Auteco Minerals’ (ASX: AUT) up to date useful resource estimate for its flagship 70%-owned Pickle Crow challenge “positions it as a possible world-class gold deposit located inside a tier-one mining jurisdiction,” says Darren Cooke, the corporate’s chief working officer.
The Australian junior’s newest drilling marketing campaign at Pickle Crow in northern Ontario, about 400 km north of Thunder Bay, intercepted high-grade mineralization and elevated the challenge’s JORC-compliant mineral useful resource by 30%, including 514,000 oz. of gold to the earlier estimate in June 2021.
Pickle Crow now comprises an inferred useful resource of 8.9 million tonnes grading 7.8 grams gold per tonne for two.23 million contained gold ounces.
Cooke says that Auteco’s substantial funding in drilling because it assumed management of the property in March 2020 has resulted in “fast and low-cost development within the useful resource at Pickle Crow and has added 1.23 million oz. of gold at a mean discovery price of A$17.58 ($16.48) per oz. of gold in simply 16 months.”
The drilling “focused each useful resource development and early-stage exploration and allowed us to make exceptional progress in discovery and extension of the mineralized vein system,” he mentioned. “The velocity and comparatively low price at which we’ve been capable of develop the useful resource demonstrates the standard of the challenge and the large potential for development of the orebody.”
The up to date useful resource estimate consists of drill outcomes from 29,883 metres of a 50,000-metre diamond core drill program that began final June and centered on near-mine discovery, extension of the recognized mineralized veins, and infill drilling to outline the orebody higher.
Highlights included drillhole AUDD0246, which intersected 7.3 metres grading 33.3 grams gold per tonne from 9.4 metres downhole; AUDD0200, which returned two metres of 68.3 grams gold from 470.7 metres; and AUDD0166W1, which hit 1.8 metres of 21.2 grams gold from 838 metres.
Gold was first found at Pickle Crow within the early Nineteen Thirties. From 1935 to 1966, the Pickle Crow mine produced 1.5 million oz. of gold at 16 grams gold per tonne and stays one in every of Canada’s highest-grade historic gold mines.
The five hundred-sq.-km Pickle Crow property lies inside the prolific Uchi subprovince of Ontario, which hosts a number of world-class gold mines and deposits. These embody Evolution Mining’s (ASX: EVN) Purple Lake underground mine, about 250 km west of Pickle Crow; the Musselwhite underground mine, about 120 km to the north, owned by Newmont (TSX: NGT; NYSE: NEM); and First Mining Gold’s (TSX: FF; US-OTC: FFMGF) Springpole challenge, one of many largest undeveloped deposits in Canada, 150 km to the west.
To this point, Auteco has accomplished roughly 92,000 metres of drilling at Pickle Crow that has recognized a number of sorts of mineralization on the property. These embody a high-grade slim quartz vein useful resource, which the newest drilling has elevated to six.4 million tonnes at 9.3 grams gold per tonne for 1.92 million oz. of gold. And an alteration-hosted near-surface useful resource inside a Banded Iron Formation (BIF) containing broad zones of sulphide mineralisation that the drilling has grown to 2.5 million tonnes at 3.8 grams gold per tonne for 304,000 oz. of gold.
In accordance with Cooke, the mineral useful resource lies inside a 2.8 km zone of the northeast trending core mine shear zone. The ore zones are interpreted to increase past a depth of 1,500 metres primarily based on historic drilling on the property.
“This mix of slim and bulk kinds of mineralization has the potential to offer us with appreciable operational flexibility, with the sulphide useful resource hosted by the BIF amenable to bulk mining strategies together with open-pit extraction and bulk underground mining,” he mentioned.
Current drilling on the BIF returned vital intercepts of high-grade mineralization, together with holes AUDD0228, which intersected 10.5 metres of three.6 grams gold from 126 metres, and AUDD0220, which returned 19.5 metres of three.3 grams gold from 340.7 metres.
Along with the potential scale and grade of the useful resource at Pickle Crow, Cooke says the challenge additionally advantages drastically from being situated in a tier-one mining jurisdiction.
“The challenge may be accessed year-round by way of a paved highway that connects with State Route 590, is only some hours’ drive from the airport at Sioux Lookout, and has an influence line working by means of the property that would offer the challenge with clear, cheap hydroelectricity,” he mentioned. “The lengthy historical past of mining within the area additionally gives the challenge with a talented workforce shut at hand.”
The property additionally comprises an current 225-tonne-per-day processing plant. Constructed in 2004 however by no means commissioned, the plant consists of a crushing circuit, ball mill, and concentrators.
Cooke mentioned that “this inherited infrastructure gives a pathway to a low-capital, staged start-up manufacturing and the potential for early cash-flow era.”
“We’ve got choices to restart the plant and generate early money move as we proceed to outline the scale of the geological system and decide the right-sized infrastructure that shall be required to maximise financial returns in the long run. Choices embody a re-start and improve of the processing plant to 900 tonnes-per-day and so as to add carbon-in-leach processing to the prevailing gravity circuit, which could possibly be achieved for as little as $40 million.”
Auteco plans to finish the 50,000-metre drill program on Pickle Crow over the subsequent few weeks. It has 5 drill rigs turning, two of that are centered on extending the present useful resource space and three are centered on regional exploration targets exterior the historic mine space.
On the shut of 2021, Auteco had A$10.5 million ($9.8 million) within the treasury and not too long ago added a further A$20 million ($18.7 million) by way of a capital elevating “so we’re well-funded to proceed our exploration and useful resource development program at Pickle Crow,” mentioned Cooke.
The corporate additionally has a three way partnership on the Limestone Effectively vanadium-titanium challenge in Western Australia.
The previous Joint-Enterprise Article is PROMOTED CONTENT sponsored by AUTECO MINERALS and produced in cooperation with The Northern Miner. Go to www.autecominerals.com for extra info.