Seabridge Gold Inc TSX:SEA announced results from the Sulphurets Zone of its KSM Project in northwestern BC. Highlights include
1.03 g/t gold and 0.1% copper over 182 metres
0.96 g/t gold and 0.1% copper over 150 metres
0.93 g/t gold and 0.51% copper over 143 metres
0.74 g/t gold and 0.3% copper over 105 metres
0.8 g/t gold and 0.47% copper over 86.5 metres
0.38 g/t gold and 0.27% copper over 152 metres
1.57 g/t gold and 0.04% copper over 36.6 metres
President/CEO Rudi Fronk tells ResourceClips.com, “KSM is the largest undeveloped gold-copper project in the world today in terms of reserves. Contained within four separate deposits we have 38.5 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves and 10 billion pounds of copper reserves. We’ve completed a prefeasibility on it that shows a very viable and robust project at current and even lower metal prices.
“The drilling we’re doing this year at Sulphurets and Kerr—two of the four deposits—is infill drilling. It’s within the confines of the open pits that were defined in the prefeasibility study. The drill holes are designed to upgrade the inferred resources to measured and indicated, so they can then be upgraded to proven and probable reserves. At Sulphurets we’re targeting about 3 million ounces of inferred, which is right now calculated as waste in the prefeasibility study, and obviously the results we’re getting back are converting those tonnes upward.
KSM is the largest undeveloped gold-copper project in the world today in terms of reserves. We have 38.5 million ounces of proven and probable gold reserves and 10 billion pounds of copper reserves—Rudi Fronk
“Today’s results are better than what was expected. In addition to the inferred level, we’re also finding unclassified blocks that we’ll move up to higher categories as well. So I think our objective of 3 million ounces in addition to reserves is easily going to be achieved there.
“The next big step is to file for the formal applications for permits,” Fronk continues. “The work we did this summer on the engineering side was geared so we can finish those applications. We’re also now looking at the opportunity of perhaps going underground at Mitchell at some point. Mitchell is the largest of the four deposits—in fact it’s the largest gold deposit ever found in Canada. It now has more than a 40-year mine life on an open-pit basis, but there’s a lot of material down dip that is still there as resources. Our thought is, at some point in the Mitchell open-pit life, to move to a block cave to reduce the amount of strip you have to do, reduce the amount of tonnes considerably and continue going well beyond 40 years at Mitchell. We’ve engaged a consulting firm that’s very top-level in terms of block caving, and we did six deep holes here for geotechnical purposes at Mitchell this year. One of the holes intersected 810 metres of continuous mineralization from the surface.” Fronk adds, “This ore body is unbelievable.”
Regarding the project’s infrastructure, Fronk notes, “We’re fortunate, in terms of these big undeveloped projects in northern BC, that we’re the closest major project to the existing roads. We’re about 20 miles south of the old Eskay Creek mine that Barrick shut down a few years ago. We’re the closest major project to where they’re taking the northwest transmission line up Highway 37—so we can tie into the grid for very cheap power. And we’re the closest major project to the port of Stewart that provides year-round access to the Pacific Ocean on the Portland Canal.
“This is a project—of scale now—that really few companies in the world have the technical and financial capabilities to build. We’re not one of them. We’ve had a very open-door policy with the big gold mining and base metal companies over the last several years with a view to, at some point, partnering up. I’d say we’re getting close to that point now.” Fronk concludes, “We’ve done all the work that we should be doing, and it’s almost time to hand it over to a major in some sort of transaction. Our preferred structure is a joint venture, where we stay in the deal but they do all the heavy lifting going forward.”
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Rudi P. Fronk
by Greg Klein and Ted Niles