The Los Andes District is located some 90 km from Managua near the town of San Lorenzo, Department of Boaco. Access is via major paved highway from Managua, a drive slightly less than 1.5 hours by car. Internal access to exploration sites is via a well-developed network of gravel or dirt roads. The exploration area is in sparsely populated ranch land, mainly rolling hills with a few peaks.
Surface ownership is almost entirely private ranch and farm land. Caza controls 100% of five mineral exploration concessions which cover the entire Los Andes District. The total concession package is approximately 18,500 hectares (185 sq. km) as of December 2015.
Nicaragua lies along the western edge of the Caribbean Plate, bordered by the Cocos Plate to the west. The tectonic interactions between these plates has created a structural setting and volcanic / hydrothermal activity favorable to ore deposit formation.
The Los Andes District lies fortuitously in an area where a major north-northeasterly fault zone, related to extensional release in the plates, intersects the large northwesterly fault zone of the Nicaraguan Graben. This major structural intersection has focused a series of intrusive / volcanic centers accompanied by hydrothermal activity that defines the Los Andes District.
The Los Andes District lies within the north-northeasterly fault zone mentioned above. Caza’s geologists have traced the zone for at least 11 km in a northeasterly direction and some 2 to 3 km across. The northeasterly fault zone is cut by northwest faults, in places creating a major intersection zone.
Within the district the dominant rocks are intermediate volcanics of andesitic composition, likely belonging to the Coyol Group of Late Oligocene to Early Pliocene age (24.7 to 4.3 Ma). Numerous intrusive rocks cut the volcanic sequence, with at least two large dioritic porphyries identified to date. Associated with the intrusive / volcanic activity, numerous breccia pipes and diatremes have been mapped in the district. Aerial and satellite imagery shows a number of circular or semi-circular features suggestive of volcanic calderas.
Hydrothermal alteration is present in numerous areas within the district. Alteration is typically a combination of argillic (clay), advanced argillic (silica-clay), and silicification. The alteration is often very intense, obliterating primary textures, creating a range from total argillization to intense vuggy silica. Mapping and Terraspec analyses suggest this alteration is typical of high sulfidation epithermal systems. In addition to the high sulfidation type alteration, there are areas of low sulfidation type alteration, typically in the peripheral parts of the district. Alteration is less developed here, typically localized propylitic alteration with veins of quartz and / or quartz-calcite.
To date, Caza’s geologists have identified a number of targets within the Los Andes District. For the most part these are high sulfidation type gold-silver targets or gold-silver vein targets associated with caldera edges or other structural targets. The company continues to systematically explore and advance these targets.
Caza initially entered the Los Andes District in 2011. The area had been previously unexplored with the exception of some reconnaissance work done in the early 2000’s. During 2011 and 2012, Caza conducted reconnaissance mapping and sampling through parts of the district, identifying a number of prospective exploration targets. The company followed this work with detailed mapping and sampling at Pedregal, San Francisco, and Esperanza in 2014 and 2015. To date less than half of the district has been explored at a reconnaissance level, and only two small areas, Pedregal and San Francisco, have received detailed prospect work.
Along with the mapping fieldwork, Caza has taken over 5000 surface rock samples and roughly 2000 soil samples. Outcrop can be very limited in the district, leaving large areas unsampled or sparsely sampled. The sampling has produced a number of anomalous to highly anomalous targets, highlighted by gold, silver, or copper anomalies. Trace elements such as arsenic, mercury, antimony, and tellurium, commonly define anomalies in the district.
Caza has a Terraspec instrument and has analyzed numerous samples collected from rocks. The data has been extremely useful in interpreting alteration and defining prospective areas for follow-up prospecting.
In 2015, Caza flew an airborne magnetic-radiometric survey over the principle areas of interest in the Los Andes District. The survey covered some 550 line kilometers, flown by helicopter at a nominal height of 35 meters. The survey identified a number of magnetic anomalies as well as a few radiometric anomalies. Caza is in the process of following up on these anomalies with field investigations.
Caza completed three scout drilling campaigns in 2012, 2014, and 2015. Drilling thus far has been very widely spaced, mostly shallow scout drilling, and spread out between six targets. The initial drilling has hit strong alteration in a number of holes, plus anomalous copper, silver, and gold. The best intercepts have been at Pedregal where one scout hole hit 9.3m averaging 92.2 g/t Ag (silver) in a structural zone. Four other holes at Pedregal have hit anomalous silver (Ag > 10 g/t). The best gold intercepts have been at San Francisco, including 1.9m averaging 1.2 g/t Au (gold) in a quartz vein. The Company views the initial anomalous results in a number of the scout holes as favorable, and plans follow-up work in the future. In addition, the as the initial scout drilling has covered only a small portion of the Los Andes District, the Company plans further exploration work to generate and test further drill targets.