Douay Gold Project
Overview & Highlights
- Owned by 50/50 Joint Venture between Maple Gold and Agnico Eagle Mines Limited
- Located in one of the world’s best mining jurisdictions
- Established gold resource – see December 2019 RPA Resource Estimate below
- Virtually royalty free (just 1% NSR to IAMGOLD covering only 5% of resources)
- Excellent infrastructure and large operating mines in the region
- District-scale ~357km2 property with significant resource expansion and discovery potential
Location & Jurisdiction
The Douay Gold Project is located in Quebec, Canada, approximately 2.5 hour drive north of Val d’Or and 1.25 hours north of Amos via Highway 109. The pre-existing facilities are accessible via gravel road less than 10 minutes from the main highway, while a new 46-person camp has been built just west of the highway.
Quebec is renowned for its mineral content and has a total area of 1.7 million km2, of which only 1% is mined and only 5% is covered by mining rights. It is the second largest gold producing province in Canada and hosts some of the largest mining operations in the country, including the geologically similar Canadian Malartic mine. Canadian Malartic is jointly operated by Agnico Eagle Mines and Yamana Gold and is located 150 km south of the Douay Gold Project.
Consistently ranked amongst the top 10 mining jurisdictions in the world by the Fraser Institute’s Annual Survey of Mining Company, Quebec offers a number of competitive tax incentives created specifically for mineral exploration and development companies. For example, for every $1 in exploration spent, companies may receive up to $0.37 back in tax credits.
The project benefits from existing infrastructure, which includes:
Project Geology & Mineralization
The Douay Gold Project covers an area of more than ~357km² along the Casa Berardi Deformation Zone (“CBDZ”) within the prolific Abitibi Greenstone Belt (“AGB”). Douay belongs to the alkaline-intrusive-associated gold class of mineral deposits, which includes Beatty (>5.6Moz Au), Holt-McDermott (>1.3Moz Au), and Canadian Malartic (>17Moz Au) in the AGB. The area is also prospective for the more typical AGB orogenic style (structurally controlled gold-quartz veins and veinlets) of gold deposit as well as for volcanogenic massive sulphide (“VMS”) deposits.
The Douay project is underlain by a northern assemblage of mafic and felsic pyroclastic and sedimentary rocks (Taïbi Grp), a central assemblage consisting of basalts, co-genetic gabbros with lesser felsic volcanic rocks (Cartwright Hills Grp) intruded by the 6.5 x 2km Douay alkaline intrusive complex (syenite to monzonite, alkali gabbro and carbonatite) with its associated gold mineralization; and a southern assemblage consisting mostly of basalts (also Cartwright Hills Grp) with siliceous-chemical sediments and chlorite-sulphide alteration zones that may be associated with VMS style of mineralization. The volcanic stratigraphy strikes WNW to ESE whereas the major regional fault zones trend E-W or NW-SE. Existing drill data shows multiple higher-grade zones, including Douay West, within and near the Douay intrusive complex. In addition, there are further underexplored known and possible syenitic bodies elsewhere on the property.
Fe-carbonate-albite-pyrite alteration assemblages may be associated with higher gold values, generally above 5 g/t gold. Fractured syenite containing irregular fine pyrite veinlets in addition to disseminated pyrite, encompassing altered basalt fragments and magnetite-rich zones typically yields 0.1 to 1.5 g/t gold or more over intervals from tens of metres to over 150m.
Gold mineralization appears to be associated with the following features:
- Proximity of a major fault to provide a plumbing system and structural permeability.
- Interlayering of different lithological units, especially mafic with felsic units with syenitic intrusions. These are thought to provide rheological contrasts to focus deformation, alteration and mineralization.
- The presence of chemically favourable mafic units providing iron for sulphidation of mafic minerals.
- The presence (for proximal style of mineralisation) or nearby (for more distal style) syenitic intrusions, as bodies, dyke swarms or narrow injections, interpreted to represent the source of metals and sulphur.
- Sulphides averaging 2% but varying from trace to 5%.
The Douay Gold Project has an established National Instrument 43-101 mineral resource estimate of 8.6 million tonnes grading 1.52 g/t Au for 422,000 contained ounces of gold in the Indicated category and 71.2 million tonnes grading 1.03 g/t Au for 2.35 million contained ounces of gold in the Inferred category using a cut-off grade of 0.45 g/t Au for open-pit Mineral resources and a cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t Au for underground Mineral Resources (December 6, 2019 RPA report entitled "Technical Report on the Douay Gold Project, Northwestern Quebec, Canada"). See table below for a detailed breakdown:
- CIM (2014) definitions were followed for Mineral Resources.
- Mineral Resources are reported at an elevated cut-off grade of 0.45 g/t Au for open-pit Mineral Resources and a cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t Au for underground Mineral Resources.
- The Whittle pit shell used to estimate Mineral Resources used a long-term gold price of US$1,500 per ounce, however the implied gold price for the Mineral Resources reported at the elevated cut-off grade would be significantly lower.
- A US$/C$ exchange rate of 0.7, and a gold recovery of 90% were used.
- A minimum mining width of 3 m was used.
- Open pit resources are reported within a preliminary pit shell.
- Bulk density is 2.71 t/m3 or 2.82 t/m3 depending on the zone.
- Numbers may not add due to rounding.
- Mineral Resources for Douay have been updated using data available to October 23, 2019.
JV Partnership & Exploration Potential
As per a joint venture Definitive Agreement signed on February 2, 2021, Agnico would provide a total of C$18 million of funding over four years for exploration expenditures at the Douay and Joutel properties, which will be allocated based on management committee budgets. Agnico and Maple Gold will contribute proportionately for expenditures thereafter.
Other terms of the joint venture include:
- Maple Gold’s exploration team will be supported by Agnico Eagle’s top-tier technical team which has vast experience and knowledge of the Abitibi as well as access to best-in-class software and tools.
- Agnico and Maple Gold will jointly fund an additional C$500,000 in exploration of VMS targets located on the western portion of the Douay Project.
- Agnico to support Maple Gold in its pursuit of third-party project financing for the development phase; and
- Maple Gold retains a 2% NSR on the Douay property with aggregate buyback provisions of C$40 million.
The Douay Project resource remains open in multiple directions laterally with significant resource expansion potential. Significant drill gaps of hundreds of metres remain throughout the 6-by-2 km resource area, with many areas in and around the resource underexplored. Maple Gold and Agnico share a common vision for realizing the exploration potential at the Douay God Project. With close collaboration and by employing modern approaches to exploration, management believes there is strong potential for expanded mineral resources and new gold discoveries across the district-scale property package.
Underground Exploration Potential*
The resource is also open at depth, with known higher-grade zones open down plunge and the vertical depth of all drilling at Douay averaging only 350 metres. RPA has stated that the potential tonnage and grade of additional underground mineralisation below the new pit shells could be 10 to 30 million tonnes for approximately 0.5 to 1.5 million ounces gold within the currently drilled vertical extent. Figure 2 shows the RPA reporting shapes in green (307,000 Inferred ounces averaging 1.75 g/t Au), as well as the mineralised blocks at various grades below the pit shells that were not included in the reporting shapes, therefore, not reported in the current Mineral Resource statement, due to insufficient drilling. The Company’s recent results from the single 531 Zone drill-hole during 2019 (included intercepts of 16m @ 4.58 g/t Au, 9m @ 4.92 g/t Au and 9m @ 4.71 g/t Au – see press releases June 5, 2019) demonstrate the exploration potential for further higher-grade mineralization. The black ellipses in Figure 2 below highlight further exploration potential at depth.
Figure 2: NW-SE longitudinal vertical section view (all zones) showing distribution of below-pit shell underground blocks above 1 g/t Au cut-off. Only blocks within reporting shapes (green shaded area) form part of inferred underground Mineral Resource. Black ellipses point to undrilled exploration potential at depth, which is in addition to potential contributions from infill drilling in areas with current blocks
*The potential quantity and grade are conceptual in nature as there has been insufficient exploration to define a Mineral Resource along strike from the resource area, and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the target being delineated as a Mineral Resource. The underground exploration potential estimated outside of the resource reporting pit shell is based on areas of mineralisation intersected by drilling, but not necessarily supported by two drill holes, which was required for Inferred Mineral Resources, plus the immediate down-plunge extension of known zones of mineralisation.
The Mineral Resources information disclosed on this page have been estimated by Ms. Dorota El Rassi, P.Eng., an employee of RPA who is independent of Maple Gold. By virtue of her education and relevant experience, Ms. El Rassi is a "Qualified Person" for the purpose of National Instrument 43-101. The Mineral Resources have been classified in accordance with CIM Definition Standards for Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves (May, 2014). Ms. El Rassi, P.Eng. has read and approved the contents of this material as it pertains to the disclosed Mineral Resource estimates.
Further information about key assumptions, parameters and methods used to estimate the mineral resources, as well as legal, political, environmental or other risks that may affect the mineral resource estimate will be included in a NI 43-101 Technical Report to be filed on Sedar within 45 days following the date of the news release filed on October 24, 2019.
The scientific and technical data contained on this webpage was reviewed and prepared under the supervision of Fred Speidel, M. Sc, P. Geo., Vice-President Exploration, of Maple Gold. Mr. Speidel is a Qualified Person under National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects. Mr. Speidel has verified the data related to the exploration information disclosed in this news release through his direct participation in the work.
The first gold discovery at the Douay Gold Project was made by Inco Ltd. in 1976. Drilling prior to 2004 was focused primarily on smaller higher-grade zones with more recent campaigns defining a larger intrusive related gold system.
The Douay Gold Project hosts numerous high-grade gold occurrences within larger low-grade envelopes of mineralization. Visible gold occasionally occurs in quartz veinlets and the table below highlights some of the high-grade results reported from previous drill campaigns:
Unless otherwise stated, the scientific and technical data contained within this website was reviewed and approved by Fred Speidel, M.Sc., P.Geo., Vice-President, Exploration, who is responsible for ensuring that the geologic information provided on this website is accurate and acts as a “qualified person” under National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.