“Now that we have a positive pre-feasibility study, exploration to expand the existing resource in order to extend the mine life is one of our top priorities,” said Wallbridge’s CEO Marz Kord. “Drilling, Phase 2 of our exploration program, has commenced at Fenelon, while we continue to work on permitting and a production decision in the second quarter of the year.”
The exploration program at Fenelon is being carried out in three phases. Phase 1, which has been completed, consisted of a complete review of the mine geology including relogging and additional sampling of old drill holes, to better understand mine scale controls on gold mineralization, define the limits of ore grade mineralization and to allow optimization of the current Phase 2 drilling program.
Phase 1 exceeded expectations, resulting in the discovery of additional mineralized zones outside of the current resource (19.7 g/t Au over 1.90 m, including 89.3 g/t Au over 0.35 m) and in-fill sampling within the resource to better define the expected ore grade (8.37 g/t gold over 1.25 m, which together with historic assays forms part of an intersection of 20.17 g/t gold over 6.21 metres). Please refer to the press release dated December 5, 2016. Phase 1 also confirmed the presence of a number of high-quality targets in the immediate vicinity of the mine workings and the prefeasibility study mining project (Figure 1).
The Phase 2 Program has commenced and consists of approximately 2,000 metres of surface drilling designed to test targets in close proximity to the initial mining project. Proposed drill hole locations are shown as blue stars on Figure 1. The objective is to better define the targets for follow-up resource definition drilling from surface and underground early in the mine life. The proceeds from the recent FT Share financing will be used to complete Phase 2.
The Phase 3 Program will consist of both surface and underground drilling to further test these targets and move some of them into resources. Prioritization of targets for detailed drilling is somewhat contingent on results from Phase 2. A total of approximately 3,000 metres of surface drilling is currently planned. Underground drilling is to commence during the underground bulk sampling once dewatering of existing mine workings is completed. This program includes a planned 3,500 metre initial program.
Marz Kord, P. Eng. is the Qualified Person on behalf of Wallbridge and has approved the scientific and technical disclosures in this press release.
About Wallbridge Mining
Wallbridge is establishing a pipeline of projects that will support sustainable production and revenue as well as organic growth through exploration and scalability.
Wallbridge is currently preparing to develop its 100%-owned high-grade gold Fenelon Mine project in Quebec with a production decision targeted for Q2 2017. Wallbridge is also in discussions regarding several other advanced stage projects which could become the Company’s next mines. These discussions benefit from the operating capabilities Wallbridge demonstrated by safely and efficiently mining the Broken Hammer deposit in Sudbury, which was completed in October 2015.
Wallbridge is also continuing active partner-funded exploration on its large portfolio of nickel, copper, and PGM projects in Sudbury, Ontario. Currently, Wallbridge is completing a 20,000 metre fully partner-funded drilling program on its high-grade Parkin nickel-copper-PGM project.
Wallbridge also has exposure to active exploration for copper and gold in Jamaica and British Columbia through its 13% ownership of Carube Copper Corp. (“Carube Copper”) (CUC:TSX-V, formerly Miocene Resources Limited).