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GeneralCollected With Your Dirty Hands

30th May 2016 17:58 BSTMatt Courville

Hi out there, I was hoping to start a thread on your favourite 'self-collected' minerals out in the field. I would like to include anything common, but that may also have something exceptional, exciting, and sentimental that might be conveyed. Any size, any quality, but one that you may be extremely fond of (one of many I'm sure). Feel free to include anything that may just have a generalized area described for hidden spots, as so many of the best finds are simply left un-posted for obvious reasons;)

Despite the mediocre photo here is one that I was quite happy to find, given that it was unlike any other listed at the locality:

Beryl - from The Beryl Pit, Ontario, Canada


30th May 2016 19:23 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

I had a pretty nice titanite from bear lake and a interesting corundum from logan occurence that are now out of my collection. I regret selling both.

30th May 2016 22:04 BSTJamison K. Brizendine Expert

FYI, there was an old thread on this subject:,6,240944,page=16

30th May 2016 23:11 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

I found this 2.5 cm xl of Struverite on cleavelandite druse matrix occasionally on dumps of Pit#1 of Volodarsk-Volynskii in beginning of May 1987. Before wasing after return in Moscow, I supposed that this was octahedral crystal of fluorite. All it holes were filled with reddish hematite mud, so the octahedron seems complete and compact. After washing it became clear, that this is complex twin of Struverite crystals.

V.I. Stepanov ordered me to bring it to Fersman Mineralogical Museum and ask for it what I want. Such way I received my the first 3.5 cm crystal of plumbomicrolite.

This photo of the specimen

was made by A.A. Evseev in the showcase of FMM

Every my visit in FMM I come to see this specimen. Probably this was the most happy of my finds. I found it as it is, without any hammer impact.

30th May 2016 23:30 BSTBob Harman

I agree with Jamison. The old thread, "FAVORITE SELF-COLLECTED SPECIMENS" has been available for over 5 years with more than 10 pages chock full of neat pix of self-collected specimens. Personally I would consider merging this thread with the previous one. Just a little time spent searching on the website yeilds just what you were looking for without starting new duplicated threads that do nothing more than confuse further users. CHEERS.....BOB

31st May 2016 12:53 BSTMatt Courville

Bob, this was simply meant to be a fun and simple gesture - why not start a whole new thread? What confusion - post in both threads if you wish, ignore one if you wish. Shooting-down someone's post without contributing one thing can be considered a bit rude. I hope it doesn't merge, and I hope it evolves into something of its own for others to enjoy.

31st May 2016 15:38 BSTSteven Kuitems Expert

Matt, you could rename this new thread "Personally collected specimens" since none that I know self-collect themselves.

Yes, I do like the revival of this topic.


31st May 2016 17:39 BSTTimothy Greenland

This obsessive objection to the use of the clear phrase "self-collected specimen" makes me wonder what we should make of the phrase "self-made man"? A case of masculine parthenogenesis???



31st May 2016 18:53 BSTTony Albini

Hi guys,

Any thing that I collected at a mine, prospect, etc. I use the term "field collected". Regards, Tony

31st May 2016 19:15 BSTSteven Kuitems Expert

I like that approach also Tony.

31st May 2016 19:37 BSTMatt Courville

Steve I believe I know what you had meant ;) I'd love to see more self-collected, field collected, and personally collected specimens from anyone. ....but a mineral that might collect itself would certainly be the 'icing on the cake'

I will humbly try and get back on subject with this one smokey quartz from the area of Greely, Ontario, Canada :

Overall Dimensions: (5 cm x 3 cm x 2 cm) for perspective

Imperfect pictures of these(such as mine) make one believe that there is all sorts of imperfections in these crystals, while most is natural other than the tip here. I think that I can be forgiven for appreciating it so much though, being that I removed a seemingly impossible amount of limestone with just a small sledge hammer and chiesel to get to it. There was sweat, there was blood(really), and there was likely some nearby BBQ-ers that wondered what the heck all the banging around was on a nice sunday.

For those familiar with the as of now 'off-limits' Grant Quarry, these can get absolutely fantastic. Luckily this one came out of a very large boulder which was placed nearby the road at some point.



31st May 2016 19:53 BSTDoug Schonewald


I did a search using "Favorite Self-Collected" and ALL POSTS and got nothing. Then I went to Jamison's post and clicked on the link. It took me right to the thread. There has been no activity on that thread for well over a year. The search methodology I used 'should' have found it but there is either a glitch, an auto-archive feature that makes older posts unsearchable, or something else is wrong. I wouldn't worry about it. I like new threads and dislike posting on threads that are years old and haven't had any activity for ages.

A couple of thoughts from a 'non-professional':

All specimens were field-collected, but not necessarily by the one who possesses the specimen. One of the first things I look at on photos is if the specimen was personally collected or purchased. Not that one is preferable or better than the other, but there is much satisfaction in finding that nice specimen yourself. It is also satisfying to know that with hard work great stuff is still being found without traveling to the 4-corners of the earth. Granted you are not likely to build a great collection if the only thing you include are self-collected specimens. For some that really matters, for others it doesn't.

There is something to be said for those that increase the knowledge of their local area, even if the specimens are not impressive. It is exciting for me to find specimens of minerals that were unknown from my area, even if they are as common as calcite or gypsum.

Here is one of my favorite self-collected pieces. The photo is not great, but good enough for now until I can afford better equipment. I do call it "The Micro Crystal Cave", since it reminds me of the real Crystal Cave. As near as I can tell a very unusual habit in my area.

31st May 2016 19:54 BSTPhil M. Belley Expert

Matt, some dimensions would be useful. Could be 2 mm for all we know!

31st May 2016 23:51 BSTMatt Courville

Douglas I love it(tu) It could be used for a Star Wars film! Thanks Phil, the dimensions were overlooked:)-D

1st Jun 2016 00:52 BSTGuy Davis (2)

I discovered this quartz plate crystal side up weathering out of a hillside about 75 yards from where I was working west of Baltimore, Maryland. A closer look at the root mass of an upturned tree directly upslope turned up handfuls of loose water clear points and small clusters and led to the discovery of one of those small and super localized mineral localities that is my little secret.

11 7/8 inches at widest point. Cheers

2nd Jun 2016 16:22 BSTDan Costian

Thanks a lot, Matt for opening this thread, I am very glad to participate.

Here is my first, radial crystals of wollastonite self-collected as a loose boulder in the proximity of Balvanyos in the Harghita Mountains, Harghita County, Romania. Pretty large, 10.3 cm.

2nd Jun 2016 21:37 BSTPeter Andresen Expert

No surprise finding this sample was a thrill, knowing at the moment it was at least one new mineral, later showing there was two!

Thanks for starting a field-collecting-fun thread again! Older favourites have already been posted, but here I feel free to post what ever I get out of the hard mountains or dirty dumps. :)-D

2nd Jun 2016 21:45 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

I'm quite proud of this green stuff - from Darai-Pioz. It was quite a hard thing to get to this very remote place in Tajikistan, but when you finally cross the Darai-Pioz "thin"-but-fast flowing stream then its kind of an entering a dream-land: massive amounts of rocks I've never seen before, with plenty of strange minerals and strange colours... I was quite shocked with the amount of this turkestanite (at least EDS showed it to be exactly this mineral) and the size of crystals.

2nd Jun 2016 21:49 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

No doubt this hexaniobate specimen is a fun, Peter ;-) And the colour of the stuff is also nice. This again reminds me my another pick at Darai-Pioz, a then unknown greenish prism, now laptevite-(Ce)...

3rd Jun 2016 13:14 BSTMatt Courville

Thanks for posting everyone. This thread is evolving into what I had hoped for with exciting, but not necessarily museum specimens. Peter and Lukasz - I love the photos of your completely new mineral finds. This would be the 'top of the mountain' for me if I ever found one! Lukasz, your Polish flag reminded me of my trip to Poland a few years back (my wife is from Poland) and it made me think of the absolutely incredible Wieliczka Mine we visited that contains all of the salt carvings.Worthy of a 'google search' at the least;)

I will post today two side-by-side photos of beryl for comparison. One is hideous-looking beryl crystal, possibly due to the radioactives found at the site, while the other small, translucent piece of beautiful aquamarine beryl. Both are found at my go-to spot - the Beryl Pit, Ontario. I find it amazing how such variety can happen in nature, at the same site meters apart.




3rd Jun 2016 15:20 BSTDan Costian

Calcite concretions with sparse chalcopyrite crystals over quartz.

Self-collected from Rodna, Rodna Mtn, Bistrița-Năsăud Co., Romania.

3rd Jun 2016 16:08 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Gosh, the latter beryl is rather huge, Matt! We have some beryls in Poland, but they're usually not very big. I would be happy with finding a heliodor somewhere. Regarding Wieliczka - yes, its kind of fun to walk on halite and have halite above and everywhere around (-; And my laptevite-(Ce) find...well, I think Darai-Pioz is very productive of new minerals and its quite easy to pick someting new without even knowing that; it was a pity for me not to recognize that it was a new stuff at that time; nevertheless, a lot of time, work, and people are usually needed to approve it...

4th Jun 2016 15:37 BSTDan Costian

Nodular collophane (carbonate-rich apatite), self-collected at N Sulfur River, Ladonia, Fannin County, Texas. This is a well-known (by paleontologists) area, rich in fossils where collophane was formed from the original bones that had been replaced by it.

5th Jun 2016 15:40 BSTDan Costian

Elongated oval-shaped concretion/floater of cubic pyrite with nice patina.

Self-collected from TXI Cement quarry, Midlothian, Ellis Co., Texas/

5th Jun 2016 16:05 BSTDoug Schonewald

Albite-Anorthite 'spear' formed of pseudo-cubic crystals of albite-anorthite (unanalyzed) in a basalt vug. The 'spear' is very small, probably about 1-1.5 mm.

Self-collected from Columbia Flood Basalts at the South End of Lake Lenore in central Washington state.

5th Jun 2016 20:48 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert - Manganoneptunite in ussingite, from a small pit nearby the Umbozero mine. Self-collected during a bad, bad, foggy weather...

6th Jun 2016 16:05 BSTDan Costian

This is an ugly white-gray satin spar of calcite self-collected from TXI Cement quarry, Midlothian, Ellis Co., Texas.

But if you look at the close-up you'll see a second generation of calcite hexagonal crystals grown upon and some sparse pyrite.

Have fun!

6th Jun 2016 20:56 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Little cuties ;-)

10th Jun 2016 02:50 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

An etched group of hemimorphite with a doubly terminated crystal... collected by my dirty hands on New Years Day 2016 :)-D

12th Jun 2016 17:42 BSTDan Costian

Crystals of halite colored pink/purple due to inclusions of bacterial debris – Halo bacterium.

Self-collected in the Salina Praid, Praid, Harghita Co., Romania.

12th Jun 2016 19:29 BSTRyan Allen

My favorite small piece of collected kyanite from this year. From canoe river area BC Canada


12th Jun 2016 22:13 BSTDoug Schonewald

From yesterday. It was a good day. Lots of cool stuff.

Unidentified acicular crystals in basalt vugs (likely aragonite but could be one of the zeolite group or something else)

Close up of clear acicular crystals (appear like mesolite but not identified)


Close-up of yellowish acicular crystal (possibly aragonite or iron-stained zeolite)


Had lots of fun and only hit my finger once breaking rocks

Cheers - Doug

12th Jun 2016 23:09 BSTJim Robison

Doug Been quite a while since I've had a piece of mesolite in my hands, but my memory tells me that it usually has a flat termination, and the individual crystals are not tapered. I'd guess aragonite, and a small piece and some acid should quickly answer that. I've seen a lot of aragonite with that habit, not nearly so much for calcite.

12th Jun 2016 23:39 BSTDoug Schonewald

thanks Jim. Got two photos of the same cluster but the other is also tapered and terminated with points. haven't had time to test them at all and aragonite is the most likely in my area I am sure (though it is unrecorded here it is still more likely than a zeolite). Edited the first photo so both pics are there and corrected to caption

15th Jun 2016 16:52 BSTDan Costian

Black spots of bannisterite over veined pyroxmangite. Self-collected at Iacobeni, Romania.

15th Jun 2016 22:44 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Dan, I kinda jealous of your visit at Iacobeni visit! I'm curious about this deposit for a while, since I saw the very crazy list of minerals; do you know anything about argutite occurrence in Arschitza? This sounds very strange to me, and the mineral is exceedingly rare... I once visited north Romania (in 2000 or 2001) but we had no time to collect anything, even at Cavnic :-( Few years ago I was climbing the Chernohora Mts. and when visiting a museum (forgot the name of the town) in Ukraine I saw a rhodonite sample from a strange locality at the UKR/ROM border. I'm pretty sure this Mn metamorphic location must be interesting and possibly similar to Iacobeni (?).

15th Jun 2016 22:50 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Talking about minerals starting with "b", here's my brannerite from a rather remote area in Polish Sudety (Sudetes) Mts.:

The secondaries were analyzed by a friend of mine, but as far as I remember there were no revelations about this.

16th Jun 2016 01:41 BSTDan Costian

Łukasz, Romania it's my original country but I left it for good and moved to the US in 2001.

I collected the specimen decades ago when I was not yet hooked in mineral collecting. The miracle occurred in the US.

16th Jun 2016 03:28 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager Self-collected, self-cut, self-polished...:-) I almost broke own neck that day on Takhtarvumchorr slope... This stone, occasional xl of aenigmatite and a bag of keldyshite "ore" were my trophy that time.

16th Jun 2016 15:11 BSTDan Costian

Wow! Pavel, it looks like vegetal cells.

16th Jun 2016 16:06 BSTSpencer Ivan Mather

About 85% of my large collection of minerals are self collected in the field, I started in 1968 while working at a quarry in Kragero, Norway, and since then my collection comprises 7,593 specimens..


16th Jun 2016 23:28 BSTjeff yadunno


17th Jun 2016 02:03 BSTDoug Schonewald

Collected today:


FOV - ~5.0 mm

17th Jun 2016 13:43 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Pavel, isn't your piece the tinguaite rock?

17th Jun 2016 14:17 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This is so call "turtle tinguaite" what is stated in the description below these pictures.;-)

17th Jun 2016 15:35 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Thanks ;-) Quite characteristic rock.

17th Jun 2016 15:40 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Very nice aragonite, Doug! I found similar groups, though more flat, on serpentinite close to a rodingite lens, but I've taken just a close-up photo:

17th Jun 2016 15:48 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

I was quite happy collecting this combo: - this has blue ilsemannite with white rostite; SEM imaging also revealed tiny blades of molybdite and an unspecified Cu sulphate. It was quite hard to get to the site - Kukhi-Malik, Yagnob river basin, Tajikistan - the site is at mountain slopes high above the valley and it is very hot during day, so we had to start climbing at ca 3 a.m. The coal fires at this site (which is on the opposite bank than more famous Ravat site - ravatite) are likely known since (at least) the Alexander of Macedonia; the coal was never exploited, but local people collected fire-derived alums and they tend to treat the site (there is a cave within country rocks that likely formed due to burnout; cave walls are covered in red, flowing sulphur; very hot) as a kind of "spa" (a belief of anti-rheumatical influence of the site, I think). The ilsemannite accumulation was that vast that I though it might be much more common chalcanthite.

20th Jun 2016 00:24 BSTDan Costian

Alveolar hematite left after the clay was weathered out of a septarian nodule where the cracks had been infiltrated with hematite.

From Dallas, TX. Quite a large specimen (12.3 x 6.1 cm).

20th Jun 2016 00:32 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Whoa, looks great! Didn't know Dallas has its own minerals (-:

20th Jun 2016 00:35 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Well, I'll change the "size" a "little" bit: - these tinies of the tinies include an interesting micro-pyroxene, that is diopside with at least 25 mol% kushiroite (CaAlAlSiO6) component. The rock itself is not very pretty and looks like an orange sponge (-;

20th Jun 2016 02:01 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


At the Hilltop Mine in the Chiricahua Mts. in SE Arizona I collected often. Just had a friend who tried to go up a couple of days ago and said the road now has a locked gate on it. Darn shame!!

Used to collect galena in the dumps and in some when split they had pockets of absolutely wonderful anglesite crystals. Still some of my favorite self collected specimens.

20th Jun 2016 14:21 BSTAndrew Debnam

The specimen comes to mind when I think of dirty. Collected this past May- I was covered in muck and the black flies were in season and biting me everywhere.

20th Jun 2016 14:59 BSTDan Costian

Łukasz Kruszewski Wrote:


> Whoa, looks great! Didn't know Dallas has its own

> minerals (-:

Thank you, Łukasz, and here is a specimen from the same area and of similar nature but this time the clay was only partially weathered.

The exposure made better visible the intricacies of the septa (walls of calcite dividing the mudstone deposited inside the walls). The septarian nodule was found at Kamp Ranch, Eagle Ford Formation, SW of Dallas. Size 25.2 cm.

20th Jun 2016 16:26 BSTMatt Courville

Although technically speaking I only photographed, here are some recent picts of my adventure up Cascade mountain in Banff to the Upper Bankhead anthracite coal mine ruins. The photo of the lookout view had me actually standing on a gigantic pile of coal from 100 years ago. It was a bit terrifying as you got close to the edge - and it's an official lookout point, but I would be surprised if anyone was here in over a week. I added larger/more picts on my homepage. The coal I was looking at was as 'dirty' as it can get!




20th Jun 2016 21:57 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Coal is dirty, indeed, but coal (especially anthracite) may trigger formation of some interesting and "less dirty" (-; minerals; just as an example - a self-picked specimen with boussingaultite & metavoltine:

21st Jun 2016 09:08 BSTPeter Andresen Expert

Last saturdays trip to Johs Nilsen quarry, Tvedalen, was a nice one - here is the less interesting samples not dirty anymore; big lumps of yellow cancrinite, some with arsenopyrite/löllingite, galena and sphalerite - all massive and a couple of samples with orange chiavennite... The more interesting stuff still needs to be cleaned, and analysed - rich mass of some REE-mineral, mixed with a parisite/bastnäsite mineral in small "hexagonal barrels", plenty of cavities with the same barrels (lots of zonations) together with ancylite goup minera(s) in nice crystals with colours from almost white transparent, pink to yellow, a secondary platy bastnäsite, and some white needel like crystals - probably aegirine, but not sure about that...

Largest lump is about 12 x 10 x 8 cm.

21st Jun 2016 13:03 BSTMatt Courville

Peter, I really like these types of photos because they show people what to actually expect when out collecting. I'm sure that there are many young potential rockhounds that get discouraged when they don't instantly find an amazing crystal specimen, and don't have a clue about what context or associated rocks are attached often.

21st Jun 2016 23:05 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Peter - you're living in a really "mineral-hot" area! (-; Wish you some more new polyniobates (-;

Rolf - a great example of anglesite, and a very pure crystal. You got me remembered by Toussit yellowish anglesite, which somehow got lost somewhere... and this also reminds me times when the number of mineral- (not jewelry-) selling shops in Poland were full of interesting specimens, inluding sulphur-yellow Moroccoan anglesite(s).

22nd Jun 2016 04:15 BSTAndrew Debnam

Titanite crystals collected in a muddy trench four feet down. It took quite some time and sweat to get the specimen to separate from the country rock.

22nd Jun 2016 12:57 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Near our home is a great gypsum collecting area but this piece is probably my favorite self collected one. It is a super clear crystal but the bonus is that it is on matrix. It is in a 2x2 inch perky for size.

22nd Jun 2016 14:19 BSTAndrew Debnam

looks to be "optically" clear-very nice

22nd Jun 2016 14:52 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Marvellous titanite, Andrew! Undoubtely worth this sweaty work. Where does it come from?

22nd Jun 2016 15:10 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hi Lukasz, it comes from the Miller Property which is a calcite vein dike system in north eastern Ontario, Canada. About a three hour drive from Toronto Ontario. This whole area just prior to 1900 was explored and mined for Fluorapatite. The Mineralogical Record July-August 1982 has good article on the area. It mentions some truly huge specimens found in the area in the 1890's- they include a 300kg Fluorapatite crystal, and a 30cm Zircon and a 65x17x17cm 28kg Titanite which is in the Mineralogical museum of Harvard university.

This specimen was found at this locality in the area


22nd Jun 2016 15:18 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

28 kg titanite.... omg...sounds like a pegmatitic locality, which is not (?) :-)

22nd Jun 2016 15:40 BSTAndrew Debnam

The general description of the area is metamorphosed sedimentary rocks intruded by a number of plutonic rocks over 950 million years ago. Their is some disagreement as to when and how the calcite dikes were emplaced. The minerals in the dikes are generally related to the composition of the enclosing rocks. The whole area is part of the Precambrian Grenville province, a very complex area. Like a pegmatite these calcite veins can contain some very large crystals. Over time the acid soil leaches away the calcite and exposes the crystals.


22nd Jun 2016 15:48 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

I collected this bixbyite from the old Beryllium Virgin claim on the rim of Paramount Canyon in Sierra Co., New Mexico on Sunday, June 19th, 2016.

22nd Jun 2016 17:33 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert

Thanks for the explanation, Andrew. Its good to know such locality exists.

22nd Jun 2016 17:37 BSTŁukasz Kruszewski Expert


This is a supposed ikranite, among eudialyte sensu stricto, found at the slopes of Mt. Eveslogchorr, near from the "astrophyllite deposit" (Astrofillitovye Ushcheliye). PXRD confirms it is an eudialytoid, and EDS confirms the chemistry that would fit ikranite; but no EPMA analysis was done.

22nd Jun 2016 20:46 BSTDave Owen

Rolf; Now you have me curious I may have to whack on a few of my galena nodules from there. That area has always been one of my favorite localities to collect by mountain bike. It has washed out so bad up there the road was pretty much gone in places anyway.

23rd Jun 2016 17:04 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


This one fits in three different threads. The one I chose here is self collected from the Hilltop Mine in SE Arizona. It also fits in the favorite of today category and odd crystal habit category since it has the odd growth on the crystals.

Only one like this I have found in many collecting trips to the mine.

23rd Jun 2016 17:08 BSTDan Costian

To continue the series of "marvels" in the Dallas area, here are pyrite crystals on/in a round concretion/nodule of shale.

Self-collected on I-30 & Belt Line Road roadcut, Grand Prairie, Dallas Co., Texas.

25th Jun 2016 20:41 BSTjeff yadunno



26th Jun 2016 00:36 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert



This is an odd little piece. I was helping a geologist friend do a sampling trip into the bottom of the Burro Pit of the Johnson Mine in SE Arizona. They had hit a mineralized area with odd things right at the bottom of the pit. This piece is white quartz that had pockets with free standing molybdenite crystals that were coated by a clear, bubbly chalcedony. Made for an unusual piece. The first photo shows some reflections coming from the crystals inside the chalcedony that makes it look golden. The second photo you can see in the top crystal the nice molybdenite inside the chalcedony.

26th Jun 2016 23:15 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Plucked this clear, nicely terminated quartz with some "sidecar" crystals from a pocket recently 7.2cm

26th Jun 2016 23:19 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A 2.1cm octahedral spinel crystal perched nicely on top of orange calcite matrix. Hammered out of a large rock. The specimen popped out as seen. No further trimming required.

Personally collected May18,2016

27th Jun 2016 03:23 BSTMatt Courville

Wow, some very nice finds John(tu) Here are some of the tremolite crystals which I found this past May long weekend at Grace Lake locality Ontario. It must have been a holiday get-together for the blackflies as well because everywhere I looked they were there in the millions having a good time:-S


27th Jun 2016 19:35 BSTMatt Ciranni

Jeff Yadunno, What minerals do you have there? Hard to tell without seeing a label, but the top looks like Augite and the bottom, some kind of potassium feldspar (I'm guessing?) Real nice finds though.

29th Jun 2016 11:36 BSTjeff yadunno

yes, i believe that is what they are

i was guessing augite or hornblende based on the list of minerals found at that locality

i found the feldspar earlier this summer when i met up with Tom and Rachelle Lovesy

whom i met on my first trip out there... they pointed me in the right direction and helped me to

find my best apatite and best titanite(with 3 apatite sticking out of it)

there were lots of those doubly terminated feldspars in the trench we dug that day

the feldspar at that location has flecks which reflect like little rainbows with the right lighting

i am told there are only a couple places in the world where the feldspar has that feature.

i will post a pic later.. sun isnt up enough yet...

29th Jun 2016 12:32 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A tabular 3.5cm Forsterite crystal with druse spinel along base on calcite matrix

29th Jun 2016 12:42 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A inky blue fluorapatite crystal unusually well formed for this locality that I hammered out of a large calcite boulder on site

xl= 4.2cm

29th Jun 2016 23:52 BSTjeff yadunno

i still couldnt get it to really pop

rainbow spots look white



i will continue to try to get a better pic of the effect...

they remind me of pork chops


all collected with dirty hands of course

3rd Jul 2016 20:38 BSTjeff yadunno


montrose (in front of the lowes)


ackerman (at the end of the little road that leads to the stream)

couldnt get to the mine because of all the poison ivy

3rd Jul 2016 22:47 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


There is a tiny prospect about 15 miles up a big wash in our area. When I first visited the location there was nothing listed on mindat for the mine. Over about 30 years I have collected a lot at this small spot and have pretty well identified what can be found there. Just about all micro, the fornacite is a favorite to self collect.

3rd Jul 2016 23:25 BSTjeff yadunno



4th Jul 2016 04:36 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

I've never been to ackerman, but i know it's known for its arsenopyrite xls. You piece looks much like garnet and epidote which likely s from marmoraton iron mine. Stick a magnet on it, there is likely magnetite as well, the main ore that was mined.

4th Jul 2016 11:23 BSTjeff yadunno

could be... it is nearby

it is from a pile of rip rap used on the banks of the stream and a little pile at the end of the "road"

5th Jul 2016 05:23 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

That'd be a better title or description than "ackerman".

5th Jul 2016 07:25 BSTDale Foster Expert

I found this specimen in May 2016:

In these ancient surface workings that lie in the Unity Wood Mine sett:

5th Jul 2016 12:53 BSTMatt Courville

I love the site photo Dale. In Ontario we have similar overgrown areas, and if you are lucky to have found a mine that no-one else has for many years it is quite a treat!

I'm really appreciating all of the 'realistic finds' that are being posted here - some of which are very impressive to have been 'self-collected'(tu)

5th Jul 2016 14:20 BSTDale Foster Expert

Hi Matt,

These workings date back at least 200 years and represent surface mining on the outcrop of a lode.

Despite being looked over by generations of collectors these old workings still yield decent specimens to anyone who is willing to spend the time looking carefully.

This is a specimen I found at the lower end of the workings on a pleasant morning in early March this year whilst walking my dog:

5th Jul 2016 14:24 BSTDale Foster Expert

Going from ancient Cornish workings to a relatively recently abandoned site in South Africa, Rooiberg A Mine:

A visit in April 2016 to this site yielded these pieces:

5th Jul 2016 18:07 BSTAndrew Debnam

A recent find this past month. Quite aesthetic in person and somewhat unique (my biased opinion) for the Bancroft area. Smoky Quartz on a crystalline Tremolite-Disopside matrix. Tree roots and acid soil have etched away carbonates.

6th Jul 2016 12:56 BSTMatt Courville


This is a recent find while visiting the Adirondack high-peaks near Lake Placid. The trip was centered around hiking, but I made a point to 'hunt' for some labradorite with schiller in the area. It is tough to find large amounts, and requires some sunlight/water to get the effect - but I felt that it was well worth the work. The whole region is just full of anorthite, with some diopside and garnet here and there.


6th Jul 2016 15:04 BSTAndrew Debnam

Matt, are you going to polish or tumble any of these pieces? I know some polished cabs would be quite nice.


6th Jul 2016 15:23 BSTMatt Courville

Hi Andrew, I have a dual-collection going on now: I keep some of my finds as raw mineral pieces, and others for actual lapidary work in the OLMC here in Ottawa. I usually free-form pieces for my wife to do some wire/necklaces, and I have one piece which turned-out quite nice. Perhaps one day I'll photograph the pieces which I self-collected and then polished, and add them as photos under 'others' here on mindat.


12th Jul 2016 14:20 BSTAndrew Debnam

An unusual Feldspar I collected this past weekend. I have not found anything similar from this locality before, a curiosity. I took this of the wall on a small cavity. The weathered Feldspar is covered with thousands of small gemmy Titanites all around the base and sides. The Titanites are glossy brown-red and are gem like in appearance. They range in from 1-4 mm. It was dirty as well that day, pouring rain into the muddy trenches

15th Jul 2016 17:46 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

This specimen was collected underground at the Macy Mine (Hillsboro District, Sierra Co., New Mexico) with Jerry Cone in summer of 2015. I was after some of the larger calcite that can be found in the lower levels of the mine. I had a piece of rock that looked like it had nice calcite inside and began looking for an anvil stone nearby. Quickly finding one, I gave one whack, but the anvil broke instead of my "choice" rock. I picked up the broken anvil to find pristine clusters of 1-2 mm arsenatian vanadinite crystals, one of the best finds that trip!

17th Jul 2016 16:53 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


This piece has a little story.

It comes from 1887 Bisbee, when overburden was used to build a rail road bed near Tombstone. We discovered this a number of years ago and dug in a few places of the old track, long abandoned and a few places had very nice specimens. Great part is this has been in the ground since 1887 and all the overburden from the mines in Bisbee is long gone.

Nicest hemimorphite I have self collected.

18th Jul 2016 14:49 BSTjeff yadunno

grace lake road cut


18th Jul 2016 17:11 BSTJason Evans

I have a few minerals which I collected but the majority of my collection are ones I have purchased, Here is one of my most prized self collected minerals.

18th Jul 2016 18:52 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Grossular from a secret locality in Quebec 4 cm x 3 cm x 3 cm

Largest Crystal Size: 9 mm. Collected April,2016

18th Jul 2016 19:39 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Gemmy, stepped complete single fluorite crystal 1.6cm on calcite matrix which I collected from the Arnprior Ontario area where fluorite crystals are very rare. May,2016

20th Jul 2016 18:03 BSTMatt Courville


Here is one that I just submitted and collected from the Miller Property, near Lake Clear Ontario. A large complete titanite crystal found settled at the base of one of the many calcite veins which have dissolved over time.(4.5cm at it's widest point)

It was a bit awkward to dig-out from an elevated crevice filled with other apatites. I left the majority of the apatites at the spot for others to enjoy, as I need to save some room in my shed and shelves.:-D

20th Jul 2016 20:11 BSTJason Evans

Here is one that I found on my first ever field trip back in the 90's. it is so sparkly and gemmy but it's hard to see that in the photo. I still very clearly remember how excited I was when I found it, even if it is just calcite! it was in a cavity in a big chunk of limestone. I called out to the other group members, who probably thought I had found something really interesting. One guy with a sledge hammer took a swing at it and bust it open and I grabbed this bit, I'm not sure if anyone else took any.

20th Jul 2016 21:20 BSTDennis Tryon

Collected from the Ray Mine, Arizona at a Tucson Gem and Mineral field trip.

20th Jul 2016 22:50 BSTAndrew Debnam

Dennis, Jason, Matt- I like them all. This is the first Rutile I have ever found and was able to add to the locality.

A small cluster of crude Feldspar with 1-4 mm slender Rutile crystals. The crystals have a bright metallic lustre (which is why I picked this up) but under the right light angle are a cherry-blood red colour (transparent). Crystal faces on the Rutile exhibit striations along the long axis.

21st Jul 2016 08:52 BSTDale Foster Expert


A cracking small specimen of crystallised Cassiterite, collected on the 17th July 2016 from dumps at Trevaunance Mine, roughly 50 metres to the north of where Jason found his specimen last year.

Just goes to show there is still nice material out there to collect if you put in the time.

21st Jul 2016 10:55 BSTJason Evans

That is very nice indeed Dale! I'm hoping to get up there again, maybe after the summer holidays.

21st Jul 2016 13:35 BSTVincent Rigatti


Found this interesting specimen on a hike on London Mountain CO. The portion with azurite covers about 3x2 cm. and lines small surface pockets on the specimen. Also some malachite present. I was excited to find this as not a lot of azurite in our state.

21st Jul 2016 14:01 BSTjeff yadunno

came back to find one of my bananas plants knocked over by raccoons

so here is one of the pieces i found with a banana plant background


21st Jul 2016 14:04 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hello Jeff, where is this from?

21st Jul 2016 14:05 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A 9cm nicely terminated quartz crystal right out of the earth (photographed with my iPhone before cleaning) from the Lyndhurst ON. area.

21st Jul 2016 14:12 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Heavily hematite included amethyst with xls to 3cm collected from Bill's old Amethyst Mine inThunder Bay

21st Jul 2016 19:38 BSTJason Evans

What else do you do when your waiting for a fish to bite, on a beach full of pebbles in Dorset? look for interesting pebbles of course! I found this one which had a small vug containing yellow botryoidal chalcedony.

21st Jul 2016 21:20 BSTjeff yadunno

pm'd you


21st Jul 2016 23:46 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A 7.7cm high fluorapatite crystal fresh from the earth which I collected from Comet Mine near Wakefield, Quebec

21st Jul 2016 23:59 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Cubo-octohedral crystals on baryte and fluorite matrix which I collected at the now closed famous Rogers Mine

8.5cm across largest xl 3cm

15th Aug 2016 16:12 BSTMatt Courville

Some incredibly nice contributions lately(tu) Here I have some almandine garnets from the Ruby Mine near the Lower Madawaska river , Ontario where people like to go whitewater cayaking. The site requires a nice hike-in past some ponds and small streams. I chose to post the much scarcer gemmy specimens, but there is plenty of collecting potential here if you don't mind less gemmy garnets.

15th Aug 2016 19:36 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Nice Matt. I haven't seen material from that loc.

Here's a recent find from the Lyndhurst area better known for quartz. This a twinned calcite that is pinkish golden and translucent with opaque white secondary overgrowth

The twinning can be better seen here:

15th Aug 2016 20:32 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hey Matt, nice finds and thanks for sharing the location as well. In keeping with Garnet theme and full disclosure of locality (non secret) here are some Garnet specimens I recently found at the HWY 620 road cuts.

15th Aug 2016 22:23 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Grossular again... 2.5 x 2 x1.5cm from a secret locality in Quebec (when I'm taken to a locality that I did not find myself and the person who takes me there asks me not to reveal the location I,of course, abide by their wishes).... collected with not so dirty hands.

16th Aug 2016 01:42 BSTSean

Wow, John. Your friend is lucky to have a secret spot to find Grossular. I wish I found Grossular, like this one, for myself.

Anyway, here's a Apatite that I found at the Schickler Fluorite Occurrence.

19th Aug 2016 13:18 BSTMatt Courville

Nice apatite Nthingu. I just had a chance to visit this site this past spring. The massive fluorite potential is terrific, and you can even find some small titanites if you are lucky;)


19th Aug 2016 15:33 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Thx Nthingu....

Here's a parallel growth grouping of diopside crystals ( 5cm high) I found with my friend but this locality he was Ok with making public.There may still be specimens for the finding in this roadcut.

19th Aug 2016 15:51 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Here's another new locality on Mindat, a scapolite occurrence which also has nice dioxide ( haha. Make that DIOPSIDE) crystals

This scapolite crystal = 5cm

20th Aug 2016 06:08 BSTVolkmar Stingl

John Montgomery Wrote:


> Here's another new locality on Mindat, a scapolite

> occurrence which also has nice dioxide crystals

> This scapolite crystal = 5cm



What are dioxide crystals? ;-)

20th Aug 2016 07:47 BSTErik Vercammen Expert

I think it should be 'diopside'.

20th Aug 2016 11:19 BSTVolkmar Stingl

I know (see smiley!)

20th Aug 2016 15:19 BSTDennis Tryon

Self-collected at Ray mine Arizona on a TGMS field trip


20th Aug 2016 17:05 BSTMatt Courville

Nice and flashy Dennis!(tu)

20th Aug 2016 18:19 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Corrected Volkmar ... Thx Erik :-)

PS. Denis. I think you already posted that Chryso ...still nice to see :)

21st Aug 2016 14:54 BSTjeff yadunno

hey i have been there! this is from as well....


i would go back just for the scenery.. maybe absail the cliffs which are enroute

22nd Aug 2016 21:26 BSTSean

Thanks for showing me the location to find Diopsides, John. It looks quite interesting. Plus, it's close by my house.

And thank you Matt for the compliment on my Apatite. I've got more like this one in my collection. I have way more of them from multiple locations. It's too bad you didn't go to the club's trip to Cabonga. If you came, you would've found this,

Corundum (Var.: Sapphire)

22nd Aug 2016 21:30 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice find!

22nd Aug 2016 21:43 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

Awesome corundum!

22nd Aug 2016 23:29 BSTKeith Wood

Here is a little garnet I collected in North Carolina. The property had not been collected on in twenty years, and everyone said it was closed. My collecting partner and I were the first to find out it had changed hands. The new owner let us on, exclusively. The good times rolled! I miss that dig!

23rd Aug 2016 15:22 BSTMatt Courville

Keith, where did you get such a 'little sharpie marker' to go with your 'little garnet' ?:-S -very nice

Nthingu, I guess I missed-out. Also very nice! What size it the corundum? Where was this found - by the dam, or another area?

28th Aug 2016 17:10 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

Two thumbnail specimens of andradite that I collected from the Memphis Mine in the Organ District of Dona Ana Co., New Mexico. Great potential there for more of these and the site is open to the public including collectors!

28th Aug 2016 19:49 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

I enjoy following this thread, nice specimens all! :)-D

30th Aug 2016 16:48 BSTMatt Courville

I really like the those garnets Michael - what sizes are they?

Here is a neat but somewhat ugly for display collected apatite cluster. I like it because it shows 3 different coloring variations all next to each other on the same piece of calcite

30th Aug 2016 18:51 BSTjeff yadunno

went digging with my nephew in the tory hill area yesterday



30th Aug 2016 19:52 BSTMatt Ciranni

I need "Identity Help" with that specimen. It's pretty cool looking, whatever it is. Sphalerite?

30th Aug 2016 19:55 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Looks like pargasite amphibole xls with minor apatite.:-)

30th Aug 2016 20:28 BSTWayne Corwin


Troy hill where?

Was this supposed to be in ID Help Jeff?

30th Aug 2016 22:46 BSTjeff yadunno

sorry to hijack the thread

it is kind of like, you're damned if you do, you"re damned if you don't with the identity

it doesn't bother me what they are... but i did collect them... yesterday

its Tory Hill in Ontario

more specifically here:

so back on track here are a couple more from yesterday

this one i wouldn't hazard to guess

still new at this!


and these three i would guess to be titanite

however that is the opinion of someone who hardly knows what they are talking about and it has not been analyzed


oh yeah, and i met a couple people there yesterday and the one guy had found an apatite the day before(sunday)

that he described as 10" by 4"

30th Aug 2016 23:09 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hi Jeff, as per the locality you have what looks like titanite, fluorapatite, orthiclase and fluororichterite

Well done


30th Aug 2016 23:43 BSTjeff yadunno

speaking of fluororichterite

found this one at night... in the rain... with a beach umbrella and a flashlight



stopped by the site a few days ago with a friend and there was a sign posted on the fence just behind the outcrop

eco mineral tours or something similar with a phone# sorry i didnt snap a pic

on the other side of the road i saw an imprint in the calcite where someone had removed a large apatite!

31st Aug 2016 13:35 BSTPavle Jovicic

Great finds everyone,here is one interesting small Grossular and Barite.


5th Sep 2016 14:22 BSTjeff yadunno

found this one near kenogami lake


5th Sep 2016 15:23 BSTMaggie Wilson Expert

Spent some time at the Munro Mine east of Matheson Ontario - Chrysotile is not everyone's cup of tea, but Reiner and I were like kids in a candy store as we played on the remains of the abandoned ore piles.

Serpentine group mineral, chrysotile, and the mountains of waste from the milling plant.



5th Sep 2016 15:44 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Cool striations on that Andradite, Michael. Keith, isn't it neat to find specimens in locs long thought cleaned out.

Nice find Nthingu.

5th Sep 2016 17:23 BSTMichael C. Michayluk


Just saw your post...If you click on the photo it will take you to the mindat page. The single crystals was 7 mm wide with the cluster measuring about 17mm. Thanks!

Nice finds all!

5th Sep 2016 17:59 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

Thanks John! :)-D

6th Sep 2016 05:42 BSTVolkmar Stingl

I like this thread! There must be no professional photographs and self-collecting remains the main thing.

My pics are from Yongping copper mine in Jiangxi province (Shangrao prefecture) in PR China. I was there several times and went back home never without good finds. Even the local people helped me and provided me with heavy Tools and their own strength. I really had a nice time there!

Calcite on siderite, dirty when i found it, and after cleaning (sorry for the quality).


13th Sep 2016 08:23 BSTDale Foster Expert


Two pieces I collected from dumps at Wheal Kitty Mine, St Agnes on the 9th September whilst showing a new Mindat member good spots to collect.

15th Sep 2016 00:01 BSTMatt Ciranni



Collected at Succor Creek area, Oregon/Idaho border area.

I just wish I had a petrified dog to go fetch it.

15th Sep 2016 02:34 BSTmojavejunkie

Copyright ©
pink tourmalline and lepodlite pocket material collected in pala district ,san diego ,california. cabbed for fun..its awesome and priceless to me.

15th Sep 2016 05:18 BSTMatt Ciranni

The "Stick" is a piece of petrified wood I found that thought was interesting, and figured some rockhounds would like it, but I do have more mineralogically interesting pieces I will upload and share.

24th Sep 2016 23:55 BSTSean

Here's some more pictures.

Here's an Apatite from Bear Lake Diggings before it closed this year. I was absolutely entertained when I heard the news.

Now, here are two minerals where I want everyone to guess and they are and where they come from. I don't know if this hint helps but, I live in Ontario completely near Quebec (Province. Not the city).



24th Sep 2016 23:58 BSTSean

Matt [Ciranni], Mojavejunkie - I do apologize for criticizing both of you. I didn't realize that you were allowed to have some exceptions on this page. Usually I read first before doing anything, but I screwed up and didn't read Matt [Courville]'s post carefully. Nice stuffs, by the way.

John - Thank you. That club that you recommended me to join is not bad. I thought this club was just gonna go to locations that anyone can go to (like the ones on the guidebook by Chambers of Commerce (Bancroft) themselves). Even if they did do that, this gives me more opportunity to go to Bancroft.

Matt [Courville] - The Sapphire is around 2cm. I found it at one of the shores/islands on the same reservoir. While most of the people that I was with were hammering away on the rock face, I was looking in the water since I had more luck finding Sapphires in the reservoir than on the land.

25th Sep 2016 00:07 BSTPhil M. Belley Expert

Nthingu Musomba Wrote:

> Now, here are two minerals where I want everyone

> to guess and they are and where they come from. I

> don't know if this hint helps but, I live in

> Ontario completely near Quebec (Province. Not the

> city).


You'll have to supply clearer pictures if you want us to guess what these are!

25th Sep 2016 00:11 BSTSean

Dang, are they too blurry for you and everyone?

25th Sep 2016 00:51 BSTPhil M. Belley Expert

Yes, too blurry.

25th Sep 2016 01:48 BSTSean

Dang, is everyone else having trouble seeing the pictures too?

25th Sep 2016 02:01 BSTSteve Bussan (2)

I found this specimen as a basketball sized chunk of calcite at the Mass Mine in Ontonogan Co. MI during Mineral Retreat Week about 5-6 years ago. I started to etch it and noticed milky white quartz crystals sticking out. Several weeks of slow work revealed this quartz specimen and it has a bit of copper and silver attached. About 6"x6"x6".

25th Sep 2016 02:55 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

the mystery mineral remind me of jeffrey mine vesuvianite

25th Sep 2016 03:20 BSTSean

That's correct. Matt [Neuzil] got the first green one correctly.

25th Sep 2016 06:00 BSTBruce Cairncross Expert

Here's a photo of me holding a molybdenite specimen just collected off the dumps at Houtenbeck There's also a photo of some lying on the ground, with vein quartz and bits of the granite host rock.


28th Sep 2016 17:49 BSTjeff yadunno


found this here:

lots of small titanite there( by my guess) which is not listed for the site



these are from near bear lake diggings


30th Sep 2016 06:44 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

Interesting feldspar and titanite, jeff. I had found some similar in monteagle twp.

4th Oct 2016 10:58 BSTJerry Cone Expert


This kasolite was collected on 9/10/2016 in the Red Hills, Derry District, Sierra County, New Mexico while collecting with Michael Michayluk. It was great to see that bright yellow when the rock was split. It's my first uranium mineral.

8th Oct 2016 14:58 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert



Don't normally look for gold specimens but going through my collection to photograph minerals I got to the gold section and these are a couple of my favorite self collected gold specimens. The first one is from the Gallagher mine in the Tombstone district of Arizona, thin sheets of gold growing on a tiny, clear quartz crystal.

The second one is from the Golden Rule mine by Dragoon. This one I liked for the association of gold by the anglesite crystal.

Love seeing so many of the self collected specimens posted on this thread.


9th Oct 2016 00:41 BSTjeff yadunno

Fluorapatite (by my guess)

from near what used to be bear lake diggings


15th Oct 2016 17:32 BSTJerry Cone Expert


This beautiful fan of hemimorphites and the unknown crystal at their base (maybe cerussite) were collected on 10/8/2016 at the Stevenson-Bennett mine in New Mexico.

19th Oct 2016 15:24 BSTAndré Heyninck

Barite collected with my dirty hands at the Lompret quarry.



19th Oct 2016 17:30 BSTHerman Du Plessis


Self collected smokey quartz klein spitzkoppe Namibia in march 2016.

19th Oct 2016 17:35 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice- cool picture Herman

21st Oct 2016 01:23 BSTMatt Ciranni




No petrified sticks this time, promise!

First pic is a spray of flattened bari(y)te crystals, collected from central Idaho, in the upper Salmon River area.

The second one, it's from the Owyhee Mountains, Idaho side, and is a lime-iron silicate contact zone mineral deposit, as far as I can tell the main mineral is probably Hedenbergite. I just like the way it looks, with the somewhat brittle black needles fanning out into this large cluster. The mines in the area are active again, but people could still drive on up past them to pick up rocks near the summit (at least, they could as of 2 summers ago.)

The third one is a nice little black tourmaline crystal, a little over an inch tall, it's doubly terminated and really nicely formed. This was from the "black crystal pit" in an undisclosed area in southern Idaho.

28th Oct 2016 15:56 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Bit of a story with this matrix gypsum crystal. I took a group out locally, to collect gypsum. I was leading the tour and stopped at a good spot and myself not actually collecting went a different route than normal. I turned around to say something to the group when the sun caught a glint from a crystal pocket on the back side of a huge hunk of wall that had fallen a while back. I went to look and found a great pocket of clear gypsum. I called the group over and they hacked up the chunk to remove what they could. My brother in law had his chance at it and filled his bucket up. Everyone had a chance at the spot and most just tossed what they found in buckets.

Next day Winston brought over his finds to have me look. In there was this piece. It was a perfect little crystal, nicely perched on some matrix. I mounted it for him in a big perky box. He was proud of his find. I thought of my having let everyone else at that pocket and not having even taken one piece.

After Winston passed away a couple of years ago the piece came back to me from his son, who knew about the find. He thought I should have that piece back since I had found the spot in the first place.

The piece has a special place in my collection, not to mention the way it was found and passed through my brother in laws hands before coming back to me.


28th Oct 2016 17:07 BSTMatt Courville

Some great additions(tu) Rolf I appreciated your story of selflessness. I always like to keep some nice pieces for my niece and nephew when I'm out collecting. They seem to get so excited - as if I just handed them a hundred dollar bill. Now I just have to convince them to keep track of everthing....

I just finished another photo shoot and decided on sharing this surprise zircon - found at the Wesport roadcut in Frontenac Ontario (approx. 2cm long). I had originally thought that this was a weathered piece of titanite, anatase or something similar. Sure it's a bit ugly, but I'm pretty sure some will like it as well:-D

28th Oct 2016 17:57 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

Awesome Zircon Matt

Collected with my dirty hands was this black euhedral crystal of shorl (40 mm tall) intergrown and embedded in feldspar. From a pegmatite near South Pass in Fremont Co., Wyoming

I have lost my notes detailing the exact locality. This specimen was collected during a structural mapping exercise at my geology field camp. (Camp Branson, University of Missouri 2012)

28th Oct 2016 19:26 BSTJake Harper Expert


A quartz grouping colored green by chlorite and also included with epidote crystals. Collected by Dana and I in the spring of 1994.

28th Oct 2016 22:14 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice Zircon Matt, glad you posted it.

@ jake where did you find the QTZ?

29th Oct 2016 01:21 BSTJake Harper Expert

Oops! Here's our old stomping grounds:

29th Oct 2016 02:35 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

Nice pieces matt, michael and jake. Love all 3 of those.

30th Oct 2016 03:50 GMTSean

I agree with those who praised your Zircon, Matt. Does that roadcut have a lot Zircons?

31st Oct 2016 14:12 GMTMatt Courville

Glad some appreciated the zircon:)-D

Nthingu Musomba Wrote:


> Does that roadcut have a lot Zircons?

I only saw the one, but it is reasonably large and was in full view embedded into the road-cut at shoulder level. This whole area seems to have a lot of potential if one has time and some geology knowledge. More photos of mine should be approved shortly on this particular roadcut.


6th Nov 2016 17:51 GMTjeff yadunno

another one from titanite hill


the short section of apatite at the bottom is helping to hold it upright and is not attached

6th Nov 2016 19:11 GMTSean

Nice, I plan to go to Titanite Hill next year. By the way, how big is this Apatite?

6th Nov 2016 20:26 GMTAndrew Debnam

Good find Jeff. You can still dig up there right now as the ground is not frozen yet. This is from the same vicinity. 19x7 cm with an attached amphibole

6th Nov 2016 21:35 GMTMatt Neuzil Expert

Wow. I have to get to titanite hill

7th Nov 2016 03:18 GMTSean

Dang it, Andrew! Now I really (kinda) wanna go to Titanite Hills.

I can't go right now because I don't have a car plus I don't really know how to drive a car but I plan to do something about that this year. I have to get a driver if I wanna go somewhere. By the way, can you please show me more pictures of all the sides of that Apatite?

Matt [Neuzil] - I wish you luck coming here to Canada and then to Bancroft.

7th Nov 2016 05:07 GMTVolkmar Stingl

Fluorite with quartz and pyrite, collected on Christmas day 2011 at Baimashan railway tunnel construction site in Fujian, China.

7th Nov 2016 18:31 GMTAndrew Debnam

attached are a few more views Nthingu. It weighs 3 lbs 3 oz




8th Nov 2016 13:42 GMTDale Foster Expert


Specimen of Cassiterite with crystals to 3mm appearing on two joint surfaces (see child photo) in a metamorphosed clay-slate rock locally termed killas.

Whilst not the most impressive specimen, it is interesting as it was collected from old mine waste infill material excavated from previously unrecorded shallow mine workings lying within the western section of the old Turnavore Mine.

These workings date back several hundred years, possibly even to the late medieval period and have only come to light during recent excavation work.

8th Nov 2016 14:52 GMTMatt Courville

I really like it Dale - especially since it has some historical context. I've had the opportunity to collect at a few spots that look like they havn't seen human activity in 100 years (perhaps a few lone collectors that cleaned-up very well). I'm sure you felt a bit like an archaeologist - it would be exciting to find and report something historically relevant.

Andrew that is another exceptional apatite! I'm going to need to sign-up for your 'large apatite collecting workshop' !:)-D


10th Nov 2016 22:41 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


Collected this piece in the SW Mine in Bisbee back in the 1980's and got this photo of it today. I remember when the only listing of turgite was in the 1970 book of Arizona minerals. This one has just about all the colors.

11th Nov 2016 08:45 GMTDale Foster Expert


A rather nice specimen of crystallised Pyrite from Wheal Friendship Mine, collected on the 9th November.

Considering it has been sitting out on the mine dump for in excess of 100 years it is still in remarkably good condition and once the muck was cleaned off has a good lustre.

11th Nov 2016 13:00 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


I agree about that pyrite being in such nice shape for lying in the old dumps for all those years.

I have found an old railroad bed in SE Arizona with material brought in from the 1880's Bisbee overburden and I have been amazed how nice some of the material I dig up still is for lying in the dirt for over 120 years.

Pyrite at this location can be stable and still nice and others are nothing but "rust' now.

The attached is one from that railroad bed and a big surprise that it is in such good shape.

14th Nov 2016 23:46 GMTAndrew Debnam

@ Matt, here are few more recent Apatite finds

15th Nov 2016 01:21 GMTMatt Neuzil Expert

wow! I have to get to titanite hill! It's been 2 years since i've been to bancroft. I think i'm going back!

15th Nov 2016 03:15 GMTMichael C. Michayluk

Collected underground in the Sunshine adit no. 3 at the Blanchard Mines, Socorro Co., New Mexico on 11/10/16

15th Nov 2016 08:51 GMTDale Foster Expert

A surprisingly good specimen of Chalcosiderite collected on the 13th November 2016 from dumps at Stowes Shaft Phoenix United Mines, the type locality for this mineral:

Also collected on Sunday from the same dump, a very rich Cassiterite in 'blue peach' matrix:

15th Nov 2016 13:38 GMTTony Charlton


Royston Turquoise.

15th Nov 2016 13:42 GMTTony Charlton


Brazil law twin.

15th Nov 2016 13:43 GMTTony Charlton


15th Nov 2016 16:32 GMTMatt Courville

Very nice Andrew(tu) Tony, your photos are not only getting nicer as they go, they are mysteriously getting larger. I really like the last rutile:)-D

15th Nov 2016 17:51 GMTSean

It's official, the Gibson East Road Occurrence (Titanite Hill) is the next Bear Lake Diggings.

19th Nov 2016 04:49 GMTFrank deWit Manager

My dirty hand last sunday at the Adelaide mine,

with a crocoite that I just took out to see her first sunshine

Expect some red fireworks next Tucson!

19th Nov 2016 16:04 GMTMatt Courville

Wow Frank!! Considering how I first imagined how this post might turn out, your photo is like the 'cherry on top of the sunday':)-D

I'd like to share something that got me excited yesterday after getting back some results on a find at the Tatlock marble quarry in Ontario. It is a small occurrence of Dravite - tourmaline, which seems to be uncommon in Ontario (at least in this color) Either way I was happy, as this was my last outing for the year here in Canada


19th Nov 2016 21:07 GMTSean

That's very beautiful. That should be on my collecting list for next year.

20th Nov 2016 00:08 GMTReiner Mielke Expert

Since red seems to be the flavor of the moment I collected this back in 1972 at the Apache mine in Arizona before I knew better than to go into a death trap like that. About 8cm across

20th Nov 2016 04:12 GMTAndrew Debnam

How was it a death trap Reiner?

20th Nov 2016 11:13 GMTReiner Mielke Expert

An unbelievable amount of large loose rock in the back and the rock was very incompetent. I was able to tunnel into the wall 2 meters using just a crowbar.

30th Dec 2016 07:18 GMTDale Foster Expert

A nice Cassiterite, collected on 28th December 2016:

Specimen collected from this dump at Creegbrawse Mine:

1st Jan 2017 06:56 GMTJason Shopiro




Got the first at the quarry in Penfield NY and the rest at Walworth NY this year.

1st Jan 2017 07:06 GMTJason Shopiro

Rolf that's some amazing gypsum! My old house was a few minutes from the Erie Canal in New York and adjacent to that was an old rail road clearing. All along the hillside next to the old rail road is covered in gypsum. Nothing clear like that but some nice big pieces to go have some fun digging out. I was walking there this summer on my way back to the car and found this nice little piece shaped exactly like a pistol. Not a big gun fan but just had to keep it.



1st Jan 2017 12:35 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Thanks for the comment on the clear gypsum. It is my favorite from all the finds in our area.

This was a trip to another area in 2014 and it produced a different gypsum. The area has been gated now, shame but it was a great place to dig gypsum. Biggest crystal we ever found here was 17 inches long.

1st Jan 2017 12:38 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


Wanted to add both photos to one link but the "error" message kept coming up so here it is separately, a close up of the two larger pieces. The color is from an unknown inclusion. These crystals are fluorescent also.

1st Jan 2017 13:17 GMTReiner Mielke Expert

Looks good enough to eat. The inclusions are probably a hydrocarbon which would account for the fluorescence. Should phosphoresce as well. This is what also causes brown fluorite and it's fluorescence.

1st Jan 2017 14:16 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Definitely from Marmora Nine originally!

David K Joyce

1st Jan 2017 14:35 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert


Vein 12, Tadaout, Taouz, Er Rachidia Province, Drâa-Tafilalet Region, Morocco

Dimensions: 5 cm x 3 cm x 2 cm

Largest Crystal Size: 6 mm

5cm x 3cm x 2cm with crystals to 6mm. which I collected from a small adit at this mine during the 2012 Mindat Conference

1st Jan 2017 14:43 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert


Coud'a workings, Mibladen Mining District, Midelt Province, Drâa-Tafilalet Region, Morocco

Dimensions: 4 cm x 2 cm x 2 cm

4cm x 2cm x 2cm with Vanadinite crystals to 3mm.

I collected this from the "rat hole" during the 2012 Mindat Conference

1st Jan 2017 19:06 GMTJason Shopiro

Rolf that gypsum is amazing I would love to see it under a black light! I found this celestite and calcite right on the side of the road near Chittenango Falls State Park in New York.



6th Jan 2017 07:56 GMTDale Foster Expert

As the weather was nice on the 2nd January, I was able to visit a few sites, first location was the cliffside dumps of Wheal Droskyn at Perranporth where I got several nice specimens:

This specimen above is interesting as it has Topaz as small crystals associating with the Cassiterite. I have not previously noted Topaz at this locality.

I then went on to Trevaunance Cove at St Agnes, where despite there being a lot of sand covering the bulk of the pebble bank, I got an interesting Cassiterite bearing pebble and two modest Wood Tin specimens.

Final stop was to Magors Shaft of Unity Wood Mine, where a bit of diligent searching in the late afternoon sunlight yielded a specimen containing Cassiterite and Wolframite:

This one looks better 'in the flesh' than in the picture.

6th Jan 2017 13:09 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Frank de Wit keep your specimens coming.

Purple-blue SPINEL 4.5 cm across... xls to 1cm. on forsterite matrix. This specimen was in Rocks and Minerals mag. recently in a Phil Belley article on Des Cedres Dam ,Quebec locality

13th Jan 2017 07:36 GMTDale Foster Expert


An interesting specimen of cassiterite in a heavily fractured quartz / metasediment matrix.

Self collected from the cliffside dumps lying to the north of Contact Shaft of Cligga Mine.

23rd Jan 2017 11:38 GMTDale Foster Expert


Pyrite forming lustrous crystallised layers within a dark coloured, partly tourmalinised metasediment matrix.

Where freshly exposed the Pyrite shows a paler colour and gains a brassier yellow colour where water has penetrated the layers, some oxidation has also occurred in these areas as well.

Self collected on 21/1/2017 from the only section of dumps on public access (right to roam) land at the former Wheal Herland site.

27th Jan 2017 13:06 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Yesterday I was breaking some material from the Manila Mine, now closed to collecting and came across some great habits of wulfenite. The first one is a tiny little cube of wulfenite with tiny phosphohedyphane on chalcedony.

The second photo is one with a number of things going on. Don't know if the hoppering is part of the growth or etching from fluids later. There are also two hollowed out wulfenite shells at the far left. This mine had a lot of various habits of wulfenite but unfortunately all in micro crystals.

27th Jan 2017 17:04 GMTjeff yadunno

last trip out to the Miller property, sebastopol

i picket up a big chunk right near the road since it was close and had some decent size titanite showing

i figured that if i spent some money on vinegar but got a nice piece it was like driving out for another trip

i was trying to follow advice on here to only etch if it will be worth it

well... i like it... not like i am going to be throwing it out

but no big titanites showed up as the calcite dissolved away

the biggest ones were the broken ones showing on the outside of the original rock

sorry i dont think i have a before photo


the peice at the top of this photo broke while i was taking the pics oops as you can see by this next pic


found this strange coloured section of titanite... coating? pseudo?

centre of the photo... looks like a line of lighter colored material with a small bit of titanite colour showing on it


there are more photos bit i dont want to clog up the thread with them all

so i made a folder... password is bananas

took just over $60 in vinegar and months in the bucket

13" x 8.5" x 7.5"

24 lbs finished weight all aprox

27th Jan 2017 20:04 GMTMatt Courville

Jeff, like you I'm trying to find neat things within my collection to amuse myself until the winter is over here in Ontario,Canada.

I've found all sorts of neat stuff at the Miller Property site, so if you can chip a small grain-seized piece of anything mysterious to Kerry Day at (Kaygeedee minerals) $10 will likely get you an answer.

Here is one such example that was analysed and determined to be dravite tourmaline (approx. 1cm length) from a location just west of Ottawa, ON There is some graphite attached as well.

2nd Feb 2017 12:41 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


Two days ago, took my cousins husband out on a collecting trip. As I moved into some grass in the wash to get a photo of him I looked down where I was going to step and this fish tail twin was in the dirt where I was going to stand. Best one I have found at the spot and my find of the day on this trip.

Did find the longest single crystal of gypsum also, 22.5 inches long.

2nd Feb 2017 14:15 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Collected with my very dirty hands during the Mindat Conference ...Spinel 3mm across... from the Shwe-pyi-aye Mine, Mogok Valley,

2nd Feb 2017 15:44 GMTMatthew House (2)

This is a calcite from Ilion, New York collected this fall.

2nd Feb 2017 16:30 GMTLouis Verschuren


Fresh from the pocket, I collected this piece in 2014, much cleaner now....

2nd Feb 2017 16:49 GMTDoug Schonewald

Spheroidal calcites collected in 2016 in central Washington. They are in basalt rock and came from marina dredge spoils when the marina was expanded and deepened.



2nd Feb 2017 18:59 GMTMatt Neuzil Expert

Nice piece Rolf! I have found fishtail gypsum in wyoming before. I believe i traded a piece from a member here for a River Valley garnet. It wasnt 22 inches long though.

4th Feb 2017 17:08 GMTAndrew Debnam

great news finds for 2017 everyone, this is a 3cm fluorite twin (I believe) with a phantom surrounded by Dolomite crystals. Found in Niagara Feb 2017.

4th Feb 2017 18:51 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Wish the fish-tail twin was the 22 incher but it was 23cm only but here is the piece that was 22.5 inches, longest one we had found at this one place.

Same wash had the bent gypsum crystals I posted on another thread. Those were about a mile down from the place we found this one.

Each place along this wash seems to have different forms of the gypsum. This wash is the place I found my nicest "desert roses" also. That place is buried at the moment from dirt filtering in from the 20 foot tall wall above it. Would take a lot of work to dig out that spot.

4th Feb 2017 19:05 GMTMatt Neuzil Expert

Sounds like a cool spot!

6th Feb 2017 08:32 GMTDale Foster Expert

Got this nice vein section from the northern contact zone of the Cligga Head granite mass yesterday afternoon:

Wall rock of metasedimentary clay-slate (killas) with a nearly three inch wide quartz vein carrying Wolframite, some Scorodite is also present a bluish green encrustations.

This specimen represents the extension of one of the greisen bordered sheeted veins where it has passed from the greisenised granite into the adjacent country rock.

7th Feb 2017 19:11 GMTVolkmar Stingl

These uralites (actinolite/tremolite ps. after diopside) I have found within an amphibolite block on top of an avalanche in a steep gorge, opposite of the emerald deposit in the Habach valley in the Austrian Alps (Salzburg). Crystal size exceeds 2 cm. I had to carry that chunk (about 1/2 m in diameter) for 3 hours. It was too dangerous to cleave it in place due to continuing danger of avalanches. Found in early spring 1996.

7th Feb 2017 23:56 GMTMatt Courville

Some very decent posts lately(tu)

Volkmar, your photo is ironically of something that I've been looking into the past two weeks. I believe that I collected some of this 'uralite' thinking that it was diopside. Once I did some density checks on a number of minerals to test another potential idea for a friend, I found a seemingly pyroxene mineral to have a density that was far too low. Once verified with 3 separate pieces, and careful visual examination, I think I have some. I'll check with the club next meeting to see if they agree.


13th Feb 2017 08:22 GMTDale Foster Expert

Whilst visiting the Trevaunance Mine site yesterday afternoon, I spotted this freshly exposed patch of mine waste, turned up when a new cable stay was added to an electricity pole. Given it was right next to the road I thought it was worth a look as I was heading home:

Turned out to be a good call as I found three really good Cassiterite specimens in this little exposure:

13th Feb 2017 11:19 GMTWayne Corwin


It's ALWAYS worth taking a look (tu) ,,,,, and getting a few nice specimens ;-)

22nd Feb 2017 01:15 GMTjeff yadunno


found here:

longest crystal is about one inch

6th Mar 2017 12:46 GMTDale Foster Expert


A small plate of matrix with crystals of Cassiterite partially coating one face.

Self collected from the dumps of Marshalls Shaft, South Condurrow Mine on 5th March 2017.

Whilst there is still potential for collecting at this site, a bit of care needs to be taken as some lovely person has dilligently picked up their dog's poop in plastic bags and then flung these into the area of exposed mine waste on the dump, turning it into dog poop alley!!

6th Mar 2017 16:13 GMTRichard Gibson

My favorite epidote, collected last October at the Calvert Mine, Montana. I was (am) afraid to trim it down more for fear the crystal would break, so the whole rock is about 17 cm across.

6th Mar 2017 19:40 GMTMatt Ciranni

That's a really nice one. I swung through there a couple years ago, and the largest epidote I found there was only about an inch, and it wasn't as complete or well formed.

21st Mar 2017 16:54 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert


Based on SEM analysis which they examined (see child photo) and visual inspection, both Michel

Picard ( recently retired curator Canadian Museum of Nature) and Dr. Douglas Watt, mineralogist very familiar with SEM spectra, confirm this specimen to be meionite. Michel related to me that all the meionite specimens in the CMN collection were confirmed by SEM analysis and that the ratios of my specimen were in keeping with those at the museum.

My specimens were collected (Oct.2017) in a calcium rich skarn which adds to the evidence.

22nd Mar 2017 16:53 GMTRob Woodside Manager

nice piece!

22nd Mar 2017 22:40 GMTSean

"My specimens were collected (Oct.2017) in a calcium rich skarn which adds to the evidence."

You collected in the future? Can I borrow your time machine?

7th May 2017 05:33 BSTGuy Davis (2)

Found this smoky quartz cluster with micro schorl crystals on some of the faces somewhere in the state of Maryland today.

10th May 2017 13:26 BSTMatt Courville

Nice find Guy - I've found some nice smokey quartz in the past, but they always seem to look better in person, and wet, than from photos. Since mindat is pretty strict on the photo posting, I might start adding some of my 'wet' minerals to this thread, and I hope others do as well.

28th May 2017 19:05 BSTSean

Here's one of my first mineral that I collected this year

28th May 2017 21:04 BSTWayne Corwin


What is it?

28th May 2017 21:21 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Something similar to this ;-)

28th May 2017 22:27 BSTSean

Very funny, Pavel.

Wayne, the black minerals are Spinels. The green minerals are Fosterite while the white minerals are Calcite. This speiciman is from the Parker Mine.

29th May 2017 23:07 BSTChris Rayburn

Pavel Kartashov Wrote:


> Something similar to this

> ;-)

Thanks for a good laugh Pavel!

15th Jun 2017 15:39 BSTjeff yadunno

i could be wrong but i believe this is some mineral coating(dolomite?) on this fossil





found at a road cut while looking for fossils


hwy11 south of Dymond, ontario


15th Jun 2017 16:43 BSTD Mike Reinke

Try an acid or vinegar test? Looks like your probably correct, to me.

19th Jun 2017 22:25 BSTChris Rayburn

A couple of nice celestine on calcite specimens dug last Tuesday in Emery County, Utah on the eastern flank of the San Rafael Swell. Photos (i.e., photographer) don't do them justice. Celestine1 is 8 x 13 cm with a 4 x 4 cm celestine cluster; Celestine2 is 5.5 x 8 cm with individual celestine blades to 1.5 cm.


25th Jun 2017 23:32 BSTJason Ferguson

1st two are from El Dorado county CA and the 3rd is my newest addition from my hounding trip to Colorado at Devils head!



26th Jun 2017 00:22 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Very nice Jason

26th Jun 2017 13:37 BSTMatt Courville

Wow Jason, I wish there was a spot near my place that had those monsters!

26th Jun 2017 14:19 BSTWayne Corwin


Did you only find the one nice big crystal at Devils head?

26th Jun 2017 17:09 BSTAndrew Debnam

collected this past weekend at the Marmoraton Iron mine, garnets, Pyrite, barite and epidote-etched in HCL to expose the crystals

@Jason -nice crystals

26th Jun 2017 21:15 BSTSean

Andrew, were you with a mineral club when you went or you went by yourself?

26th Jun 2017 21:28 BSTAndrew Debnam

I was with the Kawartha rock and Fossil Club. I have also been with Walker mineralogical club as well. Aecon the construction company now owns the property and they are crushing and using the material from the old open pit mine for road work. The only way I know to collect there is with a club. Aecon to my knowledge does not allow entry unless it is club trip for liability and insurance reasons. They have called the police when people have attempted to enter without permission.

30th Jun 2017 07:54 BSTDale Foster Expert


Specimens of Cassiterite collected from a demolished hedge line during a site investigation of a new building plot located on part of the former Wheal Montague Mine site in June 2017.

A large block had split apart and the two halves were just sitting on a rubble pile glittering in the sun. These specimens are considerably trimmed down from the large sections of the block.

2nd Jul 2017 13:40 BSTDennis Jones

Yesterday I found several nice samples of calcite on my field trip to the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia. As you can see, my hands are indeed dirty.

3rd Jul 2017 19:57 BSTMatt Ciranni


These are fun to dig for, especially when they have the nice three-faced terminations on them.

From the "Black Crystal Pit" somewhere in southern Idaho.

3rd Jul 2017 20:22 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


One of my favorite self collected azurites from the Last Chance Mine in Cochise County Arizona. The crystals are so thin they are nearly see through.

Nice to get it home and mounted before any real damage.

3rd Jul 2017 20:43 BSTMatt Courville

From the Marmoraton Iron Mine in Ontario - This place is just a huge place to collect at, and although the garnet gets all of the attention, there are some oddities such as this calcite with what appears to be microscopic fibrous actinolite that was growing throughout the calcite.

Also a nice spider that was actively devouring a live of life I suppose



3rd Jul 2017 20:47 BSTMatt Courville




post 2 of 2 - a better view of the odd calcite/actinolite? You can see on piece which shows better the smooth actinolite.

13th Jul 2017 17:59 BSTJason Ferguson

thank you!

13th Jul 2017 18:01 BSTJason Ferguson

Wayne Corwin Wrote:


> Jason

> Did you only find the one nice big crystal at

> Devils head?

Wayne, I did. Myself and 2 of my buddies camped for 3 days on Devil's Head while I was up there visiting. We dug 8 feet down and trenched probably 10 feet finding a string of pockets. This Crystal was only the 4th largest of what we found, sadly the other 3 larger crystals wouldn't fit in my carry on.

13th Jul 2017 20:13 BSTWayne Corwin


When the crystals don't fit in your carry on, just mail those home.

20th Jul 2017 22:58 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Not a single specimen here but the Sulphur we collected back in the late 1970's at the Hycroft mine in Nevada. I had this stored in an old shed and ran out of room so out in our rock yard it went. A few more piles of various rocks and minerals all around, all self collected.

21st Jul 2017 01:48 BSTAndrew Debnam

Rolf all you need is some saltpeter and charcoal for fireworks

21st Jul 2017 05:03 BSTGuy Davis (2)

The beryl crystals weren't even nibbling at this location in Maryland, yesterday, but the smoky quartz crystals were biting hard.

The smokies at this site are usually found loose in soils exposed by mechanical weathering by nature, but I found this one by digging about 1 foot down.

21st Jul 2017 21:36 BSTSean

Here are the things that I found last weekend.


Astrophyllite? (or Aegirine) (plus, sole yellowish mineral that I don't know)

Okay, my iPhone doesn't do a good job taking pictures of small minerals. But...Sabinaite?

Before you ask, I found them in Mont St. Hilaire.

There are more pictures to come.

28th Jul 2017 07:57 BSTDale Foster Expert


A rich Cassiterite in 'blue peach' (tourmaline rich) matrix, self collected on the morning of the 23rd July from a small exposure of dump material lying to the west of the stamps engine house (eastern stamps) and vanner house complex of Wheal Basset Mine.

3rd Aug 2017 06:43 BSTDale Foster Expert


Self collected from dumps at Poldice Mine on the 30th July 2017 while out for an afternoon walk with my dog, I didn't have my collecting bag or hammers with me, only a hand lens in my pocket.

A large hand specimen showing crystalline Cassiterite to 4mm liberally sprinkled across this face of the specimen in cavities on the other faces and some minor amounts of Wolframite (in cavity towards upper right of specimen in this view) hosted in a matrix of tourmaline hornfels with chlorite.

When first found the specimen was heavily coated in dump growth iron oxides and only the small patch of Wolframite was visible, although the weight of the piece hinted at further mineralisation concealed by the muck.

It has been cleaned in oxalic acid to reveal the Cassiterite.

3rd Aug 2017 14:22 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Sceptre quartz, new locality, Lyndhurst area. I collected this in May, 2017. Probably the first sceptre from this area.

5.5cm high

3rd Aug 2017 23:46 BSTScott Rider

This large 15cm smoky quartz (I have a long hand!!!) was collected a few weeks ago in Devil's Head, Colorado. It wasn't the largest crystal, but it was the only one that resembled a textbook quartz crystal. All others were oddly shaped...

This was found next to a pocket on my friend's claim that yielded numerous large crystals over a foot long. This came from a pocket that was about 6-7 feet from that large pocket (I wasn't there for that pocket). Most of the crystals were recrystallized, which isn't too unusual for pegmatite minerals.

8th Aug 2017 03:18 BSTMatt Courville



Some brown-ish axinite and green epidote from the Malone quarries in Ontario. Not only was I fortunate enough to be invited to this 'scheduled, club only' collecting site, but the weather was finally sunny after we got some much rain here this spring and early summer. My 1st axinite as well!

Axinite F.O.V roughly 25cm, epidote 15-20cm

8th Aug 2017 03:43 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Nthingu, here is spinel. :-)

It is from Gon phlogopite deposit, Aldan.

8th Aug 2017 05:00 BSTSean

Pavel, did you find this Spinel yourself?

Just saying, 99% of my minerals were found by me.

8th Aug 2017 13:31 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Dimensions: 4.8 cm x 4 cm x 2.5 cm

Largest Crystal Size: 4.8 cm

Lyndhurst Ontario area

Three generations of growth on the main crystal which has a terminated "sidecar" crystal attached.The main crystal has a hematite included first generation crystal which is terminated with small quartz crystals (second generation) that appear smokey and the clear outer crystal covering three sides of the first generation crystal is third generation growth.

8th Aug 2017 13:55 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Nthingu, yes it is. But it isn't fresh find.

9th Aug 2017 03:36 BSTSean

Isn't "fresh find". Are you saying that you didn't find it at some quarry (a mine nor a occurrence) and you bought this yourself?

9th Aug 2017 06:14 BSTDale Foster Expert

Nthingu Musomba Wrote:


Isn't "fresh find". Are you saying that you didn't find it at some quarry (a mine nor a occurrence) and you bought this yourself?

Now, given the language issues, I would read Pavel's entire post to mean he did collect it himself, just not recently.

9th Aug 2017 06:39 BSTPhil M. Belley Expert

Pavel, here is spinel ;-)

9th Aug 2017 12:21 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Oh ya Phil, that is one big spinel...seen in person even more impressive

9th Aug 2017 15:05 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Yes, it was collected in 2011. I don't know why, but I decided that in this thread we boast only by our fresh finds. But my last field trip took place in 2013 between two artritis attacs. Now I'm no longer a fare. :(

Hi Phil,

It is really amazing how mineralogy of these precambrian skarns are similar worldwide - the same orange calcites, diopsides, blue apatites, black spinels, brown pargasites you may to collect in Canada, Madagascar, Slyudyanka or Aldan.

When Gon deposit was in operation for its phlogopite, 10-12-cm size spinels weren't rarity here. Once I brought 6 kg complete and doubleterminated forsterite crystal from these skarns. But I haven't space in my apartment to store such large stones, so I exchanged it for 2-3 Langban's micros.

I collected 35-cm high books of phlogopite, but preserved only this one as souvenir.

Unfortunately I never met personally larger complete apatite crystal then this, but saw 30x10 cm fragments of them without terminations.

But all this was long ago in past for me.

9th Aug 2017 19:01 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Yes Pavel, that IS amazing... nice specimens too .

Man,I would have liked to have seen that forsterite!!!

I believe you also have similar blue apatites to the one below... I already put this one up, but it's the best blue apatite I have collected...

John from Ontario,Canada

11th Aug 2017 17:27 BSTChris Rayburn

Beautiful blue apatite John!

Here's a little grossular and diopside that I collected at the Pipestone Mine in Jefferson County, Montana USA last week: Specimen is roughly 9 cm x 12 cm and was etched from calcite.

12th Aug 2017 20:01 BSTTravis Hetsler

Not collected by my hands, but a great video of smokey quartz being extracted at a site in Raleigh, NC:

16th Aug 2017 00:52 BSTSean

Here's a sneak peek of a Apatite that I'll share more soon from the Seybold Mine.

20th Aug 2017 22:38 BSTChris Rayburn

8 x 18 cm plate of baryte crystals from the Whitehouse Campground area, Basin District, Jefferson Co., Montana: This was heavily coated with hard, very tenacious iron oxide. I finally hit on the right combination of chemical voodoo this weekend to clean it.

20th Aug 2017 23:14 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Hey Chris, nice specimen. Can you reveal your cleaning recipe?

20th Aug 2017 23:24 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

11cm schorl crystal on albite matrix with muscovite- Villeneuve Mine, Quebec

21st Aug 2017 00:42 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Found some small but nice sphalerite crystals at the Flamboro Quarry yesterday. My hands didn't get too dirty since I was wearing gloves! They are not TOO amazing in the world of sphalerite but sure were fun collecting!

The complex brownish crystal is about 20mm across. The plate with little clusters is 55mm across. The gemmy clustered specimen is 45mm across.



David K. Joyce

21st Aug 2017 01:29 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice, did you find any Flourite?

21st Aug 2017 01:43 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

My Sister-In-Law Mary Joyce found a "screamer" fluorite. My brother brian found a fantastic large black sphalerite. I came up empty in the fluorite department! Next time!!

21st Aug 2017 01:48 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Seems like it was mostly a sphalerite weekend! :)

David K Joyce

21st Aug 2017 03:50 BSTSteve Stuart Expert

Stilbite collected by me at Granite Mountain Quarry #1 in Little Rock, Arkansas on July 27, 2017. 2 mm HFOV.

21st Aug 2017 04:12 BSTVolkmar Stingl

Found many years ago at the Schneeberg mine in Ridnaun, South Tyrol, Italy: Almandine in antophyllite. Size 6x3cm.

21st Aug 2017 10:32 BSTChris Rayburn

Hi John--nice schorl! It's great to see all these new specimens at the height of the collecting season (at least here in the northern hemisphere).

Baryte cleaning recipe:

1. Weeklong soak in soapy water with a couple of brisk scrubs

2. Overnight soak in warm (crock pot) 10% phosphoric acid

3. Two days in warm (plastic bucket with bucket heater) ammonium bifluoride / HCl solution; see,6,407651,407668#msg-407668

4. 30 min ultrasonic cleaning

I'd hoped the third step wouldn't be needed, but phosphoric alone didn't get it done. Enough has been written about the need for extreme care when using HF, but it can't be over-emphasized. I use a large fan to disperse fumes, full tyvek suit, elbow-length chemical-proof gloves and a face shield (outdoors, of course). My neighbor saw me this weekend and is convinced I'm a beekeeper.

22nd Aug 2017 20:57 BSTSean

Here are some more pictures of the Apatites from the Seybold (Moore) Mine.


22nd Aug 2017 21:54 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Hi Chris

Thanks for sharing that cleaning recipe... I would never have figured THAT out I may not be brave enough to use that HF...

with kind regards


22nd Aug 2017 23:16 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

Found some decent blue hemimorphite digging in the tailings of the reclaimed Memphis Mine, Organ Mountains, Dona Ana Co., New Mexico on 8/20/2017

23rd Aug 2017 12:48 BSTMatt Courville

Nice picts everyone.

From John/Chris : 'I may not be brave enough to use that HF... ' I've used this acid before, and I personally would not use it outside of a proper laboratory with a fumehood and a 1st aid kit that contained HF burn cream.

It would be really neat to see field photos posted with the minerals if anyone has them(not to backtrack, but for future posts;)


23rd Aug 2017 14:05 BSTChris Rayburn

Hi John and Matt

HF is definitely my cleaning option of last resort, and fortunately it's not often that it's needed ("need" being relative, I understand). I do have calcium gluconate burn cream on hand; fortunately I've never had to use it.

Agree with Matt re. field photos. They're worth the proverbial thousand words!

23rd Aug 2017 14:43 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Chris and Matt

Ditto on the field photos...and HF :)

28th Aug 2017 13:43 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

I collected this doubly terminated calcite cluster back in 2014 but I just noticed it has phantoms in the two main crystals...10.5cm high, largest xl 8cm

2nd Sep 2017 17:30 BSTAndrew Debnam

Crystal cluster of Actinolite-Tremolite series from Monteagle Township. Found in a vug of weathered calcite.

2nd Sep 2017 18:40 BSTFrank Karasti

36 specks of gold I panned last weekend from the Zumbro river near Mantorville Mn. I have better luck here than most western states. There was a minor gold rush near here in 1857.

2nd Sep 2017 18:43 BSTAndrew Debnam

Neat picture Frank and good find

2nd Sep 2017 19:59 BSTKevin Conroy Expert

What is the 37th silver colored piece?

2nd Sep 2017 20:11 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

Interesting! Size?

2nd Sep 2017 21:41 BSTFrank Karasti

Good question, something heavy enough not to wash out of the pan.

2nd Sep 2017 21:43 BSTFrank Karasti

Biggest is about 1 mm, a tad hard to pick from the pan

3rd Sep 2017 00:35 BSTDoug Schonewald

The silver item has a twisted look to it that appears to be a drill shaving from something. I suppose it could be something natural, but it looks like it is a shaving off a drill. Take a look at it under a microscope, it might be interesting.

3rd Sep 2017 05:11 BSTGregg Little


I picked that one out too as possibly man-made. It seems to have a regular spacing in the coil of the twist. Unless Frank did an acid wash on the sample it appears too shiny for metal off a drill and its not the colour of monel. Possibly a fragment of silver jewelry? I would think aluminum would be to light to pan.

5th Sep 2017 03:11 BSTYalmer F Primeau Expert

Took me two years and multiple trips, but I finally found a piece of Michigan beryl at the Sturgeon River Pegmatite Quarry!

11th Sep 2017 01:15 BSTSean

Here are some Apatites that I've found over the weekend.


There are more to come.

12th Sep 2017 18:45 BSTScott Rider

Golden calcite from Crystal Hill Mine, Colorado. Two generation growth, golden scalenohedrons with colorless composite form crystals (modified scalenohedron?). On a crystallize manganese matrix.

There is a calcite paramorph of quartz on the bottom right in the 1st image, or on the left in the 2nd image. You can see a grey prism (quartz) and the white mass are white calcite crystals. My next post is a lose paramorph very much like the one in this image.

Approximately 15 cm x 8cm


12th Sep 2017 18:52 BSTScott Rider

White to light golden colored calcite scalenohedron crystals paramorph of a single quartz crystal. Calcite enveloped 3/4ths the quartz exposing a single crystal prism. There were many tiny quartz crystals within the breccia that the calcite formed in, and produced a few paramorph specimens, some on matrix with the golden calcite (see previous post by me, the bottom right of the specimen is another paramorph).

Crystal Hill Mine, Saguache Co., Colorado -- 3.5 cm tall


12th Sep 2017 22:16 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This is the largest known at the locality dark platy crystal of Ferriperbøeite-(Ce). It penetrates through greenish-grey rounded crystal of Tornebohmite-(Ce). Additionally here is section of brown prismatic xl of Biraite-(Ce) at right and couple redish-brown lustrous grains of Fergusonite-(Ce) (or may be Fergusonite-(Nd) - I didn't check) in the upper right corner of the photo.


Here two brownish-grey grains of Biraite-(Ce) are visible below and right from it, and large yellowish Cordylite-(Ce) grain to left from the center of the photo. FOW is ~12 mm.

It was find recently in sample from border zone of Cordilitovaya vein collected by me in 2004.

12th Sep 2017 22:31 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Usual size of Ferriperbøeite-(Ce) from this deposit is in 100 times smaller.

Medium bright plates of Ferriperbøeite-(Ce) are penetrated by two prismatic striated Ferriallanite-(Ce) and intergrows with brightmost isometric crystal of Monazite-(Ce).

Collected by me in Ternebomitovaya vein in 2004, but photographed today.

This is very small grain of golden Chalcopyrite with microscopic bluish Galena cube inside of it and surrounded by purple Bornite spurs.

Surrounding carbonate matrix is Aragonite-Strontianite intermediate member (Ca0.5Sr0.5)[CO3]. Above and below are two plates of greenish Talk.

This is the first Bornite recorded for the locality.

13th Sep 2017 11:43 BSTReiner Mielke Expert

Hello Pavel,

Nice Ferriperbøeite-(Ce)! Must have been difficult to find.

13th Sep 2017 13:28 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager


in order to find this sample, I had to dig trench 2 meters deep similar to this And before to float 700 km down by Vitim on rubber boat. ;-) I'm not talking about the fact, that each of these three trips cost me $ 2200-2500 in 2000-2004 prices.

13th Sep 2017 13:53 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

My latest find, Molybdenite xl 3.1cm across...largest one I've collected

13th Sep 2017 20:12 BSTMatt Courville

Pavel Kartashov Wrote:


> in order to find this sample, I had to dig trench

> 2 meters deep similar to this

> And

> before to float 700 km down by Vitim on rubber

> boat. ;-) I'm not talking about the fact, that

> each of these three trips cost me $ 2200-2500 in

> 2000-2004 prices.

Wow - I'm very impressed with effort. The trench, sure - the distance, sure I like adventure, but $2500 in 2000-2004 x3 is real dedication!

13th Sep 2017 21:26 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This is the reason why my material from Biraya is so expensive on eBay.

This point is in 7500 km from Moskow - plane to Irkutsk, several trains (Irkutsk-Tynda-Severobaikalsk-Taksimo), round trip, additional equpment for every visit... In addition in Irkutsk some additional bonuses waited for me, which were worth any money (at least it seemed to me then). ;-)

The prize - 6 new mineral phases (+/- 3-4 more) were result of these trips. Of course all these efforts weren't destinated to aluminous crystal shists with almandine/staurolite/kyanite (which nevertheless are at the locality).

13th Sep 2017 22:51 BSTKeith A. Peregrine


I'll never complain about driving 10 hours to reach the UP of Michigan ever again. Compared to your journeys, mine is but a spit down the road.



23rd Sep 2017 18:10 BSTSean

Here's a nice Apatite to look at before I go onto my next trip to Asbestos next weekend.

23rd Sep 2017 19:32 BSTJason Evans

I got to collect a few minerals whilst on holiday in Colorado, topaz, aquamarine, gold, fluorite, baryte, vesuvianite , diopside, and some zeolite types and whilst we were on our way back from a trip to Wyoming to watch a big lump of anorthositic basalt move in front of the sun we found some heavy black mineral which Jim identified as magnetite but once we got back to Jim's we discovered its actually a variety of magnetite called titaniferous magnetite. So far i have only taken images of my zeolites and gold.

The zeolites are thomsonite-Ca and chabazite Ca from North table mountain, Golden, Colorado, and the gold is from my first experience of gold panning in Clear creek, Colorado.


1st Oct 2017 22:03 BSTSean

Here's one of my latest Grossulars that I've found at the Jeffrey Mine.

5th Oct 2017 17:07 BSTMatt Courville

Nice Moly John!

Jason, keep the photos coming - you seem to have collected quite a variety in Colorado

'Nthingu', neat to see the grossulars, but they just don't come out the way they once did eh??


5th Oct 2017 19:37 BSTMichael C. Michayluk

One of the best red beryl specimens I have personally collected, recently re-photographed

This outcrop of Taylor Creek Rhyolite was discovered in Summer 2015 by Jerry Cone and has since yielded dozens of red beryl specimens. The red beryl is associated with quartz, feldspar, hematite, possibly ilmentite, and clay, but common minerals locally such as bixbyite, pseudobrookite, and cassiterite seem to be absent here.

5th Oct 2017 21:27 BSTSean

Matt, I'm not much of a photographer, but you should see the Grossulars in real life. Some of them are really pretty. I've got one at Dads place, but it's completely covered with dirt. I need to spray it with water. However, there's this one Garnet that's kinda sticking out with a decent (or perhaps a really good) typical Garnet shape. The one I posted on mindat has a lot of small ones, but there's one that's slightly bigger. It's in the image, but I believe it's kinda hard to see. If I had professional tools to take a picture of a mineral, then you'll most likely see more amazing details that's on this thing.

Also, you can still find good Garnets at the Jeffrey Mine, but the spot to find good Garnets is flooded now. But even if the flood is not there, this "spot" for them isn't that good anymore according to one of the volunteers who came with us to the mine. Lots of people have been digging/chiselling around the "spot". Thankfully, the spot I went to had some pretty, peachy (or white) Grossulars.

5th Oct 2017 22:47 BSTJason Evans

Here is some fluorite I collected from Bull Hill claim, Evergreen District (Malachite District), Jefferson Co., Colorado, USA

6th Oct 2017 13:58 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


This is a little hemimorphite I happened across just a day ago. I had collected it in the Southwest Mine a number of years ago but never noticed the odd crystals. The piece got mounted for the nice acicular rosasite and also had hemimorphite. The other crystals were normal tabular crystals but these two were hollow in the centers. I have no idea how they grew in this form but both crystals seem to be hollow. Because the tips are so clean and sharp I don't think there was etching involved and think they grew this way.

Anyone have any ideas if they have seen other hemimorphites like this and any ideas what causes them to form like this?

8th Oct 2017 17:45 BSTJason Evans

Beryl var aquamrine fragments and bits of crystals with no terminations although one or 2 might have etched terminations, the crystal on the bottom left is the first beryl I have collected, its rather pale but quite gemmy and just over 8mm in length from Thank you lord claim, Mt Antero, Colorado 02/09/2017

23rd Oct 2017 13:34 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert




In the early 1970's I had gone to collect at the Old Yuma Mine. It was then open to visitors and not in the Saguaro National Monument, as it is now.

You could look over Tucson from the mine. I didn't go underground and collected in the various diggings near the surface.

The vanadinite was a lot more common than the wulfenite the mine is known for.

The photos here are of one of my favorite self collected pieces with a different shape for vanadinite. All three photos are of areas on the same specimen.

26th Oct 2017 08:07 BSTDale Foster Expert

On the 24th December 2014 I found this nice little specimen of Cassiterite in a quartz-feldspar matrix on the dumps of Reeds Shaft at Unity Wood Mine:

The piece had obviously been recently broken apart as there were fairly sharp edges and the face showing in this view was distinctly fresher looking than the rest of the specimen. At the time I looked around to see if the other half had been left around but was unable to find it.

Moving forward to 22nd October 2017 and I decided to take Pip for a walk at Unity Wood on our way back from scouring Trevaunance Cove beach following a storm in the week that had shifted the shingle around.

As we passed Reeds Shaft I decided to have another look around, at first finding some modest Wolframite and an interesting vein section carrying minor Cassiterite. Just as I was getting ready to move on, I looked down and right at my feet, partially poking out from under another rock, was the other half of the above specimen, needless to say it came home with me:

The two halves side by side:

And fitted together:

26th Oct 2017 14:30 BSTJon Aurich

Here is a High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen that I collected recently at Goldfield Nevada. All of the brown areas of the specimen are Gold.

26th Oct 2017 14:36 BSTJon Aurich

This High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen was found last week in Goldfield, I made a ring from it.

26th Oct 2017 16:37 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert


26th Oct 2017 16:44 BSTJon Aurich

Thanks John !!! Buying and trading Specimens is great but to find something rare that has never been touched by human hands before is Fantastic !!!

28th Oct 2017 01:14 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Intergrown, transparent Fluorite crystals which I thought at first were twinned, 6.5cm with bladed baryte, collected in the Madoc Ontario area. My best find at this locality.

28th Oct 2017 06:47 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. High Grade Epithermal Famatinite Specimen. This specimen was found at the Rustler #2 Mine. The Famatinite stringer is 3/16" wide.

28th Oct 2017 07:41 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This rare specimen contains Bismuthinite, Alunite, Quartz, Dacite, Famatinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold. Size: 1 1/4" X 3/4".

29th Oct 2017 20:01 GMTSean



Here are two of my recent Calcites that I've collected this weekend in Quebec.

30th Oct 2017 21:38 GMTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. This specimen of High Grade Epithermal Gold Ore was harvested yesterday at the famous Rustler #2 Mine at Goldfield Nevada.

31st Oct 2017 02:33 GMTDonald B Peck Expert

WOW! How big is it?

11th Nov 2017 15:01 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


This is a piece I actually had collected in the early 1970's and I thought I had no more of the material but just found a flat of that old material in my shed and upon splitting found some nice free standing molybdenite crystals. This one was the nicest.

Now that location, the Santo Nino Mine in Santa Cruz Co. Arizona is blocked by land purchases in the Duquesne area and it seems this location is another one that has closed down to access.

11th Nov 2017 19:11 GMTMichael Otto

This is the best Smokey Quartz crystal I have personally collected in Litchfield county, Connecticut although not recently collected.
I chiseled This beryl crystal from the pegmatite at the Case Quarry, Portland Ct.

11th Dec 2017 13:58 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

That's a beauty quartz Michael.

My last and best find from this Madoc locality for this collecting season here in Ontario. The fluorite crystals to 3.6cm are clear so you can see the matrix.Specimen 12.8cm across.

11th Dec 2017 18:22 GMTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. From the famous Rustler #2 Mine. Found on 12-9-17. This Epithermal High Grade Gold Specimen contains Famatinite, Quartz, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Alunite, Dacite and Native Gold. Size: 1 1/4” x 1” x 1”.

11th Dec 2017 18:37 GMTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This exceedingly rich specimen is from the famous Rustler #2, part of the Florence Mine. The brown areas of the specimen is Native Gold. Alunite is also shown in plentiful evidence. Size: 1 1/2” X 1 1/8” X 1”.

found on 12-9-17.

12th Dec 2017 14:05 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



The gypsum in the bank in the first photo with our friend Jeffrey Anderson took a couple of hours to work out and the second photo shows the material we got this trip.

Unfortunately the location is closed to the public but our property has a gate to the property and we have permission from the owner to have access to the land.

Only place we have found this type of gypsum in our SE Arizona area.

12th Dec 2017 17:25 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Geez Rolf those are huge... with that " gate to heaven...ahhh the property"... I expect you'll be having lots of company :)...come to think of it, I'm coming to Tucson in 2018 :)

16th Dec 2017 12:58 GMTUwe Ludwig

A collecting trip to the Gerling Graben near Saalfelden (Austrian Alps) resulted in some nice specimen of Aragonite. Yes, the hands were really dirty rsulted by the iron rich clay of this location.


Uwe Ludwig



27th Dec 2017 06:56 GMTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. A great piece of High Grade Epithermal Gold Ore. From the Rustler #2 Mine. Contains Famatinite, Bismuthinite, Alunite, Quartz. Milltown Andesite, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold.

29th Dec 2017 17:57 GMTMatt Courville

So many neat and realistic minerals being posted. Unfortunately too often only the most beautiful, undamaged stuff gets posted and field collectors have nothing realistic to compare to. Here is some that I collected in an area of new suburban developments in Ottawa, ON 's west end. We have: dark brown titanite, shiny graphite, dravite tourmaline (had some tested). The site feels like a giant fresh roadcut!



29th Dec 2017 18:16 GMTDoug Schonewald

Bright yellow titanites collected December 2017 in central Washington state from the Grand Coulee Intrusive Suite, Swawilla Granodiorite Pluton. Crystal size about 3.0mm.


29th Dec 2017 20:48 GMTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This specimen was recently found at the Rustler #2 Mine. It contains Famatinite, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite, Milltown Andesite, Quartz and Native Gold.

2nd Jan 2018 15:21 GMTFrank Karasti


I found this bad boy last month (12/2017) while roaming around Globe Arizona. Plenty of native copper hiding in a crumbly matrix of calcite hematite and quartz. not quite sure how I will further prepare it 11.2 pounds.

3rd Jan 2018 00:15 GMTMatt Courville

not quite sure how I will further prepare it 11.2 pounds.

no need to prepare it at all really - it's ready to become your new dinning room centerpiece ;) neat find

3rd Jan 2018 11:24 GMTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. From the famous Rustler #2 Mine. This recently found piece is High Grade Epithermal Gold Ore, it contains Famatinite, Quartz, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Alunite, Milltown Andesite, Goldfieldite and Native Gold.

4th Jan 2018 00:26 GMTsteve nala

damn happy there are some cool stuff here. these probably hold good stories. not going to forget these. cool to see jumbo clumps of gold. - steve

4th Jan 2018 00:55 GMTJon Aurich

Thanks Steve !! It’s great to find Gold Specimens like this..... The old Timers missed some of it, with one candle underground, it is understood how some of it remains hidden today.

6th Jan 2018 22:04 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

The one and only "hoppered" calcite crystal I have collected. I understand that "hoppered" calcites are not common. Recently ID'd by Dr. Doug Scott.

I'd be interested to know if anyone has collected any of these kind of calcites.

xl size: 3.5cm

16th Jan 2018 06:37 GMTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This rare specimen is from the famous Rustler #2 Mine. It contains Famatinite, Quartz, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite and Native Gold.

18th Jan 2018 21:45 GMTTaylor Vergin

Native copper crystal group that I collected in the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan several years ago. I found it while digging at one of the old poor rock piles around Calumet. Still the best specimen of this size that I've ever found up there despite over ten years of heavy collecting!

I'm also attempting to finally photograph most of my collection, so any critiques of this photo are welcome!

8x10x7cm crystal group on a 16x10x8cm specimen.


18th Jan 2018 22:20 GMTBob Harman

For JOHN MONGOMERY, these examples from Monroe County Indiana might be considered "hoppered calcites".

A 7 cm blue chalcedony geode with a 4 cm "hoppered" and triple terminated pink calcite.


a 9 cm chalcedony geode with a 6.5 cm complex group of orangish "hoppered" calcites

Both examples were self-collected about 12 years ago. CHEERS.......BOB

18th Jan 2018 22:41 GMTBob Harman

And one more superior example from the Keokuk geode field. In general, "hoppered" calcites are no so uncommon at these locations.

Pink double terminated calcite on brown and small clear calcites, as noted. CHEERS......BOB

18th Jan 2018 22:46 GMTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This specimen was found at the famous Rustler #2 Mine. It contains Famatinite, Quartz, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Dacite, Bismuthinite and Native Gold. 1 1/2” X 7/8” X 3/8”.

18th Jan 2018 22:54 GMTAndrew Debnam

Bob, I really like the pink on brown example

18th Jan 2018 23:08 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Very interesting calcites, Bob.Thanks for posting. I thought I found several more hoppered calcites but a mineralogist friend let me down gently :) I find it difficult to determine truly hoppered growth in the specimens I've collected. It seems to take a well trained eye!


20th Jan 2018 15:51 GMTChris Rayburn

Colorado is unusually warm and dry this winter; not so good for skiing, great for field collecting. Fellow Mindater Scott Rider and I visited the Calumet Iron Mine, a couple of hours southwest of Denver, last Sunday: I came away with this nice plate of epidote on magnetite. 11 x 17 cm; individual crystals are up to 1.5 cm. This was etched from calcite.

20th Jan 2018 15:59 GMTMatt Courville

Nice find Chris! Those epidotes are much more stubby than the ones I'm used to seeing at the Marmoraton iron mine in Ontario.

I'm going to try to remember to take 'actual' dirty mineral photos this year and do a before and after them on this thread for fun. There is just too much snow for now, and the -25'C with the wind at times is not exactly ideal;)

20th Jan 2018 17:23 GMTChris Rayburn

Thanks Matt. Calumet Mine epidote crystals do tend to be blocky, although there are exceptions. As usual my photo doesn't do the specimen justice.

20th Jan 2018 18:20 GMTScott Rider

Here is an image of the Calumet material before etching the calcite from the various minerals; actinolite (v. uralite), epidote, and/or magnetite. The dark splotchy areas are hopefully small matrix specimens of uralite or epidote. Once the calcite is dissolved away, you get specimens like what Chris posted.

I am far behind Chris however, I got ill after we went there during a beuatiful 50+ degree day! 2nd image is another calcite hunk, with more promise as you can see large uralite crystals frozen in place.



23rd Jan 2018 00:30 GMTScott Rider

After cleaning my smallest hunk of calcite (forgot the "before" picture); thinking it was probably going to be nothing as I couldn't see much beyond the calcite... I set in HCl before work and 8 hours later I got a neat specimen of uralite. It measures 12ish cm at the longest (FOV about 7cm) and crystals up to a cm. I'm not done etching all the calcite (about 2/3rds the way there) but I was impatient and wanted to share!! The biggest crystal is double terminated!!!

I love how I can get these out of a mine dump... Chris Rayburn showed me the spot of high grade tailings left by the old miners, and we hit a section with a lot of calcite hunks...

23rd Jan 2018 00:46 GMTKevin Conroy Expert

Nice one! I've been there a few times, and had decent success with the "uralite" and epidote. Still looking for a really good cabinet sized quartz...

23rd Jan 2018 02:18 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Yes, very neat specimens Chris and Matt mentioned, up here in Ontario we have got a long wait for the big melt.

23rd Jan 2018 07:30 GMTDale Foster Expert


A Cassiterite specimen fresh from the dumps of Trevaunance Mine, St Agnes.

Self collected yesterday morning (22/01/2018) whilst waiting for an excavation to be pumped out in order to undertake site investigation to check for unrecorded mine workings.

Specimen well coated with dump growth oxides and some lichen.

The same specimen after carefully trimming off the excess barren matrix, a bath in hypochlorite to remove the organics and three hours in hot oxalic acid to remove the worst of the iron oxides.

This has revealed a lot more crystallisation than was originally visible in the field.

The specimen after a further hot oxalic acid bath.

23rd Jan 2018 12:33 GMTChris Rayburn

The quartz is up there Kevin, but it's very elusive. I've only found singles in ten years of Calumet collecting.

True to Colorado form, we're now under 6 inches of snow and subfreezing temps...but it won't last long!

23rd Jan 2018 16:23 GMTScott Rider

Very nice cassiterite specimens Dale! Seems specimens from there are rich in that mineral!! Where I am from you don't get those types, only isolated crystals from what I have actually found and read.

I've found 1, maybe 2 crystals of cassiterite from Devil's Head in the 7 years digging there.. Boy are they hard to find. One was a little euhedral 5mm crystal embedded in a topaz termination, the other was massive, non-crystallized about 3-4mm sandwiched between some feldspar and cleavelandite. The person I sold the topaz too had his analyzed and came up as cassiterite!!

24th Jan 2018 00:05 GMTJon Aurich

. There is nothing like rare High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimens. This beautiful specimen was found at the famous Rustler #2 Mine, Goldfield Nevada.

24th Jan 2018 06:51 GMTDale Foster Expert

Scott, the Trevaunance Mine was a tin mine, the material that is to be found on the dumps is really the dregs of what this mine produced in working days.

The Trevaunance and nearby Polberro Mines were renowned for their richness in places.

9th Feb 2018 04:43 GMTJason Ferguson

Couple of my latest finds from California.


9th Feb 2018 05:31 GMTRuss Rizzo Expert

Haven't been able to go out and collect for a while...

This is the last really good specimen I found. Very gemmy with a crenelated termination.

9th Feb 2018 07:18 GMTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This exceedingly rich specimen of Gold is from the Rustler #2 Mine.

9th Feb 2018 14:22 GMTAndrew Debnam

Nice finds Jason and Russ

9th Feb 2018 19:02 GMTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This great specimen was recently found at the famous Rustler #2 Mine and made into a piece of jewelry to show it’s beauty. It contains Famatinite, Quartz, Milltown Andesite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite, Alunite and Native Gold.

10th Feb 2018 14:27 GMTjeff yadunno

this was an abandoned etching

it is back on the vinegar now

i will make better labels this year

cant remember for sure but i think this came from here:

10th Feb 2018 16:08 GMTMatt Courville

Jeff - it's always fun for me to try and re-discover minerals when our Canadian winter comes and leaves you basically bored as a field collector. I've found neat things by taking large pieces and breaking them down into smaller ones in the quite cold, but endurable garage;) You can also try new acid etching like you are doing or take samples of odd stuff and send it in for analysis. I once though my mother-in-law had found a zircon in an odd place (shape exposed was similar) so I send it in for analysis - turned out to be garnet in the end.

I'll throw-up a couple photos of garnet on that note; from 2017 collecting season. 1st is garnet from Marmoraton Iron mine that took about 200 hammer strikes since it was embedded on a completely flat giant boulder. 2nd set was meters away from my father's trailer at a campground just south of Notre-Dame du Laus, Quebec. You never know what you can find if you pay attention;)



11th Feb 2018 14:20 GMTChris Rayburn

Nice, hard-fought-and-won Marmoraton garnets Matt. I can feel the effort just by looking at it!

13th Feb 2018 19:50 GMTDaniel Bennett

I am ready to get back out after the snow melts. here is an interesting curvy limonite octahedron pseudomorph from western Montana.

photographing specimens can make another good wintertime past time when you'd rather be out collecting.



13th Feb 2018 20:07 GMTScott Rider

Daniel you make a good point. I went up to get some Calumet specimens this last weekend. The weather was great there, warm and quiet.

However I didn't take into account the weather of Denver or the Foothills... Basically on the way home, the drive started out great. Dry roads, no traffic. But then an hour into the drive I ran into a blizzard and still had 2/3rds left to go. It ended up taking almost 5 hours to get home when it normally is a 3 hour drive.

The weather report said great weather where I was digging but I never checked in between Denver and the spot. Had I done so, I wouldn't of had to drive thru a blizzard, which turned out to be one of the scariest drives of my life. I only checked Salida and the weather was perfect. Cool, dry and cloudy...

I got home unscathed but it was a very scary drive back.... Next time I'll just stay home and take pictures of my recent finds!!!

13th Feb 2018 20:17 GMTScott Rider

Here's a recent actinolite and epidote specimen found with Chris Rayborn earlier in January. We found some nice calcite encrusted mineral specimens. Some are up to 30+ pounds and I have no idea how I will be able to work with those.. Maybe trim them down after removing the calcite...

I'll take some better images (esp on the epidote) later but this little guy has some nice fibrous actinolite and uralite (actinolite pseudo pyroxene mineral) and double terminated epidote to 15mm.


13th Feb 2018 22:40 GMTMatt Courville

I love the rich green on those last two Scott! It's likely best to trim the 30 lb-ers before etching when they are less fragile. I tried one such 20-30lb just last fall. It had some great promise of epidotes across the top of some large section of calcite, but once etched, those promising xls were basically all that there was... You win some, you loose some as the saying goes, but I'd take a failed etching over -20'C any day - spring couldn't come fast enough! hahaha

13th Feb 2018 23:15 GMTScott Rider

Thanks for the advice! I'll give that a shot. I was thinking about breaking them before using the HCl but I was little paranoid about breaking crystals. Turns out I've already broke a ton of them as uralite is super fragile.

I've only "melted" one of the big hunks and it had many vugs of crystals up to about 5-6 cms! (pretty big for the uralites!). I'm trying to see if I should break that one apart or just leave it as is... Its pretty heavy at 15-20 pounds... And, I still have a bunch of the larger ones left. They are in my rock garden at the moment!!! Its a lot of fun revealing what is in the calcite! Almost as fun as originally finding the piece!

14th Feb 2018 12:53 GMTChris Rayburn

Agree with Matt. Best to trim big Calumet pieces before etching, although some collateral damage is all but unavoidable. You'll still end up with fine specimens, and a much less cumbersome cleaning process. Sorry to hear about your blizzard ambush--Colorado, you know! Me, I'm headed back down to New Mexico next week to dig in the desert and dodge the weather.

14th Feb 2018 12:55 GMTChris Rayburn

Daniel Bennett Wrote:


> I am ready to get back out after the snow melts.

> here is an interesting curvy limonite octahedron

> pseudomorph from western Montana.

> photographing specimens can make another good

> wintertime past time when you'd rather be out

> collecting.


Daniel, that's a very nice pseudo. Boulder batholith? What's the size?



14th Feb 2018 14:27 GMTScott Rider

Here's a specimen before it's HCl bath and then after. It's not the best specimen but is a good representation of what these specimens look like when pulled from the mine...


After: EDIT: Just realized I used the wrong picture LOL!!! Just found the correct one and its really blurry... Anyway, this is how the average specimen looks after the calcite baths:

14th Feb 2018 16:55 GMTDaniel Bennett

Scott I thought we had spring here for a week. turns out not.

Chris it came out of Precambrian sedimentary rock. its only 1/4 inch big.

14th Feb 2018 17:42 GMTScott Rider

Yeah, Colorado is like that. One day it can be 60+ degrees, then the next day snowing like crazy. In fact, I used to think any day that is really warm in Winter, the next day or so we pay for that in cold, wet weather...

But having a 45 degree day in Salida, only to drive through a blizzard at 20 degrees, just 10-15 miles away all within an hour, is also very Colorado!!!

You can drive from one end of Colorado to the other and run into all seasons.. I remember years ago I was in Durango, where it was very warm, wet and spring like. The drive home seemed like I went through spring, then summer (as it got hotter during the drive), then I started going higher in elevation and experienced fall, then winter and then back to spring in Denver!! It was like going through all 4 seasons in one drive!

18th Feb 2018 16:10 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Jeffrey Anderson and I collected in the St. David area of SE Arizona and he brought over his "treasure", the long cluster of fish tail crystals he dug out with me on the last trip out to the spot. He brought if over the other day so I could get a couple of photos of it and said he would like it if I posted it since he is not on mindat. So, here is Jeffrey's piece and a wonderful one too.

19th Feb 2018 14:58 GMTMatt Courville

Very neat and strange looking. It almost looks like a fossilized fish spine from some marine creature that I would never jump into the same body of water with! Thanks for sharing.

20th Feb 2018 00:19 GMTFrank Karasti

Lutefisk...ite. Sorry I couldn’t resist.

20th Feb 2018 18:00 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


Since this is a piece that belongs to a friend, I think I will have to get me one of those lutefisk---ites. I am sure there are more- ha, don't we all wish.

22nd Feb 2018 12:12 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Quartz pseudomorph after Calcite

25th Feb 2018 00:41 GMTVma Buck

I am on the road staying where I used to live in Northern NM. So I took the dog out today to hit an old mine I know about in the mountains. I was hitting the sides of the hill where they carved out roads and walking the washes. I noticed some small plates of what I am saying is chalcedony on some crazy sandstone formation. I found a decent piece with with like little micro pockets of druzy or chalcedony (still don't know the actual difference at this point). All I know is some of the stuff did not look like quartz and that is littered all about out here.

So I find one big hunk of some form of crystal and scratch it a little and it is super soft. I can't tell at this point but it is a solid piece with points on top. I take the other hunk of matrix with the micro pockets and head home.

I had a little blacklight flashlight at home and hit this stuff and it glows pink! The solid hunk of calcite(?) is really killer but a little hazy in parts. but the fluorescing in the little micro pockets is really nice. So it is clear to hazy crystal but definitely fluoresces pink. And there is a lot more whee that came from.

This was kind of my first time out as well, so that was a nice little score I think.



Micro pockets

Micro pockets

25th Feb 2018 16:21 GMTMatt Courville

It's great that new people feel free to post here - Vma nice calcites. I believe that people get better feedback with photos vs links though, but I opened all of yours since I'm not too picky/lazy;) haha Vma - once you know the basics of the geology of where you are collecting, then you can get a very good idea of what could be found. Sometimes for new collectors, it helps to look through photos in the general area on mindat to get a feel for what is nearby.

Forgive the quick phone photos - I'll post a nice translucent aquamarine from the Beryl Pit, ON, and a tremolite which somehow remained intact in the calcite in a neat way from Musclow-Greenview roadcuts near Bancroft, ON.


1st Mar 2018 18:28 GMTScott Rider

Calumet mine -- round 2, found a nice hunk of calcite with epidote crystals poking out on the sides... I knew it was a good one as the epidote were on all sides. Here is an ACTUAL before and after images of how this material looks when pulled from the tailings, and then after maybe 5 hours in a HCl bath (anyone interested in working these specimens must take SUPREME care with HCl and calcite, this stuff fizzes like crazy and sends acid mists in the air, use caution)...




1st Mar 2018 18:33 GMTScott Rider

Here is close up. The cluster is actually almost undamaged, less 1 broken crystal in the middle. The lighter green color appears to be secondary, more gemmy growth of epidote (must more transparent). The crystals are etched as well, but most are undamaged (apart from the ones on the "rind" or edges!!

This piece literally fell on my lap. I was almost done for the day, having moved a couple tons of material (literally) and the ceiling of a deeper part of the dig collapsed and this, and I do mean literally, fell on my lap hurting my leg LOL! I immediately saw the calcite and matrix and put it aside. When I rinsed it off an hour or so later, I was shocked!! Epidote coated a thin line (see 2nd image of previous post) and I knew it would be a fantastic find!!

1st Mar 2018 19:16 GMTKevin Conroy Expert

Nice find!

1st Mar 2018 19:53 GMTScott Rider

I must give Chris Rayborn credit, he sure led me to the sweet spot at Calumet. The amount of quality specimens I've pulled out of those tailings is ludicrous!!! I have even found titanite, of which I'll post later tonight after its bath, something that apparently is really rare... But I found one specimen after another -- quality uralites, most with epidote and magnetite crystals. I think I have a couple hundred pounds to work with, and fortunately the HCl works rapidly and efficiently!! And I'll put one in a bath before work, and get really excited when I get home to see what I got!! Its like Christmas everyday!!!

3rd Mar 2018 12:40 GMTChris Rayburn

Good find Scott! Glad that spot is producing for you. If you haven't already, I recommend you soak that piece in a baking soda solution (maybe 1/2 cup per gallon) for a few hours to neutralize any remaining HCl. Some epidote plates from Calumet tend to degrade over time if you don't neutralize them.

5th Mar 2018 16:05 GMTScott Rider

Indeed, I have had it soaking in water and changed out the water about 6-7 times, and it each time there was a yellow staining to the water. I kept soaking it until the yellow went away. The only reason I didn't use baking soda is that it made a few other specimens have a white crust and I didn't want this one to turn out that way.... I may have overdone it with the baking soda however! I'll throw the epidote cluster into a baking soda bath tonight! I'll just keep the amount of baking soda low.

Would soaking it in that many water baths do the trick? Or is that just a waste of time?

6th Mar 2018 12:29 GMTChris Rayburn

Epidote, and Calumet Mine matrix, aren't water soluble, so soaking multiple times won't do any harm. Sounds like you're continuing to leach out iron oxide (guessing that's the yellow), which can only improve the specimen's appearance. I've occasionally seen the white crust you're referring to after soaking in baking soda solution. Generally a good long soak in fresh water gets rid of it, but if it's marring your specimens, either reduce the baking soda concentration or switch to fresh water. As always, test on lesser specimens if you have the option.

Is this morphing into a "Mineral Cleaning and Preparation" thread?

17th Mar 2018 17:49 GMTPeter Andresen Expert

Happy with the catch today, lots of ok chiavennite samples, some hambergite and a lot to study under the scope. This is the best chiavennite sample, approximatly 13 x 10 x 3 cm sample quite rich in orange chiavennite crystals. What looks like dings are calcite and analcime. Found in the A/S Granit quarry, Tvedalen, Larvik, Norway.

5th Apr 2018 22:01 BSTSean

Well, it's been a long time since I've posted here. So anyway, here are pictures of a rock that contains Leucites which I've found in Eifel, Germany.



5th Apr 2018 22:07 BSTSean

Keep in mind, they didn't look like this when I found them.



5th Apr 2018 22:17 BSTSean

Now here are two pictures of the same rock itself (with the Leucites) before and after it came out of a bucket of water with, big surprise, Super Iron Out.




6th Apr 2018 00:30 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


In the early 1980's I went to the Harding Mine to collect and got snowed in but was fortunate to have pretty well finished with the collecting by that time.

I am still finding flats of the material I found back then. One was a flat of fluorapatite I had stored. In it was one large piece, several pounds. I put it under the UV and it glowed all over. I split the piece to get out a few specimens to keep. This one was the largest imbedded crystal. It is the biggest one I remember finding so far.

6th Apr 2018 01:45 BSTReiner Mielke Expert

Very nice Peter! The only thing I'm "catching" here right now is snow, lots of it.

6th Apr 2018 02:41 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

First find of the 2018 season April 2,2018... just before temp. dipped again to -20C.... a 6.2cm scepter, the biggest I have found from this locality

8th Apr 2018 09:19 BSTAnna May (Anna Zellhofer)

❤️my first crystals and minerals❤️


St Mary’s county Southern MD

Easter 2018

Followed by siderite from Arbutus Canyon

April 2018

And Goethite from Oregon ridge

April 2018

9th Apr 2018 07:16 BSTDale Foster Expert

A nice little specimen of crystalline Cassiterite found at the northern end of the old mens workings in Unity Wood lying within the Unity Wood Mine sett a short distance to the south of its boundary with Killifreth Mine.

This view shows it after just having the worst of the mud washed off it:

Same specimen after cleaning:

13th Apr 2018 13:53 BSTChris Rayburn

Wulfenite coated with drusy quartz, collected a couple of weeks ago from the Finch Mine near Hayden, Arizona. 5 x 9 cm; the largest wulfenite is ~1 cm.


13th Apr 2018 13:56 BSTScott Rider

Wow what a colorful piece! Nice find Chris!!!

13th Apr 2018 22:17 BSTAaron Verrill

What an unbelievably beautiful find Chris! What kind of matrix does the druzy quartz and wulfenite occur on? Rhyolite? It looks edible!

13th Apr 2018 22:23 BSTAaron Verrill

Collected with my dirty, bloodied hands a few weeks ago. Andradite on Hedenbergite with quartz crystals sprinkled on top by mother nature. Both sides of the rock are covered with garnets.


13th Apr 2018 22:31 BSTAaron Verrill

Sorry for the poor phone picture quality. This specimen was collected in western Japan.

Here is another one from a nearby location.

13th Apr 2018 23:38 BSTChris Rayburn

Thanks Scott and Aaron! The matrix is silicified limestone. It's very hard, and the wulfenite crystals are thin and brittle. Very difficult to recover undamaged specimens

13th Apr 2018 23:41 BSTChris Rayburn

PS--beautiful andradites Aaron

14th Apr 2018 01:28 BSTSean



14th Apr 2018 01:44 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. A fresh, High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen found at Goldfield. 1” x 3/4” x 5/8”.

14th Apr 2018 15:24 BSTScott Rider

This is a find from June last year. I just trimmed and cleaned it last night. This is my favorite pseudomorph found in chalcedony geodes in Saguache County. The "caterpillar" is 5 cm long and has a coating that is fluorescent. This is quite an unusual find, as the vast majority of the pseudomorphs are just rhombs. This is the only one found like it in the many days I've dug at this location.

My guess is that there once was a rhomb that was twinned, and it just kept growing and growing into its current form.



14th Apr 2018 15:52 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This specimen was found at the Rustler #2 Mine. The ribbon of Gold is about a 1/4” wide. The Epithermal specimen contains Famatinite, Goldfieldite, Quartz, Dacite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite and Native Gold. From 1906 - 1907, over 35,000 ounces of Gold was produced at this Mine.

14th Apr 2018 17:36 BSTKeith Wood

Scott: Great specimen. Really unusual.

16th Apr 2018 09:18 BSTDale Foster Expert

A large specimen of tourmaline hornfels featuring a good sized vug of highly lustrous Cassiterite crystals, well coated in fine silt when found, this has had the benefit of protecting them from damage. Collected on 14th April 2018 from an excavation on the North Seal Hole Mine, part of the St Agnes Consols group.

Very nice specimen once cleaned:

After cleaning:

16th Apr 2018 16:34 BSTDonald B Peck Expert


17th Apr 2018 04:15 BSTScott Rider

Thanks Keith. It was the only pseudo that didn't resemble calcite.

That's a sweet cassiterite Dale.

1st May 2018 04:15 BSTGuy Davis

Found this very nice double terminated and complete beryl crystal loose in the dumps of a South Glastonbury, Connecticut feldspar quarry today.

1st May 2018 17:39 BSTScott Rider

Very nice find Guy!! I love the green color and its intact, very good find considering where you found it!!!

Here is something I found last weekend. This is a rather unusual quartz cluster from Park Co, Colorado. I found it among many other crystals, some much much bigger, but this is my favorite. The middle crystal has a neat form, and a slight goethite coating hides its gem quality. 6.5 cm tall. It has a distorted, curved microcline (I think) at its base. Cleaned only with soap, water, and my hands!!

5th May 2018 04:23 BSTMatt Courville



I had collected this years ago at the famous CN dump right in the middle of Bancroft, ON. The material is from the Golding-Keene quarry nearby which is now a provincial park. It contains blue sodalite, white nepheline and black mica. There is also traces of what is believed to be a radiactive mineral possibly containing uranium which displays as an amazing eerie green color under short-wave UV light!

If anyone ever got this fluorescing green analysed please feel free to share what exactly it is. The snow out here is finally gone and the fingernails are gettin' dirty;)

6th May 2018 18:31 BSTJason Ferguson

Most recent find. Smokey quartz player from northern CA. If I could show video I would show you more:p

7th May 2018 14:21 BSTMatt Courville

Awesome Jason! I'll have to remind myself to take a real dirty shot next time I'm out and find something decent. This below is a giant phlogopite Mica from last year. It weighs down the base of my glass shelving unit and it's a fun piece for other people to handle without the anxiety of them breaking a priceless piece! ;) ;)

7th May 2018 14:54 BSTScott Rider

Baryte from Book Cliffs, Grand Junction, Colorado. Found a nice seem in a concretion on a very steep hill. Found a dozen small crystals up to 6cm and a few plates.

11th May 2018 15:09 BSTKevin Conroy Expert

A gemmy, lustrous 6.9 cm wide "butterfly twin" calcite on sphalerite. Self-collected on my only trip into this fantastic mine.

12th May 2018 23:21 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert



These dendrites were found at the San Diego Mine, about 2 miles East of Tombstone.

The pair is one of the nicer pieces I found and it was a great surprise when I split the piece to see the two sides.

14th May 2018 03:24 BSTHoward Heitner

This is specimen of schorl in feldspar I collected on May 5, 2018 at the Hewitt quarry in Haddam, Connecticut on a field trip of the Stamford Mineralogical Society. There are not many places open to collecting in CT anymore. Hewitt is open on a fee basis to clubs.

14th May 2018 08:26 BSTDale Foster Expert


A large specimen showing coarse Cassiterite crystals lining a joint surface in metasedimentary rock that formed one side of a vein.

Collected on the 12th May from dumps of old workings of Cligga mine close to the granite-killas contact.

When first collected only a few crystals were visible, but careful removal of a chlorite/limonite vein filling that was present revealed a large number of pristine crystals up to 10mm.

An exceptional example that shows that good specimens can still be found if a bit of perseverance is applied.

14th May 2018 12:58 BSTChris Rayburn

Beautiful Dale. If you're interested in further cleaning the specimen, I'd guess that a 1-2 day soak in warm phosphoric acid (10-15%) would remove a lot of the interstitial limonite, and shouldn't harm the cassiterite or the matrix. As always, best to experiment on a lesser specimen if you have one.

15th May 2018 08:40 BSTDale Foster Expert

To be honest I am satisfied with how the specimen has cleaned up - it shows the crystallisation well yet retains the paragenesis of the later iron mineralisation - the limonite in this instance is not a dump growth secondary.

Compared to how it was when first collected it is a huge improvement.

Phosphoric acid would not be my first choice for cleaning. I have had good results with careful use of oxalic acid and citric acid and if anything is a bit more stubborn the hydrochloric acid has worked effectively.

15th May 2018 10:42 BSTChris Rayburn

Agree, it's both attractive and representative as is. Very nice find.

19th May 2018 18:39 BSTChris Rayburn

Raining in Colorado today so I'm catching up on photographing recent finds. These are galena crystals coated with linarite, brochantite and anglesite from the Blanchard Mine, Bingham, Hansonburg District, Socorro Co., New Mexico. Approximately 3.5 cm x 4 cm.

19th May 2018 19:52 BSTChris Rayburn

One more--two different views of baryte on dolostone matrix from Book Cliffs area, Grand Junction, Mesa Co., Colorado, collected in early May. The baryte cluster is 1.5 cm x 2.5 cm.


19th May 2018 20:13 BSTKevin Conroy Expert

Nice baryte! I'm glad that it stayed on the matrix, that stuff is HARD!

19th May 2018 21:49 BSTChris Rayburn

Thanks Kevin. Yes, the dolostone is very hard and the baryte is very brittle. I'd like to trim some of the dolostone on this piece (areas not shown in photos) but there's no way the baryte would survive.

20th May 2018 15:09 BSTScott Rider

Chris, I agree, I kept a few larger matrix specimens in hope to trim. But when I brought them home I could not see how to do so without damaging the baryte... That mineral is so brittle...

[attachment 75555

These two probably won't last a trim:


Got lucky with this one, the baryte survived but wasn't the most aesthetic trim:

21st May 2018 13:16 BSTChris Rayburn

A saw might work, but I don't care for the appearance of sawed pieces. I learn to love them as they are!

27th May 2018 01:16 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


At the Hilltop Mine I collected for a number of years but the road in is gated for the time being. The forest service says they will reopen the road in about a year but the road is so bad, if they don't do something on the road access will be a long hike on foot.

In the one dump was a good amount of galena and when broken open, a lot had interesting anglesite in it.

This was an odd little pocket within galena and the pocket had larger anglesite crystals that were coated by tiny, very long, pyramidal anglesite crystals. Made the pocket look fuzzy.

27th May 2018 01:55 BSTDave Owen

Is this the north fk of Pinery side? Can you still hike the road beyond the gate?

27th May 2018 18:48 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Yes, it is the Pinery Canyon side and you can still walk to the mine, maybe a 4 or 4 mile hike though. The problem of going past the gate to the small parcel of private land that cuts off the access, the people have what they called a "hunting preserve" and don't want people going through their land. "Hunting preserve" to me means people with guns!!! I am not too willing to go across land with no trespassing signs where you know people who don't want you there are armed. One can still stay in the wash past the fenced land and hike around but it is rough country and the biggest problem with the whole thing is that most of the minerals at the Hilltop are lead related minerals and very heave. To carry any amount over rough country for miles is not really worth the trip. Hope they do reopen the road, the forest service fellow I talked to said they definitely plan to reopen the road, just not very soon.

31st May 2018 03:48 BSTSean

Here are my first finds for this year.

Note: This Spinel is the size of a die.



These Spinels, that I've found on the day that I went to Des Cedres Dam, were mostly around 5-6mm. The best one was like 1.5cm. Most of the good stuff are completely stuck on the boulders at the occerance. It's one of those locations that requires advanced tools like a big chisel and an electric drill. Right now, one of the other findings that I've found on that day is in a small container of vinegar.

1st Jun 2018 19:37 BSTScott Rider

On a club trip, found a very small vug that had a couple fluorite cubes. This was the largest, its little over 2cm and its on the host rock of the vug. I like the yellow, lilac and blue hues within the crystal. Its quite gemmy too, but the luster is slightly muted. It has little round spots on the surface, probably from goethite. However, it cleaned off with just soap and water!


Behind some of the pegmatite was the tiny vug. It was just big enough to form the fluorite, a few smokies up to 1.5 cm, and some curved microcline. Unfortunately, after 2 days of digging, all that was found was this little vug. I did find a good pocket about a month ago in the same spot, but the peg appears to be thinning out in all directions. So it appears this spot is done...

2nd Jun 2018 03:34 BSTGuy Davis

1.5" long nicely striated and complete schorl crystal in a small calcite pod in traprock with the termination of another small crystal visible. Self collected many years ago from a small find at the Lafarge quarry in Churchville, Maryland. It now resides in its final resting place in the dry-stacked retaining wall I built behind my house. The 5' black rat snake in the third pic is for scale.



3rd Jun 2018 22:30 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert



These two azurite pieces I collected twice, first time at the Last Chance Mine in Courtland Arizona back in the 1970's and had a pile on our back yard with ores from there. Yesterday I brought in two boxes of the dirty old pieces and put them through the sonic cleaner and then split what looked good on the outside. These two were in a couple of the specimens. Kind of fun to think of them lying out on the mine dumps for many years, then in our pile for many more years and they were still very nice inside. I was happy and they went in my main collection.

4th Jun 2018 02:45 BSTJon Aurich

. Another beautiful High Grade Gold Specimen from Goldfield Nevada. Found June 3rd, 2018. The Specimen contains Famatinite, Alunite, Goldfieldite, Bismuthinite, Quartz, Milltown Andesite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold. The orange color to the left is Native Gold. 1 3/4” x 3/4” x 1/2”.....

6th Jun 2018 12:51 BSTChris Rayburn

As a fanatical field collector, I really enjoy reading and contributing to this thread. Keep the specimens coming everyone!

Jon, I'm amazed by the gold specimens you continue to turn up from Goldfield. It's inspiring to know that such specimens are still out there to be found.

6th Jun 2018 17:45 BSTKyle Bayliff

His last name is "Au"rich after all ;D

6th Jun 2018 17:53 BSTScott Rider

Good one Kyle!! That is truly a fitting name considering what he's been posting!!

6th Jun 2018 17:59 BSTJon Aurich

Thank you Chris !! I am fortunate to have the opportunity to find these rare Sulphide-Gold specimens. Years ago, when I was able to get down into a couple of the rich mines with confidence of safety, I would come upon “Back fills” in some old abandoned drifts that would have numerous pieces of high grade ore. Since some of the sorting or “cobbing” of ore was done underground, it was difficult for the miner to be efficient in the process since the rock was covered with a wet clay and the illumination used was Candles. It’s amazing for me to think that a lot of rich ore is still down in the rich mines in the Goldfield district and mixed in with those backfills that were abandoned from 1904 - 1908.

6th Jun 2018 18:10 BSTJon Aurich

I have had many Geologists through the years, tell me that wished that they had that name.......

6th Jun 2018 22:52 BSTJason Ferguson

So I did a video to share with my friends and forgot to do regular photos. I'm hoping these screenshots will be equally as amazing, if not, i post the higher quality video else where just ask. This Smokey Quartz plate is the same one I posted earlier on the thread but now it is cleaned! Enjoy!


6th Jun 2018 23:15 BSTScott Rider

So jealous Jason! You've been hitting some serious amazing pockets lately! That monster Smoky from last year is pretty sweet as well! Was that from Taylor O's claim in Devil's Head?

As for the current finds, I'd love to see some in-situ images. Do you have any? If so, put them in my Collected with your dirty hands; In-Situ version. I have seen your cave pictures, but I'd love to see these guys before you yank them out!!!

Also, if you are ever in CO let me know! I'm always looking to dig with new people as I keep learning new things when I do that!!! PM if you do come to my neck of the woods.

7th Jun 2018 02:03 BSTJon Aurich

This piece of High Grade Gold was found today, June 6th, 2018. It contains Bismuthinite, Quartz, Alunite, Famatinite, Goldfieldite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Milltown Andesite and Native Gold. Goldfield Nevada.

7th Jun 2018 13:34 BSTChris Rayburn

Beautiful color on those smokies Jason. Obviously they're a bit younger than our jet black smokies in Colorado.

7th Jun 2018 15:11 BSTJason Ferguson

Scott, thanks for the love. Yea the jet black ones from last year are from the original pocket Taylor, AJ and I discovered at Devil's Head. I private messages you on FB with videos and photos of what that plate looked like coming out of the ground. I will be in Colorado in a few weeks but will be helping a friend with his amethyst mining operation down in the southern portion of the state so I doubt I will he able to get up to where you are.

Chris, definitely younger as these Crystal's come from California, the land being pushed out of the water I'm assuming long after the Rockies where being formed. Thanks for the love, will be taking one more stab at my digging area before Colorado amethyst trip until September when it cools down!

7th Jun 2018 15:11 BSTJason Ferguson

Scott, thanks for the love. Yea the jet black ones from last year are from the original pocket Taylor, AJ and I discovered at Devil's Head. I private messages you on FB with videos and photos of what that plate looked like coming out of the ground. I will be in Colorado in a few weeks but will be helping a friend with his amethyst mining operation down in the southern portion of the state so I doubt I will he able to get up to where you are.

Chris, definitely younger as these Crystal's come from California, the land being pushed out of the water I'm assuming long after the Rockies where being formed. Thanks for the love, will be taking one more stab at my digging area before Colorado amethyst trip until September when it cools down!

7th Jun 2018 15:44 BSTScott Rider

Nice! If I am correct, you're probably talking about the AJ's scepter amethyst spot! I've seen what he's pulling out of there, he definitely found a great area. They are probably my 2nd favorite amethyst from Colorado now, next to some of the older Red Feather finds! The huge scepter he found last year was pretty sweet! He needs to post some images once the spot stops producing!!

8th Jun 2018 23:03 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This beautiful High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen was found on June 8th, 2018. The specimen contains Bismuthinite, Quartz, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Famatinite, Milltown Andesite and Native Gold.

8th Jun 2018 23:58 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi John,

Seems to be a fabulous specimen! Can you point out the famatinite? Which is the Milltown andesite? Which is the bismuthinite in this piece?

David K Joyce

9th Jun 2018 01:40 BSTJon Aurich

Thank you David !! The Bismuthinite and Famatinite are in the darker portion of the specimen, sometimes, the Famatinite Bismuthinite are more pronounced, as it was for the specimen that I put on two days ago. My phone camera doesn’t do a good job with focusing close. If you want to see more pronounced Famatinite and Bismuthinite in the Goldfield specimens, I can put some examples on...... The Milltown Andesite is at the bottom left of the specimen.

9th Jun 2018 01:53 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

I would like to see more pronounced famatimite and bismuthinite!

David K Joyce

9th Jun 2018 02:02 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Bismuthinite. Needles up to 1/4” long.....

9th Jun 2018 02:08 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. The dark areas are Famatinite with Native Gold. Generally, most of the High Grade Gold Specimens from Goldfield have Famatinite.

9th Jun 2018 02:14 BSTJon Aurich

That last Specimen also shows needles of Bismuthinite.

9th Jun 2018 02:22 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Famatinite is a relatively rare mineral. Have you had analyses done to substantiate that some or all of the dark mineral is famatinite? Do you ever see any secondary copper minerals in the upper reaches of the veins/mines on your property?

David K. Joyce

9th Jun 2018 02:41 BSTJon Aurich

No, I haven’t did any analysis on the ore, Many Geologist’s through the years have identified the Famatinite in this rich ore from the Florence Mine. If you PM me, I will send you a nice sample of Famatinite, as long as you are in the U.S.

9th Jun 2018 02:42 BSTJon Aurich

I meant to say “done”....

9th Jun 2018 03:21 BSTBob Harman

Please correct me if I am wrong as I am no expert, but doing some in depth research into Goldfield Nevada and its gold mining history I found the following.

There was a very brief gold mining boom in the early years of the 20th century. The boom did not last long, especially after the town burned in a 1923 fire. It was noted that, while there was gold to be found in that area, it was difficult and expensive to mine (at least at that time) as the ore was contaminated or mixed with brine. Commercial gold mining has not occurred in the area of Goldfield in nearly 100 years, so it is not like the mines have recently shut down. Actually, I couldn't find evidence of much specimen mining until your recent attempts from the land/mine that you appear to own. All your specimens seem to be from the 1 mine or localized area containing the same minerals in varying proportions in each of the pictured examples. Please correct me if I am substantially wrong.

Today the town of Goldfield is considered a ghost town (about 200+ residents in the 2010 census). There have been several attempts to resurrect the town as a mining and tourist destination, but there has been some local and state disagreements so not much concerted efforts have gotten very far. Anything to add? CHEERS.....BOB

9th Jun 2018 03:38 BSTJon Aurich

In 1908, The Goldfield Consolidated Mill processed Oxide, and Sulphide ore to a recovery between 94% - 96%. The other mills in the district did fairly well also, using Amalgamation and Cyanidation. The district is still regarded as one of the highest grade Gold deposits for its size in the world, over 4 million ounces of Gold in less than 200 acres... some of the ore ran over 2800 ounces to the ton....

9th Jun 2018 03:58 BSTBob Harman

Yes Jon, just as we noted. The gold bearing ore was high grade. The boom started rapidly and the mines produced significant amounts of gold, but just for a very brief time. The gold bearing ore body was small and localized and expensive to mine so, after just a few years, the amount produced dropped just as rapidly. Within a very few years the gold seekers had moved on and virtually all mining ceased. As I noted on a commercial scale, even small time, not much has happened in the almost 100 years since.

As an addendum. For gold mining, it all boils down to how much is there in the ground to be mined, exactly what is the ore type, and how much will it cost to bring it out of the ground and refine it. Money, money ,money. When not found to be commercially viable since the original short lived boom, the area was abandoned. So currently with gold at $1300/oz, advanced mining technology in use, and commercial mines currently operating at several western sites, I still see no evidence of recent commercial gold mining interest in that area.

Don't get me wrong, I still think all your specimens are very interesting on this thread. CHEERS.......BOB

9th Jun 2018 07:58 BSTJon Aurich

Not just interesting Bob, Rare. There is still Gold to be produced, as we speak, there are drillers right now, running 2 shifts at 24 hours a day, running now about two months. Ore has been located under the interstate highway that has already been ok’d by the State of Nevada to move the highway, when it happens is everyone’s guess. Commercial Gold started in the Goldfield district in 1904, Goldfield Consolidated operated it’s mines until the end of 1918. So major production in Goldfield lasted a good 14 years. What makes these rich mines so interesting is that the rich ore was erratic, in “Pipes” or “lenses” they were like “raisins in a pudding”, all it takes is two or three tons of a lense that could produce millions at today’s prices. It’s there in that district and more will eventually be found. As far as a non commercially productive district today, I’m glad that it’s not, just having a historical district like Goldfield, is enough for me, and where else can you find Famatinite, Alunite, Goldfieldite, Bismuthinite, Milltown Andesite and Native Gold all in one place ?? Goldfield.....

9th Jun 2018 13:32 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Actually, one of the more popular exploration models these days is to look for large, low grade mineralized halos, at or near surface, around old high grade deposits with the intent to mine them using high volume, low unit cost surface mining techniques. This technique has been successful in a number of places in the world, resulting is successful mines that operate at 1-2 grams per tonne as opposed to the more normal 10-15 grams per tonne required for a successful underground mining operation. Sheds a different light on old, high grade, small deposit past-producing mining camps. Sometimes an economic halo is there and sometimes not.

David K Joyce

9th Jun 2018 13:33 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Sorry, didn't mean to hijack the thread but the discussion went that way!

David K Joyce

10th Jun 2018 04:22 BSTPhilip Simmons

Hi Jon,

Is there significance to Milltown andesite? You mention it in many of your posts as something of note, so what distinguishes it from any other andesite?

Phil Simmons

10th Jun 2018 05:40 BSTJon Aurich

The two significant things with this Andesite is that it was named before the discovery of Gold at Milltown which the Florence Mine borders, it was originally thought that Dacite was the country rock that only carried rich ore and the Milltown Andesite area of the district was free of Gold, the original mining engineers were proven wrong. I state the names of the contents of this ore as it is properly identified in the Ramsome Report of 1909. Maybe I should just shorten the Local Name of the Andesite to just Andesite, I just thought that there was a good reason that the engineers named this Andesite with a specific name.

11th Jun 2018 09:04 BSTDale Foster Expert

Getting back on topic.

I found this specimen at Poldice Mine on Saturday the 9th June:

It had been broken apart and the half with the greater number of crystals was just sitting on the dump in plain view, the crytals are razor sharp and have a very high lustre.

The other half of the piece was found after a short search. Odd that someone had broken it then left it, as it is a stunning specimen with crystals to around 2.5mm.

A return visit on Sunday the 10th yielded this:

A large hand specimen with crystals to 4mm, this one took a lot more finding as was absolutely filthy when discovered, but has cleaned up well.

11th Jun 2018 20:19 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This specimen shows Bismuthinite, Alunite and Quartz. Found on June 11th, 2018. 1 1/4” x 1” x 1”.

11th Jun 2018 20:31 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This specimen contains Famatinite, Dacite, Quartz and Alunite. Specimen stained by Sulphides and outside elements on a tailing pile. Found on June 11th, 2018.

11th Jun 2018 21:59 BSTGuy Davis

Two views of a very sharp, highly lustrous 1cm titanite self-collected several years ago at the Fanny Frost quarry in Davis, Howard County, Maryland. Operated in the early part of the 20th century, feldspar was quarried here from a pegmatite intrusion in the Cockeysville Marble.


12th Jun 2018 06:13 BSTPhilip Simmons

Thanks for the specific info, Jon. That clarifies the term for me.


12th Jun 2018 07:14 BSTJon Aurich

Philip, Thank you for being interested.

12th Jun 2018 19:34 BSTJon Aurich


. Goldfield Nevada. This exceedingly rich Epithermal high grade Gold specimen was found on June 12th, 2018 at the Rustler #2 Mine at Goldfield. It contains Alunite, Bismuthinite, Quartz, Famatinite, Milltown Andesite and Native Gold. 3/4” x 5/8” x 1/2”. One photo is using flash and the other, natural light. I used my cell phone.

12th Jun 2018 20:48 BSTScott Rider

Jon, nice piece there! It looks almost like a slice of bread with golden butter!

12th Jun 2018 21:02 BSTJon Aurich

Thanks Scott, it does look good enough to eat !!

15th Jun 2018 23:40 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. This specimen was found on June 15th, 2018. It contains a nice vein of Famatinite with Quartz, Milltown Andesite and Dacite. From the famous Rustler #2 Mine. 1 1/2” x 1 1/4” x 1”..

16th Jun 2018 05:02 BSTJoshua Frank

A decent little smoky quartz cluster found up above crystal ridge in the Inyo Mtns, east of Independence, CA

16th Jun 2018 06:13 BSTJoshua Frank

Some cleaned up specimens from the basalt outcrops west of Acton, CA...

The vugs and pockets in the basalt offer quartz crystals and zeolites. Found in float and in exposed basalt outcrops.

1" machine screw for scale. ...



18th Jun 2018 08:26 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This rare specimen was found on June 17th, 2018 at the Rustler #2 Mine, part of the Florence Mine. This High Grade Epithermal Specimen contains Dacite, Quartz, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Alunite, Famatinite and Native Gold. 1 1/4” x 1” x 1”.

19th Jun 2018 02:54 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This fantastic specimen was found on June 17th, 2018. The High Grade Gold Ore was exceedingly rich in the Florence, Red Top, Clermont, Mohawk, Jumbo and January Mines. These Mines were famous around the world from 1904 - 1910.

19th Jun 2018 16:41 BSTScott Rider

Houselog Creek, Saguache Co. Colorado, here's a 1cm rhomb pseudomorph of chalcedony after calcite. It's more of a deep blue than black of which this camera couldn't produce very well. It was found face first in the sandy debris of the tailings. I like the multitude of little rhombs on the surface, and an odd shaped Crystal next to it, as well as the contrast of the pseudo to the white chalcedony matrix.




22nd Jun 2018 07:54 BSTDon Windeler

A couple of weeks ago I had the privilege of poking around at the Royal Scepter claim on Peterson Mt., Washoe Co., Nevada -- soon to be renamed the Foster Hallman claim. As usual (4 times of 5) my son Forrest kicked my butt in overall quality and quantity of haul, but I did hit one pocket with matrix material -- fairly uncommon.

I'm still trying to clean and trim to maximize this piece's potential, but here's snap of my best find. Not obvious from the photo, but it's three pieces held or glued together.

About 30 x 17 cm, with the major quartz to the left about 11 cm long. The annoying part is that I brought home an entire flat of points from the pocket and (aside from that big crystal) none matched up with gaps on the matrix. Arrgh!



23rd Jun 2018 01:22 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

I had the pleasure of being on the mapping team for the Oroville Spillway repair last year. These sites are now under 10-150 feet of concrete, and I had to collect between blasting and cleaning crews stomping over them.

Quartz from the Oroville Spillway, Oroville, Ca, USA. These were etched from calcite.



23rd Jun 2018 01:25 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

More from the spillway.

Stilbite with laumontite (I think)

Calcite with stilbite and laumontite (I think)


23rd Jun 2018 21:59 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This exceedingly rich high grade Gold specimen was found not too long ago. It was cut to show the richness of the Goldfield Ores, this specimen would Assay at well over 2,000 ounces per ton.... The dark areas are Famatinite and Bismuthinite, the white areas are Alunite and Quartz. From the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines.

24th Jun 2018 03:09 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hello Brad, thank you for posting. - think you are new poster, nice finds.

24th Jun 2018 13:11 BSTChris Rayburn

Indeed, welcome Brad. It sounds like your finds were a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. Well done rescuing them.

Don, congratulations on the opportunity to collect at the Royal Scepter. I love complex crystal clusters like the one in your photo. It looks almost lifelike!

24th Jun 2018 17:05 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Another great find. There are not too many places to where you can find this type of Sulphide rich ore with Native Gold. This specimen contains Quartz, Famatinite, Goldfieldite, Alunite, Dacite, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold.

30th Jun 2018 19:32 BSTJon Aurich

. Historic Goldfield Nevada. This great specimen was found on: June 29th, 2018. It contains Quartz, Bismuthinite, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Famatinite, Dacite and Native Gold. 1 1/2” x 1” x 3/8”.

5th Jul 2018 01:36 BSTJon Aurich

. Historic Florence and Rustler #2 Mines at Goldfield Nevada. This great specimen was found on July 4th, 2018. It contains Quartz, Famatinite, Dacite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite, Alunite and Native Gold.

5th Jul 2018 02:39 BSTPaul Brandes Manager

Neat piece, Jon!

What's the size on that last one from July 4?

5th Jul 2018 07:41 BSTJon Aurich

Thanks Paul !! The specimen measures at 1 1/2” x 1/2” x 1”..... The Gold that you see goes all the way through to the other side .....

5th Jul 2018 15:59 BSTDonald B Peck Expert


The pieces you have been posting photos of are fabulous! I wonder if your success has anything to do with your surname?

5th Jul 2018 18:13 BSTDonald Lapham

Fluorite collected yesterday, July 4, 2018, at the Flamboro, Ontario, Canada Dufferin Quarry:



5th Jul 2018 19:21 BSTWayne Corwin


That wrench looks kind of small for unscrewing those bigger Fluorites!


5th Jul 2018 23:20 BSTJon Aurich

Hi Donald, my name would have been great for a top notch Geologist, working for a world class mining company. but the rare specimens are are found by having the opportunity to harvest them at the Florence and Rustler #2 Mines. These very important mines are the only two High Grade properties in the Goldfield Mining district that still have their original lease era tailing piles, the other 6 rich mines have either been open pit mined or had their original lease tailing piles stripped. This photo shows a nice piece of Goldfield Nevada High Grade that was just found today.. July 5th, 2018.

5th Jul 2018 23:45 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. This great High Grade Gold specimen was found on July 5th, 2018. It shows the classic Epithermal distribution of the Gold and Sulphide bearing solutions around Dacite and Milltown Andesite fragments. The specimen contains Famatinite, Goldfieldite, Quartz, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Alunite, Dacite, Milltown Andesite and Native Gold. The needles of Bismuthinite have long since oxidized away, leaving a white shell of where the Bismuthinite once was.

7th Jul 2018 01:49 BSTMatt Courville

I'd like to share some photos of my trip to the Hooper Mine in New York State's Adirondack Park. The mine was mined for industrial grade garnet to be used in sandpaper. Mr. Hooper later went to work at the well known Barton Garnet mine a few miles away. There is still garnet mining done nearby slightly north of Hooper mine. I cannot find a way to trim down the photos, so I'll post in two separate posts.



7th Jul 2018 01:51 BSTMatt Courville




7th Jul 2018 02:30 BSTRobert Rothenberg

Nice images; suggest you post some of them to the Hooper Mine page.


7th Jul 2018 02:53 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. From the famous Engineers Lease of the Florence Mine. This Epithermal Sulphide Specimen contains a 1/4” seam of Famatinite. It also contains Quartz, Alunite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold. Found on July 6th, 2018.

7th Jul 2018 04:01 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. From the famous Little Florence Lease of the Florence Mine. These great specimens show needles of Bismuthinite, some of the needles are 3/16” in length. The specimen also contains Famatinite, Quartz, Dacite and Native Gold. Found on July 6th, 2018.

7th Jul 2018 22:37 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. What a fantastic rare specimen !! The Famatinite is so rich that it is giving off a blue color with the Needles of Bismuthinite. The Native Gold is incredibly rich, could Assay at well over 1000 ounces per ton !! Found on July 2nd, 2018. Has. 2” x 1 1/2” x 1/4”.... Extracted from the famous Rustler #2 Mine.

8th Jul 2018 20:30 BSTMatt Courville

Here are some recent finds from the Kaladar marble quarry. I was hoping for the apparent emerald green diopside to 10 cm long as per Ann Sabina's guide. This is what is typical of the locality (actinolite-tremolite) which is similar in appearance to Grace Lake Occ. a few hours west, and possibly some talc (grey colored) . A neat spot with some ruins still intact nonetheless;)



9th Jul 2018 04:55 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. There is no other Epithermal High Grade Gold that comes close to the beauty of this rich ore at Goldfield. Found on July 8th, 2018. The specimen contains Famatinite, Alunite, Goldfieldite, Quartz, Bismuthinite, Dacite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold.

9th Jul 2018 17:00 BSTJon Aurich


. Goldfield Nevada. This High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen was found last week,

It is from the famous Rogers Lease of the Rustler #2 Mine. What a difference a polish makes to a specimen, especially High Grade Gold from the Goldfield mining district......

10th Jul 2018 06:35 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This exceedingly rich High Grade Gold Specimen is from the famous Rogers Lease of the Rustler #2 Mine. The specimen is rich in Famatinite, Bismuthinite and Native Gold. It also contains Quartz, Alunite, Goldfieldite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Dacite. Found on July 9th, 2018.

10th Jul 2018 15:51 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hackmanite with strong fluorescence under long wave UV. From the Bancroft area.

10th Jul 2018 17:27 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This rare High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen is from the famous Little Florence Lease of the Florence Mine. It contains Quartz, Milltown Andesite, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz Dacite and Native Gold. There is an odd design of Famatinite above the Native Gold at top. Found on July 8th, 2018.

11th Jul 2018 19:00 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Bonanza Ore. High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen. This great specimen contains Quartz, Alunite, Famatinite, Dacite, Bismuthinite Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold. From the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines.

12th Jul 2018 19:06 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. A choice High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen that contains Famatinite, Quartz, Alunite, Dacite, Bismuthinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold. Found on July 11th, 2018 at the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines.

12th Jul 2018 19:24 BSTJeff Weissman Expert

Jon, I am really enjoying your finds. But I am curious, how come these never found their way to the crusher?

12th Jul 2018 19:51 BSTJon Aurich

Well Jeff, these Mines had a lot of clay in their country rock, it was also very wet, so when the miners would Cobb their ore underground, separating the ore from the waste rock, it was hard to fully separate this combination with candle light and the wet clay covering everything. They recovered a lot of it a few years later when the superintendent of the Florence, got the idea of using a water hose and spraying down the waste piles, yielding over $15,000 worth of High Grade just on the Little Florence waste piles alone. I am in a rare position, the Florence is the only mine in the rich district of Goldfield that still has its pre 1908 Lease waste piles, the piles of the Rustler #2, the Rogers, Engineers, Hall, Little Florence and Mohawk Florence are still intact.... I show my finds on Mindat, Google Plus and special events at Goldfield. The ore is unique.....

12th Jul 2018 20:36 BSTBob Harman


I too was curious so I did an in depth look at the history of that mining area. If you go back to about June 6 on this thread you will see my posting. Basically there was a real gold rush with significant production for about 15 years between about 1905 and 1920. The commercial ore body was found to be small and the ore was expensive to extract and refine. The miners and companies then moved on. A 1923 fire destroyed most of the remaining town; Goldfield Nevada is now a ghost town.

There has been no commercial mining since the 1920s, in fact, except for Jon who now owns the land and mine area there has been little to no specimen mining/collecting in that area. Therefore you also don't see many specimens from that locality either in collections or in dealer stocks. Since my first posting in June, I have spoken to a gold mining geologist at one of the major US gold producers. He said the companies are aware of that area and orebody, but multiple modern hi tech studies seem to reconfirm the ore body being small and of a type that is difficult to refine, hence being non-commercial to most modern mining companies. There has been no commercial mining in the area in nearly 100 years.

Never-the-less, Jon's finds are remarkable and interesting. CHEERS......BOB

12th Jul 2018 21:06 BSTJon Aurich

Here is what Goldfield Specimens bring in value. These are less than three ounce specimens with maybe $100 of Gold value in them. But they are rare.

12th Jul 2018 21:07 BSTJon Aurich

Florence Mine.

12th Jul 2018 21:27 BSTJon Aurich

With the specimen values at 17 and 46 times it’s value in Gold, about a half ton of it will do me fine !!

12th Jul 2018 21:52 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert


Sure would be nice if you could give a dimension when posting pics. Hard to know if they are 15mm or 15cm!

Best, David K. Joyce

12th Jul 2018 21:58 BSTBob Harman

JON, As I have previously noted......really interesting and nice finds and with potential nice rewards.

Like DAVID K J, I also have a question. Most of your postings show slabbed examples. How are these being found? Are they from differing dump sites and then slabbed, slabbed from the same or adjacent boulders, or nearby areas in the mine itself or ????? CHEERS......BOB

12th Jul 2018 22:19 BSTJon Aurich

David, what would really be nice to know, is how the analysis went on those specimens that I sent you. Jon.

12th Jul 2018 22:21 BSTAlfredo Petrov Manager

"High grade" ore is wonderful stuff for mineral collectors and museums, but of little interest to modern mining companies because of the fact already mentioned, the typically small size of the orebodies. And add to that the problems like irregular distribution, complex chemistry, safety issues of working where there is already a rabbit warren of poorly mapped underground diggings, etc.

12th Jul 2018 22:22 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Jon, No results yet. I'll let you know as soon as I receive them.

David K. joyce

12th Jul 2018 22:35 BSTJon Aurich

Alfredo, High Grade Ore is great for me. I don’t understand why people bring up commercial value of the mine, I’m not here to sell it or try to promote it, only as a Mine of historic value. Although, I’m sure that a Mining Company would love to uncover another small mine like the Florence, one that produced over 650 million dollars in today’s prices !! Not a bad haul for a small Mine........

12th Jul 2018 22:36 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert


ANY mining company LOVES high grade if there is enough of it to mine profitably. They will find a way to mine it safely and efficiently. I have had many prospectors come to me (in my old mining role), wild-eyed with a piece of high grade. I just ask them how many tons of it are there? What is the potential for tonnage? There are many veins that have a glob of gold here or there that, as grab samples, are "high grade". When the same sample taken in context of the entire vein or veins, the average grade is often low grade or no-grade. Many mining companies have undertaken drill programs on the basis of high grade gold samples only to find out that there are not enough tons to mine profitably. The gold is there, just not profitable enough quantity to undetake the permitting, environmental analyses, bulk analyses, engineering, financing and legal costs. There are more factors but you get the idea.

Goldcorp found one of the highest grade orebodies ever found 20 or so years ago. Many millions of troy ounces in a relatively small volume of an orebody. They started mining at average head grades of 2.5 oz/tonne or so. Locally, the ore ran a thousand ounces Au per ton. That high grade orebody resulted in the grounding for one of the largest gold mining companies in the world.

Don't get me wrong! I love high grade gold and silver samples, especially from historic mining camps. They are usually relics though and not representative of value of the deposits today.

David K. Joyce

Best, David K Joyce

12th Jul 2018 22:46 BSTJon Aurich

Mr. Harman, the ore is slabbed to show maximum features of the ore. These specimens are found in different areas of many piles. The complex distribution of the Gold and Sulphides is interesting to me, Gold can be found in the Famatinite alone or just with the Quartz, it can be just associated with the Bismuthinite, It could Just be in combination with Goldfieldite. It could be in one Sulphide or all of them together. The ore is in many different associations, and that is only the Florence Property, there are many more different associations of the ores in the other rich mines of this district.

12th Jul 2018 22:54 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield was a great mining district. It may still hold the record for the highest average of Gold production, 7.5 million tons of ore with an average value over one half ounce per ton. 97% of that value came from an area of less than 200 acres in size. This Epithermal deposit had an overall maximum depth of 500 feet.

12th Jul 2018 23:28 BSTAlfredo Petrov Manager

Yes, David, I'm sure Sumitomo is happy to have the Hishikari deposit, and I'm sure any mining company would indeed love a giant high-grade deposit, but how often do they find one? Most of the time their accountants would rather they worked a more large-scale low-grade deposit with a predictable cash flow than a small irregular deposit. And it's very lucky for we collectors that the big corporations don't take much interest in the small high-grade deposits, otherwise all our nice specimens would've been crushed before we could get our hands on them. I'm in no way disparaging the specimens, just thankful that no big mining corporation would be interested in them.

12th Jul 2018 23:31 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Jon, you're saying that there were 3.75 million ounces or so mined there? Didn't realize it was that large of a producer.

David K Joyce

12th Jul 2018 23:37 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert


By my figuring, there seemed to be one larger, high grade Au deposit found about every 10 years or so SOMEwhere. Goldstrike, Red Lake, Fruta del Norte. Anyway, mining companies explore and whatever they find, they find. If it is not a big enough deposit for the bigger companies, they sell it off to the mid-tier or smaller mining companies. It is tough to make a mine happen these days no matter what size of deposit or company!

David K Joyce

12th Jul 2018 23:43 BSTJon Aurich

4.5 million ounces....

12th Jul 2018 23:45 BSTJon Aurich

Alfredo, much easier when rich, small and close to the surface..

13th Jul 2018 00:04 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

That is pretty cool!

13th Jul 2018 00:19 BSTJon Aurich

It was quite a place. Some of the ore ran over 2,800 OT !! And a lot of it was 20-60-120 OT ore !!! I just like the history of that district and it should be celebrated !!

13th Jul 2018 00:26 BSTJon Aurich

It’s amazing to think that the little (non commercial) area could produce 5.4 Billion Dollars at today’s prices !!$$$

13th Jul 2018 00:36 BSTPaul Brandes Manager

I will have to introduce my wife to this thread, who is an avid Goldfield historian and wrote the description for the Goldfield page here on Mindat (

I wonder if there shouldn't be a new, separate thread solely on Goldfield since so many folks seem to be interested in this fascinating place...

13th Jul 2018 00:42 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Goldfields was a real mining camp with "jewelry stopes" by the sounds of it. On average though it is not what I would call a "high grade" operation, other than the high grade zones. To operate an underground mine you need a few million tons of 0.35-0.45 oz/ton to be modestly profitable, these days. We used to say 0.5 oz/ton was a good grade for an underground mining operation. The "high grade" underground mines that Alfredo and I have been speaking have an average grade measured in ounces per ton. Red Lake was 2.5 oz/ton in the first decade or so. The Hishikari underground mine is about 1.3 oz per ton and has been running at that for many years. Goldfields averaged 0.6 troy ounces per ton. That is "good" average grade ore. No doubt there were high grade pockets/stopes/zones in it. Most mines have those. Open pit mines are a different story and can be profitable at 1-2gm per ton (0.06 oz per ton!) with very high tonnages and economy of scale (60-100,000tons per day operation). There are lots of variables.

Bottom line is, Jon, that the Goldfields district sounds like a good grade mining area with some nice, really high grade zones. Either that or, if 7.5 million tons were mined, I'm missing something.

Keep finding that high grade!

David K. Joyce

13th Jul 2018 01:17 BSTJon Aurich

7.5 million tons = 5.4 Billion, nothing to miss there ...... also, The Goldfield Consolidated Mines Company stated that over one million dollars alone was stolen (High Graded) at the Mohawk Mine in 1907, and 1.5 million was estimated stolen at the Florence, Red Top, Jumbo and January Mines, that would total at around 125,000 ounces that were stolen, with a value of today at about 170 million dollars !!!!! A lot of Gold...

13th Jul 2018 02:18 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Another great find. A High Grade Gold Specimen from the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines. This specimens association with Sulphides and Native Gold are different from the last specimens that were posted. Fantastic ore. 1” x 1” x 1/4”.....

14th Jul 2018 23:03 BSTMatt Courville

Jon, perhaps you could post nice photos of the mine and context of where you are finding these - with all of the dirt/mud as you have mentioned previously. I'm confident others will appreciate them;)

14th Jul 2018 23:41 BSTJon Aurich

Hello Matt, I can post photos of the mines and the colors of the waste piles on where some of the specimens are coming from. Backfills from underground are another area. I have to limit exact locations of certain piles as people will tend to Trespass without asking permission to enter and dig holes in the piles. I myself, do not even dig the piles, only surface harvesting, as I want to keep the dumps in original condition.....

15th Jul 2018 00:03 BSTJon Aurich

. The historic Florence Mine as it stands today. The huge waste piles are still intact with all the original buildings and equipment..

15th Jul 2018 00:27 BSTJon Aurich

. The famous Rustler #2 Mine of the Florence group of Mines. As shown Today. All of the original Lease Dumps are still intact.

15th Jul 2018 00:31 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Sulphide Rich ore like Alunite and Famatinite are shown in the large piles.

15th Jul 2018 00:33 BSTJon Aurich

Sorry about the photos being sideways, when you click on them, they will be correct. I put them on correctly.....

15th Jul 2018 00:35 BSTJon Aurich

. Sulphide ore in the piles.

15th Jul 2018 00:39 BSTJon Aurich

. Huge waste piles. 60 feet in height..

15th Jul 2018 01:45 BSTKeith Wood


Underground mining is getting head grades down to as low as 0.15 ounce per ton range these days using modern mining methods and open stope methods. However, this is in bulk tonnage deposits like Carlin deposits. Vein mines generally still need higher grades.

The mines at Goldfield were very high grade, and the district produced about 4 million ounces. ANY company would be delighted to find such a deposit, as higher grades mean lower costs per ounce.


15th Jul 2018 02:27 BSTPaul Brandes Manager

Doesn't seem like much has changed since the last time we were out there a couple years ago. I'm hoping to get back out that way around the first of the year....

15th Jul 2018 06:28 BSTJon Aurich

Hi Keith, I was hoping that others like you would realize the wealth that was generated from this district. Over 4.5 million ounces were recovered , but even more was produced but stolen through High Grading, estimates range well over 125,000 ounces were stolen during the boom era. Others on this thread have said that the ore was hard to recover the Gold, the right Mill was built and its recovery was between 94% - 96%, a pretty high yield I think...

15th Jul 2018 06:51 BSTJon Aurich

Paul, the only thing that has changed is the the buildings of the Rustler #2 have been totally restored.......

15th Jul 2018 06:55 BSTJon Aurich

Goldfield Nevada. Florence Mine waste piles, with a depth of about 60 feet.

17th Jul 2018 03:24 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. This High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen is from the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines. The Native Gold is associated with Famatinite, Cryptocrystalline Quartz, Bismuthinite and Quartz. The specimen also contains Dacite Alunite and Milltown Andesite. Found on July 15th, 2018. 5/8” x 5/8” x 3/16”..

17th Jul 2018 13:46 BSTChris Rayburn

I took a rare summer trip to New Mexico last weekend (usually a winter destination for me) and collected at the Blanchard Mine in Socorro County. We chose an outcrop of silicified limestone just outside the main adits. After a half-hour of sledge and chisel work, I opened a crack and was able to lift a large slab off of the top of the outcrop. Underneath was a wide seam of fluorite and baryte with numerous vugs. Bingo! We recovered dozens of nice fluorite plates, baryte clusters and combos. Photos show:

IMG_1550: The fluorite/baryte seam, just after I uncovered it

IMG_1551: The underside of the slab that covered the seam

IMG_1553: Freshly dug fluorite and barite waiting to be wrapped. The large baryte on the lower left is roughly 15 cm long.



17th Jul 2018 13:47 BSTChris Rayburn

One more for posterity. My friend Rex works on extracting specimens while yours truly strikes a pose.

18th Jul 2018 18:33 BSTGreg Simmons


19th Jul 2018 12:54 BSTMatt Courville

Great shots Chris! I love the context of collecting with the specimens. For all that is good with museums, you don't often get these real-life photos with the 99.9% of what can be actually collected at a locality. I should start a 'Collecting with your Injured Hands' thread with all of the collecting issues people experience for kicks - just got a bizzare spider bite out collecting that never hurt, but made a quarter-sized bruise with a bump at the centre on my forearm the next day....;)

19th Jul 2018 13:14 BSTChris Rayburn

Thanks Matt. As others have noted, it can be very hard to pause and take photos when you're in the middle of a good find. I don't always manage to, but it's fun to share with others when I do.

If you zoom in on the photo of the seam above, you'll see spider webs. Each of the vugs was thick with web...obviously there was an opening that allowed spiders in. It's black widow country, and I was half expecting to roust a nest of them, but the webs were all abandoned. Keeps you on your toes!

19th Jul 2018 13:22 BSTAndrew Debnam

I agree with Matt Chris. Nice to see some variety in posts as well.

19th Jul 2018 19:50 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. My 11 year old son found a nice specimen of High Grade Epithermal Gold ore at the Florence Mine. James has found many specimens at the Rustler #2 and Florence Mines. He also gives tours of these Mines... Found on July 19th, 2018.

19th Jul 2018 19:55 BSTJon Aurich


. Goldfield Nevada. The Gold specimen that James found today at the Rustler #2 and Florence Mines. Also, a look at it through a 10x lense. 1 1/2” x 1 1/2” x 1 1/4”.

19th Jul 2018 20:00 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. James is shown with the famous Little Florence Lease shaft. In the background is the Rustler #2 Mine. He is not far from where he found a nice Gold specimen on July 19th, 2018. James will be having his Mine tours at Goldfield Days on August 3-5, 2018.

21st Jul 2018 03:58 BSTPaul Brandes Manager

Good stuff Chris!

It has been many years since I was at Blanchard, but I remember having an encounter with said Black Widow spider in one of those cracks. Had I not seen it when I did, I surely would have felt her bite! I'm currently in the Keweenaw for over 3 weeks so while collecting, I'll try to get some "action" shots to post...

21st Jul 2018 04:55 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Another great High Grade Gold Specimen found on July 20th, 2018 at the famous Rustler #2 and Florence Mines. 1 1/4 x 1 x 1/4”.. Thanks for the PMs of my son doing the tours of the Mines, he thanks you all !!

21st Jul 2018 12:21 BSTChris Rayburn

Hi Paul--my turn to be jealous. Three weeks in Keweenaw! I look forward to seeing your action shots and finds.

23rd Jul 2018 20:17 BSTJon Aurich

. These beautiful Gold Nuggets were found by myself many decades ago, when I was around 12 years old. At the time, I lived in a town called Lake Isabella, in California, near my home was an old mining town called Keysville, At 10 years old, It was great learning how to sluice and Pan for Gold at just a walking distance from home !! The nuggets are the size of Ohio Blue Tip match heads.....

23rd Jul 2018 20:25 BSTJon Aurich

. Goldfield Nevada. Found on July 22nd, 2018, this rare High Grade Epithermal Gold Specimen is from the famous Engineers Lease of the Florence Mine. It shows a rare combination of Alunite, Bismuthinite, Goldfieldite, Famatinite, Dacite, Quartz, Cryptocrystalline Quartz and Native Gold.

26th Jul 2018 00:10 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A vug of bladed baryte crystals which appeared when I chiselled a large piece of massive baryte into smaller pieces in the field. Collected in May 2018 at a new locality on Mindat. The trenches are on private property.

”There was a production of barite (heavy spar) in 1921 by H.C. Bellew, 6 Saint Sacrament St., Montreal, Que. of approximately 200 tons, from a deposit which is located on lot 20, concession X, township of North Burgess, Lanark county. No shipments, however, were reported during 1921 or 1922.", Ontario Department of Mines annual report,1922.

The baryte was used in the production of paper.

26th Jul 2018 21:45 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

Short prismatic schorl crystals with good lustre and up to 1 cm. sit on a bed of milky quartzes , which in turn sit on a phlogopite crystal section that has pink calcite as its matrix.

Only the tip of one schorl crystal was visible when I collected this specimen. When I etched it with vinegar over the period over several days, the schorl cluster and the quartz appeared.

Dimensions: 8 cm x 6 cm x 4 cm

Largest Crystal Size: 4.5 cm

Personally collected with John Biczok and Doug Scott, May 2018

30th Jul 2018 01:15 BSTSean

Here are two of the Analcimes that I've found in Mont St. Hilaire. There are more where that came from.


And here's one (crappy) picture of Siderite.


30th Jul 2018 14:42 BSTMatt Courville

Great new finds Sean and John. Sean - with the particular lighting on the 1st photo, it looks like it could be from a horror movie trailer don't you think ;) ? something like 'Analcimes in the Basement' or 'The Shinnies' or 'The Extractorcist'

I'm also a fan of seeing people posting from lost and forgotten places - these spots have hope that they are not picked-out as well

30th Jul 2018 23:10 BSTAndrew Debnam

nice finds Sean and John,

This is a high grade vein piece from Cobalt. It was attached to about a 250 lb boulder I metal detected under a jumble of spruce trees. My son and I managed to detach it from the boulder. The first photo shows the underside which was on the diabase rock and the second the outside rind which has been exposed to the elements for 100 years perhaps. It weighs 2 lbs 10 oz and is just under half an inch thick


30th Jul 2018 23:59 BSTJerry Cone Expert

I found these unusual-looking green crystals a few weeks ago at the Wicks Mine in Sierra County New Mexico. I was sure they were going to be a new mineral but not so - they are mottramites. I had them analyzed by EDS.

31st Jul 2018 12:52 BSTChris Rayburn

Indeed, nice finds everyone. I thoroughly enjoy following this thread.

Andrew, have you managed to identify any of the minerals in your vein specimen? I'm not that familiar with Cobalt area mineralogy.

Jerry, very interesting crystallization patterns in those mottramites. I've not seen this before.

31st Jul 2018 13:41 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hi Chris, most of the pieces from Cobalt contain a mixture of silver, cobalt aresinides(sukkterudite for example ) and nickel arsenides (nickeline for example). Arsenopyrite is also very common. This piece is a high grade piece so it contains silver. Judging by the readings from my metal detector (fisher 75) it contains very roughly about 30-50 percent silver. The mixed metal mineralogy can be quite complex in Cobalt.


31st Jul 2018 14:43 BSTBruce Cairncross Expert

Hi Matt,

As the "founder" of this thread, not sure if you're entertaining samples collected in the southern hemisphere? If so, here are two specimens I collected in July 2017 while visiting the defunct Berg Aukas mine in the Otavi Mountainland, Namibia.

This specimen (7.4 cm) is an intergrowth of dendritic descloizite and white dolomite crystals:

This one (8.5 cm) is a hand-specimen I picked up off the dumps and subsequently had cut and one side polished. It shows cores of red-orange vanadinite mixed with descloizite and partly rimmed by dark green-brown descloizite. The white matrix is mainly dolomite with some minor smithsonite:

31st Jul 2018 14:46 BSTWayne Corwin


It can be collected from anywhere.

Nice sppecimens !

31st Jul 2018 17:00 BSTMatt Courville

Hi Bruce, as Wayne said - please post what you like. I'm sure everyone would just love to see recent Namibia field collecting photos if you have any. Post here or on the 'In-situ' thread if you feel like sharing/ have any of these.

Andrew - 'under a jumble of spruce trees' sounds like something I would do! hahaha The more uncomfortable and awkward, the better the finds it seems;)

31st Jul 2018 22:25 BSTJerry Cone Expert

Thanks Chris.

1st Aug 2018 00:03 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

NO Namibia!!! (just kidding)

David K Joyce

1st Aug 2018 09:56 BSTBruce Cairncross Expert

I'm sure everyone would just love to see recent Namibia field collecting photos if you have any

OK, thanks. I'll see what I can "dig" up. We did a 2-week geological transect from Tsumeb in the north to Rosh Pinah mine in the south and collected some interesting specimens along the way...

Here's a shot of the Okoruso fluorite mine. This locality featured in a recent issue of the Mineralogical Record. I have some specimens self-collected in the old pit and these need to be photographed. I'll post them in this forum:

1st Aug 2018 20:51 BSTScott Rider

Chalcedony pseudomorph of calcite from jasper laden geodes. Saguache County, Colorado. July 28th find.

What makes the this one unique is the isolated rhomb, and its blue in color on white matrix. Most specimens that I have found are clusters, and many have the same color as the matrix. It has interesting rhombic features on the surface. There is another crystal next to it, about 3-4 mm, that has a different shape, a modified or maybe twinned rhome that creates a triangular shape with blue zoning as well.


Sorry for the lack of quality on the images. My regular camera is packed up for a move. The camera on my phone is mediocre at best...

2nd Aug 2018 12:34 BSTChris Rayburn

That's a remarkably rich ore specimen Andrew. I don't have a metal detector but I once watched someone find a rich gold ore specimen on a mine dump near Central City here in Colorado. Looks like fun!

Scott, you've put my Saguache pseudos to shame yet again. Beautiful specimen.

2nd Aug 2018 14:08 BSTScott Rider

Thanks Chris. I thought your finds were quite unique especially the larger cluster of dogtooth pseudos. It seems the calcite morphology differs quite a bit from just a short distance from each dig.

This is another example of how dirty some of the geodes get, when they are closer to the surface... I almost missed this specimen until I saw a tiny rhomb sticking out of the dirt.

With just a rinse, the dirt comes off easily. I didn't have high expectations until I rinsed it, and it revealed black pseudos. The colors I've seen in these pseudos go from colorless, blue, black, yellow, and pink.

2nd Aug 2018 23:44 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Collected the piece this is on a few years back and I had an arrow on the other side for a different mineral. Turned it over and there was a small blue area and when I zoomed in I was surprised. The main mineral is chrysocolla with quartz and the little pieces I have no idea how this came to be like this. Just thought it was a fun little piece and I got this photo.

3rd Aug 2018 00:51 BSTJeff Collens

I saw this football size crystal at a secret location in Ontario. Don't ask as I can not say where it is. And yes it is still there and covered again.

3rd Aug 2018 05:27 BSTSean

What mineral is this?

3rd Aug 2018 13:34 BSTScott Rider

Orthoclase maybe? That sure is a big, fat Crystal! Are there other minerals present Jeff, like large quartz crystals?

3rd Aug 2018 13:42 BSTMatt Neuzil Expert

More than likely it's feldspar and looks like it's from Millar mine as a possibility. Could be from anywhere.

3rd Aug 2018 14:18 BSTJeff Collens

No quartz at this site from what I have seen.

3rd Aug 2018 15:06 BSTMatt Courville

Very neat Jeff! Based off the the natural energy that the photo shows it must be Orthoclase var-NFL-ite ;)

3rd Aug 2018 16:42 BSTDon Windeler

Based on the location, that should probably be "CFL-ite"... ;)

Cool rock!


4th Aug 2018 19:08 BSTAndrew Debnam

looks like a big feldspar Jeff, judging by the surrounding crystals. Here is another high grade vein piece from Cobalt just shy of 2lbs.

@ Chris, Cobalt is a fascinating place and well worth a visit anyone interested in early hard rock mining history or collecting not just silver but many other metals. Amazing to think veins like the little silver vein could be tapped at the surface in the Cobalt heyday


5th Aug 2018 13:18 BSTChris Rayburn

Looks like a fascinating place to visit Andrew. A bit of a haul from Colorado, but I've been known to sneak into Ontario from time to time ; )

6th Aug 2018 18:18 BSTGuy Davis

I dug this loose columbite out of the dumps of the first prospect near the power line cut at the Case Beryl Prospects in Portland, Connecticut under permit in 2016. Most of the columbites found here are small and acicular, but this one exhibits classic columbite habit and has some of the irridescence often seen on the crystal faces. I was told this is a huge columbite for the locale and even the state. The best part of finding this was that it was buried in the dumps about a foot above an old beer can so obviously somebody missed it in their search for beryl.



6th Aug 2018 19:23 BSTKelly Nash Expert

That columbite is great, Guy! Pyrite disks like this were fairly common in the when the Dallas-Fort Worth Airport was constructed in the 1970s, but they still can be found occasionally at distances up to a mile east and a mile south of the airport, when the Eagle Ford Shale is exposed. A friend and I explored a new highway cut under Interstate 30 just west of Dallas, Texas in 2016. There were hundreds of them in the embankment, but right after I put this one in my shirt pocket, the police came and ran us off, and this is the only one I got.

6th Aug 2018 19:55 BSTAndrew Debnam

Kelly and Guy, both very interesting specimens.

Kelly, what mineral-material is the centre part of the disk?

6th Aug 2018 20:22 BSTKelly Nash Expert

Andrew - the disks are pyrite too - here's one that's sawed and polished:

6th Aug 2018 20:38 BSTAndrew Debnam

Neat, thanks I like them

7th Aug 2018 07:44 BSTBruce Cairncross Expert

Here's a 16.5 cm specimen of pink halite collected from the evaporitic salt pans on the Skeleton Coast of Namibia. The pale pink colour is caused by algae. The second photo is from the pan. At the bottom right you can see the crusts of halite occurring veins. The best specimens come from around the edges of the pans where the larger crystals aggregate.


7th Aug 2018 07:53 BSTBruce Cairncross Expert

Two small self-collected specimens from the D-pit, Okoruso fluorite mine, Namibia:

A vug lined with quartz crystals, some with blebs of black goethite, on fluorite. Field of view is 2.8 cm

Quartz crystals, the main one doubly terminated, with cubic fluorite, 3.6 cm

7th Aug 2018 13:52 BSTChris Rayburn

Beautiful aesthetics on that quartz & fluorite specimen Bruce! The columbite, pyrite and halite are all beautiful too. Keep them coming, everyone.

7th Aug 2018 18:10 BSTDon Windeler

Bruce's post with the halite prompted me to share this one. Last year I was in Namibia as well and visited the Cape Cross seal colony along the Skeleton Coast. The road goes very close to the salt pans he showed -- or at least there were signs to nearby salt facilities! -- and we saw these "self-service" mineral shops along the way.

If you liked a halite specimen, leave something in the can. Suspect a lot of those halites had been there a while, though, as most of the crystal edges were rounded from what I assume was prolonged exposure to the coastal fog.



8th Aug 2018 23:12 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This enigmatic crystal was recently found by one of my friend in absolutely unexpected place - NWW from Kondopoga city in central Karelia. It was found during fishing in Khavchozero lake.

Its dencity is 6.9 g/cm3. Nobody knows what it is exactly. I am waiting for it arrive for analyzis.



8th Aug 2018 23:15 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Other catch from this place were these almandines and the schorl (in the center).

9th Aug 2018 14:24 BSTMatt Courville

Neat mystery minerals Pavel! Has anyone suggested wolframite yet?

9th Aug 2018 20:42 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Initially I supposed ferrohogbomite, but its s.g. turned out almost twice higher.

Other variants included uraninite, cassiterite, wolframite and columbite-tantalite. Absence very typical alteration products and presence of well visible cleavage excluded the first two variants. So, for the moment, wolframite (unknown up to now on whole Karelia territory, and not the most typical for a granite pegmatites mineral) and manganocolumbite (known - - in 300 km to North) are competing hypotheses.

In any case the find of the 7 cm crystal of any from these two minerals in this region has big interest and regional importance.

18th Aug 2018 23:43 BSTjeff yadunno

awesome finds everyone

here are some quartz crystals i have found this summer

from micro druzy quartz on fossils,

to broken points showing zoning

and an odd one which to me looks like two pieces of one crystal

20th Aug 2018 00:08 BSTAndrew Debnam

great finds all, Pavel let us know when you get the ID information. Straight from the tile saw today a piece from Cobalt. Silver in meta sediments left on the surface which was a bonus. Not a large piece but it shows material can still be found in Cobalt.


20th Aug 2018 00:16 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This turned out wolframite (Mn0.57Fe0.43)[WO4]. In association with fluorite, molybdenite and muscovite.

20th Aug 2018 00:22 BSTAndrew Debnam

thank you, more crystals to be found there of this size?

20th Aug 2018 01:25 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

No, only this one and some damaged grains of 3-4 cm size without matrix.

2nd Sep 2018 01:44 BSTAaron Verrill

Found this chalcopyrite behemoth at the Kishu mine located in Kiwa Town, Mie Prefecture, Japan. The mine itself is a massive expanse of crisscrossing tunnels with numerous entrances and dumps scattered throughout several kilometers of hills and valleys. There is all kinds of mineralization going on with this specimen.

As far as I can tell, the matrix is chalcopyrite with veins of calcite, flourite, pyrite and galena (or sphalerite?) running through it. This hydrothermal copper deposit mine closed in 1978.

9th Sep 2018 22:46 BSTPeter K. Szarka

These are chunks of calcite with fluor-richterite were collected by me in the late 70's near Wilberforce, Ontario. I'm just starting to work on these and am hoping to get a few nice pieces.

This first photo shows the material and some of the buckets to be used. The weight of the rocks ranges from one kilo up to 30 kilos, most being about 20kg.

The second photo is a closer look at one of the large pieces, a 30 kg chunk with large crystals everywhere in it. I have high hopes that this one might provide a good specimen.

This photo shows one of the large pieces submerged in a pail soaking in muriatic acid and water. The volume of calcite being dissolved is great so the process requires quite a lot of acid. But as can be seen, the results are worth it. The crystals can clearly be seen starting to emerge from the matrix. Another full day in the bath should liberate most of the broken crystals from the surface and begin to reveal complete ones inside the calcite.

9th Sep 2018 22:59 BSTPeter K. Szarka

This photo shows a number of smaller pieces that were worked on yesterday, as well as a few loose crystals I thought worth keeping. They will be soaked in clean water until all traces of acid are removed. I'm unsure about keeping these on matrix because the calcite takes on an unnatural, pearly look from the acid-etching. Anyone got thoughts on this?

And finally, here's a closer look at one of the specimens after a day in the acid bath. It's curious that the acid-etching accentuates around the crystal outlines and does not etch the rock equally all around. This piece can probably still use a bit of reduction and could possibly even be split to make two specimens.

9th Sep 2018 23:10 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hi Peter, the best way I have found to remove the pearly acid finish to the calcite is to put your specimens in vinegar for about 30 minutes. The pearly sheen will become dull. If you really want to get more labour intensive you can also abrade the rounded calcite edges with an abrasive or scribe. I have some of this material as well and the vinegar did the trick.


9th Sep 2018 23:20 BSTPeter K. Szarka

Thanks Andrew!

10th Sep 2018 04:47 BSTKeith Compton Manager


That's some very nice fluor-richterite

I'm jealous !!


10th Sep 2018 12:57 BSTMatt Courville

Hi Peter - I really appreciated the step-by-step photos!! I'll second what Andrew said on the vinegar, but at times it is horribly slow, so don't give-up after only one soak;)

Neat piece Aaron! Andrew just I love the look of polished sulfides/metals like yours. I have tried this with well-formed graphite crystals in matrix and it turned-out quite neat (despite being slightly less exiting than silver -hahaha)

10th Sep 2018 13:38 BSTChris Rayburn

Beautiful pieces Peter. You exercised remarkable restraint in waiting 40 years to work on these! I'd absolutely leave them on the calcite matrix, myself. Well done.

10th Sep 2018 15:26 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert




This is a bit of a re-discovery for me. Collected the material at the Reef Mine in SE Arizona years ago and it was sitting in a pile outside for years. Had collected mostly for the scheelite and these didn't glow so they say.

On reexamination I discovered they had very nice stolzite in some of the mineralized quartz.

Just took these photos yesterday from the pieces I had trimmed to put in the collection.

24th Sep 2018 16:30 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

This week-end I visited the crazy locality of native lead close to Voronezh city. The locality is represented by pipe-like structure hosted in white chalks and composed by silicified limestone breccia. The pipe is opened at right slope of small ravine washed out within chalk layers.

Local name of such formations is "diva".

Here structure of the breccia

and its cement are shown:

24th Sep 2018 16:35 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager


No traces of serious hidrothermal alteration of rock is visible.

Tabular nuggets of lead are included right in cement of the breccia. This cement is represented by smaller pieces of the same limestone.


24th Sep 2018 16:42 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Most of nuggets were found at the slope under the pipe (with MD and simply by eyes). Many balls and half-balls 3-7 mm size were found.

This is my personal prey.

Main part of rich native lead from the pipe itself was already collected before us, so we found only one platy nugget right in situ. It was found occasionaly during hammering of the wall.

The lead is very pure (no admixtures of Sn, Sb, S weren't detected in microprobe sensitivity limits. Accompanied mineralization is represented by lead carbonates and oxides. Host limestones contains about 10 wol.% of silica and up to 20 wol.% of heulandite-Ca.


And this is present to me of founder of the locality - larger nuggets covered with secondary minerals xls for further investigation.

24th Sep 2018 17:38 BSTReiner Mielke Expert

That is a crazy locality. Who would have thought native lead in limestone!

24th Sep 2018 18:17 BSTGregg Little


I was on a drilling project for CO2 (northern Montana) and we intersected a similarly bleached and silicified carbonate. It was generally surmised that the CO2 was the altering medium though no research, that I am aware of, has been done on the material. There was no apparent secondary mineralization but we felt the CO2 had altered the limestone, possibly hydrothermally.

Cheers, Gregg

24th Sep 2018 18:45 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Reiner, the locality is known already third year, but I was unable to believe in it, before I saw it my own eyes.

Gregg, material filling the pipe is more yellowish than surrounding white chalk (isn't bleached). It has twise larger free silica and heulandite contents then surrounding rocks. Besides that it contains fossilized shells in difference from chalk.

Impression arises, that limestone was delivered from more deep horizonts by gaseous explosion. Or that by these limestone debris some well was filled. In other words, material within the pipe wasn't product of transformation of host chalk layer.

24th Sep 2018 19:05 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A single, distorted ferroan spinel crystal 3.2 cm. that is twinned and displays interrupted stepped growth features.

One interesting aspect of this spinel (common to this locality) is the partial replacement of the spinel by grey-pale green opaque grains of corundum,

Another interesting feature is the presence of four rare, well- formed Högbomite crystals on the surface of the spinel.

10.2cm across

Personally collected June,2018

24th Sep 2018 20:24 BSTBecky Coulson Expert

Pavel (or anyone!),

That occurrence of native lead is truly remarkable. Can you tell me how this occurs? I understand what you say about the limestones brought up via a gaseous explosion, but from where does the lead come? Thanks for the great photos!

Many thanks, Becky

24th Sep 2018 21:12 BSTPavel Kartashov Manager

Nobody knows.

I want to check isotope composition of the metal. If it will turns out monoisotopic 206Pb, this will mean, that the lead formed from radon, which had coming up through the pipe.

7th Oct 2018 19:57 BSTSean

I, surprisally, wasn’t really a big fan of Apatites when I was younger, but this Fall (for some reason), I felt like collecting some green Apatites again.


8th Oct 2018 13:41 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


This small piece is from a small mine-prospect near Dragoon Arizona. The malachite at the location had a habit of curving around and then was overgrown by chrysocolla. Loved the curving malachite.

9th Oct 2018 00:31 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi All, I was also out in the Grenville Metasedimentary Belt recently and collected some nice amphibole and fluorapatite crystals from weathered calcite vein-dykes. Gibson Road East with friends. If the amphibole crystals look unusual, it is because they are elongated, twinned crystals. The fluorapatite crystals have poor terminations but very nice prism faces. Very enjoyable time in the bush getting dirty.

David K. Joyce



9th Oct 2018 00:37 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi, again, All,

I was fortunate, recently, to have the opportunity to collect at the Flamboro Quarry, north of Dundas, Ontario. I was happy to locate a boulder with some pretty nice fluorite crystals and collected a couple of nice specimens. The single cube is 2.3cm on-edge and the matrix specimen is 12.5cm across. A good day!

David K. Joyce


9th Oct 2018 03:50 BSTSean

What the heck, how did you get in the quarry? In the past, I've kept on waiting for a respond and got nothing. And while at it, got nothing again whenever I tried to call them.

Also, when did you go to Titanite Hill? I was there a few days ago (and collected Fluorapatites that you can see on my recent post).

9th Oct 2018 12:53 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi Sean,

The Flamboro Quarry only allows very few field trips by organized clubs. Individuals are not allowed ad hoc. You have to be a member of a club, with insurance, and go on an authorized field trip. I'm a member of the Walker Mineralogical Club, Toronto.

I was in at Tory Hill every day last week, rain and shine.


David K Joyce.

9th Oct 2018 13:44 BSTChris Rayburn

Nice David! I love the fluorite. Very sharp and clean.

I was up your way from Colorado a couple of weeks ago and got into a good vein of titanite and amphibole at Gibson Rd E (Titanite Hill). The amphiboles range up to 3 x 5 cm; the titanites are about 6 cm across. Interestingly, the vein had almost no apatite.


9th Oct 2018 13:57 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi Chris, Every calcite vein-dyke is a little different, even in close proximity! I never know what to expect.

Here is a pic of me getting my hands(and the rest of me) dirty. Ray McDougall took the pic. Another of fresh amphibole twinned crystals fresh out of the ground.

David K Joyce


9th Oct 2018 13:59 BSTSean

David, were you at Titanite hill last Thursday and Friday? Because that’s when I was there.

Also, does the Walker Mineral Club go to the quarry every year? Also, where do they usually go to? I may wanna join next year.

9th Oct 2018 14:06 BSTChris Rayburn

Looks like you had a little more sunshine than I did David! Very nice finds.

9th Oct 2018 15:47 BSTScott Rider

Some really good finds guys!!! Don't forget the In-Situ topic, should any of you have images of the specimens you found in the original hole...

I have been in the middle of moving and setting up my new house, haven't had any time to go hunt for crystals... Now I need to jump back onto the bandwagon!!!

David, those fluorites are sure beautiful! Its become my favorite mineral to "hunt" for, as they aren't exactly elusive in Colorado, but not easy to find good crystals... This is a cube from Lake George, Colorado. Its hard to see, but it has blue, purple and yellow (staining??) zones in a mostly colorless crystal. It was found in a tiny vug while I was searching for good pockets.


10th Oct 2018 01:49 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

The Walker Mineralogical Club also went to the well-known French River occurrence this Fall. A bunch of us worked in blistering heat to recover nice aegirine crystals and crystal sections of bizarre-coloured deep yellow-orange cancrinite. I collected with Bob Beckett and here are a few pics of specimens we recovered. The large massive piece of cancrinite is 15.0cm across. The specimen showing a cancrinite crystal section with red altered rind is 12.0cm across. The field of view for the aegirine specimen is 4.0cm across. I'll post a couple more photos in a second post.

David K. Joyce



10th Oct 2018 01:57 BSTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Here are a few more pics from the French River Occurrence:

This specimen is 7.0cm across and shows yellow-orange cancrinite, green aegirine and other alteration minerals.


Here is a view of the pit/trench where we worked. The cancrinite and other minerals of interest occur in seams and clots in mostly feldspar matrix.


Here is an in-situ pic of me taken by Bob Beckett, back at the lodge beside the French River, in the evening, relaxing after a shower with my banjo. I think there is a cold brewski there somewhere. BTW, the French River was part of one of the most important east-west canoe routes across Canada for Europeans for centuries and for indigenous people for much longer, of course.


David K Joyce

10th Oct 2018 18:03 BSTMatt Courville

Great posts lately! David I appreciate all of the variety of photos as well - especially the Joyceite (Var-Banjobrewskite) Is it a normal ritual for you to take a shower with the banjo after a good day of collecting? ;)

10th Oct 2018 23:05 BSTMatt Courville

In the theme of Titanite Hill - here is a before and after with some slightly altered titanite, along with some dark amphiboles, and a small amount of grungy feldspar and apatite. Some of these require a lot of iron-removal.

The last shot is Titanite Hill's unofficial mascot - 'Theo the Toad' fearlessly protecting my digging spot. Let's just say he has an apatite for laughing at ridiculous filthy humans collecting rocks ;)



11th Oct 2018 00:16 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

A single thick, blocky crystal of dark green (Actinolite) ( 5cm) [ UPDATE (JAN.26/2018) : analysis by Kerry Day indicates this is AUGITE]

The specimen is partially terminated, having been contacted on one side by pick calcite, and the other side of the termination, surprisingly, consists of a small vug of gemmy green diopside crystals

The sample was weathered out of a calcite vein that had several larger crystals still in situ.

11th Oct 2018 00:18 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

The biggest and best Högbomite I have collected - a terminated crystal showing spiral stepped-growth of stacked, tabular crystal plates.

It is >4mm and >1mm thick - the thickest I have found.

The colours appear to be a surface-diffraction effect.

It sits on a Spinel crystal which has surface alteration and partial replacement by Corundum. A total of 7 Högbomite crystals are found on this specimen, the most on one specimen I have collected so far.

11th Oct 2018 00:28 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

11th Oct 2018 00:36 BSTJohn Montgomery Expert

This 4.3cm scepter, from the same pocket as my first of the season 2018 finds, has a longer than usual hematite included stem for this locality. The black material is specular hematite, typical for this locality.

The scepter is clear and reveals the termination of the stem.

15th Oct 2018 19:02 BSTFrank Karasti


Return to Zumbro and gems in my gold pan. Rather than visit with the women folk, I head down to the river and dig in the dirt. I always find the heavy sand interesting. Found near Mantorville Minnesota Zumbro river, Crawdad #1 placer mine ; ) . fov gold side 5mm.

16th Oct 2018 12:09 BSTDale Foster Expert

Following the first autumn storm last week, I took the opportunity to have a look around Trevaunance Cove on Saturday the 13th October to see whether anything interesting had been turned up by the waves.

I found this:

A large cobble showing considerable amounts of white Cassiterite, locally termed 'Dough Tin' on account of its resemblance to an uncooked bread dough.

I will look at having this specimen sliced and polished to see if there is any interesting structure present internally.

16th Oct 2018 20:01 BSTAndrew Debnam

Thanks to all for sharing your finds. This piece was found this past July in a road cut on the Musclow -Greenview rd north of Bancroft Ontario. My son and I have just started to etch (calcite) the pieces with HCL to expose some pretty decent Diopside crystals and Albite feldspar.

18th Oct 2018 12:59 BSTChris Rayburn

Nice combo Andrew. I find it particularly enjoyable to collect at localities with crystals hosted in calcite. The thrill of seeing what lies beneath the calcite is equal to the thrill of the original find. It's like having two birthdays in a row. (Although at my age, I demur.)

19th Oct 2018 14:05 BSTAndrew Debnam

Thanks Chris, it is a treasure hunt of sorts when you etch the calcite. I have also recently etched some dolomite from the Cobalt area and found some interesting mixed metal pieces.

22nd Oct 2018 08:15 BSTDale Foster Expert

I took a visit to one of my favourite St Agnes collecting sites on Sunday and found this rather unspectacular looking specimen:

After a good clean in oxalic acid it came out looking like this showing a layer of brown Cassiterite encrusting a joint surface:

This example gave a good response under short wave UV light:

The collecting trip was carried out under the watchful eye of Pip:

Pip checking on proceedings

23rd Oct 2018 19:20 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


When I lived in Bisbee in the 1970's I found all kinds of things while hiking the hills and canyons. Found a number of pieces with copper mineralization and when broken, some had very nice crystals. This one has as nice a grouping of brochantite as I can remember finding in Bisbee.

24th Oct 2018 20:31 BSTMatt Courville

Beautiful Bronchantite Rolf! Quite often smashing boulders apart seems to be the only way to go at certain sites.

Here are some photos of the Frontenac Lead mine (Draper Lake) in Ontario where I was fortunate enough to go out collecting this year. The site goes back to 1886 and had gone down 6-levels to 270 feet in the first of 3 adits with numerous open cuts/trenches over the site. They had an aerial tram connecting the three adits over a distance of 4000 feet through small hills and forest.

Here are a few heavily overgrown site photos and a neat calcite encased with marcasite crystals, despite the photo not doing it any justice.



27th Oct 2018 21:01 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


This is an opal-AN that I found while collecting in Bisbee. It is colorless but the red hematite beneath it gives it a beautiful red color.

27th Oct 2018 22:33 BSTWayne Corwin


Amazing, Trippy photo!

What size is that FOV?

27th Oct 2018 23:20 BSTRolf Luetcke Expert


Size is listed under the photo, 5mm field of view. Small but under magnification it is really pretty.

31st Oct 2018 06:51 GMTAaron Verrill

Found quite a few chunks of flourite while following a small river upstream, in the middle of the night, deep in the mountains. Some were beautifully banded.



31st Oct 2018 06:57 GMTAaron Verrill

This flourite is quite massive, weighing about 8 pounds.

31st Oct 2018 16:13 GMTMatt Courville

Very neat Aaron! I wish I had the nerve to collect out at night. I tried it once - attempting to wait while the sun went down at a small quarry, but the odd sounds and the sheer darkness was a bit much! hahaha Perhaps with a few fellow rockhounds I'd even camp-out if there was good UV mineral potential;)

While your out there, try a bit of UV light searching on the forest floor since some mushrooms will react as well

Also loving the variety on this thread!

31st Oct 2018 22:36 GMTAaron Verrill


I highly recommend collecting at night. I bring a pop gun and a whistle and bear bells (kuma-yoke) when in bear country. The only trouble I've had is when I've inadvertently run into a troupe of monkeys which really ticked them off (had to back off slowly). It's very easy to pick up the glint of crystals with a good headlight. There have been many a time where I missed a good crystal specimen in the day only to stumble upon it that night because of my powerful headlights.

31st Oct 2018 23:06 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Hi Aaron, In Canada we can tell the difference between different types of bears in an area by their "scat". Black and brown bears typically have twigs, berry seeds and grass seeds in their scat. Grizzly bear scat is similar but there are often bells in it as well. :)

David K Joyce

11th Nov 2018 03:13 GMTAaron Verrill

Well, the wifey has been a bit irritated lately as my rockhounding trips have taken chunks out of recent weekends. She told me I've temporarily lost my rockhounding privileges to any site that takes more than 20 minutes to get to from home. She complained recently that I have rocks on my mind, rocks in my head, rocks for brains... ...she may have a point.

So, while the family was still sleeping, I sneaked in a little mini trip to an inactive Serpentine quarry not too far from my house.

This quarry is reported to have calcite and aragonite. I certainly found both.



11th Nov 2018 03:23 GMTAaron Verrill

I have no idea what that red-brown, botryoidal material is under the sprays of aragonite. Does anyone have any ideas?

Here is another specimen loaded with aragonite:



11th Nov 2018 03:43 GMTAaron Verrill

And another specimen (calcite maybe?):


12th Nov 2018 08:28 GMTLukáš Křesina

Red-brown, botryoidal material is probably chalcedony or opal.

Lukáš Křesina

12th Nov 2018 11:51 GMTAaron Verrill

Lukas, thank you for your response. I'll keep posting if I find anymore nice finds from that area.

15th Nov 2018 20:17 GMTEric He

Collected in King County, WA. Found a winner right on the surface.

16th Nov 2018 12:27 GMTChris Rayburn

Nice one Eric. I found similar specimens earlier this year at the Mule Creek (Brushy Mountain, Sawmill Creek) locality in New Mexico. I'm guessing the depositional environments are similar...gas vesicles in extrusive volcanic deposits...?

16th Nov 2018 12:54 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert




This is kind of a fun collecting story. Two friends went into the field in SE Arizona a couple of weeks ago and I decided it was something I wanted to do also but not to where they had gone. I had collected the Fairbank Arizona railroad bed over the years and had the material in a pile in the yard at our house. Since the guys were out there I went to the pile and was looking at the limonite I had collected there and picked up one of the pieces and the piece was too heavy for just limonite and I took it to my breaking table and when I split the piece I was amazed at the sparkle inside.

Took the material into the house and looked under microscope and saw the great columnar groupings of crystals. Turned out to be plattnerite, identified by a Bisbee expert and the nicest I had found in Bisbee. The material came from overburden from about 1887 from the Copper Queen Mine area. Sure was fun to find something I had actually collected several years ago and besides lying in the desert for about 120 years, it lay in our yard for another ten before I actually "found" the specimens. My best plattnerite in our collection.

16th Nov 2018 14:15 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Nice sceptres Eric and Chris. Chris, what size is that?


16th Nov 2018 16:00 GMTChris Rayburn

Hi John--it's about 5 cm long and just under 2 cm wide. I found larger ones but this was one of the best formed scepters.

Rolf, great find on your Fairbank railroad pile! I still have the turgite from there.

16th Nov 2018 16:28 GMTEric He

Chris, the deposit my scepter is from a quartz breccia pipe.

16th Nov 2018 16:50 GMTEric He

Chris, most quartz from King County is from numerous breccia pipes in the region's Snoqualmie Batholith. It also produces many Japan-law twins, some Reichenstein-Grieserntal twins, and a recently discovered "Wiltse Law Twin". Mineralization is often associated with sulfides, world-class pyrite and quartz combos have been found.

16th Nov 2018 17:14 GMTChris Rayburn

Thanks for the additional information Eric. I haven't had the opportunity to collect up there but I'm certainly aware of the Spruce Ridge quartz-pyrite combos. Someday!

16th Nov 2018 17:31 GMTScott Rider

Some of my favorite combo specimens comes from that region. The Spruce Ridge pyrite + quartz combos are truly some of the best in the world. I have one odd one, two large goethite coated pyrites with small quartz crystals. Kind of the opposite you normally see, with smaller pyrite and larger quartz crystals. I've always wondered if I could clean it and get the shiny bronze coloration, small flecks have come off revealing the pyrite beneath:

16th Nov 2018 17:53 GMTEric He

There are harder to reach areas between the Middle Fork and US 2 that have produced dark amethyst scepters with pyrite cubes too. I collect in a public spot on the South Fork.

16th Nov 2018 17:55 GMTEric He

Scott, if you wish to remove Goethite use oxalic or muriatic acid. If it is limonite, remove using an Iron-Out solution. Quite common.

16th Nov 2018 18:13 GMTScott Rider

I give that a shot. I recently moved and the new house isn't setup for using chemicals yet. I will not use even the lighter stuff like oxalic in the home. I had a dedicated ventilated room in my previous house that worked out quite well. I'll have to invest in a good shed it seems.

16th Nov 2018 18:50 GMTEric He

Iron Out is relatively safe as long as you don't ingest it, even touching it for a few minutes is fine, no matter how concentrated the solution is. A good full power saturated solution can clean most iron staining from crystals in just a couple of hours. Iron Out just has a strange smell, no toxic fumes either.

16th Nov 2018 19:08 GMTScott Rider

I've used SIO quite a bit, but I have never used it on pyrite. I wasn't quite sure the reaction considering the Fe content in pyrite. I was thinking oxalic would work, albeit more slowly...

I also think I have figured out a temporary solution to the use of acids. The only issue is that its winter, so my plan may not work in the cold. I have a bunch of huge plastic bins with tops, and was going to put some stuff to clean in that. I plan on getting a shed before that though, so I am not quite sure what I'll do yet LOL...

I have A LOT of specimens to clean up, not just that pyrite specimen (I'll probably just put that into a solution in the garage as that room is heated). Or I may just wait until I get that shed and the weather cooperates better.

16th Nov 2018 19:26 GMTEric He

I've tried Iron Out on pyrite. What SIO does is it converts Fe3+ to Fe2+ which then is dissolved with citric acid. If it reacts with the pyrite at all when you notice a difference all the limonite would have gone... four times over. Watch it, check at least twice a day. Shouldn't cause any problems tho.

SIO is pretty much safe for pyrite (unless you leave it in for a few months)

And as oxalic acid has a low pH, it, just like HCl, may start to eat away at the pyrite... so don't use oxalic.

16th Nov 2018 19:50 GMTPhilip Simmons

Hi Eric,

I'm not familiar with the Wiltse law. Would you happen to have pictures and a description?



16th Nov 2018 19:58 GMTScott Rider

Thanks Eric. Being that SIO removes iron rust, I hesitated on cleaning the pyrite. I have some nice pyrite from Crystal Hill that I think I'l try using SIO as well. Those specimens have tiny crystals, but many have penetrating twins that almost resemble the iron-crosses from Germany. I hope they turn out good as the crystal shapes are very interesting, but at the moment they look little to rusty for taking images and posting them here.

16th Nov 2018 20:18 GMTEric He

Cool. Glad to help.

16th Nov 2018 22:36 GMTMatt Courville

Hi Scott, I would leave your pyrite as is. I collected a neat small pyrite at a new roadcut in the early spring with some snow still out. I wasn't happy with the look of it, so rather than throw it into the garage in a box that I'll never look at, I tried to clean it with iron-out, checking frequently. The photo is the result and as you'll see, not something I would try again, despite being golden-colored now.

For the cleaning and etching in cold/ winter - I've tried to use Muriatic/HCl in the cold and it's as slow as using vinegar at this point. Buy a cheap crock-pot and use it on low heat. Unless it is very low temp, you shouldn't get any cracking of the pot, but make sure it's a well ventilated area and keep metal tools out of the area or they will rust away;)

16th Nov 2018 22:48 GMTScott Rider

Thanks Matt! I'll give that a shot as well.

I totally forgot, fellow Mindatter, and dig buddy of mine, Chris R. said those Crystal Hill pyrites don't clean well. He and I found a ton of stuff on the very edge of the mine, but most were from the ground or in very shallow veins, I kept just a few of the more complex and larger crystals. I may go back next year and see if I can find less weathered pieces. But I'll try to clean what I have just to see if they have value. Not worth anything in their current condition.

16th Nov 2018 23:30 GMTThomas Lühr Expert

If the accompanied minerals allow that, then a treatment to the pyrite with SIO/Waller's solution is recommended anyway. Besides that the specimen will cleaned, this treatment also prevents the decomposition of pyrite/marcasite.

Keep the specimen in the solution for some days in a sealed jar, at a temperature more than 20°C.

17th Nov 2018 17:54 GMTMatt Courville

Here in Ottawa, Ontario we're back to cold temperatures and a foot of snow, so collecting season has basically come to an end. Here are some of my favorite finds this past summer from Dog Lake Occurence in Frontenac Co. They are diopside roughly2 to 4 cm in size, with some alteration to talc. Some of these at this locality come semi-gemmy while others are opaque; in browns, and off-white colors.



18th Nov 2018 13:56 GMTChris Rayburn

Hi Matt--Colorado is frozen up too, at least for the time being. Textbook diopside! Here are a few of my favorites from a thoroughly enjoyable 2018 collecting season. Apologies if I've posted any of these previously.

Blanchard fluorite: July 2018, Blanchard Mine, Socorro County, NM. 4 x 5 cm.

Calumet pyrite_uralite: Modified pyrite dodecahedrons on "uralite" (actinolite ps. diopside), March 2018, Calumet Mine, Chaffee County, CO. 4 x 8 cm.

Crystal Hill quartz: August 2018, Crystal Hill Mine, Saguache County, CO. 7 x 14 cm; individual crystals to 4 cm.



18th Nov 2018 13:56 GMTChris Rayburn

One more. Hematite-included baryte, January 2018, Nakaye Mine, Sierra County, NM. 4 x 7 cm.

18th Nov 2018 16:39 GMTKevin Conroy Expert

Nice rare uralite/pyrite combo!

18th Nov 2018 17:00 GMTScott Rider

Indeed Chris, very nice specimens, especially the Crystal Hill cluster. Looks like they clean great. I still haven't cleaned any of mine other than soap and water rinses.

Chris and I found some good stuff at Calumet this year, including huge epidote clusters, but the pyrite I found fell apart upon cleaning. It seems that the ones I found were just barely on the uralite and fell off when the calcite was removed.

But I still have about hundred pounds of material still to etch, so perhaps there's more pyrite to be found!

18th Nov 2018 17:39 GMTChris Rayburn

Thanks Kevin and Scott. That's the only decent pyrite-uralite combo I've found in ten years of digging at Calumet. The uralite is almost jet black, not the usual green-gray color, and gives the specimen great contrast. I don't know if this color is related in any way to the pyrite mineralization.

19th Nov 2018 06:49 GMTAaron Verrill

Chris, those specimens are amazing! I especially like the quartz cluster. Hard to get them out at that size without damaging them. Thanks for sharing. I love this thread!

19th Nov 2018 12:48 GMTChris Rayburn

Thanks Aaron. The quartz cluster was in a clay filled vug that helped protect the crystals, and fortunately the plate was loose, so it just lifted out. Sometimes mother nature helps the cause.

27th Nov 2018 17:58 GMTAndrew Debnam

great finds everyone, yes the lousy fall weather here in Ontario Canada cut short my season as well. I have taken the time to clean up and photo some specimens. This is a 5cm vein piece of native Bismuth from the Cobalt area. Bismuth is something I had not found before this year.

30th Nov 2018 13:09 GMTChris Rayburn

Nice find Andrew. I hope to make it up to the Cobalt area someday.

30th Nov 2018 21:44 GMTAndrew Debnam

Thanks Chris, The Uralite -pyrite combo is quite unique. Here is one more I recently lightly cleaned up. 5 cm Silver leaf on matrix. Looking forward to seeing some summer finds from other folks as well.

1st Dec 2018 13:38 GMTAndré Heyninck

Navajùn, Spain.

One of the sites that you have to visit as a mineral collector!



1st Dec 2018 13:57 GMTAndré Heyninck

Hohenlimburg, Oege ,Sauerland, Germany.

Collecting calcites at the quarry.



1st Dec 2018 16:51 GMTMatt Courville

Fantastic photos Andre!! Good variety as well

1st Dec 2018 20:18 GMTBecky Elizabeth

Hey Matt!

I just happened to come on here to look at adding a picture and also asking a question when I saw your thread. I think it is awesome you've started such a popular thread and although I don't have many specimens personally found in nature outside of shells, fossils and a few basic specimens I do have some fascinating ones that someone very kind sent me and would love to show them here- Actually I wanted to phot the green fluorite under long wave uv light because you can see an awesome cube of bright orange (calcite?)inside it and wanted to ask about it and give credit to the one who found it.

Anyone arguing this post is just bored or wanting controversy and am glad so many have shown their apecimens!


Becky Elizabeth

1st Dec 2018 22:22 GMTSean

Well thankfully, no one is asking for one right now. If you wanna upload a few pictures that you've got from someone, go ahead, but this thread preferably wants photos of minerals that the uploader found him/herself.

2nd Dec 2018 04:46 GMTBecky Elizabeth

It was actually something Matt found so it was supposed to be a "nod" to him

2nd Dec 2018 18:33 GMTScott Rider

I was able to get at least one more dig here in Colorado. This pseudomorph (more of an epimorph) specimen was found in a new dig nearby Houselog Creek.

This is about 15 cm wide and has a neat double terminated Crystal perched aesthetically in the center. The camera didn't pick up the true color, it's actually a light purple. My camera sucks on this phone though.... Need an iPhone I guess...

Anyway, the last image shows a broken shell that has more pseudos inside the Crystal itself. I wonder how that happened...?



10th Dec 2018 06:13 GMTAaron Verrill

Nice pseudomorph Scott!

What makes a good specimen for me, a specimen I want to display in my collection, is a rock that represents the geology of where it was found AND it must have a sufficient amount of the desired mineral that I'm looking for. I will always take a mineral with a matrix over a larger crystallized mineral without a matrix. The more varieties of minerals on a specimen, the better!

Recently I took a field trip to the locally famous Ikuno Silver Mine in northern Hyogo Prefecture, western Japan. It's a really nice mine to visit as you can take a tour with a geologist of many of the tunnels in the mine. Some areas have exposed quartz veins filled with sulfide minerals. In some places there are black veins of silver!

Unfortunately collecting is not allowed in the immediate vicinity of the mine. but there are mineral filled quartz vein outcrops in the surrounding hills around the mine.

After leaving the mine, I did a reconnaissance of some of the creeks and ravines of the area and found this rock dominated by a quartz vein running through it. This rock shows how hydrothermal fluids punched into the cracks and weaknesses of the rhyolite country rock and left behind these mineral-rich quartz veins.

Since Ikuno has produced an abundance of tin, copper and lead, I'm hoping the metallic crystals in the quartz are cassiterite. Cassiterite crystals are not abundant in Japan. There are also yellow specks of chalcopyrite and blue specks of what I believe to be bornite.

Included are pictures of the front and back of the specimen.


10th Dec 2018 14:38 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Here are a couple of pieces I just took photos of from the King Ainsworth Mine Group in the far SE corner of Arizona. The mine has a lot of fluorescent minerals also.

10th Dec 2018 21:06 GMTEric He

Nice sprays, Rolf!

On Saturday I collected the 2nd and 3rd Reichenstein-Grieserntal twins reported from Hansen Creek, King County, Washington both sitting on top of this quartz plate! One is of the Reichenstein and one is of the Griesterntal form. Sadly each twin has a broken tip.
Video link

Needless to say, my hands got pretty beat up, but it was worth it.

10th Dec 2018 22:38 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Aaron, Sure looks like it could be cassiterite! Maybe you can get an opinion from alfredo petrov? He is pretty familiar with japanese location minerals.


David K Joyce

12th Dec 2018 06:47 GMTAaron Verrill

Thanks for the advice David. Alfredo does indeed seem to know all the ins and outs of the mineral world out here.

Today's specimen was perhaps the best "mine dump" finds that I've found this year. I found this piece in orange, limonized mud at one of the pile of tailings at Kishu Copper Mine, Kiwa town, Mie Prefecture.

I only noticed it because a couple of the crystals were gleaming in the mud. After giving it an hcl bath and then letting it sit in Hydro Fighter (the Japanese version of Iron Out) I was pleasantly surprised to find lots of crystals of sphalerite and chalcopyrite imbedded in the quartz.

Specimen is roughly 9×6 cm.


12th Dec 2018 16:04 GMTScott Rider

Rolf, those are indeed cool little sprays you got there!!! Hows the digging this time of year down in AZ? Here in Colorado, its been hit or miss with the snow. Fortunately, where I have been digging, its been "warmish" and nice. I know my buddy Chris R. came down last weekend to find some wulfenite. Maybe he'll post some finds here!!

Cool specimen Aaron. I'd love to dig in Japan, its def on my bucket list (that and to visit Tokyo). I'd love to find some Japan law twin quartz in JAPAN!!!

One thing I forgot to mention about the weird psuedos I've been finding. The vast majority of these are really epimorphs, shells that covered the original mineral and then that original mineral dissolved away. In this new spot I'm digging, the insides are quite interesting. The one image above, shows a pseudo within a pseudo. What I found interesting is there is a coating of drusy quartz over everything INSIDE the pseudo. The walls, the other pseudos, are all coated by really gemmy drusy quartz.

I find it quite unusual that a druse of quartz would fill the insides of these chalcedony pseudomorphs of calcite. The original spot where I found mostly rhombs, the insides were mostly skeletal remains of the calcite, with no drusy quartz. But this new spot, about 800 or so feet from the other, has totally different shaped pseudos as well as the drusy coatings within.. Very strange but really really beautiful when you look at them under magnification. Maybe it has too do with yet another spot, just down the hill slightly from this new spot. The area is full of nothing but drusy quartz geodes and little chalcedony. I wonder if its two different veins convening or intersecting where I am currently digging... I'm going back this weekend with Chris, perhaps his knowledge of geology can shed some light on that...

12th Dec 2018 18:02 GMTJohn Truax

Found this deep colored quartz on the tailing piles recently.

Jacksons Crossroads Amethyst Mine

Tignall, Georgia

This is a favorite thread here on Mindat, thanks for sharing all the great finds, good luck digging!

John T.

12th Dec 2018 19:00 GMTAndrew Debnam

Now that is what I call purple. Thanks for posting John

16th Dec 2018 13:06 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



Actually found this one twice. I had been to North Carolina back in the 1970's and camped out near the mine. Collected a number of pieces and had put them away in a box which ended up stored in my shed. Got the box out the other day and thought the emaralds in the mine had eluded me. Then came across a small pocket of the granular quartz and here were some emeralds after all. Took the photos yesterday. Was happy to find this in my long ago collected material.

18th Dec 2018 21:51 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

3.5cm quartz scepter with a water-clear cap and hematite included stem

18th Dec 2018 22:11 GMTEric He

John, do you know the reason of the "frosting" on the exposed part of the stem and how to remove it?

By the way, I love hematite included quartz :-)

18th Dec 2018 22:48 GMTJohn Montgomery Expert

Hello Eric,

I do not know the cause of the "frosting" but virtually all the ones I collected have it. I have not tried to remove it.


19th Dec 2018 21:58 GMTChris Rayburn

Hello all,

I was fortunate to collect for a few days in Arizona last week. My best day was at the well-known Total Wreck Mine in Pima County. The reputedly terrible road into the mine wasn’t all that terrible, and I had the place to myself on a beautiful day. My best finds were in a small open pit just to the west of the main workings. The pit is guarded by a large bee hive, which I noticed only when the temperatures rose and the bees grew active. I’d been digging right below them. They were almost certainly Africanized, like most hives in Arizona, so I ruled out negotiation and left the pit to them.

Specimen 1b is approximately 3 x 6 cm. The FOV on each of the two close-ups is approximately 2x3 cm.



19th Dec 2018 22:21 GMTChris Rayburn

PS--John, love the hematite included quartz! Here's one from my Colorado stomping grounds. I collected this back in October 2012 at the Rainbow Lode claim (Pennoyer Mine) near Red Feather Lakes, Larimer County. 6 cm in length.

19th Dec 2018 22:37 GMTScott Rider

Nice finds Chris!! I hope those bees protect the hole for you to visit again... Hopefully we can get some more digs this winter if it stays this nice in Colorado!!! Maybe RAMs can schedule a trip to the Pennoyer Mine if its still there... I heard many homes were built over some of the older, most productive digs.... I haven't been there, but I plan on visiting that area next year.

20th Dec 2018 04:34 GMTAaron Verrill

Speaking of J-Law Twins, I collected this andradite specimen in the fall. It has a definite twin on the back, possible twin on the front. 6×6cm.


26th Dec 2018 13:53 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



The story of this specimen goes back to the 1970's. I had taken a trip to Colorado for collecting and asked at the mine office for the Sunnyside Mine about collecting at the mine for rhodonite but they said the mine was closed to collecting but the trucks that went by the office went up a steep hill to a processing plant and often chunks fell from the trucks and I was welcome to pick up any of the pieces with the pink by the road across from the office. I did just that and thanked them and took home a number of nice chunks with many metallics in the white quartz with a lot of pink. Later it turned out what people thought was rhodonite was actually pyroxmangite. I came across a big piece I had in our yard just a couple of days ago and broke it up to see what it held.

Inside were hollow spots in the quartz with small but nice crystals of sphalerite, chalcopyrite and even rhodochrosite but in these pockets I found the tiny needle like crystal groupings. The first photo shows the mostly white crystals that grew in two directions but in one pocket were the dark crystals but in the same habit as the white. I have no idea what the needle crystals are but my guess was some kind of etched rhodochrosite. Would love any input on what those crystals might be.

29th Dec 2018 19:37 GMTGreg Simmons

Back in March we took a trip to Tucson to visit my mother in law. I asked around and was directed to a group of hills that supposedly had an abandoned mine or exploratory dig that was safe to enter. I took my two boys, some tools, and plenty of water :-) and headed out. There were some other people there when we arrived but they were packing up to leave and we got to enter and explore on our own. The entrance is only about 24" high so we had to squeeze in. We found a nice vein of chrysocolla and pulled about 5 pounds out. The first image is of the entrance, the second is of me and the boys inside the mine, and then the vein. The post after has a couple of the pieces we pulled out.



29th Dec 2018 19:42 GMTGreg Simmons

These are a couple of the pieces we collected in the cave.


3rd Jan 2019 19:13 GMTDave Varabioff

Just some funny yellow stuff connected to some funny white stuff!

and yes it's turning out killer. Should be ready today. Dug on Dec 28th/2017


3rd Jan 2019 20:12 GMTAndrew Debnam

Very nice- from where?

3rd Jan 2019 21:27 GMTDave Varabioff

Colorado Quartz Mine. I am the current owner!


4th Jan 2019 06:07 GMTDave Varabioff

Coming alonf

4th Jan 2019 15:24 GMTPaul Brandes Manager

You know Dave, if you don't want that "funny yellow stuff" laying around your house, I'm sure the very helpful folks of Mindat would be happy to take it off your hands....... ;-)

Excellent specimen!

4th Jan 2019 16:55 GMTMatt Courville

Dave, coincidentaly I came across loads of some funny white minerals over here in Ottawa. They occur right on my front lawn!! Since there is so much of it, and if you are willing to trade, I can ship some over there;) I'll have to send it in a cooler though...

Nice finds!

7th Jan 2019 05:09 GMTMatt Ciranni

Photo 1: Agate/Rhyolite nodule, dug in the Succor Creek area in eastern Oregon

2: Same kind of thing- This was a fun day of rock digging for these baseball-sized things (that look like crusty baseballs until one has the foresight to cut them open)

3: Calcium Sulfate deposit, also from the Succor Creek area only a few miles to the north of the baseball agates (and I'll let the viewer decide whether to call it Selenite, Gypsum, or just a plain old Calcium Sulfate deposit. Since that came up recently.)

9th Jan 2019 12:21 GMTAaron Verrill

Found a nice chunk of chalcedony in a rhyolite matrix. Found in a stream bed near the Kishu copper mine, Mie Japan. Two pics of specimen wet and dry for contrast. Surprisingly it flouresces orange under black light, but my phone camera couldn't pick up the color.


9th Jan 2019 13:45 GMTAndré Heyninck

Lompret quarry Belgium.

Calcite geode. Found autumn 2018. Because there was a lot of clay, it was not so easy to see the undamaged calcite.



9th Jan 2019 14:03 GMTGregg Little

Matt Ciranni;

I would just call the specimen gypsum as selenite is usually reserved for well crystallized specimens (clean, sharp, translucent to clear, etc.).

10th Jan 2019 11:51 GMTChris Rayburn

Very clean crystals Andre.

11th Jan 2019 17:06 GMTScott Rider

Here's a good find for the 2019 year, found on January 5th!!!

Heres a unique 3cm red chalcedony pseudomorph of a complex calcite crystal (albeit it is broken and repaired). I have a new spot that produces red pseduos, this location has produced a lot of blue in the past so this is a good sign that my new spot is going to pan out!! Unfortunately the weather finally turned to winter here in Colorado. So I'll have to be patient to see what else this spot produces!

I hate my phone's camera. But I cannot locate my good camera unfortunately... A DSLR is in my near future...


11th Jan 2019 23:55 GMTDon Saathoff Expert

Wow, Scott! I just finished a slice of Pound Cake with a spread of cherry pie filling covered with a layer of whipped cream - the cherries looked just like your red chalcedony.....delicious!!


14th Jan 2019 08:55 GMTDale Foster Expert

My first two finds of 2019 that are worth taking pictures of:

From the 5th January:

From 13th January:

14th Jan 2019 19:41 GMTMatt Ciranni


Another Succor Creek area agate, this one a pure rounded nodule around two inches across, with really nice yellow and white banding. I didn't even need to cut it to show it off. It was just sitting on a hillside like this.

Agate again, though this one is from the Challis (central Idaho) area. This is typical of what they look like from this area when big enough to slice.

Flourite, from an abandoned mine complex about 40 miles northwest of Challis, Idaho. This isn't Illinois, so the fluorite from around here isn't as colorful or as nice as what they have in other parts of the country. This has nice crystal form though, if nothing else.

14th Jan 2019 21:34 GMTBob Harman

MATT, Are you sure your last photo is of fluorite? Looks to me like it could be pseudocubic quartz looking like fluorite. We have many examples of this quartz variety in Indiana geodes. How big are each of the little cubes?

There is a thread here on Mindat with a number of examples, including 2 of mine, and a recent article in Rock & Gem periodical on this subject. CHEERS.....BOB

14th Jan 2019 22:49 GMTMs.Michal Wintz

Wowzer that's amazing.

15th Jan 2019 11:41 GMTChris Rayburn

Hi Matt--is that fluorite from Meyers Cove? If so, it's often coated with a thin frosting of quartz, which could give it the appearance of pseudocubic quartz.

15th Jan 2019 19:25 GMTMatt Ciranni

It is from the Meyers Cove area, yes. (nice guess!) Most of the cubes are in the 3/16"-1/4" range. (roughly 6-9mm) I don't consider it all that attractive myself, but that's about par for the course for the Fluorite specimens from this area. There are pieces with better color up here but no crystal form, and the ones with crystal form don't have much color or clarity- it's rare to find both desirable traits in a single specimen from here.

16th Jan 2019 11:28 GMTChris Rayburn

I've only collected at Meyers Cove once (long ago, when I was posted in Challis) but I do remember the overall specimen quality being so-so relative to better known fluorite localities. Then again, Idaho is blessed with many other superb minerals!

26th Jan 2019 13:12 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



These are a couple close up photos of things I collected at the Texas Arizona Mine near Dragoon Arizona in 2012. The road to the property is now gated and locked unfortunately.

22nd Feb 2019 13:45 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert


This is a group of limonite pseudomorphs after pyrite from the Dragoon Mountains in SE Arizona. Collected at the Ligier Marble Quarry a while ago but took photos of them just yesterday. A few of the crystals are magnetic, believe this is from lightning that hit the ridge with the crystals before they weathered out. The smaller ones are quite sharp since they have not been carried far from their original location in the schist they were in.

22nd Feb 2019 16:01 GMTPaul Brandes Manager

Way to go, Rolf!

22nd Feb 2019 19:59 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

My son Daniel and I spent part of a day at Gringo Gulch, near Patagonia, AZ, two days ago and collected some nice quartz crystals (including a 3cm reverse sceptre) and quartz pseudomorphs after fluorite(?) at the quartz location PLUS my first vanadinite and descloizite. Secondary minerals! Kinda cool for guys from Canada where very few secondary minerals exist. Here are a few photos.



22nd Feb 2019 20:04 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

Here are some of the descloizite on quartz from the JC Holmes Claim at Gringo Gulch -all micro.



22nd Feb 2019 20:08 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

And, of course, vanadinite! All micros. The last pic are some dark minerals on quartz. the crystals may be descloizite or...?



22nd Feb 2019 20:21 GMTDavid K. Joyce Expert

OH! and the quartz pseudomorphs after, I guess, fluorite. The pseudo's are totally hollow with no trace or hint of the previous mineral. No secondary minerals present. I found quite a few of these pseudomorphs at the "Quartz" location at Gringo Gulch, not the JC Holmes Claim. They are associated with full quartz crystals and sometimes calcite. The octahedra in the photos are up to 5mm or so on edge.


22nd Feb 2019 20:43 GMTErik Vercammen Expert

The unknown dark mineral may be mottramite.

25th Feb 2019 19:52 GMTRolf Luetcke Expert



These are two pieces of chalcedony-jasper collected in Dry Canyon, Cochise County, Arizona. The interesting thing here is one time collecting there my wife Mary found an arrowhead made from this material and an abundance of the material was in the same canyon. This was a bit unusual since just about all the arrowheads we have found over the years were not made of material found in the same canyon. Unfortunately she gave the arrowhead to a child not long after she had found it. I had looked for it the other day and she said she had given it away. She had found it and has always been very generous with her finds toward kids.

Just thought the little story was of interest and I am sure there are a number of people who collect arrowheads on mindat.

27th Mar 2019 08:08 GMTDale Foster Expert

A hand specimen of quartz matrix with Fluorite crystals, found on the 26th March 2019 at the Wheal Buller Mine site:

On the reverse of the piece this was noted when a little of the red mud was scraped off:

After careful cleaning this was revealed:

Considering this specimen was hauled out of the mine as waste, then thrown onto the burrows where it has sat for over 100 years, it is a remarkably good specimen.

View of whole specimen after cleaning:

Smaller crystals in near perfect condition deeper in the vug:

The main 10 mm crystal:

23rd Apr 2019 23:00 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice Fluorite Dale. As spring is here I have been tasked with cleaning out the garage. This find from the Cobalt area happened to ready for freshen up. Now it is in the house.

Native silver with Cobalt arsenide and some fine pale green Tremolite crystals. 11cm 546 grams

24th Apr 2019 06:35 BSTDale Foster Expert

Nice little rich Cassiterite specimen collected on the morning of Easter Sunday 2019, from dumps on the Wheal Vincent section of the Wheal Lushington / West Wheal Towan group of mines:

The same specimen following a good clean:

24th Apr 2019 23:55 BSTJobe Giles

Some new perspectives on old finds.

BBC Mine, El dorado County, CA.

Self collected 2016-2018



20th May 2019 22:47 BSTChris Rayburn

What better use of a cold, soggy day than to photograph some new finds? This is a sculptural, deep green, octahedral fluorite cluster from a vein near the Last Chance Mine, Gila Fluorspar District, Grant County, New Mexico, collected in mid-April. 5 x 6 x 11 cm; largest crystals are 3.5 cm on edge.


21st May 2019 01:41 BSTJobe Giles

Quartz with Chlorite, Muscovite, and clay inclusions on 2x2” block for scale.

Chlorite included Quartz on 2x2” block for scale.

Quartz with Hematite, Rutile, and unknown red inclusions.

Collected in different localities in El Dorado co. CA

21st May 2019 05:06 BSTJobe Giles




21st May 2019 05:23 BSTJobe Giles

This plate is 13” from point to point and 6” wide. The smoky quartz crystal is 4” long. This plate has black tourmaline, Muscovite, microcline and another feldspar of unknown species. This unknown feldspar is a blue green color. The blue green feldspar grew over the graphic granite in the pocket wall.



21st May 2019 19:22 BSTScott Rider

Here are some Hartsel baryte found on a club trip last weekend. I think we all got a ton of crystals of varying qualities. I haven't upwrapped my best but here are some of my favorites that I have cleaned thus far. Please excuse my garbage photos, my phone camera is a joke and I am awaiting a new, better camera since someone stole my good camera last year...

6x4 cm, does have interesting color zoning:



21st May 2019 19:25 BSTScott Rider

These 2 specimens were cleaned with only water and a toothbrush. No soap or acids thankfully were needed to clean them. In fact, most of the smaller to medium size XL's I found had very little crusts, just a bunch of dirt!



21st May 2019 19:54 BSTKevin Conroy Expert

Nice finds Scott! Were they laying loose on the surface, or did you let them sit in the sun to turn blue?

21st May 2019 20:16 BSTScott Rider

Thanks Kevin. No, these were dug from about 3-4 feet into the soil. And because of that, we were all questioning how the heck some of them came out really blue... I found a couple that were much more blue than the images in this topic. I'll post those later.

One theory was that they were on top of the ground, turned blue, and then were bulldozed into the piles that lay today... I just can't see how they stayed in decent condition while being bulldozed into a pile... I haven't looked into the history of this deposit myself, but I was told that in the 1940's the US government bulldozed this area to get to the baryte for the war effort...

I did see layers of what looked like it was part of a tailing pile. First there is a tannish layer, which hosts some baryte. Then there are darker red and brown zones (with rounded glacial rock) that, for the most part, are devoid of baryte. Then under that layer is iron oxide colored dirt (red and yellow), that holds the best of the baryte... And finally, a black soot/soil layer (full of river/glacial rock), that is supposedly not part of the bulldozing. I did not dig deeper than the black soil zone so I can't attest if there are baryte specimens in or under that layer... But I was told by an experienced digger who said he did dig below that layer and believes it is part of the original hill. However, some of the best pieces I found were on the borders of the layers.

In addition, I found quite a few that were purely white in the same zone, and I have put those in the sun and they are turning blue. So, honestly, I have no idea how these two were blue and NOT exposed to the sun. Perhaps they were blue in-situ all along...

21st May 2019 20:29 BSTScott Rider

A couple more. The first one is a cool bi-color floater, and the 2nd is a fat, thick crystal with some white zones on the termination. The thicker they get, the darker and more saturated the color can be!!! And some come out bi-color, with blue and yellow zoning. In those specimens, it appears that the blue is a phantom and the yellow color was the last to deposit. I haven't seen a yellow with blue outer zoning. Only blue cores!!

Then there are some that have white layers on the terminations. Those are more tabular in shape, but I found them up to 4 inches!!



21st May 2019 21:09 BSTJobe Giles

Scott, those a great! Must have been a fun dig!

21st May 2019 21:19 BSTScott Rider

Thanks Jobe!! Your digs look quite productive! I have to get out to that area, as I am more accustomed to pegmatite prospecting.

It was definitely a fun dig, as I haven't been in that area before! Its a cool place too, albeit the wind was a little annoying, especially after a 9 hour dig!! The wind almost knocked me down, as I was really tired and the wind was quite gusty toward the end of the day as a storm was coming into the area.

21st May 2019 23:14 BSTJobe Giles

That’s nuts! It does get blowing out there! Always makes the experience more memorable.

21st May 2019 23:20 BSTJobe Giles

Check these out from a recent dig. My understanding is that hematite balls are “rare”. 1”crystal...



21st May 2019 23:25 BSTScott Rider

Indeed! But from what I heard from the guy who has dug there dozens of times, it never stops!! Its on a hill that isn't steep, in the middle of a valley that is always windy! So I guess I shouldn't be surprised it was windy up there. But there is one major advantage to winds -- that it blows all the dust away from when I am mucking out the hole! Makes it easier to breath! : )

21st May 2019 23:30 BSTJobe Giles

This one is mounted on a 1x1” block.


19th Jun 2019 20:04 BSTAndrew Debnam

A recent find from the Cobalt area. Silver in calcite which has been cleaned up a scrub brush and soap. It is pictured beside a spike for mine cart rails. 1lb 8 oz


19th Jun 2019 21:45 BSTJobe Giles

Very nice find Andrew! Do you know the purity of the silver?

20th Jun 2019 13:15 BSTAndrew Debnam

This would be considered high grade piece Jobe. There are some associated cobalt-nickel minerals and the silver contain elements like Antimony but I would guess well north of 50 percent. I have also attached a pic of some pieces I just cut from this trip.

21st Jun 2019 13:41 BSTChris Rayburn

Great find Andrew. Did you use a metal detector?

21st Jun 2019 16:38 BSTScott Rider

Found these last weekend right before a nasty thunderstorm hit. From Hartsel claims in Colorado.

A very good seam of numerous large clusters were found like this one. Its just been rinsed but not totally cleaned, but it has dozens of nice terminated crystals. It has not been in the sun so it could get more blue:

Some crystals from this spot had thick terminations and blue color right out of the ground with no known exposure to the sun. I found that some that were blue like that got really deep blue in color after being in the sun.

Some were faden like in their structure.

21st Jun 2019 17:00 BSTJobe Giles

Those are really cool! Love the colors!

21st Jun 2019 17:01 BSTAndrew Debnam

@ Chris, yes with a metal detector. I use a Fisher F75 to locate the specimen and then a pin pointer to zero in on it.

@Scott, nice finds

21st Jun 2019 19:57 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

Collected these in the Reward Mine, Inyo Co, Ca.


Hemimorphite coated with Calcite

Gold in Quartz (~2mm)

21st Jun 2019 20:01 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

More from the Reward.

Caledonite and Linarite on Quartz

Close up - linarite maybe altering to something.

21st Jun 2019 20:06 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

And lastly.

Wulfenite on Mottramite(?)

Close up - not sure what the acicular minerals around the base are.

Wulfenite on Mottramite(?) and Chrysocolla

21st Jun 2019 20:06 BSTMatt Ciranni

Scott- are those calcite?

They do have nice color to them.

21st Jun 2019 20:46 BSTScott Rider

Sorry I forgot to mention that is Baryte.

21st Jun 2019 22:13 BSTChris Rayburn

Brad, beautiful finds. Were those found on the dumps or underground?

21st Jun 2019 22:34 BSTChris Rayburn

Can't let Scott have all the fun! Here's another Hartsel, Colorado blue barite, approx. 6 x 7 cm. I found this on an exceedingly windy club field trip with Scott and others back in May.

21st Jun 2019 22:35 BSTChris Rayburn

Andrew, thanks. I need to become better acquainted with metal detectors!

22nd Jun 2019 04:53 BSTBrad von Dessonneck

Hi Chris, they were collected underground.

27th Jun 2019 02:16 BSTAndrew Debnam

@ Chris and Scott, love the blue Baryte.

@ Brad - great finds

here is one more from Cobalt- Silver in Dolomite, I am going up to the Bancroft Ontario area shortly to some more collecting.

1st Jul 2019 19:14 BSTMatt Courville

So many great finds as well as variety!!

Two sites - 1st is the Clyde Forks mine, which was not easy to locate, but neat because of it's adit and azurite/malachite quite uncommon for this region of Ontario.

2nd site - the western edge of the Marcy anorthosite massif along a high peak trail - labradorite, which requires decent natural sunlight and moisture to show well until it is polished



1st Jul 2019 19:16 BSTMatt Courville




1st Jul 2019 19:42 BSTJobe Giles

Fantastic material Matt! Must have been fun exploring those spots!

1st Jul 2019 23:21 BSTJobe Giles

Nifty smoky with Tourmaline, Feldspar, and Muscovite. Pulled from a pocket that yielded several pounds of euhedral blackish tourmaline. Annoying that they turned sideways.



1st Jul 2019 23:57 BSTScott Rider

Does anyone know the cause of the sideways images. I have a couple like that and they were not orientated that way on my camera. Is there something we can do prior to uploading? Its pretty annoying LOL!!!

2nd Jul 2019 00:12 BSTDon Saathoff Expert

What I find interesting is that they re-orient to portrait when you click on them. Something to do with the auto-orientation in the cell phone???

2nd Jul 2019 06:57 BSTDon Windeler

I can't say anything about the underlying cause of the rotation changes with any certainty. Using pure empiricism, however, I've noted that if you do any kind of image cropping, even a little, photosstay in the orientation you set at that point. If not, it's a crapshoot as to what you get through the auto-orientation.



2nd Jul 2019 14:24 BSTAndrew Debnam

Great finds everyone.

Interesting to find Azurite Matt!

Cannot help on the orientation issue but is odd for sure.

2nd Jul 2019 14:24 BSTAndrew Debnam

Great finds everyone.

Interesting to find Azurite Matt!

Cannot help on the orientation issue but is odd for sure.

2nd Jul 2019 14:24 BSTAndrew Debnam

Great finds everyone.

Interesting to find Azurite Matt!

Cannot help on the orientation issue but is odd for sure.

2nd Jul 2019 14:24 BSTAndrew Debnam

Great finds everyone.

Interesting to find Azurite Matt!

Cannot help on the orientation issue but is odd for sure.

Edit- sorry for the multiple posts- no idea how I did that. Seems happen on my mobile sometimes..

2nd Jul 2019 15:52 BSTJobe Giles

Don, it happens to about 50% of my cropped photos, and to none of my unedited original photos. That was my guess as well. I’m guessing it had something to do with ratios between the two sides.

5th Jul 2019 05:06 BSTKyle Bayliff

I posted this to the Facebook page earlier, but thought I'd share here, too.

Here's one of my favorite finds from my collecting trip today: Chrysotile on serpentine from the Stifle Claims, Traverse Creek Special Interest Area, near Georgetown, CA. 20x magnification (I know the focus is a little off, but I did 'asbestos' I could :D ) The chrysotile band is about 1-2 mm wide.


8th Jul 2019 12:22 BSTDale Foster Expert

Found early on Sunday 7th July at dump on the Pell section of St Agnes Consols, a 3mm solid venlet of Cassiterite in matrix, seen here having just broken part of the specimen and showing lots of organics coating it. Pip looks on patiently:

The specimen following a good clean:

8th Jul 2019 15:29 BSTScott Rider

Cute dog Dale!!! Looks like he is waiting patiently for a bite out of what you found LOL!!!

8th Jul 2019 16:00 BSTAndrew Debnam

Looks like a very happy Dog as well Dale. Attached are pictures of a Fluorapatite and Titanite found this week in the Bancroft Ontario area.


15th Jul 2019 17:36 BSTJobe Giles

Bent contact free floater. Evidently it was bent prior to becoming a floater, where it healed and contact points.

15th Jul 2019 22:00 BSTMarcus Voigt


its late here and I am tired to search the "in Situ" Thread, but before go to bed

Titanite x from Bulgaria ( May 2019 )

unfortunately repaired, but better than nothing

62x25x15mm, 37 gramm


my current photos are still waiting for confirmation

All the best


16th Jul 2019 15:29 BSTMatt Courville

Fantastic Marcus! I love the firey nature of the 2nd photo.

I wish more people posted or were willing to purchase repaired minerals. As a collector, I've collected and seen others with very nice stuff come out in 2+ parts, but were the absolute best of its kind from the site. I think people have to shed their ideas of only seeing minerals as financial investments.

16th Jul 2019 16:26 BSTScott Rider

I agree Matt, people should be more open to repairs, I'd sell a lot more if they were. Quite a few of the specimens I find in the field are broken in-situ... Especially in pegmatites (but also in any deposit really)... Some high end collectors seem to have no issues paying huge sums of money for the amazonite/smoky combos. Many of the specimens found in those pegmatites are broken and separated by eons of hydrothermal activity, weathering and possibly tectonic movements and then carefully, painfully put back together. I know of one guy that excels at this, but takes a LONG time to piece all the crystals together...

Its quite rare to find huge specimens from Lake George and similar deposits intact. I know one guy who found a 3 foot wide amazonite smoky combo in Harris Park, fantastic color and resembles the quality of Lake George. He said that was pure luck, the only one found intact as he did find many other huge plates that had to be pieced together.

Then you have places like Blanchard Mine in New Mexico. The deposit there has many intact GIGANTIC plates of fluorite, but if you try to extract them, they tend to fall apart unless you can chisel/cut around the pieces with some really good saw... So it can also be extraction as the cause of specimens being repaired... Had I the strength, tools and insight on how to extract, there was a pocket of fluorite deeper than my entire body, if you could get it out in one piece, it would be 6-7 feet long by 4-5 feet wide, with crystals up to 8-9 inches, and TONS of modified galena cubes (with white mineral crusts of angelsite/cerrusite?).... The mine owner said he would eventually take them out in dozens of specimens when he gets the chance...

16th Jul 2019 17:39 BSTJobe Giles

For me personally, I have learned to photo document as much as possible in the moment. I have found that, obviously, much of the material that comes out of a pocket will piece together to form much larger pieces rather than large numbers of individuals. I try to separate all contacted and broken pieces. Later after cleaning and when I have spare time, I will do my best to piece as much of the pocket together as is possible. Sometimes this does nothing for the aesthetics of a piece that may look better as an individual. Other times the results are spectacular. I’ll see if I can find some repaired minerals I have collected. BTW, a totally awesome thread subject...

This one was two, nothing special, has a tourmaline needle running through one of the terminations.

This one double terminated floater cluster was 4 pieces. It took me a long time to find all the pieces and in fact it’s still missing a tiny fifth crystal.

This piece is 13” long and about 4-5” wide & tall. It came out in about 20-25 pieces but I was only able to piece back together 13 of them. We had tossed stuff that didn’t have terminations, I have since collected some of that stuff and repaired it but they still don’t all fit together with this chunk.

16th Jul 2019 17:48 BSTJobe Giles

Here’s a photo of the tourmaline in the termination of the pair posted above.

19th Jul 2019 17:18 BSTSean

Here’s one of my recent findings that I’ve found in California.

19th Jul 2019 20:53 BSTAndrew Debnam

Nice Garnet Sean, from where in California?

Attached is Silver veinlets in Calcite from Cobalt (8cm 320gr or 11.3oz)

19th Jul 2019 21:30 BSTSean

In the Calaveras County (near Sacramento). I found this Andradite at Garnet Hill.

19th Jul 2019 21:37 BSTAndrew Debnam

Well done, must have been fun

19th Jul 2019 22:09 BSTSean

It was, but it was quite trickier than collecting in Ontario. Especially when I was collecting in Bishop, the other locality that I went to. It was hot in Bishop (hotter than Canada's temperature) but, thankfully, there were wind-chills. However, the trickiest part wasn't the temperature alone; I had to walk for like minutes for both of the localities that I went to this year, and while at it, I had to carry a bunch of stuff with me (like bottles of drinks).

19th Jul 2019 22:35 BSTAaron Lindgren

I have been doing some prospecting and have found mostly drift material from what I believe to be one (or more) collapsed pegmatite pockets in an area of Connecticut unknown to produce colored tourmalines. Most of the pieces of elbaite I have recovered are small and fractured but the colors are deep and amazing! I cannot find any reference to purple tourmaline occurring anywhere in the Connecticut.

I will also include some photos of several smoky quartz crystals I have recovered.



19th Jul 2019 22:39 BSTAaron Lindgren

Sorry for the novice photography and here are some smokies...



19th Jul 2019 22:46 BSTAaron Lindgren

...lastly two Native American artifacts I also recovered in and around the drift materials the first is knapped from milky quartz from the immediate area and the other is a finished but broken projectile point knapped from a high grade translucent flint/chert from well outside Connecticut's borders.


20th Jul 2019 00:21 BSTJeremy A. Zolan

Aaron, those are some fantastic finds. I think finding a new site for colored tourmaline is one of the ultimate dream come true collecting experiences in the state.

I am no longer an active field collector but for years I enjoyed prospecting and found a few neat things in the woods. There is plenty of things left but patience is required to find and be able to collect them.

Here is some fluorite and some smoky quartz with orange crusty hemimorphite from one of the spots that provided me with countless dozens of hours of enjoyment in the forest of Connecticut. It took a lot of prospecting to find this site but I was able to do so by having a good scientific knowledge base and spending lots of time just walking and looking.


20th Jul 2019 01:05 BSTJobe Giles

Jeremy, those are killer pieces! Great to see some of your contributions here!

20th Jul 2019 01:40 BSTAaron Lindgren

Nice Jeremy!

And I agree with you; knowledge is a huge part of prospecting. As, especially in my case a fair amount of luck too. I am also always looking and hiking. That fluorite is a nice shade of purple!

I should have mentioned that the locality where the tourmaline is coming from is not in Middlesex or Hartford County, which again from the research I've done, has never been documented.

When I lifted the first piece of what I though was dusty schorl up to the sun and it illuminated a grassy green, I thought I must have been dreaming.

20th Jul 2019 03:01 BSTJeremy A. Zolan

Luck is a huge part in collecting. Being in the right place at the right time is key. Still, there are a lot of clues and signs that can help you zero in on regions to search. I feel like it is nearly impossible to grasp most geological areas of interest in one trip unless there are absolutely no signs, even indirect ones. A good one to increase your probability of finding minerals is focusing on covering area and not distance i.e. covering surface area of mountains, ridges, etc when exhibiting features you do not fully understand the trajectory/structural geology of yet.

28th Jul 2019 16:16 BSTSean

Here are a few pictures of Grossulars that I’ve collect at Coyote Range in Bishop, California. The sizes of them in these photos range from 6 - 21mm.



3rd Aug 2019 04:22 BSTSean

Here are some more pictures of the stuff that I’ve collected in California.


3rd Aug 2019 16:25 BSTAndrew Debnam

Neat stuff Sean, attached is some Tremolite from the Bancroft area found this week.

4th Aug 2019 21:07 BSTChris Rayburn

Nice finds Sean and Andrew.

Sean, I especially like that single crystal perched on quartz. Were those etched from calcite?

Andrew, are those Grace Lake?

5th Aug 2019 00:32 BSTSean

The one that’s perched on Quartz, is an Andradite and no, I didn’t use acid on that one. But the other one, that’s a Grossular, was etched in acid.

5th Aug 2019 03:18 BSTSteve Hardinger Expert

Sean, check your garnets under shortwave UV. Sometimes they have scheelite.

5th Aug 2019 03:38 BSTAndrew Debnam

Hey Chris, these are not from Grace Lake. I found them in a newly expanded road cut about 25km south of Bancroft


5th Aug 2019 12:12 BSTDale Foster Expert

A hand specimen of Siderite with Galena from an old location that is now largely obliterated:

The Wheal Boys site is now unrecognisable as being an old mine, the only giveaway is occasional pieces of mineralised mine waste built into some local buildings.

This specimen was found in a hedge at the site, unfortunately the crystals are a bit the worse for wear, but given it has probably sat there for over a century, the condition isn't too bad and is a decent specimen from this location.

The piece when found felt excessively heavy for Siderite alone and following a clean and trimming displayed a rich core of Galena:

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