Author Topic: Central CA day trip  (Read 55 times)

HeySal

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Central CA day trip
« on: June 09, 2018, 05:32:32 PM »
Feeling caged so took off about 100 miles South yesterday.   The wind was pretty bad on the road - in one spot I thought the dust in the air was smoke, but it was just dry dirt blowing.  There are political signs posted about water all over the I-5 corridor down there.  The traffic sucked but I finally got to where I wanted to hunt - down in the Mercie Hot Springs area. 

The roads are fenced - 100%. The BLM land is shut off to motor vehicles completely, so you have to be in condition to do some walking if you're going to do any hunting.  I did venture beyond those gates, but couldn't get far enough in to really make it worth my time.

So basically what I did was roadside hunting - severely literally.  Most of what was there was a brick red jasper. There's tons of it everywhere - the type with the white lines all over it (I believe it's quartz but haven't looked at it under a magnifying glass yet).   I picked up a few samples.  I could see huge boulders of it beyond the fences here and there - machine movable only size boulders.

I also picked up a few specimens of jaspagate, basically because I liked them.  I also picked up a chunk of California Nephrite (jade).  It's got an interesting color to it.  Greyish green, but at some angles almost has a bluish cast to it.  More grey than I'd like, but that's par for the nephrite out here.  Nothing like the striking apple green of WY - but it would make some decent cabs or carvings or such.

The one that surprised me was the rhodochrosite. It's low grade - but I couldn't believe it was there at all.  Makes me wonder if there's some nicer stuff back in the hills where I couldn't get to it. 

If I can get some pics of this stuff I'll post them.  Nothing I picked up was really what could be called spectacular, though.  It was still hella wonderful to be out picking up some rocks at any rate even if it was just roadside hunting.   
Sal

Life's Short.  Rock Hard.

Oxenkiller

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2018, 07:16:37 AM »
Cool you got out!  I haven't been able to get out in many weeks.  Every time the weekend rolls around, something comes up that keeps me here in town- some obligation or this and that or whatever.  And once I do get a free weekend, it seems like that happens to be the weekend where it rains non-stop.  So, still hoping to get out soon, been itching to in fact.

I remember from my days in California that there was an abundance of this dark red jasper-like material in the Bay Area- it was called "Franciscan Chert" and although it would polish, it tended to be rather mono-chromatic and not terribly interesting once you did polish it.  But, if you find a piece that is veined with quartz and not too brittle or fractured, then I suppose it might make nice lapidary material.

HeySal

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2018, 12:58:17 PM »
The red out here is all that brick red...and it does have the veins through it. One piece I got was more like brecated and it might make a real nice cab.  I still like the brighter reds (and oranges and yellows) that I get in NV, though.  Even though I didn't pick up a lot, it was awesome to get out.

 I have an appointment on Wednesday, and I think thursday I might end up in NV for a few days.  It's just too nice out to be able to just stay home now.  If my niece hadn't come over today, I would have gone out of my skull spending the sun time in the yard instead of out somewhere. 
Sal

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DSRTEGL

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2018, 07:19:13 PM »
Are you located in California now Sal????........Long time no chat but to be honest....I have not been doing much rockin for the last few years unless you count Agate Beach Agates


Forgot how to post images dammit

Derek



HeySal

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2018, 01:09:28 AM »
Hi Derek, good to hear from ya again.

Yes, I'm in California for now. I got sick and am at my Sister's recouping.  My rock hunting is pretty lightweight right now since I can't get too far on foot or carry too much - but I get crazy if I don't get out there sometimes.  The better the weather - the harder it gets to stay home. Typical rock addiction, I would think.

This trip was totally unplanned - and it was great to be out, but I really wish I'd gone elsewhere. If the BLM roads hadn't been closed down, it might have been worth the time. How do you know if somewhere is worth the time until you explore it, though? 

Next time I'm going to more familiar ground again so I can guarantee finding what I want - then I'll do another exploration trip out here closer to me.

Posting pics - they have to be online - then you post the link to the pic, highlight it with your cursor, and click the first button on the left in the middle row of buttons above. 

You can post in the photo gallery to put the pic online - but give me a pm or email when you post them so I know its there because I have to go approve it to make it live and sometimes don't check as often as I should.
Sal

Life's Short.  Rock Hard.

DSRTEGL

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2018, 06:07:55 AM »
Sal

Sorry to hear about the illness......and being stuck in California.....Not a lot of hot rockhounding in the Northern part of the state unless you cound beach agates or agates and jaspers in the northern rivers.

Derek

lizziebird

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2018, 06:41:29 AM »
Hey Sal,

Good to hear you got out, though certainly a bummer the place you went was blocked off.  Still, you found some rocks to pick up, and that's always something. 

California doesn't seem like such a bad place to be "stuck"... :)  Especially if you're anywhere near the coast - beautiful out there.

I hung out on a beach this weekend in central-coastal-NC and all I saw was sand (and water). 



HeySal

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2018, 01:17:06 PM »
Derek - NE CA near NV has some pretty good hunting spots. I've never been to a CA beach so know nothing of those.  Not sure I'll ever go to one.

Lizzie - The problem with CA is the massive populations with their 10 languages to sort through to communicate, screwy politics, scary high cost of living, and closed off land.  It feels like they only want you around if you like to be on the sidewalks or in the malls.  It's also getting very trashy.  People are throwing trash everywhere.  One place I used to take the dog walking about a decade ago looks (and smells) like a landfill now.  There's trash along the main roads like I've never seen, too.  Pretty disgusting all around now.  If they'd clean it up and open some land back up it wouldn't be so hard to take.....I wouldn't want to afford living here under regular living situations, though -- I can't believe how expensive it is. 

Sal

Life's Short.  Rock Hard.

lizziebird

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Re: Central CA day trip
« Reply #8 on: June 14, 2018, 05:04:22 AM »
Good points.  My mom lived in CA for a couple of years and when I went to visit, I couldn't get over the litter.  Ack!  Everywhere!  Mountains of it!  And the cost of living... eekgads!  And the people - just too many people, which leads to the traffic, I hate traffic.  But when we drove down the coast it really was beautiful.  :)