Rolf Luetcke on Fossils

Hi Tom,

Besides being an “old fossil” , my fossil hunting actually goes back to when I was a kid in Germany. My dads’ family house was near a small town and they had a nice piece of land with the old family house on it. The whole area around the house was crushed rock that was brought in to make an area that didn’t get muddy during rains. In among the pieces of rock there were crinoid fossils. I would sit for hours looking in the gravel for pieces with the rounded fossils in them. I had no idea what they were but I remember looking for them.

Never got into fossils in a big way either but knew a bit about them from my college days.

Didn’t get back to fossils until I moved where we are now. I was taking the dogs on morning walks and when I walked, I rarely slowed down, I have always had a fast pace when I am out and hiking. But, having to pee does make one stop and on one hike I stopped to pee and then always looked around and to my amazement, found a bone in a piece of rock just about a mile West of our house. If I had just found the bone I may not have noticed much but thought it was something a coyote had lost but in this case, the bone was par of the rock of the area, a white caliche like material. That got me looking and before long I saw little bone fragments all over the place.

Home again I researched this and got in touch with the University in Tucson. One of the guys there sent me a paper he had written on the fossil history of the San Pedro River Valley. It seems this area was a study area for major Universities from a few places back in the 1930’s and 40’s. They had found this area rich in mammal fossils from recent times to about 5 million years. I was hooked and started looking more and more. Found a bunch of things and was able to identify quite a few species in what I had come across.

Found all sorts of things of the mammal fossils from the area, including Camel, Mastadon, Rhino, Horse and many more. Fun stuff and I have a nice display in the shop/museum of the finds.

There are a number of much more ancient fossils also in the area and those stones I sent photos of are examples.

Lots of shell fossils in the area limestones too. One spot between Tombstone and Bisbee has wonderful layers and each one a different kind of shell life in it.

Never did get into fossils as I did minerals but it was fun to learn some of the history of the area.

One that was both mineral, fossil and lapidary material is Turitella, a fossil material from the West. I got some nice big pieces of it and did a few into jewelry, quite hard stuff. You may look into getting some for your cutting.

Here is a photo of the Turitella I did a cabachon of, neat stuff.

This is fossil Auricaria cone from Argentina, this piece a friend gave me to cut. This material is somewhat protected now by the Argentine govt. it was mostly smuggled out before.

This one is Stromatolite, a fossil algae, and quite ancient. Got some of this to cut from the Illinois friend.

My knowledge of fossils is not that good but I have had fun with the material I have come across.

I am sure you will come across some also in hunting rock. Petrified wood, or pet wood as we call it, is a good example.

Take care

Rolf

This Might be My Last Post for A While

Since I finished what I could of my travel book series, I am now turning to other things. My back has to heal up better and I probably should spend more time indoors to help that along.

I’m now spending quite a bit of time contributing by better photos to Wikimedia, the photo repository for Wikimedia. I am placing all of these photos in the public domain, with no restrictions on their use or any need to credit me. I could explain why but that would take several more paragraphs to describe. You can go over to my writing site if you want to know more.

One has to register with Wikimedia first, upload and describe a photo according to their requirements, and then place a link to it at an appropriate Wikipedia page. I thought the dashboards and the interface the two groups used were too intimidating but it’s not that difficult once you go through it. Just takes time.

I saw there were no photos at Wikipedia on the Nopah Range in Inyo County. None taken while in that range at least, just two photos from the valley floor. I added a photo gallery of some of my pictures to this page:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nopah_Range

Update! Wikipedia does not want to be an image gallery. An editor kindly told me this and we are going to rework that page. Only a few photos should show at a Wikipedia entry, the rest can sit quietly at Wikipedia Commons to be used in other articles and to be searchable as a whole.

Back to my original post:

It took most of this morning to get my Nopah photos up but they are now permanently posted at Wikimedia Commons where they await somebody 12 years from now to do a report. Many photos I am going to post have been seen here but not organized, not full sized, and not with a copyright release.

Seeing no photos of a wild Red Rock Canyon desert tortoise, I added my four tortoise photos to this page:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Red_Rock_Canyon_National_Conservation_Area

Here’s what I did for the Darwin, California entry:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darwin,_California

Update (again) That entry above has been changed. The emphasis on Wikipedia is not to create image galleries. I am learning this as I go and I remain very positive about contributing to Wikipedia and Wikipedia Commons. Be prepared, however, to have an editor watching your work and correcting it. That’s only fair, every writer needs an editor.

Back to the original article:

I’d encourage you, too, to build up what’s called the inverted pyramid of knowledge. With Wikipedia and Wikimedia, everyone can.

I wish you good health until my next report.


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My New Mexico Chapter is Now Out

The Arizona and New Mexico chapters of my now halted book project is out. Places to go, things to do, stuff to pick off the ground. If anything is open these days, Still, plenty of open USFS and BLM managed ground to run around in.

The first two new chapters are at my SW Travel Page, which also has more abbreviated documents covering the entire Southwest.

I hope to get the Nevada Chapter out next.





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The Rockhound Roundup is Coming to Deming, New Mexico

The Deming Gem and Mineral Society is once again sponsoring the Rockhound Roundup in Deming, New Mexico from Thursday March 12th, 2020 to Sunday March 15th, 2020. It is the 55th year of the Roundup.

Rock, gems, and minerals will be sold by vendors from all over the Southwest. In addition, the club is putting on field trips and a metal detecting competition.

The event is at the S.W. New Mexico Fairgrounds at 4100 Raymond Reed Boulevard in Deming, New Mexico.

Here’s a link for more information:

http://www.thedgmsclub.com/rockhound-roundup/

Look for Richard Mueller at space #64. He operates Miners Gallery out of Alpine, California and will have a variety of excellent materials.

https://www.minersgallery.com/

There’s a camping and RV park outside of town that thoroughly encourages rockhounding on nearby ground. Listed below.

Here’s what I have so far on the Deming area from my upcoming book. I’ll double check everything before it is published, however, consider what follows as a work in progress.

Deming Gem and Mineral Society
4200 Raymond Reed Blvd.
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-2554

32°15.256′ N 107°42.925′ W

Well worth joining if visiting this great collecting area.

http://www.thedgmsclub.com

Rockhound State Park
9880 Stirrup Road SE
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-6182

32°12.458′ N 107°37.531′ W

“This is the only place in New Mexico and one of only two places in the U.S. where you can take something from a state park,” says Manager Robert Apodaca to the Albuquerque Journal. “The most prevalent thing that’s readily available for surface collecting is jasper.” Visitors to the park also find geodes and thunder eggs, perlite and quartz, Apodaca says.

Ask on arrival whether anything beyond surface collecting is permitted. The park has steep, cactus-studded hills. Watch where kids play. A great place to camp for a few days of hiking and rockhounding. Bring boots and a hemostat or needle nose pliers to pull out thorns. The visitor center has a good rock collection showing what might be found for those putting in the time.

Stop at the rock shop described below for possible park collecting advice. Please buy something from the owner if he helps you with directions.

Here are park maps:

http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/spd/documents/RHPARKMAPS.pdf
http://www.emnrd.state.nm.us/spd/rockhoundstatepark.html

A highly authoritative page on the geology of Rockhound State Park from New Mexico Tech, along with an explanation of all things geodes and thundereggs:

https://geoinfo.nmt.edu/tour/state/rockhound/home.html

The Basin Range Volcanics Geolapidary Museum
6235 Stirrup Road SE
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-4021

32°11.678′ N 107°38.768′ W

Just before the entrance to Rockhound State Park is this gem of a rock shop. Christopher is the proprietor here and an expert all things thundereggs and geodes. Although he doesn’t sell geodes from Rockhound State Park, he did contribute samples for the Visitor Center’s rock display. And he may have hints as to where to look in the Park. Take in a park map to make any directions easier to follow.

http://www.zianet.com/geodekid/index.html

Trina’s Rock Shop
1812 Columbus Rd.
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-0348

32°15.048′ N 107°45.112′ W

Recommended by Christopher of the Basin Range Volcanics Geolapidary Museum.

https://www.trinasrockshop.com/shop/
Black Hat Trading
2785 US-180
Deming, NM 88030
575-494-4693

32°17.705′ N 107°46.008′

Recommended by Christopher of the Basin Range Volcanics Geolapidary Museum.

https://www.facebook.com/BlackHatTrading/

Hidden Valley Ranch RV Resort
12100 Hidden Valley Rd NW
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-3071

32°25.850′ N 107°45.658’W

Seemingly recommended by every rockhound in New Mexico and beyond. Bring your RV, tent, or rent a cabin. 25 miles from Rockhound State Park. Lots of rocks in the area of this working cattle ranch. Rockhounding a recommended activity by the Ranch, in fact, there is an annual rock show hosted here each March.

http://www.hiddenvalleyrvranch.com

Deming Luna Mimbres Museum / Deming Museum
301 S Silver Ave.
Deming, NM 88030
575-546-2382

32°16.003′ N 107°45.396′ W

History museum with large sections devoted to local geology. Recommended to me by an avid geode fan. An archived article from their website certainly confirms this. The text follows.

“The Deming Luna Mimbres Museum proudly displays a world-class exhibit of Thundereggs, Geodes, and Nodules donated by Robert (Paul) Colburn of the Basin Range Volcanics Geolapidary Museum. Rockhounds from all over enjoy this collection. Mr. Colburn has dedicated his life to the study of these geologic formations and is responsible for scientific redefinition of previously held ‘truths’.

Thunderegg is a Native American name for what Geologists call lithophysae or spherulites. Geode simply means an earth shaped hollow rock, or more specifically, a hollow Nodule with a crystal lined cavity.

Nodules when opened may be simple or complex. While there is usually a “family resemblance” in Nodules and Geodes from a specific area, the best way to reveal the inner mystery is by opening the rock. You may become a Rockhound “wannabe” after seeing this incredible collection. You may have the sudden urge to become a detective unearthing (pun intended) the secrets of rock formation over centuries.

The specimens on display are the best from over 100 locations and were selected from tens of thousands of cuts made over 46 years of collecting. Each flawless specimen was chosen to typify the area where it was mined.

This collection provides a rare opportunity to view one-of-a-kind gifts of nature created over thousands of years. If your family or group includes a rock collector (rockhound), a future geology professor, or anyone who is marvels at the wonders that have been created in the millions of years of earth’s formation, this is a sure hit for your visit.

Source of Information and photography: The Formation of Thunder Eggs (Lithophysae) by Paul Colburn.”

https://www.lunacountyhistoricalsociety.com/highlights.html

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The Gold Cube Part Two

The Gold Cube Part Two

Part One here



Ran the Gold Cube out on my apartment balcony yesterday. I used a about two pounds of sand from an Arizona location I found while traveling to Quartzsite. I spotted 10X gold in my pan in the concentrate that developed but I may have pulled a rookie move. I may not have thoroughly cleaned my gold pan before running this test. Leaving that mystery aside, some comments are in order.

First, this test was totally unfair to the Gold Cube. The material I had was simply scooped off the top of the ground, four or five trowel fulls and not classified at the site. Raw material, not concentrate. Later, I classified most of it to fifty mesh since I knew it was extremely fine gold. I had seen small bits of gold while I looked it in harsh direct sunlight but, again, very fine. The question was whether the Gold Cube could recover those tiny microdots. While I can’t be sure from this raw material, there are many, many other reasons why I like the Gold Cube very much.

I love the simplicity of the machine. No spray bar to mess with, no valve to adjust, just turn on and go. Compare this to setting a river or creek sluice in which I always pour screened or classified material. (I use a Le Trap sluice and I never shovel into it directly. Or the Keene models when I had them.) With a sluice, you have to find the right spot to begin with, never easy, anchor the silly thing, get the angle right, make sure the flow through is correct, adjust, and then adjust some more. And then you have to get the sluice out of the river without losing any values when it’s time for a cleanup. Not easy when you are by yourself. Compare that to the Gold Cube.

No ideal place on the river to find, no flow to adjust, no angles to set, no need for constant fine tuning. No problem with recovery for cleanups. Just get it level and proceed. It ate up my fifty mesh sand almost as quickly as I could feed it but I am sure it takes longer for bigger gravel. Whatever.

I am probably going to bring home concentrate from the desert rather than setting it up on a river. This will be a different experience than true field use so I won’t guess at how that might go. I might use it at a campground if there is a creek or faucet nearby to get enough water. Again, another day. That’s my overall impression of the Cube. Now, some details.

A word on weight. With the setup seen below, I was using about 18 gallons of water. That’s about 150 pounds. Throw in the Gold Cube at around 35 pounds and then a five to ten pound battery and you are looking at around 200 pounds. I mention this because my 13 year old balcony can easily support this weight. If your balcony or situation is much older, you should make sure it is structurally sound.



The next photo shows me applying Jet Dry, something fairly common to matting material. A YouTuber advised to prep the Gold Cube’s fresh mats by brushing the liquid into the mat while at the time pressing hard to release any air in mats. The maker’s literature may contradict using chemicals. In any case, I kept brushing until no more air bubbles came out.

This is a seven dollar level from Home Depot that sticks very well to the frame.



A look at the first or top tray which collects the bigger gravel and most of the gold if you are lucky to have some.



Recommendation is to wash out each mat under pressure into a tub. Tried this with my camping shower head but it did not have enough force.



Took all of the trays to my garden plot at one of the community gardens in my apartment complex. I don’t do much gardening, only five plants, but I am assured a hose and a place to washout everything I bring home from the hills. Used water under force to clean out the trays, each of which has a mat.



This is the result. The Gold Cube is not a finishing machine, rather it is a super concentrator. To clean up this black sand you’d need a Blue Bowl, good luck with that, or some other means to collect all of your values. I prefer careful panning and then storing my placer gold for some time in the future. I never make money by panning or sluicing. I just collect. Now, back in the day, when I helped out with dredging, that was another story!



Gold appeared under my 10X loupe in the pan  but I couldn’t picture it with my scope. Anything glittering is incredibly difficult to photograph up close. The lights I need to photograph wash out the gold color, take away the lights and you can’t see the gold. Another project, another day.

Each tray looks similar so it may be easy to get confused when stacking them. In an extremely clever move, the maker has designed them so they only fit together when turned the right way. If your tray is not stacking properly then turn it around. It will then stack correctly. There’s just enough difference in the trays to prevent wrongly placing them. I kept trying to force one tray onto the top of another, needing only a quarter of an inch or so of stretching to make the tray fit. But this plastic does not stretch. Turning the tray around results in perfect placement. Correct stacking is crucial to making water flow through the machine. So engineered, you should be able to assemble the stack in the dark since they will only fit just so.

These two Gold Cube posts are just my first impressions of the machine. I do have a few pounds of paydirt from NorthernNevadaGold.com but I was planning on donating it to a rock club I belong to. Maybe I will break down and process it. Then again, I would much rather find my own sand and gravel and I do know a few spots I would like to investigate. Stay tuned.

Kevin Singel has a page on actually operating the Cube, both in the field and off. Great hints and tips:

https://findinggoldincolorado.com/using-a-gold-cube-in-colorado/

The company that makes the Gold Cube is on eBay at goldcubeusa. For all you haters and trolls, this post is a non-sponsored recommendation! I pay for all of my equipment. And I pay extra for my web hosting to make sure there are no ads on my site. My videos are first done with Vimeo, a service that I pay for to make sure there are no ads on them. When they get published to Google there is nothing I can do. But I certainly don’t make money from them nor do I have any account set up with Google to get money from them. Now, go back to your basements.

https://www.ebay.com/usr/goldcubeusa?

Kevin Singel has a page on actually operating the Cube, both in the field and off. Great hints and tips:

https://findinggoldincolorado.com/using-a-gold-cube-in-colorado/


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The Gold Cube Part One

The Gold Cube Part One

Part Two here –>

Just bought a Gold Cube 4-stack Deluxe for processing concentrates. It’s a well reviewed product and information and videos about it all over the net. I bought directly from the manufacturer through eBay.  Their eBay company name is goldcubeusa.

https://www.ebay.com/usr/goldcubeusa?

Kevin Singel has a page on actually operating the Cube, both in the field and off. Great hints and tips:

https://findinggoldincolorado.com/using-a-gold-cube-in-colorado/

Setup

There is little involved in putting together the four trays which are made of tough plastic. Something called LPDE which you have probably seen but not recognized by that name.



The stand was somewhat difficult to set up. The instructions have poor, dark photographs which I am sure will be revised. Now that I have it assembled, however, everything makes sense as to why it was designed that way.

The stand is made rigid by ten 1/4″ coarse thread thumbscrews.  Get extras at most large hardware stores as you will lose them over time. My thumbscrews needed a little filing to make them finger friendly from some stray metal slivers. No big whoop. The Gold Cube must be level so I bought an eight dollar level at the Home Depot that attaches with its strong magnet to the stand.

Wiring

Most people won’t have a problem with the machine itself but rather with connecting the bilge pump electrical wires to the supplied battery clips. I have dealt with this  problem many, many times when hooking up different batteries to different pumps.

In the two next photos, note the difference in size between a lead wire and the the battery clamp wire holder.  Small battery clamps are all like this. This wire clamp holder may naturally accommodate 10 or 12 gauge wire whereas the bilge wire is somewhere between 18 and 22.  Clamping now will not hold, this small diameter wire will always slip out. What to do?

Soldering isn’t the main choice here as soldering provides little mechanical strength to a connection. Its main purpose is to provide a solid electrical connection. It provides little resistance to tugging and pulling. You could fashion a strain loop for the leads but these would hang up on something in the field.

Soldering helps prevent corrosion on bare wire better than a strict mechanical connection. It may help prevent a short but it is far from a guarantee.

I’ve made hundreds of low voltage wire connections that were direct buried with no soldering. The preferred method was bringing two or more wires into a small, two part plastic canister filled with waterproof gel. The wires were first crimped together using the connector shown at the bottom of the page while slightly outside of the first half of the canister. After connecting, the second half of the canister was pressed home into the first half. Thus, you had a waterproof rated connection that was electrically and mechanically sound.  See the bottom of this page.  This discussion is an aside about permanent connections. But that is not what this post is about.

What we have here is a temporary connection. It uses a clamp and post system which cannot be made waterproof since it is temporary. A case surrounding the battery and its clamps is the only way to bring some protection against water. Back to the real subject of this post, fitting dissimilar wire sizes.




The solution is to insert the lead into a bullet splice connector, crush that against the lead, and then insert the bullet connector into the battery clamp wire holder.


The lead wire in the photo below has been crushed into the bullet splice connecter. Home Depot sells the brand made by GB or Gardner Bender. .156 diameter, 22-16 AWG. Ten to a packet and less than two dollars.

Now insert the lead into the clamp holder. Note the tabs which must be folded onto the bullet connector and then made good by clamping with a pliers. Make sure to have the clamp’s rubber cover ahead of the wire before clamping. Let me explain.

See that red handle cover? That’s there for easy gripping of the clamp. There’s another one for the other side. It’s been pulled back to facilitate all of this connecting. Make sure it is somewhere before the wire before clamping down, otherwise you can’t get it back over the handle. This applies, too, to any shrink wrap tubing which I will discuss later.

The photo below shows the tabs closed over the bullet connector, then clamped down. The connection is now mechanically and electrically sound.

To keep the plastic handle cover from slipping off, I have used several turns of electrical tape to go from the cover to the lead wire. This is very ugly and unprofessional.

Ideally, you would use electrical shrink wrap tubing to marry up handle cover to the wire below. I don’t have a heat gun, however, so this will have to do.

Remember, this electrical tape has nothing to do with any electrical connection. This is just securing plastic to plastic. Electrical tape should never be used by itself to make an electrical connection. Shrink tubing would look better and work better.

Beyond this discussion is a case enclosing the battery and its clamps when you are in wet weather. Waterproofing the wire connection of the clamp does little when the post itself is exposed to rain or water. Any exposed part of an electrical circuit may cause that circuit to short when exposed to water. The entire arrangement instead must be protected. If nothing else, throw a bag over everything if it starts to rain. Better yet, get a proper case. If you are working near corrosive sea water, well, you need to get familiar with marine applications.

Here’s an alternative if you want to buy 100 of these connectors at a time. This is an electrical crimp connector. About 1/3 of an inch long.



First, expose about 1″ of lead wire with a wire cutter to remove the wire’s outer jacketing. Next, pass that one inch through and double back one half inch on top of the crimp connector. Compress the heck out of the connector, with half of the wire still outside. Insert the crimp connector into the battery clamp connector and crush again by pressing the tabs against the connector. Don’t have the exposed wire on the tab side, place the wire underneath. This spot offers the best chance metal to metal contact.

The reason this approach works well is because the wire is hooked over and back on the crimp connector. No easy way to pull out since the wire is doubled back on itself. In theory, the bullet method could let a wire be pulled straight out. Yet I have not ever had that happened. Compression works. Anyway, many ways to skin the proverbial cat.

Updates to follow as I continue setting up the Gold Cube.

Part Two here –>

One last note on making waterproof connections. You need a properly designed and rated connector. You cannot simply make a pigtail splice, solder it and then place it in the ground or in the water. That is insane. Solder does not waterproof. I’ve dug up more soldered connections than I can count. Usually wrapped in electrical tape. Madness. Do you think the Bell System worked this way? Take a look at the image below. This is a quality low voltage connector. Higher voltages demand other kind of connectors. Anything marked direct burial will work in the face of water. Everything else fails. Oh, maybe not now, but it will fail. Don’t set up you and your equipment for failure.


Updates to follow as I continue setting up the Gold Cube.

Part Two here –>


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Day Three In Quartzsite, Arizona – 2020

NB: Short URL for this page: https://wp.me/p9Ykms-Mn

Friday at the QIA PowWow and Desert Gardens

Day Three of the QIA PowWow greeted everyone again with perfect weather. Cool mornings and then long sleeve shirt weather in the afternoon. Wind picking up later in the day but no more than a breeze.

Day Three at The QIA PowWow 2020 from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.

Although I was trying to keep focused through the day, my mind kept returning to a location I discovered halfway between Parker and Quartzsite while investigating railroad ballast. (external link) My gold prospecting spidey sense kept tingling. Yes, I may be talking to you. But I’d rather leave to sample some black sand. Gold fever is a true sickness. (internal link)

I was at the PowWow only long enough to exchange a piece of eudialyte that I had bought the day before  from Alexander BlagulaAll of the previous night my purchase had bothered me. I had settled for what I could afford, not the cab I truly wanted. Before heading to Quartzsite I stopped at Wells Fargo in Parker to get the extra money I needed. Alexander seemed happy to see me, as I think he knew what I wanted to do. With graciousness he took back my first stone and gave complete credit for the new cab. In the way he talked and acted, I got the feeling that he was glad I was buying his best material. This video is from the day before.

Alexander Balagula of Unique Russian Mineral from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.

Desert Gardens

I took a few videos of the crowd at the PowWow and then moved across I-10 to Desert Gardens. To make it there, I used the frontage road as I had always done. Before you get to Desert Gardens, however, you have to pass through the Tyson Wells venue area. That venue sells a variety of things, not just rocks. It was complete madness, just looking at the teeming crowds put me nearly into a panic attack. I couldn’t imagine anyone voluntarily entering that swarm yet hundreds, if not thousands, seemed happy to do so.

Once at Desert Gardens things calmed down. The aisles are wider than the PowWow, making it seem more relaxed. The food, though, expect for the hot dogs, was limited and disappointing. I think the food is prepared by vendors who pay to be there, rather than cooked by happy volunteers. I’d bring your own food as you will probably be wandering for several hours. The big rocks are here, especially of rough of all kinds. Every vendor was from somewhere different, each had their own story and their own experiences. Each was an expert on at least several of the rocks or minerals they were selling. They all have their favorites, although they are often hesitant to name them. A number of fluorescent mineral dealers were at Desert Gardens. I didn’t see any radioactive minerals.

The first folks I met were at P.V. Rocks. Gary Peavy owns this business and he hails from Peoria, Illinois. He does some regional shows but once a year he gets out to Quartzsite. Wide variety of materials with much from the Midwest. E-mail is pvsrocks@aol.com and his website is https://pvsrocks.com.

PV’s Rocks at Desert Gardens, Quartzsite, 2020 from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.


I was finally able to meet up with R.C. of Geological Specimen Supply (external link). He hand carried my latest order to me, rather than posting it as usual. Just what I needed, another box of rocks. He pointed out T-Cat in his van. R.C. always takes a cat collecting with him. He had been looking at PowWow for what I used to call peridot in vesicular basalt. I think he is saying it is actually peridotite xenolith in basalt. I think. I always have to read up on what R.C. says to me. It’s a great learning experience. He answered some of my pesky rock questions and seemed interested in the crazy looking railroad ballast I had seen near the La Paz County Fairground. Yes, rockhounds and geologists are interested in railroad ballast.

I also caught up with the Keadys of Rockchuck in Schurz, Nevada. (external link) I’ve written extensively on them before. Chelsea is continuing lapidary while awaiting the birth of her first child. I have their video on a previous page, but, what the heck, here it is again.

The Keadys of Rockchuck in Schurz, Nevada from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.

After many tries, I also managed to find Laura Fitzpatrick, otherwise known as #geologistonboard. She is an Instagram influencer, who has thousands of followers. She writes extensively and in depth on geology and travels the world with her husband hunting and investigating everything rock related. She recently toured the Himalayas, reporting on each step of the way through Instagram. It’s all about the Gram. She agreed to an impromptu interview inside her well kitted Geo Mobile, a specially outfitted four wheel Mercedes van. She turned out to be a real gold bug and marvelled over my gold in quartz jewelry, insisting on taking pictures of the pieces. I tried not to bore her with my prospecting stories but she followed every detail of my accounts. Through the internet she is helping thousands learn about geology and to give people accounts and pictures of places most of us will never see.

#geologistonboard

Geologist on Board in The Geo Mobile AKA Flint from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.


I also talked with David Bintliff of the Rock Broker. See the video below. My big regret was that I did not stay or ask that he light up these rocks. I tried to make it the next day but bridge traffic was terrible. If you meet David, he does have lamps on site and I am sure he will show you what is happening with these multi-mineral, multi-UV colored rocks.

David Bintliff of the Rock Broker. 605-593-6012.

David Bintliff of the Rock Broker at Desert Gardens in Quartzsite, Arizona from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.


It was a treat, too, to meet the folks at Jim’s Rough Rocks who have a banner proclaiming Ocean Breeze Jasper. Their Facebook page is here: https://www.facebook.com/JimsRoughRocks/Ocean

They are from Redmond, Oregon. Not the Redmond in Washington State, home to Microsoft, but Redmond, Oregon. I messed up on the video and misstated their business name. Apologies. Will try to fix.

Jim’s Rough Rocks at Desert Gardens in Quartzsite. 2020. from Thomas Farley on Vimeo.


A few more hours in Quartzsite tomorrow and then I head off Saturday afternoon for Kingman, Arizona. Stay tuned.

Pow Wow Show Promoters
Mike & Carolyn Zinno
928-927-6325
PowWow@QIAarizona.org

Quartzsite Improvement Association
235 E. Ironwood Avenue, Quartzsite, AZ 85346
http://qiaarizona.org


You can read more about Quartzsite at Rock&Gem’s website and Facebook page. (external link). I was covering the day to day at the PowWow for them this year and I have written extensively on all things Quartzsite in the past.

 

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Follow me on Instagram: tgfarley

Honest Miners

Too many mining videos and groups lie about gold. They make gold seem easy to find. They find it everywhere. And they find a lot. All done to promote whatever they are selling: memberships in a club, equipment, a fee dig, a book, a mine, a claim, whatever.

Gold scammers have been with us since man first discovered gold. And even the most honest miner today can lapse into exaggeration. In my time, the Buzzard and the Massey clan were true hucksters, as they produced a television show in the 1980s which we would now call an infomercial. The Buzzard was never skunked and gold was as close as joining his expensive association.

Gold isn’t easy to find. These two groups don’t oversell (too much) and both depict real conditions.

What a 15 minute video can’t show is the total number of hours, days, weeks, and months it may take prospecting to find paying ground. That experience and years around gold people and their claims and workings are helping these people along, don’t be discouraged if you are at the bottom of the learning curve.

Join a local prospecting club if you are a beginner. You’ll probably get to try everything these people are using. Oh, and work on your knee strength. Good luck.

Baby Girl Mining Company — Great Basin locale — dry

Their YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCHR-NfW7nhR_GsG0RlkdZQQ

A representative video:



Sonny Prospecting — temperate forest locales — water

Their YouTube Channel

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdy_WSUG0C3adKrkMQP9Z3Q

A representative video:



If you can, support these people by Liking and Subscribing. Thanks.

Still image below needed for link previews, a new fad that makes pages even slower to load . . .


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https://www.instagram.com/tgfarley/