On Oct 16, 2013 Omineca Mining and Metals acquired CVG Mining Ltd., a private British Columbia corporation, by means of a share exchange.
The Primary asset held by CVG was it's 100% interest in the Wingdam Gold Project located along Lightning Creek near the Wells-Barkerville area of Central British Columbia, 42 km east of Quesnel. See news release dated Oct 5, 2012 for details of the agreement.
The Early Stampede
Until the mid 1800's the economic driver for the territory of British Columbia within the then Dominion of Canada was the fur trade. The interior of this territory was familiar only to indigenous peoples, trappers and Hudson's Bay personnel. That all changed with the discovery of gold in the sand bars of the Fraser River in 1858. More than 30,000 gold seekers travelled north during the summer of 1858 as news of the discovery reached San Francisco. The jumping off point for most was Fort Victoria from which they travelled through the wilderness to the Fraser River of the southern Cariboo Region.
The Faser River find turned out to be disappointing for most and the stampede petered out, those who remained continued their search in this region and in 1859 gold was discovered in the tributaries of the Quesnel River that drain the Cariboo Region.
In the sping of 1861, three prospectors of the Cariboo Region set out from their paying claims on Jack of Clubs Creek to search for richer ground. After an arduous journey into the wilderness they located what was to become known as Lightning Creek. Although they claimed no rich placer gold was found, the creek soon became known for it's rich placer and by 1862 not an inch of vacant ground was available to be staked on the main creek. Lightning Creek ultimately produced more gold than all others in the Cariboo with the sole exception of Williams Creek where Billy Barker made his discovery.
In 1862, about 50km west of Lightning Creek, Billy Barker made his discovery of bonanza gold on Williams Creek and the rush was on in earnest. Within a year Barkerville swelled to more than 10,000 residents.
The End of the Rush
Most of the gold recovered in the Cariboo was in the first five years of the gold rush 1861 - 1866, after that the small mining communities that sprang up fell into decay as the prospectors evaporated into the hills in pursuit of the next "big one".
The Wingdam Project
Located on Lightning Creek 42km east of Quesnel, B.C., the property
overlies both placer and hard-rock tenures along the Deep Lead Channel of Lightning Creek, where topographic conditions have created a deep overburden accumulation which effectively resulted in a large portion of the channel being excluded from conventional surface placer mining activity. Historic and recent results from drilling and seismic surveying show that the channel floor width varies from 6 to 39 m wide and extends 2,430 m along the length of the property. In effect, the gravels comprising the Wingdam Project are pristine, despite the extensive historical economic activity which took place both up-stream and down-stream.
Tthe Wingdam Project was first thought to present a good underground mining prospect in 1896 when Lightning Creek Gold. Gravels & Drainage Company attempted to drive a drift from approximately 8000 ft downstream of the current Wingdam location. This drift was abandoned.
Throughout the 1920's and 30's extensive drilling was carried out to define the location of the channel and establish gold grades. After the No1 shaft and workings failed, the Melvin shaft was sunk 280ft through the bedrock and tunnels drifted upstream and downstream adjacent to the channel. Raises were then established from these drifts toward the channel and ultimately to the bedrock and gravel interface. Once tunneling throught the bedrock reached this interface, the instability of the gravels and silt caused mass flooding of material termed "Cariboo Slum" into the mine which resulted in sink holes to surface. The workings were abandoned.
Another attempt was made to mine the gravel/bedrock interface in 1961 but Cariboo Slum flooded the workings again and the mine was closed.
In 1986 Gold Ridge Resources hydraulically jacked a 42 inch diameter pipe 61ft out into the channel. It provided a stabilizing structure to prevent flooding of Cariboo Slum but it failed to intersect the the bedrock and gravel interface, it was too high by approximately two feet as you can see in the photos to the right. Unfortunately for the company, finances were running out and the equipment was failing, the mine was soon closed.
In 2009, CVG Mining Ltd. acquired the property and in 2012 using a ground freeze method CVG was successful at excavating a 2.44m x 2.44m cross cut drift the entire width of the channel - 23.5m. This represented the first time a drift across the channel had been accomplished. From this bulk sample 173 ounces of gold were recovered using a simple mechanical process of gravity separation. For more information view the Wingdam Property NI 43-101 Report.
On October 5, 2012 Omineca Mining & Metals announced it's intention to acquire all the issued and outstanding shares of CVG Mining Ltd. and on October 16th, 2013 the transaction was completed after shareholder approval.
Updated October 18, 2013
Click on pictures for larger images
Wingdam Project locator map
Historic Wingdam townsite in 1938
Wingdam Mine 2012
Aerial of Wingdam and Pinegrove Properties
Lightning Creek and Wingdam Mine
Wingdam Gold Project and mine site plan
Drawing of Melvin Shaft and early workings
Artist sketch of early mine workings
Cross section of auriferous gravels
Cross section of auriferous gravels
Visible gold in auriferous gravels
Crosscut shaft opening before freezing
Freezing used to support drift walls
Frozen Cross Cut Drift 2012
Ore processing plant underground
Processing ore from cross cut drift
Gold from bulk sample program 2012
Gold nuggets recovered from bulk sample
Wingdam Property NI 43-101 Report
Mining the Wingdam Project Video
Wingdam History Book - 28mb
Jun 24, 2013 - LiDar Survey Complete
Apr 3, 2013 - Geophysics Completed
Oct 5, 2012 - Omineca to Acquire Wingdam
Oct 16, 2013 - Omineca Acquires CVG