Contact us today! Mineral Leases and Exploration Locations. There seems to be a fine line between rock collecting and rock hoarding. My destination was the historic and period restored 1907 Mizpah Hotel, whose management partners with the turquoise tour and dig. Register first at one of several local shops in Goldfield before heading to the claims. Post Oct 25, 2007 #1 2007-10-26T03:15. Virgin Valley is home to a lot of opals, the volcanic ash beds contain some of the most spectacular black opals in the world. Chalcedony is frequently found in the Arizona desert, and is often used to make beautiful wire wrap jewelry. The Southern Utah Rock Club, of which I am also a member, was also allowed a fee dig in the last few months. Rockhounding in the Southwest. Some looked like little creatures with eyes. Having found enough rough to keep me happy, I and several others walked down to where the excavator was used to chase the main vein. There is a fee for that; inquire. I’ve been in correspondence with top people at BLM management in Washington D.C. and I have their written assurances that such collecting is allowed. This is that misleading page: https://www.blm.gov/visit/marble-mountain-rock-collecting-area. Later, we would all have to figure out who got to keep it. Know, too, that many BLM pages which featured rockhounding areas are now gone, like the one for Burro Creek, Arizona. I get the feeling they think we are destructive. The state's diverse terrain is home to numerous varieties of rare rocks, gemstones, and fossils. So why aren’t they listed at their search site? Menu About; Best In The West in Pahrump, Nevada; Blog ; Contact; Home; Sat-Fi2 and Spot X. [Note. A lot of rockhounds back in 70s and 80s bought Arizona Turquoise when it was more available for cheap and now it is worth a fortune since it's running out. Utah Dump Digger is a fun little rock shop is located just a couple of miles off I-15 in American Fork, Utah. rhyoliteandkaolinshale.jpg: Country rock of rhyolite at the bottom with an overburden of kaolin shale at the top. And while the group had scattered, my prospecting experience taught me never to leave a productive area until it was exhausted. Our small convoy struggled to keep up with Dean’s truck. Every one of its 1.6 million acres is now totally closed to picking up a single rock. Almost canyon like, a high rock wall loomed over a deep hole that the excavator was burrowing into. When we met up the first morning we were looking across the sandy fields at a lovely brown mountain. He disagreed, saying that it depended on the skill of the rock cutter, that if done properly a good show could result even from these thin veins. We don’t tear up thousands of acres or make pits eight hundred feet deep. It was also fun to come home and find the newest edition of Rock and Gem Magazine waiting for us to discover the article “Mineral County Wanderings” by Bruce McKay. I Suggested Titles II Article III Access and Amenities IV Captions, A Turquoise Tale – A Field Trip to Dig at The Royal Royston Claim Near Tonopah, Nevada, A Turquoise Odyssey to Tonopah, Nevada – A Gold Prospector Comes to Love and Learn About the Gemstone, A Turquoise Adventure – A Field Trip to The Royston Mining District Near Tonopah, Nevada. I wrote about Tonopah area when I went on a fee/dig trip to the Royal Royston turquoise claim in November, 2015. Confused about directions? Rest in Peace. They have a silver ledge there that I want a better photograph of. 5 out of 5 stars (38) 38 reviews $ 19.99 FREE shipping Favorite Add to More colors Utah String Art, Utah Decor, State String Art, Utah Nail Art, Rustic Decor, custom sign, Utah love, Utah Gift, Utah Map, 11x13 witheyesunlocked. Stop any local on the street and ask where Bryan or Sharon are. The chalcedony is literally everywhere under foot. This week I’ll be traveling two those two towns, before heading further to Hawthorne, site of the largest ammunition depot in North America, and then further into the Sierra Nevada mountains. roystonturquoisejewelry.jpg: Navaho jewelry with Royston turquoise exhibiting rhyolite matrix. It’s necessary to go east to hook up with I-95 South, which takes you all the way to Tonopah. I therefore considered it a community rock and so, wistfully, I placed it next to my tool bucket. Utah is one of the world's only sources of red beryl. This is that misleading page: As Jim Boone points out, most BLM land that has not been shut down to collecting remains open to rockhounding or claiming. A long walk is often needed. What do you all think of this very nice piece of Clay Canyon Variscite? Although it is a turquoise mine, the greater amount of useable materials in the tailing pile were Variscite. Variscite is a cousin to turquoise and can often be found in the same mine. Besides, what price adventure? In Nevada, that border touches on tiny Goldfield and Tonopah. The city is built on top of countless abandoned tunnels and mine workings; a town alive on the remnants of the past. But I know Sharon Artlip’s chalcedony claims will be. The rough, by comparison, had a raw and natural look that I liked very much. No royalty or credit required.]. Dean said the overburden was a jumble of kaolin shale and rhyolite. The Stonewall Project is located in Nye County, Nevada, 15 miles south of the historic gold mining town of Goldfield where a number of large gold-silver deposits are currently under development and 37 miles southwest of the famous silver deposits of Tonopah which produced over 138 million ounces of silver and 1.5 million ounces of gold from 1900-1921. It felt special to walk around a working mine like this on such a beautiful fall day. The museum is in the Mackay School of Mines Building, a classical looking structure in Flemish-bond brick. Since perlite is both nontoxic and stable, these industrial applications are increasingly attractive in the development of biotechnologies. I will not settle that argument here, but the NBMG did write that turquoise colors could range to almost white and grey. Rockhounding in Utah Utah is an excellent destination for rock hounding. Willardite. We all acquired a sufficient amount of yard rock. This trip I followed the direction straight to the Root Beer Onyx (banded calcite) but digging out the rocks sure wore me out. After too short a stay, I hustled out of the visitor center to get to the Mizpah lobby by ten o’clock. It varies greatly in color from the highly prized shades of blue, green, and blue green to almost white or grey.”. “The Keck” as the staff sometimes call it, houses other fine collections. No charge for the store or museum. That rock was then pushed away from the excavator so we could look through it. Learn how to create your own. 16. The mine had been producing for some time judging by the depth of the pit. (775) 482-3030. Otteson encouraged all of us to join a rock or mineral society in our home towns, so we could work our turquoise and find out more about rocks and gems in general. No microwaves or mini-fridges in rooms. Handicap accessible with restrooms. The Mizpah Hotel is located on 100 North Main Street in Tonopah. Information on that is at the link above, also be sure to visit Bryan Smalley’s rock shop. Native American & Southwest Jewelry Wholesalers Manufacturers & Jobbers. One of our company found a round and dense green stone that looked quite gemmy. Free admission to the visitor center, its store, and the mineral displays. It’s even more strange because BLM has areas they’ve specially set aside for rockhounding, with no claims permitted in most of these designated areas. While I am normally a gold prospector, using my metal detector to find gold in quartz, I became more and more interested in turquoise as I researched it on the web. This particular mine in Kingman Arizona is one of the oldest most active mines in the world. It was the focus of my article in the January, 2016 issue of Rock&Gem. In the Mizpah a small group of us filled out paperwork, were issued a yellow nylon bag for our findings, and were introduced to the personable Dean Otteson. Rockhounding, Writing, Wandering. While perlite may lack its geological cousin’s vitreous luster and ornamental appeal, it has significant industrial potential.Perlite is used to create plasters, masonry, insulation, and even as a soil amendment. Perhaps, I, too, could start a Nevada collection. {"email":"Email address invalid","url":"Website address invalid","required":"Required field missing"}, Rockhounding Journals? Variscite is normally a more green color, rather than blue. turquoiseseaminrhyolite.jpg: Turquoise seam deposited in fractured rhyolite. After this stop I followed Otteson to his Royal Royston claim where we parked our vehicles. Turquoise’s formula is CuAl6(PO4)4(OH)8•5H2O. This public site is off of Highway 21 in Milford, Utah, and is owned by the Bureau of Land Management. Perhaps my turquoise odyssey was not ending but only beginning. It lies in Tertiary age volcanic rocks on the north side of the Stonewall Caldera in the Walker Lane Mineral Belt. We gathered in front of the Mizpah and were soon racing out of town. People are escorted in but can leave by themselves. There’s no agreed definition, save that Arizona and New Mexico are always included. They’ve closed the mine for good and used a D8 Cat and raked up the roads. Here’s a web page that shows you how to determine land BLM still considers public rockhounding areas. (775) 682-8766. Royston District turquoise was represented, including an example of the rare and controversial white turquoise, which many argue is not turquoise at all. Mostly rounded and polished stones, the collection includes a Blue Gem mine specimen that weighs 704 carats! The park is right in back of the hotel. At “The Bureau,” I bought a copy of Morrissey’s seminal work, Turquoise Deposits of Nevada, field checked and published by the NBMG in 1968. Where Cu is copper, Al is aluminum, PO4 is phosphate, OH is hydroxide, and H2O is, of course, water. Rockhounding on State Endowment Trust Land. Handicap accessible with restrooms. He subsequently claimed the property, calling it the Indian Blue mine. One big rock with a hint of blue caught his attention. No charge. Day Two – Rockhounding at Broken Arrow Mine The second day at the Mine was the main focus of the trip. If you have mobility issues, take a Lyft or an Uber or taxi from downtown Reno and get dropped off as close as you can to the Museum. But he never told anybody.” Kipling, Ali Abad, Northern Areas, Pakistan / Post 2, At 8,000 Feet on the Karakoram Highway (KKH), Northern Pakistan / Post 8, Detour off the Karakoram Highway (KKH), Northern Pakistan / Post Seven, Kaghan Valley, Northern Pakistan / Post 5, Karakoram Highway (KKH), Northern Pakistan — Traverse from Islamabad to the Chinese Border / Post 9, Karakoram Highway, Northern Pakistan / Post 6, Karimbad in the Hunza Valley, Gilgit-Baltistan Region of Pakistan / Post 3, North of The Babusar Pass Toward The Hunza, Northern Pakistan / Post 10, Raikot Bridge, Diamir, Northern Pakistan / Post 7, First Firmware Update Experience – Sat-Fi2, W.M. On another current BLM page, this is stated: “In most instances, public lands are open to rockhounding although no collecting is allowed in National Monuments. Mar 21, 2013 - This mine is famous for it's beautiful blue turquoise and exceptionally rare green varacite! It’s a great place to rockhound, including children. As the stone loses water into the atmosphere the tendency i… NB: Check my file on Places to Visit and Collect in The Southwest for the most current information: https://southwestrockhounding.com/sw-travel-list/. And yet a BLM permitted quarry or mine can destroy countless fossils or specimens of copper and turquoise that any rockhound would love to have. Check their website for additional items. Challenging trails lead to a myriad of mining features: hoist houses, a powder magazine, a tunnel, and viewing areas for many now closed silver and gold mines. He motioned to a bank of overburden only steps away. After a short stint on I-95 West, we headed northwest on Gabbs Pole Line Road at a furious speed. Rockhounds treasure even the smallest specimens. It all looked very blue. An upcoming trip to Las Vegas would take me through Tonopah. Dugway Geode Beds - Southeast of Salt Lake City, within the diverse mineral laden lands of central Utah, the Dugway Geode Beds are a popular stop for rockhounds from all over the world. greenturquoiserough.jpg: Low grade green turquoise in rhyolite at the Royal Royston claim. There's a nice selection of lapidary rough. The Bureau maintains this sales and record keeping outlet at the Great Basin Science Sample and Records Library building on Raggio Parkway in Reno. [Note: Adobe Stock image purchased by myself. I read there was an outstanding display of Nevada turquoise inside and I was not disappointed. You have to search for rockhounding by that name. Gypsum is common in the Sigurd, Utah area and is the home of United States Gypsum Company. A large display cabinet houses the Luella Margrave turquoise collection. Some see ugly road cuts, other see possible rock sites. Story and Photos by Mark Leatherman. If you don’t have access to that, I wrote some background on that article at my personal writing blog. It was nice to have time to catch-up with club members and get the truck good and dusty. Utah is known by some as the Rock Hounding Capital of the United States! And fuel up before Goldfield, gas is 27 miles away in Tonopah. The Broken Arrow Mine is in the Candelaria Mountains and has long been a prolific mining area for gold, silver, copper, iron, aluminum, tungsten, lead, borax, and Turquoise and Variscite. 16. I will learn how to GPS things.It’s just my husband and myself and we have just caught the rockhounding bug!!! We hunted variscite and turquoise on the dumps. The Great Basin Science Sample and Records Library building housing the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology sales office is located at 2175 Raggio Parkway in Reno. He was a good man. In 2019 the Ottesons have permitted fee digs on different claims for a few area rock clubs. I knew him for only a few minutes but I immediately considered him a friend. Destinations throughout Central Utah provide the most diverse and unique rock hounding sites in the state. Dean asked me how splitting the first rock had turned out. Handicap accessible with restrooms. Find a store closed? deanOttesonpointing: Royal Royston claim owner Dean Otteson pointing to a possible find in overburden. Near the western high-water mark of the Great Basin’s Sagebrush Sea sits Tonopah, Nevada, at 5,394 feet. Upon my return, however, the group had dispersed, each of them hunting on their own. Background on that trip is at this link. Those that brought pick, bar and shovel did the best. Useful Rockhound Information USGS Earthquake Map - … After five or six miles on this unpaved track through desert scrub we came to our first stop a few hundred yards from our final destination. cabinetsizerock.jpg: This washed three-pound cabinet size rhyolite rock shows a gem grade turquoise seam. The differences in color and shades within a color, reflect the different concentrations of each chemical. At about the same time or slightly later, Mr. Don McGuire of Ogden, Utah discovered compact nodular variscite in Cedar Valley, near old Camp Floyd (first name for Mercur mining district), Utah (Kunz, 1894). After some impulse buying: Geology of Nevada, a boxed NBMG rock and mineral collection, and a turquoise picture postcard, I fueled my truck and headed east on Highway 80 to Fernley, Nevada. Claw foot bathtubs common. Topaz Mountain Rockhounding Adventure. The perlite is a lovely gray color and has unique layers of material. A mineral lease allows … I thought about the Margrave turquoise collection I saw in Reno at the beginning of my trip. I said I had a hand sledge in my truck and that I would get it. Feb 14, 2015 - Utah Variscite and Turquoise Mine List, History and Information And, as always, check out Rock&Gem Magazine for the latest goings on in this wonderful hobby of rockhounding. The grouping also shows stones often mistaken for turquoise, such as howlite, chrysocolla, wardite, imperialite, and variscite. Water makes up a small percentage of a lot of opals, but in these unusually high cases of 10%+ it’s actually a huge detriment to using the stone in jewelry or for unprotected display. Although we were wandering in Esmeralda County, there are claims and mines all over the Nevada hillsides. Regrettably, in my haste to search, I forgot about these old workings and did not tour them before I left. Although the document exists as a .pdf file on-line, I purchased the work for its foldout map and, to a degree, as a souvenir. NBMG materials are not copyrighted, however, they do require a credit line.]. So, I did. The blast pile can be seen to the right of the primary blast area, affectionately called The Dome, at the Topaz Mountain Adventures claim. It’s the site of a potential gold mine with chalcedony just a mile off the main road. I went on a recent trip with the Southern Nevada Gem and Mineral Society to the Broken Arrow claim. Most of these locations are primarily sourced from a few key books: Gem Trails of California, Gem Trails of Nevada, Rockhounding California and Rockhounding Nevada. While Nevada’s own diatomaceous earth leads the ways as filtration agent, perlite is seeing more and more application as a filtration agent. Restaurant, bar, and lodging. A friend’s interest in turquoise jewelry had ignited in me a curiosity about the semi-precious gemstone. From shop RareRockShop. Sites like Rock Corral Recreation Area contain pockets of clear and smoky quartz crystals, obsidian, garnets, blue beryl and more. (775) 482-9274. He said the old tunnel was safe to go into and that a mine room opened to the sky. For those without access to saws, Otteson offered to cut smaller pieces back at the Mizpah. Since this article was published in January, 2016, Dean Otteson has passed away. Otteson told us to simply look for color. Create new map . When we were there a few years ago you could drive up to the mine, collect strange shaped specimens and drive out. But in going to Preserve status, the Federal government ended all mineral entry, including specimen collecting by rockhounds. Rain had fallen in previous days but our entourage, a low- slung sedan, a full-size pickup towing an ATV, and my pickup, managed to battle through the occasional wallow. We would caravan to the claim, he said, so the six of us went off to our three vehicles. Most of what we have, and have cut is pretty soft and a light blue/green color. It has been sold in America as Variscite, Utah Turquoise, Utahlite, and even sold as Turquoise without the copper. There may be open ground in the Royston Hills near Tonopah but it would take careful research to determine those locations. No admission charge. We decided to take a quick trip to explore some of the areas between Glenwood, Utah and Sigurd, Utah. Kennecot Turquoise is a bi-product of the Kennecot Copper Mine in Utah. Corner rooms have great windows, some of which may need help with opening. Unless expressly prohibited, wilderness areas, both USFS and BLM managed, are completely open to casual collecting. Variscite is often confused with Turquoise. A family affair, no less than 13 Ottesons have active claims in the Royston Mining District. Good luck! He seemed genuinely interested in sharing his life and his love of turquoise. One of Utah’s biggest exposed plutonic bodies, or masses of igneous rock, is located at Utah’s Mineral Mountains in Beaver County. Going? The Tonopah Historic Mining Park is located at 520 Mculloch Avenue in Tonopah, immediately behind the Mizpah Hotel. Registered Member. Thanks again! Not wanting to destroy something by blindly flailing away, I remembered Dean had said to hit the rock on the right. One of our group drove up it a short distance, but the side-hill road has been collapsed and there is no access by auto. Any rock hound should tour the museum’s displays of minerals, fossils, mining artifacts, and ores. See more ideas about turqouise, rock hounding, turquoise. Our group, the Southern Utah Rock Club, Inc., had been given 10 of the 20 slots for a pay dig at the mine tailings. Dean pointed out an abandoned mine that at one time supplied turquoise for Tiffany and Company. Rock Collecting or Rock Hoarding. They debated that for a while and then said it would be legal as long as I didn’t step on any other tracks while I was making one. These new pieces showed fracture lines and veins more clearly than the first rock but with much less turquoise. I hit the rock again and it cleaved open, exploding into a sky- blue color that matched any turquoise cabochon I had ever seen. Perhaps I will have more information on that before my book is published. I hadn’t read that the Royston Mining District produced nodules or nuggets, never-the-less, there it was. Speaking of which, I hope to visit that city’s mining park and museum once again. Vowing to come back soon, I next drove a few miles north to visit the publication sales and information office of the Nevada Bureau of Mines and Geology. We passed SolarReserve’s power plant, whose thousands of mirrors concentrated sunlight on a tower receiver that glowed like a torch. I have been able to get some wonderful Kennecot I read later in Pearl’s Turquoise that when “a rock cavity is only partially filled, the surface is often rounded.” The others in our group were also equally happy with their finds, mostly hand sample sized rocks showing green and blue. The Ottesons are Royston Mining District claim owners and tour operators. By. Turquoise’s formula is CuAl6(PO4)4(OH)8•5H2O. “Collecting may not be allowed in special management areas, such as wilderness and national historic sites or on mining claims.” That’s totally misleading. Rock collecting brings to mind the scientific collection of specimens. However, some of the Kennecot Turquoise from Utah was a great color, as with any mine. Nearly fifty activities listed by BLM and none of them rockhounding. That is Western Shoshone country. It has samples from around the world, including over 30 specimens from different Nevada mines and localities. 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