VANCOUVER, April 16 /CNW/ - Bear Creek Mining (TSX Venture: BCM) ("Bear Creek" or the "Company") is pleased to announce the acquisition of 100% interests in three new gold/silver exploration targets located in southern Peru. In addition to its commitments towards advancing the Corani and Santa Ana deposits which together contain over 400 million ounces of silver in measured and indicated resources plus base metals credits, the Company continues to maintain aggressive generative exploration programs which have led to the discovery and acquisition of these prospects. The newly acquired prospects are described as follows:
The Umayo gold prospect (400 hectares), located 24 kilometers southeast of the city of Puno in southern Peru, represents an epithermal gold system contained within a volcanic setting associated with a large alteration area measuring 500 by 500 meters. Nineteen (19) preliminary rock chip samples returned values ranging from 35 to 6070 ppb gold. Highly anomalous arsenic values up to 1165 ppm indicate the presence of a shallow epithermal gold deposit. Future work will focus on detailed geologic mapping, trenching, and additional rock chip sampling.
The Tassa prospect (1200 hectares) is located 160 kilometers south east of the city of Arequipa. Tassa is an untested epithermal silver system containing large tonnage-potential, near-surface disseminated silver (plus gold) in volcanics. The geologic setting resembles the Company's Santa Ana silver deposit, but with higher gold, arsenic, mercury and antimony values contained within even more permeable volcanoclastic host rock making Tassa a bulk-tonnage, outcropping, disseminated silver (gold) epithermal-type target. The volcanoclastics are regionally surrounded by manganese-carbonate veins in the lower sections accompanied by an increase in copper mineralization in the southern part of the claim block suggesting that zoning into a porphyry copper-gold system may be present. Eighty-seven rock chip samples returned an average of 61 ppm silver. In addition, three trenches totaling 466 meters in length have been completed with 2 meter samples returning an average of 65.4ppm silver exposed over an area 800 meters by 250 meters by 200 meters high and open laterally. Six of the rock chip samples returned anomalous gold values from 0.10 to 0.48 g/t. The Bear Creek claims are surrounded by recently-staked competitor's mineral rights. To view location map for both the Umayo and the Tassa projects please refer to http://www.bearcreekmining.com/i/pdf/2009-04-16_NRM.pdf
A third prospect, located north of the city of Moquegua, southern Peru, is an epithermal low-sulfidation gold system where the Company is further consolidating its land position. Banded quartz veins similar to the El Penon gold deposit, Chile are common in the district. Gold anomalies in the volcanic host rock (36 rock chip samples) range from 7 to 2030 ppb Au. Anomalous arsenic obtained from outcrops within the district strongly indicates the presence of additional, hidden veins. Brecciated and strongly fractured volcanics measuring 50 meters in width surrounding the veins indicate potential for a disseminated gold target. Outcrops are sparse within the potentially mineralized area; therefore, this target has remained unrecognized and untested. Future plans include 2-3 trenches (50 meters length minimum) in the brecciated volcanics to evaluate bulk target potential in addition to the higher-grade gold vein targets.
Andrew Swarthout, President and CEO, stated "These acquisitions represent our continued commitment towards generative exploration which has been the foundation for Bear Creek's success in discovering both the Corani and Santa Ana deposits. We anticipate that at least one of these acquisitions will be brought to the drill stage during 2009. The current market down-turn is continuing to free up opportunities and Bear Creek's exploration teams remain vigilant for opportunities to acquire additional high-quality precious metals prospects."
Drilling on the La Yegua copper-molybdenum (gold) prospect is expected to again commence under the management of Bear Creek's joint venture partner, Chapleau upon obtaining community agreements and exploration permits. Chapleau has reported significant copper and molybdenum mineralization from its stage I drilling programs.
Drilling on the Antash porphyry copper target performed by the Company's joint venture partner was completed and results did not indicate that further work was warranted. Bear Creek maintains a 100% interest in 1,000 hectares of mining claims in the Antash district which will continue to be evaluated as appropriate. Initial drilling on the Company's Piedra Sagrada gold prospect did not indicate the presence of a gold deposit of sufficient quality to continue work and the Company terminated its option agreements.
The TSX Venture Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
All of Bear Creek's exploration programs and pertinent disclosure of a technical or scientific nature are prepared by or prepared under the direct supervision of Marc Leduc, P. Eng., Senior Vice President of Engineering and Development and the President and CEO, Andrew Swarthout, P.Geo., who serve as the Qualified Persons under the definitions of NI 43-101. All diamond drilling has been performed using HQ diameter core with recoveries averaging greater than 95%. Core is logged and split on site under the supervision of Bear Creek geologists. Sampling is done on two-meter intervals and samples are transported by Company staff to Juliaca or Cusco, Peru for direct shipping to ALS Chemex, Laboratories in Lima, Peru. ALS Chemex is an ISO 9001:2000-registered laboratory and is preparing for ISO 17025 certification. Silver, lead, and zinc assays utilize a multi-acid digestion with atomic absorption ("ore-grade assay method"). The QC/QA program includes the insertion every 20th sample of known standards prepared by SGS Laboratories, Lima. A section in Bear Creek's website is dedicated to sampling, assay and quality control procedures.
Certain disclosure in this release, including management's assessment of Bear Creek's plans and projects, constitutes forward-looking statements that are subject to numerous risks, uncertainties and other factors relating to Bear Creek's operation as a mineral exploration company that may cause future results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements. These risks, uncertainties and other factors are disclosed in Bear Creek's continuous disclosure filings with Canadian securities regulators including its most recent annual information form, available on www.sedar.com. Bear Creek expressly disclaims any intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.