Las Chispas

The Las Chispas property is located approximately 180 kilometres northeast of Hermosillo, Sonora, Mexico. The community of Arizpe (estimated population 2,000) is located approximately 11 kilometres to the north of the property. The property consists of 21 concessions totalling 1377.50 hectares.


In 1640, rich silver veins where discovered near Arizpe by soldiers under the command of Pedro de Perra. The property did not receive any notable exploration or production until the late 1800s. From 1880 to 1930, several mines on the property had intermittent production. From public information, approximately 100 million ounces of silver and 200,000 ounces of gold were cumulatively produced from the property. Since 1930, no significant work has been completed on the property.

Las Chispas

During the early 1980s, a local Mexican company reprocessed old waste and tailings dumps from Las Chispas. Processing was by vat leaching with no production records available.


Geologically, the Las Chispas property consists of a Late Cretaceous – Early Tertiary low sulfidation epithermal system. Host rocks are volcanic tuffs, rhyolites, agglomerates and rhyolite breccias. Andesite dykes are noted in underground workings sub-parallel to mineralized structures.

The Las Chispas Mine is known for its world-class silver mineral specimens including polybasite, stephanite, native silver and pyrargyrite. Specimens are on display in private collections and museums worldwide.

Historical Production

Mineralization occurs in 0.5 to 5 metre wide veins with adjacent stockwork and breccias trending northwest- southeast for 1 to 1.5 kilometres. Depth from surface of known mineralization is estimated at 300 metres. Main veins dip 55 to 85 degrees to the southwest. Fourteen epithermal veins have been previously defined on the property of which 3 have had notable production. The historical producing veins included Las Chispas, William Tell, and Babicanora. From public information, the Las Chispas mill production between 1908 through 1911 was approximately 25,000 tonnes grading 35 gpt gold and 4,500 gpt silver totalling an estimated 25,000 ounces of gold and 3.2 million ounces of silver. Several kilometres of underground workings exist on the property and are partially accessible.

Las Chispas area
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Babicanora area
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Current Work Program

Phase II Exploration Program

SilverCrest's current underground and surface drill programs are focused on four of the 19 veins identified at Las Chispas; the Las Chispas, William Tell, Babicanora and Varela veins. Recent drill results indicate a newly discovered unmined high grade vein immediately adjacent to the Las Chispas Main Vein and historic workings. The new vein, named "Giovanni", and the Las Chispas Main Vein are two of 19 epithermal veins that have been defined on the Property to date.

The most significant results for this latest drill program is an intercept in Hole LC-17-45 of 1.9 metres grading 50.6 gpt gold and 5,018.8 gpt silver, or 8,803 gpt AgEq* including 0.7 metres grading 137.5 gpt gold and 13,560 gpt silver, or 23,873 gpt AgEq*. This hole intercepted the Giovanni Vein near the accessible 400 level (see Figures below). Also noteworthy is 1.9 metres grading 0.39 gpt gold and 427.8.0 gpt silver, or 457 gpt AgEq* in Hole LC-17-30 which intercepted the William Tell Vein. For more details, please refer to the table under "Assays" and news release, dated August 3rd.

The highest grade intercept in hole LC17-45 consists of massive crystalline argentite and electrum (see Figures below) in the Giovanni Vein. This intercept is located near the accessible 400 level of the Las Chispas Historic Mine in an area not previously mined. Additionally, multiple veins were drill-intersected in the footwall of the Giovanni Vein and are being investigated. The Company is currently completing detailed underground mapping and sampling in this area with planned underground drilling for further delineation in Q3 2017.

Holes LC17-41, 42 and 46 hit voids. Holes LC16-25 and 26, LC17-43, 44, 53 intercepted mineralization below the Company’s 150 gpt AgEq* cutoff. Drill hole LC17-54 was lost downhole. The Company will consider further work on these two veins after drilling at the higher priority Babicanora Vein. The Varela Vein appears to be increasing in grade to the southeast and the La Blanquita Vein appears to be the southeast extension of the Giovanni Vein (see Figures below).

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Recent drilling results of the Babicanora vein showed an intercept in hole UB17-09 of 7.6 metres grading 4.08 grams per tonne (“gpt”) gold and 196.1 gpt silver, or 502 gpt silver equivalent (“AgEq”; based on a ratio of 75 (Ag):1 (Au) and 100% metallurgical recovery) including 2.2 metres grading 10.8 gpt gold and 181 gpt silver, or 991 gpt AgEq. Also noteworthy is 6.6 metres grading 1.03 gpt gold and 328.5 gpt silver, or 406 gpt AgEq in Hole BA17-04. Both intercepts (UB17-09 and BA17-04) are 50 to 60 metres from the surface.

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For more details, please refer to the table under "Assays" and news release, dated June 22, 2017.

Underground access to the Babicanora vein is via a 230-metre long 4 by 4 metre horizontal adit, which was driven by a French company during the 1860s.

Babicanora adit


Mineralized fill

Core review and logging at Las Chispas

Initially, the Company outlined its Phase II exploration program to include an 8,000 to 10,000 metre underground and surface core drill program. Given the positive drill results to date and continued geological knowledge and understanding of the trends in the area, SilverCrest has expanded this program. Therefore, the Company plans to drill another 7,000 to 9,000 metres(total of 23,000 to 25,000 metres) in Phase ll by the end of 2017. Phase ll surface drilling in Las Chispas area is complete and surface drilling continues in the Babicanora area. The Company anticipates completing its Phase ll work in Q4 2017 with its maiden resource estimation by Q1 2018.

Other Exploration work

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In addition to core drilling, other ongoing Phase ll exploration work at Las Chispas includes: finishing underground rehabilitation in H2 2017, underground channel sampling, possible extension and rehabilitation of the Babicanora adit for another 150 to 250 metres, expand surface mapping and sampling in the district, initial metallurgical work and auger drilling to determine accurate volumetrics and grade of historic dumps.

N. Eric Fier, CPG, P.Eng., President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company, is the Qualified Person under National Instrument 43-101, Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects, responsible for the preparation of the technical information included in this website and for supervision of field activities related to the Company projects.

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