Strongbow Exploration Inc. (SBW: TSXV) is pleased to announce it has entered into an option agreement with a private land owner to acquire the historic Parker gold mine located within the Gold Hill mining district of North Carolina, USA. Highlights of the acquisition include:
- Access to approximately 800 acres within the Gold Hill mining district - North Carolina's most important gold producing region - including approximately 300 acres covering the historic Parker gold mine;
- The Parker mine property has a North Carolina mining permit;
- Most historic gold production came from hydraulic mining of weathered saprolite with limited production from bedrock;
- Bedrock mineralization includes spectacular concentrations of coarse gold in a series of southwest striking quartz veins ranging from centimetre scale up to five metres in width;
- Gold mineralization also occurs in foliated and altered volcanic and sedimentary rocks adjacent to the quartz veins;
- The Parker mine site has never been tested by diamond drilling.
The Parker gold mine property is located within the Carolina Slate Belt (CSB), in the southeastern part of the Gold Hill mining district. Gold Hill is considered the most productive gold producing region of North Carolina with estimated past production of at least 160,000 ounces. The area is approximately 30 km south of the Champion Hills trend currently being explored by Revolution Resources (RV:TSX) and Romarco Minerals (R:TSX). The Parker mine property consists of approximately 300 acres zoned for heavy industrial use including a mining permit issued by the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources.
Gold was first discovered in the Parker mine area in 1800, mining commenced around 1805 and the property was worked intermittently from that point on through to the 1930's. Most gold production came from hydraulic mining of weathered saprolite with limited production from a series of southwest trending quartz veins. Several very large gold nuggets have been recovered from the mine including an eight pound three ounce nugget discovered in 1885. Production records for the Parker mine are lacking, however several sources refer to official gold production of over 10,000 ounces prior to 1896.
Bedrock mineralization is associated with a series of southwest striking quartz veins that range from centimetre scale up to five metres (16 feet) in width. The historic mine workings are currently flooded and inaccessible, however records from property evaluations completed in 1989 and 1992 indicate the veins are associated with a quartz-sericite-chlorite altered stockwork system within felsic to intermediate volcanic tuffs adjacent to a southwest trending contact with mafic volcanic rocks. Fine grained sedimentary rocks are also described locally enveloping the mineralized quartz veins along this contact. The quartz veins reportedly pinch and swell over a strike length of approximately 300 metres (1000 feet). Gold mineralization within the veins is described as coarse free gold, locally occurring in spectacular concentrations. Results from 1989 and 1992 indicate that mineralization extends into the surrounding altered country rock, with reported assays ranging from background values up to 10,500 ppb gold.
Geochemical data also indicate that arsenic, copper and molybdenum represent important potential pathfinder elements for gold mineralization. Of specific interest is a very strong arsenic anomaly identified at the Crystal Hill target area, located approximately 600 metres (1800 feet) along strike to the southwest of the historic Parker mine workings. A number of rock samples collected by Strongbow have confirmed that silicified and sericite altered volcanic and sedimentary rocks contain anomalously high arsenic, copper and molybdenum values.
The Parker mine property has never been tested by geophysical surveys or diamond drilling. Strongbow intends to use these tools to properly evaluate the potential of the property to host significant gold mineralization similar to that identified along the Champion Hills trend and at the Haile gold mine in South Carolina. Planning is underway for a drilling program that will test beneath the historic mine workings, as well as the Crystal Hill target. Preliminary exploration work is expected to start in early April, at the same time as the upcoming drilling program at Strongbow's Midway gold project, located approximately 100 km to the south within the Haile-Brewer gold trend of South Carolina.
The Parker mine option agreement allows Strongbow's wholly owned subsidiary, Palmetto State Gold, Inc. to retain an option to purchase the Parker mine property by making $120,000 in payments to the current owner over a 30 month period ($80,000 in the first year). Upon exercising the option, Palmetto can purchase the property for a maximum price of $10.3 million. The property will also remain subject to a 1.5% gross overriding royalty.
Strongbow's 2011 exploration programs are conducted under the supervision of David Gale, P.Geo.(BC), Vice-President of Exploration for Strongbow and a qualified person under NI 43-101.
STRONGBOW EXPLORATION INC.
/s/"Kenneth A. Armstrong"
Kenneth A. Armstrong
President and CEO
For further information, please contact:
President and CEO
Tel: 604 668 8355
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