The advanced stage Heva-Hosco exploration property is located in the Joannes Township, 20 km (12.4 miles) east of Rouyn-Noranda, Quebec. The property is up to 3 km wide (1.8 miles) and extends east-west for more than 8 km (5 miles) along the Cadillac-Larder Lake break (fault). The project comprises 102 mining claims owned 100% by Hecla Quebec covering 3,854 hectares (14.8 sq. miles).
The property hosts two distinct gold deposits, the free-milling (gold, pyrrhotite, pyrite) mineralization at the Heva deposit and the refractory (gold, arsenopyrite, pyrrhotite, pyrite) mineralization at the Hosco deposit. Both deposits had limited historic production during the 1950’s estimated at 20,000 oz gold. The Heva and Hosco deposits were drilled extensively between 2007 and 2013 totalling 312,821m (1,026,315 ft.) in 1156 holes.
The Heva-Hosco property is located along the Cadillac-Larder Lake Break between two major mining camps, the Rouyn-Noranda mining district which is well known for its base metal and gold deposits, and the Bousquet-Cadillac gold camp, which hosts the world-class Laronde-Dumagami and Doyon gold mines.
Mineralization at the Heva and Hosco deposits consists of finely disseminated sulfides within minor quartz veining located within a sedimentary unit on both sides of a branch of the Cadillac-Larder Lake Break, near the intersection with the North-East Davidson Creek Fault. The mineralized corridor at Heva-Hosco extends along a 5 km (3.1 mile) east-west trend that has been followed down to a depth of 400 meters (1,300 feet) and remains open down dip.
At Hosco, gold mineralization is developed on both sides of the Cadillac Break and forms a 200 meter- (656 feet) wide corridor consisting of three mineralized lenses parallel to the fault and dipping 55° to the north. Lenses located south of Cadillac break contains silica-albite-biotite alterations whereas lenses at north of fault contains tourmaline-biotite-silica alteration. At Heva, gold mineralization is closely related to the Cadillac Break (fault) and forms a 10 to 60 meter- (197 feet) wide corridor typically affected by strong tourmaline alteration. Dips along the 2.5 km (1.5 miles) long structure varies from 600 to 700. Quartz veining is generally more dominant than Hosco, and the sulfide content is lower. Gold grades correlate with fine visible gold grains in quartz veins and host rocks.
The Heva-Hosco property includes other under-explored gold occurrences as Joanna Nord and Zoe. Best assay results on Joanna Nord and Zoe returned 7.9 g/t (0.23 oz/ton) gold over 3 meters (9.8 feet) and 5.7 g/t (0.17 oz/ton) gold over 1.5 meters (4.9 feet), respectively. In addition, higher gold grades have been discovered on Alexandria area; some samples returned Au grades between 5.5 g/t and 13.7 g/t (0.16 and 0.40 oz/ton) gold.
Information with respect to proven and probable ore reserves, measured, and inferred resources is set forth below. In November 2013, Hecla Québec released the following NI 43-101 resources for Heva and Hosco deposits.
|(As of December 31, 2020 unless otherwise noted)|
|Heva||(000)||(oz/ton)||(oz/ton)||(%)||(%)||(000 oz)||(000 oz)||(Tons)||(Tons)|
|Measured Resources (1)||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-||-|
|Indicated Resources (1)||1,266||-||0.06||-||-||-||76||-||-|
|Inferred Resources (1)||2,787||-||0.08||-||-||-||216||-||-|
|Measured Resources (1)||-||–||-||–||–||–||-||–||–|
|Indicated Resources (1)||29,287||–||0.04||–||–||–||1,202||–||–|
|Inferred Resources (1)||17,726||-||0.04||-||-||-||663||-||-|
- (footnotes)Note: All estimates are in-situ. Resources are exclusive of reserves. Totals may not represent the sum of parts due to rounding.
(1) Measured, Indicated and Inferred resources are based on $1,500 gold. The resources are in-situ without external dilution and material loss at a cut-off grade of 0.01 oz/ton gold (0.33 t/tonne) for open pit and 0.088 oz/ton gold (3.0 g/tonne) for underground.
Reporting requirements in the United States for disclosure of mineral properties as of December 31, 2020 and earlier are governed by the SEC’s Securities Act Industry Guide 7, entitled “Description of Property by Issuers Engaged or to be Engaged in Significant Mining Operations” (Guide 7). Effective January 1, 2021, the SEC has issued new rules rescinding Guide 7. Mining companies are not required to comply with the new rules until the first fiscal year beginning on or after January 1, 2021. Thus, the Company will be required to comply with the new rules when filing its Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended December 31, 2021. The Company is also a “reporting issuer” under Canadian securities laws, which require estimates of mineral resources and reserves to be prepared in accordance with Canadian National Instrument 43-101 (NI 43-101). NI 43-101 requires all disclosure of estimates of potential mineral resources and reserves to be disclosed in accordance with its requirements. Such Canadian information is included herein to satisfy the Company’s “public disclosure” obligations under Regulation FD of the SEC and to provide U.S. holders with ready access to information publicly available in Canada.
Reporting requirements in the United States for disclosure of mineral properties under Guide 7 compared to the new SEC rules (Item 1300 of Regulation S-K under the Securities and Exchange Act of 1934) and the requirements in Canada under NI 43-101 standards are substantially different. This document contains a summary of certain estimates of the Company, not only of Proven and Probable reserves within the meaning of Guide 7, but also of mineral resource and mineral reserve estimates estimated in accordance with the new SEC rules and definitional standards of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum referred to in NI 43-101. Under Guide 7, the term “reserve” means that part of a mineral deposit that can be economically and legally extracted or produced at the time of the reserve determination. The term “economically”, as used in the definition of reserve, means that profitable extraction or production has been established or analytically demonstrated to be viable and justifiable under reasonable investment and market assumptions. The term “legally”, as used in the definition of reserve, does not imply that all permits needed for mining and processing have been obtained or that other legal issues have been completely resolved. However, for a reserve to exist, Hecla must have a justifiable expectation, based on applicable laws and regulations, that issuance of permits or resolution of legal issues necessary for mining and processing at a particular deposit will be accomplished in the ordinary course and in a timeframe consistent with Hecla’s current mine plans. The terms “Measured resources”, “Indicated resources,” and “Inferred resources” are mining terms as defined in accordance with the new SEC rules and NI 43-101. These terms are not defined under Guide 7 and prior to January 1, 2021, were not normally permitted to be used in reports and registration statements filed with the SEC in the United States, except where required to be disclosed by foreign law. The term “resource” does not equate to the term “reserve”. Under Guide 7, the material described herein as “Indicated resources” and “Measured resources” would be characterized as “mineralized material” and is permitted to be disclosed in tonnage and grade only, not ounces. The category of “inferred resources” is not recognized by Guide 7. Investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of the mineral deposits in such categories will ever be converted into Proven or Probable reserves. “Resources” have a great amount of uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any part of such a “resource” will ever be upgraded to a higher category or will ever be economically extracted. Investors are cautioned not to assume that all or any part of a “resource” exists or is economically or legally mineable. Investors are also especially cautioned that the mere fact that such resources may be referred to in ounces of silver and/or gold, rather than in tons of mineralization and grades of silver and/or gold estimated per ton, is not an indication that such material will ever result in mined ore which is processed into commercial silver or gold.
Over the coming years, additional exploration and drilling will be focused on the high priority Heva deposit area due to its free milling metallurgical nature. This exploration and drilling at Heva will focus on expanding resources at depth along projections of higher-grade shoots as well as along strike. Future exploration work will also target extensions of the Joanna Nord and Zoe gold occurrences, and Alexandria showing.