Idaho Looking Like a Repeat Champion For Gold Mining

Idaho may be known as the "gem state" because it is host to over 70 different precious and semi-precious gemstones found in the state’s ground, but it could easily have earned a name related to its prolific gold resources too. Some of the gold discoveries in Idaho rivaled those more famous ones in the western U.S. and remain active mines and exploration projects today where miners like Idaho Champion Gold Mines Canada Inc. (CSE:ITKO) (OTCQB:GLDRF), Barrick Gold (NYSE:GOLD) (TSX:ABX), Perpetua Resources Corp. (NASDAQ:PPTA) (TSX:PPTA), and Revival Gold (TSX-Venture:RVG) (OTCQX:RVLGF) are using modern technologies to prove there is plenty of the elusive precious yellow metal in the ground.

Idaho has a long track record of making people rich going back to the first gold rushes in the late 1800’s. More than a dozen significant discoveries have been mined in the state, with one like Yankee Fork producing in the 1870s and then in the mid-1900s when the Yankee Fork Gold Dredge recovered millions of dollars in gold before it became a tourist attraction as one of the best preserved dredges in the West.

Which old lode becomes the new gold bonanza seems more a matter of "if," not "when."

Del Mar, Murray, Atlanta, Salmon River, Warren, Elk City, Pierce, Snake River, etc.…the list is extensive for important gold discoveries in Idaho. Perhaps the best known is the Boise Basin, where the Native Americans said there was so much gold laying around, it could be picked up in handfuls at surface. When word got out, tens of thousands of people flocked to the basin to recover gold that abound in every river, gulch, and tributary.

Today, the state is experiencing a resurgence in mining activity. Perpetua, which is about 20% owned by Barrick, last month showed investment appetite, closing an over-subscribed private placement that raised gross proceeds of $57.5 million for the exploration efforts at its Stibnite Gold Project in north-central Idaho. This month, Revival Gold intersected 6.8 grams per tonne (g/t) gold over 6.0 metres and 12.6 g/t gold over 1.2 metres withing 2.84 g/t gold over 50.0 metres at its Beartrack-Arnett project in Idaho. Revival is looking to bring the mine back into operation after being shuttered in 2000 due to low gold prices.

Idaho Champion Gold Mines Canada Inc. (CSE:ITKO) (OTCQB:GLDRF) (Champion for short) just may live up to its name at its 100%-controlled Champagne Gold Project near the city of Arco, Butte County, Idaho, and its Baner property that neighbors Endomine’s Friday project in what is shaping up to be a long corridor of gold deposits.

While gold is the main focus, Champion also has four early-stage cobalt properties covering nearly 17,000 acres in a copper belt in northern Idaho. Highly speculative, these projects could equate to big value in the future given the importance of cobalt in electric vehicles, but the quickest value generation is found in Champagne and Baner at the moment.

The 26-square-kilometer Champagne project hosts a large number of historic mines, veins, adits and artisanal pits, including a heap leach gold mine that was last in production in 1992. Over 100 drill holes and 1,500+ trench samples underpin an historical resource estimate of 2.3 million tonnes of 1.2 g/t gold equivalent.

Champion is completing requisite work to update and expand the resource estimate. More than 3,800 metres of drilling was completed in 2020, cutting gold and silver mineralization adjoining the historic gold pits, indicating the deposit was bigger than originally thought. IP (induced polarization) surveys further support the contention of wider and deeper mineralization at Champagne.

Investors will be paying close attention for results from an ongoing 8,000-metre drilling program and high-priority targets along more than two kilometres of strike. To lend some color, consider that Revival has about 3.0 million ounces of gold in the Indicated (1.4 million) and Inferred (1.6 million) that in part underscores the company’s C$46-million market cap. Champion has a market cap 82% less that of Revival at just C$8.3 million, giving it plenty of upside potential as it keeps proving out the resources at its projects.