Mining Explorers 2017: Ascot Resources Ltd.
With its sights set on becoming the next gold producer in British Columbia’s Golden Triangle, Ascot Resources Ltd. carried out a roughly C$20 million exploration and development program at its Premier project that covers a large land package, including the historical Premier gold-silver mine. Premier and the company’s adjoining Dilworth property encompass more than 100 square kilometers of gold, silver and base metals deposits and prospects. The Premier property still has infrastructure from the Premier Mine – a past-producer of 2.1 million ounces of gold and 44.9 million oz silver – including mill, assay lab building, crusher, tailing storage area and underground development.
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Ascot is pusuing an extensive 2017 drill program that includes 120,000 meters of surface drilling aimed at establishing an initial 2-million- to 3-million-oz high-grade gold resource in the proposed Premier mine area and 20,000 meters of exploration drilling targeting high-grade areas in the northern portions of the property. Initial resource drilling targeted the Northern Lights zone, which is northwest of the historical mine areas at Premier. Highlights from drilling at Northern Lights include 12.13 meters of 10.4 grams per metric ton gold; and 7.5 meters of 9 g/t gold. Higher grade gold was tapped in a subzone of Northern Lights known as Ben. Highlighted intercepts from Ben include: 1.2 meters of 190.5 g/t gold, within a 30.57-meter interval averaging 8.57 g/t gold; and 1 meter of 99.6 g/t within a 6.5-meter intercept grading 17.3 g/t gold. An 11.9-meter intercept tapping a subzone below Ben cut 0.5 meter of 1,135 g/t gold within a 16.15-meter intercept averaging 36.31 g/t gold.
Ascot is also carrying out an underground program that includes rehabilitation of mine workings, as well as new development that will provide access to mineralized zones and establish underground drill stations. Roughly 27,000 meters of underground drilling aimed at defining reserves in the high-grade Lunchroom, Obscene and 602 zones are planned for this year. The company is seeking to establish an initial reserve of 600,000 to 750,000 oz of gold in these zones that could be mined in the near term. To support this goal, the 2017 program included engineering, environmental, and resource-reserve studies. It also undertook initial scoping and environmental studies.
In July, Ascot cut a deal to acquire full ownership of Premier from Boliden Ltd. for C$4.78 million. Boliden retains a 5 percent net smelter royalty on any future production at Premier. Ascot has the option to acquire this royalty for C$9.55 million.
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