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BC Geological Survey

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Upcoming Events

BC Geological Survey at AME Roundup 2020

Speakers at New Geoscience SessionMonday January 20 (1:15 pm to 4:00 pm)

1:20 pm – Bram van Straaten “Northwestern British Columbia’s “Golden Triangle”: Recurrent syn- to post-subduction mineralization along deep crustal corridors - Part 1"

1:40 pm – JoAnne Nelson “Northwestern British Columbia’s “Golden Triangle”: Recurrent syn- to post-subduction mineralization along deep crustal corridors - Part 2"

2:00 pm – Luke Ootes “Revisiting Paleogene tectonics and mineralization in the Cordilleran Orogen"


Poster Session - Monday January 20 (9:00 am to 6:00 pm) - Authors at posters from 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm

A selection of posters highlighting projects and current fieldwork from 2019.

Luke Ootes, Yao Cui, Graham Nixon, George Simandl, Alexei Rukhlov, Rebecca Hunter, Dejan Milidragovic, Mitch Mihalynuk, Paul Schiarizza, and Jessica Norris/Pierre Landry from the BC Geological Survey will be presenting posters during this session. 


Additions to the Geoscience Toolbox Session - Tuesday January 21 (1:15 am to 3:45 pm)

1:30 pm – Graham Nixon “Geological Setting of Neogene Porphyry Cu±Mo±Au±Ag Mineralization, Northern Vancouver Island"

1:45 pm – Alexei Rukhlov “Northern Vancouver Island Multi-Media Drainage Geochemical and Pb Isotopic Survey"

2:00 pm – Travis Ferbey (on behalf of Alain Plouffe) “Finding Deeper Porphyry Cu Deposits in the Canadian Cordillera using Epidote Chemistry”

2:45 pm – Travis Ferbey “Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems: The Newest Addition to a Field Geologist's Toolbox”

3:30 pm – Gabe Fortin “Assessment Report Databases and Digital Data Submissions”

 


Exhibit Hall booth - Monday January 20 through Thursday January 23

Find the BC Geological Survey, Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources at booths 617/619/621/716/718/720. West of the Core Shack.


Regional Geologists at Roundup 2020

Regional Overviews: BC / Yukon / Alaska - Monday January 20

10:25 am – Gordon Clarke “BC Regional Overview”

Poster Session Monday January 20 (9:00 am to 6:00 pm) - Authors at posters from 4:00-6:00 pm

Regional geologists Bruce Northcote and Sean Tombe will be presenting posters during this session.


For more information about AME Roundup 2020:


Cordilleran Geoscience: A 2020 perspective

Cordilleran Geoscience: A 2020 perspective is a workshop devoted to the latest research about the geology, geophysics, metallogeny, and mineral deposits of the Cordillera. It will be held on March 24-25, 2020 at the University of British Columbia Robson Square campus in downtown Vancouver.The event features two days of oral and poster presentations by geoscientists from the Geological Survey of Canada, the British Columbia Geological Survey, the Yukon Geological Survey, universities, and industry. The registration fee is $25 ($10 for students) and will include a reception.The event is being organized and sponsored by the Pacific Section of the Geological Association of Canada, the Geological Survey of Canada, the British Columbia Geological Survey, and the Yukon Geological Survey.  See more


New annual publications

Provincial overview of exploration and mining in British Columbia, 2019Fieldwork 2019    

British Columbia Coal industry overview, 2019Operating mines and selected exploration projects in British Columbia, 2019

New releases

Open File 2020-02:     Bedrock geology of northern Hogem batholith and its surroundings, north-central British Columbia

Open File 2020-03:     Ice-flow indicator database, British Columbia and Yukon

GeoFile 2020-02:    Update of rock geochemical database at the British Columbia Geological Survey

L. Ootes, A.L. Bergen, D. Milidragovic, and G.O. Jones

New bedrock mapping refines the distribution and relationships of plutonic rocks in northern Hogem batholith and surrounding rocks in the Quesnel, Stikine, and Cache Creek terranes. Seven new occurrences discovered in 2019; five of these close to previously recognized mineralization. When combined with results of 2018 mapping, 24 new mineral occurrences have been documented in the study area. Porphyry Cu ±Mo, Au in Hogem batholith is the predominant type followed by quartz-carbonate vein-hosted base and precious metals in Quesnel and Stikine terranes, and volcanic/sediment-hosted Cu in the Telkwa Formation of the Stikine terrane.

H. Arnold and T. Ferbey

Building on ice-flow indicator compilation for British Columbia and Yukon by Arnold et al. (2016), this database illustrates major ice-flow directions for the Canadian sector of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet during the Late Pleistocene. A total of 506 ice-flow features in British Columbia have been added to the compilation from 25 bedrock geology maps. The data were derived from published and unpublished surficial geology, terrain, bedrock geology, and glacial feature maps; there are now 152,980 measurements in the database.

T. Han and A.S. Rukhlov

At the beginning of 2016, a new BCGS rock geochemical database was developed and populated with data compiled from 214 BCGS releases published between 1986 and 2015. It included about 11,000 samples with 250,000 determinations analyzed by 26 analytical methods in 21 laboratories. Since the original release, we have been updating the database, which is now augmented with new rock geochemical data compiled from BCGS publications between 2016 and 2019. The new data include 721 samples from 16 locations with ca. 45,000 determinations analyzed by 10 analytical methods in five laboratories.

Information Circular 2020-06:     The Golden Triangle of northwestern British Columbia

Open File 2019-03:     British Columbia surficial geology map index - Updated January 2020

Open File 2019-04:     Regional- to property-scale till geochemical and mineralogical surveys in British Columbia for base and precious metals - Updated January 2020

British Columbia Geological Survey

The Golden Triangle is the popular name for a loosely defined area of northwestern British Columbia that includes significant gold, silver, and copper deposits. Most deposits are in west-central Stikinia, a long-lived oceanic arc terrane that extends for about 1000 km along the length of the Canadian Cordillera. These deposits developed during terrane accretion and post-accretion deformation and magmatism, and most are related to the Hazelton Group and affiliated intrusions. 

H. Arnold and T. Ferbey

The surficial geology map index contains maps that have been produced by the British Columbia Geological Survey, the Geological Survey of Canada, and Geoscience BC. To be included in this index, maps have to be available for download. Each map is represented by the actual map extent or footprint rather than a bounding box or NTS sheet that it falls within.

T. Ferbey, A.L. Bustard, and H. Arnold

This till geochemistry survey indexes geographically referenced, regional- and property-scale till geochemical and mineralogical surveys that use subglacial tills to target base and precious metals in British Columbia. Regional-scale surveys are listed by NTS mapsheet; property-scale reports by presumed deposit type. Also included are lists of topical studies relevant to drift prospecting. 

Peer-reviewed journals, volume publications and contributions to partner publications

Akam, C., Simandl, G.J., Let, R., Paradis, P., Hoshino, M., Kon,Y., Araoka, D., Green, C., Kodama, S., Takagi, T., and Chaudhry, M., 2019. Comparison of methods for the geochemical determination of rare earth elements: Rock Canyon Creek REE–F–Ba deposit case study, SE British Columbia, Canada. Geochemistry: Exploration, Environment, Analysis 19, 414-430.

Febbo, G.E., Kennedy, L.A., Nelson, J.L., Savell, M.J., Campbell, M.E., Creaser, R.A., Friedman, R.M., van Straaten, B.I., and Stein, H.J., 2019. The evolution and structural modification of the supergiant Mitchell Au-Cu porphyry, northwestern British Columbia. Economic Geology 114, 303-324.

Hickin, A.S., Best, M.E., and Levson, V.M., 2019. Electromagnetic resistivity anisotropy in till from the Kiskatinaw streamlined landform field, northeastern British Columbia, Canada. Geomorphology, 335, 14-27.

Ootes, L., Sandeman, H., Cousens, B.L., Luo, Y., Pearson, D.G., and Jackson, V.A., 2019. Pyroxenitic magma conduits (ca.1.86 Ga) in Wopmay orogen and Slave craton: Petrogenetic constraints from whole rock and mineral chemistry.Lithos, in press.

Sheen, A., Heaman, L.M., Kjarsgaard, B., Ootes, L., Pearson, D.G., and Creaser, R.A., 2019. Athapuscow aulacogen revisited: geochronology and geochemistry of the 2046 Ma Union Island Group mafic magmatism, East Arm of Great Slave Lake, Northwest Territories, Canada. Precambrian Research, 321, 85-102.

Toma J., Holmden C., Shakotko, L., Pan Y., and Ootes L., 2019. Cr isotopic insights into oxidative weathering of the continents at 1.9 Ga utilizing the Beaverlodge Lake paleosol, Northwest Territories, Canada. Geobiology, 17, 467-489.

Miller, E.A., Kennedy, L., and van Straaten, B.I., 2019. Preliminary field results from Kinskuch Lake, northwestern British Columbia (NTS 103P/11): a study of the boundary between the Stuhini and Hazelton groups. In Geoscience BC Summary of Activities 2018: Minerals and Mining, Geoscience BC, Report 2019-1, pp. 75–86.

Nixon, G.T., Milidragovic, D., and Scoates, J.S., 2019. Convergent margin Ni-Cu-PGE-Cr ore systems: temporal and magmatic evolution. In: Targeted Geoscience Initiative 5, Grant Program Interim Reports 2018-2019. Geological Survey of Canada, pp. 49-61.

Ootes, L., Castonguay, S., Friedman, R., and Devine, F., 2019. Superimposed auriferous structural events along the Llewellyn-Tally Ho deformation corridor in southern Yukon and northwest British Columbia. In: Rogers, N. (Ed), Targeted Geoscience Initiative: 2018 Report of Activities Geological Survey of Canada Open File 8549, pp. 49-58.

Paradis, S. and Simandl, G.J., 2019. Preliminary carbon and oxygen isotope analyses of hydrothermal carbonates from Mississippi Valley-type and REE-F-Ba deposits of the southern Canadian Rocky Mountains – a comparison. In: Rogers, N. (Ed.) Targeted Geoscience Initiative: 2018 Report of Activities, Geological Survey of Canada Open File 8549, pp. 205–216.

Plouffe, A., Kjarsgaard, I.M., Kobylinski, C. H., Hattori, K., Petts, D. C., Venance, K. E., and Ferbey, T., 2019. Discovering the next generation of copper porphyry deposits using mineral markers. In: Rogers, N. (Ed.) Targeted Geoscience Initiative: 2018 Report of Activities, Geological Survey of Canada Open File 8549, pp. 321-331.

All BC Geological Survey publications released in 2019

 

2019-01:     Geological Fieldwork 2018​

Cover image of Fieldwork 2018

Ferri, F., Jones, L.D., and Clarke, G., 2019. British Columbia Geological Survey annual program review 2018-2019. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp.1-14. (PDF)

Schiarizza, P., 2019. Geology of the Nicola Group in the Bridge Lake-Quesnel River area, south-central British Columbia. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 15-30. (PDF)

Ootes, L., Bergen, A., Milidragovic, D., Graham, B., Simmonds, R., 2019. Preliminary geology of northern Hogem batholith, Quesnel terrane, north-central British Columbia. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 31-53. (PDF)

Milidragovic, D., and Grundy, R., 2019. Geochemistry and petrology of rocks in the Decar area, central British Columbia: Petrologically constrained subdivision of the Cache Creek complex. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 55-77. (PDF)

van Straaten, B.I., and Wearmouth, C., 2019. Geology of the Latham and Pallen Creek area, northwestern British Columbia: Distinguishing the Tsaybahe group, Stuhini Group, and Hazelton Group, and the onset of Triassic arc volcanism in northern Stikinia. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 79-96. (PDF)

Mihalynuk, M.G., Zagorevski, A., Logan, J.M., Friedman, R.M., and Johnston, S.T., 2019. Age constraints for rocks hosting massive sulphide mineralization at Rock and Roll and Granduc deposits between Iskut and Stewart, British Columbia. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 97-111. (PDF)

Simandl, G.J., Petrus, J.A., Matthew I. Leybourne, M.I., Suzanne Paradis, S., and Akam, C., 2019.  Characterization of primary fersmite from the Mount Brussilof magnesite deposit, southeastern British Columbia, Canada.  In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 113-123. (PDF)

Han, T., Rukhlov, A.S., Riddell, J.M., and Ferbey, T., 2019. A skeleton data model for geochemical databases at the British Columbia Geological Survey. In: Geological Fieldwork 2018, British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey Paper 2019-01, pp. 125-135. (PDF)

Appendix: British Columbia Geological Survey publications and peer-reviewed journal papers authored by BCGS staff and released in 2018, pp 137-140. (PDF)

View Paper 2019-01 (PDF, 170 MB)

2019-01:     Mines, mine development, selected proposed mines, and selected exploration projects in British Columbia, 2018

Image of Open File 2019-01

G. Clarke, B. Northcote, F. Katay, and J. DeGrace​​

This Provincial map shows the location of selected major exploration projects, selected proposed mines, and producing metal, coal, and industrial mineral mines in 2018.

View Open File 2019-01 (PDF, 10 MB)

Download Open File 2019-01 (ZIP, 8 KB)


2019-02:     Preliminary geology of Notch Peak and Ogden Creek (parts of NTS 094C/04 and093N/13), northern Hogem batholith, Quesnel terrane, north-central British Columbia

Image of Open File 2019-02

L. Ootes, A.L. Bergen, D. Milidragovic, and B. Graham

New bedrock mapping in parts of NTS 94C/04 (Notch Peak) and 93N/13 (Ogden Creek) refines the distribution and relationships of plutonic rocks in northern Hogem batholith. The eastern part of the study area is mostly underlain by diorite and lesser hornblendite of the Thane Creek suite. The southern part of the study area is underlain by Duckling Creek suite syenite and monzonite, with enclaves of pyroxenite (ca. 180 Ma). The western part of the study area is underlain by foliated granites assigned to the Mesilinka suite (Jurassic to Cretaceous?). In the central part of the study area, the Osilinka suite granite is characterized by its low content of mafic minerals (≤ 5%). Previously documented metallic mineralization is recorded in ca. 34 MINFILE occurrences. During bedrock mapping, 17 new mineral occurrences were discovered.
For more detailed unit description see Ootes et al., BCGS Paper 2019-01, pp. 31-53.

View Open File 2019-02 (PDF, 6.2 MB)


2019-03:     British Columbia surficial geology map index

Image of Open File 2019-03

H. Arnold, and T. Ferbey

Presented here is a surficial geology map index for British Columbia. These maps have been produced by the British Columbia Geological Survey, the Geological Survey of Canada (GSC), and Geoscience BC. To be included in this index maps have to be available for digital download. Each map is represented by the actual map extent or footprint rather than a bounding box or NTS sheet that it falls within. This provides an accurate representation of the areal extent of surficial geology mapping for British Columbia.
The index is presented by map scale. In the digital versions of this index advanced searches can also be conducted on fields such as source author, source type (data available in digital or PDF form), or source series (Preliminary maps to A Series or Geoscience maps) to name a few. Publication page URLs are supplied for each map where the source files, PDFs or digital data can be downloaded. Also included is supplemental information which, when applicable, states where data are originally from and/or have elsewhere been used. Instances of this would be when an author published a map which was then revised and published as a GSC A Series map or when a map was used in a subsequent compilation. When this has occurred not only are the publication numbers provided for these other maps but links to their publication pages as well. This enables users to see all sources of the same data. In some cases original mapping is only available as a PDF but a subsequent map or compilation has made it available as an attributed vector file (e.g., shapefile).

View Open File 2019-03 (PDF, 3 MB)

Download Open File 2019-03 (ZIP, 353 MB)


2019-04:     Regional- to property-scale till geochemical and mineralogical surveys in British Columbia for base and precious metals

Image of Open File 2019-04

T. Ferbey, A.L. Bustard, and H. Arnold

This map indexes geographically referenced, regional- and property-scale till geochemical and mineralogical surveys that use subglacial tills to target base and precious metals in British Columbia. Regional-scale surveys are listed by NTS; property-scale reports by presumed deposit type. Also included are lists of topical studies relevant to drift prospecting in the province and elsewhere.

The index is presented area in square kilometres. In the digital versions of this index advanced searches can also be conducted on fields such as source author, source type (data available in digital or PDF form), or source series to name a few. Publication page URLs are supplied for each survey where the source files, PDFs or digital data can be downloaded. Also included is supplemental information which, when applicable, states where data are originally from and/or have elsewhere been used. When this has occurred not only is the publication information provided for the other surveys but links to their publication pages as well. This enables users to see all sources of the same data.

Reports and data can be viewed and downloaded from the following websites.
British Columbia Geological Survey Publication Catalogue
British Columbia Geological Survey Assessment Report Indexing System (ARIS)
Geological Survey of Canada

View Open File 2019-04 (PDF, 2 MB)

Download Open File 2019-04 (ZIP, 2 MB)


2019-05:     Preliminary bedrock geology of the Latham and Pallen Creek area​

Image of Open File 2019-05

B. I. van Straaten and C. D. Wearmouth

The Latham and Pallen creek area, including parts of NTS sheets 104I/04, 05, 104J/01 and 08, is southwest of the community of Dease Lake in northwestern British Columbia. The oldest units in the map area are penetratively deformed meta-sedimentary and volcanic rocks and limestones of the Stikine assemblage (upper Paleozoic). These rocks are overlain (likely unconformably) by a volcano-sedimentary sequence informally referred to as the Tsaybahe group (Lower-Middle Triassic), which is succeeded by the Stuhini Group (Upper Triassic). We subdivide the Tsaybahe group into a sedimentary unit of fine-grained siliciclastic rocks and minor chert, and a volcanic unit of monomictic tuff breccia with plagioclase-augite-phyric volcanic clasts. Tsaybahe volcanic rocks appear texturally similar to the overlying Stuhini Group, but are separated based on their stratigraphic position atop of the Stikine assemblage, rare Early to Middle Triassic biostratigraphic ages, low magnetic susceptibility, and low response on regional aeromagnetic surveys. Stuhini Group volcanic rocks include massive monomictic tuff breccia and lapilli-tuff with augite-plagioclase-phyric volcanic clasts, have a high magnetic susceptibility, and display a high and variable response on regional aeromagnetic surveys. Triassic and older stratified rocks are cut by Late Triassic stocks and plutons ranging from ultramafic to gabbro, hornblende-rich quartz diorite and hornblende quartz monzonite in composition. Triassic units generally lack penetrative tectonic fabrics and are deformed into map-scale open folds. An outlier of volcano-sedimentary rocks assigned to the upper part of the Hazelton Group is inferred to unconformably overlie the Triassic rocks. The succession (~500 m thick) includes two sedimentary units that are overlain by a maroon volcanic unit, which is capped by a felsic volcanic unit. Based on lithological and stratigraphic criteria, the sedimentary units are assigned to the Spatsizi Formation and the volcanic units to the Horn Mountain Formation. Three Middle Jurassic plutons are exposed in the area, ranging in composition from biotite-hornblende quartz diorite to biotite monzogranite. Developed within or adjacent to these plutons are zones of alteration and mineralization containing locally elevated copper, gold, silver and/or molybdenum in fractures, veins, skarns, and gossans.

Augite-phyric mafic volcanic units in each of the Tsaybahe group, Stuhini Group, and Horn Mountain Formation, although temporally distinct, are texturally similar. Compared to widespread exposures of mafic volcanic rocks of the Stuhini Group in northern Stikinia, occurrences of the Tsaybahe group and its correlatives are rare. However, owing to a lack of age constraints, we consider that Tsaybahe group exposures may have been included in the Stuhini Group and suggest that the unit is more extensive than currently recognized. The Tsaybahe group may represent nascent Middle Triassic arc volcanism before widespread Upper Triassic Stuhini arc activity.

The Open File release includes a digital GIS compilation for an approximately 3,900 km2 area southwest, south, southeast and east of Dease Lake covered by van Straaten et al. (2012), van Straaten et al. (2017), van Straaten and Bichlmaier (2018) and this study.

View Open File 2019-05 (PDF, 10.2 MB)

Download Open File 2019-05 (ZIP, 9.7 KB)


2019-06:     Geology of the Cache Creek terrane north of Trembleur Lake, parts of NTS 93K/14

Image of Open File 2019-06

D. Milidragovic

New bedrock mapping in the southern segment of the Cache Creek terrane (part of NTS 93K/14 - Trembleur Lake) refines the distribution and geodynamic setting of the tectonically emplaced, variably serpentinized and carbonate-altered lithospheric mantle , and the surrounding Upper Pennsylvanian to Lower Jurassic, greenschist to amphibolite-facies volcanic, shallow-intrusive, and siliciclastic rocks. 

View Open File 2019-06 (PDF, 7 MB)


2019-07:     Bedrock geology, Search Phase I project area, western Skeena arch, west-central British Columbia

Image of Open File 2019-07

J.J. Angen, M. Rahimi, J.L. Nelson and C.J.R. Hart

Also published as Geoscience BC Map 2019-03-01 and MDRU Map 17-2018

This map presents the results of new mapping carried out during the summer of 2016, a compilation of previous mapping, and interpretations based on new aeromagnetic data. The map is accompanied by spatial data including administrative, cultural and natural features, vector and raster topographic information, historical and modern mineral exploration information, and regional historical geochronology and structural measurements derived from government sources and published literature. The MINFILE data contain records modified from the BC MINFILE database and newly identified occurrences. The map also provides new geochemical and geochronologic results and structural and physical properties measurements. The complete database is available through Geoscience BC.

View Open File 2019-07 (PDF, 5.5 MB)


2019-08:     Aeromagnetic correlation with bedrock geology, Search phase 1 project area, western Skeena arch, west-central British Columbia

Image of Open File 2019-08

J.J. Angen, M. Rahimi, J.L. Nelson and C.J.R. Hart

Also published as Geoscience BC Map 2019-03-02 and MDRU Map 18-2018

Complementing British Columbia Geological Survey Open File 2019-07 (Bedrock geology, Search Phase 1 project area, western Skeena arch, west-central British Columbia, by Angen, Rahimi, Nelson, and Hart), Open File 2019-08 integrates bedrock mapping with a recent aeromagnetic conducted by Precision Geosurveys Inc.  (Geoscience BC, Report 2016-02).

View Open File 2019-08 (PDF, 4.5 MB)


2019-10:     Indicator mineral content of bedrock and till at the Gibraltar porphyry Cu-Mo deposit and the Woodjam porphyry Cu-Au-Mo prospect, south-central British Columbia​​​​​​

Cover image of BCGS Open File 2019-10

A. Plouffe and T. Ferbey

Also published as Geological Survey of Canada Open File 8580 

The next generation of porphyry Cu deposits to be discovered in the Canadian Cordillera are likely to be found underlying glacial sediments. The recovery of minerals diagnostic of porphyry Cu mineralization, termed porphyry Cu indicator minerals (PCIM), in till and stream sediments will contribute to the discovery of buried mineralization. To identify minerals that have the potential to be utilized as PCIM, thirteen bedrock samples from the Gibraltar porphyry Cu-Mo deposit and ten from the Woodjam porphyry Cu-Au-Mo prospect were examined after production of mid-density (2.8-3.2 SG) and heavy (>3.2 SG) mineral concentrates. Chalcopyrite, a common Cu ore mineral, is abundant in bedrock and till in the Gibraltar and Woodjam areas making it a key PCIM. Jarosite, common in leached cap and supergene zones of porphyry Cu deposits, is generally more abundant in till near the known mineralized zones compared to surrounding regions and therefore, should be considered a PCIM diagnostic of the oxidized portion of porphyry mineralization. Other Cu (azurite, malachite, covellite, chalcocite) and Mo (molybdenite) minerals are present in mineralized bedrock but are rare or absent in till, limiting their utility as PCIM at these two study sites, but they could be important PCIM where found in detrital sediments. Other minerals (e.g. tourmaline, apatite and rutile) present in till and bedrock need to be characterized geochemically in order to be classified and used as PCIM.

View Open File 2019-10 (PDF, 5 MB)

Download Open File 2019-10 (ZIP, 35 MB)

2019-01:   Laser Ablation ICP-MS Geochronologic data from Granduc and Rock and Roll deposits, northwest British Columbia

GeoFile 2019-01 cover page

M. G. Mihalynuk, R. M. Friedman and J. M. Logan

U-Pb geochronological results reported by Mihalynuk et al. (2019, Geologcial Fieldwork 2018) for host rocks of the Rock and Roll and Granduc volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) deposits in the Iskut area of northwestern British Columbia are consistent with the Late Triassic age suggested by previous workers. Although a direct age determination is still lacking, they constrained mineralization to between ~222 Ma and <~208 Ma for Granduc and 292 Ma to 186 Ma for Rock and Roll. The Late Triassic age may mark an important VMS mineralizing event within the submarine Stuhini arc, with implications for regional mineral exploration. Data from their study also provides constraints on two phases of superimposed deformation to between 210 Ma and 183 Ma. This Geofile 2019-01 contains the full geochronologic data set for detrital zircon samples reported in summary fashion by Mihalynuk et al. (2019).

View GeoFile 2​019-01 (PDF, 5.8 MB)

Download GeoFile 2019-01 (ZIP, 6.2 MB)


2019-02:   Iskut region geological compilation: Supporting data and working files

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-02

J.L. Nelson

This geofile contains files of supporting data and references used in the 2018 geological compilation of the Iskut region between the village of Iskut and Summit Lake, which is incorporated in the revised digital geological map of British Columbia (Cui et al. 2019). It includes:1) working GIS (.shp) files of geological linework, polygons and centroids, with notes and references; 2) working files of geochronological and biochronological supporting data from published sources with edits and notes by the compiler 3) reference list of sources for geology; and 4) a copy of the paper that justifies Iskut stratigraphic nomenclature (Nelson et al. 2018).

View GeoFile 2​019-02 (PDF, 4 MB)

Download GeoFile 2019-02 (ZIP, 45 MB)


2019-03:   U-Pb Geochronology of the Mitchell Deposit, Northwest BC

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-03

G. E. Febbo, R. M. Friedman, L. A. Kennedy and J.L. Nelson

Cross-cutting relationships separate three phases of plutonism at the Mitchell calc-alkalic porphyry Au-Cu-Ag-Mo deposit in Stikine terrane of northwestern British Columbia. A sample of porphyritic hornblende diorite from Phase 1 yielded a U-Pb zircon age of 196 ± 2.9 Ma. A second porphyritic hornblende diorite sample from Phase 1 yielded a U-Pb zircon age of 189.9 ± 2.8 Ma. A sample of hornblende diorite from Phase 2 yielded a U-Pb zircon age of 192.2 ± 2.8 Ma, which is within error of the younger Phase 1 determination.

View GeoFile 2019-03 (PDF, 4.4 MB)


2019-04:   Assessment report-sourced surface sediment geochemical database: Development and initial data release from the Interior Plateau

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-04

J. Norris and G. Fortin

ARIS (Assessment Report Index System) is collection of about 36,700 reports that detail results from mineral exploration and development programs. Submitted by the exploration and mining industry to comply with Mineral Tenure Act Regulations and maintain titles in good standing, the reports become an open resource after a one-year confidentiality period. Although containing a wealth of information, the assessment reports are typically submitted in a form (e.g., paper or PDF file) that make working with the data cumbersome. To address this problem, we are developing databases that contain information extracted and digitized from assessment reports, and releasing data in formats that are amenable to evaluation using geospatial and analytical software. This first such database contains surface sediment geochemical data (e.g. soil, silt, stream sediment, and till) from the Interior Plateau, and includes location coordinates, sampling parameters and notes, laboratory information, sample preparation methods, and analytical methods. We use a streamlined process for data compilation, verification, product generation, and distribution. Containing information from about 120 assessment reports, the database includes results from more than 34,000 samples, with 1,446,000 determinations from 13 laboratories. The data released herein (BCGS_GF2019-04.zip) are provided as a GeoPackage, which can be imported directly into most GIS, and as a set of CSV files. Updates to the current surface sediment geochemical database will contain additional geochemical data. Future assessment report-sourced databases will include information from drill holes and geophysical surveys. 

View GeoFile 2​019-04 (PDF, 4.5 MB)

Download GeoFile 2019-04 (ZIP, 59 MB)


2019-05:   Potential recovery of Ca, K, Mg, Br, I, B, and Li form produced water at oil and gas fields, British Columbia

Image of GeoFile 2019-05

G.J. Simandl, C. Akam, M. Yakimoski, D. Richardson, A. Teucher, Y. Cui, S. Paradis, S. McPhail, and F. Ferri

Produced waters are a co-product of hydrocarbon extraction from conventional and unconventional fields. Treatment and disposal of these waters present a significant cost to the oil and gas industry. However, produced waters may contain non-negligible concentrations of Cl, Na, Ca, K, Sr, Mg, Br, Ba, Fe, I, B, Mn, Li, and other potentially recoverable elements.
Most elements discussed in this study are considered specialty metals (e.g., Li and Mg), industrial minerals (e.g., B, Br, and I), or starting materials for ‘synthetic’ industrial minerals (e.g., precipitated calcium carbonate). Lithium exploration and development projects worldwide currently benefit from a bullish outlook for the battery-grade portion of the Li market. Virtually every site in the Alberta portion of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin with reported Li concentrations equal to or greater than 50 mg/l is claimed. Only five samples of produced waters analysed for Li in British Columbia are currently in public domain; one of which contains 54 mg/l Li. 
The quality of produced water analyses is commonly questioned due to analytical problems or contamination by mud filtrate, completion fluids, or corrosion inhibitors. Automated data culling may be beneficial for treatment of data as it removes spurious analyses, although it may eliminate valuable data for elements not affected by contaminants.
This study is a first step toward identifying areas with anomalous concentrations of elements in produced waters. More work is needed to confirm our findings and determine which, if any, of the discussed elements can be extracted and marketed to offset the cost of treatment and disposal of produced waters. 

View GeoFile 2​019-05 (PDF, 7 MB)


2019-06:   Primary fersmite and the direct indicator mineral concept, Mount Brussilof, British Columbia

Image of GeoFile 2019-06

G.J. Simandl, J.A. Petrus, M.I. Leybourne, S, Paradis, and C. Akam

Fersmite ([Ca,Ce,Na][Nb,Ta,Ti] [O,OH,F] ), an important Nb ore mineral, occurs commonly as a metamict alteration product of pre-existing niobate minerals in carbonatites, alkaline and peralkaline intrusions, and rare element pegmatites. Well-crystalized fersmite is found in 'alpine clefts' (open joints, vugs, and cavities partially filled with well-crystallized minerals) formed during metamorphism and uplift. 
At the Mount Brussilof (MB) magnesite deposit, 40 km northeast of Invermere, British Columbia, coarse fersmite crystals are in in vugs within sparry dolomite, which cross-cuts sparry magnesite. It occurs as accessory, black, acicular to platy, strongly-zoned crystals up to 2 cm long or as smaller crystals (< 3 mm) commonly fractured and cut by late dolomite. 
The MB fersmite is characterized by strongly-zoned, euhedral crystals growing on the walls of cavities or enclosed in a dolomite matrix. It shares similarities with niobate mineral occurrences reported in ‘alpine clefts’ and it differs texturally from fersmite observed in carbonatite-related Nb mineralization. Zoning in the MB fersmite crystals probably reflects variations in the composition of fluids from which they formed. The higher concentrations of LREE in fersmite from Aley carbonatite relative to the MB fersmite may reflect differences in concentrations of LREE in these fundamentally distinct fersmite-forming systems. Fersmite can be successfully used to complement minerals of the pyrochlore supergroup and minerals of the columbite-tantalite solid solution series as a direct indicator mineral in exploration for carbonatite-, pegmatite-, and alpine cleft-related mineral occurrences. 

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2019-07:   Geochemistry of the Rock Canyon Creek RE-F-Ba deposit, British Columbia

Image of GeoFile 2019-07

G.J. Simandl, Y. Kon, S. Paradis, M. Hoshino, C. Akam, D. Miller, D. Araoka, and S. Kodama

The Rock Canyon Creek carbonate-hosted REE-F-B deposit is 90 km northeast of Cranbrook on the eastern flank of the Canadian Cordillera. It has tectonic, stratigraphic, and structural similarities with Mississippi Valley-type and sparry magnesite deposits in the southeast Rocky Mountains. 
The main REE-fluorite zone is a steeply dipping tabular body or set of lenses extending more than 1100 m along strike, at least 50 m wide, and at least 100 m deep. It coincides with a crackle breccia in carbonate rocks. Fluorite concentrations vary from less than 1% to 13.5% by weight, and REE+Y concentrations vary from trace to 2%. The mineralized zone consists of dolomite, fluorite, barite, pyrite, quartz, K-feldspar, calcite, porous apatite, REE-fluorocarbonates, and REE-phosphates. The main fluorocarbonates are bastnäsite, parisite, and synchysite. Monazite and crandallite group minerals consisting mainly of Al, Ca, Sr, and lesser proportions of La, Ce, Nd, S, and F are the main phosphates. 
Three-dimensional modeling of the deposit suggests possible co-variation between Ba, F, and La, and between La and Nd. Chondrite-normalized REE pattern of fluorite from the mineralized zone shows higher LREE content and differs from that of fluorite associated with prosopite in transported boulders, and from distal fluorite (850 m from the main mineralized zone). Detailed studies of mineral paragenesis and chemical and isotopic compositions of minerals are underway to elucidate the timing of mineralization and the origin of ore-forming fluids.

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2019-08:   Are Cordilleran carbonatite hosts of Ta, Nb and REE from the deep mantle? ​

Image of GeoFile 2018-09

A.S. Rukhlov, L.B. Aspler, and J. Gabites

Important targets for Ta, Nb, and REE exploration, carbonatites and related rocks in the Canadian Cordillera were emplaced at ca. 810-700, 500, and 360-330 Ma, forming part of the British Columbia alkaline province. The most prolific Late Paleozoic carbonatites, including Aley and Upper Fir hosts of Nb-Ta deposits, are unusual. In contrast to the ca. 810-700 and ca. 500 Ma carbonatites, which mark breakup of the supercontinent Rodinia and passive margin development on the western flank of Laurentia, and to most carbonatites globally, which are found in intracratonic regions in association with large igneous provinces, the 360-330 Ma carbonatites formed near the continental margin during subduction taking place immediately to the west. We combine our findings from Blue River carbonatites with the new C-O-Sr-Pb-Nd isotopic analyses of separated carbonates from the ca. 810 Ma Perry River and ca. 360-330 Ma Aley, Ice River, Mount Grace, and Wicheeda Lake carbonatites to investigate their metallogeny. Most carbonatites, including the Ta-Nb deposits of the Blue River area, have primary mantle C-O isotopic signatures, whereas those of REE-rich carbonatites from Wicheeda Lake and Ice River dike, and literature data from Aley suggest carbohydrothermal fluid exchange with the host limestones. The available isotopic data, in conjunction with the geological, paleogeographic, and geophysical evidence, indicate that Cordilleran carbonatites were derived from a long-lived, deep-level mantle plume that was tapped episodically since the Neoproterozoic.

View GeoFile 2​019-08 (PDF, 60 MB)


2019-09:   Toward international geoscience standards and interoperable web services for British Columbia geology and mineral resources

Image of GeoFile 2019-09

Y. Cui, L.J. Diakow, and D. Miller

The British Columbia Geological Survey (BCGS) is implementing the international geoscience standard GeoSciML and its extension EarthResourceML, to deliver geoscience data products and to develop interoperable geospatial web services compliant with these standards. As a first step, the bedrock geology map of the province is available in the Web Map Service (WMS) interface, using vocabularies adopted by the IUGS Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information (CGI). We also have mineral occurrences from our MINFILE database available as WMS, compliant to EarthResourceML Lite, with details converted to the CGI vocabularies. Our next step is to make these data available on OneGeology, the portal for worldwide geoscience data. Our current geology and mineral occurrence data are maintained using BCGS specifications in data collection, compilation, and data production, and will continue to be accessible through MapPlace 2, the Survey's geospatial web service. However, it will take significant effort and time to have our data, specifications, and web services fully compliant with the international geoscience standards. We take this as an opportunity to update our data models and specifications, to produce consistent data with standardized classification systems and terminology, and to eventually enable interoperation in data sharing, data exchange, and data integration.

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2019-10:   Rock-Eval, lithogeochemistry, gamma ray spectrometry, vitrine reflectance, and X-ray diffraction analysis of the Besa River Formation in the Rocky Mountains of northeastern British Columbia

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-10

F. Ferri, and J. Reyes

Middle Devonian to Lower Carboniferous shales and siltstones of the Besa River Formation exposed in the Rocky Mountains are equivalent to shale gas-bearing rocks in the subsurface of the Liard Basin and, farther east, in the Horn River Formation of the Horn River Basin. To better understand these shale gas-bearing horizons, we investigated the Besa River Formation in outcrops near the southwestern margin of Liard Basin. Complementing data and interpretations presented in previous publications, herein we present the full data set from two sections that were measured and systematically sampled in the Stone Mountain area. Included are location maps, graphic logs, lithologic descriptions, images of representative rock types, and data files with results from whole rock and Rock-Eval geochemistry, bulk mineral composition, vitrine reflectance, and gamma ray work. These sections and data sets will provide a reference for shale gas-bearing rocks of the Besa River Formation in the subsurface of southern Liard Basin.

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2019-11:   Rock-Eval, lithogeochemistry, gamma ray spectrometry, thermal maturity, X-ray diffraction analysis, and organic carbon isotope geochemistry of the Besa River Formation, west-central Liard Basin, British Columbia (94N/14)

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-11

F. Ferri, and J. Reyes

Middle Devonian to Lower Carboniferous shales and siltstones of the Besa River Formation that are exposed in the Caribou Range of west-central Liard Basin are lithologically similar to time-equivalent shale-gas bearing rocks in the subsurface of the eastern Liard Basin and, farther east, in the Horn River Basin. Complimenting a nearly identical data set obtained from the Besa River Formation in southern Liard Basin and previous investigations, herein we present the full dataset from a continuous stratigraphic section that we measured and systematically sampled in the Caribou Range of northernmost British Columbia.

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2019-12:   Rock-Eval, lithogeochemistry, gamma ray spectrometry, thermal maturity, and X-ray diffraction analysis of the Grayling and Toad formations (Montney and Doig formations equivalent), Halfway River map area (94B/14)

Cover image of GeoFile 2019-12

F. Ferri, M. Golding, and J. Reyes

Triassic calcareous siltstones and fine-grained sandstones of the Grayling and Toad formations exposed in the Halfway River area of the Rocky Mountains in northeastern British Columbia represent the western equivalents of gas-bearing units in the Montney and Doig formations in the subsurface of the Western Canada Sedimentary Basin. To better document these units, herein we present the results of a section, more than 640 metres thick, that we systematically measured and sampled across the Grayling and Toad formations and the lower part of the Liard Formation. These results include lithologic, organic and whole rock geochemical, thermal maturation, x-ray diffraction, and gamma ray spectrometer data.

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2019-13:   Reconnaissance mapping in the Lardeau Group, southeastern British Columbia, with implications for Outokumpu-style deposits and high-technology battery metals, Ni and Co. 

Image of BCGS GeoFile 2019-13

Mihalynuk, M. G. 

In 1981, unusual polymetallic mineralization (Ni-Cu-Co- Zn-Ag) was discovered near Kaslo, in southeast British Columbia. However, it was not until 2017 that John Drobe (Cardero Resources) recognized its similarity with Outokumpu-style sea-floor detachment related deposits in Finland, for which a refined deposit model has only arisen in the last decade. Ni and Co are enriched in these Besshi-like deposits because they develop over mantle but why are they in the “passive continental margin” succession of North America? Previous workers have mapped small mafic/ultramafic intrusions. Could some be mantle? Plus, how extensive is this mineralization within the 300+ km long Lardeau belt? 

In 2018, during a week-long reconnaissance mapping and sampling program, we looked into this “Outokumpu-style” mineralization to see if further study was needed. This poster presents some preliminary findings as well as an introduction to major questions about unit correlation that persist in the Kootenay region of southeastern British Columbia.

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2019-14:   Supplementary data for multi-media geochemical and Pb isotopic evaluation of modern drainages on Vancouver Island

Image of BCGS GeoFile 2019-14

Rukhlov, A.S., Fortin, G., Kaplenkov, G.N., Lett, R.E., Lai, V. W.-M., and Weis, D.

This GeoFile serves as a data repository for interpretations presented by Rukhlov et al. (2020). It provides tables with field data, sample details, analytical results and quality control of geochemical and Pb isotopic analyses of stream and moss mat-sediment, heavy mineral concentrate, rock, and stream water samples, and modal mineralogy of heavy mineral concentrate samples by QEMSCAN. The samples were collected from the Loss Creek placer gold occurrence on southern Vancouver Island and from streams draining prospective rocks of the Bonanza Group (Late Triassic to Middle Jurassic) hosting porphyry Cu-Mo-Au, epithermal Au-Ag-Cu and related mineralization on northern Vancouver Island. ​

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2019-01:     Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018

Information Circular 2019-01 front cover image

G. Clarke, B. Northcote, F. Katay, and J.R. DeGrace 

This volume is the latest in a series of annual reviews that dates back to 1874, when the first Annual Report of the Minister of Mines was published. Detailing significant projects region-by-region, the volume complements the British Columbia Coal Industry Overview (British Columbia Geological Survey Information Circular 2019-02). To prepare the district chapters in this volume, the Regional Geologists visit project sites to view outcrops and drill core and to discuss results and progress. A significant amount of information is gleaned from corporate press releases, websites and reports.

Clarke, G., Northcote, B., Katay, F., and DeGrace, J.R., 2019. Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018: A summary. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 1-37. (PDF)

DeGrace, J.R., 2019: Exploration and mining in the North Central and Northeast regions, British Columbia. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 39-56. (PDF)

Katay, F., 2019. Exploration and mining in the Southeast Region, British Columbia. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 57-82. (PDF)

Northcote, B., 2019. Exploration and mining in the South Central Region, British Columbia. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 83-99. (PDF)

Northcote, B., 2019. Exploration and mining in the Southwest Region, British Columbia. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 101-113. (PDF)

Clarke, G., 2019. Exploration and mining in the Northwest Region, British Columbia. In: Provincial Overview of Exploration and Mining in British Columbia, 2018. British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, British Columbia Geological Survey, Information Circular 2019-01, pp. 115-133 (PDF)

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2019-02:     British Columbia Coal Industry Overview, 2018 ​​

BCGS Information Circular 2019-02

Coal prices remained stable and strong for the second consecutive year in 2018. Coal production volumes for the province are forecast to total more than 31 million tonnes. Coal remains British Columbia’s most valuable mined commodity in terms of annual sales. Coking coal and PCI (pulverized coal injection) products are currently produced from four mines in the Kootenay Mountains in the southeastern part of the province, and from three mines in the Peace coalfields in the northeastern part. Thermal coal is produced from the Quinsam mine on Vancouver Island.

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