Challenger Mine

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Mine TypeUnderground
  • Gold
  • Silver
Mining Method
  • Uppers Retreat
Production Start... Lock
Mine Life3.5 years (as of Jan 1, 2018)
ShapshotIn October 2018, the Challenger Project was placed into care and maintenance by the then-operator WPG, who was under at that time under administration. The Project comprises the Mine, the Mill, a Mine village and associated infrastructure, which are maintained in a state of care and maintenance.

The Challenger Mine was discovered in 1995 by Dominion Mining and produced ~1.2Moz Au in operations from 2002-2018. The Challenger Mill is a ~650ktpa CIP processing plant for production of gold doré.

Due to the depth of the Challenger mine and requirement for substantial investment to renew the geological understanding of the deposit at depth, it is not a priority focus for the Company.

However, the Challenger Mill presents an opportunity for processing regional mineralisation in the vicinity of the mill. It also provides an attractive option for trucking and processing of ore from the Company’s Tarcoola Project, which was previously undertaken during 2017 and 2018.


Barton Gold Holdings Ltd. 100 % Indirect
Challenger 2 Pty Ltd Owner of:

• Company’s interest(s) in Challenger Tenements;

• Challenger Mine, Challenger Mill, and Challenger Camp.

Deposit type

  • Metamorphic hosted
  • Vein / narrow vein


The Challenger deposit occurs within the Mulgathing Complex of the Christie Subdomain in the north- western Gawler Craton, with the area characterised by Archaean to mid-Proterozoic high- grade metamorphic (granulite facies) gneissic basement.

Gold mineralisation at the Challenger Mine occurs in deformed quartz veins within narrow plunging lodes hosted by gneiss. The lodes represent the limbs and hinge zones of an isoclinal fold package around 500m wide containing multiple subparallel lodes in a deposit with intense structural control and a dominant 30-degree plunge to the north east.

The mineralised structures are interpreted to have a high level of continuity with individual shoots being mined and interpreted through drilling data for over 2,200m of plunge extent from surface (1,193 mRL). The deposit extends from surface to -147 mRL (~1.3km depth).

Challenger lodes include Challenger West (CW), Challenger South-Southwest (CSSW), Aminus, M1, M2, M3 and South East Zone (SEZ). The lodes are offset some 150m in plan by the 215 Shear at a depth of 900 – 1,000 metres, but continue to plunge at a similar orientation below the shear and all are open to depth. M1 and M2 have been mined on several levels below the 215 Shear. The deposit has been developed to ~1,130m depth (065 mRL).

High-grade gold mineralisation is associated with coarse-grained quartz veins with feldspar, cordierite, and sulphides within a hornblende orthoclase chlorite-sericite alteration assemblage. There are three main types of vein styles:

• Quartz dominant veins, which may be remnant pre-metamorphic mineralised veins;
• Polysilicate veins, which are dominant in the primary ore zones and host the majority of the mineralisation; and
• Late stage pegmatitic veins, which are unmineralized, with cross-cutting relationships.

Coarse visible gold of variable size and in association with sulphide mineralisation is a common feature of the higher-grade ore zones.



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Mining Methods


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Crushers and Mills

Milling equipment has not been reported.



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Gold oz 50,88248,99280,151
Silver oz 1,626
All production numbers are expressed as metal in doré.

Operational metrics

Annual processing capacity 000
Ore tonnes mined 480,416 t518 kt509 kt
Tonnes processed 602,105 t386 kt515 kt

Production Costs

Cash costs Gold USD
Total cash costs Gold USD
All-in sustaining costs (AISC) Gold USD 1,532 / oz  

Operating Costs

Combined mining costs ($/t milled) USD 164.78  

Heavy Mobile Equipment

Fleet data has not been reported.


Mine Management

Source Source
Job TitleNamePhoneEmailProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Jan 5, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Jan 8, 2024
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required ........... Subscription required ........... Subscription required Oct 25, 2023

Aerial view:


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