Silver Mines’ Bowdens interests turning to gold

Silver Mines’ Bowdens interests turning to gold

The Bowdens silver project near Mudgee in central Western NSW is taking on a more golden hue with Silver Mines of Australia (ASX:SVL) surprising on Monday with news of a major new area of ​​interest.

The new, more gold-bearing area mapped out is outside of the open pit mining that Silver Mines of Australia has chosen in their current planning and approval processes with state and local governments.

Bowdens is already the largest undeveloped silver prospect in Australia and the company plans to mine it via an open cut operation, but drilling in and around the planned mine area over the past year has yielded new grades of silver, lead and some zinc, but much intriguing gold assays that suggest there is something to mine.

In its ASX statement on Monday, Silver Mines said that after releasing a first underground mineral resource last year, “exploration has shifted to testing extensions of mineralization outside the current planned open pit design and testing for higher grades within the open cut well design.”

“Several areas have been targeted for expansion, including in the north at the Main, Aegean and Northwest zones and in and south of the planned open pit where anomalous gold has been identified.”

Silver Mines said it had “received significant assay results from ongoing diamond drilling around the Bowdens silver deposit and from a re-assay program of historic drill pulp samples for gold.”

“The first underground mineral resource estimate at Bowdens Silver included gold in the project for the first time.

“Gold has mainly been identified (previously) within the Bundarra zone which is directly below the planned open pit.

“Gold was also discovered in 2021 at shallow depths in the south and adjacent to the Bowdens silver deposit, along with high grades of silver mineralization. This area has become an additional target for gold and silver exploration drilling during 2022 and is called the Southern Gold Zone.

“The Southern Gold Zone is currently defined at 300 meters in strike and 200 meters in width and between 15 and 85 meters in thickness. The zone is from near surface to the south of Bowdens and is outside the currently planned open pit.

“The Southern Gold Zone will be assessed in future well optimization studies.

“Results were received from diamond drill holes BD22042 and BD22024, which were drilled along the strike of BD22029 north (180m) and south (55m) respectively. BD22029 yielded the highest and widest grade gold interval to date at the Bowdens silver project of 32.6 meters at 2.09 g/t gold equivalent,” said Silver Mines.

Additionally, the so-called Aegean Zone – which forms part of the recently estimated underground resource totaling 42.9 million ounces of silver equivalent – ​​is throwing up interesting intersections of its own.

The zone extends from the base of the proposed Bowdens Silver open pit, located below the Main Zone. “This mineralized zone is high grade silver dominant at depth and is open to the north and east. The zone has a strike of 200 meters, is 100 meters wide and typically 50 meters thick.”

The company said the best results from drilling here are 16 meters @114grams to the tonne silver equivalent (89g/t silver, 0.07% zinc and 0.64% lead) from 251 metres.”

Silver Mines said the Aegean Zone and Main Zone both remain open to the north and dip to the northwest with drilling underway to define further extensions.

The market was unimpressed, sending the shares down 4% to 22 cents.

Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a financial journalist and TV producer for over 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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