To say that the market has been exacting a certain toll on the junior exploration arena would be a colossal understatement. Even the highest quality asset-rich entities are being stripped down to levels that defy logic. This current environment reminds me of the junior sector at the beginning of the previous bull run earlier this century… when dollars could be bought for dimes.

There’s opportunity amidst all of this carnage… y’all.

For those of you with meaningful exposure who continue to take advantage of current valuations—those who understand the cyclical nature of this sector and are positioned for the (inevitable) bull run—I tip my Fedora to you.

Apollo Silver (APGO.V) – (APGOF.OTC) – (6ZF0.FRA)

  • 174.46 million shares outstanding
  • $34.02M market cap based on its recent $0.195 close

Apollo refuses to bend a knee

Apollo Silver continues aggressively pushing its flagship asset—the Calico Silver Project located in mining-friendly San Bernardino County, California—along the exploration and development curve.

(CLICK on the images below to amplify)

On June 29, the Company dropped the following headline…

Initial Assay Results from 2022 Drill Program at Calico Silver Project Show Broad, High-Grade Silver and Expanded Gold Horizon

The drill hole values presented in this release represent the first assays to flow from a planned 10,000-meter drill campaign at Calico. As of June 26, the Company completed 37 holes for 4,139.50 meters, and the results continue to demonstrate broad, high-grade intervals of near-surface silver mineralization.

Results have also verified and expanded the gold mineralized horizon along the Barstow-Pickhandle contact, as discussed in the Company’s news release dated January 11, 2022.

Apollo states that this current phase of drilling is part of the multi-component technical program designed to upgrade and expand an Inferred mineral resource that currently stands at 166 million ounces of silver (contained with 58.1 million tonnes of material grading 89 g/t Ag).*

Highballer’s recent take on this Inferred ounce count – Apollo declares a 166 million oz silver resource at its flagship Calico Project in San Bernardino County, California.


Continuous, near-surface high-grade intercepts from this June 29 press release include**:

  • Hole W22-RC-010
    • 169 g/t Ag over 55.0 metres from surface;
  • Hole W22-RC-009
    • 131 g/t Ag over 51.0 meters from 4.0 meters depth down hole;
  • Hole W22-RC-008
    • 132 g/t Ag over 94.0 meters from surface;
  • Hole W22-RC-007
    • 105 g/t Ag over 49.0 meters from surface;
  • Hole W22-RC-006
    • 204 g/t Ag over 36.0 meters from 8.5 meters depth down hole;
      • including 498 g/t over 1.5 meters from 25.0 meters depth down hole; and
  • Hole W22-RC-005
    • 131 g/t Ag over 75.0 meters from 2.5 meters depth down hole.

Observed from a different angle. Note the shallow ‘at’ and ‘near-surface’ nature of these thick 100 g/t-plus silver hits…


  • Hole W22-RC-008
    • 0.235 g/t Au over 52.5 meters from 107.5 meters depth down hole;
      • including 0.632 g/t Au over 3.0 meters from 128.5 meters depth down hole;
      • and including 1.215 g/t Au over 1.5 meters from 157 meters depth down hole;
  • Hole W22-RC-009
    • 0.215 g/t Au over 9.0 meters from 145.0 meters depth down hole;
  • Hole W22-RC-005
    • 0.260 g/t Au over 21.0 meters from 95.5 meters depth down hole;

Here, gold intercepts are reported for eight RC holes that tagged the gold-mineralized horizon at the Barstow-Pickhandle contact (maps above and below). Review of historic drilling and recent surface mapping by Apollo concluded that there is evidence to suggest that the entire 2.2 km long contact between the Barstow sediments and Pickhandle volcaniclastics is prospective for gold (see news release dated January 11, 2022). These latest drilling results show that the gold mineralized horizon is more laterally extensive and thicker than historic drilling indicated.

This next slide shows Calico’s mineralized Ag/Au potential below the current (conceptual) pit model…

I suspect Apollo is in the early innings of defining a global resource at Calico. There’s ample opportunity to grow this ounce count along strike and at depth.

(For a complete list of assay values, see tables 1 and 2 in the guts of this press release)

Calico is characterized as low-sulfidation, epithermal-vein type and disseminated-style silver-barite type mineralization.

I was delighted to see Calico’s barite component brought to light in this press release. The mineral—Barium sulfate BaSO4—is one of 23 critical minerals listed in a new United States Geological Survey report that are deemed “minerals essential to economic and national security and vulnerable to supply chain disruptions due to reliance on foreign imports.”


Of the 10 holes being reported, major element analysis was undertaken on four holes (W22-RC-01, -002, -003B and -004B) to support rock type characterization and to provide a preliminary assessment of barite mineralization. Using a 2% barite cutoff grade, holes W22-RC-001 and W22-RC-002 showed 28 meter to 45 meter thick horizons of barite concentrations of between 2 to 13.9% from approximately 13 meters down hole. Holes W22-RC-003B and W22-RC-004B showed little barite mineralization. As part of Apollo’s metallurgical test program, the purity and grade of barite is being assessed to determine if the barite at Calico meets or exceeds the minimum standards for drilling-grade barite as defined by the American Petroleum Institute.

Cherty sandstone with thick barite vein in the Barstow Formation. This is the common host of disseminated silver mineralization at Calico

Calico’s barite mineralization may hold significant economic potential. How much remains to be seen (details pending).

Tom Peregoodoff, CEO:

I am very pleased with initial results from our ongoing 2022 drill program. Results from these first 10 holes validate the high-grade, shallow, and continuous nature of the silver mineralization at Calico. Further, they have verified and expanded the excellent gold target at Waterloo. Finally, they have added very valuable geological information that is being incorporated into the current drill program and will allow us to optimize the remainder of this work. With more than 1,500 samples currently being processed at ALS, shareholders can expect to see regular release of new assay results.”

Adding environmental and permitting depth to the team

Already boasting a top-shelf crew in every conceivable respect, Apollo recently bulked up its team roster with a new hire in Collette Brown-Rodriguez and the engagement of George KenlineAdding Deep Environmental and Permitting Experience to the Apollo Team.

Ms. Brown-Rodriguez, a member of the Salish Kootenai Tribe and descendant of the Navajo Nation, has over 20 years of experience as a project manager and program development leader focused on tribal affairs within the mining and natural resources industries.

Mr. Kenline, one of California’s leading experts in implementing the Surface Mining and Reclamation Act of 1975, is a California licensed Engineering Geologist and Hydrogeologist with over 30 years of experience. His work history in San Bernardino County spans the environmental review processes for permitting mineral resource extraction, water supply development, reclamation, and habitat restoration.

Clearly, Brown-Rodriguez and Kenline represent two highly strategic additions to the Apollo team.

Following the ‘smart money’

Jupiter Asset Management, a prominent UK-based precious metals fund, reported on SEDAR that it recently picked up 5.8 million Apollo common shares. The fund now carries an 11% interest in the Company. 5.8 million shares strike me as weighty accumulation—they obviously see the latent potential in Calico’s subsurface layers.

Roughly one year ago, Apollo closed a $52.9 Million financing priced at $0.75 (with a half $1.25 warrant good for two years). Institutional shareholders backing this pure-play (US-focused) silver exploration and development company include Jupiter Investment Management, Sprott Asset Management, Delbrook Capital Advisors, Commodity Capital AG, Terra Capital, Swiss Asia Capital, Vestcor Inc., and Orrell Capital Management.

The Company’s current stock price is teetering on the twenty-cent level. This may represent an exceptional buying opportunity (plz due your own due diligence).

Forum Energy Metals (FMC.V)

  • 170.82 million shares outstanding
  • $20.05M market cap based on its recent $0.12 close

On June 29, Forum dropped the following headline…

Forum Intersects Uranium Mineralization at the Wollaston Project, Athabasca Basin, Saskatchewan

Forum’s Wollaston Uranium Project is strategically located 10 kilometers southeast of Cameco’s Rabbit Lake mill and 30 kilometers southeast of Orano/Denison’s McClean Lake mill—two mills that will inevitably be looking for future feed. The project enjoys good access—the road to Rabbit Lake skirts the western edge of the Wollaston property.

(CLICK on the images below to amplify)

Location of Forum’s Wollaston Uranium Project. The project is located on Highway 905, 10km south of Cameco’s Rabbit Lake Uranium Mill and 30km south of Orano/Denison’s McClean Lake Uranium Mill (yellow squares). Uranium mineral deposits are outlined in red.

In their first drill campaign at this wholly-owned project, one that barely scratched the surface due to difficult ground conditions at the time, the Company succeeded in delivering the following results:

  • Anomalous radioactivity in four holes with up to 0.21% uranium and associated nickel in an area of intense alteration, bleaching and secondary hematite at the Gizmo target.
  • Boron (an indicator of proximal uranium bearing fluids) returned up to 2,200ppm.
  • Nickel, copper and cobalt locally elevated (up to 365ppm, 114ppm and 318ppm respectively) within the alteration zone at Gizmo.

The above-noted uranium hit—plus elevated boron, nickel, copper, and cobalt values—are indicative of a (uranium) mineralizing event in these subsurface layers.

This limited drill campaign probed the Gizmo gravity target, where four out of five holes intersected extreme alteration returning anomalous geochemistry, including:

  • WO-01: 11 metres of 1,555ppm boron from 79 to 90 metres depth;
  • WO-02: 10 centimetres of 2,120ppm uranium and 365ppm nickel from 163.45 to 163.55 metres depth;
  • WO-03: 6.5 metres of 94ppm uranium; 287ppm boron from 101.6 to 105.4 metres depth;
  • WO-04: 0.5 metres of 143ppm uranium from 111.5 to 112 metres depth; and 5.5 metres of 190ppm uranium from 136.3 to 141.8m depth.
Drill Hole Locations on Gravity Background. The dashed lines are the traces of historical EM conductors. An airborne electromagnetic survey is planned for the entire project area in advance of further drilling.

The Company believes they’re onto something significant in Wollaston’s (shallow) subsurface stratum.

Ken Wheatley, Vice President, Exploration:

We are quite pleased to see the combination of the extreme alteration and elevated geochemistry at the Gizmo gravity target. Drill hole WO-02 has the strongest uranium mineralization and the depth of the alteration is increasing to the south. This is a great start for our first drill program on this project that has rapidly become one of our premium projects.”

While on the subject of Forum’s VP of Exploration, Mr. Wheatley is no stranger to the complex geology underpinning the prolific Athabasca Basin. He boasts an enviable track record of eight uranium (deposit) discoveries, four of which became producing mines.

Wheatley and his crew have identified a series of high-priority targets at Wollaston that require follow-up exploration—a number of conductors and associated gravity lows.

The Company is planning an airborne EM survey as its next step along the exploration curve. This cutting-edge geophysical survey will cover the entire project and will upgrade the historic EM data in detail, accuracy, and consistency.

Additional ground gravity surveys may be initiated over areas of conductor complexity identified by the upcoming airborne geophysics.

The Company went on to state that, based on these encouraging initial results, further drilling is strongly recommended on the Gizmo target, both to the south because of the increasing alteration, and to the west and north, where the historic electromagnetic (EM) conductor lies.

Cross-Section WO-01 and 02. Note the large area of alteration at the top of the holes, which is considerably more developed within WO-02. Further drilling is recommended in this direction, as well as to the west on this target.
Uranium mineralization in core returned from WO-2 and WO-4.

For a sweeping view of the Wollaston project and the methodology Forum is deploying to zero in on potentially economic (high-grade) mineralization, the following interview featuring CEO Rick Mazur and VP of Exploration, Ken Wheatley, offers much greater detail.

A busy energy metal exploreco

Forum is active on multiple fronts. Aside from Wollaston, which is quickly rising to top-shelf status, the Company’s Northwest Athabasca Joint Venture – a JV with NexGen, Cameco, and Orano (Forum holds a 39.25% interest) – will be generating newsflow in the weeks and months ahead. We should also see news flow from the 105,000 hectare Thelon Basin Uranium Project in Canada’s Nunavut Territory and from the Company’s extensive energy metal project pipeline in Saskatchewan and Idaho.

Looking under the hood, Forum is in good shape with roughly $3.5 mill in the till and a monthly burn rate of approximately $80k.

With a market cap of a mere $20M and a stock plumbing the low end of a 5-year trading range, current prices may offer a low-risk entry point on a strategically positioned, expertly helmed energy metal play.

Slide #4 on the Company’s pitch deck

Among one of the more recent supportive fundamentals in the uranium arena—Japan’s plan to reopen nuclear power plants due to record-breaking heat – BBC News


—Greg Nolan

Full disclosure: Highballer was compensated for the above Forum and Apollo coverage. The author owns shares in both companies.

* The MRE has been prepared by Derek Loveday, P. Geo. of Stantec Consulting Services Ltd., in conformance with Canadian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy’s “Estimation of Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserves Best Practices” guidelines and are reported in accordance with the Canadian Securities Administrators NI 43-101. It is effective January 28, 2022. Mineral resources are not mineral reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. There is no certainty that any mineral resource will be converted into a mineral reserve. Mr. Loveday is an independent Qualified Person for Apollo’s MRE. Please refer to the Company’s news release dated February 9, 2022, for more information.

** High-grade at the Calico Project is interpreted to be 100 g/t Ag or more. Silver assays are reported at a 50 g/t silver cut-off grade with up to 4.5 m dilution and are uncapped. Lengths reported are down hole lengths and may not represent true widths.

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