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Mindat.org 4th International Conference - Myanmar

Last Updated: 11th Nov 2016

By Jolyon & Katya Ralph

This is a LIVE report, keep this page loaded for live updates - new images will appear as they are added.

A little late to start with the live report due to time an internet constraints but 45 adventurous mineral people are about to leave Mandalay this morning to travel to Mogok for the 4th International Mindat.org Conference.

Over the last couple of days we visited Yangon for some touristic activities. Here is the shwedagon pagoda.

Then the night coach to Mandalay

Where we saw the sunset from Mandalay Hill

Now we load up into minivans for the journey to Mogok

Van 3 ready to roll. Katya is in the front seat.

Yesterday we visited the jade market at Mandalay. Miro Ng from Hong Kong examining jade.


One of the free gifts for conference participants.

Beer time.

On the road to Mogok

Entry to Mogok region is highly restricted.

Arrived in Mogok our group settles down for first dinner at the Golden Butterfly hotel.

East Mogok

Testing the hammer

Welcome to Rubyland

Don't mess with Peter

Van 3 is the sensible van.

On the way to the first mine.

Alluvial ruby/sapphire mine. Shwepyiaye mine.

Keep your eyes on the ground!

Graphite flakes in marble

Processing plant to grade the gem-bearing gravel.

Some of our finds :) good trip so far!

The view

Gem hunting

Driving through Mogok

View over east Mogok

Spinel mine!

The group at the Welcone to Ruby Land sign

Handful of spinels

One very nice pink spinel shown to us at the mine.

And back to the hotel with an amazing view over Mogok.

And back to the hotel and our glorious view over Mogok.

Mindat conference is now started.. and Germans are already at the bar..

Henrik Friis giving his presentation on Ivigtut.

We are off for a new adventure!

The trip becomes more adventurous!

After a long drive we arrived to Pyang-Gaung Peridot mine

Mining in action

The professional geologist gives a short lecture about gems and minerals found at the mine

And more digging..

Peridot and enstatite found at Pyang-Gaung mine

After spending the whole morning at the mine we visited Bernardmyo cemetery, a burial spot for British soldiers who died during Anglo-Burmese war.

After hard work we were treated with a fantastic barbecue lunch in Panlin village

Everyone in Myanmar is so happy and friendly!

On the way back

Ruby at the gen market

Special guest of the conference Dr. Adolf Peretti talking about mines of Mogok

Every participant got a Map of Mogok from Dr. Peretti as a gift

Dr Peretti showing some hackmannite.

Second presentation of the evening by Kevin Downey was about cave voids

But Pu Tzu was dreaming about spinel

Evgenios Petrides, Adolf Peretti and me with Dr Peretti's new book.

On the way to Topaz mine through rain and mud

"45" minute walk

A lot to see around

Some people were lucky enough to get a lift

Mud, mud, glorious mud..

The view of a spinel mine that we passed on the way

Waking through the jungle

And 2 hours later we arrived at the mine where we had a warm welcome

The mine was very narrow and steep, only the bravest dared to go inside

The view of the mine

Time to go back

After a looooooong journey we are back to the hotel

Some people had to change into basoes - traditional Myanmar men's clothes kindly provided by our van drivers

Special surprise of the afternoon is visit to the cave where 6.3 million ruby crystal was found

Gem panning in the cave

Mogok valley

Conference participants

Lin Yaung mine

Picking up loose gems from waste pile from the mine

As the miners sorted the ruby rock any loose crystals were put into this locked box

We visited the orphanage to leave gifts and donations we brought. The children lined up to wave goodbye to us as we left.

Kadoke Tat Ruby mine

Kicking back on the boat trip

For those who did not want to walk there was a premium taxi service

Mya Theindan Pagoda

Royal Palace in Mandalay

Sunset view from 1.7 km long wooden bridge

It's not over 'till the Mandalay lady sings.

Last sunset in Myanmar before we fly home. What a beautiful country!

Article has been viewed at least 12437 times.


Thanks for the photos.
I recognised a few suspects from the Madagascar excursion.
Looking forward to your future postings.
Enjoy the rest of the expedition.

Bob Beattie
6th Nov 2016 7:45am
Thanks for posting the picture of the graphite flakes in marble. I don't suppose any mindaters will be bringing any of that home with them?
Have fun!

John A. Jaszczak
6th Nov 2016 6:36pm
Thanks for posting these photos. I've dreamed of going to Myanmar for years. Can't wait to see more of them. Have a great time!

Brian Kosnar
7th Nov 2016 2:04am
Thank you for showing us the story, but of course that I do not see me by those distant lands.
I'm happy for the expeditionary.

Jose Miguel Sola Fdez.
7th Nov 2016 9:52am
Hope no Mindaters, jade miners or jade were injured by a falling space junk:

Marek Chorazewicz
11th Nov 2016 10:23pm

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