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Category: Rock and Gem

Rock Hunting North of Winnemucca

Rock Hunting North of Winnemucca

My adventure last week up in the more northerly areas of Central Nevada was a pretty hot trip at this time of year.  Luckily there was a reservoir to cool off at and also a mountain road that was wooded and had a few springs and creeks to explore when the midday sun was blazing — not to mention a great hot springs to soak in as the sun set.

The rocks were really not located at “sites”.  They were just scattered around the landscapes so I did a lot of driving and stopping here and there and wandering around.  Most of the rock were almost stereotypical for what I’ve seen in the state so far.

There was a lot of light green potch (common opal) that mostly was the type that shatters into a million pieces if struck. Yet now and again there was some that was mixed with agate and held up a little better.  In the rock below there’s a mix of green agate and green opal and some inclusions that may make some nice cabs or slabs.

 

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The agate is mostly multi-colored, with a host of earthtones.

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Petrified wood also is scattered throughout the region, however, I was not able to find a source. The wood is pretty well agatized and on most of it there is enough banding that it will make good cutting and cabbing material.

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This piece of jasparized wood is absolutely lovely in person and has this type of banding on every side, making it hard to decide which way would be best to cut it.  Maybe I’ll just polish off some of the white agate coating and leave it in one piece.

 

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There were also a few spots with fossils on the trip, but these were from South of Winnemucca at a little side jaunt I took on the way home.

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And, of course, here’s an obligatory picture of some red and yellow jasper, because, God knows, you can’t go very far in Nevada without picking up a hunk or two of red and yellow jasper.

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So there’s the sample of what can be found in the north central regions of the state.  Now it’s time to decide which area to explore next.

Until next time;

Life’s short –  Rock hard

Heads Up Rockhounds — DUGWAY GEODE CLAIM

Heads Up Rockhounds — DUGWAY GEODE CLAIM

Save the Geodes! The BLM is threatening to close the only commercial claim on the Dugway Geode beds, in operation for the last 50 years, because the renewal paperwork was late this year. The claim is run by the Crapo family under the business name “The Bug House” and new mining claims will not be issued by the BLM for any commercial geode mining because the geode bed is a restricted area.

Public response to urge renewal of the claim is critical. The Crapo family has always supported the rock hound community and made sure that anyone who collected on their claim came away with lots of good geodes. Now it’s our turn to support them so please get the word out to anyone interested in preserving this important collection area.

Please send your emails in support of renewing this important claim to the following email addresses at the BLM and bcc the bughouse at their address below, so they can see who is supporting their efforts.

Deputy State Director Lands & Minerals: Kent Hoffman E-mail: khoffman@blm.gov

Minerals Support Supervisor: Robert L Bankert E-mail: rbankert@blm.gov

Bureau of Land Management Fillmore Field Office E-mail: utfmmail@blm.gov

The Bug House E-mail: bughouse@xmission.com

Thank you,

Golden Spike Gem & Mineral Society

November 29, 2015

Picture Tour of 2015 RHS1 Style: The Year in Member Rocks and Crafts

Picture Tour of 2015 RHS1 Style: The Year in Member Rocks and Crafts

2015 got off to a rocky start, well…..a not so rocky start actually……….when the Memorial Day meet-up in McDermitt was canceled due to rain and ice.  The year didn’t continue on that way for some members, though.  For others it was a bit of a slow year for hunts and meet-ups.. You know how it is – sometimes life just gets in the way of getting to your favorite spots or hoped for exploration areas.  That didn’t slow these insanely dedicated rockhounds on RHS1 down much though.  It just gave them some time to do some work on their rocks…………and the outcomes were nothing less than spectacular.

So……………..grab a cup of coffee, sit back, and enjoy this little picture tour of 2015 RHS1 style.

Member: Coldwatergold

Anyone who’s hung around the RHS1 forum for any length of time knows real well that if you stick a rock in front of coldwatergold it’s going to end up slabbed, cabbed, and wire wrapped. Whenever weather won’t permit him to be out playing  Jacques Cousteau in the stream on his claim or wandering aimlessly across any area he can get to in search of more rock to play with, he’s in his shop working like an elf in December, slabbing, cabbing and wrapping anything he can get his hands on.   Below is a small sample of some of his work.

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I think you’ll agree that he does some pretty nice work. Of course, when you’re bringing home rock like the one below, I presume it makes it a lot easier to make great cabs, too.

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Member Lizziebird

Being from North Carolina, Lizziebird really enjoys seeing  and trading for what those of us out in the west are picking up and bringing home.  We  kinda feel sorry for her – being stuck out there on the other side of the US from so many of us where she only has….um…..hundreds of minerals to hunt for must be a real trial for her.  She sent the picture below to me describing these as some of the more “everyday” finds in NC.  If these are everyday rocks for her, you can imagine what she considers a “great find”.   Below the pic I’ve posted her description of these beauties that she cabbed.

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Top row, L to R, agate from a creek in central NC, pink corundum from NC mountains, blue feldspar (amazonite) from abandoned mica mine in NC mountains, pink feldspar from same abandoned mica mine in NC mountains, and white feldspar (with moonstone-like flashes) from same abandoned mica mine in NC mountains.  Bottom row is minerals from a quarry in central NC, including quartz, feldspar, jasper, epidote, and a touch of pyrite.

Member: Cobbledstone

Cobbledstone might be fairly new to the forums, but he isn’t  a newcomer to rock hunting or crafting.  He’s been at it long enough to be a little bit savvy about seeing value in rocks that others pass up.  I’m thinkin’ from the pics below he might be a little more foaming at the mouth crazy about rocks than we realized. Here he tells a little bit about his following pics:

This is my favorite creation of 2015, a necklace made out of beads that I crafted.  The material is white chalcedony that I collected out of the Willamette River.  In this area, there is some carnelian, but most of the time, the color in these rocks is only on the surface.  Lots of folks consider these white in the center rocks junk, but I went out searching for them, and selected only one ones with the nicest creamy center.  Then I made beads out of them.  It took a 5 gallon bucket of rough to produce this necklace.

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Cobbledstone also makes Christmas ornaments with this beautiful, milky stone.

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The snowmen, I hang by tying a scarf out of ribbon around their neck, and hooking wire to the scarf on the back side. This material makes really cool Christmas ornaments, because it catches the light, and almost glows on the tree.

Member: Oxenkiller

For some members who are lucky enough to live close to the rocks or have the fortune of having time to get to them, finding the stones still remains their favorite pass time.  Member Oxenkiller isn’t one to pass up an opportunity to be out there looking. Little does he realize that hanging around RHS1 as much as he does, it won’t be long before he starts getting an unquenchable craving to start making things out of stone, too. With finds like the ones in his pics below, none of us are going to be surprised when it happens.

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Member: Markphoto3

On RHS1, Markphoto3 is our go-to guy for spheres. He does beautiful work, and a few other members are fortunate enough to have one that was done by him.  I’ve hunted with him, and can tell you that this guy covers territory in the field like a bloodhound on the trail of a deer. You never realize how far he gets in just a little time until you pick him up on his way back and go rescue his backpack where he had to drop his too-heavy-to-carry-all-that-way load. The method in his addiction works for him though as you can see by these beautiful works below.

The first of these pics is my favorite because it’s made from the wood from a site I discovered earlier. Yes – that green rock is wood!

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While Markphoto3’s specialty is spheres, he also does other things with his rocks – such as this set of bookends made from a Richardson’s Ranch thunderegg.

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Member:  Hotrocks

I spend  more time talking to, and visiting and hunting with, Hotrocks than any other member of RHS1.  She’s my niece.  She was accidentally addicted to rock hunting one thanksgiving when I was at her mom’s house and was going hunting She was  interested in doing that in preference to the usual family thing that year so I invited her to a crystal hunt and she’s been off and running, hunting, cabbing, etc. ever since.  Not too long ago she and her sweetie started up a side business in custom leather craft and the rocks they cab now adorn leather items such as bracelets, journals, purses and so on.  Below are some pics of some of their latest creations with cabs from some of their Nevada finds:

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Member: HeySal – um, that’s me.

While I did get out hunting this year, life was throwing me some curves and I didn’t get the crafting done that I wanted to.  I did manage to make one wire tree as a gift for my niece. I had a pic of it posted somewhere, but it wasn’t that great a pic and  Jess just sent me a decent shot of it so you can actually see what the tree looks like.  The base is black agate from Washington, the rock the tree sits on is blue opal I found at our 2014 meet-up at Succor Creek in Oregon, and the pink “buds” are pink garnets I found in Idaho, so the tree is about as all over the place as I tend to be myself sometimes.

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So – as you see, throughout 2015, RHS1 members were pretty busy rockhounds no matter what life,work, and weather were throwing at them.  We don’t expect to be slowing down any in 2016, so come on in and join us.  The more the merrier.

Life’s short – Rock hard.