Shareholders in Brigadier Gold (TSX-V:BRG) are expecting big things from a September drill program at the company’s Picachos gold-silver project in Mexico. Investors bid up the stock 4.9% on Wednesday, following an Aug. 13 announcement that preparations are underway for diamond drill campaign, focused on the San Agustín former mine site.
A minimum 5,000 meters is planned for the start of September, in approximately 40 holes targeting four high-grade gold-silver veins. The drill holes are expected to be between 90m and 300m long.
Along with San Agustín, the first-ever drill program at Picachos will zero in on the Mochomos vein, where a historic rock chip channel sample yielded 18.5 grams per tonne gold (Au) and 570 g/t silver (Ag) over half a meter; the Los Tejones vein with values of 28.6 g/t Au and 114 g/t Ag across a meter; and the Fermin vein, which sampled 268 parts per million (ppm) Ag and 0.3 g/t Au over 1m.
According to the news release,
The Company’s focus is proving the potential for high-grade gold-silver veins that will likely be developed using underground mining methods…
San Agustín is the best understood of these veins, mainly because it has been historically exposed underground by approximately 670 line meters of tunnels, stopes and shafts. Geologically, it appears to be disrupted by the NW trending Genardo Fault. On the northeast side of the fault, the Tejones veins might correlate to San Agustín. Collectively, this first round of drilling is designed to test approximately 1 kilometer of vein strike between the past-producing San Agustín Mine and the Tejones Prospects.
Phase 1 is anticipated to total 5,170m of PQ/HQ diamond drilling in 41 drill holes as well as approximately 3 line kilometers of trenching across several historic sample sites to systematically sample the anomalies identified by the historic work and formalize the drill targets.
Earlier this month Brigadier Gold signed an option agreement to acquire a 100% interest in the Picachos gold-silver property in Sinaloa State.
The project features over 150 historic mines and underground workings, high-grade veins open at depth, and it is road accessible, with drill permits and agreements with the local community already in place.
Primary targets include under-explored gold veins at the past-producing San Agustín mine, and La Gloria, a historic mine with rock samples containing 21.1 grams per tonne gold and 6 g/t silver across 0.8m.
Under the option agreement, to earn full own ownership Brigadier must make a series of cash payments, issue 4 million shares within five years, and spend $3.85 million exploring the property.
The company will also issue the vendor a million shares upon delineating a minimum mineral resource of 325,000 gold ounces in the inferred category, pay $725,000 plus another million shares after completing a feasibility study, and $2 million upon commercial production.
“Closing the Picachos acquisition marks our official entry into the Sierra Madre epithermal belt, which has seen tremendous drilling success from neighboring exploration companies,” CEO Ranjeet Sundher said in a media statement.
“We’re attracted by the fact that there’s a 7-km strike length of high-grade gold and silver values, lots of historical workings, so number 1 we know there’s high-grade gold and silver on the project, number 2 we know it’s the right depth, because of the previous mining operations, but the most important thing is it’s never been drill-tested, so there’s lots of upside potential and we know exactly where to start,” Sundher told AOTH in a recent video interview.
Comprising four mining concessions, Picachos hosts two precious metal vein systems and a large porphyry copper prospect. It overlaps part of the western foothills of the Sierra Madre Occidental, one of the world’s largest silicic igneous provinces. Regional geochemical work at the turn of the millennium highlighted the reserve as one of the largest contiguous anomalies for gold and base metals in southern Sinaloa and northern Nayarit.
It sits on one of the largest, most contiguous and highest amplitude anomalies for gold, silver and base metal in regional fine-fraction stream sediment samples in the Western Sierra Madre, with values up to 6,841 parts per billion (ppb) gold in fine-fraction, active channel stream sediments, according to the Mexican Geological Service (SGS), which staked and explored it in the 1980s.
Two companies operating in the Sierra Nevada region, Vizsla Resources (TSX-V:VZLA) and GR Silver Mining (TSX-V:GRSL), have seen their shares double and triple on bonanza-grade gold and silver discoveries, sending their market caps well above $100 million.
Picachos is equidistant (15 miles away) between them, on the same trend.
At the San Agustín mine, about 665 meters of underground development has been completed. Underground sampling by a previous operator returned an average 81.22 g/t Au and 73.36 Ag across 1.2m. Values from the bottom of a 45-meter-deep production shaft were 185 g/t Au. In 2014, Vane Minerals test-mined three rounds from the south face. Average assay values were 15.8 g/t Au and 63 g/t Ag across a width of 2.5 m. The veins are open at depth and have never been drill-tested.
The La Gloria mine was developed on one of many exposed northwest-trending veins. Gold mineralization occurs in a structural zone characterized by 10-20% red chalcedonic quartz hematite veinlets that contain minor bright green zinc-copper oxides and hematite stain.
Picachos is about a four-hour drive from Mazatlán via state highway and paved road to the town of Cacalotán, then by country road into the property. Mine workings are accessed from about 20 kilometers of roads within the project’s boundaries.
“This is a project we can actually go to work with permits, good grades, infrastructure, and get the drill bit turning very soon,” Sundher says. “As of today the water is at the camp, the communications are at the camp, the drill contracts are signed, the drill targets are chosen, and within two to three weeks the drills will be turning on a 5,000m, 40-hole drill program. So as an investor you can expect a steady flow of news over the next three to four months.”
Heading the drill program is Michelle Robinson, a Canadian geologist well-known in the Mexican mining community. Robinson, P.Eng, has detailed knowledge of the property, having assembled it some time ago. She is a member of working groups organized by the Mexican Mining Chamber (CAMIMEX), speaks fluent Spanish, and is a Qualified Person as defined by NI 43-101, a Canadian mineral resource classification scheme used to disclose information about exploration properties. Robinson has authored more than 20 technical reports and has published several papers for the Society of Economic Geologists.
“We’re fortunate that her baby, Picachos, which she’s nurtured for 10 years, is still under her management,” says Sundher. “She knows the secrets of the asset, the complexities, how to develop it, and we agree with her. She’s on site and she will run the project and we trust her implicitly.”
In only 30 days, newly listed Brigadier Gold has managed to raise $4.2 million – which is extraordinary for a junior of its size, just $18 million market cap – and is moving quickly to drill Picachos by early fall.
The story is still largely undiscovered, leaving plenty of upside potential.
Shares Outstanding 56,303,865m
Market cap Cdn$18m
Richard (Rick) Mills
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