Upgraded, expanded Eskay Creek resource
Now hosts 3.9M oz gold, 101.6M oz silver in M&I category North of 60 Mining News – April 9, 2021
Last updated 4/15/2021 at 3:13pm
Skeena Resources Ltd. April 7 announced a substantially upgraded and expanded resources at its Eskay Creek gold-silver project in British Columbia's Golden Triangle.
According to the new calculation, Eskay Creek now hosts 37.65 million metric tons of open pit minable measured and indicated resources averaging 4.2 grams per metric ton (3.76 million ounces) gold and 82.8 g/t (100.3 million oz) silver; plus 5.24 million metric tons of open pit inferred resource averaging 1 g/t (174,000 oz) gold and 25 g/t (4.2 million oz) silver.
In addition, the Northern BC project hosts 851,000 metric tons of underground mineable measured and indicated resources averaging 5 g/t (137,000 oz) gold and 48.6 g/t (1.3 million oz) silver; plus 429,000 metric tons of underground inferred resource averaging 4.1 g/t (57,000 oz) gold and 57 g/t (787,000 oz) silver.
These resources were calculated based on 651,332 meters of historical drilling in 7,583 surface and underground holes at Eskay Creek, plus 104,740 meters of drilling in 751 surface holes completed by Skeena between 2018 and 2021.
Skeena said its two phases of infill drilling at Eskay Creek were immensely successful in upgrading pit constrained resources, as well as adding new resources in the 22 Zone, 21A Zone, 21B Zone, and the recently discovered 21C-HW Zone. Additionally, the Northern Extension, or NEX Zone has now been incorporated into the open pit mineable resource base. A new northern pit expansion integrates the largely measured and indicated NEX Zone and provides the potential for additional reserves.
"I would like to congratulate Skeena's Vice President Exploration and Resource Development Paul Geddes and Chief Resource Geologist Kathi Dilworth and their teams. They have delivered a terrific new resource estimate for Eskay Creek," said Skeena Resources President and CEO Walter Coles. "The measured and indicated resources have increased by an astounding 186%, on a tonnage weighted basis, since our last resource report."
Based on tonnage, roughly 88% of the open pit mineable resources at Eskay Creek report to the measured and indicated categories. Skeena is finalizing a small surface-based drilling program to upgrade the 12% of inferred resource found in small pods of scattered mineralization to the measured and indicated categories.
In the Northern Pit Expansion area, a program of geotechnical drilling and metallurgical sample collection will be conducted to enable the upgrade of resources to reserves with the completion of feasibility level studies at Eskay Creek later this year.
With the infill drilling programs completed and the pit constrained resources having been largely converted to measured and indicated, Skeena has begun a property-scale exploration program. This program, being led by Skeena Resources Director of Exploration Adrian Newton, is designed to define additional near-surface bulk tonnage mineralization with the goal of expanding the current resource base and to supplement the existing mine plan.
Harold Gibson, one of the world's foremost experts in volcanogenic massive sulfide systems, has been engaged by Skeena to assist the exploration program.
"I am eager to see how much more Paul and Adrian Newton, the company's director of exploration, can continue to grow the size of Eskay Creek as we target a Tier-1 annual production and reserve profile," said Coles.
When you combine the surface and underground resources, Eskay Creek now hosts 38.51 million metric tons of measured and indicated resources averaging 4.3 g/t (3.9 million oz) gold and 82.1 g/t (101.6 million oz) silver; plus 5.67 million metric tons of inferred resource averaging 1.3 g/t (231,000 oz) gold and 27.4 g/t (5 million oz) silver.