In this issue…Feature Fact —- — Rockhound Recipes and Tips, column –Travel: — South Dakota- Feature Article, Crystal Skulls
FUN FACT OF THE MONTH.
Obsidian…Image credit- Jack Cole “Lapidary Rough”
Obsidian artifacts are now being used by scientists to tell them what ancient climates were like. Broken surfaces of obsidian hydrate, and once the age of the artifact is known the depth of this hydration can tell the scientist what the temperature of that time was.
This method of study has been tested and used in the Mexican Basin where obsidian has been used by ancient mesoamerican cultures for well over a thousand years. Many obsidian artifacts of varying ages have been acquired from this region making it a perfect location for the testing of this procedure. It can incidentally be noted that the Basin region has actually been cooling over the last thousand years.
Rock Hound Station 1
Global Rockhound Community
TREASURE HUNTING – OLD CHARTER SALVAGE
What’s going on now?
Old Charter is beginning excavation of the San Salvador Treasure after a series of major headaches! While waiting for the authorities to get with the program,they got bored and went and found 7 more sites in America, 2 which are reported as “substantial”. Seems they just can’t get enough of Bob Fitzgerald’s recovery equipment. Boys and their toys, eh?
Nice way to spend some serious down time, Don.
Well, as you can see, Don’s pretty well busy right now so we’re just going to have to rough it for awhile and wait for him to get a break to send us some details on these treasures.
OTHER TREASURE NEWS:
For those of you who have heard the rumor that Stan Grist is/was missing — It is not a fact.
I contacted him personally to find out if he is gone — or was missing for a time. Well, he did get back to me, which he would not have done were he presently missing. He also said he had never been missing, so he either has never been missing, or he was abducted by aliens and just doesn’t realize he was missing, Well, there you go – food for a new rumor if you are bored.
Hi again rockhounds of the world.
As always, your RHS1 staff have their heads together plotting new services for our members. We have a few surprises in the works, but it’s too soon to tell you about them just now. Stay tuned – we may be a bit slow, but we’re real good, hahaha.
I’m looking forward to meeting more members as the cooler weather brings rockhounding indoors for a season of talking about summer explorations and plotting next summer’s hunts.
RHS1 has been getting hit pretty hard by spammers, but we are keeping the situation controlled. Members are encouraged to contact us immediately if they receive spam in their personal message boxes or in emails generated from the site. Please either copy the complete pm or forward the email to me and it will be handled quickly.
It’s getting close to Holiday seasons so if anyone has any great rock or treasure hound ideas for Thanksgiving, Christmas, Hanuka, or whatever holiday you celebrate this time of year, pass them on to us and we will be glad to post your ideas (as long as they aren’t obscene or illegal, hahaha).
It looks like that’s all for now. If I remember what it was I am forgetting (just have that feeling), it will posted in the Gazette at a later date.
Rockin’ the Third Rock – and the Fourth
TRAVEL: South Dakota
Badlands South Dakota
If you are looking to go somewhere that you can have many different types of fun along with rockhounding, you might do yourself a favor and consider South Dakota’s Black Hills area on the West side of the state. If you aren’t sure where the Black Hills are, perhaps Mt. Rushmore will ring a bell. Now that’s a sight for anyone’s destination list, but considering the wealth of minerals and gem materials around those hills (yep, gold in them thar hills, too) it’s a double dipper of a treat.
The black hills are loaded with old mines, old mining towns, creeks and streams ripe for panning, and a whole slew of great gemstone material to go with them. These mining sites are prime areas for the avid treasure hunter with an urge to dig up history. For those who rather rockhound , an abundance of rose quartz, the state mineral, can be found scattered widely amongst the mining areas, along with silver, copper, gold spodumene, feldspars, and other enticing minerals.
Near the Wyoming border, limestone canyons produce some interesting and vivid agates including the brilliantly Tee pee agates, and to the East near Fairburn can be found the widely coveted Fairburn agates, the state gemstone. The Fairburn area boasts a wide variety of agates, jasper, and brightly colored petrified woods.
If you are not sure about what to look for or where in South Dakota, you might find a trip to the Museum of Geology in Rapid City enlightening, and even an old pro will find it worth the while of the visit. You might also want to check with the rock shops. If you can’t find a rock shop in Western South Dakota, you better be careful because you are driving with your eyes closed!
For the avid historian as well as the avid gambler, the town of Deadwood just can’t be passed up. This old mining town has much rich history to explore and learn about. After some luck in the field during the day, it is always fun to find some luck at one of the town’s many casinos, too.
The weather in South Dakota can be extremely hot in the summer and excruciatingly cold in the Winter. Snow cover can be expected during winter months making rockhounding and treasure hunting more than just a bit difficult and even dangerous, especially in mining areas. If you are a person who is not an extreme weather lover, mid to late spring or early fall would probably be the best time for your visit.
A rugged landscape
ROCKHOUND RECIPES & TIPS
This month the recipes are an eclectic mix of some of our Fall favorites. Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
Pumpkin Trail Mix
6-oz slivered almonds
1/2 C shelled pumpkin seeds
1/2 C shredded sweetened coconut
1/2 C dried cranberries
1/2 C milk chocolate chips
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
- On a foil lined baking sheet, combine almonds, pumpkin seeds, and coconut.
- Bake for 10 to 12 minutes or until coconut is golden brown.
- Remove from oven and let cool thoroughly.
- Combine toasted coconut mixture with dried cranberries and chocolate chips.
- Store in zip bag or plastic container.
- Yields 3 cups.
2 lg. boxes instant pudding mix, flavor of your choice
2 C instant dry milk
1 pkg. Oreos or Graham crackers, crushed
1 lg. zip bag
- Put the dry pudding power into a zip bag.
- Add 2 cups dry milk and mix well.
- Bleed the air out of the bag and zip it.
- Add 6 cups water to the pudding and milk.
- Close the bag and shake gently to mix pudding and milk.
- Crush cookies or crackers in package.
- Place crumbs in the bottom of cups.
- Pour pudding over the crumbs.
- Top the pudding with additional crumbs.
- Let sit for a few minutes and serve.
- 8 servings
Creamsicle Drink Mix
1 part orange-flavored instant drink mix
1 part powdered milk
2 parts instant vanilla pudding
Stir 2 tablespoons of Creamsicle drink mix into 1 cup of cold water.
Single sized bags of tortilla chips or Fritos
1 Lb. prepared taco meat (frozen)
Shredded cheddar cheese
- Heat up meat in a pan over camp stove or campfire.
- Crunch up the chips in each bag.
- Cut the bags open along one side.
- Campers can fill each bag with meat and toppings of choice.
Backwoods Chili Rice Skillet
1 Lb. ground beef or Turkey
4 C quick rice
3 C water
1 C chopped onion
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 pkg. chili seasoning mix
1 can tomatoes, undrained
1 can kidney beans, drained
1 T salt
1 C shredded Cheddar or Monterey jack cheese
- In a large skillet, brown the meat, drain.
- Add remaining ingredients except cheese.
- Stir and bring to a vigorous boil.
- Reduce heat, cover tightly and simmer about 5 minutes.
- Sprinkle with cheese.
- Serves 8
Chicken and Macaroni Dinner
4 boxed Macaroni and Cheese dinners
3 cans chicken chunks, undrained
1 C powdered milk
Salt, pepper and paprika to taste.
- In large pot, heat 2 quarts of water to rolling boil.
- Add macaroni to water and stir constantly until boil resumes.
- Reduce heat.
- Stir occasionally to keep from sticking.
- Cook 8-9 minutes until macaroni is tender.
- Drain liquid and set aside.
- Add chicken to pot, breaking up chunks with spoon.
- Cook for a minute or two to heat chicken.
- Remove pot from heat.
- Stir in powdered milk and cheese powder.
- Stir until cheese melts.
- If macaroni sauce is too thick, add a little of the reserved liquid.
- Pour into bowls.
- Season with salt, pepper and paprika to taste.
- Serves 6-8
Keep on Rocking in the Free World!
About the Author of Rocking Recipes
Eileen Trainor is a writer, webmaster, marketer and trainer. She and her husband travel in their RV and this is how Eileen became interested in camp cooking. Please visit her RVing websiteUSAer.com and advertising website. CoolAdz.com
She maintains three blogs: CoolAdzine.blogspot.com CoolAdzine.blogspot.com andUSAer.blogspot.com
“Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michaelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.” H. Jackson Brown, Jr”.
Rock Hound Station 1
Global Rockhound Community
THE STRANGE WORLD OF CRYSTALS – REALITY AND BEYOND
This month: Crystal Skulls
This is one group of artifacts which defy explanation on all planes, and although legends surrounding various skulls can be discounted according to contrary evidences, there are many mysteries which just continue to defy explanation after explanation for the origin, crafting, and even the purpose and powers of the skulls.
The crystal skulls, mostly credited with mesoamerican origin, are uniformly crafted from a single block of crystal. The authenticity of the skulls vary from almost perfect replicas of a real skull, including removable jaw bones, to more esoteric representations. One which deviates from perfection in replicating a real skull is circulating museums worldwide under the name of “ET”. This is the only skull to be fashioned from smoky quartz and has features more resembling an extraterrestrial being than an actual human. What is so special about the crafting of these artifacts is that no-one can figure out how they were made.
As stated, the skulls are created from single blocks of crystal. The lapidary method used, however, defies any of our present knowledge of lapidary science. While the age and origins of the skulls can be debated, the fact that these skulls should not exist at all can not be denied – even after studies by world leading experts, including Hewlett Packard. While two skulls did show markings when studied by an electron microscope indicating that it was possible that modern sanding equipment was used, many of the skulls do not have these markings. So while some are authenticated ancient artifacts and some are thought to be more current replicas, mysteries are not solved. There just plain is no way to make these skulls without the breaking the crystals other than one process by which the sanding of the skulls into their perfect luster would have taken between 150 and 300 years. If we can not do it with our present technology, this leaves the question of who did, and when did they do it, or even why they did it.
Many skull artifacts are associated with Mayan and Aztec cultures. While some have been found in Mayan ruins, it is generally believed that they are still more likely to be of Aztec origins as that culture contains skull imagery lacking in the Mayan culture and quartz crafting were common to the Aztecs but not the Mayans. The fact that a society possesses an artifact is not always proof that the society created it and from that note and in light of many of the extraordinary powers and attributes ascribed to the skulls, many theories of origins of the ancient skulls (as well as the newer ones) exist.
Some people feel that extraterrestrials gifted the skulls to humans, some think that they originated from Atlantis or Lemuria. One faction attributes their existence to a culture existing in the center of the Earth. Many of these theories are based on thought that the purpose of the skulls is to help mankind and reveal secret information which will help us to achieve peace and wellness on our planet. While some of the theories of the skull’s origins sound anything from questionable to outrageous, the fact is that it is hard to discount any theory for these skulls in view that the existence of the skulls themselves defies our known sciences.
That quartz crystal does have some interesting energy storage and projection abilities is a scientific fact. Whether these impossible skulls actually have been constructed by a means which gives strength and diversification to the known powers of quartz is a yet unanswered question. Whether we will eventually be able to unlock and use the energies for constructive purposes also remains a question yet to be answered. We now can only hope that the originators have ensured us a means by which to answer these questions.
Image credits for this edition: Wikipedia:
Rock Hound Station 1
Global Rockhound Community