Rockin the Rockies

Rockin the Rockies
Stowe Mtn

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Topaz Hunting in the Tarryalls

 I visited Joe Doris' Topaz claim on Saturday and then went to a small museum in the town of Florissant.  Florrisant CO is known for its petrified sequoia tree stumps and leaf and insect fossils, but that will be a blog for another day.  On Saturday we went to a Topaz claim which was formerly worked by Walt Rubeck and called Topaz Mtn Gem Mine. Walt let people dig and screen material on site and when he died Joe Doris got the claim.  Joe has occasional field trips to his claim and allows people to screen dirt on site.  Folks can buy bags of dirt from the placer claim and screen the "salted" material at home as well. Visits to Joe's claim are by appointment only. My wife and I spent the better part of a day screening and raking through dirt piles. We found a few topaz shards.  A couple screening dirt near us found 5 2cm shards and they looked to be "cutters" (enough material to form jewelry).  I have been to this site a few times and the pictures below show some of the material we found in past visits.

Here are some topaz fragments I have found in the past.  While most of the fragments are clear, some are bluish and others yellow....

At the museum in Florissant, they had a display of a large smoky and fluorite found nearby.  These were found in the Holy Moses pocket of the Godsend Claim.  I'm guessing the finder exclaimed "Holy Moses" when he opened up the pocket containing these crystals.


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