Preliminary Scoping Study Pending, Opawica Continues Drilling In Ontario
Opawica Explorations Inc. (TSX.V: OPW) has just completed 4 of the first 6-hole drilling program on the company's 100% owned Atikwa Lake gold and copper project with significant results revealing an extension of mineralization in the Footwall Zone. Opawica plans to recommence drilling by early July and anticipates results of a preliminary scoping study by mid July, 2010.
The purpose of this study is to determine if economics may exist for initially up to 1000 tpd for a minimum eight year mine life, using the historical footprint and infrastructure of the past producing Maybrun-Atikwa Lake mine.
The Atikwa Lake Project is a former 500 tonne per day producing gold and copper mine that has been on stand-by care and maintenance since 1973. Located 120 kilometers south east of Kenora, Ontario, Opawica first began drilling in 2005. The company has completed over 70 diamond drill holes for a total of 10,000 meters drilling on the property's Maybrun Main Zone, Maybrun Footwall Zone and Maybrun North Zone.
Based on the 2008 drilling, historical drilling and IP geophysics, the following National Instrument 43-101 resource estimate was issued in August 2009 by Robert Laakso P. Eng.
These initial near surface and open pit resource estimates, coupled with the fact that over 70% of the Atikwa Lake property has not yet been explored by deep penetrating IP geophysics or diamond drilling, prompted the launch of a second drill program in March 2010. This more recent drill program consists of 6 holes between 200m and 600m in depth for 3,500 meters of drilling on the Main Maybrun Zones to depth beneath the above resource estimates.
In a press release issued June 9th 2010, Opawica announced some significant assays from the current drill program. New mineralization has been discovered that may significantly increase the size of the Footwall Zone and the overall resources on the Atikwa Lake property.
Opawica Chairman of the Board, Donald (Dan) Clark explains exactly what they've discovered and what it could mean for the company.
"We just recently discovered what appears to be a significant extension to the Footwall Zone on the Atikwa Lake Property that underlies the open pit resource. The overall Footwall Zone may now be in the order of magnitude of about 400 meters long by 500 meters vertical (down-dip) and it seems to be averaging about 20 meters wide with an average grade of approximately 1.70 grams per tonne gold (AuEq) equivalent. The Footwall Zone is open on strike and to depth and more drilling is required to define the exact dimension and grade of the Footwall Zone.
The company plans to drill a minimum of 3 more holes on Atikwa, due to commence the first week in July. If results as good as these keep coming in, Opawica will expand the drill program.
Preliminary Scoping Study
Opawica is also in the middle of a Preliminary Scoping Study on the past producing Atikwa-Maybrun mine footprint. This study is due to be completed by mid-July, 2010.
As part of this preliminary study, an economic analysis will be undertaken.
The results of the preliminary scoping study are of critical importance to Opawica. They will basically reveal if the company has preliminary economics to initially produce at up to 1000 tonnes per day.
"The Preliminary Scoping Study will tell us if there are preliminary economics associated with the property at initially 1000 tonnes per day." Clark comments, "It will also provide us with a proposed timeline for permitting, pre-production and production. Because some of the past infrastructure such as the tailings ponds and two ball mills are on site, it should shorten the proposed timelines. There are some permitting issues and we have to complete consultation with the first nation groups in the area… That could take about a year. It is possible however, that with financing and permits production could be achieved in about an18 to 24 month period. That timeline is full of conjecture right now because we won't know until we see the final results of the study."
Opawica owns approximately 11,000,000 shares (35%) of Upper Canada Gold Corp. (TSX.V – UCC) which trades at about $0.25 per share. The principal assets of UCC is approximately $2,000,000 cash and 275,000 ozs Au (Indicated) and 355,000 ounces (Inferred) on the Dingman gold property located in south eastern Ontario.
Opawica Explorations Inc. has had a lot of success in the past, both near and distant. However, what's most exciting about this company is its potential future success. Situated in the mining-friendly jurisdiction of Kenora, Ontario, the company has outlined impressive resource estimates, has just discovered an extension to the Footwall Zone and is on the brink of completing a Preliminary Scoping Study.
The largest gold resource in the Kenora, Ontario area is Rainy River Resources' (TSX;"RRR") 4.9 million ounce gold project located about 60km south west of Opawica's Atikwa Lake property. With work completed by Rainy River and ongoing exploration by Opawica at Atikwa Lake, this area may be emerging as an active new gold camp.
Trading at $0.10 on the TSX Venture Exchange, Opawica management believes itself to be under- valued, based just on the ounces of gold in the ground. Considering the changes a positive Preliminary Scoping Study could make to the company, it's an opportunity ripe for consideration by rsk-tolerant investors.
Follow Opawica's progress at www.opawica.com
By Claire O'Connor James West