Condor, is pleased to announce that the first phase of soil sampling has been completed over an area of 55km² identified as prospective for hidden deep-seated gold mineralisation.
5,767 B-horizon soil samples have been collected on 200m by 50m grid spacing, closed up to 100m by 50m in areas of interest, and analysed for 53 elements to ultra-trace detection limits using a standard ICP-MS package offered by Acme Labs in Vancouver. The results have enhanced the district-scale geological and epithermal gold mineralisation model and have identified several target zones within linear features for further exploration for hidden deep- seated gold deposits.
Mark Child CEO comments:
"Condor has completed soil sampling programmes on 6 areas covering 55km² of the 313km² La India Project. The areas were chosen as they potentially contain underground gold deposits. Of particular interest is a clear linear anomaly, which has been defined and appears to be a southeast strike continuation of the Andrea Vein, extending the Andrea hydrothermal conduit from a 2km long vein to a 4 to 7km long corridor. The soil sampling programme is part of Condor's strategy of demonstrating the significant exploration upside of 2.4M oz gold at 4.0g/t reserve and resource at La India Project. Condor has commissioned an expert structural geologist to compile a detailed structural model aimed at producing additional exploration targets, a summary of the report will be released in the near future."
Background and Rationale
In 2013 Condor geologists completed a district-scale study aimed at identifying and ranking areas that have the potential to host hidden deep-seated gold mineralisation. The study integrated an airborne magnetic and radiometric survey flown earlier in that year, high-resolution satellite digital terrain modelling and imaging data also acquired that year, and the existing geological mapping and exploration database to create a new model of the gold mineralisation system in La India District. Geological structures that were interpreted as potential conduits for gold mineralised hydrothermal fluids, and where the surface exposures were interpreted as being at a high-level in the epithermal system, above the boiling zone where most of the gold is usually deposited, were identified and ranked for prospectivity. This exercise identified six areas for further exploration using soil geochemistry surveying methods optimised to detect the pathfinder elements that will have been vented along structures above the gold-enriched boiling zone.
The first phase of soil sampling has covered these priority target areas with a relatively tight-spaced 200m by 50m soil survey grid, initially over the 11km² La India South-Mojarra area reported in a press release of 29th May 2015, and then over a further 44 km² covering the Cacao-Central Breccia trend, El Tanque area, Tatascame area, Santa Barbara Hill and Real de La Cruz area (see Figure 1 below).
To view Figure 1, please visit on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/Figure1Phase1.jpg
Analysis of Results
Initial analysis of the multi-element soil geochemical data has enhanced both the regional geological model and the hydrothermal fluid flow model. Mafic, intermediate and felsic rocks have distinct chemical signatures which are reflected in the soil geochemistry in areas with little or no rock outcrops. For example the soil survey data has improved mapping of the distribution of three principal basalt lava flows in La Mojarra, El Tanque and Tatascame. This improved bedrock geology map helps in interpreting the faults that host gold mineralisation.
The main aim of the soil survey is to improve the regional model of the gold-bearing hydrothermal system. The soil sampling has proved particularly useful in areas such as El Tanque and Tatascame where the outcrops of gold mineralised rocks are restricted to small exposures of quartz stockwork or quartz breccia where the overall strike direction is not apparent. At El Tanque ultra-trace level gold and other pathfinder elements indicative of hydrothermal alteration and mineralisation have defined both a northwest-southeast and an east-west striking mineralisation trend. At Tatascame a clear linear anomaly with a northwest-southeast orientation has been defined which appears to be a southeast strike continuation of the Andrea Vein, extending the
Andrea hydrothermal conduit from a 2km long vein to a 4 to 7km long corridor. On all these linear anomalies sectors where the boiling zone mineralisation is exposed at surface have been differentiated from sectors of high level fluid venting, The sectors within or just above the boiling zone are characterised by elevated gold and silver values, the high level sectors which will be targeted for exploration for hidden gold mineralisation are elevated in arsenic, mercury, tellurium and thallium.
In other areas where the surface exposure of a vein is of limited strike extent the pathfinder elements have demonstrated additional strike continuity of hydrothermal activity, suggesting that the gold bearing vein could be considerably longer beneath the surface. For example soil geochemistry demonstrates that hydrothermal activity on the structure that hosts the 400m long Cristalito Resource of 202kt at 5.27g/t for 34k oz gold actually extends for at least 1,200m. Extensions of veins beneath the surface has already been successfully demonstrated at the flagship La India deposit where recent exploration drilling has returned significant gold intercepts at depth where there is only a soil anomaly at surface (see press release dated 29th May 2015) (see Figure 2 below).
To view Figure 2, please visit on the following link: http://media3.marketwire.com/docs/Figure2Principal.jpg
Current and Future Exploration
The soil survey is currently being extended along a trend to the northwest of the El Tanque area using a broader 400m by 100m sample spacing to complete coverage of the prospective El Tanque structure identified in the 2013 targeting exercise.
Two soil anomalies identified on the La Mojarra area have already been drill tested: El Carrizal and Cerro El Pilon soil anomalies, located approximately 1.7km to the south and south-east respectively of La India open pit Mineral Reserve. High-level epithermal alteration and barren calcite veining were intersected at depths of up to 200m below surface at both localities suggesting that any gold mineralisation would be deeper and therefore beyond the target depth of the current exploration programme in these two targets.
More detailed analysis of variations in the pathfinder geochemisty along the fluid flow pathways, both horizontally and vertically is underway to further improve the identification of the geochemical fingerprint associated with venting of hydrothermal fluids and vapours at the top of an epithermal gold mineralisation system. The soil geochemistry results will be integrated with a review of the district-wide structural model that has been commissioned from a structural geology specialist and is currently underway. Further exploration will be planned on those structures that exhibit both a structural setting conducive to gold mineralisation and a geochemical signature indicative of deep- seated gold mineralisation.
The next phase of drilling is planned for the Real de La Cruz Concession to test beneath an area that displays both wide low-grade gold mineralised stockwork quartz zones of up to 63.6m at 1.01g/t gold in trench sampling, and also high-grade mineralisation in a cross-cutting 4m true width quartz breccia grading at up to 16.4g/t gold exposed in an artisanal pit wall (see RNS dated 19th August 2014). This drilling has been delayed until drilling permitting processes are completed.