Exploring for High Grade Copper and Precious Metals
This profile is part of a paid investor education campaign.*
Camino Minerals Corp. (TSXV:COR, OTCQB:CAMZF, FRANKFURT:XC01GR) is a Canadian resource company focused on acquiring, exploring and developing high-grade copper and precious metals in favorable jurisdictions. Camino’s flagship property is the Los Chapitos copper project located in the heart of the coastal Peruvian Iron Oxide Copper Gold belt.
This IOCG mineral belt is considered elephant country as it is responsible for several world-class deposits including the Mina Justa mine, located 100 kilometers northwest of Los Chapitos. Mina Justa hosts an estimated US$1.3 billion in copper reserves and was acquired by Minsur for US$590 million. (Mina Justa contains 6.2 billion pounds of copper worth roughly US$18 billion, not sure where your figures came from?)
Camino is targeting an open-pit operation at Los Chapitos that will include heap leach solvent extraction electrowinning (SX/EW), a hydrometallurgical process that uses dilute sulfuric acid to produce copper from oxidized ores. One of the key advantages of this process is its low capital requirements and its economic viability even at a smaller scale. According to the Copper Development Association, SX/EW is responsible for approximately 20 percent of all copper produced globally; in the Latin American region this figure is closer to 40 percent owing to the dry climate which readily lends itself to such a process.
Camino’s option in the Villa Hermosa gold project and the Plato Dorada copper-silver-gold project are also located in Peru. These early-stage projects both have potential for further exploration.
“Regionally, Peru is an excellent jurisdiction for copper and precious metals exploration,” said Ken McNaughton, President and CEO. “The country is the world’s six largest producer of gold, and the second largest producer for both copper and silver. Some of its mining districts host world-class deposits, and it has a stable, mining-friendly government with favorable mining and tax laws, so it checks all the boxes.”
The USGS reports that Peru has the most important mineral reserves in Latin America. The Fraser Institute Mining Survey lists Peru as the only country in the region that maintains sustained growth in the sector. Peru’s Ministry of Energy and Mines recently estimated that mining investments will grow by 20 percent in 2018 to reach more than US$5 billion.
Camino is led by an experienced management with the technical know-how to move a project ahead efficiently as well as a history of exploration success in Peru, including the discovery of the Berenguela deposit under Silver Standard Resources which was sold to Valor Resources in 2017 for $12 million and a 9.9 percent equity interest; and the discovery of the San Luis deposit still controlled by Silver Standard.
- Los Chapitos copper project in Peru’s IOCG belt and on trend with Mina Justa mine
- Amenable to low cost heap leach SX/EW processing
- Recently completed a private placement for gross proceeds of $1,516,060 to be used to fund step out drilling and general working capital.
- Villa Hermosa gold project and Plato Dorada copper-silver-gold project in Peru with blue sky potential
- Peru ranks as a favored mining jurisdiction in terms of resources, investment attractiveness and pro-mining policies
- Lost Cabin gold project in Oregon
- Highly experienced management and technical team with a track record of success in discovering and advancing projects, including in Peru
- Tight share structure with management holding a substantial position; President & CEO Ken McNaughton, majority shareholder at 11.5 percent; directors and management combined hold 18.5 percent
Flagship Property: Los Chapitos Copper Project, Peru
The Los Chapitos copper project is located just 15 kilometers from Peru’s coast and the Pan American Highway. The 14,000-hectare property is easily accessible year-round from the nearby the town of Chala, a hub for the region’s mining industry.
Los Chapitos is on the same trend as and shares similar geology with the Mina Justa mine, which contains 374 million tonnes grading 0.71 percent copper and 9 g/t silver. Recently acquired by Minsur, the property will be in construction in late 2018.
Historical mining of high-grade copper at Los Chapitos was carried out in the Atajo zone.
Surface sampling at Los Chapitos has initially identified three high-grade oxide copper zones along a six-kilometer-long trend: the Adriana, Katty and Vicky. Adriana lies six kilometers to the east of the Atajo zone.
Camino completed more than 16,000 meters of diamond drilling in 2017 at Los Chapitos, leading to significant new copper oxide discoveries at the Adriana and Katty zones. Since then, the company has conducted further step-out drilling in 2018, further expanding the Adriana zone and uncovering a new copper soil anomaly between the Katty and Vicky zones, Maria.
Highlights from drilling at the recently discovered Adriana zone included intersections of:
- 0.72 percent copper over 168.5 meters, including 1.63 percent copper over 27 meters
- 0.93 percent copper over 96.5 meters, including 2.03 percent copper over 19.5 meters
- 1.43 percent copper over 74 meters, including 2.19 percent copper over 31.9 meters; and
- 0.85 percent copper over 95 meters, including 3.19 percent copper over 6.2 meters.
Highlights from drilling at the Katty zone included intersections of:
- 0.7 percent copper over 43.5 meters, including 1.85 percent copper over 5.6 meters; and
- 1.2 percent copper over 21.4 meters, including 2.7 percent copper over 7.9 meters.
These drill samples were re-analyzed using a sequential leach to determine the total soluble copper values, including values from both oxide copper and secondary copper sulphide minerals. Results comparing the acid soluble to the total soluble copper values can be found here.
“This reanalysis found that the average soluble copper values more than doubled over the previously reported oxide copper values,” according to the company news release. “For intervals specifically within the high grade Diva Structure, the average soluble copper increased by over 500 percent. This is significant as the mineralization in the Diva Structure could potentially be processed either by heap leach producing cathode copper or by conventional milling producing a copper concentrate.”
As the company continues to see potential along the Diva structure, it will continue exploration work in the form of a regional soil sampling program.
The 2018 work program will also include scoping level metallurgical studies completed on samples from the Adriana and Katty as well as filing permit applications for initial resource delineation drilling.
Villa Hermosa Gold Project, Peru
In May 2018, Camino—through its subsidiary, Minquest Peru—singed an option agreement under which it can acquire a 100 percent interest in the Villa Hermosa project owned by the Companie Minera Villa Hermosa. Under the agreement, the company will be making staged payments across five years so as to obtain 100 percent of the property.
The project sits 150 kilometers east of Trujillo and is made up of two claims that total 400 hectares. It is located in a region that hosts a number of large gold mines, including the nearby Parcoy mine, owned by Consorcio Minera Horizonte, currently producing 250,000 ounces of gold annually. It is also near the Retamas mine, which has an annual production rate of 180,000 ounces of gold and is owned by the Minera Aurifera Retamas.
The Villa Hermosa project hosts orogenic veins that average 0.6 meters in width, akin to deposits found in Northern Ontario, Quebec and Western Australia. Due diligence sampling at the Villa Hermosa veins showed average values of 28.9 g/t gold, and assays from stock work on the margins of these veins showed up to 4.2 g/t gold over 1.29 meters. The property has yet to see modern exploration work.
Vendors at the project have been transporting up to 20 tonnes of hand-sorted ore per month, which is being mined from four veins on the property. This ore grades between 40 and 125 g/t gold and the waste rock runs between seven and 10 g/t gold.
The company’s initial work on the property will focus on sampling and trenching along the existing veins while also prospecting for additional veins.
Plata Dorada Copper-Gold-Silver Project, Peru
The Plata Dorada project is located 158 kilometers east of the city of Cuszco, Peru. The 1,800-hectare project hosts significantly high-grade silver and copper with gold in massive sulphide veins. Artisanal mining at Plata Dorado dates back to the 18th century, and numerous pits and shallow underground workings are present on the property from more recent artisanal activity.
Mineralization in structurally hosted, polymetallic quartz-sulphide veins averaging 0.5 meters to 1.5 meters in width have been mapped in zones: North and South. Chip samples have returned values ranging from 0.3 percent to 8.7 percent copper, 70 gpt to more than 1,500 g/t silver, and trace to 2.1 g/t gold. The veins are well-exposed and drill-ready. Camino believes there is good potential to discover additional veins at Plata Dorada.
Lost Cabin Gold Project, Oregon
The Lost Cabin gold project is located in southcentral Oregon and hosts a high-grade epithermal gold system exposed at surface with the potential to host a high-grade gold system at shallow depths. Grab sampling has assayed at grades up to 38 g/t gold.
The project is fully-permitted and drill-ready with high-grade gold drill targets already defined.
Kenneth C. McNaughton, President, CEO and Director
Kenneth McNaughton is a professional geological engineer with over 30 years of global experience developing and leading mineral exploration programs. He joined Pretivm Resources Inc. in 2011 as Vice President & Chief Exploration Officer. Prior to that, he was Senior Vice President, Exploration for Silver Standard Resources Inc. For almost 20 years he had been responsible for all exploration, as well as early stage metallurgical and engineering programs for Silver Standard and Canplats Resources. Prior to joining Silver Standard, he worked for Corona Corporation and its affiliate Mascot Gold Mines Ltd. as a project geologist and engineer for projects in British Columbia. Mr. McNaughton holds a Bachelor of Applied Science degree and a Master of Applied Science degree in geological engineering from the University of Windsor, and is a registered member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia.
Ken Konkin, General Manager Exploration Peru
Ken Konkin is a professional geologist who has managed precious and base metal exploration programs for 30 years throughout North America, South America and Russia. He has extensive geological experience in the British Columbia, Mexico, and Peru. Most recently, he was the project manager for the surface exploration programs at the Brucejack/Snowfield Projects for Pretivm. He also managed numerous grass roots through advanced stage projects for Silver Standard Resources, including Manatial Espejo in Argentina, San Agustin in Mexico, San Luis and Berenguela in Peru. Mr. Konkin holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of British Columbia.
Perry Durning, Consultant
Perry Durning has been active in mineral exploration for over 43 years. He graduated with a B.Sc. in geology from San Diego State University and a M.Sc. in Economic Geology from the University of Arizona. Mr. Durning has worked extensively throughout the western U.S.A., Mexico and Central and South America. During his career he worked for Amax Exploration, SAGE Associates and Occidental Minerals, before becoming Exploration Manager and then President of Fischer-Watt Gold Co., Inc. Mr. Durning cofounded La Cuesta International, Inc. in 1993 and has worked primarily in Mexico since that time. Much of his career has focused on grassroots exploration in pioneering areas. Mr. Durning and Mr. Hillemeyer were selected by the PDAC as the 2010 co-award winners of the Thayer Lindsley Award in recognition for La Cuesta’s multiple grassroots discoveries in Mexico.
F. L. “Bud” Hillemeyer, Consultant
Bud Hillemeyer has been actively involved in mineral exploration in the United States and Latin America for more than 27 years. Mr. Hillemeyer has conducted extensive exploration programs in the western U.S., Mexico, Honduras and Costa Rica. He graduated from the University of California at Berkeley with a B.A. in Geology and from San Diego State University with a M.Sc. in Geology. Mr. Hillemeyer co-founded La Cuesta International, Inc. in 1993 and has worked with an extensive array of clients including Kennecott, Meridian Gold, BHP, MIM, Hecla Mining, Crown Resources, Monarch Resources, Silver Standard Resources, Canplats Resources and others. Mr. Hillemeyer was recognized for his success in mineral exploration as the co-recipient of the 2010 Thayer Lindsley Award for an international mineral discovery. The award recognized Mr. Hillemeyer and his partner, Perry Durning, for their grassroots discoveries in Mexico including the San Sebastián, San Agustin, Pitarrilla and Camino Rojo projects.
Guillermo Lozano-Chavez, Director
Guillermo Lozano is a Professional Geologist with over 35 years of experience in mineral exploration in Latin America; He was Vice President of Exploration for First Majestic Silver Corp., where he was responsible for all exploration programs in and around five operating mines. Before joining First majestic Silver, he was Director of Exploration for Silver Standard Resources Inc., where he managed their Mexico exploration and overviewed their Peruvian and Argentinian exploration activities from 2002 through 2012. Prior to coming to Silver Standard, he worked as a consultant for several international companies in Mexico, Central and South America, He started his career working for Penoles Group as an exploration geologist and mine manager. Mr. Lozano holds a Bachelor of Science in Geological Engineering from the National Polytechnical Institute of Mexico City, a Master of Science degree in Geology from the University of Missouri at Columbia, and a Master of Business Administration in Finance from the University of Texas at El Paso.
Peter de Visser, Director
Peter de Visser CA., recently retired as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Pretivm and was also the CFO of Camino Resources Ltd. Prior to that he was the managing and founding partner of De Visser Gray Chartered Accountants LLC. of Vancouver BC.
R.E. Gordon Davis, Director
Gordon Davis was the Chairman and CEO of Canplats, and is currently a director of Pacific Ridge Explorations Ltd. and Strategic Metals Ltd. Prior to this he was a director and senior executive with Dynasty Explorations Ltd. and its successor corporation, Cyprus Anvil Mining Corporation. Additionally, he has served as a director of Cabre Exploration, Pine Point Mines, Golden Knight Resources and Silver Standard. Mr. Davis is a geological engineer and graduated with a Bachelor of Applied Science degree in Geological Engineering from the University of British Columbia in 1962.
Olav Langelaar, Director
Olav Langelaar is currently a Managing Director at Primary Capital Inc, a privately owned exempt market dealer with offices in Toronto and Vancouver. He previously served as a Director, for Dundee Securities Investment Banking from 2007 to 2011. Prior to that he had international industry experience, including roles with Ospraie Gold and Amerigo Resources (VP Corporate Development), Placer Dome (Manager of Corporate Finance and Insurance), Cameco, Cominco, and Agrium (Engineer, Maintenance and Construction). Mr. Langelaar has in excess of 25 years’ experience in the Canadian capital markets with specific expertise in mining operations and investment banking. He earned his Bachelor of Applied Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Waterloo, and an MBA from the Richard Ivey School of Business. He is also a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia.
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