Freehill Mining uncovers high-grade iron, copper, and gold from sampling at El Dorado

by Leena Thomas
Image: Freehill Mining Limited

Freehill Mining Limited (ASX: FHS) announced that the mapping and sampling program completed in July 2020 has yielded high-grade iron, copper, and gold mineralisation present in rock chip samples at its El Dorado project in Chile.

The company reported that extensive rock chip sampling and mapping program was completed across the ~750 hectare El Dorado project with three new mineralised targets discovered. Highlights of the results from the sampling include Cu- 9.93%, Au- 22.10 g/t, and Fe- 36%.

FHS said that ground magnetic geophysics survey is underway and exploration activities are ongoing through to end September.

El Dorado project

The El Dorado project is located in Chile and adjoins the northern boundary of Freehill’s 67 million-tonne flagship Yerbas Buenas Project.

The El Dorado project covers 750 hectares over eight tenements. The Company had entered into a formal acquisition agreement in respect of the El Dorado tenements in March this year, and the acquisition by issue of Freehill shares was approved by shareholders in July 2020.

The El Dorado tenements will lift Freehill’s exploration and development area to approximately 1,250 Hectares in Chile’s highly prospective iron-copper-gold belt.

The El Dorado area consists of a sequence of intrusive rocks (diorites, quartz-diorites, amphibole diorites), micro-diorites, granodiorites, tonalites in the northern section and intermediate volcanic to sub-volcanic rocks emerging predominantly in the southern and western sections in the form of fine andesites and andesitic dikes.

Sampling program at El Dorado

Freehill announced that its geological personnel had recently carried out a five-day preliminary surface sampling and mapping program in July 2020 targeting the entire El Dorado tenements. This follows on from work completed earlier this year.

Reconnaissance work

The company said that the work focussed on the artisanal mining areas in the southern portion of the project area (Target 1) that showed encouraging gold mineralisation during earlier work this year, as well as two areas (Target 2 and Target 3), highlighted during the work and 19 samples were collected.

FHS said that three of the samples were collected from float that was located just outside the El Dorado tenements in the northern section of the project area as it was deemed by Freehill geologists to be representative of mineralisation in a steep cliff that marks the boundary of the project area. The three samples are EDM16, EDM18, and EDM19.

High-grade results from sampling program

Freehill announced that the preliminary exploration work at the El Dorado concessions has identified three high grade copper and gold targets.

Significant rock chip sampling results include Cu- 9.93%, Au- 22.10 g/t, and Fe- 36%.

Target 1 area

The company said that majority of the sampling was focussed on Target 1 area where work by the tenements previous owners highlighted a series of veins and artisanal workings that are sub-parallel to the El Tofo-Romeral fault where results of up to 4.9% Cu, 22.8g/t Au & 50% Fe were returned.

FHS said that the current sampling has confirmed the previous results and confirms the area as a prospective target for Cu/Au mineralisation with results up to sub-parallel to the El Tofo-Romeral fault.

Target 2

The company said that Target 2 contains a series of veins that are sub-parallel to the El Tofo-Romeral fault as well associated cross cutting mineralised structures that are anomalous in Cu/Fe mineralisation. FHS said that grades of up to 4% Cu, 0.9g/t Au & 29% Fe were returned.

Target 3

El Dorado’s Target 3 is a steep north-south cliff running parallel to the project area’s western boundary, where float sampled from the scree of the cliff returned anomalous Cu/Au mineralisation.

The company said that grades of up to 10% Cu, 1.6g/t Au & 18% Fe were returned. FHS said that areas 3 will be more extensively mapped and sampled as part of the work planned for September.

Updates and next steps

FHS said that Argali Geophysics is currently completing a ground magnetic survey of the entire El Dorado project area and the data from the survey is expected to be available to assist in the planned mapping and sampling program.

Freehill announced that it has contracted Tracking SpA, a Chilean contract exploration company that specialises in exploration of copper gold mineralisation, to complete a more detailed mapping and sampling survey of the El Dorado project.

The survey will include rockchip and soil sampling as well as more detailed surface mapping, and is expected to commence in late August-early September 2020 and is expected to complement the ground magnetic survey that will be completed and modelled prior to Tracking commencing the survey.

The company said that diamond drilling is being planned for the two anomalies highlighted in the IP geophysics.

Management statements

Chief Executive Officer Peter Hinner said: “These assay results from this sampling program confirm that El Dorado is another richly endowed mineralised area that will potentially add to our magnetite resource at Yerbas Buenas, but it also gives us further value upside given the discovery of this copper and gold mineralisation.

The grades are undoubtedly very encouraging. While magnetite is our primary focus, it is worth reminding shareholders that El Dorado and Yerbas Buenas are along trend from some significant copper and gold discoveries. We are now considering follow-up exploration given these results. That said, at this time our focus is on advancing the Yerbas Buenas feasibility study – an important body of work will be another major value catalyst for Freehill.”