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Palamina Corp. (TSX-V: PA)(OTC: PLMNF) CEO Andrew Thomson on Milestone Drilling Program at Usicayos Gold Project
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the president of Palamina Corporation, Mr. Andrew Thomson. Andrew, it is a pleasure to have you on and to have some positive news on the drilling at the Usicayos Gold Project in Peru. Congratulations, a milestone moment years in the making. How are you doing?
Andrew Thomson: I'm pretty good Gerardo. Yeah, we're finally drilling at Usicayos. I'm quite happy with the program that's been initiated. Our plan now is to drill 2,600 meters in six different holes. They'll be about a depth of 400 meters. So they're a little more extended than we originally thought. Originally, we were going to do 12 holes. We elected to go this route, so that there's less moving of the rig. Also I've negotiated with Energold to extend the season by leaving the drill at site. They give us a very good rate for keeping the drill on site. So that just should give us another two weeks at the end of the drilling season.
Gerardo Del Real: And this is a diamond drilling program, right?
Andrew Thomson: Yes. Yeah. Energold are known for using these smaller rigs. You know, they're very portable. You, they take about a day and a half to move from pad to pad, but they're quite efficient. They can go to, you know, a, roughly six to 800 meter depth.
Gerardo Del Real: And so you said six holes, 2,400 meters. Is that accurate?
Andrew Thomson: Yeah. 2,600 meters, roughly. It'll be between 20, 24 and 2,600 meters.
Gerardo Del Real: Walk me through the target. Andrew, you've been pretty vocal and you've done a lot of very, very good high quality exploration work prior to this drilling program. This isn't a green fields target that you just stumbled upon and put a drill to. You've actually done a lot of good surface exploration, trenching, mapping, the works. Can you walk me through everything that kind of led up to the diamond drilling program and what you're hoping to find?
Andrew Thomson: Yeah, again, we're looking for the source of the alluvial gold in Madre de Dios down in the valley on the north end of the Andes and Ollachea was a deposit that was defined by our team when they were working for that company. And 65 kilometers west is Usicayos. So, you know, in our flank is Crucero. It's a million indicated million inferred gold deposit, but there's a, a big shear zone there. And so we stake the ground about half of it was sort of ex Newmont, and there were other groups in we've gone to auction against groups like Fresnillo. So it's taken us many years to acquire this land package, but the good news is we own it a hundred percent. We staked it, there's no backend payments, no royalties. And we've defined a 2.4 kilometer system. We've got four visible gold areas. We've had again, chip samples as high as almost 20 ounces, 620 grams. We've seen three meters of 30 grams in channel samples. But the key here is that we're getting pulses of mineralization in an orogenic Devonian system. That currently is about 2.4 kilometers. I can tell you, we've had some internal claims come up. We won some at auction about two weeks ago. So, you know, we're, we're trying to extend the zone to the Southwest as well. Last year, we had a new zone Veta Northeast that we discovered to the Northeast. So right now we're, we're drilling in the Veta zone, which sit the center of the 2.4 kilometers.
Gerardo Del Real: You have pretty significant property holdings in the Puno orogenic gold belt. And you also have an equity partner in Winshear Gold Corp. That is getting ready for drilling. How is that coming along?
Andrew Thomson: So Winshear just conducted a program at Gaban. We've defined a two kilometer by 900 meter zone, which is known as a Coritiri zone. Last Friday, they resubmitted all of the, there are comments for the drill permitting, which is a DIA, which is the initial environmental permitting, but it's the, the bulk of the permitting. Again, we've got all of the responses completed and submitted. Normally it would take anywhere from, it'll probably be two months. So we're hoping we get that permit this year to drill next year. But the key is, in the last round, we sort of, the Coritiri zone is two kilometers. And on the south side of the Anami River, where there's a lot of alluvial gold, again, there was 54 gram weight nugget pulled out of the stream. We've seen another 35 gram weight nugget last week, but north of the area so that the Coritiri zones assists to the southwest and the north west area between Coritiri and San Gaban the town of San Gaban on the next ridge over we, we had a six gram assay, and it, it actually makes more sense for all the alluvial gold that we're finding in the streams that that should be the zone.
And so, you know, contributing most of the alluvial gold, anyhow, long story short, they did 90 samples have gone in, and there are two zones where we crushed rock and got visible gold, the geology is slightly different. It's a little bit more conducive to the kind of mineralization we're looking for. So it's pretty exciting. I think, again, it extends it by about 200 meters. So there's kind of two kicks at the can. We're expecting Usicayo will be drilled this year and then Gaban next year. And, you know, it's exciting because both have over two kilometer strike lines in terms of structures. So they're big big systems and it, again, they both sit above Madre de Dios with Gaban being the closest.
Gerardo Del Real: I mentioned how diligent you've been in selecting your targets and which properties to drill, given the significant property holdings. I know that you're also working closely with gold spot discoveries, which has done a great job in identifying and advancing targets for several companies and has contributed to multiple pretty significant discoveries here in the past couple of years. How is communication with them?
Andrew Thomson: Well, so we've gone through the first round with them and we've submitted all the government data that we have, which includes a lot of geochem and government geophysics. We've also submitted all our own data and we bought out a database from a company called Orion and we've put it all together. We, we're not quite at the first pass. We're close, we're still making sure the data is accurate. There's a lot of questions that came back from them, but I'm pretty, I'm pretty encouraged. You know, again, we're the first to fly the belt. We've got a lot, lot of geophysical example. So as an example, with Gaban, there's 1,200 miners mining, three to five ounce material over a 1.2 kilometer area. And we can clearly see the structures in the area that we've flown. And when we put that together with the area Gaban again, we've kept that property to the south west. And again, Fresnillo came in a staked on top of us, but as we move forward and moved to the drill phase, you know, it becomes quite exciting because we're starting to, again, very large systems, 700 square kilometers of alluvial gold downstream from the two watersheds. So the more we look at it, the more it adds up. And I'm just really encouraged by the fact that we're now both Winshear and ourselves are entering the drill discovery phase.
Gerardo Del Real: Seems like there's gold all over the place. Let's hope that drill bit finds a little bit of it.
Andrew Thomson: Yeah. I'm fairly certain, we will find gold it's continuity that's the key in being able to build the resource. But as I've always said, this belt is very forgiving when it comes to the geologists it's more, more the political side of it. That's a little bit more difficult.
Gerardo Del Real: Well, one step at a time, I know you've done a really good job in communicating with the local community, making sure that you have social license support. And I understand there was recently some concessions made where you came to an agreement and helped with the road and, and among other things that you've done very well in the community. How is that?
Andrew Thomson: Well, initially the community had asked us a lot of the projects in the area are named after the communities. And we weren't able to make that commitment simply because we were an application process and it would've been a lot of effort to change all of the different applications. But as soon as we were through the process and approved, we elected to make the concession. Then the community asked us for some support. So we've agreed to help them building roads and we've got one local artisan group, a woman's group, that we're supporting. And as soon as we agreed to those, it took a little bit of time because they do things by Asemblea, which means you once a month. So we, we didn't get in time for the first month, but now that it's completed, everything's great. And we're really not having any issues. We employ quite a few people. I think we're up to about 35 locally now. So, post COVID everybody's coming out of COVID. I went down to Lima for seven days. I spent some, I didn't actually go to project, but you know, I did spend time there and the restaurants are open and things are slowly opening up. It's a little, it's about four to five months behind Canada, but we're definitely able to work without any issues.
Gerardo Del Real: Wonderful news. Great to hear the update, great to know that the drill is turning. Looking forward to results. Andrew, anything else that you want to add to that?
Andrew Thomson: I think people should know that we're well cashed up. You know, we raised $5 million. Eric Sprott came in for 12%. I maintained my interest. So, as did Ernesto Echevarría, one of our largest shareholders and Jeff Phillips. We have about 65 million shares. So still fairly tightly held. And again, this is the first round of drilling on this project where we've got significant values over 2.4 kilometers and it's never been drilled. And again, on our flank sort of on the edge of the, the shear zone, there's 2 million ounces. I'm pretty encouraged that we'll find something. It's whether or not we can build a resource that remains to be seen.
Gerardo Del Real: Looking forward to seeing if you're able to connect those dots. Thanks again.
Andrew Thomson: Okay. Sounds good. Thanks.Click here to see more from Palamina Corp.