After completing construction, commissioning the mill, and pouring first gold in November, Red Eagle Mining Corp. reported that the San Ramon gold mine achieved commercial production at the end of March. The processing facility has reached a steady state and underground mining is progressing at an increasing rate with the opening of additional ore development headings.
Since Q3 2016 when the decline moved through oxidized material, requiring additional support, into competent granodiorite, daily advance rates have substantially increased from 3 meters per day (m/d) up to 27 m/d. The main and secondary ramps have advanced 2.4 kilometers from the portal. A 57-m vertical ventilation shaft was completed and connected to the underground workings.
Initial poor ground conditions were encountered. Accordingly, the mining method has been adjusted to conventional mechanized cut-and-fill stoping. Stope lengths have been reduced to 40 m, and ground control has improved, minimizing dilution. The 100- and 125-m levels are currently being mined with seven ore development headings.
The processing facility commissioning is complete and exceeding design throughput with the capability to process up to 1,200 mt/d. A total of 23,666 mt of ore were processed during March (760 mt/d). Higher grade ore was blended with lower grade stockpiles to ensure operating efficiency throughout the month, and 1,758 oz of gold were produced during March.
The company says underground production crews continue to build on their expertise and efficiency. Production rates and grade continue to increase as the underground team adjusts to more controlled stoping methods and additional production faces open up.