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Rutile area in central California

Last Updated: 14th Dec 2013

By Tony Charlton

After reading the section on Rutile here in mindat I wanted to add to the knowledge base with an unlisted location in California.
There have been many beautiful Rutile specimens, mostly in the form of Rutilated Quartz, found in the area of north central El Dorado and south central Placer counties in central California. I do not know the full range of the deposits, however I have found Rutile (Sagenite) in the areas around Placerville, Georgetown, Foresthill, Quintette and Volcanoville. I have also seen rutilated quartz that was reported to cone from Shingle Springs. This is a district that covers quite a large area. The base rock of the deposits covers a wide range, some areas are granite while others are ambolite schist or mica schist. most of the deposits are hydro-thermal Quartz; however at least one that I know of is a pegmatite. The Quartz associated with Rutile varies from milky to clear veins in some areas while frosted crystals are predominant in other areas and crystals with very good luster are found in other areas. The Rutile ranges from very fine "hairs" to large "pencil lead" size crystals. Sometimes reticulated plates can be found in the Quartz. The crystals are found in all the typical colors of Rutile. There is one place where the classic Rutile crystals have been found but they are small with a dull surface. A few aciculer crystals free of the associated Quartz have been found also. Anatase and Brookite are found in the same general area. Some of the other minerals found in association are Clorite, Calcite, Iron Pyrite, Dolomite, Muscovite, Hematite, etc.

Just a few picks of the material that comes from this area.

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