Prairie Creek Project

Click for more information



Mine TypeUnderground
  • Zinc
  • Lead
  • Silver
Mining Method
  • Longhole open stoping
  • Longitudinal retreat
  • Uppers Retreat
Backfill type ... Lock
Mine Life... Lock
SnapshotPrairie Creek Project Recent Achievements:
- Strategic purchase of Wolverine Mine mill and power plant mitigates financing and construction risk.
- Construction of Phase 1 of All-Season Access Road (“ASR”) complete, and permitting commenced for final Phase 2.
- Receipt of full permits for for construction of Phase 1 of the ASR.
- Major permitting progress – Full new mining permits received for 2,400tpd mine expansion.
- Transport Corridor Benefits Agreement signed with Acho Dene Koe First Nation.
- Environmental Agreement signed with Naha Dehe Dene Band and the Liidlii Kue First Nation Band.
- 2,400 tpd expansion amendment mining license proceeded without an Environmental Assessment Final IBA signed with Lidlii Kue First Nation (Road Benefit Agreement).


RCF VI CAD LLC 100 % Indirect
NorZinc is the 100% owner of the Property.

On December 13, 2022, NorZinc Ltd. ("NorZinc") announced that NorZinc and RCF VI CAD LLC ("RCF") have completed the previously announced acquisition by RCF of NorZinc.



- subscription is required.

Deposit type

  • Breccia pipe / Stockwork
  • Vein / narrow vein
  • Mississippi Valley Type
  • Stratabound
  • Hydrothermal


Four main styles of base metal mineralization have been identified on the Property:
• Hydrothermal Quartz Veins (MQV);
• Stockwork (STK);
• Stratabound (SMS); and
• Mississippi Valley type (MVT).

MQV Mineralization
Vein-type mineralization developed within the cherty dolomites of the Ordovician-Silurian age Upper Whittaker Formation and shaly dolomites of the lower Road River Formation, along the axial plane of the Prairie Creek Anticline (PCA).

MQV type mineralization comprises massive to disseminated galena and sphalerite with lesser pyrite and tetrahedrite-tennantite in a quartz-carbonate-dolomite matrix. Secondary oxidation is variably developed, yielding mainly cerussite (lead oxide) and smithsonite (zinc oxide); tetrahedrite-tennantite has undergone only minor oxidation. Silver is present in solid solution with tetrahedrite-tennantite and to a lesser extent with galena. Veins dip steeply to the east; widths generally vary between less than 0.1 m up to 5 m, with an average horizontal thickness of approximately 2.7 m.

The MQV is the most extensively developed of the known mineral zones. Underground development and diamond drilling have demonstrated the continuity of the MQV over a horizontal strike length of 2.3 km. The MQV trends approximately north-south and dips between vertical and 40º east (average dip is 65º east). It remains open to the north and may continue for a further 4 km to the Rico showing. Diamond drilling has indicated continuity to a depth of at least 450 masl.

Mineralization is best developed in the more competent (brittle) units of the Lower Road River and Whittaker Formations; graphitic shale in the mid and upper parts of the Road River Formation is less competent and contained veins are poorly developed. For example, at the end of 930 mL the MQV can be seen to dissipate into the middle-Road River shales. As well, the vein does not appear to be well developed in the shales of the Cadillac Formation lying stratigraphically above the Road River Formation.

STK Mineralization
Towards the end of 930 mL at Crosscut 30, a series of narrow (average 0.3 m wide), massive sphalerite-galena-tennantite veins are developed at about 40º to the average trend of the MQV. These sub-vertical veins range in thickness from 0.1 to 0.5 m, have no apparent alteration halo, and are separated from each other by unmineralized dolomite. The veins are locally offset and cut off by fault planes and are difficult to correlate at the present level of information. This style of mineralization is referred to as STK, although it does not represent a true stockwork but rather a series of splays off the MQV. To date, STK-style mineralization has only been located in the immediate area surrounding the exposure in the 930 mL workings and through diamond drilling. There is also evidence that the STK may be exposed on surface towards the northern end of the main zone but is partially obscured by alluvium.

SMS Mineralization
SMS mineralization was discovered by NZC in 1992 while testing the depth extent of the MQV.

Mineralization is generally fine-grained, banded to semi-massive, and comprises massive fine-grained sphalerite, coarsegrained galena and disseminated to massive pyrite. Silver is contained in solid solution within both galena and sphalerite and the SMS mineralization contains no tennantite- tetrahedrite, very little copper, half as much galena, but substantially more iron sulphide/pyrite than typical vein mineralization. Fragments of SMS mineralization occur in vein mineralization indicating that the SMS predates the veins.

The majority of SMS mineralization occurs within the Mottled Dolomite unit of the Whittaker Formation, which the mineralization totally replaces without any significant alteration. SMS sulphides are developed close to both the vein system and the axis of the PCA and are presumably older than the vein mineralization. An apparent thickness of up to 28 m of SMS mineralization has been intersected in MQV drillholes, approximately 200 m below 883 mL.

MVT Mineralization
MVT mineralization found on the Property is comprised of colloform rims of sphalerite, brassy pyrite-marcasite and minor galena, with or without later dolomite infilling. The mineralization appears to occur discontinuously within coarse biohermal reefs of the Root River Formation, and always at approximately the same stratigraphic horizon. It appears to be classic MVT mineralization insofar as it occurs in open cavity-type settings.



- subscription is required.

Mining Methods


- subscription is required.


Crushers and Mills


- subscription is required.



- subscription is required.


CommodityProductUnitsDailyAvg. AnnualLOM
Zinc Concentrate kt  ....  Subscribe2,283
Zinc Metal in concentrate M lbs 2,919
Lead Concentrate kt  ....  Subscribe1,626
Lead Payable metal M lbs 1012,043
Lead Metal in concentrate M lbs 2,151
Silver Payable metal koz 2,55151,866
Silver Metal in concentrate koz 62,127
Zinc Equivalent Payable metal M lbs 2615,306

Operational metrics

Daily ore mining rate  ....  Subscribe
Daily processing capacity  ....  Subscribe
Annual ore mining rate  ....  Subscribe
Annual processing capacity  ....  Subscribe
Ore tonnes mined, LOM  ....  Subscribe
Tonnes processed, LOM  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2021 study.

Production Costs

C1 cash costs Zinc Equivalent USD  ....  Subscribe
C1 cash costs Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe
C3 fully allocated costs Zinc Equivalent USD  ....  Subscribe
C3 fully allocated costs Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe
Assumed price Lead USD  ....  Subscribe
Assumed price Zinc USD  ....  Subscribe
Assumed price Silver USD  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2021 study / presentation.
** Net of By-Product.

Operating Costs

UG mining costs ($/t milled) USD 54 *  
Processing costs ($/t milled) USD  ....  Subscribe
G&A ($/t milled) USD  ....  Subscribe
Total operating costs ($/t milled) USD  ....  Subscribe
* According to 2021 study.

Project Costs

MetricsUnitsLOM Total
Initial CapEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Sustaining CapEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Closure costs $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Total CapEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
UG OpEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Processing OpEx $M USD 457
Transportation (haulage) costs $M USD 982
G&A costs $M USD 208
Total OpEx $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Income Taxes $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Total Taxes $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Royalty payments $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Gross revenue (LOM) $M USD  ......  Subscribe
EBITDA (LOM) $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax Cash Flow (LOM) $M USD  ......  Subscribe
After-tax Cash Flow (LOM) $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax NPV @ 5% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax NPV @ 10% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax NPV @ 8% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
After-tax NPV @ 5% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
After-tax NPV @ 10% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
After-tax NPV @ 8% $M USD  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax IRR, %  ......  Subscribe
After-tax IRR, %  ......  Subscribe
Pre-tax payback period, years  ......  Subscribe
After-tax payback period, years  ......  Subscribe

Heavy Mobile Equipment


- subscription is required.


Mine Management

Job TitleNameProfileRef. Date
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Dec 28, 2023
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Dec 28, 2023
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Oct 15, 2021
....................... Subscription required ....................... Subscription required Subscription required Oct 15, 2021

Total WorkforceYear
...... Subscription required 2021


- subscription is required.