Hey all, been super busy since the New Mexico trip this spring, and havent had a chance to update my website. Been doing a lot of scouting for druse quartz and barite at a few new locations with some of my local rockhounding friends. We also did some more scouting at the newer Mineral Point location east of Potosi, were last there in early May, just about the time the weather was starting to warm up to summer temps from spring temps. Seems like it takes longer to warm up from those chilly spring temps each year. Johnny Pettus, Pete Hahn, and Bob Steele were with me that day…we had checked out a new location for bladed barite attached to druse quartz that morning just south of Potosi, where one of the original mines was located, and where bladed barites like this were found….
However, despite an extensive search of the area, we did not locate very much pretty stuff there…it could be that information I had from a prior collector, that told me that the really good stuff there had to be dug up, was correct. There are so many leaves on the ground there, from a forest of oak trees in that area, that it makes it very difficult to find anything there. We found a few scrap pieces of druse and a few small pieces of barite too. We might go back later this fall when the temps fall again, to do a more extensive search.
From there tho, we drove to the newer Mineral Point location to do more scouting on the west side of the area, and found several smaller areas with beautiful blade barites and druse pieces….
….so there is def a lot of potential good material to be found and collected there still. To date, we have prob only scratched the surface of what is there and maybe searched only a tenth of the total acreage.
In the past couple of months, we followed up on information from a firefighter friend of mine about some areas in some other areas of Washington County, where we have found bladed barite as well as multiple colors of druse quartz. We were in some of these areas in the fall of 2022, but didn`t get a chance to return til this year in May, June, and July. Some of these areas are known to have deadly venomous snakes that can be quite aggressive toward people…going by accounts from friends who have hiked in these areas and friends who have rockhounded these areas during the summer months. Wild hogs have also been spotted in these areas and another downside of these areas, is a lack of cellphone signal, so if a person did run into trouble there, and needed help, they would not be able to call for help, hence another good reason not to go these areas alone.
One of the places my firefighter friend noticed last year during some fires, described by him as ” sparkle city “, we checked out during a few days mid July this year, and found some beautiful plates and pieces in vibrant reds, pinks, yellows, browns, and root beer colors….
I plan to return to one of the hazard areas later this fall, when temps cool way down and we don`t have to worry about the serious hazards, where I have found beautiful areas containing bladed barites and druse plates….
A couple of these areas are on private property, luckily I have been able to obtain permission to go there and collect there, and have permission to take groups there as well. Most private landowners do charge a fee these days to rockhounds and collectors, and require a waiver of liability form signed by each person as well…a small price to pay for beautiful, collectable material.