Rockin the Rockies

Rockin the Rockies
Stowe Mtn

Monday, November 28, 2016

Winter's Closing Down Digging For 2016

Looking North From Lake George Towards the Tarryalls
Rock Hounding season is coming to a close as the temperatures drop and frost begins to set into the ground. I’ve been able to prospect a little longer this year than other years due to a lack of snow in the mountains. We’ve had no measureable snow yet and it’s almost December which is fairly unusual. This day I decided to do a little prospecting and one of my favorite digging opportunities presented itself in the form of a large dead tree and old digs (depressions) around the tree’s base. There were 3 main roots emanating from the base of the tree, each root was about as thick as my thigh and totally rotten. I could see from the old digs that somebody had found amazonite here when the tree was probably healthy and they quit digging as they ran into the massive tree roots. Now that the tree was dead and mostly decayed I decided to dig where others couldn’t and tear out the now decayed roots of the dead tree.
Old pine with digs around it's base bears investigating

 I was soon rewarded with amazonite. I continued digging out each root finding the hidden host pegmatite and digging out the root along with some small well-colored amazonite. I didn’t find a pocket of amazonite but there were still over 30 small collectible crystals.
Lots of small amazonite crystals aroud the tree roots
I was going to take the entire tree along with its tap root out of the ground, but the wind started to pick up and my spot went from sunny to full shade so I decided to prospect elsewhere and come back another day to take out the dead tree. It didn’t take long to find more amazonite float associated with a fairly extensive pegmatite. After digging a few holes along the pegmatite I reasoned this area was most likely already dug as the crystals I found were mostly broken and the rocks below ground seemed disturbed. Normally undug pegmatite will be grouped together, this peg had country rock(granite) and pegmatite mixed together along with the broken crystals. I checked a few spots up the hill and came up empty. The temperature was beginning to drop as the sun dipped towards the horizon and I decided it was time for me to skedaddle.