In this issue...Fun Fact…TREASURE…Odyssey-Marine…FEATURE ARTICLE…Gold Rush 2008… THOM’S COLUMN… Rockhound Recipes and Tips… TRAVEL…Lands of legend…Earthwatch…-3 year 1st Quarter earthquake report FEATURE ARTICLE… Meet the members… —RHS1 News.
FUN FACT OF THE MONTH…ZIRCONS
Of all gemstones, zircons mimic diamonds best. Some of the trace elements that cause the color diversity of the Zircon are actually radioactive. Radioactive stones are heat treated to stabilize them for use as gemstones. Most are heat treated regardless of their radioactivity. Blue, golden-brown, and clear stones result from heat treatment
GOING FOR THE GOLD
The 2008 Gold Rush is ON! With prices of metal soaring and global economists predicting collapse of our paper money system which is backed by …um…nothing, rockhounds and treasure hunters are gearing up and going into the field to hunt for the precious metal in numbers large enough to be considered a new gold rush. At a thousand bucks an ounce for gold, who can blame anyone for joining the rush? In economic collapse, it is the person with the gold, silver, and platinum who has the buying power.
While many have presumed that gold had just about been hunted out, those who never left the field can testify there is still one heck of a lot of glitter in “them thar hills”. Among the many of the mines that closed during the early decades of the 1900’s, tapped out was not a reason that most closed. As these mines have sat dormant for so many years, the gold within has continued to find its way into the streams below them. Gold spattered dry washes that were ignored because of the complications of waterless gold hunting are now seeing prospectors digging in. And of course – caches of gold buried long ago for many reasons are now being sought by metal detecting enthusiasts in larger numbers than ever before.
For those of you who feel left out because you think that you don’t live anywhere near gold, you will be surprised to know that gold is found in places that you might not expect. In actuality gold can be found almost anywhere. Large amounts of gold have been found in 22 states and smaller amounts in 10 others. While you might find yourself in the midst of a crowd in many places, you can always wander off to some spots which are lesser known in your search and reaps some pretty pleasing results. For the serious hunter, the search begins inside. Before going into an area for gold, you will want to do some research of government records. You will want to find not only where gold has been found in your local state, you will want to find out where current claims, restricted areas, and private property exist. Claim jumping is a dangerous option for fools and fines for hunting in restricted areas or private property are just not the way to reap any benefits for yourself. Keep it clean!
Your local government offices will have records of restricted areas, private property, and claims in you local area and can get or direct you to statewide records. These records can help you make decisions about where to start hunting. If you can find legal open areas to hunt downstream from early mining endeavors, these are good places to start hunting. While mines might have been closed down, it doesn’t mean that the gold just disappeared. Gold will continue to wash down stream in collect in placers. In areas that have not been strongly worked in years the caches available in placers can be quite impressive. Of course, it is always still possible to find that mother lode that was overlooked in the previous gold eras, but you will want to start by looking for placer gold in most areas.
In Arizona hunters use metal detectors to scan open areas. In places where there are a lot of mines and are known as major gold bearing areas, this method of hunting can pull up some pretty impressive nuggets. In other areas, you will want to start your field hunting with a gold pan. By panning you will find where the gold is settling in a stream. If you are only hunting for fun and as a hobby, you might never get beyond gold panning. Panning is pretty heavy work despite how easy it looks. If you intend on panning, be ready for some soar muscles. You will find more information about different pieces of equipment you will want for panning in our upcoming gold series in the Gazette.
Unlike your ancestors, however, modern equipment can make this task a lot easier – and quicker.
Once you have found a spot that is reaping good results you have some choices about what to do about it. You can continue to pan the area or you can get more serious about it. In a serious hunt, panning is the way to find the area where gold is concentrated. Once you find the gold you will want a piece of equipment that will let you work in larger quantities. At this point you will want to consider sluice boxes and dredges. Gold is heavier than anything else in the stream (except platinum) and will continue to work it’s way down to bedrock. Sometimes bedrock can be very deep under the stream and panning and digging to it can be a lengthy and exhausting ordeal. Even when you reach it, getting the gold out of crevices and cracks is pretty difficult without some sort of equipment to help out.
Before considering bringing equipment into an area, you will want to make sure you are in an area where equipment is allowed. Dredging is not legal on all land. This is because it can disrupt the flow of the stream and cause environmental damage. I have also seen areas where even sluice boxes are not allowed. If you do use a sluice box or dredge, it’s a good idea to refill any holes you create with them if possible. It is also work to do so, but keeping the environment intact will also help to keep dredging legal. Too much damage in any area can result in having the area closed off to dredging – and sometimes even panning!
The information you have received here is just an introductory view of gold prospecting. Our new informational series on gold will be starting on the Gazette this month. If you want to know more about gold prospecting, lost gold legends, laws, and tips, you will want to keep an eye on the Gazette.
Odyssey Marine Exploration:
Spain’s Claim To One Of Odyssey’s Shipwreck Cases Dismissed
Tampa, FL – April 3, 2008 – Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NasdaqCM: OMEX), the world leader in the field of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration, announced today that Spain’s claim in Admiralty case number 8:07-CV-00616 has been dismissed pursuant to a motion filed on behalf of the Government of Spain. The shipwreck in this case is believed to be a 20th century passenger liner reported to be carrying valuable cargo.
Following Odyssey’s May 2007 announcement of the recovery of 17 tons of silver and gold coins from the “Black Swan” site, Spain filed claims with the U.S. District Court’s Tampa Division in three of the Company’s pending admiralty arrests. Odyssey made it clear that the Company was unaware of evidence suggesting any potential Spanish interest in the site, yet Spain pursued its claim without providing any information as to the basis for that claim.
“We are very pleased that Spain has acknowledged that its claim to this particular shipwreck is unfounded, and we are now looking forward to moving ahead in resolving all issues expeditiously with the other two cases,” said Greg Stemm, Odyssey’s Chief Executive Officer.
“Technically, Spain’s dismissal of its claim in this case has no bearing on the other two arrests, but this shows that just because Spain files a claim against a particular wreck site does not mean it has a valid basis, or as in this case, any evidence whatsoever to support that claim,” commented Melinda MacConnel, General Counsel for Odyssey.
Odyssey’s Shipwreck! Pirates & Treasure Drops Anchor At The Detroit Science Center
Tampa, FL – March 25, 2008 – Odyssey Marine Exploration (NasdaqCM: OMEX), the world leader in the field of deep-ocean shipwreck exploration, has dropped anchor at the Detroit Science Center where it opened its SHIPWRECK! Pirates & Treasure exhibit on Saturday, March 22, 2008. After previous successful engagements in New Orleans and Tampa, Detroit represents the third destination of Odyssey’s multi-media traveling exhibit. The show is scheduled to run through September 1, 2008.
The interactive, multi-generational exhibit features hundreds of artifacts from several of Odyssey’s shipwreck recoveries, and allows children and adults to learn about the history of shipwrecks and pirates, and also experience the research, search, archaeological recovery and conservation involved in the quest for deep-sea knowledge and treasures.
“We are very happy to bring SHIPWRECK! Pirates & Treasure to Detroit for its first visit to the Midwest, and to partner with the Detroit Science Center which is a highly experienced producer of blockbuster exhibits. As our previous engagements have shown, the public’s interest in our work of deep-ocean exploration and in shipwreck artifacts is tremendous. With this new destination, we have reached yet another milestone in our vision to share our treasures and knowledge with the public through a wide variety of channels,” said Mark Gordon, President of Odyssey.
“The public response to this exhibition has been phenomenal,” said Todd Slisher, Detroit Science Center VP of Science Programs. “More than 1,000 Detroit Science Center members experienced it during a sneak peek last week and we’re looking forward to a successful showing here in Detroit.”
The exhibit displays authentic artifacts from many different shipwrecks, with a spotlight on treasures and artifacts of the SS Republic. In addition to having the opportunity to closely inspect shipwreck artifacts, exhibit visitors will also get to experience the various steps in shipwreck exploration. In a fascinating behind-the-scenes look, guests can use research and technology to locate shipwrecks, pilot a real robot submersible, test their dexterity using a manipulator arm to pick up coins one at a time and identify artifacts as they are located on the sea floor.
Tickets can be purchased online at the Detroit Science Center’s website at www.detroitsciencecenter.org
About Odyssey Marine Exploration
Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. (NasdaqCM: OMEX) is engaged in the exploration of deep-water shipwrecks and uses innovative methods and state-of-the-art technology to conduct extensive deep-ocean search and archaeological recovery operations around the world. Odyssey discovered the Civil War era shipwreck of the SS Republic in 2003 and recovered over 50,000 coins and 14,000 artifacts from the site nearly 1,700 feet deep. In May 2007, the Company announced the largest historic deep-ocean treasure recovery of over 500,000 silver and gold coins, weighing 17 tons, from a Colonial era site code-named “Black Swan.” Odyssey has several shipwreck projects in various stages of development around the world.
Odyssey offers various ways to share in the excitement of deep-ocean exploration by making shipwreck treasures and artifacts available to collectors, the general public and students through its webstore, exhibits, books, videos, merchandise, and educational programs. Odyssey’s “SHIPWRECK! Pirates & Treasure” exhibit is currently on display at the Museum of Science and Industry in Tampa, FL. For details on the Company’s activities and its commitment to the preservation of maritime heritage please visit www.shipwreck.net.
For additional information, please contact Natja Igney, Odyssey’s Manager of Corporate Communications, at 813-876-1776.
SS Republic is a registered trademark of Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc
Odyssey Marine Exploration believes the information set forth in this Press Release may include “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, Section 27A of the Securities Act of 1933 and Section 21E of the Securities Act of 1934. Certain factors that could cause results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements are set forth in “Risk Factors” in the Part I, Item 1A of the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2006, which has been filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.
Odyssey Marine Exploration P.O. Box 320057 Tampa, FL 33679-2057 www.shipwreck.net
RHS1 WELCOMES “FINE METALS AND MINERALS” TO THE RHS1 NETWORK. Fine Metals and Minerals belongs to member jhwatts (Jason Watts). He also has an RHS1 Network forum so please feel free to go there to chat with him about his site, services, gems…..or anything else you might want to discuss with him. If you haven’t checked out his site yet, you will want to take a look at some of his specimens. My favorite is right there on the home page – what a beauty, Jason. Here’s wishing you success with your shop.
You will also find Jason and the other RHS1 Network members in the Main Menu or in the RHS1 Network Forums.
GOLD ARTIFACT FIND PUSHES BACK DATES OF GOLD USE IN AMERICAS
Oldest gold artifact on the American continent
Archaeologists in Peru have found an artifact made of gold that has been dated back 4000 years. The artifact, presumed to be a necklace is around 600 – 800 years older than the previously oldest gold artifacts known to have existed on the American continent. Testing dates the necklace from between 2155 and 1936 B.C., while the previously oldest artifacts are dated to approximately 1500 B.C. and also were recovered from Peru.
Found in a burial pit near Peru’s Lake Titicaca, the artifact has excited Archaeologists who can learn much about the transition of a people from nomadic to stationary societies. It will also give insights into the status symbols of the culture.
ROCKHOUND RECIPES & TIPS
Minted cucumber salad.Well I’m about tired of Winter. Spring isn’t looking any better, on the days when you can tell it’s Spring anyways. We just finished up the third rainiest month of March on record here. We were only 1 1/4 inches below the record which was set in 1835. Well at least it has given me plenty of time to plan my gardens and when I do that I start thinking about salads. So if you haven’t figured it out yet, I got a salad recipe for you this month to kick off the warm weather that has to be coming.
Minted Cucumber Salad is a nice fresh salad that is great on a nice warm spring day. Instead of serving right away I sometimes like to make it a day in advance to let the flavors really meld together.
- 3 large cucumbers
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 cups plain yogurt
- 2 teaspoons rice wine vinegar
- 1/8 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon sugar
- 1/4 cup fresh mint — chopped
- 2 tablespoons fresh parsley — chopped
Peel, seed, and chop cucumbers. Sprinkle with salt and allow to drain for half an hour.
Line a sieve with a coffee filter. Pour yogurt in and allow to drain for half an hour. In a glass or pottery serving bowl, combine yogurt with remaining ingredients. Stir in cucumber. Cover and refrigerate if not served at once.
Thom Meyer is a retired professional chef who has a degree in Culinary Arts – Also an avid camper and most importantly a person who likes to eat. Lately he has been involved in marketing and building websites when not using WordPress for them, a process of which in some circles he is considered an authority. Among his many websites that he maintains are www.recipes-4-all.com and www.wp-revealed.com
“When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro”
Hunter S. Thompson
VACATIONING IN LANDS OF LEGENDS
Black Hills of Dakota.
We are now entering a new gold rush. While many of us will still enjoy our hunts for crystals and agates, many will add a bit of gold prospecting to their gem hunting trips. Others will find fun in searching for legendary treasures. While a lot of legends have no real historical evidence of truth, many do. Legendary finds are not few and more are being discovered all the time. While serious hunts for legendary treasures involves much research before the hunt, there is no reason not to combine a bit of legend hunting while you are in the field near legendary treasures. In this series, RHS1 will take a look at some great rockhound locations that happen to also be the center of legends of buried caches. This month we are going to the Northeast corner of Wyoming and Northwest corner of South Dakota to the Black Hills.
The Black Hills area is one place serious rockhounds just should not miss for a mixed bag of hunting possibilities. Whether you are a rockhound, prospector, or treasure hunter, these hills and surrounding areas have much to offer.
Treasure hunters will have inexhaustible opportunities to find the past in the Black Hills. Old mining areas and homesteads dot the hills. Artifacts from early settlers and Indians alike lay buried and waiting to be rediscovered. Local legends of small caches abound and it would be hard to find any village without it’s own legend of a local buried cache.
For those of you who just can’t have a complete vacation without Hunting the Legend, you will want to make a stop in Wyoming at the Devils Tower. If you are not familiar with the location by name, think back to the movie Close Encounters of The Third Kind. There you go – that’s the Devil’s Tower. The Tower rises 1267 feet above the Belle Forche River near the South Dakota border area of Northern Wyoming. The tower is a monolith of magma which erosion over time has exposed. It is also known as Bear Lodge, a name given by the local Indian tribes who consider the monolith sacred. People are attracted to the tower for numerous reasons but the thrill for the treasure hunter is the GOLD LEGEND of the tower.
The Devil’s Tower.
The legend, supposedly originating from Indians of the area, states that a group of braves out on a hunting expedition found a tunnel at the base of the monolith. This tunnel lead to an underground lake where large quantities of gold also rested. They hid the tunnel meaning to come back to it, but never returned. Is it still there? Is it actually at the base of the monolith or hidden amongst the hills which are at no loss for cave systems? Will you be the one to search?
While searching the legend, remember that this monolith, looming far above the surrounding lands served as a marker for the gold rush pioneers. It is probable that the hunter seeking the legend may find small caches of those who left no news of their caches behind to become legends today.
There are not too many experienced rockhounds that have not heard of the Black Hills tee-pee agates or the fairburn agates which lay in the badlands between the Northwestern region of Nebraska and the Wyoming/South Dakota border areas. While these are the most valuable of the agates in the area, they are not the only agates to be won here. Moss, prairie, bubble gum, water, black and other delightful agates are also scattered generously throughout the Buffalo Gap area and Wyoming/South Dakota border lands. Beryl, garnet, spodumene, puddingstone and other minerals are also waiting discovery in the canyons of these border lands.
Fossil hunters, with permits, can delight in many forms of vertebrae fossils in the region. For those without permits, the hunting is limited to find and report, but sometimes reimbursement or credit for the find will be given to the finder of good specimens.
Need I mention gold prospecting when I mention the Black Hills? Here is the home of the world’s largest gold mine, The Homestake. The streams and hills are loaded with metal as well as silver and copper. If you are a gold prospector and have not tested your hand at prospecting the Black Hills streams, now is the right time.
While you are in the area, don’t pass up a chance to see Mt Rushmore and the historic mining town of Deadwood (did I mention you can do some ghost hunting in the Black Hills, too? The Hills abound with villages containing rare treats for any kind of history buff and sight seer.
No matter what your hunting tastes are, the Black Hills is a summer vacation wonderland you just don’t want to pass up. Do make sure that you know what you are doing if you decide to explore caves and NEVER go into a man made tunnel of any sort. Gold tunnels are some of the world’s most dangerous places and many who enter don’t come out to tell the tale.
Make sure you take plenty of water on your trip. The climate is dry and HOT in the summer months. Snow and cold in the winter make hunting impossible during Northern winter months. If you are planning to prospect you also need to check the area you explore to make sure you are not on restricted land, private property, or someone else’s claim. While days can be hot in the summer, the evenings can get quite cool so take some heavier clothing with you, too.
Above all � enjoy your Hunt!
MEET THE MEMBERS…
As RHS1 nears the 400 member mark (and may have done so by the time you read this) I thought I would take time to take a look at our members. Who are they and where do they come from? While many have not given us a clue to their whereabouts when they set up their profile, others give some rather broad details – planet earth? Well thank goodness for that one – let the aliens hunt their own planets! Others list areas or cities. Be aware that those of us not from those areas may not know where you are talking about unless you list your state! If you want to be able to exchange news and tips from others in your area, it is much easier if you list your state or country! Here’s a rundown for you of those who did list their locations:
Alaska Alabama Arizona -9 California – 18 Colorado – 6 Connecticut Florida – 4 Georgia – 5 Hawaii Idaho – 6 Illinois – 3 Indiana – 5 Kansas – 4 Louisiana – 2 Maine Maryland Michigan – 5 Minnesota – 2 Mississippi Missouri -4 Montana – 5 Nevada – 5 New Hampshire New Mexico – 4 New York -5 North Carolina -4 Ohio -3 Oklahoma -4 Oregon – 27 Pennsylvania – 6 Rhode Island South Carolina Texas – 9 Utah Virginia -3 Washington -14 Wisconsin – 3 Virgin Islands Canada – 4 Afghanistan (via Oregon), Amsterdam, Argentina; Australia – 2 , France, Netherlands, Morocco, Solomon Islands, Africa,
Some of you have more rockhounds around you than you realize!
You may have also noticed while you browse the main menu or forums that we have some RHS1 network members. Network members are not much different than other rockhounds. They have chosen to put their forum or Website on RHS1 for many reasons. The first is that they will be easy for you to find. Many rockhounds are ..um…rockhounds and are not familiar with Internet Marketing techniques. They do know, however, that if no one can find your site there’s not much reason to have it in the first place. By having their site on RHS1, they do not need to be experts in search engine traffic, they do not need to worry that you can’t find them after all the effort to put a site together. Another reason to be in the Network is security. RHS1 staff member, Finhawke, is an expert in the field of security so our Network members don’t need to worry about their servers hijacking their traffic or site for their own purposes, or hackers playing with their good efforts. Lastly – if the member has no idea how to build a website, we can and will do that for them.
Forums are not only free for members who need one – they are also secure from spammers. Anyone foolish enough to actually register and then spam the forum finds the consequences are not pretty. For those who don’t have the know how or the time to continually monitor their forums, a forum on RHS1 can be linked to their own sites and they are secure. It’s the best free option on the net for rockhounds. Everyone knows how frustrating it is to go to a forum expecting chatter and all they see is adult and pharmacy ads. We put a stop to that so you can get to the real issues and chatter. We have some terrific rockhounds in our Network and encourage you to get to know these people and their sites. You will find them in the “RSH1 Network Forums” and in the main menu. If you are in need of a temporary forum, that can also be arranged for free. Private forums that allow only those who belong to the forum do cost a bit, but not much so if you need a private room – contact us.
If you are interested in becoming a Network member, just let us know and we will talk to you about your needs. RHS1 is here for community service and fun. For you who are lurking in the forums (yes, we know you are there), don’t be shy, come on in and talk with us. We are not half as dangerous as many of the life forms you meet up with on a hunt! You may also do yourself a favor if you go into your profile and tell us what state or country you live in. You never know who you will meet that can be fun to hunt with.
EARTHQUAKE WATCH YEAR 3
– FIRST QUARTER STATISTICS –
Last month I compiled the statistics for the first two years of our Earthquake Watch. For the first two years we have compiled our reports quarterly from the date we first began tabulations, which was March 1st. This year I am juggling the report to correspond to calendar years. Doing so will juggle the figures a bit but they will even out as time goes on and cause much less confusion. This report, accordingly, contains two months of figures from our last report.
Last December was an extremely active month and that month is not included in this year’s report. March this year has been relatively calm. Our statistics show a much different situation than we have seen the last two years at this point, with the exception of the magnitude 6 quakes. For all quake magnitudes other than 6, the occurrences have actually been less than average. This is not a surprise to me for this time of year after two years of following quakes. That the occurrence of magnitude 6 earthquakes just continues to rise is. I wish I had some words of wisdom to offer to explain the rise, but I don’t.
Below are our figures for the new calendar year quarterly reports. The quarter was relatively calm. Whether this is a new trend with the worst behind us is yet to be seen.
JANUARY 1 thru MARCH 1, 2008
- MAGNITUDE 8 AND OVER
There were none so far this year. Average is 1, if any. We are running on the good side of average for these quakes.
- MAGNITUDE 7
There were 3. The average is 17 per year. At this rate we would experience 70% fewer than average for the year
- MAGNITUDE 6
There were 46. Average is 134 per year. At this rate we would experience 37% more than average for the year
- MAGNITUDE 5
There were 271. Average is 1319 per year. At this rate we would experience 18% fewer than average for the year.There you have it. It’s a relatively calm year for quakes so far. With all the flooding and cold, it sure is nice to have a bit of a break. Let’s hope it continues.Until next time – make sure you are prepared for disasters in your own area.
Image and info credits for this edition:
Wikipedia: Odyssey Marine Exploration : Roger Weller Cochise College:
Rock Hound Station 1
Global Rockhound Community