“We are very, very pleased with the results,” he says.
Among the highlights from APTA so far are 17.76 grams per tonne over 5.32 metres, 4.89 grams over 13.9 metres, 5 grams over 23 metres and 4.86 grams over a chunky 25 metres.
The depth of the mineralised intercepts varies, but none of them are that far down, and given that this is step-out drilling from areas on which mineralisation has already been established, Salazar is right to be pleased.
And there could be more to come
“It’s a very good discovery on one of the targets we have, but it’s only the first target,” he explains.
“We’re now moving onto the other target.”
Here, at the Charrascalla prospect, there are plenty of grounds for optimism too.
“It’s very similar in style,” says Salazar. “The geological model is very similar.”
Both Anza and Charrascalla sit on the wider Orosur property known as Anza, and as work progresses, the extent of Anza is growing.
At the moment, Anza has a strike length of 1.5 kilometres and is know to extend down to a depth of 275 metres. But it’s open in all directions, and the full extent of the mineralisation is only just starting to become clear.
Even so, Anza is already attracting serious attention. A 12-14 strong government delegation was down there in mid-February, looking to encourage Orosur to keep up the good work.
Colombia was off-grid for many years due to a combination of guerrilla and cartel activity, an the government is now keen to give legitimate commercial enterprises as much of a leg up as it can.
If, as Salazar suspects, APTA and Charascalla actually join up across the intervening ground to form one major deposit, then Orosur and the government of Colombia will be big winners both.
And as if that wasn’t enough of a proposition, there’s also a possibility that Anza might contain a major porphyry to the north.
“Our main objective at the moment,” says Salazar, “is to demonstrate the bigger potential for the whole area.”
All told, Orosur has 100 square kilometres permitted, with a further 100 square kilometres under application.
And while all of this activity in Colombia is taking place, Orosur continues to produce gold from its San Gregorio mine in Uruguay.
This hasn’t always been an easy operation to work, so back in 2015 Orosur made the decision to start mining underground at San Gregorio without having recourse to new debt or equity funding.
That’s proceeded well enough, although the model has required some tweaking at times, as zones have been declared uneconomic. But moves to the east area of the underground operation are already underway, and reserves here have already been established.
So, there’s still life in the old dog yet, even if Salazar now seems more enthusiastic about the overall exploration potential for Uruguay.
“This greenstone belt is very undeveloped,” he says. And he adds that in Uruguay Orosur needn’t necessarily embark on an elephant hut.
“In Colombia we’re targeting a big resource,” he says. “But in Uruguay if you can get 200,000 ounces you are really making money because the plant and the people are already there.”
It’ll be interesting to see, in the end, where Orosur ends up getting the most bang for its buck. But if Colombia ends up being where the real rock’n’roll happens it seems likely that Uruguay will carry on being the dependable roadie for some time to come.