Alt Resources (ASX: ARS) is advancing its plans to evolve its Mt Ida gold project in Western Australia into a promising gold hub, with an expanded exploration drilling program scheduled for this quarter.
In its March quarterly activities report, released this week, the company said the applications have been approved with reverse circulation drilling scheduled to commence in the 2019 second quarter.
To fund this and other upcoming work programs, the company this week announced a share purchase plan and the issue of a convertible note to raise almost $2.5 million.
Alt’s announced share purchase plan offers eligible shareholders the ability to buy up to $15,000 worth of shares at $0.024 per share to raise up to $1.99 million.
The company said funds raised from the issue will be used for resource and exploration drilling at its flagship Mt Ida project, as well as pit optimisation and development of the maiden reserves, plus as working capital.
In addition, Alt announced it has entered into a convertible note deed with Patina Resources to raise a further $500,000.
The convertible note is for a 12-month term with interest charged at 10% per annum, with $10,000 to be prepaid in the form of paid shares at $0.025 on the execution date.
The funding is expected to be used for additional working capital and exploration drilling at the Mt Ida and Bottle Creek projects.
Alt chief executive officer James Anderson said the company has had a long-standing relationship with Patina Resources, which is a “great supporter of the industry and small exploration companies in general”.
Shepherd’s Bush prospect
Several areas of the Quinn’s assets have been confirmed as immediate exploration targets including the Shepherd’s Bush prospect, which lies 2km south of the company’s Spotted Dog South and Tim’s Find existing gold resources.
The Shepherd’s Bush gold-in-soil anomaly was discovered by La Mancha Resources in 2006, with initial drilling confirming gold mineralisation.
The prospect appears to lie within the same mineralised structure as the Tim’s Find and Spotted Dog South deposits, with Alt’s follow-up RC program expected to drill along strike from the nearby existing resources.
Bottle Creek progress towards feasibility
During the March quarter, Alt was also heavily focused on its Bottle Creek asset, which lies adjacent to the Quinn’s and Mt Ida South leases within the wider Mt Ida project.
In mid-March, the company announced its third resource upgrade in less than 12 months, increasing Bottle Creek’s estimate by almost double to now total 5.5 million tonnes at 1.72 grams per tonne gold for 309,000 ounces.
This upgrade brings the global Mt Ida resources (including Bottle Creek, Mt Ida South and Quinn’s) to 6.8Mt at 1.85g/t gold for 406,000oz gold and 3.78Moz silver.
During the quarter, Alt also completed metallurgical testing of the Bottle Creek Emu and Southwark ore zones and in line with its strategy to rapidly bring Bottle Creek into production within two years, it progressed various technical studies.
These included the completion of a pit optimisation study for the pre-stripped Emu and Southwark deposits, as well as treatment plant preliminary plant design and costing parameters, tailings storage facility and environmental assessment studies.
These various components are expected to go into the preparation of a feasibility study.