Columbus, Aquila/Hudbay and Evolving find gold in French Guiana, Michigan and Nevada
by Greg Klein
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To put some perspective on its Paul Isnard property in French Guiana, Columbus Gold TSXV:CGT likes to go back in time—roughly 225 million years. That’s before tectonic forces tore apart the planet’s one and only continent. The present-day Caribbean coast of South America was then joined to present-day northwestern Africa. Consequently there’s continuity, the company contends, between South America’s Guiana Shield and the Birimian Shield of gold-rich countries like Guinea, the Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso and Ghana. Thanks to that geology, Columbus has boosted its inferred resource by 184% to 5.37 million gold ounces.
As announced on February 5, the project’s Montagne d’Or resource update uses a low cutoff of 0.3 grams per tonne for a deposit starting at surface and reaching an average vertical depth of 247 metres. The company provided additional numbers for higher cutoff grades:
- with a 0.3 g/t cutoff, 117.1 million tonnes averaging 1.43 g/t for 5.37 million ounces
- with a 0.4 g/t cutoff, 111.2 million tonnes averaging 1.48 g/t for 5.3 million ounces
- with a 0.5 g/t cutoff, 101.9 million tonnes averaging 1.58 g/t for 5.17 million ounces
- with a 0.7 g/t cutoff, 81.7 million tonnes averaging 1.82 g/t for 4.78 million ounces
- with a 1 g/t cutoff, 58.1 million tonnes averaging 2.22 g/t for 4.15 million ounces.
The update uses a 16 g/t topcut as compared to the previous 1.89-million-ounce resource, which used a 30 g/t topcut and 0.4 g/t cutoff.
In a statement accompanying the announcement, Columbus chairman/CEO Robert Giustra said modelling “has also identified gaps within the deposit envelope where additional drilling has the potential to add ounces and where tighter drilling may upgrade some or all of the inferred resources to the indicated category. Additional expansion potential is also suggested by untested geochemical anomalies extending more than three kilometres along strike, by incompletely tested parallel zones of gold mineralization, and at depth.”
The 149-square-kilometre Paul Isnard project includes a 65-person camp with airstrip on a forest road connecting to a highway 115 kilometres from the port of St. Laurent.
Columbus shares opened February 5 at $0.355, seven cents above the previous close, and hit $0.425 before settling on a $0.365 close.
- measured and indicated resources of 987,236 gold ounces, 11.91 million silver ounces, 110.43 million copper pounds, 74.3 million lead pounds and 1.02 billion zinc pounds
- an inferred resource of 155,885 gold ounces, 1.99 million silver ounces, 18.65 million copper pounds, 17.21 million lead pounds and 113.33 million zinc pounds.
The estimate provides separate numbers for open pit and underground resources. The open pit estimate shows:
- measured and indicated resources of 640,663 gold ounces, 6.96 million silver ounces, 72.27 million copper pounds, 36.22 million lead pounds and 525.54 million zinc pounds.
The underground estimate shows:
- measured and indicated resources of 346,572 gold ounces, 4.95 million silver ounces, 38.16 million copper pounds, 38.07 million lead pounds and 496.13 million zinc pounds
- an inferred resource of 142,351 gold ounces, 1.82 million silver ounces, 18.02 million copper pounds, 15.9 million lead pounds and 103.7 million zinc pounds.
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