Pilot Gold Inc. ("Pilot Gold" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that it has commenced a 10-hole core drilling program for metallurgical and other purposes at its Goldstrike Project in southwestern Utah. The primary target is Carlin-style shallow, oxide gold mineralization on the 7 km long "Historic Mine Trend".
The ten core holes will be drilled using PQ large diameter core, and will be used to:
- Provide sample material for metallurgical studies, including column testing, scheduled for later in 2016
- Provide samples for density measurements, needed for accurate resource estimation
- Further infill areas of the "Historic Mine Trend" now being targeted with the ongoing RC resource definition program
- Provide for better definition and modeling of structural and stratigraphic controls on mineralization
- Provide sample material as needed for engineering studies
The contractor for the core drilling program is Major Drilling of Salt Lake City, Utah. The metallurgical program will be overseen by consulting metallurgist Gary Simmons, who has directed a large number of metallurgical programs in similar rocks for Pilot Gold and its predecessor Fronteer Gold Inc.
The core drilling program was originally planned for late 2016. However, given the positive results from RC drilling to date, the program was moved up in order to commence metallurgical testing sooner and receive results in 2016.
Highlights from 2015 and 2016 RC drilling to date include (see press releases dated April 12, 2016, January 14, 2016 and December 1, 2015):
- 1.01 g/t Au over 39.6 metres in PGS003
- 0.84 g/t Au over 41.1 metres in PGS004
- 0.85 g/t Au over 35.1 metres in PGS007
- 1.68 g/t Au over 22.9 metres in PGS008
- 1.06 g/t Au over 36.6 metres in PGS010
- 2.10 g/t Au over 35.1 metres, including 4.42 g/t Au over 13.7 metres in PGS019
- 1.56 g/t Au over 27.4 metres, including 1.98 g/t Au over 19.8 metres in PGS025
- 1.19 g/t Au over 57.9 metres, including 1.65 g/t Au over 30.5 metres in PGS026
For a complete table of results for all drilling by Pilot Gold at Goldstrike in 2015 and to date in 2016, please click here: http://pilotgold.com/sites/default/files/Goldstrike-Drill-Results-since-2015-04122016.pdf
The core holes will replace previously-planned RC holes, to avoid unnecessary duplication and cost. Eight of the holes will be located in the eastern portion of the Historic Mine Trend (Km 6 N and Km 5 N), with two located in the western part of the Historic Mine Trend. For a map showing the planned locations of core holes, please click here: http://pilotgold.com/sites/default/files/GoldStrike_PR20160421.pdf
RC drilling is also ongoing, with on average 5 RC drill holes completed per week.
Pilot Gold acquired 100% of the Goldstrike Project through the acquisition of Cadillac Mining Corporation in August, 2014 (see press release dated August 29, 2014).The primary target is Carlin-style shallow, oxide gold mineralization.
2016 RC and Core Drilling Program
The objective of the 2016 RC and core drilling program is to target unmined and/or undrilled areas between and around the historic pits, and to drill test down-dip to the north of, and laterally beyond, the Historic Mine Trend into areas where gold has been confirmed but not systematically drilled off. The holes will average approximately 150 metres in length. The scope of the program is open-ended and dependent on results. At least 100 RC drill holes are covered in the Phase 1 2016 drill budget. The core holes and metallurgical study costs are a supplement to the RC drill program budget. The metallurgical program will test the amenability of oxide material in newly-discovered areas of mineralization to leaching, over a range of particle sizes. Historical mining at Goldstrike (1988-1994) was 100% run of mine material that returned approximately 75% recovery on the heap leach pads(1).
The goal is to advance the Goldstrike Project to a resource estimate by year end, incorporating new and historical RC drill hole data over a broad area.
Goldstrike Property and Geology
Goldstrike is located in the eastern Great Basin, immediately adjacent to the Utah/Nevada border, and is a Carlin-style gold system, similar in many ways to the prolific deposits located along Nevada's Carlin trend. Like Kinsley Mountain and Newmont's Long Canyon deposit, Goldstrike represents part of a growing number of Carlin-type systems located off the main Carlin and Cortez trends in largely underexplored parts of the Great Basin. The Goldstrike Property comprises 96 km2 of US federal lode claims, patented (private) claims and Utah State leases.
Previous mining at Goldstrike occurred from 1988 to 1994, with 209,000 ounces of gold produced from 12 shallow pits, at an average grade of 1.2 grams Au/tonne. Historical gold recovery is documented to be 75% from run of mine (1). The historic mine is now fully reclaimed.
Over a 12-month period, the Company compiled and digitized approximately 20 years of historical exploration and mining data, including 1519 shallow drill holes, ~100,000 blast holes and surface geological and geochemical data. A robust 3D model was generated, followed by a successful "proof of concept" 18 hole RC drill program in late 2015.
Oxide gold mineralization is dominantly hosted in sandstone and conglomerate in the basal portion of the Eocene Claron Formation, along a regional unconformity that is virtually untested where it dips under shallow sedimentary and volcanic cover. The Claron Formation extends down dip of mineralized surface exposures, which are present throughout the northern half of the Goldstrike Property, an area covering approximately 42 km2. The entire area is considered prospective for gold mineralization. In addition to the exposures in the Historic Mine Trend, six other large windows to the northwest of the Historic Mine Trend expose the basal Claron Formation, and all contain drill-tested oxide gold mineralization. In particular, the Mineral Mountain area, located approximately 4 km north of the Historic Mine Trend and as described in the Report (as defined below), contains a current Inferred Resource of 41,144 ounces of gold, contained in 3.4 million tons of material grading 0.0122 ounces per ton (0.418 g/t) of gold. Additional drilling may expand the mineralized footprint of this zone, which is open in several directions, and is planned for 2016.
Gold is also present in Mississippian through Permian carbonate shelf strata immediately underlying the Claron Formation, where they constitute the principal host rocks in the westernmost two pits on the Historic Mine Trend. While these rocks are more typical of Carlin-style host rocks, and are exposed over the entire southern half of the property, they have not been extensively tested. The overall potential in these rocks is relatively unknown, but presumed to be significant.
(1) Previous mining data sourced from: Willden, R., 2006, Goldstrike Mining District, Washington County, Utah: in bon, R.L., Gloyn, R.W., and Park, G.M., eds., Mining Districts of Utah: Utah Geological Association Publication 32, p. 458-476.
Moira Smith, Ph.D., P.Geo., Vice-President Exploration and Geoscience, Pilot Gold, is the Company's designated Qualified Person for this news release within the meaning of National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects ("NI 43-101") and has reviewed and validated that the information contained in the release is accurate. Drill composites were calculated using a cut-off of 0.20 g/t. Drill intersections are reported as drilled thicknesses. True widths of the mineralized intervals are interpreted to be between 36-90% of the reported lengths. Drill samples were assayed by ALS Limited in Reno, Nevada for gold by Fire Assay of a 30 gram (1 assay ton) charge with an AA finish, or if over 5.0 g/t were re-assayed and completed with a gravimetric finish. For these samples, the gravimetric data were utilized in calculating gold intersections. For any samples assaying over 0.20 ppm an additional cyanide leach analysis is done where the sample is treated with a 0.25% NACN solution and rolled for an hour. An aliquot of the final leach solution is then centrifuged and analyzed by AAS. QA/QC for all drill samples consists of the insertion and continual monitoring of numerous standards and blanks into the sample stream, and the collection of duplicate samples at random intervals within each batch. Selected holes are also analyzed for a 51 multi-element geochemical suite by ICP-MS. ALS Geochemistry-Reno is ISO 17025:2005 Accredited, with the Elko prep lab listed on the scope of accreditation.
Goldstrike is an early-stage exploration project and, except for that which is noted below, does not contain any mineral resource estimates as defined by NI 43-101. The potential quantities and grades disclosed herein are conceptual in nature and there has been insufficient exploration to define a mineral resource for the targets disclosed herein. It is uncertain if further exploration will result in these targets being delineated as a mineral resource. A NI 43-101 technical report was prepared for a previous operator entitled, "Technical Report on the Mineral Mountain Property, Washington County, Utah, USA", dated February 16, 2010, was prepared by Kenneth P. Puchlik, of Puchski GeoConsultants (the "Report"). As at the date of the Report, Mr. Puchlik was a "Qualified Person" as defined by NI 43-101. The Report pertains to a small area in the northwestern part of the property, and does not extend to the Historical Mine Trend.