The Tres Cruces project is located in north central Peru and accessible via a paved road 127 km from the city of Trujillo, located on the Pacific coast. Salaverry is the deep water port near the city of Trujillo. Infrastructure near the project includes an airstrip a few kilometres to the north as well as Barrick’s existing Lagunas Norte operations ~10km away. Lagunas produced over 10 million ounces gold from oxide material and has another 4.3 million ounces in resources. Tres Cruces and Lagnuas Norte share a project boundary (click here to see a map of the project).
Tres Cruces ranks among the highest oxide development deposits globally with 424,000 ounces gold of oxide material (see “Comparable Projects” table below) There are an additional 205,000 ounces of leachable sulphides (see Mineral Resource Estimate Tables).
The Tres Cruces project contains a NI 43-101 Resource Estimate of 2.47 million ounces of gold at 1.65 g/t gold in the indicated category, consisting of 46.5M tonnes of oxide and sulfide material. The deposit is 100% pit-constrained and is amenable for open-pit mining. Included in this resource are 630,000 leachable ounces at 1.28 g/t gold in the indicated category, contained in 15,343,000 tonnes.
The defined leachable resource consists of oxide material and leachable sulphides (link to Resource Estimate tables). The current defined oxide leachable ounces and the immediate underlying leachable sulfide ounces demonstrate the potential for an economic standalone heap leach operation with depth expansion into the sulphide part of the deposit. If processed first, the oxide and leachable sulphide ounces would significantly off-set the capital costs of a much larger sulphide operation.
Drilling at Tres Cruces has only been completed to a depth of approximately 320 metres with many holes ending in mineralization. Drilling within and below the optimized pit shell could identify further sulphide mineralization and test the potential at depth. The presence of deep mineralization with strong alteration, positive geochemical signature, and deep seated hydrothermal breccias suggest there is an opportunity for deeper mineralization, possibly feeder zones attached to the current known mineralization. Moreover, there are opportunities for the Company to further identify more leachable (oxide and sulphide) gold resources on the Tres Cruces Project, in areas covered with nearby post mineral volcanics which would enhance project economics.
Currently, recoverable silver determined from the gold metallurgical work has not been included in the Resource Estimate because of insufficient silver assaying. Indications are that silver grades are generally low, ranging between 1.5 and 2.5 g/t Ag, potentially containing 2.5 to 3.5 million ounces of silver. Any silver recovered with the gold would further enhance project economics. There is a moderate correlation between silver and gold on the Tres Cruces project with a ratio of approximately 3:1 based on over 43,200 intervals assayed for both metals.