Vancouver – Joint-venture partners Fortuna Silver Mines (FVI-V, FVITF-O) and Continuum Resources (CNU-V, CUUEF-O) are finding multiple mineralized horizons within two zones at the San Jose gold-silver project in southern Mexico.
The project, in the Taviche silver district of southern Oaxaca, hosts the Trinidad vein system and the San Ignacio zone. Small-scale miners exploited some 800 metres of Trinidad, to a depth of 180 metres, but the JV-partners have been working to expand the system. As for San Ignacio, which sits 800 metre to the south on the same vein system, the partners only discovered the zone in late 2006 and have since punched 23 holes into it to probe its potential.
The most recent results included five drill holes in the Trinidad zone and six in San Ignacio. In Trinidad, hole 84 intersected multiple mineralized zones. From 491 metres the hole returned 5.2 metres grading 3.07 grams gold and 446 grams silver; from 503 metres depth the drill cut 8 metres grading 9.37 grams gold and 487 grams silver; from 517 metres the core averaged 1.13 grams gold and 258 grams silver over 1.1 metres; and from 578 metres downhole the drill pulled 4.7 metres grading 0.4 gram gold and 110 grams silver.
Holes from an earlier set of results also showed the presence of multiple mineralized zones. For example, Hole 79 returned 34 metres grading 1.41 grams gold and 143 grams silver from 441 metres downhole followed by 2.4 metres grading 13.6 grams gold and 1,039 grams silver from 482 metres depth.
At San Ingacio recent results have shown short, well-mineralized intersections. Hole 90 cut 2.13 grams gold and 276 grams silver over 1 metre from 167 metres downhole. Hole 103 pulled 1.8 metres grading 1.26 grams gold and 194 grams silver from 69 metres depth, followed by 1.4 metres grading 0.72 gram gold and 113 grams silver from 77 metres depth.
One of the best holes at San Ignacio came out in mid-2007: hole 60 returned 25 metres grading 10.9 grams gold and 588 grams silver from 130 metres depth, followed by 3.8 metres averaging 17.6 grams gold and 637 grams silver from 144 metres depth.
Assay results are still pending for nine holes in the Trinidad zone and 17 holes in the San Ignacio zone.
Mineralization at San Jose consists of silver sulphosalts, native silver, and gold occurring within epithermal quartz veins and breccias, hosted in andesitic volcanics.
A resource estimate in March 2007 pegged indicated resources for the Trinidad zone at 1.47 million tonnes grading 262.2 grams silver and 2.2 grams gold. Inferred resources add 3.9 million tonnes at an average grade of 260.6 grams silver and 2.6 grams gold. An updated resource estimate is expected by mid-2008.
As part of their plan to advance the project to production in the near future, early last year the JV partners purchased the plant that previously processed ore from San Jose. The fully permitted operation is located about 12 km from the deposit and has a 150-tonne-per-day capacity. Upgrades are underway to bring the capacity up to 360 tonnes per day.
Fortuna, which holds 76% of San Jose, moved up 6 on the latest drill results to close at $2.58. The company has a 52-week trading range of $2.00 to $3.96 and has 81 million shares issued. Continuum remain unchanged at 21.5 on the news.