Maritime Resources Corp. [MAE-TSXV] on Wednesday June 2 said it has initiated a fully-financed exploration program at its Hammerdown gold project in the Baie Verte mining district on the island of Newfoundland.
The company said exploration activities are underway with two drills exploring along the highly prospective Hammerdown Deformation Zone, and will work outwards to new high priority targets through 2021 and 2022.
In that time, the company is planning for 40,000 metres of exploration drilling and additional geophysical surveys. The program will include 30,000 metres of drilling near the Hammerdown and Orion gold deposits targeting resource expansion in and around the proposed open pit and underground workings outlined in a preliminary economic assessment that was announced back in February, 2020.
The company said 10,000 metres has been allocated to drill test several new regional targets, including Whiskey Valley and Gull Ridge where high grade gold and copper mineralization was encountered during 2020.
Maritime shares advanced on the news, rising 2.3% or $0.005 to 22 cents in active trading of 277,570. The shares are trading in a 52-week range of 23.5 cents and $0.08.
Maritime Resources holds a 100% interest in the Green Bay property near Springdale Newfoundland and Labrador. The property hosts the past-producing Hammerdown gold mine, the Orion gold deposit, and Lochinvar precious metals deposit.
Rambler Metals and Mining Plc. [RMM-AIM] has a strategic investment in the Hammerdown gold mine, held through a 17% equity stake in Maritime Resources, and is sharing its technical expertise with Maritime as it assesses the merits of restarting the Hammerdown mine. Rambler’s key asset is a 100% ownership of the Ming copper-gold mine, an operating base and precious metals processing facility and year-round bulk storage facility located in Baie Verte peninsula in Newfoundland.
The Hammerdown Mine was last operated by Richmont Mines between 2000 and 2003, producing 143,000 ounces of gold at an average grade of 15.7 g/t through a combination of narrow vein, open pit and underground mining. The ore was processed at the Nugget Pond mill, now owned and operated by Rambler Metals. Richmont was acquired by Alamos Gold Inc. [AGI-TSX, NYSE] in November, 2017.
Mining concluded in 2004 due to low gold prices with mineralization remaining, although uneconomic at the time.
Back in March, 2020, Maritime released the results of a preliminary economic assessment for the Hammerdown gold project, including the satellite Orion deposit.
The PEA provides an updated resource estimate and a base case assessment of developing the project as a combined open pit and underground ramp access mine with an on-site gold pre-concentration plant and mineral processing through the Nugget Pond mill gold circuit.
Highlights from the PEA include life of mine total gold production of 521,500 ounces averaging 57,900 ounces annually. Life-of-mine cash costs are estimated at US$802.55/oz with an all-in-sustaining costs pegged at US$938.80/oz.