Chakana Copper (TSX-V: PERU) CEO David Kelley on Drill Program Commencing in August at the Soledad Copper-Gold-Silver Project in Peru
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the President and CEO of Chakana Copper (TSX-V: PERU)(OTC: CHKKF), Mr. David Kelley. Dave, how are you this morning?
David Kelley: I'm doing great, Gerardo. Thank you.
Gerardo Del Real: When we spoke last time, I congratulated you on the fact that it looked like we were finally going to be able to get on the ground and get back to drilling the Soledad project, the most prospective parts of a project, frankly, that's already proven to have scale, grade, gold, copper and silver. Now it seems like we're finally going to start drilling. I know a piece of the property that you're extremely excited about. You had some news going over that program. Can we talk about that a bit?
David Kelley: Yeah. If you recall previous news releases, we expanded the property three-fold. We're over 3,000 hectares now. That expansion gave us some really prospective terrain within the project. This new permit that we have and the announcement of the startup of this next 15,000 meters of drilling is allowing us to drill in areas that we have not drilled before.
The targets are just as impressive, in some cases even more impressive than what we've drilled to date. We're super excited about starting the drill program and continuing to do what we've done in the past, which is really deliver some very spectacular drill results with high-grade copper, gold and silver.
Gerardo Del Real: We touched a bit last time on the resource estimate, which I know was delayed, obviously, because of the delay with the permit and then COVID. Now it seems like according to the release, you're also going to be doing some surface channel sampling of multiple Breccia pipes. Can we talk about that and how that's going to influence that resource estimate?
David Kelley: Yeah. That work program will actually start the week of August 3rd. We'll get the team up there in place and start doing that channel sampling. Then the following week we'll start up the drilling, once platforms are constructed and access has all been sorted out.
That channel sampling is really important to give us the top footprint of the mineralization on the Breccia pipes that we've already drilled. We'll continue that right into the Breccia pipes we will be drilling. It just augments the drill data that we have.
If you recall, the shape of our Breccia pipes are cylindrical or oval-shaped bodies that persist to considerable depth. But the top part of those, it's difficult to drill that. There's basically a shadow zone within the top part of the Breccia pipe where the drill can't get access to. The best way to accomplish the sampling of that is with channel sampling. That'll be a nice addition to the samples from drill core that we already have. We already know that these tops of the Breccia pipes are gold-rich. We generally have multi-gram gold right at surface. So we're expecting that to be a significant enhancement to the ultimate resource that we'll put out.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. You're planning a 15,000-meter drill program. I know you have a rig already onsite. Will it be just one rig throughout the entire program, or do you plan on adding additional rigs if they become available or necessary?
David Kelley: Well, they certainly are available and we do think they will be necessary. Our goal is to get the drilling started with one drill rig, probably drill for about two months and then based on the results that we get, pull in a second rig to primarily do infill drilling, kind of the inferred resource density that we've determined is necessary to get to that inferred category, and let the other drill rig continue to do kind of the scout test drilling to get us into these new zones that require infill drilling.
That's the general plan right now. That could always change based on results, but start with one rig then bring in the second rig when we have too much drilling that needs to be done on the infill side, and then try to finish up the drill program with the two rigs.
Gerardo Del Real: The last time we spoke, Dave, we talked about how you were being responsible in your approach in regards to COVID-19 and making sure that you acted in a way that was conscious of the environment. The local community is a very supportive community. You wanted to make sure you were safe and respectful. How has that developed and how is that coming along now that you're finally ready to get the rig turning again?
David Kelley: Yeah. We're continuing to work on that. In fact, our team is meeting today to go over all the COVID-19 work protocols that we're putting in place. Obviously, every employee and contractor will be tested before they go to site to make sure they're healthy when they arrive and then they'll be monitored daily. All of our work arrangements and plans are taking in the concepts of social distancing and hygiene and PPE and that type of thing. We're going to be very, very vigilant on that.
The official lockdown in Peru is ending at the end of this month, July 31st. They're obviously encouraging businesses to start up. But at the same time, we know that the infection numbers are increasing in Peru, especially in the highly populated cities. The cities along the coast are the ones that are being worst hit. We think we can operate in our environment. Infection numbers are relatively low. With the vigilance of our team putting these work protocols into place, I think we can manage that carefully. It will be something that we'll be monitoring really on a daily basis.
Gerardo Del Real: Do you have a feel for the turnaround time with the assay labs? Have you spoken with them?
David Kelley: Yeah, I've touched base with ALS, our lab provider in Lima. They are open for business. They're estimating about a two-week turnaround time, subject to sample flow as other companies start up. That's good news for us. That's the kind of service we've always had with them so that seems to be right on track with where we need that to be.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent. Dave, anything else you'd like to add? I look forward to having you back on as soon as you define specific targets. I know you mentioned in the release that you'll do so as soon as the rig is turning. I'm looking forward to that because you're not short on targets. I think you have, what, something like 93?
David Kelley: Yeah. There's 92 total targets on the property and I've always said we're just scratching the surface on this project so far. These first few targets are really spectacular and I look forward to profiling those in future conversations with you and news releases.
I would like to acknowledge the significant time it's taken us to get here. There's been lots of challenges but we're right on the cusp of starting this new drill program. I appreciate all the patience that our shareholders and stakeholders have had.
Gerardo Del Real: Exciting times. Thanks again, Dave.
David Kelley: Thank you, Gerardo.