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Waitahuna River Cu prospect, Clutha District, Otago Region, South Island, New Zealand

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Latitude & Longitude (WGS84): 45° 55' 58'' South , 169° 49' 2'' East
Latitude & Longitude (decimal): -45.93303,169.81731
Köppen climate type:Cfb : Temperate oceanic climate

Described as on the banks of the Waitahuna River, 15 kilometres north of Waitahuna, 1.8 kilometres west of Waitahuna-Waipori Road and 5 kilometres south of Lake Mahinerangi.

Mindat co-ordinates are approximate.

The prospect is a small vein of fine grained sulphides, 0.6 metres thick, exposed along the river bank. Pyrite and chalcopyrite dominate.

Across 1880 to 1883, the Waitahuna Copper Lode Company sank a shaft to a depth of 21 metres, and drove two cross-cuts, driving on the extension of a limonitic gossan, 60 metres north-east of the now flooded shaft.

The lode is hosted by greenish schist, microscopically consisting of albite, chlorite, epidote, clinozoisite, muscovite, quartz, fine grained graphite, minor titanite, rare grains of blue tourmaline.

The ore is fine grained grey to yellowish ore from mostly sulphide to disseminated. The study (Lowery, 1979) was an examination of ore specimens from the spoil heap at the microscopic level, so some species listed may not be readily apparent in hand specimens.

The dominant species is pyrite and chalcopyrite, with more minor marcasite, pyrrhotite, sphalerite, and minute amounts of covellite. Veinlets of limonite cut the ore. Gange includes albite, quartz, siderite, muscovite, and small amounts of epidote, chlorite, and titanite.

Mineral List

14 valid minerals.

Rock Types Recorded

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Alphabetical List Tree Diagram

Regional Geology

This geological map and associated information on rock units at or nearby to the coordinates given for this locality is based on relatively small scale geological maps provided by various national Geological Surveys. This does not necessarily represent the complete geology at this locality but it gives a background for the region in which it is found.

Click on geological units on the map for more information. Click here to view full-screen map on Macrostrat.org

Triassic - Permian
201.3 - 298.9 Ma

ID: 3189657
Paleozoic-Mesozoic crystalline metamorphic rocks

Age: Phanerozoic (201.3 - 298.9 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Haast Schist

Comments: Caples Terrane

Lithology: Metawacke; greenschist/almandine amphibolite grade metasedimentary/metavolcanic schist

Reference: Chorlton, L.B. Generalized geology of the world: bedrock domains and major faults in GIS format: a small-scale world geology map with an extended geological attribute database. doi: 10.4095/223767. Geological Survey of Canada, Open File 5529. [154]

201.3 - 252.17 Ma

ID: 1310831
Caples Group TZIII schist

Age: Triassic (201.3 - 252.17 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Caples Group

Description: Schistose (TZIII) volcaniclastic sandstone, siltstone, mudstone and conglomerate with included volcanics and limestone; minor quartzite, metachert and serpentinite.

Comments: Eastern Province (Caples Terrane) Rocks

Lithology: Limestone, quartzite, chert, serpentinite

Reference: Edbrooke, S.W., Heron, D.W., Forsyth, P.J., Jongens, R. (compilers). Geology Map of New Zealand 1:1 000 000. GNS Science Geological Map 2. [12]

Norian - Kungurian
208.5 - 279.3 Ma

ID: 1350455
Undifferentiated Caples Terrane TZIII schist

Age: Phanerozoic (208.5 - 279.3 Ma)

Stratigraphic Name: Caples Group

Description: Well foliated psammitic and pelitic schist with incipient segregration; minor greenschist and metachert; qtz veins common; TZIII.

Comments: Basement (Eastern Province) metamorphic rocks. Age based on stratigraphic correlation, K-Ar dating

Lithology: Major:: {schist},Minor:: {psammite, pelite, metachert, greenschist}

Reference: Heron, D.W. . Geology Map of New Zealand 1:250 000. GNS Science Geological Map 1. [13]

Data and map coding provided by Macrostrat.org, used under Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License

This page contains all mineral locality references listed on mindat.org. This does not claim to be a complete list. If you know of more minerals from this site, please register so you can add to our database. This locality information is for reference purposes only. You should never attempt to visit any sites listed in mindat.org without first ensuring that you have the permission of the land and/or mineral rights holders for access and that you are aware of all safety precautions necessary.


Sort by Year (asc) | by Year (desc) | by Author (A-Z) | by Author (Z-A)
Lowery, J.H. (1979) Mineragraphy and origin of copper bearing sulphides at Waitahuna River, eastern Otago. New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics, 22:1, 29-40.
Railton, G.T., Watters, W.A. (1990) Minerals of New Zealand. New Zealand Geological Survey Bulletin 104, 89 pages.

Mineral and/or Locality  
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