The gold deposit at Sunrise Dam was discovered in August 1988 and gold mining operations started in 1995, mining ore in an open pit, the Mega Pit, which, in 2008, had reached a depth of 440 metres. In March 1997, the first gold was poured at the mine. In 1999, AngloGold acquired the mine through a takeover of Acacia Resources Ltd, a move that also gained it a 33% stake in the Boddington project, which it sold in early 2009 for $1.5 billion. Acacia, formerly Billiton PLC, was delisted from the Australian Stock Market on 11 January 2000.
In 2003, underground operations commenced.
In 2006, AngloGold signed a contract for conversion of its diesel power generators to liquefied natural gas as a cost-saving matter as well as to protect the environment.
In the June quarter of 2009, the mine produced 94,000 ounces of gold, a slight reduction to the previous quarter. At the same time, cost fell by 24% due to the use of existing stockpiles.
During 2009, AngloGold discussed the option of processing ore from the Fortitude deposit, 36 km south of Sunrise Dam and owned by Midas Resources, at the mine.
The majority of the mine workers are on a fly-in fly-out roster, with Skippers Aviation providing a charter service twice-daily from Monday to Friday.