The RDP copper-gold project is currently under option to Antofagasta Minerals S.A. (“Antofagasta”), a wholly-owned subsidiary of Antofagasta PLC (ANTO: LSE). Antofagasta has an option to acquire a 75% interest in RDP by spending $10,000,000 on exploration over eight years and delivering a NI 43-101 compliant preliminary economic assessment report (the “Report”).
Located 40 km west of the Company’s flagship Kliyul, RDP is over 10,000 hectares in size and lies within the Stikine Terrane, which is host to numerous significant porphyry deposits in northern British Columbia, including Kemess, Red Chris, Kerr-Sulphurets and Galore Creek. The Project is also in a similar geological environment to NorthWest Copper’s East Niv discovery, which adjoins RDP to the north.
RDP contains several porphyry copper-gold targets (Roy, Day, Porcupine, and Bird - see Figure 1), that have been explored intermittently since the early 1970’s, including prospecting and mapping, various geochemical surveys, ground and airborne geophysical surveys, trenching and a limited amount of drilling. The Project is underlain by lower Hazelton Group volcanic and sedimentary rocks (Lower Jurassic) of andesitic and dacitic composition and the Gyr rhyolite porphyry; and by Late Triassic to Early Jurassic plutonic rocks including the Fir gabbro and Roy plutonic suite with porphyritic plugs, sills, and stocks of monzodiorite composition.
RDP Target Areas
Mineralization at Day includes pyrite, magnetite, chalcopyrite, minor molybdenite, and local bornite as disseminations, sheeted veins and vein stockworks in diorite and adjacent altered volcaniclastic rocks. Historical drilling includes 2,472 m in 19 drill holes. Drill highlights include 0.67% Cu and 0.93 g/t Au over 58.8 m (drill hole D-74-1) and 0.54% Cu and 0.69 g/t Au over 57 m (drill hole C-92-1).
Mineralization at Roy consists of a quartz-magnetite-chalcopyrite stringer stockwork within a monzonite intrusion. Trench sampling in 1990 encountered 0.121% Cu and 0.55 g/t Au over 62 m within an 80 m trench. Shallow diamond drilling programs have been completed at Roy, but results are incomplete or unavailable except for drill hole EQ-11-01. This hole was drilled in 2011, the last time RDP was explored, and returned 0.11% Cu and 0.64 g/t Au over 122.95 m.
Discovered in 1972, the Porcupine target, was explored as a stratabound massive sulphide target. Float samples assayed as high as 17.2% Cu and 0.19% Cu with 7.98 g/t Au. Four holes drilled in 1972 returned sporadic results. More recent evaluation of the alteration and soil geochemistry at Porcupine suggests it is epithermal in nature and possibly related to an underlying porphyry system.
The historical Bird Target, located between Roy and Porcupine target areas, about 1.8 km west-southwest of Roy, was reassessed with mapping and prospecting. A nearby mineral occurrence with several percent chalcopyrite, quartz-chalcopyrite vein stockwork and potassic alteration (K-feldspar, magnetite), was identified in a topographic low where porphyry dykes intrude prospective (subaqueous type) volcaniclastic host rocks.
Pacific completed 1,861 m of drilling at RDP in six drill holes in 2022.
Antofagasta can earn a 75% interest in RDP by making cash payments in an aggregate amount of $1,350,000, plus a success payment of $800,000 upon exercise of the option, and spending $10,000,000 on exploration over eight years, with a firm commitment to spend $1,000,000 in year one, and delivering the Report. During the option period, Antofagasta will fund all exploration and Pacific Ridge will be the initial operator.
Once Antofagasta has earned its 75% interest, Pacific Ridge and Antofagasta will form a 25:75 joint venture. If either party’s interest in the joint venture falls below 10%, that party’s interest will be converted to a 2% NSR, half of which can be purchased by the other party for $4,500,000.
1 Fox, M., 1991, B.C. Government Assessment Report No. 21359.
2 Equitas Resources Corp. News Release – December 15, 2011
3 Aussant,C.H., 1997, B.C. Government Assessment Report No. 25122
4 Skeena Resources Ltd. News Release - July 28, 1992.
5 2011 Technical Report on the Day Property for Equitas Resources Corp.