Regional exploration is paying off for Challenger Gold, with the identification of several additional targets at its 2.8-million-ounce Hualilan gold project in San Juan, Argentina.

The ongoing regional exploration program is designed to explore for Hualilan repeats along the 30 kilometres of known strike, given discoveries like Hualilan seldom occur in isolation.

While the program is still less than 40% complete, several new target areas have been delineated for follow up:

  • El Penon: located 10 kilometres northwest of the Hualilan MRE;
  • Andacollo: covering the strike extend of Hualilan over 2 kilometres to the north;
  • Hualilan up dip: 300 metres east of the MRE along the most of the 2.2 kilometres strike; and
  • Magnata Fault West: located 2.5 km west of the MRE boundary.

The regional stream sediment sampling program covering 70km2 is now 50% complete with sampling identifying a new mineralised system 2.5 kilometres west of the Magnata Fault covered by recently discovered historical alluvial workings.

The company is also extending its ground magnetic survey data to cover the 25km2 immediately south of the project, which will define drill targets associated with high-grade stream sediment sampling 10 kilometres north of Hualilan.

Drilling planning the next step

“Our program is the first detailed exploration focused outside the historical mineralisation conducted at Hualilan so it is not a surprise that it continues to generate several new targets,” Challenger Gold (ASX:CEL) MD Kris Knauer said.

“We eagerly await the magnetic data at El Penon where we have found plus 50 g/t gold grades, at surface.

“This should allow us to image the intrusives at depth and plan our first drill program to test El Penon.

In addition, the program has identified a new mineralisation centre 2 kilometres west of, and on trend with, the Magnata Fault.

“Stream sediment sampling produced an anomaly up to 100 times background with reconnaissance field work identifying a series of old workings extending over 500 metres which is in the process of being mapped and sampled,” Knauer said.

“Additionally, we have a large backlog of samples for which assay results are pending.”

To date, grid mapping and rock chipping/soil sampling covering the strike extensions 4km north and south of Hualilan is around 20% complete with assays pending for the majority of this program.

Satellite data flags more targets

Challenger has acquired the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer (ASTER) satellite data covering the entire 564 km2 district scale footprint at Hualilan.

And first pass processing of the data has generated targets to be followed up with surface exploration which include:

  • A 2 kilometre strike zone of interpreted iron, sericite and clay alteration in a thrust repeat of the San Juan Limestone near the contact with overlying Silurian age sedimentary units. This is a similar stratigraphic position to the mineralisation at Hualilan; and
  • A second 2 kilometre strike zone of altered limestone with narrow iron-rich units which is located 10 kilometres along strike to the north from the first zone.

There is no known exploration completed over the above two areas and a field program to investigate the source of the anomalies is being planned.




This article was developed in collaboration with Challenger Gold Limited, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.


This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.