Intact Hanging Wall Veins in Upper Levels Increase Potential for Early Resource Base at Wits Basin's
Wits Basin Precious Minerals Inc. (OTC BB: WITM.OB, News) is pleased to announce that geologic mapping and sampling of the upper levels of the Bates-Hunter Gold Mine in Central City, Colorado is complete.
[ClickPress, Tue Oct 18 2005] Oct. 18, 2005--Wits Basin Precious Minerals Inc. (OTC BB: WITM.OB, News) is pleased to announce that geologic mapping and sampling of the upper levels of the Bates-Hunter Gold Mine in Central City, Colorado is complete. A number of two to four inch thick heavily mineralized veins were found to exist within five to six feet into the hanging wall of the Bates Vein. Seventeen rock samples have been sent to an independent registered assay lab for fire assay and geochemical testing. Analytical results are expected within the next few weeks. Preliminary, in-house assays are very encouraging. Compilation of existing data indicates the potential for three parallel veins within 200 feet northwest and southwest of the Bates vein.
Additional level samples and continued rehabilitation
While rehabilitation of the mine continues, additional mapping, sampling and assaying is being carried out on the veins, muck, hanging wall and foot wall material. This work might establish an early source of resource ounces. This process will continue through each of the seven levels. The work being performed by Glenn O'Gorman (P. Eng.), Brian Alers (P. Geo.) and George Otten demonstrates the Company's commitment to this project in its attempt to establish a near term source of cash flow for the Company.
Bates-Hunter Purchase Agreement Extension
Additionally, the Company is pleased to announce it has received a six month extension on its right to purchase the Bates-Hunter Gold Mine. This extension should allow the completion of the dewatering, rehabilitation and other related mine activities.
Wits Basin has retained the services of a consulting geologist with extensive Colorado experience specializing in the structural geology of vein deposits
Brian Alers, BA, MS, (PG-2951) has 25 years of exploration experience, 10 years of which has been in Colorado and the Rocky Mountain USA region. Mr. Alers specializes in the identification of vein-forming mechanisms and the prediction of ore-shoot geometries through the use of modern structural geological techniques.
Progress Report by Registered Geologist Brian Alers
"Shaft rehabilitation and de-watering of the Bates-Hunter Gold Mine in Central City Colorado USA has progressed to the point that the 93- and 112-foot levels of the mine are now accessible for inspection. Geological mapping and sampling of the 112-foot level was completed by the end of September, 2005. Wits Basin's on-site, in-house laboratory assay results were very favorable. Fire assay and multi-element geochemical reports from an external registered assay lab are pending for 17 additional grab, channel, and muck rock chip samples taken from the accessible portions of the 112-foot level.
Geological mapping and sampling of the newly exposed 112-level, coupled with a compilation of existing data has identified three potential target types that could lead to the discovery of high-grade gold ore. The three target types are as follows: 1) untouched footwall and hanging wall veins, 2) new undeveloped parallel veins, and 3) gold and silver telluride mineralization.
Untouched Footwall and Hanging Wall Veins
New exposures on the 112-foot level show that the old time miners only mined the high-grade central portion of the Bates vein, and 5-6 feet of vein material may still exist in the hanging wall of major stopes.
Just east of the shaft, on the 112-foot level, the Bates vein consists of a 2 to 8 inch thick coarse sulfide vein on the footwall of the zone, along with 8 feet of sheeted hanging wall veins which flank approximately 3 feet of mined material. The sulfide vein remains substantially untouched along the foot wall rib of the drift. The hanging wall veins consist of a parallel series of 2 to 4 inch thick limonitic clay and quartz rubble veins occurring about every foot or so between sericite, clay and pyrite altered wallrock. Historical mining seems to have focused on the extraction of only the richest 3 feet of veins immediately adjacent to the sulfide vein.
New Undeveloped Veins
Compilation of existing data suggests that structural features control the emplacement and geometry of the gold ore shoots and deposits in the Central City district of Colorado. In the immediate area of the Bates-Hunter Shaft, considerable potential exists for the discovery of additional zones and shoots within the extensions of 3 unexplored known veins which parallel to the Bates vein. The Gettysburg vein projection lies about 125 feet northwest of the Bates shaft, and has about 800 feet of unexplored strike length. The German vein projects southeast of the Bates shaft and may be only 40 feet away from the Bates vein footwall. The Gaston vein projects 200 feet southeast of the Bates shaft and has 1200 feet of unexplored strike length.
Gold and Silver Telluride Mineralization
Central City was the first gold discovery in the state of Colorado and was subjected to a frenzy of early activity. The Bates vein was the second vein discovered in the district, on May 19, 1859, (Fossett, 1896), and was in the center of early mining in the area. Gold and Silver telluride mineralization was mentioned in ore from the Gregory vein (500 ft Southeast of the Bates), by Pierce in 1890, but telluride minerals were not documented until 1908 at the War Dance Mine. By 1908 the upper portions of most early mines were mined-out, so the true character and tenor of the early ore was unknown.
The telluride mineralization in the Central City district is considered to represent the last stage of mineralization activity. The highest grade veins consist of fine hairline to 1/2 inch wide veinlets of black quartz enclosed within white clay-sericite-pyrite alteration envelopes that are not immediately obvious. They often follow existing veins, or cross-cut them in late stage fractures. Evidence suggests that the historical mining activities on the Bates vein were conducted oblivious of this type of gold mineralization. Considerable potential exists to identify and mine these extremely high-grade types of gold and silver veins both in the hanging wall of existing veins and as a distinct vein type."
Wits Basin's CEO, Vance White states, "We have always believed that the historic reports from this property were valid. The state and local records show that four million ounces of gold were mined from the immediate area surrounding the Bates-Hunter project, which itself produced in excess of 750,000 of those ounces. We anticipate positive assay results within the next few weeks to confirm our in-house results."
About Wits Basin Precious Minerals Inc.
We are a minerals exploration and development company holding interests in four exploration projects and currently do not claim to have any mineral reserves on any project. Our common stock trades on the Over-the-Counter Bulletin Board under the symbol "WITM." To find out more about Wits Basin Precious Minerals Inc. (OTC BB: WITM.OB, News), visit our website at www.witsbasin.com
Forward-Looking Statements and Risk Factors
Certain statements contained in this press release are forward-looking in nature and are based on the current beliefs and assumptions of our management. Words like "may," "could," "should," "anticipate," "believe," "estimate," "expect," "intend," "plan," "predict," and similar expressions and their variants may be used to identify forward-looking statements. Such statements are valid only as of today, and we disclaim any obligation to update this information. These statements are subject to known and unknown risks and uncertainties that may cause actual future experience and results to differ materially from the statements made. These statements are based on our current beliefs and expectations as to such future outcomes.
The exploration for and development of mineral deposits involves significant financial risks, which even experience and knowledge may not eliminate, regardless of the amount of careful evaluation applied to a process. While the discovery of a mineral deposit may result in substantial rewards, few properties are ultimately developed into producing mines. Moreover, we cannot make any estimates regarding probable reserves and mineral resources in connection with any of our projects and any estimates relating to possible reserves are subject to significant risks. Therefore, no assurance can be given that any size of reserves or grades of reserves will be realized. If a discovery is made, the mineral deposit discovered, assuming recoverable, may differ from the reserves and mineral resources already discovered and recovered by others in the same region of the planned areas of exploration.
The cost of exploration and exploitation can be extensive and there is no assurance that we will have the resources necessary or the financing available to pursue projects we currently hold interests in or to acquire interests in other mineral exploration projects that may become available. The risks are numerous and detailed information regarding these risks may be found in filings made by us with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including our most recent annual report on Form 10-KSB, quarterly reports on Form 10-QSB and reports on Form 8-K.
For Further Information, Contact:
Aurelius Consulting Group, Inc., Century Bank Building,
541 S. Orlando Avenue, Suite 206, Orlando, FL 32751
Fax: (407) 644-0758