Although regional till sampling has been conducted in southern Alberta for extraction and analysis of kimberlite indicator minerals, most of the discoveries in northern Alberta were made with airborne and ground geophysical techniques, including seismic, magnetics and gravity. In northern Alberta, indicator mineral analysis may not be effective for detecting kimberlites because kimberlites are decoupled from streams draining upland areas by thick till cover, and the remoteness of northern Alberta makes basal till collection difficult and prohibitively expensive. Instead of pursuing mechanically dispersed anomalies from buried kimberlite pipes, this program focused on searching for pathfinder elements in plant tissue, soil, till and bog sediments that have been chemically dispersed from weathered kimberlites under glacial drift.
A total of 806 samples was collected during detailed orientation surveys at Mountain Lake (1 pipe), Buffalo Head Hills (3 pipes) and Birch Mountains (1 pipe). The results of the 2000 fiscal year geochemical program are summarized in the report.
Seneshen, D.M., Grunsky, E.C., Rencz, A., Hall, G.E.M. and Dunn, C.E. (2005): Geochemical orientation surveys (fiscal year 2000-2001) for kimberlites in northern Alberta; Alberta Energy and Utilities Board, EUB/AGS Earth Sciences Report 2005-01, 243 p.