Penn-MD Quarry, Lancaster County, PA
September 10: Penn-MD Quarry
Here's Joe's announcement:
Signing up with Joe Marchesani is required - e-mail Jmarch06@comcast.net
The trip is limited to 40 FM-Pa members. If you have signed up and later find that you will not attend, contact Joe as soon as possible and tell him, so that someone on the waiting list can go. Please DO NOT BE A NO-SHOW.
On Saturday September 10 2016, confirmed attendees meet at the quarry by 9:00 a.m.
Safety protocols: each person MUST HAVE a hard hat (manufacture date no older than 3 years), safety boots, safety glasses, safety visibility vest, and gloves; and stay alert and use caution and common sense while on the property. No children under 18 years of age.
After a little while, Bob, Jose and Bill arrived and Joe showed them the photos. A few minutes later Donna showed up and we all went to the office for our safety orientation: hardhats, safety glasses and stay behind the berms as the faces are highly unstable. Other than that, we had free roam of the quarry.
The Penn/MD quarry is pretty big, being about 1/3 mile in diameter and 4 tiers deep. It’s primarily a crushed stone quarry and the majority of minerals are in the serpentine family.
Chris led us down into the quarry and turned us loose. Joe and I immediately went to the zircon area and Chris joined us. It wasn’t safe enough to get up to the main seam, but a fair amount of material had washed down. Chris picked up a clod, broke it open and in a few seconds found a zircon crystal. The crystals are quite small most being in the 1 to 2 mm range and a clear honey brown in color. Joe and I decided against searching for the zircons on site and each loaded up a flat of ‘black zircon’ mud. I brought about a 5 gallon bucket full home and panned 9 g of zircon crystals, the largest was 6mm. I’ll bring a vial of crystals to the October meeting.
We joined the others who by now had scattered throughout the quarry. Though we all searched for crystals and pockets, I don’t think any of us had much success. There was very little hammering. I think most of us picked up a variety of serpentine rocks that caught our fancy for one reason or another; color, shape, patterns, whatever.
I think the best find of the day was made by Bill Stephens. He found a rather extensive outcrop/pocket of chalcedony that was both colorful and translucent and collected close to 200 lbs. Some of it has a carnelian color, a pocket wall texture and covered with druzy quartz crystals. It’s quite pretty. I’ll bring a piece to the Oct. meeting.
And I’ve asked the other participants of bring a favorite piece or two from the days collecting.