PREMIER GOLD MINES LIMITED (TSX:PG) (“Premier”) is pleased to announce additional assay results from an on going drill program at the Helen Zone on the Company’s Cove Gold Project, located in the Eureka-Battle Mountain Trend in Nevada. These results confirm the exceptional expansion potential of the deposit that is open along strike of the Cove anticline to the northwest and southeast.
The Helen Zone deposit represents one of the highest grade undeveloped gold deposits in Nevada. The current drill program is aimed at expanding mineralization within both the Upper and Lower Helen Zones. To date, nine reverse circulation holes and four core holes have been completed with assays. The AX drill program, which commenced in the fall of 2011, was designed to step out from the known Helen Zone resource. Drilling has expanded the mineralization by 125 metres (400 feet) to the northwest and an additional 94 metres (300 feet) to the southeast where the favourable horizon remains wide open for expansion. High-grade gold has been intersected in multiple holes.
Highlight intervals from the most recent drill holes include:
- 11.75 g/t Au across 20.42 m (0.34 oz/t across 67.0 feet) in hole AX-8A - a wedge hole drilled to provide a full cut of mineralization in the core part of the deposit using core.
- 4.82 g/t Au across 10.97 m (0.14 oz/t across 36 feet) in the Upper Helen Zone and 8.01 g/t Au across 5.94 m (0.23 oz/t across 19.5 feet) in the Lower Helen Zone in hole AX-11.
- 7.09 g/t Au across 24.38 m (0.21 oz/t across 80 feet) in the Upper Helen Zone and and 9.26 g/t Au across 5.18 m (0.27 oz/t across 17 feet) in the Lower Helen Zone in hole AX-12.
“Drill results from the step out drilling along the strike of the axial plane of the Cove anticline continue to support our geologic model that the Helen Zone is a bedding controlled Carlin-style deposit which is punctuated by areas of high-grade where feeder structures intersect the axial plane of the anticline,” stated Brian Morris, Vice-President Exploration for Premier. “Historic data suggest that this trend could continue for several hundred metres to the southeast underneath the Cove pit in the relatively untested favorable rocks which are host to the Helen Zone.”
Nevada is one of the world’s most favourable jurisdictions for mine development and the Cove Project offers substantial upside in the existing resource areas in addition to opportunities for the discovery of new high-grade gold deposits within the district. The Cove deposit was mined (primarily by open pit) between 1988 and 2001, a period of comparatively low metal prices, producing approximately 2.3 million ounces of Gold, and more than 100 million ounces of silver. Table 1 provides a summary of highlight assay results received from the ongoing program. The Cove Project is held under lease from Newmont McCoy Cove Limited, a subsidiary of Newmont Mining Corporation. Newmont has the option to become the manager and 51% joint venture partner up until Premier submits a positive feasibility study for a deposit containing a minimum of 500,000 ounces of gold.
New drill holes AX-11 and AX-12 confirm Premier’s model that the Helen Zone is a stratiform, Carlin-style deposit, that occurs in favourable limestone and dolomite units and remains wide open along the favourable anticline structure that is host to the primary mineralized zones at Cove. AX-11 represents a 122 metre (300 feet) northwesterly step out that intersected both the Upper and Lower Helen Zone horizons. AX-12 represents a 62.5 metres (200 feet) step out from AX-9 to the southeast towards the historic Cove pit and intersected multiple gold zones suggesting major expansion potential. AX-8A was a twinned core hole of RC hole AX-8 which was drilled to properly test mineralization utilizing core rather than reverse circulation, successfully intersecting multiple gold zones in the heart of the deposit. AX-8A offset the original RC hole between 30 to 40 feet to the south of the original RC hole.
Premier’s management team believes that the Cove Project represents one of the most under-explored projects in Nevada. It is located in the Eureka-Battle Mountain Trend that is host to numerous multi-million ounce producing and past-producing mines. The property is located in close proximity to excellent infrastructure (including paved roads & power) and some work has progressed such that permitting for underground access can be advanced.
Table 1 - Select assay results for Helen Zone drilling
gravimetric assays used when available - true widths estimated at approximately 85% - 95% of core intercept - * denotes previously unreleased drill hole
Drilling on hole AX-13 continues to step out approximately 63 metres (200 feet) from AX-12 along strike to the southeast towards the historic Cove open pit. Strong alteration and mineralization has been noted in both the Upper and Lower horizons in AX-13 suggesting further expansion potential. Premier is also completing permitting so that exploration can expand beyond the Helen Zone and evaluate the entire property, including numerous untested and favourable structural intersections along strike from the Cove pit and the Helen Zone.
For the remainder of the year drilling will continue to test potential mineralization hosted deeper in the Cove anticline axial plane along an untested 625 metres (2,000 feet) corridor from the Helen Zone to the northwest margin of the Cove open pit. High-grade gold mineralization is known to occur in the Helen Zone hosted in Home Station dolomite (Upper Helen) and Favret limestone (Lower Helen). This proposed drill program is designed to core test this favorable horizon approximately 375 to 625 metres (1,200 to 2,000 feet) below the surface and below most of the historic limit of drilling. This 625 metres (2,000 feet) corridor has never received adequate drilling that focuses on these favorable horizons along the axial trace of the Cove Anticline.
Premier holds several projects that are the subject of exploration programs in 2012. Recently, the haulage drift in Red Lake has crossed onto the Rahill-Bonanza Project (PG 49% and Red Lake Gold Mines 51%) that is located in close proximity to Goldcorp’s Red Lake Gold Mines infrastructure. A new gold horizon is being defined on the East Bay Project (PG 35% and 50% - JV with RLGM) that is located on the same structural trend along strike from Rubicon Mineral’s F2 Zone deposit on its Phoenix Gold Project. Several drills are active on the 100%-owned Trans-Canada Project, which hosts a total in excess of 4.0 million ounces of gold mineral resources in multiple deposits . A revised resource estimate is anticipated from four separate deposits in the near future.
The acquisition of Cove and the South Carlin Projects represent two of several opportunities Premier is evaluating in the United States having near-term development potential and long-term exploration upside. Premier views the US as a geologically and politically attractive vehicle for future growth.
Stephen McGibbon, P. Geo., is the Qualified Person for the information contained in this press release and is a Qualified Person within the meaning of National Instrument 43-101. Assay results for RC drill samples were sent to American Assay Laboratories located in Elko, Nevada prep facility and analysis was performed at their Sparks, Nevada analytical facility utilizing 30 gram fire assay with an AA finish. Core samples were analyzed by Inspectorate laboratory facility located in Sparks, Nevada and analysis was done using 30 gram fire assay with AA finish and ICP-MS 30 element scan from 4-acid digestion.
Premier Gold Mines Limited is one of North America’s leading exploration companies with a high-quality pipeline of projects focused in proven, safe and accessible mining jurisdictions in Canada and the United States. The Company’s portfolio includes significant assets in world class gold mining districts such as Red Lake, Musselwhite and Geraldton in Ontario and the Battle Mountain and Carlin Trends in Nevada.