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The Dual Threat Gold & Silver Opportunity that’s Rocking in the Cariboo

Dave Jackson Dave Jackson, Stockhouse
1 Comment| December 13, 2021

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When we last just touched base via podcast about a year-and-a-half ago, Green River Gold Corp. (CCR) (CSE.CCR, OTC: CCRRF, Forum) had completed a very busy summer in the mining industry in British Columbia's Cariboo region. Fast-forward to today, and things continue to heat up for CCR as a dual threat gold and silver opportunity. The company continues to make waves in one of Canada’s most historic and prolific gold and silver mining districts.

Stockhouse Media’s Dave Jackson recently reconnected with Perry Little, CEO of Green River Gold, to get investors and company shareholders up-to-date with the latest and greatest hits out of the Cariboo with CCR.


(CLICK IMAGE TO PLAY VIDEO)

TRANSCRIPT BELOW:

SH: To start off with, Perry, for Stockhouse investors that might be new to company, can you tell us a little bit about yourself and the history of Green River Gold?

PL: This was my brainchild back a few years. I started thinking about it 10 years ago. I was a stockbroker for about 28 years and during that time I sort of specialized in junior resource stuff, was a real gold bug, an economist from way back when and I think anybody who's got a background in economics has to love gold. I got to know a lot of geologists. I got to know the area up around the Cariboo, the heart of the old Cariboo gold rush and determined that I was going to find something to do with that when I finally got tired of being a stockbroker. That happened in about 2016, I'd been doing the same thing for too long, it was time to move on and I decided to pursue my crazy dreams.

In the spring and summer of 2016, I retired from Canaccord, where I'd been for the previous 14 years, and decided to chase my dreams in the Cariboo. I knew a couple of companies up there, a company by the name of Barkerville Gold Mines, that had proven up, I think, close to 4 million ounces of gold at that point. They were the big dog in the neighborhood but they were always on a limited budget. The other company that I knew quite well was a company called Omineca Mining and Metals, which had a really interesting underground alluvial gold deposit up there, which I'd gone up and done some homework on. I looked at the area as an area that had a lot of gold. They didn't run out of gold back in the 1870s. The boom kind of came to an end and that was it.

The area had been under capitalized for about 150 years since then, but there's lots of gold. I thought it was a good place to kind of plant my stake and see where we were going to go on the gold mining end. We went out there with a private company to begin with and we did a little bit of placer mining, which is a lot tougher than it looks on television and we realized through that, that there were huge opportunities just servicing that end of the business. We ended up getting into the service industry, servicing the placer miners, everything from gold pans to metal detectors, to great big trommels, wash plants for their mining operations and through that we met a lot of people. We got to know the local geologists, got to know the local people and we started looking for properties.

We were doing that from day one on the placer, but we started looking at the hard rock properties, as well. After a while we stumbled on one that was a little too good to turn down. We negotiated on it for a while, and finally in March of 2019, we parachuted it into a public company, which I had started in 2017. Basically, we opened Green River up as a shell just to parachute some gold opportunities into. In March of 2019 we did our first deal and we picked up the Fontaine Lode gold project, which is about 90 square kilometers of prospective gold property, right on a long regional trend that expands from where Barkerville Gold Mines is right down to Spanish Mountain Gold. It is quite a strong prevailing trend through there.

We had fortunate timing. We picked that property up put it into Green River Gold and within a month of that Osisko, with their much larger pocketbook came in and took over Barkerville gold mines for $335 million and brought the missing ingredient back to the Cariboo, which was capital. They have been drilling extensively since then. They're putting a mine into production by the end of 2023, that's right next door to us. When we picked up our 90 square kilometers, it is contiguous to Osisko's property, but some people think we're sort of a Johnny-come-lately and we're just playing the closeology thing and that couldn't be further from the truth. We were in there before Osisko came in. The neighborhood has definitely heated up. To the south of us there's Karus Gold, which has got a fairly significant shareholding by Eric Sprott. That's not immediately south of us but very close.

Osisko Development Corp has a market cap of about 700 million sitting on one side of us, and our good friends at Omineca Mining are on the other side of us. The area has really heated up. How we ended up there, was me chasing a placer mining thing that turned into a hard rock thing. What’s turned out is that the hard rock has kind of taken over in our business plan from the placer side. We're still involved on the placer side but it's less and less of what we're doing going forward and we think it can provide some cashflow for the company, which is interesting. We've got kind of an interesting way of doing it. We don't actually do any placer mining. We rent out the properties to other miners.

We still are servicing the placer mines with other things and that sort of pays for office space and gives us a reason to be there. Unlike having a head office in Toronto or Vancouver or Calgary, nothing wrong with that, technically our head office is Edmonton but our field office and where all of our people are, is within 50 kilometers of where our mining properties are. We have people that can go up there and explore all day long and come home and sleep in their own bed, which is kind of a cheap way of doing exploration. That's sort of how we got here. It started off with a private co, I saw the opportunities figure we needed a public vehicle, started Green River Gold and then we started parachuting properties into it. So there we go.

SH: Can you update our investor audience and your Green River Gold shareholders on any new company developments…especially the just-announced exploration drilling at your nickel-cobalt and talc project in Quesnel and please walk us through this high-grade property.

PL: This is an interesting property. I mentioned the Fontaine Lode gold project. We've sort of bifurcated that in our mind, there's an imaginary line that runs down the middle. About 22 square kilometers of the 90 square kilometers is prone to nickel and cobalt and talc if you can believe it. I'll explain talc in a moment. When we staked the property, we were looking for the gold and we were focused on all the properties that were on the gold trend. The person we had working with us at the time was a local geologist who knew the area very well and knew the history and said, you know for a little bit extra, you could stake these properties off to the north and west here a little bit. They're contiguous, it's all part of the same mass, but these are more prone to nickel and there's this really interesting talc deposit on it.

We decided to follow that lead and we went ahead, and that worked out well. It was fortunate because battery metals have become all the rage of course, with nickel being one of the primary battery metals and we have some very interesting anomalies and some old drill holes from way back when, very limited, that indicate there is nickel there and it might be the right type of nickel. It could be similar to what FPX Nickel has at the Decar project, which is a huge project, but we're hoping it's the same type of nickel. We hope to find a sort of nickel iron alloy. The magnetic signature that showed up was similar and so we're excited about it and we will do some groundwork on that next year. We can't do too much in the winter on that.

We're not ready to drill on it or anything. We'll be getting back to that one in the summer. Right now, we're actually busy on something else on that property. I mentioned talc and we knew when we staked the property, we had some talc on there. Back in the 1980s, a group came up there and they actually drilled quite a few holes, shallow holes, 60-65 feet, and they discovered quite a significant amount of talc right near surface, obviously and very close to infrastructure. It is about 500 yards off of a major logging road. 16 kilometers up that road, you junction with the Barkerville highway and you're on pavement. It's a great location and they found quite a bit of talc. We didn't talk about this immediately in 2019 because there was a bit of a hole in the donut.

We had 90 square kilometers but we were missing a couple of claims. A few months ago, we managed to negotiate those claims, and now we have the entire area that's prone to having a talc on it. We started to drill on that and it's interesting. We're drilling with a backpack drill, which you can do without a permit. Normally, backpack drills are tiny little drills, it's a diamond drill but it's only about a 1.4-inch drill core and you can't get very far with a tiny little drill like that in regular rock. We are down 60 feet in talc. Okay. With a one-man backpack drill, it's crazy. I didn't think we would ever do that but we are in talc. It gives you an idea just how soft talc is, in fact it is the softest of all minerals.

A lot of people are familiar with talcum powder. That is a small percentage of the total use. I think less than 5% of the total market for talc is talcum powder and cosmetics. Most talc is used in industrial processes. The three big ones are pulp and paper ceramics and plastics and that would be probably 75% of the market right there. It's also used in processing rubber, it's in roofing materials, industrial solvents, paint. It's got just a pile of uses. It's about a $3 billion annual market and there are no talc mines in Western Canada. The closest one is in Timmins. It's an interesting market. We saw the results these guys had from the 80s and we just had to go drill it, see if we could duplicate it.

Now, here's where we got really fluky about a week ago. We've got a crew out there drilling, using this backpack drill. We got down about 42 feet with talc and again, I'm still astonished that we've got that far off the backpack drill, but talc is so soft. There's no resistance. You're just going through this stuff. We're pulling the core up and at 42 feet, believe it or not, we intersected one of the holes from the 1980s. Now, the odds of that, we were drilling on an angle and their hole was drilled straight, 90 degrees straight down. The odds of this would be like getting hit by lightning and a meteorite during a zombie apocalypse. You can't even calculate the odds on this thing.

We had no idea that hole was there because the coordinates that we were given… they very accurate details on what they drilled and everything else…. except exactly where it was. We didn't know where they collared their holes. So we didn't know if we were within a hundred yards when we started to drill. We actually could see it in the drill core, we have a great little piece of drill core, where all of a sudden there's an air pocket. We hit their hole. There's a gap in our drill core and you couldn't do that again in a million years. But what it did is it told us exactly where they drilled from. Now we're able to use their results, which are very detailed. They did all the assays, did all the quality of talc studies and we know exactly where the results are from because we somehow accidentally ended up in exactly the same spot.

Again, the odds of that were remarkable but it saved us a lot of time because now we can use all those the old data and I can tell you that we are hitting exactly what they hit. There is talc right from surface, we're drilling off of outcroppings. Outcroppings are rare in the Cariboo because the glaciers deposited a lot of stuff on top of the hard rock, but we've got talc right to surface. We're drilling down into it and once you get through the first few meters you're hitting very, very high percentage talc. They reported percentages, I think as high as 85%, and we're hitting stuff that looks similar. We haven't sent it into the lab yet. I can't say too much about it, but I can tell you that it sure looks like what they reported in the 1980’s.

If it is the high-grade talc and clean, apparently there was no asbestos reported in the talc they found back in the 80s, we'll test that of course and make sure but being that close to infrastructure in a market that's under serviced for talc, I think we could have something there. We had to take a shot at it. We just had to. We'll be drilling that through the winter. We've got another drill coming in that will actually go down 400 feet. We'll be doing that in January. We'll be able to see just how deep this thing goes and how much is there but it's kind of exciting. It's a sideline project but it's very exciting and who knows, maybe we’ll have to rename ourselves Green River Talc. We'll see.

SH: Earlier this summer, you announced an airborne survey that has revealed magnetic anomalies at your Fontaine Lode Gold Project. This may be news to many investors here at Stockhouse. Can you unpack the benefits of it?

PL: It was UAV mag survey. It is flown with drones with instrumentation on them. They fly at about the treetop level. We did the entire 90 square kilometers of the property. The gold side and the nickel side and the talc side for that matter. On the gold, we came up with what we sort of expected to see. We've highlighted the areas that we want to focus our further exploration on, and we pretty much confirmed the trends we're looking for there. That's what we got out of the gold side was basically confirmation that we're in the right places and a bit of direction as to where to look more specifically for the gold.

There's something showing a real anomaly where we think the nickel is, very close to where the talc is. We're going to drill a couple of holes while we're looking for talc, we're going to drill a couple of holes and try to see what's out there as far as nickel goes and test the extent of the talc at the same time. But yeah, it definitely caught the eye of our geologist and the geophysicist who we had take a look at the data and kept coming back to that and saying, well you got what you're looking for on the gold side but look at this. We're excited about the nickel potential and that part of the property. We'll see what shows up on it, but yeah, the mag survey was the first step in identifying targets. 90 square kilometers might not seem like much, but you don't want just to go and randomly start poking holes. It’s a very expensive way to blow through your budget.

SH: For company shareholders and potential investors, what kind of future development and progress can we expect at Fontaine?

PL: Well, next year we'll get in very early in the spring. We'll get started with some groundwork, do a bunch of soil sampling, whatever. It's difficult in the Cariboo because you do have a bunch of glacial till on top of the bed rock. It's not like Northern Ontario where I grew up where the rock's sticking right up out of the ground. Typically, you're looking at 20 to 120 feet of gravel and glacial till sitting on top of the bedrock. We'll be doing a bunch of sampling trying to figure out to pinpoint those areas where we'll want to drill and then eventually, we'll get around to a drill program on the gold, but we'll do a fair bit of sampling on that first.

We will do some groundwork as well on the nickel. I think we'd be in a position to drill on the nickel end of things much sooner. Like I said, we'll take a shot with some of our talc outlying holes here this winter but to really drill in the center of where that anomaly is, we'll do a little bit more work and then we'll pinpoint it and then we'll try to do some drilling on there next summer. Next summer we'll be going at it with bigger drills not just with this this small stuff that we're using now.

SH: Simply put, what separates Green River Gold from the competition and makes your business model particularly unique?

PL: We've got our brain trust. The people that actually know the geology are all local. Unlike lot of small companies where you may have very talented geologists, they don't get up to the property that often, our people are basically easy driving distance from the property. We also have about a 6,000 square foot shop and office building right there in Quesnel, that we use as our head office and part of that is paid for by the various services that we provide to the placer mining industry. We try to keep our overhead low. We run a very low rent, actually no rent head office here in Edmonton. As a matter of fact, our CFO is gracious enough to let us use part of his office.

We run a low overhead sort of a business, with local talent within driving distance of our exploration projects. That's part of it. Trying to think what else would make us unique. That's probably the main part of it right there is the fact that we're right there on the ground and our guys can go back and forth in that project, check on the drilling crews. We just picked up what they call a Winkie drill, which is named after the manufacturer but that's the one that'll go down 400 feet. Because we have our own storage yard and shop and service facilities and everything right there. We can basically pick that drill up and we'll be able to rent that out to other miners. There are services we can provide other miners that provide a revenue source for us and I think that that is somewhat unique.

SH: Okay. As I recall, by the way, it was the corner of Gold and Maine as I wrote in the past.

PL: I think I said it was the corner of gold mining and gold mining. Yeah. So our shop is not quite at that corner, but very close. You can see the corner from there, the corner of highway 97 north in Quesnel, British Columbia, the corner of that and highway 26, which is the famous Barkerville Highway. If you get on the Barkerville Highway, you've got about, I think it's about 85 kilometers up to Wells where Osisko's project is, and we're right next door to it but that's the end of the pavement. When you get that far up, you're at quite a bit of elevation compared to Quesnel. When you leave Quesnel, you go straight up for about 85 kilometers and then from there on in there's logging roads and that's it.

If you want to stay on pavement, you turn around when you get to Wells and you drive back down to Quesnel. We've got a great spot for servicing the gold mining industry. Some people laugh at that business model. Sometimes people look at it, say, what do we want with a business selling gold pans. Well, I'm a gold bug and I've studied gold history. You go back to the California gold rush, 1849, the gold rush that was there. I challenge any gold miner, any gold bug, name a gold miner from the California gold rush. I can't up with one. It’s not a quiz question I know the answer to, I'm not being smarter than anybody else. I don't know it either, but everybody knows Levi Strauss and he built his empire selling riveted coveralls and jeans to the gold miners in the 1849 gold rush. Through every gold rush I've ever seen, the only people guaranteed to make money, are the people supplying the services to the gold miners and helping them chase their dreams. We do a little bit of both.

SH: I have to mention your stock has had a bit of a roller coaster ride over the past year. What can you tell our investor audience regarding the current valuation of your stock and why you think it’s still a good buy right now?

PL: Yeah, I can't believe we're sitting at this price. By the time we finish the current financing we're doing, which is at six cents and six and a half cents with a flow through and we still got a little bit of room left and we'll be closing it pretty soon. By the time we finish it, we'll be we'll still be well under 70 million shares outstanding and at a price of five or six cents where we've been trading, you're looking at a market cap in the three and a half million-dollar range. We have various businesses that are actually in the company. We have 90 square kilometers of gold, nickel and now talc potential sitting in a great location, in a great fairway in an area that capital is finally flowing back into.

We've got a silver project as well down near Invermere, BC, but I wouldn't even mention that one just because it did throw us too far off track here but all of that for three and a half million bucks with the potential we’ve got, I think it's ridiculously underpriced here at this point, frankly, but that's just me. The talc project, we'll see what we can drill up there because we're in a position we could drill a few holes and actually come up with a calculation as to how much is there and it's very close to surface and very close to infrastructure. That's one major advantage we have over many other junior gold miners is our location. It's not just the proximity to an existing gold mine. It's proximity to the infrastructure. We are very close to power, water, major highways, rail transportation down in Quesnel.

If we do find an economic quantity of whether it's talc, nickel, or gold, we're in a fabulous position to go out there and actually turning it into an income stream. If you have any doubt about that, just take a look at Osisko, who are in the process of building a gold mine right next door to us. We're pretty excited about the potential and a lot of it has to do with that proximity to the infrastructure. When I was a broker, I saw fabulous drill results. Sometimes you'd look at them and say, wow, that's a can't miss and then it would turn out to be 400 miles from the nearest land mammal. You have to factor that in when you look at the attractiveness of any mineral project is, could it ever actually get built and could it be profitable? And so much of that is proximity to infrastructure.

SH: What’s the long-term strategy for the company moving forward, and what should retail and institutional investors be looking out for?

PL: Long term strategy, I'm an opportunist and a pragmatist. At some point we'll probably look for partnerships on these projects, we were approached at one point last summer on the nickel end of things by a company that was interested in battery metals That didn't really come together the way it was supposed to, but we have had people ask about it. We're not expecting a takeover, don’t get me wrong here, but I think we've got attractive projects that could draw partners in at some point because as a junior company, your resources are always going to be limited and at some point, you want to bring some deeper pockets in. I think we've got a great piece of property right next to Osisko. By the way, they drilled 152,000 meters right next door to us this year.

That's just incredible. We we're thinking about that. That's like 34,000 core boxes full of drill results and that is right next door to us and every hole they drill, we can learn from. On the other side of us, we've got Omineca, good friends of ours, and they're also drilling, and we share a geologist with them. We have a consulting geologist who works back and forth with both companies and Steve Kocsis has been up in that country since the 1980s He's about my vintage and he probably knows more about the geology up in the Cariboo than any other living soul. He is one of our consultants. We have definitely got a good pedigree with our bench strength and they're all local.

SH: And you’re launching a new website. Let’s talk a little bit about that!

PL: It's been up and running for a bit. We're still adding content to it and getting the wrinkles out of it but greenrivergold.com is the new one and you'll find it's a big improvement over what we had a few months ago. It will get better as we go along. We'll continue to add more content. Right now, we're too busy doing stuff. We've got some great photos and videos and soon we'll have pictures of the drill core and whatever. We’ll get a press release out very soon on the drilling on the project and then we'll be able to add some more content but right now we're too busy doing stuff to actually put it on the website. It'll get there.

SH: Well finally, Perry, if there’s anything I’ve overlooked please feel free to elaborate.

PL: I think you've pretty much covered it off and hopefully I haven't lost everybody's attention by now. It's great to see your smiling face again.

For regular updates, visit greenrivergold.com.


FULL DISCLOSURE: This is a paid article produced by Stockhouse Publishing.


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