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#51

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
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13 May 2015 08:10 pm

Lefty wrote:

He's starting to build up a collection there smile That smokey crystal in the foreground was one that he found on your first trip there isn't it?

It certainly was, and in the hole I had been digging in earlier that day.


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#52

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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26 May 2015 09:25 pm

Hey fellas,
Finally got a chance to go up & check out lowmead today, put in a solid day and came back with a small handful of colour. Bare with migh & I will work out this forum/photo stuff.
The site seems well worked over but managed to expand an existing hole and found a small patch of virgin ground that produce all the colour found today.
Hopefully will catch up with some of you in the field... cheers.


Go hard or go home!!!

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#53

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
Member
27 May 2015 09:01 am

Hi Ben,good to hear you found some Amethyst.
I've found the best way to add photos if you took them with your phone camera is to get an app that can reduce the photo size down and then import that to your computer.


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#54

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
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27 May 2015 01:38 pm

Gday Ben - yes, the site is well worked over but not yet worked out. Glad you found some colour! There is a range of colour shades at the spot, I quite like the one that is a kind of smokey purple but I've seen everything from the faintest tint of purple in a clear crystal, to bright mid-purple, to almost pink, to smokey purple to a deep clear purple.

And they do facet very nicely.

1 user likes this post: ktmman

#55

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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27 May 2015 07:39 pm

1432715658_image.jpg

You might say your thread has got me a tad inspired. After looking at on of Lefty's photos, I decided to have a go at whipping up a throw sieve today. No doubt it will need modifications but has got to be faster to work the overburden. Thanks KTMan, I have a re-sizer program that would do the trick hopefully get a few shots up later.


Go hard or go home!!!

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#56

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
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27 May 2015 07:52 pm

Looks good Ben. I really should whip myself up something like this.
At the moment I use 4 seives and 3 helpers to use them smile Wife and kids love to find what I leave in the seives for them smile


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#57

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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27 May 2015 08:31 pm

ktmman wrote:

Looks good Ben. I really should whip myself up something like this.
At the moment I use 4 seives and 3 helpers to use them smile Wife and kids love to find what I leave in the seives for them smile

Yeah, one of my daughters wants in on the next trip, good to have helpers..

The sieve cost me about $85 all up & about 3hrs to knock it up..will let you know how it goes.. Now...lets try these pics.
1432718929_img_4887_small.jpg
A wide but thin crystal
1432718929_img_4900_small.jpg
My 1st from the site... what a way to start
1432718929_img_4909_small.jpg
Most of the better crystals n bits.


Go hard or go home!!!

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#58

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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27 May 2015 08:33 pm

That last image was the wrong one... this is it hmm 1432719193_img_4911_small.jpg


Go hard or go home!!!

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#59

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
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27 May 2015 08:41 pm

Wow, you did well mate.
I might be heading up on Sunday,one of my mates is keen to get back to the hole he left last time he was there.
I'm hoping to find a bit more of the purple to go with the smokeys this time.


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#60

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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27 May 2015 08:53 pm

Thanks ktmman. My daughter has to work then so I will most likely go up friday when she has a day off & I am on an RDO wink. I bash around in an old red forester so if you see it, give me a yell.
Best of luck


Go hard or go home!!!

#61

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
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27 May 2015 09:50 pm

I will keep an eye out for you Ben,good luck and post some pic's of your finds.
Richard


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#62

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
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28 May 2015 07:25 am

Nice finds there Ben! I'm hoping to get back there soon, I'd like to be there this Sunday but I'm not sure if I can make it there yet.

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#63

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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28 May 2015 06:58 pm

Lefty wrote:

Nice finds there Ben! I'm hoping to get back there soon, I'd like to be there this Sunday but I'm not sure if I can make it there yet.

Thanks Lefty, after today I realised I was lucky....haha. Sunday is the only day I wont be there. Went back up again today but spent more time just scoping & testing different areas.
I noticed a few things, the main workings seem to run NNW to SSE, on the western side there is a lot more ironstone in the layer and the base rock is more of a reddish granite. On the East, less ironstone and the base is white. I know the Miriamvale fauldt is near here somewhere... Maybe this is right on it?
Spent the last few hours at the northern end where I came across a slightly thicker layer of coarser rock, looks the goods but only found one tiny, slightly coloured crystal.
Food for thought anyways...
Might even head back up tomorrow & will be taking a few of the family up Saturday, if my body can handle it smile

Will keep you posted.


Go hard or go home!!!

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#64

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
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29 May 2015 06:02 am

Yeah, there is much variation over short distances there - literally metres sometimes.

The first two times I went I dug on the southern side of the road and found nothing, the ground does look different. But there has been a helluva lot of digging done on that side so I assume people have found stuff there. A bloke showed me a large, clear quartz crystal about six inches long that supposedly came from that side.

Throw sieve looks good mate, I'm actually going to make up another one just for Lowmead. The one of mine in the photo is a heavy barstard (all steel frame) and the design was based on the ones they use out at Rubyvale - the wash typically contains a lot of large rocks, hence the side-chute to shed them off. But you don't have that at Lowmead, it's almost all sand and every bit of rock that you dig out is worth looking at. I probably won't even bother with the 1-inch mesh on top, just a sheet of quarter-inch.

Cheers

#65

rotor
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From: Gladstone, QLD
Joined: 24 May 2015
Posts: 232
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29 May 2015 10:40 am

I have a few acres on Tablelands rd (that's the one you turn right on at the Fingerboard) and lived there for a couple of years. The neighbour found the biggest smoky quartz that I've seen (haven't seen too many though) - from memory it had a diameter of at least 8" and was approx 12" long - believe it or not he stubbed his toe on it walking around his fence-line. Ended up there was a small area 10mx10m that we found amethyst and smoky quartz in. I've got a heap in a tin here somewhere - went looking for them the other day but they evaded me!

Last edited by rotor (29 May 2015 10:42 am)


I don't suffer from insanity, i enjoy every minute of it ......

#66

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 1,041
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29 May 2015 01:30 pm

Gday Rotor - you're a lucky bugger to have something like that on on your place. I believe that amethyst, smokey, citrine and clear quartz crystals occur in pockets here and there around the Miriam Vale - Lowmead area but the Clarke road site is the only one open to the public. Still some stuff there but I've never seen anything like the one behind the bar in the Lowmead pub.

It just gets me down no end to think that our region probably contains gemmy treasures dotted all over the place but there is no access to any of them. The geology is the right kind with great granite masses dominating our landscape and extinct volcanoes dotted about the place here and there.

Had you heard that small, non-gem quality sapphires have been found on gravel banks in the Boyne river? My guess is that Castletower or perhaps some other igneous formations in the Boyne valley are probably the source.

#67

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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29 May 2015 07:17 pm

Wow Rotor... Nice. If you ever need a sidekick to help on a dig, give me a yell smile.
Haven't heard of the sapphires lefty, only the zircons just south of Blackmans Gap (on my to-do list this winter). The country up around Nagoorin looks the part though. Hardly any access back up into the ranges there, lack of access & tracks.
Kingar creek was another sapphire spot, haven't got there yet either.
That throw sieve works well, the 1" actually is good the break up the clumps and help keep the tree roots out of the gravels.
Always keen and only work the odd weekend.


Go hard or go home!!!

#68

ktmman
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From: The bush, QLD
Joined: 06 May 2014
Posts: 629
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29 May 2015 09:39 pm

I'm going to head up on Sunday again for a dig , gotta do something to keep fit and digging holes is as good a way as any smile

Might see some of you there.


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#69

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
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29 May 2015 10:23 pm

ktmman wrote:

I'm going to head up on Sunday again for a dig , gotta do something to keep fit and digging holes is as good a way as any smile

Might see some of you there.

The girls are keen to give it a go so we are heading up in the morning as 1 has to work Sunday.... One day wink

Yeaah, can feel the muscles & joints after 3 solid days in the last 4. Only found a few small pale ones today. Most of what I found today was in the mid layers of already worked ground. I would say the old diggers had discarded them as most were low grade. found 2 nice little citrine looking points in a tiny dip that the last person had missed.
Going to head to the northwest sector tomorrow and work an area that seems to have a lot of coarse stone. Had a test there the other day, no points but seems to be the original layer.
If I do any food there I will let you know after 6 to tomorrow before you head up.


Go hard or go home!!!

#70

Lefty
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30 May 2015 07:12 am

I've heard about the zircons in the Boyne valley Ben, as well as good quality garnets close to Calliope. But as far as I know, the exact locations are lost in history, the stones being discovered more than a century ago by diggers who were chasing gold and to whom most gemstones were worthless. They are almost certainly on private property - as is the Lowmead dig site with only the generosity of the property owner giving us about the only fossicking area that exists for hundreds of kms.

I can't say I've heard of Kingar creek. But garnets were also found at Glassford creek, between Monto and Many Peaks at the very top of the Boyne valley. Many years ago, dad was shown some green stones that he said could have passed for sapphires that a bloke he was working with at the time said came from the Glassford creek area. He wouldn't go with the bloke chasing them - reckoned the bloke was a mad barstard who you probably wouldn't want to be in the bush alone with - but the stones themselves were certainly real. Green garnets perhaps?

I would say the old diggers had discarded them as most were low grade. found 2 nice little citrine looking points in a tiny dip that the last person had missed.

I found this bit of citrine there about four or five weeks ago. It's deceptive - the beautiful intense orange colour is only in a little thin plane and the rest is clear quartz.

16995968397_6e88b55e7e_c.jpg

I ended up cabbing it, putting the colour plane along the bottom of the cab so it reflected back up through the dome. It displays an opal-like play of colour through the orange and even took the eye of a jeweller. You can see how a little bit of the colour flaked out of the botttom.

17177502486_16c6aa8c00_c.jpg

Yeah - it's exciting to think that the Rockhampton-Gladstone-Bundaberg region could possibly have as much gem-bearing potential as the New England area. Maybe all our respective clubs could get together and lobby the government to look at opening up fossicking areas in our region smile .

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#71

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
Member
30 May 2015 07:37 am

Geez Lefty, t,hat is one pretty gem! I found a shard that has that same flake if colour through it.
Glassford.... Dad & I have been there, up to the old smelter site, we were escorted in there by old Roy Goody from the Monto side. Roy used to drove cattle over the range there, interesting trip. At the time we were only looking more at the old mine for gold.
My wife and I went back in there last year but the floods ripped the track out about 2km short of the old townsite. I would say after this years rains, it would be about a five km walk in.
I know where zircons are reported, it's state forest but haven't seen if there is a track down the ridge that can be walked, rough steep country.
Anyways, get the girls up for a dig & seems like we should get together sometime & nut out a plan of attack.


Go hard or go home!!!

#72

Varts
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Joined: 27 August 2013
Posts: 476
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30 May 2015 08:57 am

nice lefty.
the colour so different yikes


Varts........................................................................................varts...............................

#73

Bundy Ben
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From: Bundaberg, QLD
Joined: 19 May 2015
Posts: 124
Member
30 May 2015 06:51 pm

Actually Lefty, you don't know of that "mad bastard" lived up in there do you?
When Roy took us across the tos there, he Introduced us to a wild bloke who still lived right up on the top of the range about 10 k west of the mine. Used to show up in monto to get basic food every few months. Sure was a scary looking fella. Apparently he died a few years back. Green garnets..hmmm, that would be something else. There was another small workings area to the NNW of Glassford in the next valley, the track from the old township area was just walkable about 15 years ago & was about 4-5km in so we never ventured over. From memory it was called Chinamans... Looked like yowie country.

On another note... Today was a bit of a dud at Lowmead. 3 girls on the sieves and me shovelling like a mad man most of the day. First I gave a few hours in the NNW part, plenty of coarser stone on the layer but didn't turn either a comeplete point or any sign of clear or coloured shards.
After that I moved eastward an re-open an old hole where the ground colour was a bit whiter. (2 pieces of granite on top of the hole).
Got down to the layer and the first 2 shovel turned up 2 small bit nice coloured pieces. Got about 5 feet in but turned nothing else... Looked like most of it had been worked before.
To finish off we went last back up near the road and found most of the few pieces in the overburden, bottom layer was stubbies & steel 4x cans (that would be late 70s yeah?).
Would love to find a few feet of Virgin ground in between old workings..but that's prospecting...haha.


Go hard or go home!!!

#74

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 1,041
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31 May 2015 03:58 pm

Actually Lefty, you don't know of that "mad bastard" lived up in there do you?

Not sure Ben, it was about 35 years ago when I was just a kid. I have a feeling that he worked on the construction projects with dad in the 70's so probably not the same bloke. My biggest fear when trudging the the scrub-covered mountains is accidentally stumbling upon a big patch of electric cabbage and never being seen again smile

Prospecting sure is hit and miss ain't it? I pretty well bombed out last time as well, Richard was nice enough to give me a crystal to take home. Couple of times before that I hit a pocket - beautiful purple crystals were just falling out of the back wall of the hole with every scrape of the little miners pick. "This bodes well!" I thought - then they abruptly stopped coming and that was it for that day. I also tried some definate virgin ground on another occasion but after having dug down a metre to the hard floor, I discovered there was no quartz gravel layer and nothing dotted throughout the sand above either - yet literally a dozen paces away was an old hole where I found a couple of little points lying on the surface. Same where I found that pocket of nice crystals - I've dug all around that hole and found bugger all. But the crystals are definately still there, it's just a matter of finding them.

And yes, I too have excavated plenty of 70's memorabilia at Lowmead smile

But you gotta move the dirt to find the rock - never give up smile

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#75

Lefty
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Joined: 01 May 2014
Posts: 1,041
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31 May 2015 04:11 pm

Varts wrote:

nice lefty.
the colour so different yikes

It's a lovely colour Varts, I've found others like it there but I've yet to find one where the colour is properly spread through the stone to make it facetable.

But I reckon they probably are there - bloke who has been teaching me to facet found a very nicely coloured stone there years ago, a smokey citrine.

Just keep digging, digging, digging..... smile


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