Revival Gold (CVE RVG) released this week a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) on a 1st phase heap leach restart of its flagship Beartrack-Arnett project in Idaho.
The PEA outlines 72,000 ounces of gold per year at all-in sustaining costs (AISC) of $1,057 for the initial seven years of mine life at the brownfield site.
“Beartrack-Arnett ranks as one of the highest grade and largest independently owned undeveloped open pit gold projects in the US,” Revival Gold CEO Hugh Agro told MINING.COM.
Revival Gold was founded in 2017 around a property consolidation of the Beartrack-Arnett gold project, a land position which Agro, former EVP of Kinross Gold, said dates back to the first governor of the state of Idaho, George Shoup. The company picked up the claim position from a descendant of Shoup.
In September 2017, Revival Gold announced the execution of an earn-in and related stock purchase agreement with Meridian Gold Company, a subsidiary of Yamana Gold.
Revival now has 100% interest in the project, which spans about 5,400 hectares.
The historic operation produced about 100,000 ounces a year in 1990s, but was shut down in 2000 when the price of gold fell below $300 an ounce.
Over the past three years, Agro said, Revival has taken the resource from nil to 3million ounces.
In February, an updated mineral resource estimate outlined an indicated mineral resource of 36.4 million tonnes at 1.16 g/t gold containing 1.35 million ounces of gold, as well as an inferred mineral resource of 47.2 million tonnes at 1.08 g/t gold containing 1.64 million ounces of gold, including an initial bulk underground component of 6.7 million tonnes at 2.19 g/t gold containing 0.47 million ounces of gold.
Agro said Beartrack-Arnett is advanced in terms of infrastructure, and the project is fully permitted through NEPA for exploration.
“Permits will need to be updated to move to production,” Agro said, “But we’ve got a real head start here.”
The PEA follow-up recommendations include moving on to a pre-feasibility study for the heap leach development, in addition to completing a PEA on a mill development option at the site.
Agro said the longer-term plan is to develop a mill and process mill material, aiming for 20,000 tonnes a day.
“That would make Beartrack a 300,000 ounce per year producer, which would put us in the top six US gold producers,” Agro said.
Agro said that Beartrack has a strong ESG track record, and the company intends to keep the bar high in terms of performance.
Three rigs are drilling currently, between the north and south pits, and also south of known mineralization in an area known as ‘rabbit’. Twelve of 49 holes have been released so far, and remaining results from assay labs are expected within three months.
The company will be expanding the resource next year, and expects to commence a PFS in early 2022.
Despite an impending transition to an administration expected to be less friendly to mining explorers, Agro said the project’s permitting position and Idaho’s deep socio-economic roots as mining country put it in a strong position.
“In terms of exploration, if you want to be anywhere, you want to be in the US and you want to be on a brownfield site.”