Solitario Resources soars on gold discoveries in South Dakota mine district

The Homestake mine pit in Lead, South Dakota. Credit: Adobe Stock

Solitario Resources’ (TSX: SLR) share price surged to its highest in over three years on Wednesday after discovery of multiple high-grade gold zones at its Golden Crest project in South Dakota.

The new zones — named Holland, Top Dollar and Wildcat — yielded gold values as high as 57.9. 50.2. 42.7, 32.3 and 21.1 grams per tonne gold from reconnaissance rock sampling of outcrop, sub-crop and float, the company said.

These results, according to chief executive Chris Herald, are among the highest-grade samples collected during a first pass sampling program at a newly discovered target zone in the history of Golden Crest.

Herald also said there is a high probability that these three zones may coalesce into a single massive zone with additional work. Further drilling is being planned for the first part of June.

The three new gold zones, all at surface, are found within an area approximately 4 square kilometres, between the Downpour and Sleeping Beauty targets. All five zones are located on Solitario’s new Ponderosa plan of operations (POO) in the easternmost portion of the Golden Crest property.

The Ponderosa area is a contiguous group of mineral claims separate from and not covered by the original Golden Crest POO, but is a part of Solitario’s 100%-owned Golden Crest project area in South Dakota. The new Ponderosa POO proposes low-impact core drilling to test these new gold targets.

Shares of Solitario Resources closed the session 10.9% higher at C$1.22 apiece, for a market capitalization of C$100.3 million ($73.7m). Earlier, it had hit a new 52-week high of C$1.25.

Target-rich project

In August 2021, Solitario acquired a large land position in western South Dakota known as the Golden Crest project. These mineral claims comprised holdings in a gold district that has historically produced from multiple mines, including Homestake.

Classified as a rare kind of gold deposit known as Super Giants (deposits containing over 58 million oz.), Homestake had over 125 years of continuous production between 1876 and 2001, during which it produced over 42 million ounces.

In the latter two decades of operation, limited exploration by the previous Homestake owner led to the identification of five largely unexplored drainage areas in the western part of the district with anomalous gold. Four of these five anomalies had completely unexplained bedrock gold sources, well outside of known historically mined areas.

Solitario currently controls all four of these likely gold sources, and is conducting exploration to further define gold distribution. Its entire land holdings are along the western and southwestern extensions of the Homestake-Wharf mining district that has produced approximately 52 million oz. of gold and contains another 30 million oz. in historical resources.