Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Greetings All,

Rain was predicted for today and it started raining hard last night about 9:30 p.m. but we awoke to a cool clear morning and it stayed pleasant and sunny all day though it was raining up toward Tow Law to the East this morning when Byron picked up diesel.

Dave brought Kara and Shanade by this morning to help sort the small crystals while Bill and Jonina did the sawing and water-gunning of fluorite specimens. Dave spent the day underground mucking and drilling the East Crosscut.

Byron spent his time (with a plastic bag on his left hand to protect the stitched finger) watergunning the pocket in the north corner of the Northwest Crosscut which had produced some very fine 5”-6” stalactites of quartz with scattered green fluorite cubes and octahedrons of galena and the occasional gem twin of fluorite yesterday. His success was in the removal of lots and lots and lots of pocket mud and several fine stalactites, one about 6 ˝” in length and a 5” double and one that I have labeled Takashi’s Castle after the bizarre program of the same name on SPIKE television; a 15” or so quartz crystal matrix with perhaps a half dozen or so stalactites on it arrayed in the fashion of a castle, moat and guard room. The pocket continues on and Byron with his long reach and a 3’ wooden stake is just able to reach the back of the pocket where one or more stalactites are showing that are either loose or on matrix. The pocket is tending toward the new exit tunnel and, in fact, shows up as a small tight pocket that is face high on the right hand side of the exit tunnel about 6’ from where the current pocket is collected to.

I had a very boring day, spending it working at mucking out the Dipper Pocket. Yesterday’s work had pulled at least 6’ of rock, perhaps more, so there is a huge amount of rock in the pocket awaiting removal before prospecting for more pockets can begin. Perhaps the only excitement for me was the misfortune of dumping a wheelbarrow of muck over the side and having the mud in the bottom of the wheelbarrow grab the lode and not let go. I had to either let the whole affair shake, rattle and roll to the bottom of the dump without me or go with it. Getting an errant wheelbarrow back up an angle of repose dump is guaranteed to make you kiss the next elevator you encounter. After lunch I spent a bit of time rigging up a contraption to make sure my earlier adventures where not repeated.

Tomorrow more rain is predicted for the North, do hope they are as accurate tomorrow as they were today.

That’s all from this place way north of Lake Woebegone.

Regards, Cal

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