Monday, July 27, 2009

Greetings All,

BBC1 promised us a lot of rain and wind yesterday up here in the north. Happily we had a 5 minute spit and that was it. The rest of the day was a combination of blue sky and clouds and a decent breeze to help dry out the quarry, which remains very wet after the floods of 10 days ago.

Byron and I left early to drive over toward Barnard Castle to visit a blacksmith and see about getting a few decent scaling bars and long chisels made. An impressive building with two forges, 6 trip hammers and four people busy making specialty gates. It seems he can do the work for us but was a bit skeptical that drill steel only needs to be air hardened and not quenched but understood what we wanted done and how.

Kerith and Eric were picking up Dave and Joe but at the last minute she got a call from Exchem about a delivery so they all got to the quarry about the same time Byron and I got back from Barnard Castle -- around 11:30a.m.

Eric went back to mucking in the West Cross Cut and Byron crawled back into his pocket at the face which is diving downward into the floor and toward the vein and fault. I spent much of the rest of the day mucking out the Cross Cut on the west side about 30' back from Byron and filled several tubs of mostly single crystals and small clusters but some over 2". The most interesting part of the pocket zone there is a band of snow white aragonite covered clusters of fluorite which are quite attractive, likely they would fall apart if the aragonite were etched off. Byron is producing mostly wholesale material of good color, luster and clarity but damaged due to the collapse. He is finding the odd small stalactite group, which is nice.

Dave and Joe laid another 10' of track and are curving it around to the west to bring us back in line. Today they will finish timbering and hopefully a blast at the face. Dave is off on Friday and I would like two blasts at the face to further expose the area Byron is working.

No picture today, sadly my camera is either dead or injured in some way and unable to produce pictures at this time.

That's it from here,


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