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Deer Horn Reports More About Acquiring Klondike Tellurium-Gold-Silver Property

Deer Horn Capital Inc. has offered additional information related to its acquisition of the Klondike tellurium-gold-silver property from Colorado Klondike LLC.

Cripple Creek, Colorado. Image Credit: Kent Raney/

The Klondike property is situated in the San Juan Mountains in Colorado and was earlier owned by First Solar Inc., one of the biggest solar manufacturers in the world, as a potential primary tellurium source for its cadmium-telluride (CdTe) solar panels.

In early 2012, First Solar stopped its tellurium development program and sold the property to Colorado Klondike LLC.

We have been in talks with Colorado Klondike for over two years to acquire this exceptional tellurium and precious metals prospect. We have long wanted to add another top tellurium asset to augment our Deer Horn gold-silver-tellurium property in BC. The Klondike property not only holds great tellurium potential, it allows us to explore almost year-around.

Tyrone Docherty, President and CEO, Deer Horn Capital Inc.

We believe tellurium demand will increase significantly with the world’s push to renewable energy. As a result, stable domestic supplies of tellurium will become increasingly valuable,” added Docherty.

First Solar bought Klondike due to the unusual tellurium grades of the property. The Colorado Geological Survey (CGS), in collaboration with the Colorado School of Mines, published reports on First Solar’s exploration at Klondike in the 2015 Colorado Mineral and Energy Industry Activities 2014 to 2015 publication.

The CGS specifically noted that “Surface sampling by First Solar, Inc. in 2006 found very high tellurium grades of up to 3.3% (33,000 ppm), along with locally high gold grades. Tellurium grades at Klondike were the highest encountered in the company’s nationwide exploration program.”

Such surface samples are precursory in nature and not decisive proof of a prospective mineral deposit.

For perspective on the tellurium grades at Klondike, the 2018 PEA for the Deer Horn Project noted a tellurium grade of 160 ppm for the indicated resource. Boliden’s Kankberg Mine in Sweden, one of the world’s leading primary tellurium producers, reports an average grade of 188 ppm.

Tyrone Docherty, President and CEO, Deer Horn Capital Inc.

Klondike comes under a region that contains various huge and famous mining districts. This region has generated millions of ounces of gold and silver, as well as base metals.

Creede—which is considered the biggest volcanic-hosted epithermal silver-gold district in Colorado—is located 45 miles (72 km) to the southwest of Klondike.

The huge Summitville mine, which was active in the 1990s, is situated 57 miles (92 km) to the southwest. Cripple Creek, which is being mined by Newmont at present, has generated more than 23 million ounces of gold since 1890 from a tellurium-rich, diatreme-hosted deposit. It is situated 68 miles (110 km) to the northeast of Klondike.

First Solar conducted a very encouraging geophysical survey and geochemical sampling, and they had permits in place for drilling at Klondike. Unfortunately, the company terminated the Raw Materials exploration group in early 2012. The property was never drilled. Some of the rock samples were an order of magnitude higher in Te grade than any samples from anywhere else we investigated. The samples also held high-grade precious metals, with grades up to 33.7 g/t gold and 364.8 g/t silver.

John Keller, General Manager, Colorado Klondike LLC

Keller first examined the Klondike property for First Solar.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) lists tellurium as a “Critical Metal,” mainly for its use in CdTe solar cells and as the main additive to lead, steel, and copper alloys to enhance their machinability.

In a press release dated March 8th, 2021, Rio Tinto declared that it will start construction on a new plant to retrieve tellurium from copper refining at its Kennecott mine next to Salt Lake City, Utah.

Rio Tinto had invested $2.9 million to establish the plant and anticipates that production of tellurium will start in Q4 of 2021, thereby setting up a crucial, new North American supply chain for this significant mineral.

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