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Yarramunmun Mine (18 February 2015)

contributed by DennisF
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Yarramunmun Mine High grade galena ore about 87% lead

The deposit was discovered by BHP in 1970. It consists of a mineralised quartz vein hosted in Ordovician fine grained sandstone and phyllite. The vein trends 340°mag and dips 60°W. The vein is generally up to 30cm wide and possibly up to 200m long. Mineralisation consists mainly of galena, with minor sphalerite and very minor chalcopyrite which also occurs up to 50cm away from the vein in brecciated host rock.

Yarramunmun Mine Former path of flying fox. View down cliff with Yarramunmun Creek below.

The deposit was acquired by Jack Doyle who worked the deposit in 1977, possibly in 1978. Doyle exposed 30m of the vein by a trench on the western side of Yarramunmun Creek. This trench was about a metre deep and a metre wide with a 2m pit at the northern end. Doyle set up an ingenious flying fox and winch that ran off the back axle of an old Holden car. Because of the steep terrain the hand picked ore was winched to the top of the cliffs where it was packed into 44 gall9n drums for transport to Port Pirie, South Australia, for smelting.

Yarramunmun Mine Old Holden used to power the flying fox cable that ran silver/lead ore up the Yarramunmun Creek gorge.  The winch was run from the rear brake drum which rotated in mid air via the car's engine and gearbox. Ingenious device used by the Doyle syndicate.

Doyle claims to have sent about $10,000 worth of ore to Port Pirie in 1977. One of his 10.14 tonne lots of hand picked ore assayed at 50% lead, 312 g/t silver and 7 g/t gold with a value of $333 per tonne. NSW Geological Survey samples assayed at 7.4% lead, 0.55% zinc, 122 g/t silver from the Y9 vein and 15.7% lead, 400 ppm zinc, 11.5 g/t silver from the Y8 vein.

Yarramunmun Mine Old Holden running winch in November 1977.  Picture is part of a report by NSW government geologist H.N. Bowman for the NSW  Department of Mineral Resources and Development who took the picture. Report GS1978/443

Source: NSW Geological Survey report GS 1978/443 by H.N.Bowman

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