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More from Berling Turnpike, Newington, CT

Posted by MIchael Sharpe  
MIchael Sharpe June 15, 2012 04:27PM
Here are some other samples from the period when they were blasting into the traprock.
open | download - dd430.jpg (194.8 KB)
open | download - dd432.jpg (215.2 KB)
open | download - dd433.jpg (184.9 KB)
Tim Jokela Jr June 15, 2012 09:09PM
Calcite, or quartz... no way to tell from photos. I'd suggest an acid test, or examine with a loupe or low power scope for crystal habit, very easy to distinguish the two with either method.
Howard Heitner June 18, 2012 01:41AM
Hard to tell precisely from the pictures. I see some areas that look like calcite. (check hardness with knife or steel nail) The other white mineral could be prehnite, which is sometimes that color in Connecticut traprock.
Daniel jacobs June 18, 2012 02:02AM
By the way, its Berlin Turnpike. And where is this, I live 10 minutes from berlin?
MIchael Sharpe June 18, 2012 05:33AM
It's the site of the Duncan Donuts next to the Wendys. You are right it is the Berlin Turnpike. They were blasting the basalt to create more site. I suggest as you are driving keep an eye out for construction sites where they are blasting rock.
These were found in 2008. I don't think there is anything to collect unless you want to hammer the rock walls.
Daniel jacobs June 18, 2012 06:00AM
I know exactly where that is. Those are some nice specimens you have there.
P. Michael Hutchins August 03, 2014 03:36PM
According to a fluorescent-mineral collector whom I just got some from, the interesting thing is fluorescent calcite.
steven garza August 04, 2014 11:55PM
Dear Mike S. & H;

Almost 35 yr. ago, I collected that site when the bluff (which is no longer there & you are collecting the remains) was occupied atop by the Berlin drive-in & they had blasted to put in the Wendy's (1st kid on that block); as a matter of fact, when they opened, we were allowed to collect there, after buying a meal (until we were collecting, they hadn't a single customer, all day; as we started to collect, 4 cars drove in for dine-in). Yes, the calcite is fl. AND ph., a light yellow, but, some of the quartz & datolite was, also - a sort of "dirty" white; I believe trpped organics is the cause.

Did you know, that (facing the Wendy's, at the front left corner of their sidewalk) there was a HUGE pocket, filled with large (6 - 9" stout scalenos) yellow calcites, sprinkled with cuboctohedral pyrites & tiny white sprays of mordenite, with hairs up to 1/4"? Tony Albini was the thinnest & he's the one who slithered into the hole; Chris Tomkus is who intro'ed me to the spot & thought those hairs were "byssolite", &, even had them confirmed (by sight) who by a "Patterson expert". I was doubtful (certain characteristics kept screaming it was a zeolite), so, I tested a sample, in front of Chris, &, within 15 min. in HCl, they were GONE! I believe it was the first locality, in CT, for the mineral & the best. If I hadn't my doubts, noone would have been the wiser. The babingtonites were TINY, but, very sharp, on quartz xls.

Your friend, Steve
Harold Moritz August 05, 2014 02:14PM
Thanks for posting those historical details about this site. Could you please add that info to the locality page and mineral details? They'll only be lost in this forum. I've done some upgrades to the page but havent gotten back to it lately.
When the DnD was going in, there were times when stuff was abundant, other times it was barren (usually when I showed up!). Some folks who lived nearby got some very nice pieces of golden calcite with prehnite, quartz and datolite, some of which I ended up with when one guy moved outta state, I havent gotten round to photographing them yet. The mordenite was kinda scarce and I didnt know what it was either and had an XRD done, which confirmed it (I think Peter Cristofono of the Boston club did so as well). I think it is the only Conn. site for that zeolite. The calcite fluoresces the same bright yellow-white in all UV wavelengths, just like the golden calcite and the clam shells themselves from Ruck's Pit down in Ft. Drum, Florida. I suspect hydrocarbons are the activator in both places.
steven garza August 05, 2014 10:48PM
Dear Harold;

I forgot those calcites also had yellow-green 1/2 spheres of prehnite, also; I've a BUNCH of really nice pieces, still in storage. We collected for nearly 4 months, before they actually poured the foundation & erected the building. EVERY trip was a winner. I believe I'm the only person who has an example of every mineral found at that locality (I think there were 10; one is a single example). I'll see what I can add/write up, later.

Your friend, Steve
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