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Michael Grieve's Photo Gallery

Washing bedrock

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Using a pump and 1.5" fire hose to wash overburden off the bedrock, summer of 1988. The rock outcrop to the left is the "discovery" outcrop for the main amethyst showing. The 8' by 12' prospector tent in the background served as our home away from home for many mining seasons. By 1993, the ground we're standing on had been drilled and blasted 8' lower. One of the finest pockets we have ever discovered was found under where the tent sits.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 940015     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 21   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3884 x 2604 pixels (10.1 Mpix)

End of the road.

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

For the first 10 mining seasons, our access was via an 11km round-trip trail cut from the nearest forestry road. The first two of those years were walking access only; with a huge amount of manual labour, we eventually made the trail passable by ATV. In this photo, the John Deere 790 backhoe throws the final few buckets of earth to complete the new access road, finally allowing us to drive a truck right to the site. The water in the foreground is spring runoff collected in one of the first pits we hand-dug on the amethyst vein.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 939994     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 11   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3792 x 2508 pixels (9.5 Mpix)

Building the access road.

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Building the final stretch of road into the mine site.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 939978     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 11   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3880 x 2604 pixels (10.1 Mpix)

Crystal Pocket

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

While we carried a pail of muck to the waste dump, Willow took advantage of our absence to crawl into the coolness of the pocket mud and fall asleep. It was a rather hot day, so we took the hint and let her nap for awhile, before resuming crystal extraction.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 934962     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 37   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3264 x 2448 pixels (8.0 Mpix)

FFN-M70Quartz (Var: Amethyst), Quartz

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Dimensions: 20 cm x 10 cm x 8 cm

Beautiful, bright purple amethyst crystals with minor hematite inclusions. Collected from Two Dog Vug in the summer of 2017. The pocket was notable for huge, bright red, hematite coated crystals to 20cm in diameter, thus making this cluster a big surprise. It appears that after the formation of the hematite-rich large crystals, the pocket collapsed. A later phase of silica-rich solution then percolated into the fragmented pocket and formed the purple crystals. In rare instances, we have observed the small, purple crystals formed on the chevron "root" of a large red crystal.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 934961     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 30   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3264 x 2448 pixels (8.0 Mpix)

2U0-4EDQuartz

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Field of View: 7 cm

Over the years, we have occasionally encountered small amounts of green quartz in the amethyst veins. In 2018, a small pod yielded the most pronounced green we have seen on the site in our 37 years of mining. The tumbled pieces are approximately 2.5cm wide; the round brilliant cut gemstone weighs 4.5 ct.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 934946     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 14   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 2679 x 2143 pixels (5.7 Mpix)

PTY-MX1Quartz (Var: Amethyst), Hematite

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Dimensions: 35 cm x 22 cm x 20 cm

Willow poses beside the largest crystal we have mined in 36 seasons. This beauty came from Two Dog Vug in September of 2017.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 845733     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 111   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 2211 x 1564 pixels (3.5 Mpix)

VEJ-GFGQuartz (Var: Amethyst), Hematite, Quartz

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Dimensions: 13 cm x 8 cm x 1 cm
Weight: 165 g

A polished cross section cut from a large amethyst crystal. The striking pattern shows multiple phases of crystal growth. The varying colors are a result of subtle differences in the trace minerals present. Toward the end of the crystal's formation, a red hematite-rich layer can be seen. Ultimately, the crystal was capped with a very dark layer of smoky quartz. Mined from Krista's vein, summer 2002.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 806633     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 70   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 2974 x 1985 pixels (5.9 Mpix)

Hanging Wall of Two Dog Vug

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Willow the mine dog is caught in a yawn as she relaxes on the hanging wall side of Two Dog Vug. The surface expression of the vug measures roughly 3m x 2m, and has yielded large, red, hematite coated amethyst crystals to 20cm in diameter. A small, secondary amethyst vein and vug is exposed at the right of the photo. The host rock is a pink, medium grained, equigranular granite.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 805749     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 70   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 2505 x 2142 pixels (5.4 Mpix)

CMY-FCPQuartz (Var: Amethyst)

Purple Haze Amethyst Mine, Tartan Lake area, Thunder Bay District, Ontario, Canada

Field of View: 200 cm

Willow, the newest member of our mining crew, poses with chunks of amethyst vein we scratched out of the overburden west of the main pit. Color ranges from light lavender to dark purple, and even some green quartz. The fall of 2016 has been unusually warm, allowing us to continue prospecting and mining well into November.
Copyright: © Michael Grieve, www.purplehazeamethyst.com      Photo ID: 785194     Uploaded by: Michael Grieve   View Count: 131   Approval status: Public galleries    Type: Photo - 3264 x 2448 pixels (8.0 Mpix)
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