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Santa Teresa Mtn, AZ Pegmatites

Posted by Morion Quartz  
Morion Quartz March 20, 2009 06:49AM

This is my current research project, but the informatoin is scarce and sometimes invalid. I visited Cobre Grande Mtn this last weekend due to a smoky quartz specimen being referenced to this location, but there were no signs (on the west side) and it was not the appropriate geologic unit. However i did notice granitic intrusions to the south and looking at Google, accessible by the Buford road. Though i enjoy trials and errors of chasing mineral occurences not so conveniently listed in a rockhound book, however i would be intrigued if anyone has chased this occurence and what they discovered.

Much appreciated,
Ian Merkel March 20, 2009 03:36PM

I would be interesting in checking it out with you. I live in Morenci. Send me PM if you want some compnay.

Ian Merkel
dm March 31, 2009 03:48PM
I've "chased" it for 7 years, it has been my passion. The story is a long one, for now, suffice to say I
am an economic geologist, I have been accumulating data, photos etc. for years to write a technical article
on it. I have been real busy, so that has been on hold. This has been a "secret" until recently, when someone I brought up there sold
some rocks. There is a geologic story (petrologically, structurally, mineralogically) that needs to be told. I do enjoy
discussing it with people who are interested in more than pretty rocks (although there are plenty of those).

Miles of barren ground out there. It is not for those unable to hike long distances, and many ways to hurt
or kill yourself. Certain times of the year (starting about now) the place crawls with rattlers (8 in one morning one time)., no real trails. Lions, bears.

Awesomely beautiful at the same time.

Let me know if you want to discuss the generalities.
Morion Quartz March 31, 2009 05:30PM
Thank you!

I will be in touch soon.
Tony L. Potucek April 08, 2009 08:42PM
The Santa Teresa Mts are one of my old haunts. I hit it hard on the east side back in the late 1980s and early 1990s. Based on information provided by two brothers who collected edidote crystals on smoky quartz, I rediscovered the area. My largest epidote is about 2.5 cms on albite. Smokies over 40 cms but most are butt ugly. I had good luck with a couple of folks that I took in there, unlike Dean (sorry to hear about that incident). My friends respected my privacy and desire to keep the area quiet. In the late 1980s, I would 4WD in and take the kids camping. I have been over the mountain range from both the east and the west and both are inaccessible now--major washouts and it is designated roadless at this time. It's all shank's ponies from here on out. My collecting areas were about 2-3 miles NE of the area dm is hitting. I believe that I found helvite and sphene as well as epidote and quartz and the usual feldspar suspects. It's a good target and fun to dig, but dm is correct--beautiful and yet deadly for the unitiated. Lots of mountain lion (the biggest worry for me because I travel alone usually), and scatloads of rattlers. Black bear are common but pretty timid. Water is an issue unless you are packing a filter, then you're ok. Temps in the summer are over 100 F even though it is mountainous terrane. Rock climbers used to go there when there were a few roads, and they still may, for all I know. Wii I go back? Yes, at some point, but I live a fur piece from there (5-6 hours). Good luck!
Ryan Lay (2) March 28, 2012 08:12AM
Hi Tony,

If I may be nosy, what incident happened in the wilderness there with Dean?
dm March 28, 2012 01:47PM
I have never even met Tony (though I'd like to), and his digs are not even the same area.

The only official "incident" I am aware of is when someone else whom I've never met (name ?)
who is a friend of someone I clued in to the area, being temporarily lost and
Search and Rescue being called in a few years ago.

Gven the remoteness and ruggedness, another "incident" will happen eventually.
Jim Ricker March 31, 2012 05:41PM
Hey Dean,
Jim Ricker here. I've lost your phone number since 6 or so years ago. I'm back from heat stroke and would like to reconnect. Would you e-mail me at ? Looking forward to talking about some current topics.
Morion Quartz April 26, 2012 06:39AM
It was nice meeting you this weekend in Mule Creek, see you soon.

The incident Tony was refering to in his April 2009 posting was in reference to Dean's comment on some specimens being sold at the 2009 TGMS. The search and rescue event took place in December 2009. Fortunately no one was lost, the individual misunderstood where the meet up location was and fell asleep by the time he was being called for. Dean does imply a critical point, this is not a location you want to be unfit or unprepared for.

I will be passing through CO in late May, if you anticipate being in town, i was hoping to swing by and update you on my findings (GPS, photos, specimens) for the last two years; particularly my recent finds.
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