Tuesday, January 19, 2010

January field trip

by Kyle Meredith (Rolling Stones member, Field Trip Coordinator)

I want to thank Wade Cave for leading a successful (and LARGE) field trip to Round Mountain! He told me there were 36 people on the trip, and as best as he could tell, everyone found something, and some people found A LOT of somethings.

I guess there was a bit of a snafu in finding the turn-off from the highway, but with a little guidance from Lee, everyone got back on track and made it to the collecting site. I can relate to that—I have certainly led us astray on previous trips. You just have to accept those little adventures with good humor.

After lunch, Wade and some others decided to do the loop, looking for geodes, but without much success. It is a vast area, but many people have collected there over many years, and in most cases the easy pickings and impressive finds have been taken away.

That’s something we really need to consider when we do these trips. I’ve been to many sites where there is little evidence of the material we went to find. Part of our mission as a gem and mineral society is to share our interest with others, including the generations that come after us. It’s hard advice to follow—I know from personal experience as a collector—but we should limit ourselves in what we collect. It seems ridiculous to think that the opportunities at Round Mountain will ever disappear, but how many buckets does it take to strip an area, especially with as many people as we draw on our trips? Legally, we are each limited to 25 pounds per day (plus one piece) with a total limit of 250 pounds per year.

Additionally, according to information on the BLM website, “You may not collect any artifacts, ancient or historical, on public lands [including] ARROWHEADS OR FLAKES, pottery or potsherds, mats, rock art, old bottles or pieces of equipment or buildings.” This is something I hope EVERYONE will consider on all our future trips.

Welcome to the new members that joined, and I hope we see you at the meetings and other club functions! Remember, the Rolling Stones is more than just field trips.

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