Vancouver, B.C. - March 17, 2009 - Pacific Ridge Exploration Ltd. (TSX Venture: PEX) reports that successful land acquisition and initial exploration programs in 2008 have defined attractive phosphate mineralization at numerous locations within a cumulative 127 kilometre length of favorable geologic setting. The 517 square kilometer Tumbler Ridge property is located in east central British Columbia.
The 2008 exploration program has identified widespread sedimentary or "blanket-type" and laterally continuous phosphate mineralization. Of particular note are the Wapiti and Tunnel zones which yielded values to 29.1% P2O5 over 3 metres and 19.4% P2O5 over 3 metres respectively. The exploration program also outlined five additional targets where thicker and higher grade zones of phosphate are exposed. Although the early stage Tumbler Ridge project has only seen its first year of exploration drill-ready targets directed to tonnage and grade definition have been selected.
The drill-ready Wapiti zone, located within the southern portion of the property, consists of an 18 kilometre length of exposed phosphate bearing strata with higher than average grade mineralization. Pacific Ridge sampled and trenched a 4.9 kilometre long portion of the 18 kilometre zone with trench values reaching to 29.1% P2O5 over 3 metres. In several locations, the phosphate horizon occurs as dip sloping beds suggesting opportunity for open pit extraction.
As previously announced, Wapiti is held under option from Lateegra Gold Corp wherein Pacific Ridge may earn up to a 65% interest by making prescribed payments and expenditures over a 5-year period.
The 100 % owned Tunnel zone, located in the northern portion of the property, covers a 900 metre length of the regional phosphate horizon where seven trenches excavated across the zone and spaced roughly equidistant along the 900 m. length of mineralization, averaged 16.1% P2O5 over 3.6 metres. Opportunity for definition of near surface large tonnages occurs within areas of dip sloping mineralization. The Tunnel zone warrants drill testing.
Initial exploration has also discovered five additional phosphate targets; Muinok, Mount Palsson, Meosin, Hook Lake and Windy Camp, within the 127 kilometre long property. Initial sampling yielded assay values to 26.4% P2O5 suggesting potential for defining multiple areas of phosphate mineralization. Continued exploration to define future drill targets is warranted.
Tumbler Ridge Phosphate is located near the communities of Tumbler Ridge and Dawson Creek. Located within close proximity to, rail power and road access plays an important role in determining positive economics for potential future production.
GENERAL PHOSPHATE INFORMATION
Phosphate is one of several key components for generation of fertilizers utilized globally in the agriculture industry as well as the production of industrial supplies, pharmaceutical products and battery technology development. Phosphate mineralization is mined and then concentrated to phosphate rock, from which phosphoric acid (SPA) is an end product. Recent contract sales of SPA, grading in the range of 70% P2O5 had pricing over $800 per tonne.
Pacific Ridge's disclosure of a technical or scientific nature has been reviewed by Wayne J. Roberts, P. Geo., Vice President, exploration of Pacific Ridge and a Qualified Person under the definition of National Instrument 43-101.
"John S. Brock"
John S. Brock
For further information, contact:
Pacific Ridge Exploration Ltd.
John S. Brock
Tel: (604) 604.641.2759
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This release includes certain statements that may be deemed "forward-looking statements". All statements in this release, other than statements of historical facts, that address exploration drilling, exploitation activities and events or developments that Pacific Ridge Exploration Ltd. ("Pacific Ridge") expects to occur, are forward-looking statements. Although Pacific Ridge believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those in forward looking statements include market prices, exploitation and exploration successes, and continued availability of capital and financing and general economic, market or business conditions. Investors are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Pacific Ridge does not assume any obligation to update or revise its forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.