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North American Nickel Options the Nickel-Copper-PGE Wahnapitae Intrusive Complex Near Sudbury, Ontario; Drops Bell Lake and Woods Creek

April 18, 2012

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - April 18, 2012) - North American Nickel Inc. (TSX VENTURE:NAN)(OTCBB:WSCRF) (CUSIP: 65704T 108) is pleased to announce that it has entered into an arms' length option agreement (the "Option Agreement") with certain parties pursuant to which it may acquire a 100% interest in a nickel-copper-platinum group element property in the Sudbury area (the "Option"). The Wahnapitae Intrusive Complex property ("WIC Property") comprises 10 unpatented claims that cover an area measuring 3 km by 2 km of the central portion of the Complex. Access to the property is excellent via paved and gravel roads and trails. Nearby infrastructure includes power lines and the community of Wahnapitae.

Dr. Mark Fedikow, P.Geo. (President and C.O.O.) states: "This underexplored nickel-copper-platinum group element property is close to Sudbury, has excellent access and infrastructure, and significant historic exploration results. It provides North American Nickel with a rare opportunity. We are able to quickly, and inexpensively, assess and explore the WIC Complex. We will mobilize crews to the site this spring, acquire and build our geoscientific databases and quickly develop targets for potential 2012 drilling, based on integration of this information."

The Wahnapitae Intrusive Complex - Nickel-Copper-PGE Property

The WIC Property is situated 13 km southeast of Sudbury and 1 km south of Trans Canada Highway 17 at Wahnapitae. It is an elongate 5.6 km by 2.4 km layered mafic intrusion trending northeast-southwest that comprises nickel-copper-PGE mineralized gabbro-norite and a gabbro "Injection Breccia Zone". The gabbro-norite segment includes massive and layered olivine-bearing norite, norite and gabbro whereas the Injection Breccia Zone consists of massive to fine-and coarse-grained gabbro. Geochemical and mineralogical studies at Laurentian University (Sudbury, Ontario) indicate the norite and gabbro have been intruded into continental settings near a plate margin with evidence to suggest up to 40% contamination of the parent magma with continental crust material. Depletion of nickel and copper in the gabbro-norite indicates some fractionation of these metals has occurred.

A Limited History of Exploration

The WIC Property has received only sporadic exploration and no systematic programs using modern techniques and technologies have been applied to the property. Historic work along the southern edge of the WIC Property has documented the presence of extensive zones of gossanous outcrop. Public records show that other sampling of mineralization within the project area show enrichment in Ni-Cu-Co-PGMs. Early ground geophysical surveys outlined multiple electromagnetic conductors at the southern edge of the Complex that were never drill tested and large north-south magnetic anomalies have been delineated at the eastern edge of the Complex.

Exploration Strategy

Exploration of the WIC Property will utilize a combination of prospecting and mapping, airborne and ground geophysical surveys and mechanical trenching and blasting of gossanous zones on the property to provide representative material for assay. North American Nickel plans a drill program to test integrated geological-geophysical-geochemical targets subsequent to the initial phase of data acquisition.

Terms of the Option Agreement

In order to exercise the Option and earn its interest in the WIC Property, the Company must make cash payments in the aggregate amount of $120,000 and issue an aggregate of 225,000 common shares to the optionors over the three year term of the Option Agreement. The Company must also fund minimum exploration expenses on the WIC property of $63,000 over the term of the Option Agreement. Upon exercise of the option, the optionors will retain a 2% net smelter royalty ("NSR") in the WIC Property and the Company will be required to make advance NSR payments of $8,000 per annum, commencing in August of 2015. The Company has the right to buy back 50% of the NSR for $1,000,000 at any time prior to the commencement of commercial production on the WIC Property.

The Option Agreement is subject to the acceptance by the TSX Venture Exchange.

Bell Lake and Woods Creek Properties

North American Nickel has not renewed its option agreement with the vendors of the Bell Lake and Woods Creek properties in the southwest Sudbury Basin area due to less than encouraging exploration results. Exploration will be focused on their Post Creek-Halcyon and Wahnapitae Intrusive Complex properties.

Qualified Person

All technical information in this release has been reviewed by Dr. Mark Fedikow, P.Geo, who is the Qualified Person for the Company and President and Chief Operating Officer, North American Nickel Inc.

About North American Nickel

North American Nickel is a mineral exploration company with 100% owned properties in Maniitsoq, Greenland, Sudbury, Ontario, and the Thompson, Manitoba nickel belt. VMS Ventures Inc. (TSX VENTURE:VMS) owns approx. 45% of NAN.

The Maniitsoq property in Greenland is a district scale project. It comprises a 4,983 square km mineral exploration licence covering numerous high-grade nickel-copper sulphide occurrences associated with norite and other mafic-ultramafic intrusions. The 70km plus long belt is situated along, and near, the southwest coast of Greenland, which is ice free year round.

The Post Creek/Halycon property in Sudbury is strategically located adjacent to the producing Podolsky copper-nickel-platinum group metal deposit of Quadra FNX Mining. The property lies along the extension of the Whistle Offset dyke structure. Such geological structures host major Ni-Cu-PGM deposits and producing mines within the Sudbury Camp.

The Company has 100% ownership in the high-grade Ni-Cu-PGE South Bay property near Thompson, Manitoba and the large grassroots Thompson North and Cedar Lake properties, which are part of the world-class Thompson Nickel Belt in Manitoba.

Statements about the Company's future expectations and all other statements in this press release other than historical facts are "forward looking statements" within the meaning of Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933, Section 21E of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 and as that term defined in the Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. The Company intends that such forward-looking statements be subject to the safe harbours created thereby. Since these statements involve risks and uncertainties and are subject to change at any time, the Company's actual results may differ materially from the expected results.

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

        North American Nickel Inc.
        Rick Mark
        CEO and Chair
        604-986-2020 or Toll free: 1-866-816-0118

Source: North American Nickel Inc.
604.770.4334 1.866.816.0118
C/o Bennett Jones LLP Attn: Sander Grieve 3400 - One First Canadian Place, P.O. Box 130,
Toronto, Ontario, M5X 1A4