidote Gangue
Quartz Gangue
Sericite Gangue
Tourmaline Gangue


  • (Local) Silicification and dolomitic, sericitic, and propylitic.

Mineral occurrence model information

Model code 78
USGS model code 20c
Deposit model name Porphyry Cu-Au
Mark3 model number 34

Nearby scientific data

(1) -155.69291, 62.70945

Comments on the geologic information

  • Geologic Description = Vinasale Mountain is underlain by a composite intrusive complex of Late Cretaceous age (Bundtzen, 1986; DiMarchi, 1993). The intrusive suite includes peraluminous, porphyritic quartz monzonite, rhyolite porphyry, shonkinite, and monzonite breccia. The intrusive phases cut and thermally alter clastic rocks of the early Late Cretaceous, Kuskokwim Group flysch (Bundtzen and Miller, 1997). The stock has yielded a K-Ar age of 69 Ma (Solie and others, 1991). Much of the following is based on work summarized by DiMarchi (1993) and Bundtzen and Miller (1997). . During industry exploration work conducted from 1989 to 1991, (DiMarchi, 1993), large areas of coincident multi-element (Au, As, Sb, Pb, Mo) soil anomalies were found in three distinct zones named the Central, Northeast, and South zones surrounding the summit of Vinasale Mountain. The Central zone is approximately 457m by 610 m in area and contains maximum values in soil of 2,470 ppb Au. The Northeast and South Zones were similar in total area but contained weaker maximum soil anomalies of 185 ppb Au and 335 ppb Au respectively. The soil anomalies led to the subsurface exploration work that discovered significant Au-polymetallic mineralization. Silicification occurs in veins, segregations and silica flooded zones, and is frequently accompanied by sulfides. Sericite alteration in the Central Zone is characterized by progressive replacement of biotite and plagioclase by sericite and dolomite, and of K-feldspar by sericite, quartz, and dolomite. Propylitic alteration forms a broad halo around zones containing silica and sericite alteration, and is characterized by replacement of biotite by chlorite, and plagioclase by epidote, chlorite, and calcite. . Sulfide mineralization in the Central Zone consists of disseminated pyrite and arsenopyrite in areas of silica flooding in quartz monzonite, sericitic alteration in monzonite breccias, and quartz-dolomite veins and segregations in all intrusive lithologies. Subordinate veinlets and veins host coarse-grained pyrite, galena, arsenopyrite, sphalerite, stibnite, and jamesonite, and microscopic native silver and very minor gold. Practically all of the gold values appear to be concentrated in lattice structures of arsenopyrite, pyrite, and other sulfide minerals. The Northeast and South Zones contain similar but weaker manifestations of Au-polymetallic mineralization than that displayed in the Central Zone. The two longest drill intercepts from the Central Zone contain 63.1 m of 2.42 grams/tonne gold and 71.9 m containing 2.27 grams/tonne gold. The Central Zone is enriched in antimony (average=338 ppm), zinc (average=108 ppm), lead (average=75 ppm), bismuth (3 ppm), and silver (average=0.7 ppm). The gold/silver ratio averages about 2:1 in mineralized samples. Arsenic is most concentrated in the southern Central Zone where it averages 0.80 percent. High barium (average=500 ppm) occurs in the Northeast Zone. . Based on 11,260 m of diamond drilling, the Vinasale Deposit is estimated to contain 10.3 million tonnes grading 2.40 g/tonne gold or about 24,540 kg (789,000 ounces) gold (Bundtzen and Miller, 1997).
  • Age = 68.0 Ma from sericite and 69.0 Ma from apatite, both from Central Zone mineralization.

Economic information

Economic information about the deposit and operations

Development status Prospect

Comments on exploration

  • Status = Inactive

Mining district

District name McGrath

Comments on the reserve resource information

  • Reserves = Drill-indicated gold resources are 24,540 kg (789,000 ounces); an additional 6,562 kg (211,000 ounces) gold in an inferred resource category. Byproduct metal content (Ag, Bi) has not been determined.

Comments on the workings information

  • Workings / Exploration = Bundtzen (1986) first described the mineralized Vinasale pluton and associated gold-scheelite-bismuth vein mineralization on the south flank of Vinasale Mountain, and suggested that the lode mineralization was the source of placer gold mined in Alder Gulch. During 1990, Placer Dome U.S. Inc. and operator Central Alaska Gold Mining Company discovered significant gold anomalies in soils in the Central, Northeast, and South Zones, and initiated a diamond drill program, concentrating on the Central Zone (DiMarchi, 1993). By the end of 1991, a 5,182 m diamond drill program indicated that 11,566,000 tonnes of ore contained about 31,100 kg (1 million ounces) gold (Bundtzen and others, 1992). With additional work completed in 1992 and 1993, a revised resource estimate for the Vinasale deposit, based on a total of 11,260 m of subsurface drilling, is 10.3 million tonnes grading 2.4 g/tonne gold for a total in-place reserve of 24,540 kg (789,000 ounces) gold (J. DiMarchi, written communication, 1994; Bundtzen and Miller, 1997). An additional 6,562 kg (211,000 ounces) gold is regarded as an in-place resource.

Reference information

Links to other databases

Agency Database name Acronym Record ID Notes
USGS Alaska Resource Data File ARDF MG009

Bibliographic references

  • Deposit

    Solie, D.N., Bundtzen, T.K., and Gilbert, W.G., 1991, K-Ar ages of igneous rocks in the McGrath quadrangle, Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Public Data File Report 160, 17 pages, one sheet, 1:250,000 scale.

  • Deposit

    DiMarchi, J.J., 1993, Geology, alteration, and mineralization of the Vinasale Mountain gold deposit, west-central Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Professional Report 113, p. 17-29.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T.K., and Miller, M.L., 1997, Precious metals associated with Late Cretaceous-early Tertiary igneous rocks of southwestern Alaska, in Goldfarb, R.J., and Miller, L.D., eds., Economic Geology Monograph #9, Mineral Deposits of Alaska, p. 242-286.

  • Deposit

    McCoy, Dan, Newberry, R.J., Layer, Paul, DiMarchi, J.J., Bakke, Arne, Masterman, J.S., and Minehane, D.L., 1997, Plutonic-related gold deposits of interior Alaska, in R.J. Goldfarb, and L.D. Miller, eds., Mineral Deposits of Alaska: Economic Geology Monograph 9, p. 191-241.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T.K., Swainbank, R.C., Wood, J.E., Clough, A.H., 1991 (1992), Alaska's Mineral Industry 1991: Alaska Division of Geological & Geophysical Surveys, Special Report 46, 89 p.

  • Deposit

    Bundtzen, T.K., 1986, Prospect examination of a gold-tungsten placer deposit in Alder Creek, Vinasale Mountain area, western Alaska: Alaska Division of Geological and Geophysical Surveys Public Data File Report 86-15, 10 pages.

Comments on the references

  • Primary Reference = DiMarchi, 1993

General comments

Subject category Comment text
Deposit Model Name = Porphyry gold-polymetallic stockwork (Cox and Singer, 1986; model 20c).
Deposit Other Comments = Classified as a peraluminous granite porphyry-hosted gold-polymetallic deposit, an important deposit type in the Kuskokwim Mineral Belt (Bundtzen and Miller, 1997).

Reporter information

Type Date Name Affiliation Comment
Reporter 06-NOV-98 T.K. Bundtzen Pacific Rim Geological Consulting