Back to the Shaw Mine and Beyond

Back to the Shaw Mine and Beyond

Follow me on Instagram. Writing over there means I can cut and paste to produce a post here. No writing twice. My eyes are still bothered by big displays and i must limit my screen time.

The Baxter Mine, Inyo County

Personal website:

The Baxter Mine, Inyo County

My eyes are good enough to cut and paste links if I wear my sunglasses at the screen:


Excellent tour of the the Baxter Mine on YouTube. Comes complete with the requisite twangy banjo music that is on every prospecting or Old West adventure video..

Moving Out and Up!

A Quick Two Hours in The North Nopah

Last week I discovered some outbuildings to an old mine on the east side of this particular hill in the North Nopah WA. Today, I was trying to find some clues to the west side claims that make up the old Nopah Group. No luck today, the heat too great to stay out too long.

Update on Railroad Pass, Clark County, Nevada

My investigation of that area has somewhat stalled.

I was hoping that the fluorescent properties of alunite might guide me to that mineral on the hill. It is said to be extremely difficult to identify using physical or chemical means. Unfortunately, further research says its UV characteristics are uncertain.

The alunite examples I got from Minerals Unlimited are from  Marysvale  in Piute County, Utah. Mindat confirms that the mining district there indeed has alunite.

The host rock is richly pink, possibly from feldspar. The florescence the rocks show is confusing.

I read originally that alunite fluoresces orange under LW. Another website says it glows white under SW. Another authoritative site site says yellowish-white under both SW and LA. A hardcopy book I have says alunite is not normally a fluorescent mineral but when it does, it appears white to grayish.

The problem is that the specimens I receive glow softly green under SW and not at all under LW. Some of the rocks don’t light up at all. I have one rock from the hill that also lights up green under SW but it is much brighter than my reference samples and it has an afterglow. The ones from Utah do not.

Not all minerals are well researched for all the characteristics they may possess in all localities. For example, extremely few fluorescent mineral list mention that some benitoite glows red. But some small pieces do. UV may not be helpful after all but I have found a few other things lately in my self-quarantining.

I have Castor’s well respected Minerals of Nevada in my library. He says alunite is “abundant with pyrite at Railroad Pass.” Okay, as a gold prospector I certainly know what pyrite looks like. And two Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology Examination reports mention quartz and alunite veins. Another mention of quartz. While I have found only one piece! Something is wrong.

In one of those examination reports are clear directions to another site on the hill, in the opposite direction of the area I was looking at. Armed with this information, I think I am now better positioned to find some well mineralized rocks. Just wished my back and leg were getting better.

I am now in physical therapy but and not making any progress, indeed, I having set backs. Still, I will probably make it back to the hill soon. Gold fever trumps all illnesses. Even when you are only looking for colors.
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