July 31, 2000

It rained all day today. I made a mistake yesterday and said I was going to BBQ on Monday and see what happens. At the mine it makes no difference whether it rains or not since your all dressed out for the rain anyway. The weather is supposed to get better by the weekend, however, so they say.

Byron and I worked alone today, Dave had some business to take care of. There were a few more rock falls in the new drift since Sat so we have to timber the tunnel sooner rather than later. The saw mill was closed again today so we will either try someplace else or call Alister at home to get some proper timber. For square sets we use old Mozambique railroad ties made from hardwood, probably teak. For the type of timbering I want to do in the new drift they would be to heavy (they weigh about 200 lb. each) so I'm looking for something round, about 5 inches in diameter and 8 feet long. Then I need some lagging also to crib the ceiling tight.

The face in the new drift is becoming to wide since there are crystals everywhere. It's now 10 X 10 feet at the face. Byron seems to dig without thinking about the tunnel structure and I'll have to put a complete square set there to keep a safe tunnel.

The first thing I did was scale more of the ceiling so we could work beneath it. and then watched and wrapped specimens as Byron dug them out. Later in the day Byron used the saw to trim the larger pieces to manageable sizes while I dug at the face in Mick and Lindsay's tunnel. I found a small pocket of zoned purples and clear fluorite with large galena crystals. One galena crystal was 2 inches across and very well structured and the fluorites were bright and shiny.

I found an interesting formation at the face in Mick and Lindsay's tunnel, an open water coarse, with no water of coarse. There is no mineralization, even though it's within the vein, indicating that it is a post depositional feature. The walls are smooth and sculptured and I can't tell where it comes from or where it is going. It will make drilling difficult but it bars apart easily. Tomorrow I'll do some more barring and then muck the tunnel clean again.

Also, tomorrow, I'll drill some holes in the ceiling of the new drift on the left side to accommodate the timbers. I won't shoot it until I have the timbers ready on hand to be set in place.

More tomorrow. Cheers, Jim



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