Agnico Eagle Mines (TSX: AEM; NYSE: AEM) is well on its way to growing open pit resources at its Detour Lake gold mine 300 km northeast of Timmins, Ontario, with drill results returning high-grade intervals at the future West pit.
The new drill hole results expand mineralization beyond the last resource estimate in mid-year 2021. The measured and indicated resource was 14.7 million oz. in 572 million tonnes grading 0.8 g/t gold, and the inferred resource was 1.1 million oz. in 48.3 million tonnes grading 0.81 g/t gold. A cut-off of 0.5 g/t was used.
“Today’s drill results highlight the significant opportunity that exists to continue to grow mineral resources beyond the levels included in the mid-year 2021 mineral resource estimate announced in September 2021. The results include a number of wide, high-grade intersections located both within and outside of the mid-year 2021 … pit shell,” CEO Tony Makuch said in a release.
“Also encouraging is that we continue to extend the mineralization at depth. Based on work to date, we have confirmed the existence of a broad and continuous corridor of mineralization extending over 4 km from the Main pit through the Saddle zone to beyond the planned West pit location to a depth of at least 800 metres below surface with the system remaining open.”
Drilling at the future West pit outside the defined resources returned 17.4 metres grading 30.89 g/t, including 9 metres at 58.42 g/t; 2 metres at 22.94 g/t gold; 9.5 metres at 22.22 g/t; 10 metres at 4.87 g/t, including 3 metres at 14.73 g/t; 13.9 metres at 4.81 g/t, including 15.48 g/t; 21 metres at 2.86 g/t, including 21.8 g/t; 24 metres at 2.76 g/t, including 2.3 metres at 18.06 g/t and 12 metres at 2.28 g/t; 67 metres at 1.67 g/t; 25.5 metres at 1.63 g/t; and 79 metres at 0.92 g/t gold.
Intercepts at the Saddle zone outside the defined resources included 3 metres at 142.66 g/t gold; 10 metres at 2.98 g/t, including 2 metres at 12.46 g/t; 20.4 metres at 2.21 g/t; 2 metres at 19.52 g/t; 40 metres at 1.01 g/t; 47 metres at 0.87 g/t; and 59.3 metres at 0.94 g/t gold.
Intersections at the North pit extended mineralization 440 metres to the west along the Walter Lake trend. Assays included 21.5 metres at 2.54 g/t; 13 metres at 2.45 g/t; 2 metres 20.74 g/t; 3 metres at 8.40 g/t; 6 metres at 4.73 g/t; 11 metres at 2.73 g/t; 2.27 g/t over 12.0 m; 13 metres at 2.02 g/t; 17 metres at 1.94 g/t, including 3 metres at 9.12 g/t; 13.1 metres at 1.91 g/t; 22.3 metres at 1.25 g/t; 23.2 metres at 1.13 g/t; 23 metres at 1.02 g/; and 20.3 metres at 1.01 g/t gold.
Drilling at the Saddle zone within the defined resources returned key intercepts of 32.4 metres grading 5.41 g/t gold, including 4 metres at 38.74 g/t; 2 metres at 22.94 g/t gold; 16 metres at 3.23 g/t gold, including 5 metres at 8.84 g/t; 26 metres at 2.73 g/t gold, including 8.4 metres at 7.16 g/t; 29.1 metres grading 1.63 g/t gold; and 32 metres grading 1.34 g/t gold, including 3.2 metres at 6.52 g/t gold.
Also, within the resource envelope at the West pit zone, drilling intercepted 27.4 metres grading 2.71 g/t gold, including 2.1 metres at 30.14 g/t; and 30.7 metres at 0.87 g/t gold.
Kirkland Lake Gold (whose merger with Agnico Eagle closed on Feb. 8) acquired the Detour Lake property at the beginning of 2020. Since then, contained gold in the measured and indicated resources has tripled. A technical report and life-of-mine plan for the mine will be released in the second quarter this year.
(This article first appeared in the Canadian Mining Journal)