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Old 05-11-2015, 01:04 PM   #43
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New Mexico Chalcedony Rosettes... Volcanic Origins

This area we will be going to. It is a 35,000,000 year old Yellowstone Park, but exploded and formed a Caldera. Another word for a big hole in the ground, but filled with Basalt and Rhyolite lavas. Yellowstone will blow some day, but there are no chalcedony to be found... only Obsidian at the present time.

These can be the diameter of a dime to the size of your palm. Giants in the world of Rosettes. They look like wax dropping onto a flat surface OR a sliced Potato Chip that is all curled up. Usually these are very tiny. Not these and my wife and I have discovered other volcanic areas with similar geology with... rosettes.

No PhD geology professors have figured out how or why these formed. They were like ... melted wax for an example... some under intense pressure, heat or both... and for some reason hardened, curled up and look very odd.

There is chalcedony, a little agate and a touch of common white opal. All are sensitive to HEAT from this... hydrothermal blown out hole in the ground.

To the furthest south of this big hole in the ground is a mining town... MOGOLLON which is East of Glenwood. This is where the mining towns are found. There is also an area near HILLSBORO and CHLORIDE mining ghost towns. The mines are located on the outside edges of this big, exploded hole... well now filled in with a lot of debris, but you get the idea. We will be walking around the hot hydrothermal venting of this mega volcano. It is from these cracks of steaming mineral rich fluids that cooled that we find the chalcedony, which is considered junk to a miner... but to us beautiful pieces of bizarre looking "potato chips" and "globs of wax drippings".

This is all I can say on this Thread. Look up CALDERA, New Mexico Chalcedony Rosettes on the internet. These are formed under unusual conditions and look like it. Even people who have never thought of looking on the ground for anything... will catch on to this. You find one beauty... you will be crawling around like some old fool. But a wise old fool.
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Old 05-11-2015, 01:12 PM   #44
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Final Update and Other worthy information

Post #35 said Magdalena, NM... substitute Quemado, NM.

"Now that you have had the Rockhound Lesson, the rest is just meeting up in Quemado. There IS cell phone service IN Magdalena and Quemado. There is NO service where we will be. No TV. No Phone.

July 13, 2015 leaving Quemado, NM at 2:30PM preferred."

This area is above 6,300 feet elevation and during sunny days the humidity in your trailer will indicate less than 5% humidity. You will not sweat. But you need to carry water while hunting. Nothing like some leg cramps in the middle of the night to remind you of not enough water and potassium from a banana or two in your system. You are not camels. We have our larger Heeler pack their own water sometimes.

We have hunted in a drizzle which is actually a welcomed event. This is a dry area. When raining it evaporates way too fast. At the same time it makes the chalcedony, which run from whitish, to grey white to having some violet or purple coloring on the edges, stand out agains the dark volcanic soil.

This IS National Forest. You can park with Solar in the open field, or camp in the shade of 50 foot pines. If we get more than myself, one trailer, we will figure out how to fit everyone into a good pattern for getting in and OUT. You have a thousand acres to camp. You will have to figure out if the road or two rutter can get you off the main road enough to pull off. You have to stay within a "hunter's camp pullout". Then there is plenty of room to set the trailer.

You will think you are so far in the woods, that you will never find your way out. Would Ray tell a fib? Not on this trip. I expect some newbies and some from the tent camping back packer crowd. This is a come and learn experience. IF this does not drive me completely nuts... 2016 will find another NEW kind of experience from well tested off the grid trailer sites.

If you have never... fished, climbed, rock hunted, wandered aimlessly, hiked into Wilderness... YOU will be among hard core out door campers... I hope. At least my wife, my two Blue Heelers and myself have been and done it all.

If you cry or scream with the sight of a brown/black bear, a UFO or a harmless five foot rattlesnake... come anyway.

We always have a "wood" walking stick. I call it a "whacker". If someone or some thing is bothering you... whack it. Good for flipping rocks over as well. You need not fear rattlesnakes, although we saw ONE IN EIGHT YEARS. It was over five feet long and the diameter of a big orange. It gave us no mind and went on its way. If we spot one while you are there... and want to see one this large, if we can drag you over to it... we will. Just do not hurt the poor thing with your "whacker stick". Or... I can drag it over to you. Either way works for me.
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Old 05-11-2015, 01:41 PM   #45
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Ray,

Great that you are doing this. When we were MUCH younger, I was stationed at Fort Bliss and we backpacked into the Gila Wilderness near Silver City several times. Lost the water pump pulley on my Firebird on a Sunday afternoon and limped into Silver City, or maybe it was Deming. Guy at a gas station had a friend that ran a junkyard. Would you believe a pulley off a 48 Pontiac fit a 68 Firebird? Lots of neat memories.

Unfortunately I think we are booked up solid in July, but I'm subscribed now and if things change I will get back with you to see if you still have room. While we backpacked years ago, now we are older and slower and have never boondocked the trailer so it would be great to do it with someone who has.

The Wyoming, 2016 sounds interesting too!

Thanks again,

Al
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:20 AM   #46
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Ray,

July does not work for me but June might. Same meet up location and plans?
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Old 05-12-2015, 07:23 AM   #47
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Will be sorry to miss you, Vince.

Travel safe,


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Old 05-12-2015, 08:34 PM   #48
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The planned trip sounds like fun but it's a long run from NH unless I make it into an extended visit to the SW. It would be a nice change from east coast rockhounding.

I hope to make it out to Tucson in Feb. 2016 and then up to Utah when the weather permits. Has anything firmed up for 2016?
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Old 05-12-2015, 08:38 PM   #49
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Yep, it's a long run even from Illinois.....but I'm going to go.

An opportunity not to be missed, for me.....because, you never know when it might be too late.



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Old 05-12-2015, 08:50 PM   #50
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I'm wondering, Ray, if supplies for this gig should include insect spray for the outside of our units.

Not something I have ever done....but wondering, so please advise.


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Old 05-12-2015, 09:32 PM   #51
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Maggie I will defer to Ray but add my comment. In AZ and NM there are not so many bugs but dusk always brings some out. My DH is a major bug magnet and we usually burn a coil in our campground and on some occasions a flat bottomed bug off citronella candle from HD. Still using Avon's Skin So Soft bug wipes, sprays and aerosols.

So excited you'll be able to do this trip.

For me when hiking I like to wear a Cambelback type water carrier. I can rest assured I have plenty of water and hands free. I have mounted a small camera pouch on the front strap that fits my phone or camera. Then I throw some energy bars in the small back pouch and strap a collapsible hiking stick to the pack. The hiking stick helps me with tired legs on up hills and give me more assured steps on the downhill.

Usually I come back with some water in the pack and smushy energy bars but I dehydrate easily in our high temps so rather safe.

Regards
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Old 05-13-2015, 05:40 AM   #52
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Thanks for those suggestions.

I was thinking more.....ants, spiders, etc., from being in one place a week.

I was looking at the hands free hydration things, as I will have to carry water for both myself and Lily. I don't want to invest too much in equipment I won't otherwise use, tho,

This will be a baby steps adventure for me, and I'm looking forward to the experience.


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Old 05-13-2015, 09:37 AM   #53
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They have silicone rubber bowls that collapse flat for storage. One would serve well for Lilly as a water bowl.
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Old 05-13-2015, 09:50 AM   #54
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I have never had any problem with insects of any kind. We always carry a can of spray on insect repellant for... other places. Part of Wyoming this year, for example, will have a bumper crop of mosquitos as it has been wet and there are lots of ponds at the present. They, the mosquitos will swarm you otherwise. Here where we would be I do not find it as a problem at all.

Water while hiking.
We use "used water bottles" and carry several in our satchels that we use to pick up agates and anything that looks interesting. You will be out collecting and hiking for several hours and then return to the campsite, so you need not worry too much about carrying a lot of water.

Snacks.
We usual carry a candy bar, I like Snickers myself, or some kind of similar energy bar that you like. You will lose some weight while browsing around hunting for chalcedony. While you are so busy, you forget you are thirsty, hungry or tired as you are focused on finding those unusual ones just barely sticking out of the ground.

When we are rock hunting in this area, we travel light. A couple water bottles. Some snack bars. An empty five gallon plastic bucket that will fill up as you are wandering around picking up agates. A satchel when not carrying the bucket. A sturdy walking stick you are comfortable. (I carry a stout "whacker stick".) If you find too many agates, you do not want to be loaded up with accessories.

Mornings can be cool, 50's, but once the sun is up it warms up... FAST. You will not notice sweating since it is very dry in the thin air. The light weight long sleeve shirts gets tied around your waste. A hat of some kind, unless you want to get a tan on your nose. You do not need any gloves to hunt. Light tennis shoes or hiking boot works. This is mostly flat hiking between basalt flows that are flat on top. You might be standing within 50 feet of a special find... but if you cannot climb around with slick bottom shoes... you might be afraid to get into some rougher areas.

This not a "walk in the Park" as there are no trails or signs saying what you can and cannot do. Keep your compass handy so you know, at least, which direction the camp site is to be found. A GPS tells you exactly how far you are and which way to go... My wife has the GPS. Some times you cannot tell from the Sun which way is East or West... and you can get disorientated.

This particular area is great for Newbies. It is remote, but not intimidating.

When someone PM's me... mention if you plan to go with the PRE Planning trip June 15, or the July 13th trip. It helps me keep things straight. If you miss a meeting time for departure and ARE or ARE NOT coming, we are not waiting. We just want to get into the back country while it is light and have time to set camp up and anyone can wander a bit to get an idea of... what they got themselves into.

Quemado, NM IS the most important meeting place to be. If you get there early... park, and eat at a restaurant. We will not leave any Airstream in town without looking for the owners, unless we have already departed.

As Maggie said... "baby steps adventure". Maybe a bit more than that, but nothing I would be over doing preparations as if you were planning to stay at a RV Park. Since my wife and I take all of this in stride from doing it all of the time, it is hard to imagine anyone who has not attempted this before.

A good flash light is handy.

I would appreciate that anyone who is coming... for sure... within a week to ten days of our meeting in Quemado, NM contact me so you can have our cell phone number.

As I said before. Those who find they are comfortable with this "off the grid" camping, we can discuss some other options for 2016 among ourselves. We play Pinochle cards each evening, my wife is better than I am, so we always have a deck of cards on board.

For those who are driving long distances... keep in touch on your progress. If you are going to be a day early or a day late, some suggestions can be given as to what to do. If we have cell phone service...
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Old 05-13-2015, 10:20 AM   #55
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I just want to emphasize one point.

This is a like a Paid For Cruise. When the ship is leaving port, it leaves.

This is not a Paid for Cruise, which means that some may decide at the last minute that they want to go to someone's birthday party than to the Gila National Forest. I do not know if you are or are not actually coming. If you change your mind, it would be welcomed if somebody knows. Nothing like waiting for someone who was not coming, anyways.

It is very important that we get to the camping site earlier, rather than later in the afternoon. If everyone is accounted for at Quemado, NM that was expected... we will be leaving EARLIER than 2:30PM. General Custer waited for reinforcements that never arrived. I have learned from General Custer's experience.

This movie has a beginning DATE and TIME. You can decide how much time you want to spend with us and other boondockers. You can stay and explore for as long as you like.

From here you can get to many other local places and other sites in the Southwest. You could easily spend a week to ten days just exploring this area. Once you get adjusted, you might come back like we have for many years. You can bicycle the dirt/rocky roads too. You can drive to other areas and use this as a base camp. Just a great way to discover that being remote does not limit what options you might be able to find.

While you are exploring, you mark a nice camping spot onto your map. That is how it is done. One "baby step" at a time.

If you like the outdoors, this is a good place to start. Newbie's will find it a quick learning experience. Those who have experience will give this no second thoughts. Our Blue Heelers love the hiking and running loose.

Big Foot, UFO's and other things that you hear about are not here. Wrong area of New Mexico or State. We are here for Rosettes and bragging rights of that special find. Some will look like buttons, animals and miniature caverns with small drusy quartz crystals inside. Only YOUR imagination will limit how much fun you can expect. Us... we will be happy that you have an interest in visiting this area.
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Old 05-13-2015, 11:49 AM   #56
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Thanks for all that, Ray. Good to know we won't be out 8-10 hours at a time, which helps a lot especially when thinking about carrying water.

I do have one of those collapsible bowls for Lily.


Two things.....

At a routine visit to a physician this morning, I obtained a prescription for Keflex which I will fill just before I leave.....just in case...injury, tooth abscess, that kind of thing. Knowing of this trip, and the one in late September, she did not hesitate to give it to me.

Secondly.....am I the only one heading to this great adventure, or the only one babbling about it here..

Is it a secret....who is going?

I would like others to post, just to know.


Maggie....really looking forward to this.
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