High River Gold Mines Ltd.
TSX : HRG

High River Gold Mines Ltd.

May 23, 2006 11:37 ET

High River Gold Exceeds Initial Resource Target at the Bissa Project, Burkina Faso

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - May 23, 2006) - High River Gold Mines Ltd. ("High River", the "Company") (TSX:HRG) is pleased to announce the results of the independent resource estimate based on the recent 31,000 metre drilling programme on the Bissa Project exploration permits. The gold resource estimate was classified according to NI 43-101 and CIMM definition standards for mineral resources and reserves by Jean-Francois Couture of SRK Consulting (Canada) Inc. ("SRK").

The database for the May 23, 2006 resource estimate is composed of 341 surface holes/trenches consisting of 81 diamond drill holes (DDH), 224 reverse circulation holes (RC) and 36 trenches. The database used to estimate the mineral resources was audited by SRK and found to be appropriate for resource estimation. However, the reader is cautioned that mineral resources are not mineral reserves, and it is not the intent to demonstrate that the mineral resource has economic viability. This resource estimate is preliminary and, ultimately, any defined mineral reserves will be sensitive to future engineering studies and metallurgical testing.



Using a cut-off grade of 0.5 grams of gold per tonne (g/t), the
mineral resource estimate (excluding the Bissa Hill deposit) (Tables
1 and 3) consists of:

515,000 ounces of gold the "indicated category" and
669,500 ounces of gold in the "inferred category"

Including the Bissa Hill deposit (Table 2), previously estimated by
SRK in September 2004 using a 0.5 g/t cut-off, the mineral resource
increases to:

81,980 ounces of gold in the "measured category" and
580,270 ounces of gold in the "indicated category" and
679,470 ounces of gold in the "inferred category".


SRK modeled 28 distinct gold zones using a geological interpretation provided by High River and a 0.2 g/t gold cut-off. Weathering profiles were modeled using lithology information and specific gravity data collected by High River. Gold assays were composited to 2-metre lengths and flagged for geostatistical analysis and variography. Geostatistics, variography and capping levels were analyzed on the aggregate composite gold assays for all 28 zones for each of the 4 weathering profiles because there are insufficient samples available for each zone. Gold grades were interpolated into a block model using an inverse distance squared function using search parameters determined from variography and geostatistical analysis. The details will be documented in a technical report to be filed on SEDAR shortly.

Sensitivities

a) Grade Capping

High River's recent drilling programme outlined a large number of gold mineralized zones. Grade in the different zones varies from relatively low grade to extremely high grade. Unfortunately, because there was insufficient data available to establish individual caps for the high grade zones, capping was applied to high composite values based on statistical analysis of the entire resource, all 28 zones.



Weathering Profile Values

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Material Average Cap Values Cap Percentile Number of Capped
SG (g/t) Composite Values
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Laterite 2.10 3 99.1 21
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Saprolite 1.88 8.5 97.8 54
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Transition 2.21 8.5 97.8 75
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Fresh Rock 2.72 5 96.5 20
---------------------------------------------------------------------


To demonstrate the sensitivity of capping based on the entire resource, the uncapped resource estimate produced 16% more gold. To address this issue, the 2006 drilling programme will include additional drilling within the high grade zones to facilitate individual capping.

b) Higher Cut-Off Grade (Table 4)

To demonstrate the sensitivity to a higher cut-off grade, the mineral resource estimate for the 28 zones (excluding the Bissa Hill Deposit) using a 1 g/t cut-off reduces the "indicated resource" by 109,000 ounces or 21% while increasing the grade by 41%, and reduces the "inferred resource" by 180,500 ounces or 27% while increasing the grade by 57%.

The resource estimation was completed by SRK under the direction of Jean-Francois Couture, Ph. D, P. Geo, a Qualified Person and independent of the issuer as defined in Section 1.4 of National Instrument 43-101.

High River is very pleased with the results of the drilling to date on the new/extended zones along the Bissa Trend. This initial estimate is preliminary as, in many cases, the numerous auriferous zones are still open along strike and down dip and down plunge. In addition, we have only tested about a five kilometre strike length along the Bissa Trend which can be traced for about 30 kilometres. High River is also currently completing base line exploration on a number of high priority areas located by earlier exploration during the late 1990s by the Randgold Resources Ltd. - led joint venture.

An aggressive drilling programme (approximately US $2 million per quarter) will commence by mid-year to define additional resources along strike on the Sabce deformation zone and in the other priority areas. In addition, further drilling is planned for select areas including the potential high grade areas covered by the recent programme to extend the zones, to provide better definition and to provide sufficient data to allow capping levels to be established separately for each high grade gold zone.

The results to date confirm the excellent potential of the Bissa Gold Project to develop into a new significant stand alone mine. Developing a second mine in Burkina Faso is consistent with High River's strategy to expand its operations in Burkina Faso and throughout West Africa.

About High River

High River is currently constructing two open pit gold mines, the Taparko-Bouroum Project in Burkina Faso and the Berezitovy Project in Russia. Upon successful commissioning of these two development projects, together with gold production from High River's 85%-owned Russian subsidiary, OJSC Buryatzoloto, High River's annualized gold production rate is expected to exceed 350,000 ounces by mid-year 2007, establishing the Company as a mid-tier gold producer.

FORWARD LOOKING STATEMENTS

This press release contains forward-looking statements based on current expectations. These forward-looking statements entail various risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those reflected. Risk and uncertainties about the Company's business are more fully discussed in the Management's Discussion and Analysis published in the Company's Annual Report and in the Annual Information Form.



Table 1: Grade Cut-Off: 0.5 g/t

---------------------------------------------------------------
Resource Classification Bissa Trend Deposits
Indicated Resources
---------------------------------------------------------------
Laterite Saprolite
--------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
--------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 77,000 0.81 2,000 380,000 1.24 15,100
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 162,000 1.08 5,600 156,000 2.69 13,500
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 179,000 0.83 4,800 314,000 1.44 14,600
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 28,000 0.64 600 115,000 1.07 3,900
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 49,000 0.83 1,300 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 495,000 0.90 14,300 964,000 1.52 47,100
---------------------------------------------------------------


---------------------------------------------------------------
Transition Rock
---------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
---------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 4,131,000 1.22 161,600 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 4,157,000 1.90 254,500 123,000 2.05 8,100
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 637,000 1.30 26,700 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 69,000 0.74 1,700 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 57,000 0.61 1,100 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 9,052,000 1.53 445,600 123,000 2.05 8,100
---------------------------------------------------------------


-------------------------------------------
Total
-------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au
------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz)
------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 4,588,000 1.21 178,800
-------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 4,597,000 1.91 281,700
-------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 1,130,000 1.27 46,000
-------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 211,000 0.91 6,200
-------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 106,000 0.71 2,400
-------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 10,633,000 1.51 515,000
-------------------------------------------



Inferred Resources
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Laterite Saprolite
-------------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
-------------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 30,000 0.72 700 613,000 1.31 25,800
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 82,000 0.82 2,200 359,000 2.13 24,600
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 526,000 0.76 12,900 2,214,000 1.45 103,200
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 106,000 0.91 3,100 1,262,000 1.40 56,700
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 112,000 0.65 2,300 227,000 2.19 16,000
-------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 855,000 0.77 21,200 4,676,000 1.51 226,400
-------------------------------------------------------------------


------------------------------------------------------------------
Transition Rock
-----------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
-----------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 3,016,000 1.09 105,900 318,000 1.50 15,400
------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 1,292,000 0.86 35,900 1,280,000 1.61 66,300
------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 2,233,000 1.41 101,000 1,033,000 1.25 41,400
------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 850,000 1.11 30,300 225,000 0.86 6,200
------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 487,000 1.21 18,900 23,000 0.68 500
------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 7,878,000 1.15 292,100 2,879,000 1.40 129,800
------------------------------------------------------------------


-----------------------------------------------
Total
----------------------------
Deposit Cut
-Off Tonnes Au Au
----------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz)
-----------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 0.5 3,978,000 1.16 147,900
-----------------------------------------------
Bissa South-
West 0.5 3,014,000 1.33 129,000
-----------------------------------------------
Zone 51 0.5 6,005,000 1.34 258,600
-----------------------------------------------
Zone 52 0.5 2,442,000 1.23 96,200
-----------------------------------------------
Zone 53 0.5 848,000 1.38 37,700
-----------------------------------------------
Total 0.5 16,288,000 1.28 669,500
-----------------------------------------------



Table 2: Mineral Resource Statement(i), Bissa Hill Gold Deposit, SRK
Consulting, September 28, 2004.

------------------------------------------------------
Tonnage Gold Grade Contained Gold
Class (Tonne) (G/t) (Ounces)
Measured 753,000 3.38 81.980
Indicated 620,000 3.27 65,270
Inferred 106,000 2.89 9,970
------------------------------------------------------
(i) reported at a cut-off grade of 0.5 gpt.gold



Click on this link for Table 3;
Bissa Project Gold Deposits
Location of Various Gold Zones
(using a 0.5 g/t gold cut-off)
http://www.ccnmatthews.com/docs/hrg0523.jpg



Table 4: Grade Cut-Off: 1.0 g/t

---------------------------------------------------------------
Resource Classification Bissa Trend Deposits
Indicated Resources
----------------------------------------------------------------
Laterite Saprolite
-------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
-------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 19,000 1.24 1,000 166,000 1.96 10,000
----------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 77,000 1.53 4,000 134,000 3.01 13,000
----------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 30,000 1.50 1,000 164,000 2.11 11,000
----------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 0 0.00 0 42,000 1.62 2,000
----------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 15,000 1.10 1,000 0 0.00 0
----------------------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 141,000 1.44 7,000 505,000 2.26 37,000
----------------------------------------------------------------


--------------------------------------------------------------------
Transition Rock
-----------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
-----------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 1,814,000 1.85 108,000 0 0.00 0
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 2,961,000 2.38 226,000 109,000 2.20 8,000
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 397,000 1.64 21,000 0 0.00 0
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 7,000 1.11 0 0 0.00 0
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 0 1.51 0 0 0.00 0
--------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 5,179,000 2.14 356,000 109,000 2.20 8,000
--------------------------------------------------------------------


-------------------------------------------------
Total
----------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au
----------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz)
-------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 1,999,000 1.86 119,000
-------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 3,280,000 2.38 251,000
-------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 591,000 1.77 34,000
-------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 49,000 1.55 2,000
-------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 16,000 1.11 1,000
-------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 5,935,000 2.13 406,000
-------------------------------------------------



Inferred Resources
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Laterite Saprolite
----------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
----------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 6,000 1.16 0 284,000 2.00 18,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 47,000 1.50 2,000 241,000 3.19 25,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 67,000 1.29 3,000 1,172,000 2.10 79,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 31,000 1.66 2,000 672,000 1.99 43,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 2,000 1.04 0 149,000 2.98 14,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 153,000 1.42 7,000 2,518,000 2.22 179,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------


---------------------------------------------------------------------
Transition Rock
----------------------------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au Tonnes Au Au
----------------------------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz) (g/t) (oz)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 1,182,000 1.69 64,000 191,000 2.05 13,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 463,000 1.85 28,000 839,000 2.18 59,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 1,156,000 2.08 77,000 440,000 1.99 28,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 352,000 1.70 19,000 65,000 1.17 2,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 199,000 1.90 12,000 0 0.00 0
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 3,353,000 1.86 200,000 1,535,000 2.06 102,000
---------------------------------------------------------------------


--------------------------------------------------
Total
---------------------------
Deposit Cut-
Off Tonnes Au Au
---------------------------
(g/t) (g/t) (oz)
--------------------------------------------------
Bissa South
Extension 1.0 1,664,000 1.78 95,000
--------------------------------------------------
Bissa South-West 1.0 1,590,000 2.22 113,000
--------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 1.0 2,835,000 2.05 187,000
--------------------------------------------------
Zone 52 1.0 1,120,000 1.85 66,000
--------------------------------------------------
Zone 53 1.0 350,000 2.36 27,000
--------------------------------------------------
Total 1.0 7,559,000 2.01 489,000
--------------------------------------------------


Contact Information

  • High River Gold Mines Ltd.
    Don Whalen
    Executive Chairman
    (416) 947-1440
    (416) 360-0010 (FAX)
    or
    High River Gold Mines Ltd.
    David Mosher
    President & CEO
    (416) 947-1440
    (416) 360-0010 (FAX)
    info@hrg.ca
    www.hrg.ca