Blackrock Gold Corp (CVE:BRC) has kicked off a fully-financed 7,000 metre (m) drilling program at its Tonopah West project in the famous Walker Lane trend of Nevada, sending shares higher.
The Tonopah area is one of the most significant silver-gold districts in North America and generated 174 million ounces (Moz) of silver and 1.8 Moz of gold between 1900 and 1950.
This initial campaign from Blackrock will consist of up to 7,285 metres in 16 reverse circulation (RC ) holes primarily targeting strike and dip extensions of well-defined historic veins, the group said.
"In the 1910s this camp, which spans only four miles end to end, established itself as one of the largest producers in America, though the tumultuous decades that followed were enough to dethrone what was known as the 'Queen of the Silver Camps'," Andrew Pollard, chief executive at Blackrock Gold said in a statement.
"The western-half of the district, newly-consolidated and of which we now control, represented where the last of the production took place when operations shuttered due to low metals prices. It's precisely where these miners left off that we are targeting as the first group to conduct modern exploration on the historic workings," he added.
The firm has now outlined four broad target areas at Tonopah, which have potential to host between 2.5 million and 6 million tonnes with an average grade ranging from 13 to 21 grams per ton (g/t) gold and gold equivalent, Blackrock noted.
The firm also highlighted, however, that there has been insufficient exploration so far to define a resource and that it was uncertain whether further exploration would result in mineral resources.
At the Victor shaft, five drill holes totaling 2,700m are proposed to test the down-dip portion of the vein system as well as test 800m of strike potential to the west, the firm said.
Another five totaling 2,600m will target the veins along strike and down dip including a drillhole 80m west of the last known mineralized zone at the McKane shaft, it added.
An initial program of three drillholes totaling 835m is planned at a discovery made in 1997, which lies within the same stratigraphic package as the Ohio vein located 1.5 kilometres to the east. Over 20 years ago,7.5 g/t gold and 288 g/t silver over 3m was hit here, while follow-up drilling in 2018 hit two 1.5m zones grading 9.7 g/t gold, 715 g/t silver and 4.6 g/t gold, 401 g/t silver.
Finally, three holes, for 1,150m, are planned adjacent to the southeast portion of the property where the flat-lying Ohio vein was mined from the Ohio shaft.
The Ohio vein dips 20 degrees to the south and the potential target ranges from 0.5 million to 1 million tonnes averaging 15 to 30 g/t gold and gold equivalent, Blackrock said.
Shares advanced over 18% to C$0.32 each.
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