Calibre Mining (TSX: CXB)(OTC: CXBMF) Senior VP Corp Dev Ryan King on Hitting High-Grade Gold at the Limon Mine Project, Nicaragua; Plus Acquisition of Marathon Gold Corp.


Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the senior vice president of corporate development for Calibre Mining — Mr. Ryan King. Ryan, how are you today?

Ryan King: Excellent, Gerardo. How are you?

Gerardo Del Real: I am well. The last time you and I spoke, we were talking about record production guidance that was very, very bullish at much lower gold prices than the ones that we have today. Today, gold sits at US$2,035 per ounce, stubbornly above the US$2,000 level. And it seems, to me, that it's bottoming. 

And, listen, you just had a press release that I think the market didn't fully appreciate. You had bonanza-grade drill results at the Limon Mine Complex. You hit 111.92 grams per tonne gold over 4.1 meters and 33.6 grams per tonne gold over 2.6 meters. So I wanted to talk about that aspect of this specific project. And then, I know you have a lot else going on… so we could chat about that a bit later.

Ryan King: Yeah, it's a very exciting time and a very exciting opportunity for Calibre. That's one of our approaches to the business is consistently reinvesting into exploration. This year, in 2024, we have earmarked about 100,000 meters of drilling in Central America. And because of the fact that we've got these fantastic targets and we continue to replenish the pipeline of opportunities there, we're never short of these new types of potential targets that could lead to resources and could lead to discoveries.

And what we're talking about in our January 30th news release is an area at our El Limon property. El Limon has been in production since the 1940s and has produced well over 4 million ounces of gold. And we continue to find and discover new zones of mineralization. 

In fact, in that January 30th news release, those drill results are on an area that was known to us. It's located about a kilometer away from the last reserve resource, which we call Panteon North along a multi-km-long corridor; we call this the VTEM Gold Corridor. And what it tells us is that it's a very prospective region.

Going to the northeast, we've got probably 4 to 6 km of prospective ground when you line it up with the geophysics and the geochemistry and the drilling results that we've seen so far. It’s been incredibly encouraging to get these results; true width was 4 meters. So that's a good solid mineable width. And, of course, 111 grams per tonne gold really says it all. 

So, really exciting to see that continuation and demonstrating the prospectivity of this area.

Gerardo Del Real: You're also undertaking large step-out drill programs to the north and to the east by the Santa Pancha project. Can you speak to the targets there because, again, when you’re talking about a multi-km-long gold corridor, there's clearly a lot more economic gold to be discovered. Can you talk about the step-outs?

Ryan King: Sure, following up on some of that drilling, what's helped us with target delineation is, of course, the team, which has done an incredible job of going through structural analysis and going through geochemistry. A tool that has helped us — and we've embedded this tool into that news release and in our corporate presentation — is this VTEM information. 

And, basically, what it is… is when you see a high of a pink color to a low of a yellow color, you are getting a contact. And this is a high-low contact that would demonstrate there's some type of a quartz system, or quartz veining system, or structure there that lines up with the other analysis. And what's so exciting about this is that we continue to step out along this contact — and we discover new zones.
And I'll go back to 2020, right on the edge here, we discovered Panteon. Panteon was an ore shoot that was about 100,000 ounces of over 7 grams per tonne gold. We stepped out, again, talking about the step-outs here, we stepped out north of that zone and we entered into a new discovery in 2022, which amounted to 250,000 ounces at almost 10 grams per tonne gold.

Now, what you're seeing in these results that we're talking about, we're stepping out another kilometer to the northeast along this contact and finding more. What we're doing is we're going, ‘Okay, since this contact and the other additional layers of science are so prospective, let's continue to step-out along this high-low contact, tying it in with the other science that we're doing and see what other ore shoots we can discover along this, as we talked about, 4 to 6-km-long corridor.’

And why that's exciting is because on the other side of this contact, B2Gold and previous operators mined 1.3 million ounces of gold, and that lines up exactly where this VTEM high-low contact exists. So that's demonstrating the fact that this works well as a tool to help us find more gold mineralization. The team is incredibly excited about the discovery potential along what we call the VTEM Gold Corridor, which is multiple kilometers.

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Gerardo Del Real: If you weren't busy enough, you also just completed the acquisition of Marathon Gold. And I know that you were visiting the project here recently. Tell me about the visit and tell me what comes next for Calibre?

Ryan King: Sure, it’s a very exciting and transformational time for the business. Calibre, as everybody knows, this year, our gold production will be 275,000 to 300,000 ounces from Central America and Nevada. And we have demonstrated, quarter over quarter for 16 quarters, that we can be a reliable quarter-over-quarter producer that delivers on expectations.

And now, what's happened is we've acquired Marathon Gold with the Valentine Gold Mine, the Valentine Gold Project, as many people would know it as. And this is a 5 million ounce resource, 2.7 million ounces in reserves, that’s gone through all of the economic studies and gone through permitting; the team is well over 50% through construction of the project. 

As you mentioned, I was just there with our chief executive officer, Darren, who has many, many decades of experience with these types of large open-pit deposits all around the world. So having his level of expertise and experience lended to this project is going to be very beneficial for the team.

We were spending a lot of time with the team there that’s actually moving dirt for the tailings management facility, as well as mining some of the open pits. So you're mining some of the waste to bring it into use for the tailings and the roads, etc. And so it's going to be a very exciting transformational year and exciting from an exploration perspective. 

We're looking at reinvesting back into the project from an exploration perspective along what is known as the Valentine Gold or Valentine Lake Gold Shear Zone, which has been outlined and identified as 32-km-long. 

And, yet, right now, where the resources sit is approximately 7 km from the tip of the Marathon pit to the tip of the Leprechaun pit. So we believe — as does the team there, which has done a fantastic job — that there's very good potential to discover and expand resources along this 32-km-long corridor. And we're looking at what the program could look like for 2024 and beyond. 

It’s very exciting to see the development and construction of the project advance, and we would anticipate at this point in time that we could see first gold production by the first half of 2025. So we're not talking about something that's going to be in production in the next four to five years. We're talking within 18 months that we should be in a production scenario of the Valentine Gold Mine.

Gerardo Del Real: Well, that's a lot of irons in the fire at a time where, again, I think we're on the way to new all-time highs in the gold spot price. You've played the consolidation beautifully… you've added accretive assets… you're hitting on all fronts on the exploration front and on the production front and on forward-looking guidance and bringing new production to the company's portfolio. A lot of stuff to like, Ryan. 

Anything to add to that?

Ryan King: Well, just that not only is this a transformational year but, really, I failed to mention that we are going into a jurisdiction that many investors would classify, as we do, as a Tier-1 mining jurisdiction with Valentine located in the central region of Newfoundland and Labrador. 

It's a tremendous place to do business; very open for business. And as many investors know, Canada is a Tier-1 mining jurisdiction. So it's great to see that transformation of our net asset value of the business evolving and diversifying as well.

Gerardo Del Real: Good stuff. Ryan, thank you for that thorough update. Appreciate it!

Ryan King: Take care, Gerardo, and I look forward to talking to you soon.

Gerardo Del Real: Alright, chat soon. 

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