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Author Topic: Prospecting For Minerals  (Read 522 times)

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Offline Suave

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Prospecting For Minerals
« on: March 26, 2019, 07:20:31 PM »
Prospecting for minerals, particularly precious metals, was a major factor in the early settlement of British Columbia, with everything from gold, silver, lead and zinc, to copper and molybdenum. Recently, there has been a rapidly growing interest in prospecting for precious stones.

Opals


Prospector Bob Yorke-Hardy, formerly of Smithers, discovered the Klinker opal deposit in 1991 and has since developed the Okanagan property into the first working opal mine in Canada.

The Eagle Creek Provincial Park outside of Burns Lake is a great spot for finding opals. Located about 6.5 kilometres from Burns Lake, mineral collecting is permitted. It is about a 30 minute walk from the picnic area. Fire opals have been found here, but no precious opals.

One of the most exciting finds is Bruce Holden's North Lights claim. It sits in the alpine area north of Tahtsa Lake and Tweedsmuir Park, 90 kilometres south of Houston. Still in the explorative stages, the Northern Lights property has yielded a combination of common and precious opals, as well as many top-quality agates.

Jade


From Ogden Mountain near Germanson Landing to Cassiar, Northern B.C. has always been known for its jade deposits. Top-quality nephrite jade was pitched into waste piles by miners, where it was picked up by the Chinese and shipped back to China.

Cassiar jade is unusual in that it contains specks of uvarolite (chrome bearing) garnet, one of the rarest of gemstones, which gives the jade its brighter emerald-green color.

Emeralds


In the fall of 1998, Expatriate Resources Inc. discovered emeralds at the Goal Net Property in the Finlayson Lake District of southeast Yukon. In June of 2001, True North Gems acquired the Regal Ridge Emerald project from Expatriate Resources, and has produced numerous small, gem-quality emeralds with excellent color and clarity.

You never know what is waiting out there for today's prospector. British Columbia has a vast wealth of virgin mineral resources other than just gold and silver.

Keep On Diggin'_Suave

Offline mcbain

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #1 on: March 26, 2019, 07:40:56 PM »
Hi.Suave.Back inthe late 70s early80s I worked a lot of that country as a timber cruiser  all over the lakes districk.There was lots of mining activity going on and I used to find rock that had black crystals in it.Looked a lot like small Alaska black diamonds.Very hard crystal,I could not scratch with a file.Iknew some of the drillers and they did not know what it was.I was always curious about that stuff.Any Ideas.Luck Mcbain.
I started out with nothing Istill have most of it.

Offline Suave

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #2 on: March 26, 2019, 08:59:26 PM »
Hi.Suave.Back inthe late 70s early80s I worked a lot of that country as a timber cruiser  all over the lakes districk.There was lots of mining activity going on and I used to find rock that had black crystals in it.Looked a lot like small Alaska black diamonds.Very hard crystal,I could not scratch with a file.Iknew some of the drillers and they did not know what it was.I was always curious about that stuff.Any Ideas.Luck Mcbain.

Hi Mark, Hard to say for sure, but it could be tourmaline. Although, tourmaline is usually found in the Cranbrook-Kootenay area. One thing is for sure. B.C. has a very diverse expanse of rock formations and an immense potential for gemstone discoveries.

Keep On Diggin'_Suave

Offline sunshine

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #3 on: March 27, 2019, 01:02:05 PM »
Hi.Suave.Back inthe late 70s early80s I worked a lot of that country as a timber cruiser  all over the lakes districk.There was lots of mining activity going on and I used to find rock that had black crystals in it.Looked a lot like small Alaska black diamonds.Very hard crystal,I could not scratch with a file.Iknew some of the drillers and they did not know what it was.I was always curious about that stuff.Any Ideas.Luck Mcbain.

Any chance the black crystal was cubic?  If so, I am thinking garnet. 
See my YouTube channel for fun amateur video:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnz8kX6AZOeZbRt0F9XqVJA

Offline sunshine

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #4 on: March 27, 2019, 01:05:24 PM »
Good summary Suave.  There are lots of other interesting minerals to be found in BC and Alberta.  If you are running a sluice (or gold pan), also keep your eye open for diamond (especially in Alberta). 
See my YouTube channel for fun amateur video:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnz8kX6AZOeZbRt0F9XqVJA

Offline mcbain

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #5 on: March 27, 2019, 07:53:29 PM »
Hi.Sunshine.Do not think Garnet but could be wrong.It was 40 years ago.The cyrstals were about 1/8 square and u;pto 1/4 long,some even had a4 point head like they were cut.Some bigger some smaller.We found thes insome white rock.very white rock,Almost like a lime stone.The rock broke real easy but you could not tuch thoes crystals.Wish I had of kept some.Luck Mcbain.
I started out with nothing Istill have most of it.

Offline JOE S (INDY)

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #6 on: March 28, 2019, 01:18:35 AM »
Mark,

"Looked a lot like small Alaska black diamonds. "

The mineral usually refereed to tourists as "Alaskan Black Diamond" is high quality, faceted crystalline Hematite.  Of course that tourist jewelry is almost always made in other countries.

Joe
Wiser Mining Through Endless Personal Mistakes

Offline sunshine

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #7 on: March 28, 2019, 12:22:41 PM »
Here is a pic of some black garnet I collected, that was originally in white calcite (etched with muriatic acid).  The suggestion of hematite is also a good one. 

See my YouTube channel for fun amateur video:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCnz8kX6AZOeZbRt0F9XqVJA

Offline Lanny

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #8 on: March 28, 2019, 10:11:55 PM »
Great write-up Suave, very informative.

Thanks, and all the best,

Lanny

Offline buckshotbob

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Re: Prospecting For Minerals
« Reply #9 on: March 29, 2019, 04:28:05 AM »
SAUVE  love the post.

I started prospecting because of rumours of emeralds in Ontario. Ever since I have been chashing rocks.
Gold is the one thing I seek for others and as compulsive as I can be it has never turned me feverous.
Start a rumour about gem quality stones and I lose sleep.I spoke with true north gems owner years ago .
I started holding my wallet tighter after talking to the prospector he originally stole the claims from here in Ontario.

Rubbies, blue azurite, green beryl, multicoloured agates, blue topaz, amethyst, iolite, lavender penlandite, and a whole lot of other crystals can be found here in Ontario. Many I have chased few I have found.

My business card used to say ( the greatest finds are often the people looking for them)


On an emerald note. Beryllium is plant poisonious so when looking for it I often found float rocks with the moss dead on it. This allowed me to look at host pegmatites the moss would not grow on. It made things easier when roaming over the ground on for me.

 


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