Log InRegister
Home PageAbout MindatThe Mindat ManualHistory of MindatCopyright StatusWho We AreContact UsAdvertise on Mindat
Donate to MindatCorporate SponsorshipSponsor a PageSponsored PagesMindat AdvertisersAdvertise on Mindat
Learning CenterWhat is a mineral?The most common minerals on earthInformation for EducatorsMindat Articles
Minerals by PropertiesMinerals by ChemistryAdvanced Locality SearchRandom MineralRandom LocalitySearch by minIDLocalities Near MeSearch ArticlesSearch GlossaryMore Search Options
Search For:
Mineral Name:
Locality Name:
The Mindat ManualAdd a New PhotoRate PhotosLocality Edit ReportCoordinate Completion ReportAdd Glossary Item
Mining CompaniesStatisticsThe ElementsUsersBooks & MagazinesMineral MuseumsMineral Shows & EventsThe Mindat DirectoryDevice Settings
Photo SearchPhoto GalleriesNew Photos TodayNew Photos YesterdayMembers' Photo GalleriesPast Photo of the Day Gallery

The 1 Minute and 30 Second Collecting Trip

Last Updated: 26th Oct 2018

By Jeffrey Glover

A few Wednesdays ago, while visiting Kevin Downey at his Well Arranged Molecules business, he asked me if I wanted to see a local (and rather obscure) mineral collecting locality. Yes! Probably known to Massachusetts and neighboring collectors, I never heard of the place. Locally called the Northampton Zinc Mine, it's part of the Loudville, MA lead / zinc ore complex. If you check here in Mindat, you can see various old mines and prospects dot the area. Mining has been done in this area since the late 1600's! The area was last worked around 1865. Needless to say, the area contains some quite old workings.

Kevin said that since I am a Quartz collector, I'd have a good chance at finding a decent "souvenir" piece. Not just a chunk of whitish quartz but something with crystals on it. Sure I said. I always like to explore old workings like this. The weather was cold and rain was about to happen so we at least had some time.

We parked the car at the end of a dirt / gravel road and walked a short distance through the woods to the dumps and trenches present. That walk took about 1 minute. I could immediately see that the wooded hillside was full of rocks and debris. While Kevin was chatting with a fellow collector (who was digging a hole) I looked down at a large chunk of whitish quartz, partially covered with leaves. I turned it over and immediately noticed a 3 inch deep druzy quartz crystal vug. Good enough for me. I grabbed the 40+ pound chunk and headed back to the car as the rain started. 30 seconds to find this piece.

I figure that when I got home, I could trim the piece down with careful hammer and chisel work and later with a diamond saw to reduce it to a size that would be decent to add to one of my display shelves. Many specimens in my collection are what I call "story" pieces. This will be one of them.

So..... this will go on record as the fastest I have ever found something worth keeping on any field trip that I've been on over the past 50 years. After some trimming, what was left that will be cleaned and trimmed a bit more. Exposed was a small vug with some corroded looking Sphalerite crystals. One of witch is a crude crystal about 1 inch across. Not a micro! Fun! Jeff.

Article has been viewed at least 427 times.


In order to leave comments to this article, you must be registered
Mineral and/or Locality  
Mindat.org is an outreach project of the Hudson Institute of Mineralogy, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Public Relations by Blytheweigh.
Copyright © mindat.org and the Hudson Institute of Mineralogy 1993-2019, except where stated. Most political location boundaries are © OpenStreetMap contributors. Mindat.org relies on the contributions of thousands of members and supporters.
Privacy Policy - Terms & Conditions - Contact Us Current server date and time: April 22, 2019 21:47:39
Go to top of page