top of page
Taiton Highway Project.jpg



The Highway Project  (Figure 1) is situated approximately 590 km from the state capital of Adelaide and 186 km north of Port Augusta and is bisected by the Stuart Highway (A87).


The nearest town is Glendambo which is an important stopping point on the Stuart Highway as there are no further facilities until Coober Pedy 254 km to the north.


Access to the site is via tracks off the main Stuart Highway (Figure 1) by the Bil La Kalin Road to the east and the Hawks Nest Bore Road for northern access. An all-weather airstrip is situated at Glendambo.

Taiton020A Highway Project March 2024.jpg

Figure 1. Regional location of the Highway proejct in South Australia.

The Highway project is interpreted to host a large-scale Mo-enriched polymetallic porphyry or an intrusive-type mineral system,  which prior explorers have overlooked. The target style of Mo Porphyry further supports the interpretation of the area for extensional rifting.

Magnetic lineaments east of Lake Labyrinth, Gawler Craton, S.A. are interpreted as basin structures relating to intra-cratonic rifting coeval with the Olympic Metallogenic Event.

Historical drill logs indicate that Lower Gawler Range Volcanics (LGRV) are interlayered with sediments currently classified to older stratigraphic units.

The results from zircon analyses from drillholes samples at the South Australia Drill Core Reference Library suggest historic logging incorrectly assigned various stratigraphic horizons to older formations such as the Tarcoola Formation (BB 2, SARIG 9610, 536717E, 6608898 N).

Zircons Indicating Olympic Metallurgical Event (OME)


The zircon geochronological work has now been completed by the Company and this provides compelling evidence for not only an extension to the OME Domain, but also that Merino itself is likely a shallow hydrothermal system (i.e., by way of the zircon isotope analyses.


The zircons analysed which was extracted from the porphyritic granite (as shallow as 7m depth), appear indicative of hydrothermal mixing of fluids concentrated in Pb, U and REEs. The inference here is that a near-surface, epithermal-style mineral deposit is responsible for producing these metalliferous anomalies.


Zircon grains extracted now indicate previously reported 1650 Ma-age lithologies to be well-constrained at 1598 ± 8.8.Ma. contemporaneous to the OME.

Taiton can also confidently state that the zircon geochemistry analyses indicate a magma related to mineralised porphyry and haematitic IOCG systems with high oxidation state, high-water content, and a high degree of fractionation.

The initial interpretation is for the project to host a large hydrothermal system, with successive overprinting and evidence of previous exploration not vectoring a source under shallow cover.

Figure 11. Distribution of drill holes with re-dated zircons returning a U-Pb age coincident with an OME age-extension - Taiton Resources

Figure 2. Distribution of drill holes with re-dated zircons returning a U-Pb age coincident with an OME age-extension. Such new data has both academic and economic significance.

The three drill holes re-examined and re-dated by the Company have been referenced and include (Figure 2):

  1. BB 2, SARIG DH No. 9610, 536717 E, 6608898 N’

  2. BDH 2, SARIG DH No. 6699, 491036 E, 6651392 N,

  3. KIN 12, SARIG DH No. 9672, 527957 E, 6620703 N,

Besides the geochronological analyses, the zircon geochemistry indicates a magma potentially related to mineralised porphyry and haematitic IOCG-type systems with a high oxidation state, high water content and a high degree of fractionation. Taiton interprets these indices as a blind hydrothermal system lying in the vicinity of the Merino Prospect.

CSIRO Hydrochemical Survey supports a hydrothermal active zone for the Highway Project

In addition, hydrogeochemical water bore analyses undertaken by CSIRO/GSSA in the area of the Merino Prospect, are suggestive of the presence of hydrothermal systems at shallow depth (which tends to corroborate the Taiton data).


Reconnaissance exploration by previous explorers in the area found broadly distributed and highly anomalous Mo, Ag, Pb and Zn from sub-cropping basement rocks as shallow as 8m.


Quaternary alluvial, aeolian and lacustrine sediments blanket most Highway tenements.

Despite mostly thin cover (Figure 3), the distribution of concealed older units is not comprehensively documented.

Exploration over the Merino Prospect

In 2023, the company conducted an Ultra-Fine sampling program that successfully identified anomalous Molybdenum in the northern part of the Merino prospect.

The anomaly was drill tested, and a 1km width of Mo mineralisation was discovered (Figure 4). This proves that the mineral system at Highway near the Merino prospect can produce the scale required for an economic discovery.

The results of the second phase of drilling show improvement in the width, height, and continuity of molybdenum mineralisation in the northernmost line drilled; however, the tenor and, more importantly, the geology indicate that the Merino prospect represents the lower-grade core of a system. 

Exploration in 2024

Based on the interpretation that the Merino prospect represents the core of a potential molybdenum-bearing intrusion, Taiton will now focus exploration away from Merino into other areas that may not be susceptible to preservation concerns. 


Preliminary reconnaissance exploration has identified the high-priority Garfield prospect approximately 8km to the south-southeast of Merino, as shown in Figure 5. Rock samples exhibit evidence of hydrothermal activity, including quartz veining/breccia, chalcedony, dissolution indicating an epithermal system, and a sample with iron oxide present.

Following an extended interpretation of the data collected from our previous exploration activities in 2023, the company has expanded on the regional prospectivity within the Highway project.

These reconnaissance UF soil sampling programs will now cover two new prospects: Pluto and Snoopy (Figure 6). This will make the next phase of sampling over three prospects (including Garfield).


This is the first step in Taiton’s expanded exploration of the Highway project to assess multiple styles of mineralisation, including precious and base metals and rare earth elements (REE). This round of UF sampling is expected to be completed by the end of March.

HIghway Project - CSIRO_Cover and Residual Gravity.png

Figure 3: The Highway project is within the area identified by CSIRO assessment of S.A. hydrogeochemical data indicating anomalous Olympic Dam group (IOCG compatible) elements (Blue dashed lines).  The coloured contour image indicates the depth of cover (Thinkckeding from West to East).  The diagram also shows the Residual gravity contours anomalies of the Highway proejct.


Figure 4: Merino cross-section 6,621,300 N highlighting >100 ppm Mo drill hole intersects (red boxes) within a broader envelope of anomalous molybdenum (>50 ppm Mo).

New Areas.jpg

Figure 5: Aeromagnetic image highlighting the potential extent of the Hiltaba Suite microgranite (HSG) and location of rock samples exhibiting evidence of hydrothermal activity including, quartz veining / breccia (red box), chalcedony (orange box), dissolution indicating epithermal system (yellow box) and sample with iron oxide present (green).


Figure 6: Location of the new Prospects in the Highway project.

bottom of page