With positive developments and the new political landscape in Colombia, Royal Road is actively expanding its presence by making application for over 450,000 hectares of concession contracts in Narino province and by reviewing other promising gold opportunities in the region of its La Golondrina and La Redencion gold projects, and elsewhere throughout the country.
The company is liaising regularly and actively pursuing alliances with Colombian government bodies in order to responsibly align itself with the country’s postconflict aspirations. One such initiative involves the potential joint acquisition of airborne magnetic and radiometric data covering the company’s concession contract applications and areas of state mining reserve in Narino province. The proposed survey will cover areas known to be prospective for high-grade intrusion-related gold mineralization in the east and for porphyry copper and gold mineralization in the west. The company’s plan is to rationalize and reduce its application areas, and focus on newly generated targets following completion of the airborne survey and subsequent reconnaissance fieldwork and community consultation programs.
The company has acquired more than 90 per cent of Nicaragua-focused Caza Gold and is currently completing compulsory acquisition of the remaining 10 per cent. Caza holds close to 75,000 hectares of exploration licence in the prospective Chortis belt of western Nicaragua.
The two key projects in the portfolio of Caza assets which management believes illustrate significant size-potential are the Los Andes and Piedra Iman projects.
Los Andes porphyry copper-gold project
The Los Andes district is located 90 kilometres from Managua in the department of Boaco. Access is through a major paved highway from Managua. Caza controls 100 per cent of six mineral exploration concessions covering the Los Andes district. The total concession package is approximately 18,500 hectares.
Within the district, the dominant rocks are volcanics of andesitic composition belonging to the Late Oligocene to Early Pliocene Coyol group. Numerous intrusive rocks cut the volcanic sequence, with at least two large dioritic porphyries identified to date. Associated with the intrusive/volcanic activity are numerous breccia pipes and diatremes. Hydrothermal alteration is extensive throughout the licence areas and is typically a combination of argillic (silica-clay), advanced argillic (silica-alunite) and silicification.
In 2015, Caza completed an airborne geophysical survey over the area which highlighted a number of well-defined structural trends and radiometric anomalies. Short exploratory drilling campaigns conducted in 2014 to 2015 targeted silicified lithocaps and localized breccias, and intersected strong alteration, and anomalous copper, silver and gold in a number of holes, but failed to intersect any potentially economic intervals of mineralization.
Immediately around the lower slopes of Cerro Quizaltepe, over 1,500 rock chip samples were collected by Caza geologists, with 123 returning values greater than 200 parts per million copper and 31 greater than 500 parts per million. A similar halo of elevated gold was also recorded with 82 rock chips returning greater than 50 parts per billion. When viewed alongside the airborne geophysics, this large area of copper-gold anomalous geochemistry is thought to be indicative of a copper-gold mineralized porphyry body at depth. Drilling at Cerro Quizaltepe was too shallow to fully test the deep porphyry potential, but it did intersect alteration and anomalous copper mineralization (211.7 metres at greater than 200 parts per million Cu in hole QZP-003 and 10.95 metres at 0.19 per cent Cu in hole QZP-002), supporting the interpretation of potential for an underlying higher-grade porphyry copper and gold body.
Recent modelling and interpretation of these data, suggest that the Los Andes area is represented by a circular caldera-style structure located immediately adjacent to and to the north of Cerro Quizaltepe. Management interpret the caldera to be a late-stage feature having developed late in the history of deep porphyry emplacement at Cerro Quizaltepe and hosting alteration that, whilst impressive in its extent, may be distal to the main mineralized body, and thus lower grade and subeconomic.
Management’s view is that the principal target at Los Andes is a deep copper or copper and gold porphyry body located beneath Cerro Quizaltepe and at the southern margin of the Los Andes caldera. Testing of this body will require further geological modelling and then deep drilling. The company is actively seeking a joint venture partner to assist it with drill testing at Cerro Quizaltepe.
Piedra Iman iron-oxide-copper-gold (IOCG) project
The Piedra Iman licence area is located 100 kilometres northwest of Managua through the Pan American Highway and 30 kilometres north of B2Gold Corp.’s El Limon mine. Within the greater region, numerous small artisanal gold mines, including over 80 small gold processing plants, have been recorded. Caza controls 100 per cent of the 7,947.27-hectare Aguas Calientes concession encompassing the Piedra Iman project.
Piedra Iman was initially explored in the seventies by a Noranda subsidiary and included drilling to a 200-metre depth and the completion of one exploration adit. This drilling and underground sampling intersected significant widths of copper mineralization. Most samples were not assayed for gold, and results are historical in nature and cannot be verified. A selection of the better historical results includes the following:
Gold and copper mineralization is associated with biotite, quartz veining and brecciation, with the presence of magnetite, specularite and rose actinolite having been recorded in both historical drill core and hand specimen.
Recently, rock chip sampling by Caza reported grades of up to 60 grams per tonne gold and numerous copper samples grading plus 1 per cent from Piedra Iman. Royal Road Minerals plans to complete a ground-based magnetic survey as soon as possible to assist in identifying the areal extent of the potentially mineralized magnetic body. If possible, access to the underground adit will also be obtained; this will provide valuable information as to the mineralization style and characteristics at depth.
Story by ProactiveInvestors