The Relief Canyon project is located at the southern end of the Pershing Gold and Silver Trend along the Humboldt Range, one of Nevada’s highly prospective historic mining jurisdictions. Once a producing open pit mine, infrastructure on site at Relief Canyon includes easy access to power and water as well as a fully permitted heap-leach processing facility with a capacity of 21,500 tons per day.
A Feasibility Study released in May 2018 outlined average annual production of 91,000 ounces of gold over a 5.6-year mine life at an average all-in-sustaining-cost of US$801 per ounce of gold. Proven and Probable Reserves as of May 2018 totaled 27.5 Mt of 0.72 g/t gold material for 635,000 contained gold ounces (based on 0.17 g/t cut-off grade).
Significant exploration potential exists at Relief Canyon as approximately 20% of the 11,700-hectare land package has been explored to date. A 2018 drilling program comprised of 9,000 metres focused on four target areas referred to as the West Step-Out area, the North East Pit, the Main Zone, and the South East Lightbulb Pit. The bulk of the drilling was performed at the West Step-Out area and focused on extending mineralization to the west and southwest of the current economic pit.
In May 2020 Sandstorm received its first gold delivery from Americas Gold and Silver under the Relief Canyon stream agreement and Relief Canyon reached commercial production in January 2021.
Following an extensive review and a challenging ramp-up at Relief Canyon, the operation proceeded with run-of-mine heap leaching and continued its efforts to resolve metallurgical challenges in Q2-2021. On August 13, the company made the decision to temporarily suspend mining operations at Relief Canyon while continuing leaching operations and ongoing metallurgical test work.
Under the terms of Sandstorm’s stream, Sandstorm is entitled to receive 32,022 ounces of gold over a period of 5.5 years (which began in the second quarter of 2020).