Saturday 1st October 2016

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North ROK euphoria fizzles

Colorado Resources’ results fall short of phenomenal but the area play looks resilient

by Greg Klein

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Despite additional intercepts of wide mineralization, June 6 assays from Colorado Resources TSXV:CXO failed to meet soaring hopes set by North ROK’s very first hole. That northwestern British Columbia discovery excited anticipation of a project comparable to Imperial Metals’ TSX:III Red Chris project, 15 kilometres east. But while Colorado’s stock has since suffered, a still-strong market cap and recent activity by other companies suggest the area play may yet endure.

The June 6 announcement gave results for three holes, with NR13-003 showing:

  • 0.21% copper and 0.55 grams per tonne gold over 152.4 metres, starting at 1.2 metres in downhole depth
  • (including 0.31% copper and 1.04 g/t gold over 52 metres).

NR13-003 was drilled at a -80 degree dip towards the northeast from the same location as discovery hole NR13-001, which was sunk at a -45 degree dip in the same direction. NR13-004 was drilled 100 metres southeast of the discovery hole, showing:

  • 0.4% copper and 0.5 g/t gold over 205.2 metres, starting at 158.8 metres
  • (including 0.56% copper and 0.68 g/t gold over 131 metres).
Colorado Resources’ results fall short of phenom, but area play looks resilient

North ROK’s first assays suggested boundless horizons, but three more holes from the early-stage project stifled enthusiasm.

True widths weren’t available. Hole NR13-002, drilled 350 metres west of the discovery hole, found no significant results. The company stated it “may have not been drilled deep enough or at the correct azimuth to adequately test the IP chargeability anomaly that is now better understood with the new detailed geophysics.”

Ongoing induced polarization surveys have so far shown an area 1,200 by 1,200 metres open to the south of the chargeability anomaly where the holes were drilled. The survey also found an area 500 by 1,000 metres open to the north of another chargeability anomaly one kilometre north of the drill holes. “To date less than 5% of the area of these geophysical anomalies has been tested by drilling,” the company stated. “Given these highly encouraging results and better understanding of the system, Colorado is planning an expanded drill program to commence shortly.”

Evidently investors expected better. The discovery hole reported April 25 produced a market-shattering 0.51% copper and 0.67 g/t gold over 333 metres, starting at 2 metres. That included a 242-metre interval of 0.63% copper and 0.85 g/t gold.

All that from the very first hole. Fuelling the excitement was Red Chris, only 15 kilometres away, where Imperial Metals’ open pit is scheduled for production in mid-2014. The project boasts reserves of 301 million tonnes averaging 0.359% copper and 0.274 g/t gold.

Consequently North ROK rocketed Colorado stock from an April 24 close of $0.16 to a May 21 high of $1.74. But by June 6 the shares opened on $1.17, down from a June 5 high of $1.34, then continued to fall. The stock closed June 6 on $0.80, albeit an improvement over the day’s low of $0.66 and far above the pre-discovery $0.16.

Disappointment notwithstanding, the area play may yet have a busy summer in store. Other companies attracted by the region’s porphyry copper-gold potential include Entourage Metals TSXV:EMT, which on June 3 announced its 100% option on the 6,499-hectare Odin copper-gold property, 22 kilometres north of North ROK and 35 kilometres from Red Chris.

The same day Victory Ventures TSXV:VVN announced drilling had begun on its 448-hectare Copau property, 11 kilometres northeast of Red Chris, to test a prospective IP anomaly.

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