High River Gold Mines Ltd.
TSX : HRG

High River Gold Mines Ltd.

January 10, 2006 18:25 ET

High River Gold Encounters Additional Positive Intercepts From Its Bissa Gold Project In Burkina Faso

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(CCNMatthews - Jan. 10, 2006) - High River Gold Mines Ltd. ("High River" or the "Company")(TSX:HRG) is pleased to report assay results from an additional 14 drill holes and 14 trenches at Bissa Southwest, the Bissa Hill deposit south extension and the Bissa-Gonglou corridor of the Company's Bissa Project in Burkina Faso. The results reported today, from its nearly completed 33,500 metres drilling programme, confirm the potential for outlining a significant gold resource sufficient to support a mining operation.



Highlights include:

- High-grade gold mineralization intersected at the Bissa Hill
deposit south extension with three significant zones in one
hole:

39.4 g/t over 10 m
5.5 g/t over 11.5 m
12.2 g/t over 27.1 m

- Mineralized Zones 2 and 3 of Bissa Southwest extended down-dip and
down-plunge:

10.6 g/t over 7 m in Zone 2
11.7 g/t over 5.4 m in Zone 2
5.9 g/t over 10.1 m in Zone 2
16.3 g/t over 8 m in Zone 3

- Gold mineralization extended to near surface at Zone 51 of the
Bissa-Gonglou corridor with significant trenching results of:

1.5 g/t over 14.1 m
2.1 g/t over 10.8 m
5.0 g/t over 9.6 m


Bissa Hill Deposit South Extension

High River completed two additional core holes (337 m) and two trenches (155.8 m) on the southwestern zone of the Bissa Hill deposit south extension. The known high-grade zone was further extended down-dip with core hole ZK05-054, drilled behind RC ZBR-189 (20 m grading 17.0 g/t gold from 82 m) on section 8740E, which returned three significant gold intersections: 39.4 g/t over 10 m from 53 m, 5.5 g/t over 11.5 m from 76 m, and 12.2 g/t over 27.1 m from 93.1 m. The three intersections include very high gold grade intervals ranging from 40.9 g/t to 276.5 g/t as shown in the highlights table. The results also suggest the presence of two new potentially significant gold zones to the north of the target zone. Follow-up diamond drilling on these zones is planned for January.

The Bissa Hill deposit south extension is the southwest continuation of the Bissa Hill deposit, which currently contains a measured and indicated resource of approximately 150,000 ounces of gold (81,980 oz in the measured category and 65,270 oz in the indicated category); the gold mineralization in the south extension zone is hosted in a mafic schist unit, which forms the footwall of the Bissa Hill deposit. Since mid-September, High River completed 12 trenches (877 m), 19 RC holes (2,220 m) and two core holes (337 m) on this zone that has a strike length of approximately 1.5 km. Refer to the Company's announcements on November 23, 2005 and December 1, 2005 for more details.



Bissa Hill Deposit South Extension

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Hole No. From (m) To (m) Interval (m) Gold (g/t)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-054 53.0 63.0 10.0 39.38
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 58.0 59.0 1.0 15.10
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 59.0 59.9 0.9 143.27
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 59.9 60.5 0.6 80.93
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 60.5 61.2 0.7 276.50
-----------------------------------------------------
76.0 87.5 11.5 5.48
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 83.0 84.0 1.0 19.67
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 84.0 84.6 0.6 40.90
-----------------------------------------------------
93.1 120.2 27.1 12.23
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 94.3 95.2 0.9 17.21
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 95.2 96.0 0.8 11.20
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 96.0 97.4 1.4 27.80
-----------------------------------------------------
Including 99.0 100.5 1.5 163.12
---------------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-055 No significant results
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Trench 8657E No significant results
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Trench 8677E No significant results
---------------------------------------------------------------------

Note: Assays reported are uncut. All values above 10 g/t in the
composite are reported in the table. True width is estimated to be
60% of the drilled length.


Bissa Southwest

Assay results from a further nine core holes (1,618 m) and two trenches (145 m) returned encouraging intersections over significant widths at Bissa Southwest, located 700 metres southwest of the Bissa Hill deposit.

At Zone 2, core hole ZK05-050, testing the down-dip extension of a previously reported intersection of 12 m grading 6.0 g/t (DDH ZK05-036) on section 9180E, returned 8.4 g/t over 3.7 m from 104 m and 11.7 g/t over 5.4 m from 111.9 m. Core holes ZK05-048 and 049 on section 9220N drilled down-dip from the previously reported intercept of 2.5 g/t over 11.8 m (DDH ZK05-041) returned 5.9 g/t over 10.1 m from 124.9 m and 10.6 g/t over 7 m from 136 m, respectively. Core hole ZK05-057 drilled down-dip from DDH ZK05-035 returned 3.6 g/t over 8.2 m from 150 m, confirming continuity of the mineralized zone.

At Zone 3 on section 9260N, core hole ZK05-052 returned 1.9 g/t over 7.9 m from 114.1m and core hole ZK05-053 cut 16.3 g/t over 8 m from 81 m, 2.9 g/t over 7.2 m from 102.8 m and 2.8 g/t over 7 m from 113 m. Core hole ZK05-051 drilled on new fence 9306E cut a series of significant gold intersections with 9.33 g/t over 2 m from 99 m, 5.1 g/t over 4.3 m from 105.9 m, and a 47 m interval grading 1.3 g/t from 144 m along the hole. Follow up drilling and trenching will continue in January.

At Zone 4, results from DDH ZK05-061, drilled down-dip from a previous intercept of 51 m grading 1.0 g/t (RC ZBR-139) on section 9220N, confirmed continuity of the gold mineralization with an interval of 64 m grading 0.9 g/t from 22 m, and additional gold intersections of 1.1 g/t over 11 m from 99 m and 2.0 g/t over 13.6 m from 172 m. Trench TR-9057E(N) cut a 25 metre zone averaging approximately 1 g/t. Thus far, drilling results from Bissa Southwest Zone 4 have given less than 1 g/t values over wide intervals, which could potentially provide feed for a low cost heap leach operation.



Bissa Southwest Highlights

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Hole No. From (m) To (m) Interval (m) Gold (g/t)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 2 DDH ZK05-048 109.0 112.0 3.0 3.68
------------------------------------------------------------
124.9 135.0 10.1 5.89
--------------------------------------------
Including 126.0 126.4 0.4 28.60
--------------------------------------------
Including 127.0 128.0 1.0 10.00
--------------------------------------------
Including 129.15 130.2 1.05 22.30
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-049 136.0 143.0 7.0 10.64
--------------------------------------------
Including 138.0 139.2 1.2 30.40
--------------------------------------------
Including 141.0 142.0 1.0 10.50
--------------------------------------------
Including 142.0 142.7 0.7 14.20
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-050 104.0 107.7 3.7 8.38
--------------------------------------------
Including 104.45 105.0 0.55 18.80
--------------------------------------------
Including 106.0 106.4 0.4 13.50
--------------------------------------------
Including 107.0 107.7 0.7 19.60
--------------------------------------------
111.9 117.3 5.4 11.71
--------------------------------------------
Including 111.9 113.0 1.1 26.60
--------------------------------------------
Including 113.0 114.1 1.1 17.23
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-056 No significant
results
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-057 150.0 158.2 8.2 3.56
--------------------------------------------
Including 153.0 154.0 1.0 14.52
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 3 DDH ZK05-051 99.0 101.0 2.0 9.33
--------------------------------------------
Including 99.0 100.0 1.0 18.05
--------------------------------------------
105.9 110.2 4.3 5.15
--------------------------------------------
Including 106.5 107.35 0.85 11.20
--------------------------------------------
Including 109.7 110.2 0.5 20.60
--------------------------------------------
144.0 191.0 47.0 1.30
--------------------------------------------
Including 144.0 152.0 8.0 1.76
--------------------------------------------
Including 156.0 166.0 10.0 1.64
--------------------------------------------
Including 171.0 191.0 20.0 1.13
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-052 114.1 122.0 7.9 1.87
------------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-053 81.0 89.0 8.0 16.33
--------------------------------------------
Including 82.0 83.0 1.0 12.47
--------------------------------------------
Including 83.0 84.0 1.0 60.80
--------------------------------------------
Including 84.0 85.0 1.0 30.09
--------------------------------------------
Including 88.0 89.0 1.0 22.90
--------------------------------------------
102.8 110.0 7.2 2.92
--------------------------------------------
113.0 120.0 7.0 2.84
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 4 DDH ZK05-061 22.0 86.0 64.0 0.94
--------------------------------------------
Including 22.0 41.0 19.0 0.85
--------------------------------------------
Including 44.0 69.0 25.0 1.01
--------------------------------------------
Including 72.5 86.0 13.5 1.25
--------------------------------------------
99.0 110.0 11.0 1.06
--------------------------------------------
172.0 185.55 13.55 1.96
------------------------------------------------------------
Trench 9057E(N) 52.0 61.0 9.0 1.44
--------------------------------------------
64.0 77.0 13.0 0.91
------------------------------------------------------------
Trench 9217E(N) No significant
results
---------------------------------------------------------------------

Note: Assays reported are uncut. All values above 10 g/t in the
composite are reported in the table. True width is estimated to be
90-100% of the drilled length.


To date, High River has completed 20 core holes (3,489 m), 20 RC holes (2,338 m) and five trenches (285 m) at Bissa Southwest. High River has defined five subparallel gold zones, 100 to 150 metres apart, trending northeasterly and dipping 30 to 40 degrees to the northwest. Geological interpretation of the data indicates that gold mineralization is localized at the hinge zones of parasitic folds (Zones 0 to 4) forming a moderately northeasterly plunging syncline. All five subparallel zones remain open down-plunge to the northeast and have been drilled to depths ranging from 34 metres at Zone 0 to depths of 140 metres at Zone 2. Gold mineralization occurs primarily in altered, pyrite-bearing argillites and occasionally siltstones, and in the underlying massive sandstones with zones of grey cryptocrystalline quartz veining and strong silicification. Oxidation occurs to depths between 50 and 75 metres. Drilling and trenching will continue in January on the best zones.

Bissa-Gonglou Corridor

High River received assays from an additional three core holes (418 m) and eight trenches (1,025 m) on Zone 51 of the Bissa-Gonglou corridor, located immediately southwest of Bissa Southwest and the Bissa Hill deposit south extension.

Zone 51 contains a series of subparallel gold zones hosted by mafic schists. Gold occurs with quartz veins and associated alteration (silica, iron carbonate and pyrite with enveloping sericitization) in strong deformation zones. The dips of the gold zones are subvertical to north and locally south.

Previously announced results on the western portion of Zone 51, located 330 metres east of the Gonglou artisanal mining site, had indicated the presence of at least two, and possibly four, subparallel zones extending over a strike length of 220 metres. One of two core holes drilled successfully extended the gold mineralization down-dip on section 6300E. Core hole ZK05-059 returned 1.4 g/t over 7 m from 61 m and 15.2 g/t over 1.45 m from 84.6 m, confirming continuity at depth.

Other significant results are from the trenches excavated on the eastern portion of Zone 51: TR-7097E intersected 1.82 g/t over 6.6 m and 1.47 g/t over 14.1 m; TR-7177E(N) encountered 2.1 g/t over 10.8 m; TR-7337E intersected 5.0 g/t over 9.6 m and 1.82 g/t over 6.4 m; and TR-7497E cut 3.2 g/t over 8.9 m and 2.4 g/t over 5.6 m.

To date, High River has completed 10 core holes (1,434 m), 66 RC holes (7,742 m) and 11 trenches (1,163 m) at Zone 51.



Bissa-Gonglou Corridor Highlights

---------------------------------------------------------------------
Hole No. From (m) To (m) Interval (m) Gold (g/t)
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 (west) DDH ZK05-059 61.0 68.0 7.0 1.44
----------------------------------------
84.55 86.0 1.45 15.23
----------------------------------------
Including 84.55 85.0 0.45 26.40
----------------------------------------
Including 85.0 86.0 1.0 10.20
--------------------------------------------------------
DDH ZK05-060 No
significant
results
---------------------------------------------------------------------
Zone 51 (east) DDH ZK05-058 No
significant
results
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7097E 18.4 25.0 6.6 1.82
----------------------------------------
116.0 130.1 14.1 1.47
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7177E(S) 28.6 36.0 7.4 1.76
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7177E(N) 31.0 41.8 10.8 2.12
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7257E No
significant
results
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7337E 11.7 21.3 9.6 4.97
----------------------------------------
99.1 105.5 6.4 1.82
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7417E 0.2 5.1 4.9 2.90
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7497E 27.0 35.9 8.9 3.18
----------------------------------------
Including 28.0 29.0 1.0 12.36
----------------------------------------
40.8 46.4 5.6 2.35
----------------------------------------
45.6 46.4 0.8 11.07
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 7577E No
significant
results
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 8137E No
significant
results
--------------------------------------------------------
Trench 8217E 21.0 24.0 3.0 3.51
----------------------------------------
62.6 64.6 2.0 9.82
----------------------------------------
Including 62.6 63.7 1.1 12.20
---------------------------------------------------------------------

Note: Assays reported are uncut. All values above 10 g/t in the
composite are reported in the table. True width is estimated to be
50-70% of the drilled length for Zone 51.


Bouly and Liliga Targets

High River is advancing preliminary work on two of the five high priority areas, defined in the compilation work completed in early November 2005, with a drilling programme planned to start in the first quarter of 2006. At Bouly and Liliga, both located within 10 km of the Bissa Project, geological mapping at 1:5,000 is near completion, soil sampling on a 100 m by 100 m grid and rock chip sampling have been completed. Assays are pending. Both targets were previously investigated by the Sanmatenga Joint Venture, which was carried out by Randgold Resources Ltd. from 1993 to 2001 (refer to press release November 10, 2005 for more details).

Complete tables of results, surface and longitudinal plans and cross-sections for the Bissa Project are posted on the Company's website www.hrg.ca/Projects/Exploration/Bissa Group Permits or on the home page under Qwik Access.

In mid-September, High River started an exploration programme consisting of 10,500 metres core (DDH), 17,000 metres reverse circulation (RC), and 6,000 metres rotary air blast (RAB) drilling, and 2,500 metres of trenching. Approximately 4,300 m of the core drilling programme remains to be carried out. After completion of the drilling campaign, the Company will commission an independent resource estimate for the project, which is expected to be completed by the end of the first quarter of 2006. By combining the Bissa Hill deposit and its southern extension, Bissa Southwest and part of the Bissa-Gonglou corridor, High River expects to achieve its initial goal of defining a one million ounce gold resource amenable to open pit mining. All zones lie within a 5.5 kilometre strike length on the Sabce shear zone, which has been traced for over 30 kilometres. Five other promising gold target areas that are within 10 to 15 kilometres of the Bissa project have yet to be tested by High River, and offer the potential to host a similar size resource.

Quality Control Programme

The Quality Control Protocol ("QC") in place has been designed to meet or exceed the requirements of NI 43-101 of the Canadian Securities Administrators. This QC programme includes the use of certified standard reference samples, coarse field blank material and duplicate assaying. Driffield Cameron, Vice President Exploration, is the Qualified Person for High River Gold Mines Ltd supervising the Bissa Project. Analytical work is carried out at the independent Abilab Laboratories Ltd. in Bamako, Mali. A 0.5 g/t cut-off grade was used for the calculation of composite intervals. The maximum distance of dilution of assay results of less than the cut-off grade included within a composite interval is 2.5 metres.

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. Annual gold production from Taparko-Bouroum is planned at 100,000 ounces in year one increasing to over 140,000 ounces in the third year of operation, with annual production from Berezitovy of 100,000 ounces. Upon successful commissioning of these two development projects, together with gold production from High River's 84%-owned Russian subsidiary, OJSC Buryatzoloto, High River's attributable annual gold production is expected to exceed 300,000 ounces by 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.

Contact Information

  • High River Gold Mines Ltd.
    Don Whalen
    Executive Chairman
    (416) 947-1440
    or
    High River Gold Mines Ltd.
    Laurie Gaborit
    VP Investor Relations
    (416) 947-1440
    (416) 360-0010 (FAX)
    info@hrg.ca
    www.hrg.ca