• First Lithium wraps up its Stage 1 drilling program at the potential Tier 1 lithium Blakala prospect in Mali
  • The site’s pegmatite prospectivity continues to grow along strike and at depth
  • A fresh drilling program is in the works with a maiden JORC resource also in the pipeline


Special Report: The strong lithium prospectivity narrative continues to grow for Mali-focused explorer First Lithium with more significant spodumene intersections reported from Stage 1 drilling at Blakala with an expanded hunt also in the works. 

First Lithium’s (ASX: FL1) ongoing pegmatite exploration and drilling expansion at the Blakala prospect in the Gouana permit in Mali is continuing to shape the site’s Tier 1 lithium potential.

In fact, Blakala is just one of two Tier 1 priority lithium targets in Mali ranked by CSA Global back in 2008, the other being Leo Lithium’s (ASX:LEO) 211Mt Goulamina project.

Today, the company notes that it plans to expand its search at the site, amid the completion of a further 14 diamond drill holes and seven RC pre-collar holes finished by diamond drilling tails.

Blakala diamond drilling lab results made high-grade headlines for FL1 in December, returning a top hit of 111m @ 1.57% Li2O from 33m, including 10m @ 3.39% Li2O and 5m @ 4.43% Li2O (34m to 39m) within this zone.

And, at that time, channel sampling returned results such as 1.94% Li2O over 19m, 1.87% Li2O over 18m and 1.9% Li2O over 22m that have validated the Eastern and Western pegmatites as additional high-grade and wide spodumene mineralised targets.


Eastern promise

FL1 has had its lens trained on Blakala’s eastern pegmatite action lately, with a strike extended to the north, including with multiple mineralised pegmatite intersections totalling 43.74m thickness. These remain open along strike and at depth.

Diamond drilling has also been targeting the south of the eastern pegmatite body, with multiple mineralised pegmatite intersections totalling 34.36m thickness in that direction, also remaining open along strike and at depth.

Meanwhile, the seven RC holes intersected several well mineralised pegmatites of the site’s main pegmatite body, totalling 366.32m. That includes an intersection up to 40.37m thickness at depth and under the first lot of completed diamond holes.

An additional 3,091m has been drilled in these further 21 holes, with 7,099.2m of drilling now completed all up for the site’s Stage 1 drilling program.

First Lithium (ASX:FL1)
FL1 has completed Stage 1 drilling at Blakala in Mali. Pic: Supplied (FL1)


‘A great base to build a significant mineral resource’

What happens next? Sitting on hands? Nope.

An expanded drilling program is now being planned at Blakala which is set to get under way “imminently”, with the aim of building on the maiden JORC resource.

That’s taking shape and is expected to manifest in Q2 this year, based on full results from Stage 1 drilling.

FL1 managing director Venkatesh Padala noted: “The completion of the Stage 1 drilling program has occurred on time and on budget and has delineated the mineralised pegmatite at Blakala with great success.

“Mineralised spodumene bearing pegmatite of over 1,600m has provided FL1 a great base to build a significant mineral resource and the company will focus on delivering a maiden JORC on the project in 2024.

“The expanded drilling program being planned will commence as soon as possible with up to five diamond and RC rigs in operation to extend the identification of the pegmatite given it remains open in all directions and at depth.”



This article was developed in collaboration with First Lithium, 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.