spring rockhound run-Black Agate Thunder Egg mine, Pebble Terrace, Opal Hill mine and Black Hills geode beds

Filed under: Coming Events,regular postings — Gary January 31, 2007 @ 11:12 pm

Here is my next planned trip;

Run Announcement


fire_opal fire opal fire_agatefire_agate_2  fire agate

Spring Rock Hound Run 4-13-07 thru 4-17-07, camping at Coon Hollow Camp Ground in the Mule Mts. We will be going to the Black Agate Thunder Egg mine



Quartzsite show notes, pictures -mushroom Rhyolite, Tiffany Stone, True Blue Lapis etc

Filed under: regular postings — Gary @ 2:01 pm

Blue_Lapis_california True Blue Lapis from California

“Ok, here it is, as requested, tons of photos I took during this past saturday the 27th. According to every vendor I ask, it was a disappointing show. i guess it because the Tucson show overlapped the Pow wow show. So it must of stunted the real crowds at Quartzsite this year.”

crazy_lace Our first stop, a giant pile of crazy lace for $4 per pound. Did we buy any? Yes, but at the end of the day from another vendor who had the same stuff at $3 per pound. Prices were dropping fast if you were willing to spend a little extra cash. Or took the time to look around for the better deals.

mushroom_Rhyolite Mushroom Rhyolite – This stone is a metamorphosed Rhyolite

**I am getting ahold of the people that own this claim, story on them and mushroom rhyolite to follow-



Apatite- Minerals of the day

Filed under: Mineral of the day,regular postings — Gary @ 2:00 am

Apatite_crystals Apatite_crystals_2



“Apatite is infrequently used as a gemstone. Transparent stones of clean color have been faceted, and chatoyant specimens have been cabochon cut.”

Apatite is a group of phosphate minerals, usually referring to hydroxylapatite, fluorapatite, and chlorapatite, named for high concentrations of OH, F, or Cl ions, respectively, in the crystal. The formula of the admixture of the three most common species is written as Ca5(PO4)3(OH, F, Cl), and the formulae of the individual minerals are written as Ca5(PO4)3(OH), Ca5(PO4)3F and Ca5(PO4)3Cl, respectively.

Apatite is one of few minerals that are produced and used by biological micro-environmental systems. Hydroxylapatite is the major component of tooth enamel, and a large component of bone material.



Do you make your own Jewelry? 4th Annual Bench Jewelers Conference & Expo

Filed under: Coming Events,regular postings — Gary @ 1:15 am
4th Annual Bench Jewelers Conference & Expo
Buffalo, NY
April 27 29, 2007

Pre-Conference Seminar April 26th
For More Information & to Register log onto: 

Paleontological Resources Preservation Act- House of Representatives

Filed under: regular postings — Gary @ 1:09 am

Paleontological Resources Preservation Act (Introduced in House)

To provide for the protection of paleontological resources on Federal lands,
and for other purposes.Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

(1) CASUAL COLLECTING- The term `casual collecting’ means the collecting of areasonable amount of common invertebrate and plant paleontological resourcesfor non-commercial personal use, either by surface collection or the use of non-powered hand tools resulting in only negligible disturbance to the Earth’ssurface and other resources. As used in this paragraph, the terms `reasonable amount’, `common invertebrate and plant paleontological resources’ and negligible disturbance’ shall be determined by the Secretary.

HR 554 IH
1st Session
H. R. 554
To provide for the protection of paleontological resources on Federal lands,
and for other purposes.
January 18, 2007



vermiculite- Mineral of the day. Health Risk?

Filed under: Mineral of the day,regular postings — Gary January 29, 2007 @ 7:45 pm

vermiculite_2 Vermiculite_3Vermiculite with stellerite balls

Vermiculite is a natural, non toxic mineral which expands with the application of heat. The expansion process is called exfoliation and it is routinely accomplished in purpose-designed commercial furnaces. Vermiculite is formed by hydration of certain basaltic minerals, and is often found in association with asbestos. The mineral was extracted during the 1960s in Libby, Montana, under the commercial name Zonolite (the Zonolite brand was acquired by the W.R. Grace Company in 1963). Mining operations on the Libby site stopped in 1990 in response to asbestos contamination. The United States government estimates that it is used in more than 35 million homes.



reader sent in these rocks, any suggestions?

Filed under: regular postings — Gary @ 7:32 pm

Can anyone tell me what kind of rock these are?  They are green with white crystals in them which kinda looks like vermiculite.  A few have what looks like barnacles in them instead.  Any ideas would be greatly appreciated.

unknown_rocks unknown_rocksunknown_rocks_2

Melissa and My Furry Friends, Reba, Tiger, Lucas and Jagger as well as Cally, Mick and Bufford


Jason Hinkle on Amethyst, Carnelian, Plume and Moss Thundereggs & Bio

Filed under: interviews(new),regular postings — Gary January 28, 2007 @ 3:00 pm

opal_agate rock_pic

…If you share the same interest or just want to talk rock,feel free to email me and I’m more than happy to chat. Or if you happen to travel through my part of Oregon, be sure to swing in and say Hello…

The story of a growing addiction
Since the time I could walk I can remember my parents taking me into
the woods camping, fishing and our favorite hobby was collecting shed
antlers. Just like many young kids, I can remember picking up rocks while on
my adventures into the woods. Agates, Jaspers, Petrified Woods, Arrowheads
and more all made it home in my pocket. It wasn’t until the early 1990’s
when I was still in Middle School at the age of 12 or 13 I took a unusual
interest in Gold Prospecting. I worked on a farm and used my pay
checks to buy gold pans, vials, and eventually I saved enough to buy a
sluice box and metal detector. Rather than our normal shed antler collecting
grounds, we found ourselves traveling from the Pacific Ocean at Sixes River
to the east side of Oregon in the Sumpter / Granite area chasing the elusive Gold.
No matter where I went chasing gold, there was always a “cool rock” to be found
and stuffed in my pocket. As time moved along and my gold vials never really
seemed to fill up, I kept acquiring a high interest in Rocks, Gems, and
Minerals and slowly kept bringing home more of these treasures to sort,
clean and pile anywhere I had a empty void.After a year or so of collecting I made a visit to a second hand/antique
store here in my local town and made my first discovery of a stone
called The Thunderegg. I made several visits to this place until I purchased
every last Thunderegg in the wooden box where they rested. These
Thundereggs were already cut to expose the amazing variety of agate
interiors they held and is the start of a personal addiction, and the origin
of my now box upon box full of cut and polished Thundereggs.It was shortly after I caught the rockhound bug I was introduced to a
relative of mine who has been rockhounding for years. During hours
of visits I made to his home I started to learn the steps on how the rock
became the polished jewels you see in every rockshop.

Antelope Valley Gem & Mineral Show

Filed under: Coming Events,regular postings — Gary @ 12:31 pm

The Antelope Valley Gem & Mineral Show is going to be on April 28th and
29th at Lancaster High School. The show will feature a touch table,
auction table, bakery, food, vendors, tailgaters, and a cool raffle
drawing. This will be fun for the whole family. Please come and join us.

Please contact the AV gem club at av_Gem@yahoo. com or call 661-943-5157
thank you


John Day Fossil Beds -National Monument

Filed under: regular postings — Gary January 27, 2007 @ 1:34 pm

paintedhill3 paintedhill2paintedhill

John Day Fossil Beds National Monument is a 14,000 acre (57 km²) park near Kimberly, Oregon. Located within the John Day River Basin, this U.S. National Monument is world-renowned for its well-preserved, remarkably complete record of fossil plants and animals, a record that spans more than 40 of the 65 million years of the Cenozoic Era (also known as the Age of Mammals and Flowering Plants). The monument is divided into three units: Painted Hills (named for the delicately colored stratifications) northwest of Mitchell, Sheep Rock which is northwest of Dayville, and Clarno which is 20 miles west of Fossil. Blue Basin is a volcanic ash bowl transformed into claystone by eons of erosion, colored pastel blue by minerals.

Visitors can follow trails into the badlands and examine fossils displayed at the visitor center while scientists continue field investigations and the painstaking analysis of the monument’s vast fossil record.

The fossil beds contain vestiges of the actual soils, rivers, ponds, watering holes, mudslides, ashfalls, floodplains, middens, trackways, prairies, and forests, in an unbroken sequence that is one of the longest continuous geological records. The rocks are rich with the evidence of ancient habitats and the dynamic processes that shaped them; they tell of sweeping changes in the John Day Basin. Great changes, too, have taken place in this area’s landscape, climate, and in the kinds of plants and animals that have inhabited it.