Caltha Kimberlite Discovered In Nunavut


Robert T. Boyd, President and CEO of Ashton Mining of Canada Inc. ("Ashton") is pleased to announce the discovery of the Caltha kimberlite on the Ric property in Nunavut.

Ashton has now completed its winter 2003 programs on the Ric, Kim and Kikerk Lake properties in the Coronation Gulf region of Nunavut and the Green property in the Northwest Territories. As outlined in Ashton's news releases dated December 20, 2002 and March 7, 2003, the programs were carried out under the Slave Joint Venture and the Kikerk Lake Joint Venture.

Slave Joint Venture
Ric Property - Caltha Kimberlite

The Caltha kimberlite is situated approximately 14 km southeast of the Perseus kimberlite and 24 km northeast of the Anuri kimberlite discovered by Kennecott Canada Exploration Inc. and Tahera Corporation. Caltha was discovered by drilling two vertical holes into the central and eastern portions of an electromagnetic ("EM") anomaly that measures 160 m x 75 m and underlies a narrow lake approximately one km in length. The vertical drill holes were spaced 80 m apart and oriented along the length of the anomaly. After passing through 22 m of ice and water and approximately 10 m of overburden, the holes intersected diatreme facies kimberlite and terminated in kimberlite at depths of 145 m and 175 m respectively. Ashton will process the drill core by caustic dissolution at its North Vancouver laboratory and expects to announce diamond results in the third quarter.

Two holes were also drilled to test a second EM anomaly on the Ric property. Located approximately six km east of Caltha, this anomaly is situated within the interpreted source area of a highly anomalous indicator mineral dispersion. More than 600 indicator minerals, including a 0.4 mm diamond, were recovered from a till sample collected in this area. The drilling confirmed the presence of three narrow kimberlite dykes, the largest interpreted to have a true width of approximately one metre. These kimberlite intercepts do not adequately explain the indicator mineral dispersion. Further exploration of this area is therefore required.

Kim and Green Properties

During the winter program, one EM anomaly was drill tested on the Kim property. No kimberlite was intersected.

On the Green property in the Northwest Territories, two holes were drilled on a shallow lake to test an EM target at the apex of a well-defined indicator mineral dispersion. A vertical hole

drilled at the centre of the anomaly to a depth of 102 m intersected a 0.2 m wide kimberlite dyke at 80 m. The second hole was collared 115 m north of the first. It was drilled across the anomaly in a southerly direction at an inclination of 62 degrees from horizontal to a depth of 148 m. The hole intersected two kimberlite dykes measuring 0.1 m and 0.2 m at 24 m and 94 m respectively. These narrow kimberlite intersections do not adequately explain the indicator mineral dispersion that originates at the lake and further work is therefore required.

The Slave Joint Venture holds approximately 238,000 hectares of mineral claims in areas of Nunavut and the Northwest Territories known to be prospective for diamonds. The joint venture is governed by an agreement between Ashton and Pure Gold Minerals Inc. in which the respective interests of the parties are currently 89.4 percent and 10.6 percent. The summer phase of the 2003 program will include follow-up indicator mineral sampling to better define known dispersion anomalies and upgrade geophysical targets.

Kikerk Lake Joint Venture

The Kikerk Lake property is located in the Coronation Gulf region of Nunavut. The diamondiferous Potentilla and Stellaria kimberlites were identified on the property in 2001 and 2002 respectively.

The winter portion of the 2003 program announced in Ashton's news release dated March 7 has now been completed. Three electromagnetic anomalies associated with indicator mineral dispersions and underlying lakes approximately one km west of Potentilla were tested by drilling. At one anomaly, two angle holes drilled at inclinations of 46 degrees and 65 degrees from horizontal intersected approximately 0.6 m and 0.3 m of kimberlite respectively. This anomaly is located about 1.2 km west of the Stellaria kimberlite associated with a two km long linear structure. No kimberlite was intersected at the other two anomalies.

Exploration on the Kikerk Lake property will continue during the summer. Field activities will include follow-up on a number of unexplained indicator mineral and geophysical anomalies through heavy mineral sampling, ground geophysical surveys and prospecting.

Exploration on the Kikerk Lake property is governed by a joint venture agreement among Ashton, Caledonia Mining Corporation ("Caledonia") and Northern Empire Minerals Ltd. Ashton has a 52.5 percent interest in the property and has exercised an option with Caledonia to increase its interest to 59.5 percent. Northern Empire has a 30 percent joint venture interest and is participating in the current program.

Ashton is the operator of the programs and Brooke Clements, Professional Geologist and Ashton's Vice President, Exploration, is responsible for their design and conduct, and the verification and quality assurance of analytical results.

For further information, please contact:          

Robert T. Boyd        -or-         Ariel Bowers          -or-        visit our website:
President and CEO                   Investor Relations                   
(604) 983-7750                        (604) 983-7750                      email: