Targa Exploration (CSX:TEX) Eyes Major Gold Discovery at Opinaca Project

Source: Targa Exploration

Targa Exploration (CSX:TEX) recently announced a strategic shift towards gold and lithium exploration. This decision aligns with their vision for growth and value creation in the mining sector. CEO Cameron Tymstra explained the rationale behind this pivot and provided insights into the company’s current projects and future plans in a recent interview with MiningFeeds.

“The real driving force behind our transition to more of a gold focus came from the results of our 2023 exploration program at Opinaca. We went there in 2023 looking for lithium and ended up identifying two very large gold anomalies in the till samples that we took across the property. It is these new gold anomalies that has us very excited about the potential to make a meaningful gold discovery at Opinaca in the near future and represents an incredible opportunity for Targa shareholders. With the steep decline in lithium prices since early 2023 and strong performance in gold this year, it was a no-brainer to focus on Opinaca’s gold discovery potential going forward.”

The Opinaca Gold Project has emerged as a major focus for Targa Exploration. The discovery of a 5km x 4km gold anomaly in 2023 marks a significant milestone. CEO Cameron Tymstra elaborated on this discovery and the company’s expectations for the ongoing exploration campaign in the area.

“As soon as we saw the gold-in-till anomalies at Opinaca, we looked for comparable data with other known gold mines and deposits in Quebec with similar glaciation histories. Those known deposits had till anomalies with similar Au values to what we saw at Opinaca but our footprint seems to be even larger, and we have identified a second anomaly about 12km to the southeast of the larger one. Given that Opinaca covers ground with no history of mineral exploration and very sparse government mapping, we believe there is very real blue-sky potential for discovery and this is why we nearly doubled the size of our land package. We just wrapped up our next phase of work at Opinaca and we expect lab results from that program starting in late July and into August. We have submitted nearly 2,600 additional till samples, 130 rock samples from boulders and outcrops and 70 Heavy Mineral Concentrate samples. We believe the data from those samples will help us pinpoint potential bedrock sources of the gold we are seeing in the till. After all, gold doesn’t come from nowhere!”

Targa Exploration’s partnership with Kenorland Minerals has played a crucial role in the Opinaca project. Tymstra highlighted the value this partnership brings and its contribution to the efficient execution of the exploration program.

“Kenorland has a strong track record of discovery success in this sort of glacial terrain in Quebec. They recently used the same till sampling exploration strategy on a project with another partner that ultimately led to a significant gold deposit discovery. That same team is guiding the exploration for us at Opinaca and I am excited to say that the early stage till sampling data we have at Opinaca is notably larger than the early stage results Kenorland had on their other discovery. They are experts at all phases of exploration in Quebec and we benefit from their ability to negotiate preferred rates with their subcontractors as they use those teams for fieldwork across their portfolio all summer long, which ultimately saves our shareholders money.”

The company recently completed a non-brokered private placement, raising $1.375 million. Tymstra explained how Targa plans to allocate these funds across its various projects and outlined key milestones for investors.

“Those funds, combined with funds remaining from another private placement in December put our treasury around C$2.5M at the start of the exploration season. The lion’s share of our exploration budget this year is allocated to Opinaca with limited funds being used on a few basic prospecting programs on our other lithium projects to keep those claims in good standing. The key milestones and news items coming up in the next few months will certainly be the results coming in from the Opinaca field work that we just wrapped up. We also plan to return to Opinaca in September once those results are in to follow-up with additional prospecting and sampling. Our goal this year is ultimately to track down the bedrock source of the gold so we can begin identifying drill targets for a future drill program.”

In addition to the Opinaca project, Targa has a diverse portfolio of lithium and gold projects. CEO Cameron Tymstra provided an overview of these projects and their potential contribution to the company’s resource base.

“We assembled a large portfolio of early stage lithium assets in 2023 that span four Canadian provinces and cover over 400,000ha of land. Our two assets in Manitoba are historic lithium occurrences and our other assets are early stage prospects with various lithium indicators that we have been following up on. With the potential at Opinaca and the slow lithium market, we will be limiting our lithium exploration work this year to basic prospecting and mapping to assess some of our Ontario and Saskatchewan assets for their lithium potential and to keep those mineral claims in good standing.”

The exploration program at Opinaca involves both till sampling and boulder/outcrop prospecting:

“Till sampling is great for covering large areas of ground quickly to assess for mineral potential in the area. However it does not tell us what mineralization style or deposit type those elements in the till are coming from. The in-fill till sampling we just completed will help us narrow down the area where a bedrock source could be located but mineralized boulders will help us understand what sort of rocks we should be looking for in the bedrock. Ultimately its mineralized bedrock that we want to find prior to bringing in a drill, though many gold deposits are buried under till or under a lake and some geophysics may be required to better understand what lies below for picking out drill targets.”

Targa Exploration is listed on multiple stock exchanges. CEO Cameron Tymstra discussed the company’s current market position and steps being taken to enhance visibility and attract a broader investor base.

“We have only recently switched our focus to gold. We have recently rebranded our website and slide deck to reflect this. Now we are getting out to conferences and roadshows, and conducting interviews to spread the word about Opinaca’s big gold potential and bring new eyeballs to Targa.”

“Whether we are conducting exploration in-house or relying on professional partners like Kenorland, engaging with local communities is a very important part of our business. We try to ensure that local stakeholders are fully consulted about our exploration plans well in advance of those activities to create opportunities for relationship building, understand and address concerns, and maximize the benefits that our programs can generate for the local community.”

Looking beyond the current exploration program, Targa Exploration’s long-term goals in the lithium and gold sectors aim to differentiate the company in a competitive market: “Targa started out taking on large projects in underexplored regions. We knew not all of those projects would bear fruit but we only needed one of them to hit in order for us to start creating value for Targa shareholders. We really believe Opinaca was that big hit for us in 2023. We are now focused on uncovering the potential at Opinaca and ultimately making a discovery on behalf of our shareholders. Our board and advisors have a strong track record of discovery success and translating that success in the field to success for investors, and that is exactly the path we want to put Targa on going forward.”

CEO Cameron Tymstra also highlighted some of the upcoming catalysts and major news items that investors should watch for.

“Over the remainder of the summer we expect our sample results to start rolling in from the lab. We have three different types of samples in the lab; fine fraction tills, hard rock samples, and Heavy Mineral Concentrates, which will provide us with different types of data. We also expect to return to Opinaca in September for additional exploration work, the details of which will depend on the results that we are waiting on. This is the most exciting time of the year for Canadian explorers and we are very eager to start seeing results come in and our investors should be as well.”

Targa Exploration’s strategic shift towards gold and lithium exploration reflects a calculated move to capitalize on emerging opportunities and market conditions. With a promising project at Opinaca and a diverse portfolio of lithium and gold assets, Targa Exploration aims to create significant value for its shareholders and position itself as a leading player in the sector.





The above references an opinion and is for information purposes only. It is not intended to be investment advice. Seek a licensed professional for investment advice. The author is not an insider or shareholder of any of the companies mentioned above.
Matthew Evanoff

I specialize in the mining industry, focusing on top global mining stocks. My reporting covers the latest industry news, company/project developments, and profiles of key players. With a degree in finance and economics from the University of Toronto, I've contributed to a wide range of industry publications. Beyond my professional pursuits, I have a keen interest in global business and a love for travel.

By Matthew Evanoff

I specialize in the mining industry, focusing on top global mining stocks. My reporting covers the latest industry news, company/project developments, and profiles of key players. With a degree in finance and economics from the University of Toronto, I've contributed to a wide range of industry publications. Beyond my professional pursuits, I have a keen interest in global business and a love for travel.

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