Wednesday saw a much busier start to the mineral show at the Holiday Inn, with many more people crowding the halls and rooms. It did seem to slow a little again on the Thursday, so we wait to see what Friday brings with opening day at the main show at the Merchandise Mart.
Dave Bunk again had a queue outside his room on Wednesday morning for his 10am opening and debut of the Arizona collection of Harold Michel. Inside he had some very nice pieces including this huge Glove Mine Wulfenite approx 45 cm across.
Glove Mine Wulfenite
He also had this amazing Proustite from Chanarchillo, Chile. This specimen was part of a much larger piece which was originally in the Harvard collection. The large piece was split and trimmed to create several specimens, and this is one of the few matrix pieces. It is approx 15cm high.
Proustite from Chanarchillo, Chile
Continuing on our tour around the Holiday Inn, the Collector's Edge room was next. They always have a wonderful display in their room. This show they are premiering new 'neon green' Fluorites from Riemvasmaak in South Africa. These Fluorites were first discovered in 2006, and finer specimens have been found during 2007 and 2008. Collector's Edge are acquiring the specimens direct from the mine which have been dug and accumulated over the last year. There are some absolute stunners and the neon green colour is superb.
The Fluorites are all octahedral, of the neon-green colour, although on some specimens there is an overgrowth of smaller yellow cubes of Fluorites. The only associated mineral is Quartz.
Fluorite on Quartz
Gemini Minerals also had a very nice range of Fluorites from Okorusu, Namibia. Joe Kielbaso's son is working the specimens, and they are very attractive. Many are quite gemmy with clearly defined dark purple or green phantoms, and great lustre.
Gemmy Fluorite with dark purple phantoms.
Upstairs in the room of Zeb Guel of Germany. We quickly snapped up this aesthetic Aquamarine crystal from Pakistan.
Aquamarine on Albite with Mica from Pakistan
Zeb also had a new find of Apatites from Skardu in Pakistan.
Zeb holding one of the new Apatites
New Apatite from Skardu, Pakistan.
The Apatites are large and well formed hexagonal crystals. Some Apatite from the pocket are with Schorl Tourmaline.
We found some very unusual Calcite specimens in Chinese dealers Xu Ning from Hunan China. The Calcites are from Wenshan in Yunnan have formed in stalactitic to branching crystal forms, we purchase the one pictured below with orientated fern-like growth and satin lustre. Very unusual!
Calcite from Wenshan, Yunnan, China
On to Rockaholics room they had many interesting minerals from Pakistan and Afghanistan. This very large specimen caught our eye - a 'fruit salad' of Kunzite, Morganite, pale blue drusy Tourmaline, Quartz, Cleavelandite and Pollucite.
The fruit salad from Kunar, Afghanistan.
This specimen was straight from the mine, and had not even been cleaned.
Rockaholics also had this interesting Aquamarine, the crystal has formed almost like a mirror image twin, but with a hole most of the way through the centre of one half. It is a most unusual whistle.
The two specimens pictured below are both quite rare.
On the left is blue Afghanite on matrix from Sar-e-sang, Afghanistan.
On the right is orange Clinohumite crystal and blue Spinel crystal, either side on white marble matrix from Koksha Valley, Badakshan, Afghanistan. It is very rare to see Clinohumite crystals on matrix.
They also had this very rare Bastnaesite and Parisite combination specimen. The two minerals are intermingled as thin layers, one pseudomorphing the other (although we weren't sure which one was the pseudomorph), but it is very rare to get the two minerals together.
Bastnaesite and Parisite
Outside our room we bumped into Jesse Fisher who was full of tales of his summer collecting up at Rogerley Mine, Weardale, England. They had been continuing on in the Jewel Box pocket in which they had uncovered some superb specimens seen at Tucson this year. Their luck has continued, in the 'Bluebell' pocket - the continuation of the Jewel box pocket, with many new fantastic specimens. The Fluorite cubes are slightly smaller, but super sharp and lustrous. The colour is excellent, the typical deep green with amazing daylight fluorescence to violet blue, and the Fluorites don't have the frosty white centres seen in earlier specimens, which gives them a really gemmy deeply coloured appearance.
Jesse Fisher holding one of the new Fluorites from Rogerley.
Super sharp and lustrous crystals...
with deep green gemmy colour.
There were more lovely specimens to be seen in the shared room of Palagems (Bill Larson), Wayne Thompson and Alain Martaud.
Bill Larson had these nice pieces that caught my eye:
Some very nice Rubies on matrix from Burma - unfortunately with the USA trading embargo with Burma, there will be no more of these specimens coming into the States.
An unusual faden Adularia from Fich, Switzerland
Rhodochrosite from Peru.
Wayne A. Thompson had a very nice selection of Azurites and Malachites from Milpillas Mine in Mexico. These specimens were found over the last 3-4 months, so are new finds since Tucson when the last find was such a hit.
Malachite pseudomorph after Azurite from Milpillas, Sonora, Mexico.
Very nice Azurite crystals on Malachite from Milpillas
Tune again over the next few days for my next show report from the main show as there will be plenty more to see!