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Bold gold run continues with big Turaco hit


Bulls N’ Bears takes a look at the big drill hits of the past week from ASX-listed companies.

In case you are living under a rock that has not yet been turned over by a diligent explorer, you will know that gold is still basking in the warmth of a powerful pricing period.


Last week’s Big Hits column was dominated by gold explorers turning up plenty of the precious yellow metal and this week’s edition is much the same as the gold price remains close to record highs.


But amid the glittering gold, Venture Minerals also continued a record-breaking spree of its own, with its longest rare earths hit to date from its Jupiter prospect in Western Australia’s Mid West region.


Let’s dive in…



Afema project – Cote d’Ivoire, North-West Africa


Hit: 105m at 1.61g/t gold from 135m.


Turaco sparked attention on an otherwise quiet Monday a week ago, with a long run of diamond drill core intercepting 105m assaying 1.61 grams per tonne gold from 135m depth at its Woulo Woulo deposit within the company’s recently-acquired Afema project, 120km east of Côte d’Ivoire’s economic capital, Abidjan.


The current program is seeking to extend mineralisation defined by mostly shallow drilling to support a move to generating the earliest possible maiden resource estimate. The first four reverse-circulation (RC) holes targeted shallow mineralisation, up-dip from previous intercepts, while two RC holes with diamond tails focused on depth extensions below historic intercepts.


The headline hole is a step-back – the first of the most recent suite of six holes put into Woulo Woulo targeting gold extensions at the deposit and which all delivered results described by Turaco as “outstanding”. The hole became the deepest drilled and produced the best-ever intercept, with the deposit’s widest and highest gram.metre value intercept.


It passed almost fully through the interpreted near-vertical and about up to at least 60m true thickness of the mineralised zone under two historic RC holes and one diamond hole – all of which report intercepts of 39m, 63m and 58m and exhibit average grades of 1.19g/t gold, 1.11g/t and 1.14g/t, respectively.


The 105m run extended interpretable mineralisation down a further 50m to 100m vertically and confirmed a near 40 per cent increase in true width of the mineralised zone when compared with the width identified in the three higher holes.


Additionally, the uppermost 34m (from 135m) in the headline intercept averaged 3.19g/t gold and while the long run was terminated prematurely at 260m depth due to poor drilling conditions, it ended in favourable alteration and mineralisation, with the last 4m averaging 1.18g/t gold, close to the likely eastern margin of the mineralised zone.


Woulo Woulo has been subject to previous shallow drilling, averaging about 120m depth, which defined gold mineralisation from surface along 2.9km of strike that remains open. About 250,000m of drilling and more than US$40 million ($AU60.6 million) has been spent within the Afema mining permit.


Turaco acquired an initial 51 per cent interest in Afema from multinational Endeavour Mining last November. It now has two drill rigs operating.



Turaco Gold’s Afema Project has many examples of artisanal mining, with some wall sampling returning grades up to 4.08g/t gold.


Revere project – 90km north-east of Meekatharra, Western Australia


Hit: 1m at 97g/t gold from 8m


Everest last week came up with several intriguing drill results in a more unusual setting and with an acquisition method we do not hear of every day.


The company’s latest work included high-grade gold finds stretching to 97 grams per tonne in a 1m hit from just 8m after it rolled out drill and blast works at its Revere gold and base metals project in WA’s Mid West region.


To people with more of an open pit mining background, using blast holes for in-pit grade control is not uncommon. In this instance, Everest’s “initial” blast-hole drilling work was undertaken as part of its latest 36,000-tonne bulk sampling program along the high-grade multiple reef system comprising its Revere play.


Management says while the reef has delivered a lot of gold over the years, it believes it needs to be evaluated on a bigger scale and sees a bulk sampling trial as being a means of demonstrating its viability as a bulk mining project.


Everest put 96 holes into the trial area using an air-blast rig for a total of 1152m on a grid pattern of 3.6m by 2.8m, with each hole drilled to 12m depth and sampled at 1m intervals from 2m depth via a cyclone. The company took 10 samples from each hole and a total of 960 samples were sent to Perth for assay.


Everest says results from the selected high-grade zone are higher than expected, while every zone sampled sees mineralisation linked with high concentrations of nuggety gold in small veins and fractures. Management says the results confirm extensive near-surface, high-grade mineralisation and support its envisaged large-scale orogenic gold system.



Kobada project – Republic of Mali, North-West Africa


Hit: 57m at 2.48g/t gold from 85m


Toubani nailed this wee gem from resource definition drilling at its Kobada gold project in Africa’s landlocked north-western country, Mali.


Kobada’s estimated 2.4 million-ounce mineral resource – viewed by Toubani as “predominantly oxide and open-pittable” - extends through about 4.5km parallel to and within the bounding elements of the Kobada Shear. In the deposit area, the shear is about 1.8km wide and the deposit itself is centred between the shear boundaries.


Toubani’s latest results from a recently-completed resource definition drilling program are in keeping with intercepts reported last month, highlighted by its 71m hit at 1.86g/t gold from 79m including 15m at 4.04g/t. A total of 120 holes were put into the recent program for 11,785m and management says once all analyses are received, it will kick off its updating of the Kobada mineral resource estimate.



Brothers Project – 80km south-west of Mount Magnet , WA


Hit: 80m at 1839ppm total rare earth oxides (TREO) from 8m


This week’s fare would not be complete without mentioning Venture’s longest rare earths hit yet in an air-core (AC) hole at its Jupiter prospect – an 80m intercept at 1839ppm TREO.


The company’s continued success at Jupiter almost makes it seem as if the project is in a fight with itself to keep tossing up ever more impressive numbers – as if daring the rig to find the next big one.


Backing up a plethora of recent hits in the past few months, management also says six results from the first 59 holes in its recently-completed 246-hole, 14,370m air-core (AC) drilling program rank among the top 13 intercepts received from the Jupiter deposit.


Ever since the earliest reconnaissance scout AC drilling in the virgin area in November last year, when a mere six holes reported intercepts between 28m and 40m running grades between 1067ppm and 3008ppm TREO, Jupiter has steadily produced a string of ever-improving hits.


The company has now defined the zone sufficiently well – on account of its unique geophysical magnetic and gravity signatures – to highlight the distinctive shape of the rare earths source. It is inferred at this stage to be a possible alkaline intrusive body, a style noted globally for its potential to contain rare earths.


So, just seven months down the track, all of the drilling is now concentrated into an infill program to close up the original open 1km-by-500m scout grid spacing to half those dimensions. Venture hopes it will provide meaningful data for a maiden resource estimate at Jupiter.



Boundiali Project – Côte d’Ivoire, West Africa


Hit: 74m at 1g/t gold from 167m at Boundiali BD (Target 2)


Aurum has hit the headlines again with another handsome diamond core intercept of 74m going 1g/t gold at its Boundiali BD (Target 2), following the company’s announcement just a fortnight ago of a significant hit of 90m at 1.16g/t gold at its Boundiali BD (Target 1).


BD Target 2 is a 1.7km-long by 1km-wide gold prospect with artisanal workings and lies about 6km north of BD Target 1. The latest intercept also includes 1m averaging 24.73g/t gold and a further 6m at 3.31g/t from 99m, in addition to 8m going 1.51g/t from 71m.


Another core hole produced 33m at 0.84g/t gold from 146m including 1m going 9.95g/t, while a third nailed 1m at 10g/t from 71m.


The headline hole is one of 18 diamond step-back holes for a planned 3070m of drilling in Aurum’s ongoing campaign at its Boundiali project.


Just nine days ago, Aurum revealed it had boosted its West African tenement presence with the acquisition of what it now calls “Boundiali North” (BN) from another company featuring in today’s Big Hits, Turaco Gold.


Aurum has three diamond drill rigs at the project, drilling at about 4000m per month. It plans to soon increase to four diamond drill rigs ripping into some 6000m a month in a bid to generate an initial mineral resource estimate for Boundiali later this year.


Is your ASX-listed company doing something interesting? Contact: office@bullsnbears.com.au

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