Lumina Gold Corp. [LUM-TSXV, LMGDF-OTCQX] said Tuesday January 29 that drilling at its 100%-owned Cangrejos gold-copper project in southwest Ecuador has resulted in the discovery of a second deposit.
The existence of the Gran Bestia deposit was confirmed in the most recent results from a 2018 drilling program comprised of 12,800 metres in 32 holes.The results from eight holes include three that targeted Gran Bestia. Those drill holes, in addition to five holes previously drilled by Newmont Mining Corp. [NEM-NYSE] confirm the existence of a satellite deposit that is not included in the current NI 43-101-compliant resource estimate at Cangrejos.
One of the three Gran Besita holes (C18-100) returned a 262 intersection averaging 0.44 g/t gold and 0.12% copper. Another (C18-98) returned 124 metres of 0.27 g/t gold and 0.04% copper.
“The addition of Gran Bestia to Cangrejos is significant and could substantially increase the current inferred mineral resource estimate of 8.5 million ounces of gold,” the company said in a press release, Tuesday. The inferred mineral resource estimate has an average grade of 0.65 g/t gold. The inferred resource also includes 1.0 billion pounds of copper at a grade of 0.11%.
The deposit has the potential to add to the 16-year mine life, increase the 373,000 ounces of annual gold production or improve both, the company said. “Additional drilling through the first half of 2019 will further enhance our understanding of the satellite deposit,” said Lumina President and CEO Marshall Koval.
Lumina Gold shares advanced on the news, rising 1.79% or $0.01 to 57 cents. The 52-week range is 46 cents and 85 cents.
The Cangrejos Project covers 6,374 hectares in the Andean foothills and is located in El Oro province, 30 km southeast of the provincial capital of Machala and the Pan American Highway. It is also situated 40 km from the deep water commercial port of Puerto Bolivar. The property is accessible via paved and 8 km of gravel roads.
Two drill rigs are currently operating at Cangrejos, with two more expected to arrive on site in February. This year, Lumina plans to drill approximately 7,000 metres in 23 holes for resource infill and exploration at the Cangrejos. It is also planning for 5,200 metres in 13 holes at the Gran Bestia deposit.
Lumina said it intends to release an updated resource estimate in the second half of 2019 that will incorporate all of the 2018 and 2019 drilling. The resource estimate will feature a maiden resource at the Gran Bestia deposit, as well as an updated resource for the Cangrejos deposit, which will incorporate both expansion and infill drilling.
In addition, a significant drilling program to provide metallurgical test materials and oriented core for engineering studies is also planned for 2019.