Well, I never (never): Gascoyne turns key gold discovery into a 721,000oz monster
In less than 12 months, Gascoyne’s Never Never deposit has become one of Australia’s most exciting new gold finds with resources more than doubling to 721,000oz at 5.85 g/t.
It was just last year in June that Gascoyne Resources (ASX:GCY) was sharing the news of impressive hits such as 31m at 2.5g/t gold from 6m out of the under-explored Never Never prospect.
Unbeknownst to the company at the time, these hits were just a foretaste of a mammoth, high grade, stand-alone deposit sitting right at its doorstep, only 1km away from GCY’s 2.5Mtpa processing plant at the Dalgaranga gold mine.
Within no time, a healthy maiden resource estimate of 303,000oz at 4.64 g/t was established as the company shifted its focus toward targeted and cost-effective exploration.
Now, 23 diamond drill holes and 16 RC holes later, systematic in-fill drilling has more than doubled the contained ounces from the previous MRE to a whopping 721,200 ounces at 5.85 g/t, with an average exploration cost per ounce of just A$13/oz.
Given that MinEx Consulting had estimated in 2019 that the discovery cost for the global gold industry between 2009-2018 was US$62 per ounce of gold, this places Never Never well below the cost curve for discovering gold resources.
Speaking to Stockhead, GCY managing director and former founding member of Northern Star Resources (ASX:NSR) Simon Lawson says the extremities of the deposit still haven’t been found.
“One of the stand-out features of the updated MRE is the phenomenal endowment of the orebody,” he explains.
“The underground component of Never Never averages 1,590 ounces per vertical metre over a short strike length with favourable geometry.
“For all the underground miners out there, that should equate to very profitable mining in the future – particularly given that 1,000oz per vertical metre is generally seen as a strong benchmark for underground mines,” he adds.
“We’ve also managed to convert 76% of those ounces into Indicated Resource classification, so more than three quarters of those ounces over 540,000 ounces is going to be in the Indicated category, which is the high confidence category.”
The project is now a far more worthy system to peddle before investors with the substantial increase in tonnes, grade, and ounces at Never Never increasing the total gold resource endowment at Dalgaranga to 16.70Mt at 2.2g/t for 1,183,300 ounces of gold.
Lawson joined GCY after three years as managing director of Firefly Resources, a junior exploration company that merged with Gascoyne in 2021.
“I removed a few technical roadblocks and asked the team what they wanted to do, which was to drill right in front of the main low-grade deposit,” he says.
“We then made the discovery – the extension to that low-grade deposit – and as we continued to drill further north, we hit a much higher grade on the main deposit.
“When you’re drilling 50-60 metre type intersections at anywhere between 7 and 12.5 grams, people start to show interest…you don’t usually find those kinds of deposits, especially not right in front of a processing plant that’s already been built.”
Given the strategic location of the relatively new processing plant sitting at the centre of this resource inventory, Lawson says the company can now see a clear pathway to developing a very solid +5-year-mine plan.
“That said, our immediate focus remains on adding more high-grade ounces with a new phase of surface drilling set to commence in August.
“This drilling will target strategic extensions of Never Never itself and, perhaps more importantly, commence testing a series of shallower Never Never ‘look-alike’ targets we have identified along strike to the north and south of the deposit.”
This article was developed in collaboration with Gascoyne Resources, 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.