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The 19,150-acre Marble Canyon Wilderness Study Area (NV-040-086) was evaluated for mineral resources (known) and mineral resource potential (undiscovered), and field work was conducted in 1987. The acreage includes 6,435 acres that is now designated as part of the Mount Moriah Wilderness under the Nevada Wilderness Protection Act of 1989 (S. 974), most but not all of which is included in 8,300 acres fro which the U.S. Bureau of Land Management requested a mineral survey. In this report, the "wilderness study area," or simply "the study area" refers to the entire 19,150-acre tract. The area in underlain by quartzite shale and carbonate rocks. The norther Snake Range decollement is a detachment surface within the study area that separates rocks of similar age but different metamorphic grade. Large inferred subeconomic limestone and marble resources i the study area have no special or unique properties. The mineral resource potential for limestone and marble is high in two canyons and is moderate in the rest of the wilderness study area. Parts of the study area above and along the northern Snake Range decollement have low potential for undiscovered deposits of gold, silver, copper, lead, zinc, tungsten, molybdenum, beryllium, and flourite. A zone around barite-bearing rock penetrated by adits inside the southeast boundary of the study area has moderate potential for barite, and the surrounding area has low potential for barite; both areas also have low potential for silver, copper, lead, zinc, and tungsten. The entire study area has moderate potential for oil and gas and low potential for geothermal energy resources.


Open-File Report 90-0522