Chalice Gold Mines is the latest Pilbara-focused gold junior to receive significant investor interest as it plans to commence a drill campaign at its West Pilbara gold project this month.

Investors welcomed the news with the dual-listed stock (ASX: CHN, TSX: CXN) jumping as much as 49 per cent to an intraday high of 26c before cooling slightly to 24c at 11:30am AEDT with close to 6 million shares changing hands.

Up to 6500 metres of drilling will begin early this month at the project following encouraging results from copper and gold rock chip sampling of up to 29 per cent copper and 9.5 grams per tonne gold.

The Pilbara region, previously synonymous with iron ore mining, is hosting a mini gold rush as investors pile in to juniors on the hunt for the next precious metal find.

Chalice has applied for further exploration licences covering 881 sq km. Following these applications, the West Pilbara project will cover a total area of 2271 sq km.

The company will begin assessing the newly-secured areas for “Witwatersrand-style” conglomerate-hosted gold mineralisation.

Conglomerate gold in the Pilbara is all the rage at the moment with companies recovering conglomerate-hosted gold nuggets on the surface including De Grey Mining, TSX-listed Novo Resources and Artemis Resources (ASX: ARV) at Purdy’s Reward.

The West Pilbara project, which lies 160 km south-southwest of Karratha, is subject to an earn-in and joint venture with Red Hill Iron (ASX: RHI).