White Cliff Minerals Limited (ASX:WCN) shares were trading as much as 50% higher today after the explorer received share applications exceeding A$1.5 million in a heavily oversubscribed share placement plan.
White Cliff shares were last trading 37.5% up at $0.011, representing an 83% hike from last month.
The company was originally targeting a more modest raising of $900,000 to fund exploration across its portfolio, but was met with an overwhelming shareholder response.
The investor interest follows a streak of positive exploration results from the company's Aucu gold project in the Kyrgyz Republic, where some of the latest trenching has delivered exceptionally high grades.
This work established a fourth major mineralised system containing high-grade gold at surface within the project. The new area, now known as the Camp gold zone (CGZ), is parallel to the three previously discovered structures.
Assays from the new trenching recorded 3 metres at 23.8g/t gold, including 1 metre at 53.6g/t gold.
Mineralisation at Aucu has consistently demonstrated visible gold and reinforced the reputation of the surrounding region for hosting rich gold endowments.
A number of operating mines are within 50 kilometres of the site, including Charaat Gold's (AIM:CGH) 6-million-ounce Charaat mine and Fortune LLC's 5-million-ounce Ishtamberdy mine.
SGZ, LGZ and UGZ
CGZ occurs 400 metres south of the Southern gold zone (NYSE:SGZ) and has the same sub-vertical dip and west-northwest orientation.
SGZ is just 400 metres south of the inferred Aucu gold resource of 1.2 million tonnes at 4.2g/t gold for 156,000 ounces and is easily accessible from existing tracks.
Ongoing drilling is also targeting the upper and lower gold zones as well as extensions of these zones to the east and west. White Cliff intends to drill up to 3,000 metres (weather permitting) over the next few weeks consisting of about 30 holes with depths ranging from 50 metres to 200 metres.
On completion of drilling at SGZ, the rig will move up the hill to the Lower gold zone (NYSE:LGZ) to test extensions to the visible gold panned from a 1 kilogram sample taken from the outcrop at 2,730 metres elevation. Mineralisation occurs as a 10 metre wide zone cutting across silicified sandstone and mudstone.
This in turn will be followed by drilling at the Upper gold zone (UGZ), where visible gold was initially panned from outcrop at 3,200 metre elevation.
The UGZ resource average grade is 5.2 g/t gold. The best intersection to date is 4 metres at 22.3 g/t gold. Mineralisation occurs as multiple 1-3 metre wide shear zones.
In addition to exploration at the Kyrgyz properties, White Cliff intends to use funds raised by the share purchase plan for the drilling of numerous nickel sulphide targets at the Merolia nickel and copper project in Western Australia, where recent ground electromagnetic MLEM surveys have identified several conductors occurring along the basal contact of interpreted ultramafic units within a layered mafic-ultramafic intrusion.
Merolia is located close to the Windarra nickel mine and associated infrastructure.
White Cliff has identified five high impact nickel targets in a similar setting to Independence Group's (ASX:IGO) Nova-Bollinger nickel-copper-cobalt deposits.
Three of these are untested electromagnetic conductors are on basal contacts with high nickel in-soils.
White Cliff is planning to carry out 1,000 metres of drilling to test two targets on the basal contact within a large ultramafic unit that is 7 kilometres by 1.5 kilometres.
The raising is an outstanding result given the difficult equity market conditions and reflects growing recognition that the company's projects have significant upside potential.
This is particularly the case at Aucu, which has delivered excellent trenching results in recent weeks, including grades as high as 53.6g/t gold.
The funding puts White Cliff on a significantly stronger financial footing, opening the door for more potentially revelatory development activities. Financing this activity sets up White Cliff to extend the share momentum it has enjoyed since it starting encountering high-grade gold at Aucu.
The close proximity and apparent similarities between CGZ and previously established gold zones bode well for the success of future development using the current exploration techniques.
With drill samples from SGZ dispatched to the laboratory - initial results are expected in early November - anticipation is building. SGZ is located just 400 metres south of the early Aucu gold resource of 156,000 ounces grading 4.2 g/t gold.
Aucu benefits from potential drivers in several zones, namely the SGZ, CGZ, LGZ and UGZ areas.
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