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Rugby’s Soil Sampling Defines Gold-Silver Geochemical Anomalies

Rugby Mining Limited, a mineral exploration company, is happy to report the outcomes of a soil sampling program that was recently concluded on the El Zanjon gold-silver project located in Santa Cruz province in Argentina.

Deseado Massif gold-silver district and El Zanjon project location. Image Credit: Rugby Mining Limited.

Rugby Mining initiated the soil sampling program as a follow-up to ground magnetic surveys that had delineated potential structures for hosting the epithermal mineralization of gold and silver that are typical of the Deseado Massif. The encouraging host rocks underlie the new sediments that have a thickness of up to 100 m.


  • The geochemical program includes nearly 108 surface samples obtained at spaced intervals of 320 m across 35-line km.
  • Using the ultra-sensitive Ionic Leach by ALS at Vancouver, the collected samples were assayed for 61 multi-elements. This technique was employed to detect metal zonation within, as well as the haloes, enclosing the mineralization.
  • While gold values spanned from 0.02 to 0.96 ppb, silver values spanned from 11 to 30.1 ppb.
  • A total of 10 zones of anomalous gold-silver geochemistry were successfully defined, spanning to a length of 320 to 2,800 m.
  • Some of these anomalies have coinciding lower pH readings, indicating an acidic setting, which, in turn, can denote oxidation from sulfides at depth—a link common to other epithermal projects based in Patagonia.
  • Further, in-fill geochemical sampling was suggested.

Project Location

The El Zanjon gold-silver project extends to about 600 km2 close to the world-class mines located at Cerro Moro (Yamana), Cerro Vanguardia (AngloGold Ashanti), and Cerro Negro (Newmont-Goldcorp).

We are very encouraged by these early results and plan more detailed follow-up sampling in the southern spring when the weather is more favourable. Searching for gold below recent sediments represents a challenge yet this approach is showing considerable promise.

Bryce Roxburgh, Chief Executive Officer, Rugby Mining Limited

Roxburgh continued, “Our exploration team comprises members from the Extorre technical group responsible for the discovery of the high-grade Cerro Moro mine. Argentina, like most countries, is currently subject to lockdown due to the COVID-19 virus, but we hope that we will be in a position to work in several months.”

Sampling Methodology

  • Based on ALS laboratory sampling instructions, the collected soils were sampled.
  • With the help of a portable Garmin eTrex® 20, all the site locations were captured as WGS84, UTM Northing and Easting coordinates Zone 19.
  • Samples were obtained from 10 to 20 cm beneath the surface.
  • A sample weighing 120 g was obtained and transferred to a Ziplock plastic bag with the sample number eternally labeled on the bag.
  • To remove most of the air, the Ziplock plastic bag was folded over, sealed, and subsequently transferred to another plastic bag again to remove maximum amounts of air before sealing.
  • Only wooden and plastic implements were utilized, and jewelry was completely removed.
  • All the collected 108 samples were transferred to plastic boxes and sent to Vancouver-based ALS for Ionic Leach analysis by ME-MS23™ technique. ALS are certified ISO/IEC 17025:2017 and ISO 9001:2015
  • The analysis included a total of 10 laboratory duplicate samples

Data Analysis

  • The resultant geochemical data were added to the project’s database for geochemical mapping, geostatistical analysis, and determination of correlation.
  • The dataset of all the 108 assays was filtered by soil type and arranged in Tertiary (TR) or Sand and Gravel (SG) to assess them separately.
  • Using Discover software, geostatistics were computed for the sub-dataset Au, Ag, As, Sr, Pb, Mo, Hg, Fe, Cu, and Cd.
  • The percentiles were subsequently utilized to prepare precise geochemical thematic maps with the aim of differentiating the anomalies.

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