An Evaluation of the Strata-Bound Base Metal Potential of the Middle and Upper Purcell Supergroup, Southeast British Columbia

Key Researcher(s):  R. Hartlaub

Project ID:  2007-019

Key Research Organization(s):  British Columbia Institute of Technology

Project Location:  Kootenay

Focus Area:  Minerals


The Middle Proterozoic Belt-Purcell Basin hosts the Purcell Supergroup in southeast British Columbia. The basin is believed to represent an intracontinental rift system that has been filled by both marine and fluviatile sediments. The Sullivan Mine, one of the world's largest SEDEX Pb-Zn deposits, is hosted in the Aldridge Formation of the lower Purcell Supergroup. Overlying rocks of the middle and upper Purcell Supergroup have received much less attention in B.C., even though they host several important sediment-hosted copper deposits in Montana (Spar Lake [Troy], Rock Creek, and Montanore).

Project Area

The middle Purcell Supergroup includes clastic sediments of the Creston Formation and carbonates of the Kitchener Formation. It is the middle Creston Formation, termed the Revett in Montana, that hosts the known copper deposits. The upper Purcell Supergroup consists of shallow water clastic rocks of the Van Creek, Gateway, Phillips, and Roosvile Formations. A horizon of flood basalts and volcaniclastic rocks is termed the Nicol Creek Formation. The goal of this study is to better characterize the strata-bound base metal potential of the Middle and Upper Purcell Supergroup in British Columbia. This research will focus on three main components:

  1. Detailed mapping of the geology, alteration patterns, and mineral occurrences of the economically important middle Creston Formation (Revett Formation in Montana).
  2. Examination of the petrology, geochemistry and economic potential of volcanic rocks of the Nicol Creek Formation.
  3. Geochemical and isotopic characterization of mafic dykes and felsic plutonic rocks in order to constrain their relationships with alteration zones and strata-bound mineralization.