Ridgemont Iron Ore Corp TSXV:RDG in joint venture with Logan Resources Ltd TSXV:LGR announced results from their Redford Iron Ore Property on Vancouver Island, BC. Assays include
43.4% iron over 49 metres
52.3% over 31 metres
51.5% over 26 metres
56.6% over 21 metres
50.8% over 23 metres
55.5% over 20 metres
60.2% over 13 metres
49.2% over 12 metres
Under a July 2010 option agreement, Ridgemont may acquire up to a 75% interest in the project. To earn the initial 50%, Ridgemont has paid Logan $75,000 and must pay Logan an additional $50,000 a year and issue the company 100,000 shares a year for three years, as well as spend $3 million on exploration. To earn the additional 25%, Ridgemont must pay all costs needed to make a production decision and arrange for any necessary financing to achieve production.
Noranda mined the property during the 1960s, producing 4.48 million tonnes grading 56% iron. Ridgemont is backed by The Exploration Group, which provides management, geological, regulatory, tax and IR services and by Forbes & Manhattan, the merchant bank that helped steer Consolidated Thompson through the 2008 crisis.
Jim Crawford, VP of Corporate Development for The Exploration Group, tells ResourceClips.com, “The grades reported yesterday are quite strong and they consistently follow what we expected from the project, in the mid- to high fifties, and there’ll be minor beneficiation on the ore to push it to 62%. That’s one of the things that attracted us to the project.
The key to this project is to keep it as simple as possible. We’re not trying to advance the science of mining; we’re just sticking with the tried and true—Jim Crawford
“We’re at phase I of the earn-in. Once we get this drill program done and get our initial resource estimate, there’ll be a decision whether to go for the full 75% ownership. We’ve drilled out 7,500 metres of the 2011 program. We’re aiming for 13,000 metres in this program, 10,000 on the body itself and another 3,000 is earmarked for the property’s geophysical targets. Whether they get to that 3,000 this year is uncertain. It’s been raining quite heavily there.
“We’re drilling beyond Noranda’s operation,” Crawford points out. “They continue to get good intersections with strong iron up to 400 metres east of the eastern-most end of the Noranda pit. So they’ve extended the historic data quite a bit. They’re aiming for a resource estimate early in 2012. That initial resource will tell us what we need to do next.
“Another thing that attracted us to the project is the underground potential, if it should unfold that way,” he adds. “There are certain environmental issues that are attractive. That should help permitting because you won’t have that scar on the landscape, although the old pit is still there. There are environmental issues that an underground operation helps with.
“Transportation and infrastructure also make this project very attractive. BC Highway 4 goes right by the project, the power grid comes down the same valley, we’re less than five kilometres from a potential deep-water port where you can load cape-size vessels and then we’re on the west coast of the continent so the sailing time to Asian markets is half what it is from the east. There’s a lot of these big-ticket items that make the project so attractive.
“We’re thinking about moving ore to the port by conveyor belt. It’s a bulk commodity, and nothing moves bulk commodities as simply as conveyors. The key to this project is to keep it as simple as possible. We’re not trying to advance the science of mining; we’re just sticking with the tried and true.
“The markets have been volatile lately, but the long-term outlook looks like a constant increase in the Chinese market, the Indian market and so on. So the demand for iron is definitely there.”
Ridgemont’s management team includes people with extensive experience in Consolidated Thompson Iron Mines TSX:CLM, the Iron Ore Company of Canada and Alderon Resource TSXV:ADV.
“The Exploration Group brings a lot of leverage to a small company like this,” Crawford adds. “You can attract people of Brian Penney’s stature [Penny will become Ridgemont President/CEO December 1], Mark Morabito [currently President/CEO, Morabito will become Executive Chairman December 1], all that Alderon experience. It’s actually a really good marriage.”
Crawford concludes, “It’s a nice, attractive project, and a lot of the big-ticket items with respect to infrastructure are lining up. It’s a past producer, too. So as we move forward, it’s just a matter of finding out what Mother Nature has to tell us.”
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by Greg Klein