General Base Metals
Chakana Copper (TSX-V: PERU)(OTC: CHKKF) CEO David Kelley on More High-Grade Copper-Gold Drill Hits Ahead of Maiden Resource Estimate at Flagship Soledad Project, Peru
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the president & CEO of Chakana Copper — Mr. David Kelley. Dave, how are you today?
David Kelley: Gerardo, I'm doing great. How are you doing?
Gerardo Del Real: I am doing well. You had some news today. You provided results from 14 resource definition holes. Let me read the headline; pretty spectacular numbers. The headline reads:
Chakana Reports 268 meters of 1.17 grams per tonne (g/t) Gold, 0.55% Copper, and 19.2 g/t Silver, or 1.48% Copper Equivalent, in Breccia Pipe #5 from Surface at the Soledad Project in Peru.
Congratulations! The number looks phenomenal; the headline number. But if you dig down and you actually get into the bulk of the results, a lot of really, really good results you have to be excited about.
David Kelley: Yeah, absolutely. I mean that headliner is a really impressive intercept. It's the grade thickness of that 268 meters starting at surface. It demonstrates the potential that these breccia pipes have… so that's a really exciting number.
The other important thing, like you mentioned, all 14 drill holes had significant intercepts; important intercepts. And the grade on those deeper intercepts is higher than the shallower grades. So that's even more exciting when you start thinking, ‘Okay, the pipe is still open at-depth… we're going deeper… it's getting higher grade.’ That's a great attribute to have in these breccia pipes from a mining perspective. So that's really exciting.
We also had another news release out earlier this week, too, on some of the exploration results. So we've been really busy and we're cranking out these results. And I like to think of it that, with each one of these news releases that we put out, we're derisking this project. We're taking the technical risk away and we're advancing it towards that initial resource. And it's a really exciting time for us.
Gerardo Del Real: Let's talk about the release from a couple of days ago. That headline number was 220 meters of 0.62 g/t gold, 79 g/t silver — higher silver grade, I should note — and 0.20% copper, or 1.96 g/t gold equivalent, also, again, from surface, this time at Breccia Pipe #7. And so you mentioned the resource update. You recently had a site visit. How did that go for you?
David Kelley: The site visit went really well. That's been my second trip to Peru since COVID. I went out in August and I went back for the QP visit and it went really well. We covered everything.
We started with a really thorough geologic overview of the project at our core facility. We have a new core facility that's really impressive. We have all of the 60,000 meters that we've drilled there. We have the 4,800 meters that were drilled on the property prior to us acquiring it. That's all there as well.
So we started there. We looked at drill core from a number of the different breccia pipes; the zoning we see in the pipes. Some of our pipes are more precious metal-rich, like you mentioned, the silver and the gold in Breccia #7 — lower copper — but we're still in the top 200 meters of that pipe. We expect that, as we go deeper, we'll get more copper-silver-rich like we've seen in some of the other breccia pipes.
Then, we proceeded from the core facility; we went to the project, did a site visit, visited multiple breccia pipes, stood on them, did some additional sampling as part of the QP process for the 43-101 resource estimate. And then, dropped those samples off… did a lab tour to see how things are going in the lab. And we pretty much covered everything in a short amount of time. But it was a really excellent visit.
Gerardo Del Real: Great work. How is that resource estimate coming along? I know everyone's excited. It should be noted that it will be an initial — a maiden — resource estimate that will be but a peek, right, at the potential there.
We know about the triple-digit amount of targets. We know this will only include a limited amount of the pipes. But how is that coming along so far?
David Kelley: It's coming along really well. We just had a team meeting on that; had everybody that's participating in the process of getting there just give us an update. Everybody's excited about where we're at.
The assays from the labs continue to come in. That's evidenced today that we put another 14 drill holes out. I think we still have another 37 drill holes to put out on Breccia #5 and Huancarama. So we're going to keep cranking out the news. The work is happening.
The nice thing about having multiple breccia pipes is when you get all of the assays back from one breccia pipe, then you can start crunching those numbers and doing the hard work. And so that's ongoing now.
Everybody's committed to meeting our deadlines. Our deadline is by the end of the year, and I think we're going to hit that. It's just dependent on the lab cranking out the results, and they've done a good job. They're delayed but they're consistent. And we planned around that. So yeah, we're all very excited to see what we come up with.
Gerardo Del Real: Assays are still pending; looking forward to those numbers. Before I let you go, I have to ask… how was your experience in Peru? It's funny, because we had a lot of hype during the elections, right? And initially, it was very negative hype.
That seems to have subsided, although it's kind of curious to me that you don't hear the same people that were hyperbolic, in a sense, about how negative the election was. You don't see them highlighting the fact that it hasn't quite played out that way, at least as it relates to the explorers in Peru and the field work that you need to get done.
Because from what I understand, several companies that I've spoken with recently — explorers, I should add — they've had no trouble getting to site. They haven't had any trouble getting drill rigs. They haven't had trouble, outside of minor delays, with the labs. And so has that been your experience, Dave?
David Kelley: Yeah, that's exactly right, Gerardo. And we talked about that. We talked about the newsletter writers sensationalizing the news. And they do that for their own purposes to get readership and that type of thing.
But I've felt all along that a lot of this is overblown hype. And we've seen some very good developments recently with the new prime minister coming in, a new minister of Energy & Mines, which I feel is much more qualified for the role. He has a technical background.
So I'm seeing really good changes. And it's obvious now that Castillo… he knows that he's got to work with the Congress in order to accomplish things. And Congress is saying, ‘We don't need to change the Constitution to achieve what you want to achieve.’
The mining companies have met with Castillo. The big major mining companies have met with them and conveyed their beliefs that Peru is a good place to operate. And there always needs to be an economic incentive to be there and that, if they change anything, it has to be within reason. So I know he's received that message. And I don't expect there to be any kind of radical changes that's going to adversely affect the mining industry.
It would be too contradictory to the interests of Peru for that to happen. And I think everybody — all political parties in Peru — want the best for Peru. And it's just a question of how do you get there? But we're excited about where Peru is as a country right now. And we know that mining is going to be a part of its future, and we plan to be part of that future as well.
Gerardo Del Real: You have a lot of copper; you have a lot of gold; you have a lot of targets. I'm looking forward to the initial resource estimate to just start ballparking what potentially could be there as we extrapolate out, right, with the many pipes that exist.
And looking forward to more assays, Dave. Thank you so much for that update.
David Kelley: You bet, Gerardo. Thank you.
Gerardo Del Real: Chat soon.