San Emidio Desert, Nevada
About 1900 the first mining claims were filed for native sulfur, mercury, and opal. In the 1930’s the depression spurred new interest in the area with numerous prospect pits and adits being dug for silver and gold. Exploration for geothermal energy was undertaken by Chevron in 1975 and 1978 with two geothermal test wells of 1,223 and 1,636 meters. As far as is known, significant exploration for minerals has not taken place on the current property.
The entire San Emidio Desert basin is about 38 km long and up to 11 km wide at the widest point. The central playa measures about 8.5 km north – south and 4.5 km east – west. The basin is bounded on the west by the Fox Range and on the east by the Lake Range. A low divide in the valley floor splits the valley with another playa about 18 km north of the property. In the area of the San Emidio Desert playa, the valley appears to be about 2,000 meters deep, primarily filled with poorly sorted coarse conglomerate, gravel, sand and silt in the upper part of the section with volcanic rocks, and tuff beds, and volcanic sediments in the lower part of the section (Rhodes, 2011). Within the playa, the majority of the exposure is very finelake bed clays and wind-blown sand. Outcrops of iron-rich travertine and algal mound tufa are found around the springs to the west of the property.
Exposed mineralization is confined to salt crust on the playa surface and other locations in the valley. Since lithium brine is not well defined as “mineralization” in the conventional sense, it is difficult to identify in outcrop exposures; it can only truly be identified in water via chemical analysis (Houston, 2011). The main mineral target at San Emidio Desert is a playa-related lithium brine deposit similar to productive playas in Clayton Valley, Nevada and several areas of South America. The San Emidio Desert lithium project is a conceptual exploration play based on solid geologic information and favorable comparison to the lithium brine model.
Twenty one stream sediment samples from drainages in the Fox and Lake Ranges that flow into Dixie Valley averaged 25.3 ppm Li with a range of 12 to 43 ppm (USGS NURE and RASS geochemical data bases). Leaching of lithium from volcanic ash and other rocks in the ranges around the basin is also a likely source of metal. In situ leaching and concentration of lithium in ash layers within the basin fill is also a potential exploration target.
A grid soil sampling program was conducted on the San Emidio Desert project to test for lithium and other elements in the surface soils. A total of 172 samples were collected on 200 meter intervals on lines spaced 400 meters apart. The goal of the program was to determine if lithium was present in the surface sediments and evaporites on the San Emidio playa.
Lithium values ranged from 30.3 to 600 ppm with a mean of 220 ppm and a median value of 215.5 ppm. These values are comparable to those obtained at Teels Marsh, Nevada by Dajin Resources (55 – 460 ppm Li in Coolbaugh, 2016 and in clay separates at Clayton Valley, Nevada (300 – 1,100 ppm Li in Hulan, 2008). It is not known what relationship, if any, exists between lithium values in clay concentrates and those in bulk soil samples. The values from this program indicate that lithium is present in the ground water, is being concentrated in the evaporites, and provides feed material for gravity concentration of brines at depth.
Technical aspects of this website have been reviewed and approved by Eric Saderholm, PGeo, the designated qualified person (QP) under National Instrument 43-101.