Bayhorse Silver: Riding the VTEM Rocket

Not quite a rocket, yet, but a year ago Bayhorse Silver (BHS.V) was very close to the end. While it had a silver mine, a mill and an ore sorter, it did not have a final permit which would allow it to actually operate its mine. In some jurisdictions, this would not have been a show stopper and the permit would arrive in short order. But the Bayhorse mine is in Oregon, a state where mining is politically unwelcome. The permit was going to take a while.

BHS CEO Graeme O’Neill scrambled to raise money, put a lot of his own money into a couple of small private placements and managed to arrange a lease for the ore sorter. It was enough to keep the company going, barely. BHS shares fell to $0.015

Then, in October 2023, Hercules Silver (BIG.V) announced that it had drilled into what it described as a “blind copper porphyry” at its property at Cuddy Mountain, 44 kilometres down the Snake River on the Idaho side. BIG went from less than $0.20 to a high of over $1.60 in a matter of weeks. It did a deal with Barrick and now has 23 million dollars to drill out its discovery.

Here is the interesting thing, the Hercules discovery is at what geos refer to as a “suture” between the Izee terrane and the Olds Ferry terrane. Its silver is found in a rhyolite structure. The blind copper porphyry looks to have been part of the geological events which created the silver in the rhyolite.

People began to talk about “closeology”. Bayhorse finds its silver in a rhyolite structure. The Bayhorse mine is at a suture of the Izee and Olds Ferry terranes. The argument from similarity can be and was made and O’Neill raised a little over 1 million dollars in a private placement.

The biggest problem Bayhorse has faced over the years is a lack of money. The million dollar private placement, powered by the Hercules discovery, solved that in the short term. For the first time in its existence, Bayhorse had the money to explore and a reason to spend that money.

The Bayhorse value proposition has always been the re-opening of a successful, past-producing, silver mine with high-grade silver, interesting copper and gold credits and a CEO who understood logistics. O’Neill would certainly look at, and sometimes option, greenfields exploration plays, that was never the company’s focus. O’Neill knew that if he could jump through the permitting hoops, the Bayhorse mine had years of unmined, high grade, silver to extract, concentrate and sell. It still does.

Hercules provided the hint. Was the geology at its Izee/Olds Ferry terrane similar to the geology surrounding Bayhorse? O’Neill had the money to start finding out.

VTEM is a helicopter flown magnetic and resistivity survey which can locate “anomalies” down several hundred meters. Bayhorse had never had the money or a reason to fly a VTEM, now it did and in early January of this year it flew both sides of the Snake River.

While BHS may have been inspired by BIG’s success downriver, its own geological team had scouted out what it believed was a substantial rhyolite structure on the Idaho side which the geos postulated was an extension of the Bayhorse mine rhyolite. That same geo team had long speculated that the Bayhorse mine itself was potentially “over” an epithermal gold/copper intrusion. A structure which would line up with the geological theory being tested at the Hercules property.

The results of the Bayhorse VTEM were outstanding. On the Oregon side, there was an area of low resistivity right under the western end of the Bayhorse mine workings. On the Idaho side, there were three areas of low resistivity and a magnetic high right where the Bayhorse geos expected the rhyolite extension to be. And that high was, in fact, higher than the high at the Bayhorse mine itself.

Here is the map of the magnetic signatures:

Bayhorse Silver, BHS.V, Silver, Copper, gold, Oregon, Idaho

















Here is the map of the resistivity signatures:

Bayhorse Silver, BHS.V, Silver, Copper, gold, Oregon, Idaho



All of a sudden Bayhorse Silver went from a company with a plan to re-open a mine to a company which had four resistivity targets and a huge magnetic anomaly to explore.

Bayhorse has been lucky to have senior geologists advising O’Neill as he drove towards recommissioning the Bayhorse mine. That luck was extended when Spokane-based explorationist Mark Abrams was initially signed on as a consultant to finish off the final permitting process and then as a Director.

Abrams is very much the right man at the right time. He is a fully licensed geologist in both Oregon and Idaho and has conducted exploration programs for majors like Placer Dome and Agnico Eagle. He knows how to run a serious exploration program.

I was fortunate to speak to Abrams a few days ago. He was optimistic about Bayhorse’s prospects. He was also very much an explorationist. “You need boots on the ground,” he told me. “We need to be prospecting. Looking at the sediments in the catchment areas. Get into the drainages.”

“You’re putting dots on the map,” said Abrams.

Which is the great paradox O’Neill and his team are faced with. They can see the high magnetics and the low resistivity. They have targets in general. But in the real world of exploration, this is the earliest possible stage.

Right now, BHS can, and should, stick to its knitting and drill the Big Dog, the footwall and the low resistivity at the Bayhorse mine which is exactly what it is doing. It will take a while to get the surface drilling permits in Idaho. Time which can be spent profitably increasing the staked land, perhaps doing an IP survey on one of the blobs, collecting samples and surface “shows” and figuring out where best to begin drilling what may be a significant copper porphyry.

For Bayhorse shareholders the BIG news and the VTEM results have started an increase in value. From $0.015 to .08 in a couple of months. However, that is likely just the beginning. By drilling underground BHS is creating a hard news stream likely to continue well into Fall.  The Idaho targets are a largely unexpected bonus.

(Disclaimer: I own shares in Bayhorse and Graeme O’Neill is a friend. I also own shares in Hercules. At the moment, BHS is not a client of Do your own due diligence. Call Graeme.)

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