NorthWest Copper (TSX-V: NWST) (OTCQX: NWCCF) is pleased to announce that drilling has started at our 100%-owned East Niv project in north-central British Columbia. East Niv is our third drill project to be activated in 2022, with drilling already in progress at Kwanika and Stardust where 26 holes have been completed this year. The East Niv program is approximately 3,400 m of drilling and six drill holes in the first phase for 2022.
2022 Exploration Update
Drilling at Kwanika started in March and at the adjacent Stardust project shortly after. East Niv drilling has just started (see below) and drilling at Lorraine is expected to commence in August 2022. NorthWest’s extensive drill program for 2022 plans for a total of over 30,000 metres over its portfolio – including Kwanika, Stardust, East Niv and Lorraine.
There are currently three drill rigs working at Kwanika and Stardust and approximately 10,000 metres of drilling have been completed at the two projects so far this year. Three holes have been completed at Stardust and 23 holes have been completed at Kwanika. Assay turnaround has been slower than expected, however we look forward to updating the market as the assay backlog is reduced and results become available.
The Kwanika drilling has been focused around the Kwanika Central Zone , both north and south of the mineralized footprint testing for potential expansion and for higher grade zones within the deposit. The extension targets are labelled in Figure 1. The more limited Stardust drilling to date has targeted incremental extensions of the high grade 421 Zone. Stardust drilling is not shown in detail, but Stardust is shown in relation to Kwanika in Figure 2.
In addition to the drilling, we have conducted two geophysical surveys at Kwanika. A Time Domain Electromagnetic (TDEM) geophysical survey is complete and we are currently finishing a 3D-Induced Polarization geophysical survey that will cover approximately 2,000 hectares. Interpretations of this work may identify new exploration targets. We will continue to provide updates on the progress of our exploration programs over the course of the next several months, including targets tested and results.
Startup of the 2022 East Niv Drill Program
The East Niv discovery was a key success for NorthWest in 2021. Drilling in 2021 outlined a mineralized footprint of 1.5 x 1.0 km, open in all directions. The strongest mineralization was intersected at the northwest edge of this footprint. Copper-gold mineralization was encountered in 8 of 10 holes drilled at East Niv in 2021, and all 10 drill holes contained strong to intense, sulphide-bearing alteration types consistent with those in major porphyry copper-gold deposits throughout the Quesnel-Stikine tectonic belt. Isotopic dates on intrusions and mineralization link East Niv to the late Triassic Takla Group, which along with the correlative Stuhini and Nicola Groups host most of the copper-gold porphyry systems in British Columbia. Porphyry mineralization in this belt commonly occurs in clusters and the numerous magnetic, induced polarization, and geochemical anomalies at East Niv provide multiple targets consistent with this pattern. Drilling in 2021 also encountered a gold-only mineralized zone with 41.00 metres of 1.24 g/t gold including 2.00 metres of 10.5 g/t gold within the porphyry footprint. The relationship between the gold-only zone and porphyry mineralization is unknown.
The 2022 program is designed to expand the known high-grade zone and test for additional copper-gold zones. Figure 3 shows holes planned to offset the strongest mineralization from 2021, currently open to the northwest. Figure 4 shows regional targets to test for additional porphyry copper-gold centres based on geophysical and geochemical anomalies. Our geologic knowledge of this new area is evolving and our exploration program in 2022 will remain focussed on understanding the scale of what we have found and the prospectivity of the region around it. We will continue to use helicopter support to maximize flexibility and minimize disturbance from drilling.
East Niv is a grassroots discovery, but also benefits from being close to existing infrastructure. The area of 2021 drilling is approximately 30 km from Centerra Gold’s Kemess Project which has a processing plant and tailings facilities under care and maintenance. The eastern edge of our East Niv claim block is crossed by a power and road corridor which continues north to Kemess.
“We started our exploration program very early this year with drilling at Kwanika in March” stated President and CEO Peter Bell. “We have not received assay results as early as hoped, however, we are still well ahead of our program in 2021 and expect the first portion of drill results to be available for release in the coming weeks.”
“NorthWest’s discovery of East Niv in 2021 was a significant milestone for the Company, creating a new hub of copper-gold mineralization” continued Mr. Bell. “We are extremely excited to begin the 2022 program which will focus on growing the high-grade zones and adding to the scale of the project. A grassroots discovery is rare enough but the proximity to infrastructure makes East Niv quite extraordinary. We look forward to updating the market as we progress the 2022 program.”
¹ See press release dated March 31, 2022 available at www.northwestcopper.ca and the Company’s profile at www.sedar.com.
² See NI 43-101 technical report titled “NI 43-101 Technical Report for the Kwanika Project Resource Estimate Update 2019,” dated April 17, 2019, filed under the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com
Investor Awareness Program
The Company is also pleased to announce it has engaged Machai Capital Inc. (“Machai”) to provide certain digital awareness services to the Company.
Machai is a marketing, advertising and public awareness firm based out of Vancouver, British Columbia, specializing in the mining and metals sector. Machai has agreed to comply with all applicable securities laws and the policies of the TSXV in providing services to the Company. The engagement is effective July 7, 2022 and has a term of six months. Under the terms of the agreement, Machai will be paid a total of CAD$50,000, to be paid in two equal instalments.
The Company and Machai act at arm’s length and to the knowledge of the Company, Machai does not currently own any securities of NorthWest. The engagement of Machai remains subject to the approval of the TSXV.
Disclaimer: Northwest is a paid marketing client, refer to full disclaimer below*