Wow what a weekend it turned out to be…great weather, much cooler…temps down in the upper 70`s and lows in the fifties, nice break from the high 90`s and humidity last week. I got an email from a mineral dealer friend that was going to be driving up to the Denver Show this weekend and wanted to stop by and see what I had that he might be able to purchase from me. He said he would be by on Saturday afternoon after stopping off in central south Missouri to see a good friend of mine who is also a mineral dealer of Viburnum Trend minerals. Knowing he wouldn`t arrive here til at least mid afternoon, I decided to drive down to the new secret spot and see if I could find some more dogtooth crystals. I always pray for a safe drive and also asked for less horseflies and a few dogtooth crystals as well this time…I believe in the power of prayer and let me just say that my prayers were heard and answered.
Missy and I woke up early and got on the road in the cool predawn darkness, arriving about 7:30 am to a cloudy but cool day. I had on a long sleeve shirt that felt pretty good til I started working along the north facing wall….
and within an hour, I had found a small pocket of poker chips and druse combos…the top three in this photo are the first ones I dug out of the initial pocket in the wall….
…and after pulling those three out, the pocket basically just closed off to me…so I began looking to the right and above and below…and finally to the left side a few feet, I struck paydirt once again…pulling some brown dogtooth poker chips out of some loose sandy matrix….
…so I began digging around in that area and soon located an opening, that continued to grow and expand til I had a pretty large opening in the wall. In the next photo you see the initial pocket above the bag and the new pocket to the left about seven feet, just to the left of my green mattox handle….
I was initially pulling out some brown dogtooth crystals, so I knocked out some of the rock above the opening and took out the sides abit more, and looked inside….
…and the first thought was HOLIE COW…another big pocket….and immediately thought back to the time my good buddy Ian Merkel was here visiting…I had found a pocket that day at the secret spot quarry, similar to this one, except that in that one, there was a huge pocket inside and above my head and everytime you jostled a rock inside, crystals would come falling down like a big slot machine…and after I had cleaned it out as much as I wanted, I turned it over to Ian…later looking back to find him with his head and shoulders in the pocket, digging it out even more…however, this pocket contained alot more than that one had and in even bigger form….little did I know at that point what lay ahead….I started reaching in and pulling out several singles right off the bat…
and then found out that there were some big clusters buried upside down in the mix like this one….a real sweet one….
…so I would carefully pull them out, a few of them with the tips already chipped off, likely from either the blast damage, or resulting from the fall from above to their current position upside down in the mix and broken off from impact. Once I had several pulled out and lined up on the ledges of the wall where I could place them, I would pick up the better ones and carry them to my truck tailgate. This would enable me to take a water bottle break as well…and once I had the tailgate lined with them, about an hour later, I stopped to take some photos of the clusters on the tailgate….I set my mini flashlight down by them to give an idea of size reference….
…and then I proceeded to carefully continue to pull them out of the pocket…eventually having to stop and expand the pocket a bit more in order to be able to reach in and bring them out without bumping the host rock in the process….
and when you look at the expansion photos above, you`ll notice a dark area at the top…that pile of rocks in front of it, consists of several medium sized clusters laying upside down with dogtooths all over the place on them…once I had carefully picked each one up and removed it from the pocket, after cleaning out all of the crystals from in front of the pile of upside down clusters first…then that dark space opened up into the back of the pocket, filled on the bottom floor with even more single crystals and small clusters….even more WOWs and HOLIE COWS coming from me by mouth and thoughts….I had planned to only be there a few hours, intending to get back in time to clean up and get a nap in before the mineral dealer friend arrived, so about an hour later, I had pulled all I could remove from the pocket, and took a water break, and then wrapped up what I had and filled five bags full of wrapped crystals, with all of those you saw on the tailgate, wrapped separately and placed in my floorboards of my truck. Here are the rest of the crystals I removed, after a good rinse at my house later in the day….
and some pretty druse pieces…..
…the next day, I decided to return and clean out the pocket if possible…when I had left Saturday afternoon, the opening pocket was fairly cleaned out but I suspected there was more in the very back, which was a pretty good reach for me…and there was a turn to the right that I could not reach as well. Once there, I decided to knock out some of the rock on the right side that impeded my reach and once I had that out, I was able to reach in pretty good…but I had to hold my flashlight in my left hand and still couldnt reach in with both hands, so I then widened the opening some more so that I could get my upper body inside and then more freely grab crystals and pull them to the area just inside the opening. I laid down a few empty bags to make things easier on me and then proceeded to empty that pocket out as much as I could…
…I worked it the same way I had the day before, pulling out severa and setting them on the ledges til I had the ledges full, then carrying the bigger ones to the truck tailgate and wrapping up the smaller ones and bagging them. here is what the tailgate looked like once I had it full again….
…and after three hours, I had it all cleaned out…after removing the rock on the right side, I was able to get inside and pull more clusters out that were buried in the ground floor rubble, while holding the flashlight to see by….and there was a pocket that opened up to the left from the pocket on the right side, so in all, there were actually three pockets within….I`ll leave you with some closeups of the finds yesterday….
…one of the best pockets I have found there….all in all a good weekend too. 🙂
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