Comstock Mining Inc

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Comstock Mining Inc


Disclaimer:

Statements contained in this blog, which are not historical facts, including statements about plans, goals and expectations regarding businesses and opportunities, new or existing business strategies, capital resources and future financial results are "forward looking" as contemplated by the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Such forward-looking statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to, changes in government regulation, generally accepted accounting principles, taxation, competition, general economic conditions and geopolitical conditions. Accordingly, actual results may differ materially from those projected or implied in the forward-looking statements.




CEO Blog

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CEO Blog - April 15, 2011
Friday, April 15 2011 19:47
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Question: Why is a mining company acquiring the Gold Hill Hotel?

Answer: The Gold Hill Hotel is truly one of the precious gems of the Comstock, one of its oldest and most historic buildings, and the most significant commercial business in Gold Hill. Our investment indicates the seriousness of our engagement and integration into the greater Comstock economic community. Mining and tourism are not in conflict. We are planning and designing our mining operations and revitalization activities to compliment the base tourism economy of the Comstock. We are becoming a vibrant part of this community and plan on being so for a very long time. Historically, mining was the backbone of this area. Today, tourism is a huge partner in that distinction. We believe the area has incredible growth potential and we are investing and participating in a meaningful way, all across the Comstock. This includes investing in historic preservation and restoration, creating and preserving mining and non-mining jobs that improve the quality of this historic mining community throughout both Storey and Lyon counties.

GHH_2011.1.15_-_600

Unique to Comstock Mining is its connection with principal investor, John Winfield, whose company is the primary owner of the San Francisco Hilton. In addition, Comstock’s Chairman of the Board, Bill Nance, has many years of experience in hotel and restaurant management/ownership, including operationally with the San Francisco Hilton. Interestingly, the economic and social ties between San Francisco and the Comstock were crucially important to the formative history of both areas, and this connection is well-suited to a current-day tourism link. Cross-marketing the Gold Hill Hotel and the Comstock in the Bay Area will not only benefit tourism, it will broaden our exposure as a Company to an investor community not generally reached by the precious metals communication network.

For more information on the Gold Hill Hotel, visit www.goldhillhotel.net

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 

 
CEO Blog - April 12, 2011
Tuesday, April 12 2011 21:14
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Mark your calendar for the Comstock Mining Annual Shareholders Meeting.  We will be scheduling mine tours at our facilities on the Comstock as well as delivering informational presentations at the Gold Hill Hotel on June 22nd and hosting the shareholders meeting on the 23rd at the Gold Hill Hotel.  You must be a shareholder to register for this event.

We will be collecting registration information on our website at http://www.comstockmining.com/investors/investor-relations

Please feel free to contact us through this site or by calling 775 847 7524 for Julie Draksler.

You may check the link here to find accommodations near Virginia City, Nevada.  http://www.visitvirginiacitynv.com/lodging.aspx

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - April 6, 2011
Wednesday, April 06 2011 19:50
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Question: How would you characterize the company’s relationship with Silver City?

Answer: Our relationship with Silver City is open, engaged, professional, usually constructive and almost always civil. We have direct and open dialogue with nearly the entire community. The community is within a reasonable proximity of our Dayton Resource Area. We have existing employees who also live in the community and we anticipate that more will want to move into that community, as well as into Virginia City. None of these points deny that some of the residents are tense about the uncertainty that inherently rests with exploration drilling, mine planning and development. Residents are proud of their community and some of them demonstrate a spirit disproportionate to their relatively small population. There is also a staunch, albeit smaller, group of pro mining, pro development advocates.  Local government consists of an advisory board that reports to the Lyon County Board of Commissioners.

Phase I drilling on the Dayton Resource has been completed and confirmed our early expectation to continue exploration and in-fill drilling to ultimately develop this resource as a second mine. We strongly believe our presence in the area brings immediate benefits to the community. Our investments in land, infrastructure, people and the community have just begun. We place the highest priority on preserving (and restoring) the historical character of the Comstock while revitalizing and delivering commercial and economic benefits for the community.  It cannot be denied that this mine operation will bring change for some residents.  While we believe these changes create positive impacts, we will continue to practically minimize some of the negative impacts. Philosophically, we believe we will enhance the quality of life on the Comstock, and our whole organization is committed to a sustainable, mutually beneficial operation.

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - April 4, 2011
Monday, April 04 2011 13:40
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Question: What is the status of the Lucerne mine plan, both the Phase I starter pit and the Phase II mine as described in Behre Dolbear Technical Report?

Answer: Thank you for clearly referencing in your question that our intention is to mine the Lucerne Resource Area in two phases. The first phase is identified as the “starter mine”. The starter mine is located in the Lucerne Resource Area on patented claims (located on the west side of the state route) known as the Hartford, Lucerne, Billy the Kid and Justice that completely reside on private land. Our starter mine infill drill program, summarized in our January 18th press release, was designed specifically to provide the detailed geological information needed to finalize the mine plan for this starter mine operation.

This drill program was completed with 118 RC holes totaling about 23,000 feet, primarily in the historic Hartford patent within our Lucerne Resource area. The drilling program also included drilling eight core holes, totaling over 1,500 feet using a diamond-drilling rig.  The cores are being used for metallurgical testing required for final processing flow engineering and for geotechnical testing to determine final slope stability calculations for the open pit walls. We now have preliminary mine plan data and are working towards, intermediate and final mine plans for production. In addition, we have expanded the current drilling program onto certain private parcels of our land on the East-side target (that is, the east side of the state route within the Lucerne Resource Area) because of the significant potential for adding to the starter mine.

We already hold substantially all of the state and local permits for mining on private land (air quality and mercury permits are still in progress because new 2011 regulations and our plans for updating our crushing facility prompted additional filings). Because we have two phases of mining, I think there is some confusion about what federal permits are required at what time. We do not need to complete NEPA or EIS for our starter mine activities. These are only required for Phase II.

As identified in my February 1, 2011 blog, we are on track for commencing production on our starter mine in 2011. I reiterated this on the conference call on March 31, 2011, and I will provide another update on the scheduling and progress again in early May.

Phase II of mining in the Lucerne Resource Area will expand our mine (the ultimate mine plan) onto public land managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Because of the BLM’s management, a plan of operation with the ultimate mine plan must be submitted to initiate permitting under NEPA. We had intended to submit this plan of operation in 2010, as stated in our Behre Dolbear technical report. However, our successful spring 2010 drilling program deferred the required, ultimate mine plan because it identified an expansion of the Lucerne’s mineral potential. Our current East-side drilling program was designed to fill in the significant gaps in that information. Upon completion, we will write the plan of operations with an adequate scope for the life of the project.

This two-phase structure allows us to enter into production sooner and more sustainably, thereby accelerating cash generation while still allowing us to optimize the long-term extraction of gold and silver from our resource. All of these activities are consistent with our stated goal of delivering stockholder value by validating qualified resources (measured and indicated) and reserves (probable and proven) of 3,250,000 gold equivalent ounces by 2013, and commencing commercial mining and processing operations during 2011, with annual production rates of 20,000 gold equivalent ounces.

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Mar 23, 2011
Wednesday, March 23 2011 17:37
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Question:  What is the status of listing on NYSE-Amex and TSX?

Answer:   We are directly engaged with the AMEX team for listing on the NYSE-Amex and we believe we meet all the listing requirements.  We have submitted substantially all of the required information.  The remaining requirement is the year-end financial statements that will become available when we file our Annual Report on Form 10-K.  We believe we will obtain our listing, pending review of our application and our Annual Report on Form 10-K, as early as May 2011.  Our company has achieved such a positive change in our capital structure, including a successful reverse stock spilt, a full debt for permanent equity exchange and a capital raise with an outstanding list of institutional investors resulting in a strong, well capitalized balance sheet.

Earlier this month, I returned from the PDAC 2011 conference held in Toronto.  While there, I met with the team at Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) to further our progression to listing on that exchange.  We have already submitted our technical reports, details on our exploration plans and Director and Officers’ Personnel Information Forms (PIF’s).  These submissions tend to require the longest lead-time items for TSX review.  As a Nevada corporation (and proud of it) as opposed to say, a Delaware corporation, we have some additional review requirements.  Just for clarification, we are not interested in listing on the TSX Venture (TSX-V) exchange.  Our governance and capital structure likely qualify us for the big board, that is, the TSX.  The TSX listing is a future objective, consistent with cultivating a broader investor base.  The TSX process, although engaged, will follow the NYSE listing.

I would like to add that we were met with many interested investors and industry leaders at the PDAC 2011 conference.  More and more professionals in our industry are becoming familiar with The Comstock.  The story continues to be positively received and we are excited that these activities will have a positive impact on broadening our already keen shareholder base.

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Mar 9, 2011
Wednesday, March 09 2011 14:32
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Question: The drill results D-11-03, 09, and now 21 appear to line up in a high grade structure. Could this be an undiscovered bonanza vein on the Comstock? When will this area be densely drilled enough to get an accurate picture of this system?

Answer: The goals of the first phase of our Dayton drilling program were to test the continuity of mineralization to greater depths, and to validate and calibrate our exploration model for the Dayton.   With the drilling complete, our geological professionals are now evaluating the drilling results and updating their interpretation of Dayton geology.

The drill results for the holes you mentioned are indeed exciting, but it is too early to say that we have an undiscovered bonanza.  The next round of drilling, scheduled to begin after our current East-side drilling is complete, will be more closely-spaced to help us connect the high-grade structures across the property.   Whatever their orientation, understanding these zones will be key to our mine planning efforts.

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Mar 7, 2011
Monday, March 07 2011 01:03
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Question: When can we expect the first assays from the recent drill program to be made public?

Answer: We announced today the results for thirteen additional reverse circulation (RC) holes from the first phase of drilling on the Dayton Resource Area. The results include the highest-grade interval encountered to-date at the Dayton: 10 feet (3.05 m) grading 1.121 ounces per ton (38.39 g/tonne) gold and 2.279 ounces per ton (78.05 g/tonne) silver, contained in an interval of 135 feet (41.15 m) grading 0.218 ounces per ton (7.47 g/tonne) gold and 0.685 ounces per ton (23.46 g/tonne) silver.  Many of the holes also encountered the deeper, silver-only mineralization that was first encountered in D10-01, the first hole in phase one.

All of the holes on the southern fence and the first holes on the central fence were announced in the Company’s February 28, 2011 press release.  The holes announced today include more holes on the central fence, all of the holes on the northern fence, and an additional three holes on an intermediate fence between the central and northern fences.

 

PressRelease_DaytonDrilling2_blog_2011.3.7

Dayton Phase 1 Drill Fences

Including the holes reported today, 32 of the 39 holes in the program have been reported.  All 32 holes encountered intervals of significant mineralization with many of the holes encountering the deeper, silver-only mineralization that was first encountered in the first hole in phase one.  The mineralized zone in vertical-hole D11-21 was confirmed by the results for angle-hole D11-25.  However, both holes terminated drilling prematurely due to adverse drilling conditions, both while still in the mineralization.   Since these holes on our northern-most fence encountered adverse drilling conditions and bottomed in the zone, we consider the mineralization to be open laterally and at depth.  Our next drilling phase will include holes designed to test the true thickness and lateral extent of this zone.

The results represent the strongest evidence-to-date for bonanza-grade gold and silver zones at the Dayton.  It is exciting to watch the accelerated development of Dayton as it advances toward our goal of contributing a much larger resource, including the additional, silver-only discoveries that we encountered in our very first hole and continue to encounter.

We are pleased with the exceptional productivity of our Dayton drilling and the pervasive nature of the gold and silver resource we are validating throughout this resource area. We look forward to the remaining Phase One assays and our team has already begun the process for a second mine plan and ultimately a second mine on the Comstock.

I will be attending the PDAC Conference in Toronto this week. And I look forward to announcing further updates on our drill program in early April.

 

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Feb 1, 2011
Tuesday, February 01 2011 21:15
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Question: Are you still on target for production in 2011? Can you give a starting month for commencing production?

Answer: Our strategic plan clearly calls for a return to mine production in 2011, and validation of mineral resources and reserves of at least 3.25 million gold equivalent ounces by 2013. Planning and scheduling each intermediate objective ensures our qualified team is able to execute timely and effectively.  We are fully scheduled with a critical chain of tasks supporting the intermediate tasks necessary for commencing production.  Yes, we are on track for commencing production in 2011.

Some of the more critical intermediate objectives scheduled for production include: completing development drilling in our Lucerne Resource Area (completed and recently announced); completing initial (bottle roll) metallurgical testing on all relevant material types in all of the starter mine resource areas (completed); completing full heap leach, column simulation metallurgical testing (in progress); finalizing our starter mine and production plans for the Lucerne Resource Area (in progress), including assessing sufficiency of reserve from the Hartford segment of the Lucerne Resource Area, completing Infill drilling in the Dayton (in progress) and East Side Resource Areas (scheduled), finalizing our starter mine and production plans for the Dayton and East Side Resource Areas (scheduled); finalizing metallurgical process and equipment design (primarily crushing plant and metallurgical process stages) (scheduled); finalizing submitted amendments to existing permits (in progress), as required, purchasing and installing new equipment (scheduled), staffing and commencing production (scheduled).

All of the aforementioned activities are either in progress or scheduled for commencement for production in 2011. Again, we do not know exactly what month production will start because the results of certain tasks are unknown (for example, metallurgical testing results will define final material crush sizes and final crushing equipment design) and we must adapt our activities properly before we commit the next necessary capital expenditures for production. Ultimately, this approach saves tremendous time and money and avoids deploying capital poorly or sub-optimally.

Please recall that our starter mine plan in the Lucerne Resource Area is positioned on private land under our existing permits.  So far, we are pleased with the progress of our schedules, both in terms of drilling and all other activities progressing us toward production.

 

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Jan 27, 2011
Thursday, January 27 2011 15:10
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Question: Why is quartz porphyry important in The Comstock?

Answer: In our Lucerne Resource Area, quartz porphyry is one of the more favorable hosts for mineral enrichment by mineralizing fluids, and in places, can be very thick.

This typical east-west cross section, looking north, shows an example of the intruded quartz porphyry, represented by the orange hatching, filling most of the space between the Silver City and Gold Canyon faults.  Higher gold grades, shown in red, are seen to be concentrated in the quartz porphyry.

Lucerne_crossection

Typical Lucerne Cross Section

In specific locations, the intrusive is seen to have replaced the entire zone between two of the sub-parallel faults, creating mineralized zones over one hundred feet in thickness.

The traditional view of the geology in the Lucerne Resource Area is as a layer-cake of volcanic rocks.  At the bottom, is the rock we call the meta-volcanic unit.  This is a thick sequence of volcanic rocks, approximately 180-200 million years old, which were metamorphosed by heat and pressure, and then partially eroded.  On top of this erosional surface (geologically, an "unconformity"), younger layers (18-24 million years old) of volcanic ash (tuffs) and volcanic flows (andesites and rhyolites) were deposited.

This layer-cake was faulted by the northwest trending Silver City fault zone, a series of sub-parallel faults, and faulted again by northeast and north-south trending faults.  In the traditional view, the faults created pathways for the mineralizing fluids which enriched the surrounding rocks.  As we have seen in our exploration-drilling program, enrichment can occur along any of these faults, and in any of the rock types, although some rock types are more receptive, and tend to host thicker intervals of enrichment.

2011_1_27_Quartz_table2011_1_27_Chip_Tray_Quartz

Actual chip tray and corresponding gold & silver assay results

Our new twist on the geology of the Silver City fault zone is that the sub-parallel faults created fractures that resulted in zones of weakness, especially along intersections with the northeast-trending faults.  The weaker zones created pathways for the quartz porphyry to intrude, replacing the existing rock.  Needless to say, when our drilling exposes extended instances of quartz porphyry, it’s a very good sign.

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Jan 24, 2011
Monday, January 24 2011 22:57
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Sound Abatement and Recent Activities on The Comstock

Our drilling in the Dayton Resource Area has brought us closer to Silver City, NV. In some cases, the natural topography of the Comstock Lode District may act as a sound amplifier.  Acknowledging this effect, we have implemented special sound abatement curtains designed to absorb most of the noise generated from drilling.  We have also engaged an acoustic engineer that has taken area baseline sound readings before drilling and during drilling before the sound curtains were installed.  We will continue to monitor the sound readings after installation of the sound barriers to better increase their effectiveness.

sound-curtains2b  sound-curtains1b

In addition, Nevada Division of Environmental Protection has been onsite recently and we remain compliant with all state and local regulations. Because we value our communities, our goals include minimizing disruption to the extent practically possible. Early reports from our communities have been encouraging as the noise abatement structures are working. 

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
CEO Blog - Jan 20, 2011
Thursday, January 20 2011 19:55
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Question: Is the Company going to joint-venture any part of your property? Do you have to raise any funds for your production increase or exploration program? When do you expect a stream of drill results?

 

Answer: We have no current plans for venturing any of our properties.  In fact we continue acquiring additional properties in the district, expanding our footprint and creating greater opportunities for exploration and mining. We are fully funded for exploration and for commencing and expanding our existing production capabilities at our processing facilities in American Flats.  We have focused our development and exploration drilling on several of our highest priority targets for meeting the goal of our strategic plan.  Our plan calls for a return to mine production in 2011, and validation of mineral resources and reserves of at least 3.25 million gold equivalent ounces by 2013.

Please see my previous Blog on January 9, 2011, and the Press Release of January 18, regarding communications of drill results.

 

Kindest regards,

Corrado De Gasperis
President and CEO

 
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