Rockridge Resources (TSX-V: ROCK) CEO Jordan Trimble on Strong Start to Drilling at the Knife Lake VMS Project & Recent Developments at Neighboring VMS Deposits in the Flin Flon Greenstone Belt
Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the President and CEO of Rockridge Resources (TSX-V: ROCK), Mr. Jordan Trimble. Jordan, how are you this morning?
Jordan Trimble: I'm doing well, thanks.
Gerardo Del Real: It's a tough junior resource market. You have done a brilliant job of bringing in assets that have had historical work done, and really high-grade assets that have excellent exploration potential. Always good when you start a drill program and accomplish and exceed actually exactly what you were looking to do. You reported your first couple of holes from this initial drill program at the flagship Knife Lake Project. You hit some good numbers. It's shallow, it's high grade. One intercept was 33.1 meters starting from 7.5 meters downhole. We had 1.28% copper and 1.49% copper equivalent. You've got to be happy there.
Can you provide a little bit of context as to what the approach was to these first two holes? Then we can talk about the rest of the program.
Jordan Trimble: Yeah, it's a great start to the program. The first hole, that 33-meter zone basically just below surface of almost 1.5% copper equivalent is a great start to the program. That's better than we were expecting, and it was drilled in an area that we needed to do some confirmation drilling in. This is all working towards a NI 43-101 resource estimate that we should have out in the next several months. The second hole as well, some high-grade mineralization, a 43.8-meter zone of 0.78% copper and about 0.93% copper equivalent. So you have some gold, some silver, some zinc and some cobalt in there as well, but predominantly copper.
Again, great start to the program. These are the first two holes in a 12-hole drill program. We drilled just over 1,000 meters. I will note that some of the holes yet to be announced are expansion holes, and hopefully we'll bump up the historical resource estimate. We're excited to get the final assays back and get the QA/QC done, interpretation all that done so we can announce in probably what would be several more news releases.
Getting back to kind of a quick overview of the strategy, as you're well aware, this is a new copper company. We acquired this project Knife Lake not so long ago, late last year, raised some money, fully funded for this program and for programs going forward. One of the things that we looked at was going into historical, prolific mining districts in good jurisdictions – Saskatchewan ranked #3 by the Fraser Institute globally for mining – and going in with modern exploration techniques and methodologies to test new ideas.
Knife Lake really fit the bill. It's in the Flin Flon Greenstone Belt just northwest of Flin Flon. It's a project that had a lot of historical work in the ‘80s and ‘90s. The last meaningful work program was in 2001, so just under 20 years ago and not a lot of recent work or exploration. That's what exciting for us is we're going into a project that obviously has a historical resource and a lot of exploration discovery potential that we think is relatively untested using modern techniques.
This first drill program, we’re testing some of these new ideas as well as going back into the historical resource. As you can see with the results today, generating some good drill results. As I said, we'll come out with more news releases over the next several weeks and months with additional final assay results, following that a 43-101 resource estimate. That will segue into a summer program, which will focus on some of the regional potential. Again, this is a polymetallic, predominantly copper VMS deposit that is shallow. A lot of the historical work or drilling did not go any deeper than 100 meters.
What's intriguing to us is it's a remobilized VMS deposit. It's come from a primary source. The primary source has not been found yet. There's some indications deeper down that there could be higher grade mineralization at depth. Now that's something yet to be tested.
Also, regionally, VMS deposits typically never occur alone or in isolation, they come in clusters. This is just a one-off deposit on a topographic high that was discovered many decades ago, and not a lot of regional work that was done to follow up on it. We think there's the potential for more to be found regionally, which is what the summer work program. We'll go out there, we'll look for new targets and refine existing targets.
Gerardo Del Real: Excellent, excellent summary. Now, I'll tell you what gets me excited. The VMS deposits obviously tend to happen in clusters. The fact that you're stepping out and doing some exploration and expansion drilling is important. The second thing I'm really excited about is you happen to be in an area that's getting a lot of attention right now, Jordan, from the majors. Can you speak to that a bit? Because I know you have your finger on the pulse of what's going on there nearby.
Jordan Trimble: Yeah. For those that aren't familiar with the Flin Flon Camp, it's really been one of the more prolific mining jurisdictions in Canada for a very, very long time. Discovery of mineralization in 1915. It's produced over 170 million tonnes of sulfide ore from over 30 deposits. One of the interesting things too with Flin Flan is over 50% of deposits have been advanced to production. When you find these VMS deposits, they're typically a bit lower in tonnage, but can be quite high grade. A lot of these deposits that have been found in this part of Canada are put through to production. We've now seen over the last little while a lot of money go into infrastructure, road, rail power, water. In particular, just south of our project, some new power lines that have gone in there. The infrastructure's good in the area. The other thing too is just your timelines, right?
Typically, there's less than 7 years from discovery through to development with reduced capital expenditures on these deposits. So good infrastructure, long history of mining, Flin Flon's known for that. In particular in the last year and a half, because I will note, the last 6 or 7 years we haven't been a great mining market. In the Flin Flon Camp, you do see it go through and suffer if you will from the cyclicality of the commodities and metals sector, right?
We've seen it now coming out of a bear market. In particular, in the last year and a half, you've had some notable regional developments. This is important for where we stand in the area. Start with Glencore. Glencore's partnership with a junior miner called Foran just south of us in the west of Flin Flon. They're helping advance Foran's flagship project, the McIlvenna Bay deposit, through a feasibility study.
It's good to see one of the largest commodities companies in the world take an interest in this part of the world, in this jurisdiction. Then more recently, just in the last several months, you've had a couple of other notable developments in the area starting with a company called Rockcliff, not to be confused with Rockridge, active in the area recently announced a $30 million dollar bought deal with a private equity group out of London, Greenstone. Their plan is to develop and mine from a handful of VMS deposits, similar to what we have at Knife Lake in the area, and then ship the ore, process the ore at a mill called the Bucko Mill, a hub and spoke strategy.
To see that kind of money come into the area for a junior company is quite exciting, needless to say. Then last but not least, the big company historically in this area is Hudbay, multi-billion dollar mining company. It's been a tough call it 10 years for them in the area at Flin Flon. There's been some good news more recently, a new discovery that they've made right beside their existing Lalor Mine. That's reinvigorated the area a little bit as well.
You've had in the last year and a half three major regional developments in the Flin Flon Camp. I think that that's going to bring more interest back to this area. We've seen some very exciting discoveries over the last 30 or 40 years. They're VMS polymetallic deposits, so they're high grade. That's something I think for investors to get excited about because you're going in there, you have the potential to drill high-grade results. Anyone investing in exploration discovery stories, that's really where you get the most bang for your buck.
Gerardo Del Real: Couldn't agree more. You mentioned it had been a tough 10 years for them. It seems like for us in the resource space, 8 of the last 10 have been very tough years. We know that the longer this market takes to bottom, the more violent the upside is when it turns. That's why we are all investors and speculators in this space. Congrats, Jordan, on an excellent start to an important drill program. I love the strategy of getting out there, validating historical results, exceeding those, pivoting to some expansion drilling, 43-101. That's a clear path towards an accretive strategy, obviously. Congrats there. I look forward to having you back on to report on the newest results as they come out.
Jordan Trimble: Perfect. Thanks for having me. We'll be chatting soon.
Gerardo Del Real: Awesome. Thanks, Jordan.
Jordan Trimble: Thank you.