2017 Colorado Field Trip

Plans are being made for the 2017 Colorado Field Trip.  Dates for the 2017 trip are August 4 – 13, 2017.  Linda Statum (Jim Senseman’s next door neighbor) and Gerald Pennington are working on the details of the trip.

The first weekend of the trip is the Creede Rock & Mineral Show, August 4, 5 & 6, 2017
10 am – 5 pm.  FREE ADMISSION   Gems, mineral specimens, fossils, geodes, meteorites and rocks from the Creede area and around the world fill two caverns of the Underground Mining Museum and Community Center.  Over 1500 rock enthusiasts are expected to once again “circle the wagons” at the Creede Underground Mining Museum and Community Center. More than 35 dealers will be showing mineral specimens, fossils, jewelry, gold nuggets, beads, tools and artifacts. Educational displays and evening lectures fill the weekend with geological bliss!

During the week there are 14 locations to hunt for quartz crystals, jasper, geodes, amethyst, lace agate, all manner of rocks tumbled and dropped by a glacier when it melted, almandine garnets, copper minerals.  For those who watch THE PROSPECTORS on The Weather Channel, Joe Dorris said he would take the Dallas Gem & Mineral Society to his Smokey Hawk Claim on Monday, August 7, 2017.  This is an optional trip with a fee.  Awaiting confirmation from his daughter who schedules trips to their mining sites.

The last weekend of the trip is the largest outdoor gem and mineral show in Colorado, Buena Vista Contin-Tail Show, Aug.  10 – 13, 2017. 

Most stay the whole event packed week. Some are only able to stay a few days. Either way, in Colorado the temperatures generally top out in the 70’s when back in Dallas the temperatures are over 100 degrees!


Places to stay in South Fork, Colorado:
Allington Inn (800) 285-6590 www.allingtoninn.com/southfork
Arborhouse Inn (719) 873-5012 www.arborhouseinnco.com
Aspen Ridge Cabins (719) 850-8829 www.aspenridgecabins.com
Chinook Lodge & Smoke House (719) 873-1707 www.chinooklodge.net
Foothills Lodge & Cabin (719) 873-5969 www.foothillslodgeandcabins.com
Grandview Cabins & RV Resort (719) 873-5541 www.grandview.com
Lazy Bear Cabins (719) 873-1443 www.lazybearcabins.com
Rainbow Lodge (719) 873-5571 www.rainbowlodgesouthfork.com
South Fork RV & Cabins (719) 873-5303 www.southforklodgeandrv.com
Spruce Lodge (719) 873-5605 www.sprucelodges.com
Ute Bluff Lodge (719) 873-5595 www.uteblufflodge.com
Annette gave our Colorado Trip participants a special rate of $64 for any of the 3 types of rooms at Ute Bluff Lodge.  She required 6 rooms to be rented by our group to offer this discount, so be sure to tell her you are with the Dallas Gem & Mineral Society Field Trip!
http://www.coloradodirectory.com/ Great site to locate cheap cabin rentals.


Last Chance Mine
498 US Forest Svc Rd 504
Creede, CO   81130
Interesting place where Jack is trying to re-open the old Last Chance Mine. He brings in the rocks that are for sale, but he puts on a good show and tell.

The Roc Doc
17897 US Hwy. 285
Nathrop, Colorado 81236
(between Buena Vista & Salida)
(5 miles south of Nathrop)
(719) 539-2019
These people know their stuff! They know all the local places to hunt for rocks and they have equipment to buy and great specimens to purchase.







The Rock Collector’s Tool Kit
By Ray Hill, 2010-05-18
The question often arises, “what kind of tools will I need to go rock collecting“. Here I want to list some of the basic tools you will need when going on rock collecting trips. Basically, the kind of tools and materials you will need depends on where you go collecting and what you are looking for. Different collecting trips require different tools and materials.
1. ROCK PICK: Probably the most widely used tool for rock collectors is the rock pick; often called a geologist pick. This hammer/pick is especially designed for use in the field by geologist and rock collectors. It has a sharp point on one end and a square hammer head on the other. The sharp point is used for digging and prying. The flat hammer end is used for breaking rocks. The rock picks are usually only found at specialty shops like rock shops or on-line. Generally you will not find these at the hardware type stores.
2. CRACK HAMMER: This is a short-handled, heavy, hammer used for breaking rocks. They come in different weights, normally 2 pound and 3 pound. You should be able to get these at most any hardware store.
3. CHISELS: At some collecting locations you may need a cold chisel. I have three different sizes. One with a half-inch blade, one three-quarter-inch blade, and a one-inch blade. Try to find the type chisels that have hardened tool steel. Also, get the type that has the large plastic grip at the top with a wide flange. This will prevent you from banging your hand up with your hammer.
4. SLEDGE HAMMER: Obviously this tool is used for doing the heavy work like breaking chunks off a boulder or breaking up large stones.
5. MINER’S PICK: This is used for doing heavy digging. It really comes in handy on some field trips where you need to dig down a ways or to dig around larger stones.
6. SHOVELS: If you are a serious rock collector, you will want to get yourself three different shovels. One is the small folding-type shovels that you can pick up at a military surplus store. In the military these are call “trenching tools”. Second, a long handle rounded point shovel. Three, a long slender blade shovel, also called a spade shovel. You will find use for all three of these tools.
7. ROCK COLLECTING BAG: This is mostly what I use when out in the field collecting. It is a heavy duty canvas bag with a long shoulder strap.
8. PLASTIC BUCKET: Nearly all rock collectors use a five-gallon bucket for field collecting. The problem here is that once full of rocks they are pretty heavy.
9. CARDBOARD FLATS: These are very useful when out fossil collecting. Wrap your fossil specimens in newspaper and place them in these cardboard flats. You can pick up all you want of these at nearly any convenience store or grocery store. They receive canned drinks in these. The stores just throw them out. I use these when out fossil collecting. Often the fossil specimens are fragile. Wrap your specimens in old newspapers and stand them on edge, back to back, in your cardboard flats.
10. OLD NEWSPAPERS: Used in wrapping the really nice specimens you find. This prevents your nice specimens from being damaged during transport back home.
11. HAND TRUCK: On some collecting trips where you are required to walk a ways from where you park, you might want to take along a warehouse type hand truck. You can place one or two five-gallon buckets on the flat platform of the hand truck and strap them to the back with a couple of ropes or rubber straps. This way you can carry quite a load back to where you parked.
12. SIFTING SCREENS: Sifting screens come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes, and, obviously, you won’t need sifting screens on every collecting trip. However, there are times when you will want one of these with you. I recently went fossil collecting at an old abandoned kaolin quarry in central Georgia. There were huge piles of a gray marine sediment in the quarry. Using a sifting screen made short work of looking for marine fossils like shark teeth, gastropods, fish vertebra, sting-ray mouth plates and such. There are many collecting locations where you will need a good sifting screen.
13. OTHER ITEMS YOU’LL NEED: Other items you should carry on any rock collecting trip is; Plenty of liquids to drink. A first-aid kit. Rugged-type foot wear like lace-up boots. (This will prevent a twisted ankle.) Snacks to eat. Sun Screen. Bug repellent. Any medicines you are taking. A cell phone. Notebook for making notes. Write down the date, where you went, the weather conditions, directions, name of material collected, and such about your trip.
Here’s wishing you safe, fun, and prosperous rock collecting!!

Reading List for Columbine Gem and Mineral Society
from January 8, 2009
·         Mining the Hard Rock, John Marshall, 1996, Simpler Way Book Co.
·         Earth Treasures, The Southwest Quadrant, Vol. 4A & 4B, Allan W. Eckert
·         Colorado Rockhounding, Stephen Voynick
·         Minerals & Man, Cornelius S. Hurlbut Jr., Random House, 1970
·         Smithsonian Rock & Gem, Ronald Bonewitz
·         Messages in Stone; Colorado’s Colorful Geology
·         Discovery – Rocks and Mineral, Discovery Books, Random House
·         The Complete Mineral Encyclopedia
·         Ancient Forests, Frank Daniels and Richard Dayvault
·         A Guidebook to Mining in America, John Park, Volume 1; West