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New find from Aris

Posted by Uwe Kolitsch  
Uwe Kolitsch December 13, 2007 02:45PM

Locality file updated:
Uwe Kolitsch August 11, 2008 02:25PM
Eudialyte or a related member of the eudialyte group - pale pink platelets.

First confirmation of the report of "eudialyte" in Knorring and Franke (1987).
Structure refinement planned.

Locality file updated.
Uwe Kolitsch August 25, 2008 04:04PM
Kalsilite. EDIT: wrong ID, see below!

Locality file updated.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 07/23/2009 08:45AM by Uwe Kolitsch.
Marco E. Ciriotti August 27, 2008 08:41PM
Well, Uwe! Very interesting news!
Bill Lechner August 29, 2008 03:11AM

Any photos of these ?

Uwe Kolitsch August 29, 2008 10:37AM
Not yet.
Uwe Kolitsch July 23, 2009 09:15AM
New finds (pers. comm. by Prof. Friedrich Koller, University of Vienna, based on chemical analyses on thin sections):
- sérandite
- a rosenbuschite-group mineral

Both appear as small (up to ~20 micron) grains, and are not uncommon in thin sections.
Uwe Kolitsch July 23, 2009 09:31AM
Correction on the "kalsilite"!
EDS analysis showed it to be the the La-analogue of Unnamed (MSH UK-60) (just approved as *******-(La)).
Original misidentification arose because the unit-cell parameters of *******-(La) / *******- (Ce) = IMA 2009-013) are coincidentally very similar to those of kalsilite (Bravais type is identical).
László Horváth July 23, 2009 12:20PM
Hi Uwe,
I am just sending a specimen for id. that has narsarsukite morphology (square, tabular crystal with truncated corners). It shows interesting color zoning with a dark brown, opaque central zone grading to translucent yellow becoming transparent and nearly colorless at the outer edges. Based on morphology, narsarsukite was one of the possible minerals on my "guess list."
Uwe Kolitsch July 24, 2009 10:26AM
Hi Laszlo,
I suspect this could also be a turkestanite/steacyite/iraqite phase.
I have seen and studied similarly colour-zoned xls.

Cheers, Uwe
Uwe Kolitsch August 20, 2009 03:33PM
Another small specimen of a eudialyte group mineral from Aris could be confirmed recently: again (collection Joachim Esche), it's pale pink platelets.
EDS scheduled; the unit-cell parameters are somewhat different from those of the first find.
Uwe Kolitsch May 11, 2011 12:32PM
Finally, a photo of the second find of an eudialyte-group mineral:
Bart Cannon May 12, 2011 01:12AM
Has anyone analyzed the beautiful yellow narsarsukites from the Sweetgrass Hills near Whitlash, Montana ? Xls to one inch.

My collecting trip was inspired by a 1953 American Mineralogist article.

I collected 80 pounds of them back in 1982. I don't think anyone since has visited the locale.

Free samples for analysts with time on their hands.

Much logistics were required to find the place, and much more logistics were required to get out safely.

Metal foreign body in my cornea, and 200 plus porcupine quills in my famous old dog Carbide.

That night after crashing my motorbike into a canyon with my 90 pound pack, I watched a lovely display of the Northern lights with one eye.

And sometimes looked downhill at the kerosene lamps of the Hutterite villlage 12 miles away.

The next morning I put six sedatives into a pan of Kool-Aid, watched Carbide drink it, and then lashed his legs together, wedged him in next to my Jeepster's rear tire with a six foot digging bar, got my scissors and pliers out, cut the tips off the worst of the quills, and proceeded to pull out the first quill. He bucked me and hobbled away.

So off to Havre, Montana 200 miles away, the nearest town with a veterinarian.

At 6 AM the next morning I delivered him. I was told it would be 4 hours before I could collect him.

Then I went to the hardware store where I watched Hutterite children on their hands and knees looking at toys while their parents shopped for necessities. One child was always on lookout for a disapproving parent.

And then, with increasing pain in my eye, I went to the clinic where I was given multiple tests, and then had the metal foreign body GROUND out of my cornea. The metal foreign body had already started to rust. It was not a chisel fragment, but rather a drill cutting from a hole I drilled into the foot peg of my motorbike the morning of the narsarsukite dig. It blew into my eye as I blew the cuttings away, but I didn't notice the irritation until much later in the day.

I expected that my two medical bills would exceed my traveler's checks value and planned to head back to Seattle.

Low and behold, my bill at the clinic was $25. And then the bill at the veterinarian was also $25 ! Four people spent four hours on him.

If you want low cost health care, go to Havre, Montana in 1982

There is much more to the same day including Rocky Boy Reservation Police, eudialyte collecting on Windy Boy Peak, collecting the type locality for calkinsite, and indian women.

Should I continue ? Or is there a sub-category for YARNS that I should post to ?

I'm sure Rock Currier could exceed my stories by 100 to 1.
greg slak May 12, 2011 01:17AM

Wonderful story....

PLEASE continue.....
and then make it into an article to post. These kinds of collecting stories are gems to those of us indoors reading!

greg slak
Bart Cannon May 12, 2011 02:13AM

You are to blame for my continuing with the rest of the story.

So there I am, a few miles South of Havre at the Rocky Boy Indian Reservation headquartes with one pupil the size of a dime due to the atropine application at the clinic.

I am attempting to get permission to collect minerals on their reservation and I find a group of Rocky Boys standing in their central grounds.

They tell me that mineral collecting requires a $250 per day fee because some years ago a local mineral collector collected some smoky quartz crystals which had a total value of $250.

I left dejectedly in defeat from their clatch.

But there was a white guy there who was the director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs. He took me aside and told me to just ignore them, and head up to the area.

So that is what I did even though I felt a bit guilty. But, heck I needed to make a living.

As I proceeded to the nepheline syenite area, a monstrous thunderstorm had arrived. Downpours of rain and breathtaking thunder were ocrurring. I had to put my Jeepster into four wheel drive just to get up the slight grades of the roads. Roads in those areas turn to greasy soup in a rain storm.

With some extra effort I made it up the pass to where the eudialyte pegmatites occur. Just as the storms passed and a pretty orange-pink sunset was showing. I felt relieved and a bit joyful, though Carbide was crumpled up and spaced out in my sleeping bag on the floorboard of my Jeepster.

As I admired the sunset from the pass in my parked vehicle near the calkinsite loclality, and near the eudialyte locality I noticed something disturbing in my rear view mirror.

It was a tribal squad car in mid air ! Like in a movie.

I thought, I'M NOT EVEN OUT OF MY CAR !!!!!

The squad car pulled right up alongside of me. I feared some kind of citation.

But the Rocky Boy tribal member just said hello, and then told me that he really had to gun the engine to get up that sloppy road. And that he was going to drive a spur road because he could use his CB radio to talk to a girl wanted to date from that location. Cool for me. Sorry to imply from the previous e-mail that "indian women" related to me directly.

Then I drove to the opposite side of the main road which was the place I wanted to stay the night to start my hike to the eudialyte pegmatites which I would collect the next day.

Carbide was conscious by then, but not too agile. As we returned at late dusk from the pegmatites he took a flying leap from a small outcrop thinking he was still an athlete, but he rolled down the hill like a ball of jelly.

The next morning I collected the pegmatites. Few vugs, but lots of eudialyte and lamprophyllite. Not much potential commerce.

I was disappointed so it was down to the calkinsite location. I found the vein of calkinsite and burbankite. But fearing the wrath of the tribes I removed the rear tire on my Jeepster to feign a break down. And then put about 10 pounds of ugly beige crud into a box.

Wilson Crook the Third confirmed the presence of burbankite and calkinsite in that batch. I can confirm lanthanum minerals are present, but I have never been able to confirm burkankite or calkinsite except that lanthanum minerals are present in my 10 pounds of crud.

You all remember Wilson Crook III don't you? Texasite.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/12/2011 02:18AM by Bart Cannon.
Rob Woodside May 12, 2011 03:38PM
You mean this Texasite:
That was further described in:
Isn't Wilson Crook III pursuing a career in archaeology now?
Bart Cannon May 13, 2011 12:19AM

Texasite is a praesodymium sulfate of great ill repute.

It caused David Garske a fair amount of pain.

I've already posted on this somewhere on Mindat.

Wilson Crook is now an archaeologist in Texas.

Mineralogy is a good companion to archaeology.

Keep in mind that I've always considered Wilson Crook III to be a great guy who made a peculiar mistake.

I offered to buy back my texasites from my customers, but no one would return one.

Finally got one back when I bought John C. White's mineral collection.

For my history and emphera collection.
Jim Ferraiolo May 13, 2011 04:09PM
He appears to have made more than one.
Uwe Kolitsch May 13, 2011 04:30PM
"I've always considered Wilson Crook III to be a great guy who made a peculiar mistake."

That's a VERY (read: too) polite statement, if one considers how he utterly faked his data.
Harjo Neutkens May 13, 2011 06:31PM
He does have a very appropriate surname ;-)
Don Saathoff May 13, 2011 06:32PM
I'm afraid Crook left a bad taste in thr mouths of a good number of Texas collectors....He "suggested" PGMs in the Coal Creek Serpentine mass.....the Clear Creek Pegmatite moved after his description, etc, etc.

Don S.
Bart Cannon May 14, 2011 06:42AM
The story of Wilson Crook III is so strange that it should be written up in detail.

He is a polite, intelligent, handsome man with a lovely wife.

He could have obtained and retained his PhD in any number of ways.

Why he did what he did defies any explanation.

He also synthesized the cobalt sulfate, albrittonite.

He characterized a new mineral which I think he named ortho-brochantite.

I'm pretty sure I have the full collection. They are worth plenty to me since this story is so bizarre.

FYI........ I buy good fake specimns. They are art.

Note that he NEVER sold a single mineral specimen. He just traded with trusting dealers to get specimens
for his own mineral collection.

He knows how to identify a mineral. His identification of some unknowns I sent him 30 years ago have all held up.

I don't quite understand the serpentine PGM, and the pegmatite comment, but I wonder if I've done business with some of
Wilson's victims on the former.

In 1984 I placed ONE ad in the California Mining Journal indicating that I could analyze fire assay beads for
all eight precious metals. I am still getting business from that ad. Mostly business that I don't want since
the clients are all amateur prospectors. There is a cluster of platinum dreamers in Texas who plague me
regularly for lab work, but there is one I really enjoy. He is a crop duster.

I tell him to just put his money into pesticides. But he has a PGE dream and I can't dissuade him.

My family has been in Texas since before the Alamo, and I am very interested in tracing the family history and in visiting
the Pre-Clovis sites in Texas. Maybe I can trade some fake arrow heads from Wilson Crook III while down there.

I will treasure them.
Uwe Kolitsch February 20, 2012 04:44PM
You thought you can distinguish your Aris sazhinite from all other Aris minerals?

Check this:

More photos to follow.
Patrick Haynes (2) March 25, 2012 02:02AM
Hello Uwe.
Currently I have been perusing several flats of Aris material collected by David Shannon in 1995. Beyond the Mindat images, can you offer any suggestions for ID'ing the various "sazhinites"?
Uwe Kolitsch March 26, 2012 05:46PM
Not much except that any epitaxial platy crystals on sazhinite are not sazhinite.
Uwe Kolitsch May 04, 2012 04:46PM
Heulandite-Na now confirmed from Aris by SXRD and EDS. The measured Si:Al ratio ranges between ~3.5:1 and ~4:1 (analyses on crystal faces) and thus straddles, for the Si-richest compositions, the boundary between heulandite-Na and clinoptilolite-Na.

EDIT: Uploaded a SEM photo:

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 05/04/2012 04:56PM by Uwe Kolitsch.
Uwe Kolitsch May 14, 2012 12:17PM
Joachim Esche uploaded a colour photo of the heulandite-Na:
Uwe Kolitsch November 01, 2012 05:51PM
Albite, which was previously unconfirmed from Aris, has now been identified by SXRD methods as tiny, colourless, twinned plates, which formed as a very late phase. Photos to follow in due time.
Uwe Kolitsch November 16, 2012 04:35PM
Uploaded a photo (thanks Harry!) of an unusual prismatic arisite:
Uwe Kolitsch February 16, 2015 06:41PM
Long time no write, but here are finally some updates and new results:

- Bastnäsite-(La) is a new find; both bastnäsite-(Ce) (dominant) and bastnäsite-(La) (rare) are confirmed as a yellowish, opaque, fine-grained pseudomorph after six-sided, tabular crystals (most probably former arisite crystals because partial pseudomorphs have been observed on other specimens); the pseudomorphs are PXRD- and EDS-analysed.
Colour photo to be made and uploaded.

- Possibly britholite-(La) on an etched/altered sazhinite-(Ce)
(see also

- Calcioancylite-(Ce), La-rich, was found to form colourless, pseudo-octahedral crystals (SXRD- and EDS-analysed; collection Richard Bayerl). This is a new morphological type distinct from the usually tabular material.
SEM photo:
Colour photo to be made and uploaded.

- Unnamed Fe-analogue of zakharovite: SEM photos uploaded:
Colour photo to be made and uploaded.

- Unnamed (Sazhinite-related mineral I)
EDS analyses of crystal from three SXRD-different specimens consistently give a Na-La-silicate with minor Ce (Nd is negligible). One sample additionally contained trace amounts of Th.
Photo captions have been updated: (new SEM child photo: (new SEM child photo: (new SEM child photos:

- Unnamed (Sazhinite-related mineral II)
EDS analyses of a crystal from one SXRD-analysed specimen also gives a Na-La-silicate with minor Ce (Nd is negligible).
Na, La and Ce contents are similar to those in Unnamed (Sazhinite-related mineral I), but the Si-content is a bit lower.
Photo caption has been updated: (new SEM child photo:

- Fluorapophyllite-(K)
Previously confirmed by a crystal-structure refinement, now also confirmed by EDS for two different specimens (large pale yellowish - - and small colourless crystals both terminated by the {001} face). Thin outer layers of the latter ( contain minor La and Ce:

Other newly uploaded SEM photos:

- Hilairite

- Labuntsovite supergroup:

- Quartz

- Villiaumite (on the ‘Unnamed (Sazhinite-related mineral II)’)

- zoned (Th!) sazhinite-(Ce)

- prismatic(!) fluorite
Uwe Kolitsch March 10, 2015 05:05PM
More photos:

Colour photo of the labuntsovite-supergroup specimen:

Colour photo of the bastnäsite-(Ce)-bastnäsite-(La) pseudomorphs:
Uwe Kolitsch March 29, 2016 01:17PM
More photos:

Yellowish(!) calcite

Grey-pink fluorapatite

Apophyllite as very small crystals sprinkled on natrolite
Uwe Kolitsch June 23, 2016 03:04PM
New publication on new finds from Aris:
Blaß, G., Kolitsch, U., Tremmel, G., Esche, J. (2016): Neue Mineralienfunde aus den Phonolithbrüchen von Aris in Namibia. Mineralien-Welt 27 (4), 48-60 (in German).

The article, which has many photos and also an English abstract, describes:
a) a brown rock-forming amphibole, clinoptilolite-Na, an unnamed kanemite-related mineral (“dehydrated kanemite”), kozoite-(La), the unnamed Ce-analogue of kozoite-(La) and -(Nd) (well known as a synthetic compound), löllingite, lovdarite, marshallsussmanite, todorokite, troilite and vinogradovite.
b) very aesthetic „star-shaped” arisite-(La) and-(Ce) crystals, bastnäsite-(Ce) and bastnäsite-(La), ferroceladonite, fluorapophyllite-(K), fluorite, kenyaite, quartz, sazhinite-(La), steacyite and turkestanite.

Lovdarite is the first Be mineral to be confirmed from Aris.

Will update pages.
Uwe Kolitsch June 29, 2016 12:09PM
Some colour and SEM photos of specimens described in the above article uploaded.
Joachim Esche November 09, 2017 02:04PM
Fluorapophyllite-K with very strange and unusual morphology

The identity of this specimen was confirmed by microRaman-analysis by Erica Bittarello, Alessandra Marengo and Marco E. Ciriotti – University of Turin (Italy) as apophyllite-K, probably fluorapophyllite-K. Aris is rich in F, so fluorapophyllite-K may be the correct identification.

I have seen several specimens, with wrong or UK-labels which look very similar to this piece. Please check your specimens.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 11/09/2017 02:07PM by Joachim Esche.
Guenter Blass November 09, 2017 03:10PM
Here in addition a Fluorapophyllite-K sample from Gerd Tremmel, which I examined by EDS.

EDX 1:
27.2 At.% F, 1.7% Na, 0.3% Al, 55.7% Si, 2.1% K, 12.8% Ca, 0.2% Ce
EDX 2:
23 At.% F, 1.2% Na, 56% Si, 3.4% K, 16.4% Ca

Günter Blaß

Foto: Fred Kruijen

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