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July 25, 2009 It was a sweltering hot day and because we didn't get started exploring this area until noon it was pouring down sun.
Every time a cloud would cover the sun the temperature seemed to drop 5 degrees and a cool breeze would spoil us until the cloud
passed and it was back into the sauna. On this day the sultry heat quickly became insignificant as we soon realized we were in a
very, very interesting spot. Good friend and rockhound Dave Hart discovered this location in Chatham County, NC. If it were not for
Dave's kind "Hart" I would not have some of the best quartz specimens in my collection today.
Quartz veins pervaded the area we were exploring. They crisscrossed, intersected, and ran parallel.
After an hour of surface collecting small crystals we began to search for exposed veins
of quartz with crystallization so that we could begin to dig.
It wasn't long till we settled on a spot to dig and quickly saw signs of crystallization sticking out of the thick red clay.
We found mostly single crystals and a few crystals that were in clusters. The clustered crystals seemed to be more rare.
You can see the distinct golden pocket clay mixed in with the red clay on this specimen.
Here is another single crystal with the red and yellow clay covering it.
This was a small cluster engulfed in the yellow clay.
Here is another beautiful cluster.
This was my best cluster before removing the clay.
In some areas of this vein the crystals were all bunched and packed together. Removing them quickly was not an option.
I had forgotten my plastic shovel for this trip so I had to proceed very slowly. Unfortunately, I dinged a few specimens
with my metal shovel, however, I had found enough specimens to make up for it.
Here is the point of a crystal exposed before extraction.
There were phantoms present in many of the crystals found at this spot. We'll definitely be back to look for more.
My friend and rockhound Joe narrates as he shows off his finds.
Here are some of the specimens after cleaning. There were some rarer phantoms with two layers.
The outer coating is chlorite giving it a green color and the inner layer is hematite (iron) giving it a reddish brown color.
Another multicolored double phantom.
Possibly the epitome of dorkdom but hopefully some people will be entertained
by watching me clean some of the crystals from this spot.