Paramount Gold and Silver reported that new core drilling at its 100%-owned Sleeper gold project in Nevada has intercepted gold and silver mineralization west of the Pad zone and below the Sleeper pit operated by Amax Gold from 1986 to 1996. Paramount recently completed 24 core holes totaling 10,313 m at Sleeper in a program designed to extend known resource areas, acquire material for metallurgical testing, and update the resource model. 

A hole designated PGC-13-034 intercepted numerous intervals with gold and silver values well above the average resource grade, including several intercepts above 2 g/mt gold. The most significant intercept of 32 m averaging 1.47 g/mt gold and 1.9 g/mt silver was found 100 m directly below the bottom of the Sleeper pit, demonstrating that the original high-grade Sleeper structure remains open at depth. 

Paramount has commissioned SRK Consulting to update the Sleeper resource estimate to incorporate the data from 44 new drill holes totaling more than 15,000 m completed since the resource estimation used in a 2012 preliminary economic assessment. Paramount is developing a comprehensive new geological and structural model to be used in the updated resource estimation and to design a new exploration program with two objectives: to improve the economics of the existing preliminary economic assessment by adding resources at a better grade and to discover new, higher-grade structures similar to the original Sleeper mine within the large claim block assembled by Paramount. 

Solitario Exploration & Royalty Corp. has reported further outstanding drilling results from its high-grade Bongará zinc project in Peru. The drilling program was managed and entirely funded by Solitario’s joint-venture partner Votorantim Metais.

Included in the results are intersections of 10.7 m grading 45.60% zinc, 5.25% lead, and 106.71 g/mt silver and 5 m grading 38.22% zinc, 3.89% lead and 60.76 g/mt silver. All of the newly reported drill-hole intercepts were underground core holes drilled from the San Jorge tunnel. 

Underground drilling at Bongará began in the first quarter of 2013 and was completed in the second quarter. Twenty-four core holes were drilled during this period. Votorantim is incorporating the results into a new resource model as part of an effort to complete a pre-feasibility study on Bongará by mid-2014.

Votorantim Metais can earn up to a 70% interest in the Bongará project by committing to place the project into production based upon a positive feasibility study. After earning 70%, Votorantim Metais has further agreed to finance Solitario’s 30% participating interest for construction. Solitario will repay the loan facility through 50% of its net cash flow distributions.

Seabridge Gold reported in mid-August the discovery of a very large, higher grade core zone at the Deep Kerr deposit on its 100% owned KSM project 65 km northwest of Stewart, British Columbia. Deep Kerr sits down-dip from and is in part continuous with the Kerr deposit. 

Drilling on Deep Kerr has intercepted significant mineralized intervals containing total metal values per metric ton that are approximately two times KSM’s proven and probable reserve average. Some intervals exceed 1% copper and include gold grades as high as 1.7 g/mt.

Seabridge CEO Rudi Fronk said, “We challenged our team to improve KSM, and they have certainly done so. What’s more, they think that the best core zone at KSM has yet to be found. They have two more targets they plan to explore this year. However, the first priority is to infill at Deep Kerr this summer, enabling us to estimate an initial resource later this year.”

Copper Fox Metals has established a wholly owned subsidiary, Desert Fox Copper, to act as its primary operating vehicle responsible for exploration and development activities on its Van Dyke and Sombrero Butte copper projects in Arizona. Teck Resources has taken over as operator of the Teck/Copper Fox Shaft Creek joint venture in British Columbia (E&MJ, August 2013, p. 22), freeing-up Copper Fox personnel for assignment to Desert Fox Copper.

The 1,100-acre Van Dyke project is located in the Globe-Miami mining district, 90 miles east of Phoenix. The 2,887-acre Sombrero Butte property is located in the Bunker Hill mining district 44 miles northeast of Tucson and nine miles east of the San Manuel mine.

Desert Fox is stepping-up activities at both projects, including compilation and review of more than 6,000 boxes of core and samples from 72 drill holes, diamond drilling, and environmental and geotechnical studies on the Van Dyke copper deposit and a surface and geophysical exploration program on the Sombrero Butte property.

At Van Dyke, work this year has the objective of establishing what, if any, additional drilling needs to be completed to establish a current resource. At Sombrero Butte, work is focusing on locating the source of mineralized breccia pipes on the property.