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Start A Rock Collection.

Start a Rock Collection.

Giving a sample of rock specimens, can be a good start for a child interested in geology. ( Rock Collecting).

They’re handy and everywhere, small, and not too expensive.

The rock above is Pyrite.

These rocks are called fools gold when they show shinny bits of gold.

Peacock Ore when they show colours of a peacock feather.

All you need to start

Books, maps, a good rock hammer, a magnifier, and the guidance of local experts will take your interest  further.

Starting Collecting Rock/Stones.

Start your Rock Collection  , buying a pamphlet/book about rocks/gemstones and a few basic tools, is all you need to begin. 

Going on holidays in the car, stop and have a look around, on the side of the road, there is  lots of places where you can find all different types of  rocks.

  Yes you can buy them but you don’t know if they are real.


My first rock was from a creek bed. I liked the colour of the rock I picked up. 

First thing I did was cut it in half, I wanted to see more colour. Then I tumbled it, to make it shinny.

Next I put a hole in it, so I could where it as a neck lace.

crystal cleaned

Is  Your Rock Real.

Crystals straight out of the ground.

How do you  know if your rock is real or not.

Well if you go to a tourist shop and buy something packaged in a beautiful boxes or card, you can guest they are made by the millions, for shops.

Don’t buy collections that are glued to a card—that discourages close examination of the rocks.

Your rocks should still be dirty and have  it’s own personality-look.

Shinny Rocks, Rock with Colour. Some rocks are the same size but one might be  heavy, than the other rock.

This is where you get the interest in being a rock-hound/Fossicking-means looking for something.

Understanding and finding out Why the different. Colours.

Slices of coloured rocks


The blue rock at the back is Lapis Lazuli.

Click here to find out more

Lapidary Club.

Joining your local Rock (lapidary ) Club Is a good idea. They will help you out, where to find rocks. Most of the time the clubs have tag along tours, and they show you what to look for.

There is a lot of shop that have samples of rocks, never buy ones that are  clean and pretty/shiny. Buy dirty rocks and clean them up your self. use washing up detergent and a brush. to clean the dirt off. Again you local Lapidary club has the equipment to make your rock shine. Parents will most likely have to do all the work, because most clubs wont let children under 12 years use there machine.

Lapidary Equipment.

Another away is to buy your own equipment. To clean and polish small rocks is to use a tumbler.

Tumblers are used to put a high polish on stones, they round of the corners, come out pretty shinny. Takes up to 6 weeks.

The best  way is to go to your local Lapidary Club and join, they have lots of equipment to use, and show you how to use the equipment and cut and polish your stone.

There is lots of interest things to see on the internet.

My First tool.
When I started out I used a Dremel to clean my rocks. I had to wear a mask because of the dust.My first stones I tried to polish was a opal, opal is mostly sandstone, so it was quite easy to shape a stone.

With harder stone like a Amethyst, that are not clear, hit them with a hammer to make them smaller, then go and shape them. using a tumble to polish  these stones are much easier way.

Use Wet and Dry Sand Paper.

Using wet and dry sand paper to polish a stone. Have a flat piece of glass, put your sand paper on the glass, wet if and start rubbing, it does take a long time. ( Do it while watching TV.)

You can join your local lapidary and use there equipment.

Happy Fossicking.

Please leave a comment.

Have a great day.




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Old Mine Towns

Thomas Died 15/21912
Thomas Tame died 15/02/1912

Old Mine Towns.

To hot to look for Gemstones, we went exploring Old Mine Towns. Thomas Died on 15/02/1912, he  was from England (click on the picture to make it larger).

On valentine’s day 2016, we went for a drive, for something to do. We both like the open country side, Made a picnic lunch, lots of drinks . The temperature was going to get up around 42 degrees, so we were not going to be able to do much gem hunting.

We started out at 7am. McDonalds  was our first stop for coffee and hash browns. Left Mount Isa and headed towards Cloncurry, The turn off is nearly half way between towns. 58 kl east of Mount Isa And 60 kl west of Cloncurry. Next to the turn off, on the other side off the road ,there is a camping ground. In the winter month it is full off caravans. Free Camping. Summer months no one camps.

Fountain Springs.

A small bush near road
Two birds in a bush

Rosebud Station- sign when you go over the grid This road takes you to Fountain Springs. This road was used when  they filming the movie Crocodile Dundee. The road is dirt and it is around 26 kl, 4 wheel drive country. lots off wash out, along the road. The copper prices are low, so there no mining companies working out this way a the moment, so the roads  are not getting graded.  Do not go on this road, if it is going to rain.

This area has had a fair bit of rain this season, so we thought that the springs, water would be flowing  down the mountain, at least wash out the creek, nice and clean water. No sign of water. There were people camping in the creek, so there was no water to be seen. The waterfall was not to be seen , the whole area is really  over grown, not nice at all. We did not stop at Fountain Springs.

About Fountain Springs. I have not seen the falls flowing. I have only seen water seeping out of the hill, lower down.  Fountain Springs( was) is the main waterhole for the station owners  and mines in the area, Plus the animals. A Huge gash in the Fountain Range marks the entrance to Fountain Springs. This is where a geological faultline allows the watertable to come to the surface, providing a year round spring. Very nice place when we have a lot of rain.

Rough Roads Rough Roads[/caption]


Highville: We took the first turn to the left on our way back from Fountain Springs. At the start of the track there is a sign post about the area. This track takes you along a creek bed. There is a big stone-cement walls along the creek bed, how much work went into it and it is still standing today. This track is for 4 wheel drives only. There was no creek crossing with boggy conditions because we have not had enough rain, just slow driving over very rocky country roads.. Along the way there is evidence of a railway track. Highville Cemetery we stop and had a look around and took pictures. Lots of big pieces of mica lying around every where.

Highville was established in 1913 as working quarters for the Wee MacGregor Mine the other side of the ranges. The town was connected to Ballara by 2′ gauge tram line. The MacGregor Hotel and post office operated in the town from 1909 to 1914. A school also operated here and catered for the children of both Highville and Ballara. Ballara water supply came from Fountain Springs

Ballara Cemetery.

Next stop  on our way up to the Wee MacGregor Mine was Ballara  Cemetery. Local Councils have put sign up. The town of Ballara was established in 1913, After originally being named “mineral” Ballara was located  on the railway line from Malbon  in the south to the Wee MacGregor mine in the mountains to the north.(.Malbon town is still  there. It has a railway line, a couple of houses, and a phone box, in the only street through the town.)The last train pulled into Ballara in 1927, soon after, the rail line was dismantled due to a decline in copper prices.

The track up the hill to the tunnel has  ( road is marked with red poles) some very bad washout, slow driving big drop off, The car tilts to 20 degrees plus in some spots. It is mountain country

Beautiful Tree
This tree is on the road to the tunnel

Look down , lock out, what a beautiful sight. My partner jokes about if he had to turn around on this road, but them we came to a open spot on the hill (mountain) where you could turn around. We were not at Wee MacGregor mine, we were at the tunnel above the mine.  There was bats in the tunnel , I did not go through, On the other side of the tunnel you look down on what used to be the Wee MacGregor, over the years it has open up a number of times. there used to be a road around to the mine, but it just to rough now days, even for a four wheel drives because, it is all mountains rock country.

Update 2019, there is a mining  company working in the area and you can drive to Wee MacGregor Mine the road has been graded.

Early Miners
Miners when there was no car or trucks only trains and trams.

The tunnel is the only railway tunnel in the north west of Queensland. to see it ,to think, how they did it, The stone work-cement work. Picture on right is the men working on the tunnel in the old days.

Wee MacGregor Mine. You can still get there, by going different ways. You can go around the hills and come out at Cattle yards. Do not follow directions  to turn of 48kl out of Mount Isa, the Mount Frosty Road. (Picture On top of this  page is Mt Frosty water hole all dried up). This road is for 4 wheel drivers only, there is very rough spots. 2019 yes. (Gutsack hill ) is very rough, We have heard of people freezing because this hill is very rough.Lotsof wash outs, and big holes.

Wee MacGregor mine Tunnel 2016
The Tunnel Wee MacGregor mine 2016

Overall it was a very nice day out, with my better half. The only stones we picked up was some mica (big Pieces). There was a lot of coloured glass lying around.

Not Gemstones Coloured Glass
Coloured Glass

This is my story about exploring old 2016. I will  add to it another time if you want to go to Wee Mac Gregor mine or look for Maltese Cross, Crystals, and more gemstones. Leave a  comment, and I will get back to you

Make sure you zoom in on the pictures. And have a look at some other picture in the  image post.  Have a nice day.

Please leave me a comment and share this page. Do you know who Thomas is, and how he got to Australia in the early 1900.

2019 update.

The road to Wee MacGregor mine has been graded. (Fountain springs) going the back way, is not as rough. Explore the old mine towns and the tunnel, follow the signs. Right will take you up to the tunnel, Left will take you to the old mine Wee MacGregor.

Bye For now.

Happy and Safe Exploring.


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Three main oxides of iron-Minerals.

The three main oxides of iron

Iron(III) oxide or ferric oxide is the inorganic compound with the formula Fe2O3.

Iron(II) oxide (FeO), which is rare,

Iron(II,III) oxide (Fe3O4), which also occurs naturally as the mineral magnetite.

As the mineral known as Hematite, Fe2O3 is the main source of iron for the steel industry.

Fe2O3 is ferromagnetic, dark red, and readily attacked by acids. Iron(III) oxide is often called rust, and to some extent this label is useful, because rust shares several properties and has a similar composition. To a chemist, rust is considered an ill-defined material, described as hydrated ferric oxide.[

Rust is an iron oxide, usually red oxide formed by the redox reaction of iron and oxygen in the presence of water or air moisture.

Standard Tumble Polish for Rocks and Glass Aluminum Oxide (1 lb)


A very fine powder of ferric oxide is known as “jeweller’s rouge”, “red rouge”, or simply rouge. It is used to put the final polish on metallic jewellery and lenses, and historically as a cosmetic. Rouge cuts more slowly than some modern polishes, such as cerium(IV) oxide, but is still used in optics fabrication and by jewellers for the superior finish it can produce. When polishing gold, the rouge slightly stains the gold, which contributes to the appearance of the finished piece.

Rouge is sold as a powder, paste, laced on polishing cloths, or solid bar (with a wax or grease binder). Other polishing compounds are also often called “rouge”, even when they do not contain iron oxide. Jewellers remove the residual rouge on jewellery by use of ultrasonic cleaning. Products sold as “stropping compound” are often applied to a leather strop to assist in getting a razor edge on knives, straight razors, or any other edged tool

More to Come

Leave me a comment and help me add to this story about oxides of iron-Minerals.

Have a great day.


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Mount Isa-Cloncurry Fossicking. Looking for Gemstones.

Mount Isa-Cloncurry Fossicking. Looking for Gemstones.

Country roads. Looking out for all the animals on the roads.

Mount Isa and Cloncurry Fossicking.

Between Mount Isa and Cloncurry Fossicking for Gemstones is a Hobby. Looking for Gem Stones is very addictive. You can go to the same spot several times looking for that perfect stone.

You can do lots of Gem Holiday’s , and Gem Camping trip.

Half way between Mount Isa and Cloncurry there is lots of different area’s to go fossicking. Then you have lots of area around Mount Isa, and around Cloncurry.

North West Queensland Fossicking Area’s.

You have to have a Fossicking Licence, before you can go Gem huntering/Fossicking in Queensland.

Out here you can explore the country side, bush,  You should  have a 4 wheel drive and a good GPS, if you are going bush.

Tag A Long Tours.

You can arrange to get some one to take you out to some of these places. Tag Along Tours –Find Gemstones- Find Rocks-Where To Go- What to look for.

Cloncurry Name.

January 1861,  Burke and Wills expedition through central Australia reached a creek that Burke named Cloncurry, he named it after his aunt, Lady Elizabeth Cloncurry of County Galway.


Looking For Gemstones.

Some of the places I have been fossicking-looking for Gemstones.

I will be add stories about my Gem hunting over time so kept coming back to find out more about finding gemstones.

Places I have been so far.

Mount Frosty

Crystal Mountain

Toms Mountain

Fountain Spring

Maltese Crosses


Amethyst Castle.

Mary Kathleen


Selwyn. Amethyst Castle.

Otherside of  Cloncurry.

Fullarton River.

Chudleigh Park.

Moonshine Hill.


Agate Creek.

To visit the places above, you have to get permission. The land all over our beautiful country is owned by someone.All it take is a phone call.

I am learning every day about the gems and minerals that are out here.

Contact me if you would like to go down to the Mount Isa Club House.

Contact me.

Happy Fossicking.




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Fossicking-Rockhound- what do they do.


What is Fossicking.

What is a Rockhound.

Rockhound and a Fossicker are the same thing. People that look for Gemstone -Rocks- Stones-Minerals.

They search every where for gems.

What you need. How do you start looking for gemstone.

Finding Gemstones.

What to look for when collecting rocks/ gemstones .

My Story plus things I have learnt while looking for gemstones.RocksMinerals.

I will tell you different things and places to go to look for gemstones, this is my Website, my Story, if you want to add something to it please do.

Contact Me or leave a Comment

Fossicking Means Or Rockhound Means.

1:      To search for gold or Precious stones in abandoned workings , rivers  ect.

2:       To search for something amongst other things.

Fossick Means

To search for minerals for a purpose other than commercial gain to a depth 2 meters by.

  1.     digging by hand
  2.     using hand held instruments

Fossicking is a unique and fun way to see and explore some of the most scenic out back landscapes where ever you live. Just love to go out on weekend trips, do nothing. but digging holes.

Queensland Fossicking Laws

In Queensland Australia, the government has dedicated fossicking area’s, they are located throughout the state. There is a lot of places you can go fossicking outside these dedicated area’s. A lot of stations/ mining company will have camping area’s , some times you have to pay camping fees.  You always have to get permission before going . Ask lots of Question before you go.

Fossicking Laws are Different in All States in Australia and overseas. Do your Research, before you go.

Fossicking Licence. For Qld.

First thing you need is a fossicking Licence. go to

I live in Queensland I  buy  my fossicking  Licence monthly, as you do not go out every month fossicking, If you are going out fossicking it is to easy to get a licence on line before you go. Send yourself a  receipt to your e-mail account. Other wise most tourist shop sell them.  One month Fossicking Licence is around   $11.

Have your Licence on you.

I have been out fossicking in Queensland and a mining department employee came and ask us if we had a licence. We were 200 kl from a town. So It pays to have a  Fossicking Licence.  In Australia every state is different.

Lapidary Club.

Join your local Lapidary Club.

Lapidary clubs have field trips and they show you what  gemstones to look for. They take you to some great spots. Our club have a lot of stones on display at there club house,  from all over the world, None of  them have much valuable.

Going out by yourself,  which we do all the time is ok,  Try to get enough information about what to look for and where to go. It took us two years to find a easy way to get to one fossicking area, everyone told us different stories on how to get there. That is why field trips, tag along tours are great way to find and learn about Gemstones.


When we first started looking for Gemstones everyone, sort of did not want to tell you where to go. Even now they all tell you different stories.  So it is a good idea to do research before you leave.   One place we went to was O’Brien Creek, there is a lot of stories there to find topaz. We dug in the creek, unsuccessful. The other people we were with went over the other side of the hill and found a nice blue Topaz Three times Fossicking to O’Briens creek we found a nice blue 59ct  topaz, plus a lots of  smaller ones.

Field Trips Take along tours. Contact Me

Field trips is a group of people that go out together looking for gemstones. Day trips or overnight. It is good to go out with a groups of people. Showing of your finding  is great fun. Tag along tours is great when you do not know what to look for and if you do not have any equipment. We did a tag along tour for Sapphires, so we could learn and understand more about how to find them, what to do, it was a great help.

What you need To Fossick:

Sunscreen and shade.

When going fossicking make sure all of your own needs are catered for first. First off you need to cover up from the sun. Sun screen and shade is a must have items. We put a shade cover up over our dig.

A chair, Lots and lots of water drinking and washing water, food. Safety  Kit  for injuries like rock splinters cuts . Safety Equipment  and safe tools are a must have items. Safety Goggles ,Gloves, closed in shoes. Tools  Every year rock collectors are injured – including being blinded, by using the wrong hammers.

Hammer and Hammers.

Geologists hammers are made of special steels, and the striking ends are bevelled to prevent steel splinters from flying of them. Special geological chisels are made for the same reason.

Where do I dig.

When starting of in Queensland , designated fossicking areas,  you can get a map of the area on the internet at Queensland Department of Mines and Energy, ( Or Stop at the tourist  shop in the town nearest to where you are going to dig these people are very helpful) It  will show you tracks where you can dig. When arriving you will see a lot off holes every where. If the hole has a bucket , pick, or  some thing else in it, it is a no go area. You can do the same to your hole when you start digging. It is a known rule with fossickers. But be careful because there are people out there that steal equipment. So you have found your hole.

  1.   Know were to dig.

Move a lot of dirt.


You have to move a lot of  dirt , to find a Gemstone .most/sometimes you wont find what you are looking for. We use a sieve . We look through most of the dirt we move. Sieve come in all sizes. We have a  steel stick about 5 feet tall, that holds our sieve, so we fill and shack.

How dip to dig.

The dirt at the Top/Sides of your hole you  are in you have top soil, which is were grass grows/what we walk on. Then you have another layer which is  called sub-soil, you will see the different colour or grit/dirt of the soil. All that soil  has to come off.

You can find gemstone on the surface too.

Next layer off soil is called the wash, this is where you find the gemstones. The next layer is clay that you don’t have to move. Using sieve is a good idea when first starting out. Some gemstones like sapphire do show there colour/shine , until they have wash on them.  Opal is the same.

Virgin Ground.

Some areas the soil that has not been worked,  it is virgin ground. Meaning it has not been dug up.

I can remember digging  a hole 2 meters deep, and in our sieve was a one cent piece.

2  Known were to dig. Luck.

Tumbled Amethyst From Amethyst Castle
Tumbled Amethyst From Amethyst Castle

Amethyst Castle.

At Amethyst Castle there is Amethyst everywhere.  The mine has graded  the roads and have a very nice camping area. We found a nice shady tree and started our own hole. Very easy work. You just have to pick a spot and dig, the soil is very rocky with amethyst.  Amethyst Castle you need permission to go there. The mining company only want to make sure you return home safely from your trip out fossicking.


Crystals from Crystal Mountain

The hardest thing is climbing up the hill.  It again is rocky soil,  just dig softly, you don’t want to brake that cluster of crystal. There  is 3  ways to get to Crystal Mountain.

Toms Mountain.

Toms. mountain again you have to Climb. Lots of different Rocks/Gemstone to pick up in this area.




One of My fossicking trips

Fossicking for Agate July 2015

My first gemstone is The Agate. We did a day trip to Agate creek in Central Queensland.  July 2015. The road is dirt,  It has lots of ups and downs, ( creek/gullies, and hills) This is one road not to be on in the wet season.

Camping Grounds.

After travelling for a good hour we came to a camping ground on our right. Because we did not know,  what or where to go ,we decided to follower the road to the end .( we did have a map of the area) At the end of the road was another camping ground. We turned around and turned off, at the first turn to right, drove in as far as we could, got out and had a look around , there was smashed rocks everywhere.

Tumble the rocks.

I picked up a lot of small whole agates. knowing I can put them in the tumbler. when I get home.

Moved On After Lunch.

Had lunch and move on, We did the next turn to right, stopped at the creek bed first , there was agate in the creek bed, drove on where there was a lot of cows,  we had a look  around picked up a few more agates.

First turn Right.

Our next turn to the right was a long drive in. You have to stop and look around all the time, this  is where we found most of our agates. There was diggings everywhere, smashed agates everywhere. The different colours were everywhere. I picked up a lot of broken agates the colours were beautiful, they can be used for everything, like jewellery , cladding pot ,soap container and more, beautiful colours.

Going Back to Agate Creek.

Agate Creek is must go back to places.

Second time we went to agate creek 2017.  We camped at the first camping grounds. The people there are very helpful. Spent. a week there, at the camping grounds, there is toilets and showers. Cost was $7.50 a night each.

We will be going again one day.

Lake Moondarra Mount Isa.

Another place I went to for Agates. Lake Moondarra near Mount Isa. These we call Gooseberry Agates. Over time I have picked up a lot of broken ones, They have a lot of fractures in the stone, so they just crumble when you cut them, I don’t know if there is a chance of getting a whole one. But again There is  lots of things you can do  with them. They have lots of colours like greens, red, dirty yellows and browns.

Gooseberry Agate.

They are call Gooseberry because the outside of the stone looks , is like a lot of small berries stuck together.

There is a lot of different agates across our beautiful country. The colours are just beautiful.

Please leave a Comment.

I would love to hear about your fossicking trips, love hearing about other people finds. Need any help please leave  a comment and I will get back to you as soon as I can. Thank  You Wendy

Contact Me.


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Lead Rock-Lead Mineral.

Lead Rock-Lead Mineral.

What does a lead rock look like.  Images of a beautiful lead rock.

Out in the sun it looks like, it has millions of  shiny silver sparkles

Lead it a very soft material, cutting this big rock was a easy cut, using water.

There is other minerals that show up in this beautiful Lead Mineral Rock.

You can see native  copper  running through it.

This rock is beautiful, If is a very shiny rock.


Image of a lead rock that I cut in half.

Lead rock

Lead rock cut in half.

This  lead rock has natural copper running through it. Has sparkles of the Peacock ore.
To touch and hole this beautiful rock, if is a beautiful Rock. The inside of the rock show other minerals, and is not as pretty as the out side.

When cutting this rock, Lead rock  was so soft the blade just went through it  with ease.. The rock it self is very heavy to pick up.  Lucky the rock is so shinny, as it would be impossible to polish it being so soft.

Sources: Of Lead

Lead exists in its native form, though it is rare. Lead may be obtained from Galena (PbS) by a roasting process. Other common lead minerals include Anglesite, Cerussite, and Minim.

More pictures of this beautiful Lead Rock/Mineral, I found.



I Hope you Enjoy these pictures.

I live in a mining town, where lead dust is. They have TV adds, about what you can do to avoid getting lead poisoning.

How bad is it.?.

Lead toxicity, also often referred to as lead poisoning

Have a great day.


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Gemstone Names and Images.


Colours. Multicolours-Green-Red-Oranges-Yellow-Blue-Pink and more.


Agate is a variety of chalcedony that forms in concentric layers in a remarkable variety of colours and textures. The crystals vary in clarity from opaque to translucent to transparent. Agate quartz was highly valued as a talisman or amulet during ancient times, and to this day, are still one of the most popular jewellery gemstones

Agate Geode.

Agate geode gemstones appear to be nothing but ordinary rocks on the outside, but take a quick peek inside and you’ll surely be amazed at the stunning growth and clusters of chalcedony quartz crystals inside them.



Garnets comprise a family of complex silicates with widely varying chemical composition but similar structures. The most common garnet is almandine (or almandite), which is dark brownish- or purplish-red. Garnet is very popular for its excellent hardness (7-7.5) and its brilliance due to its high refractive index.


Amazonite is a gemstone variety of green microcline, a feldspar mineral. It is named after the Amazon River in Brazil, though surprisingly no deposits have been found in that location. The lively green or blue-green colour is extremely attractive. Amazonite, cut en cabochon, with a rounded and convex polished surface, is a classic stone to be set in silver rings or carved in imaginative forms. In fact a fine quality amazonite can be mistaken for precious jade.


Amethyst is a variety of crystalline quartz in colours ranging from pale lilac to deep reddish purple and ranging from transparent to translucent is known as amethyst. Green amethyst is known as prasiolite, and is produced by heat treatment

Amethyst Geode

Amethyst geodes are rock cavities or vugs with internal crystal formations in colours ranging from pale lilac to deep reddish purple and ranging from transparent to translucent. Amethyst geodes can be small nodules cut in half or pieces of larger geodes sold as crystal clusters


Quartz which occurs in bands of yellow and purple has been given the name of ametrine (amethyst + citrine).


Ammolite is a rare gemstone of organic origin that is fairly new to the market, with commercial mining beginning only in 1981. Ammolite is the fossilized shell of ammonites, which are composed primarily of aragonite, the same mineral that makes up nacreous pearls. Ammolite’s main attraction is a remarkably vivid play of colour.


Andalusite is a strongly pleochroic gem, which means that is has different colours when viewed from different directions. While it is a strikingly beautiful gem, it is largely unknown by the gem buying public. With a hardness of 7-7.5 on the Moths scale, it is very suitable for all kinds of jewellery

Andesine Labradorite

Andesine is a member of the plagioclase feldspar group, which also includes labradorite and sunstone. All the members of this group are a mixture of albite and anorthite, with andesine being 50-70% albite and 30-50% anorthite.


Apatite, a stone seldom found in jewellery stores and virtually unknown to the general public, is beloved by collectors for its many different colours and forms.


Aquamarine is best known for its breathtaking range of blue colours and belongs to the same family as emerald (beryl).


Aventurine is a type of quartz frequently used for carvings and cabochons. Aventurine is mainly dark green sometimes with a glittery metallic appearance caused by included green mica


Azurite is an intense blue gem that gets its bright azure blue colour from copper, and is related to malachite, which is also a copper carbonate mineral

Please click on each gemstone to read more my favourite is the Ammolite,  The feature Image.I have to save up to buy this stone. Love the colours.

Please if you know more names of stones that start with A. Please leave me a comment. Love reading about different stones.

Contact Me

Have a great day.


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What are Macrocrystalline- Crypocrystalline Quartz


What are Macrocrystalline- Crypocrystalline Quartz

How are Macrocrystalline- and Cryptocrystalline Quartz Different?

How is Macrocrystalline Quartz different from the Cryptocrystalline Quartz ?

Macrocrystalline Quartz like Amethyst and Rose Quartz are generally transparent-translucent. Clear crystals are so beautiful.

Cryptocrystallines like agates are more often opaque. Agates and Cryptocrystallines can be slightly softer than Macrocrystallines, 6.5 on Moh’s scale rather than a full 7.

Cryptocrystallines have a duller, wax-like luster while Microcrystallines have a shiny, vitreous luster.

Cryptocrystallines have a higher water content as well as other non-quartz ingredients, up to 20% more.

Because the Cryptocrystalline Quartz can include several Non-Quartz minerals, many of these Quartz are considered Rocks.

Macrocrystalline Quartz– like.   Amethyst, Citrine, Tigereye, and Smoky Quartz, which are more likely called Gems, Gemstones or “stone due to their Purity, Bling, shine.

Cryptocrystalline Quartz  can look like a Coloured Rock or a dirty rock until it is broken, smashed or cut open.  Picking one up, the colours get your attention.  Check out Agate. Lots of beautiful colours.

These are my Agate From Agate Creek in Qld.

Small Different Colours Agate

Agate from agate creek Qld

Cut Agate Stone

Agates from agate creek in Qld





Agate come in lots of colours have a look at these agate pictures .  Are they Real?

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Garnet Gemstones

Finding  Garnet . Red-Pinkie- Purple Colour.

Fossicking for Garnet in the area in North West Queensland Australia , there is a lot of different places to find Garnets. Out side Cloncurry there is a hill where we go, and there is garnet everywhere , only trouble, they have all mostly got flaws in them. They do come out nice and shinny out of the tumbler. Mine you, you can find good ones, that can be faceted Garnets.

Check out the video below and find out about finding garnets at Fullarton River. Fullarton River turn off is on the Winton road.

Garnets come in all colours. In addition to these six species, there are a number of other garnet varieties that are distinguished in the gem trade, based on their colour or other special properties. Altogether there are at least 17 different varieties of garnet.

In real life I have see a green garnet that had that many fractures.  Also a red garnet until you put it in the light, it is more pinkie to purple. These Garnets are from Fullarton River outside Cloncurry. The area is a Qld Government fossicking area.


Garnet Colour

Garnet is available in a veritable plethora of colours, such as yellow, orange, peach, green, red, purple, blue (rare), brown and pink. However, the most commonly occurring colour is red and the rarest is blue. Garnet also rarely occurs in colour-change varieties, which have a different colour depending on whether they are viewed in incandescent or natural light. The rarest colour-change garnet appears blue in daylight, and changes to purplish-red under torch light. Other colour-change garnets are green, beige, brown or grey in daylight, and change to reddish or purplish-pink under incandescent light. The colour of garnet is the most important quality factor.



Identifying Garnets

Garnet can be identified by its occurrence in metamorphic rock, its hardness (6.5 – 7.5 on the Mohs scale), colour, refractive index and cubic crystal structure. However, the quickest way to identify garnet is with the use of strong neodymium magnets. Garnet is attracted to neodymium magnets because it contains high concentrations of iron and/or manganese.

Garnet Cut and Shape

Rhodolite Garnet
Rhodolite Garnet

Garnets are extremely versatile and can be cut in any fashion and shape. Red garnet tends to be cut into standard shapes, whereas valuable garnets that are not often found in large sizes, such as Tsavorite and Demantoid, are cut into shapes that retain the most carat weight.


Garnet are very common.

Garnets have come in Many Colours.

 They also have many names: Almandine, Andradite, Demantoid, Grossularite, Hessonite, Pyrope, Rhodolite, Tsavorite, Spessartine, and Uvarovite, to quote but a few. But let us restrict ourselves to the most important and begin with the red garnets.  See the colour chart at the bottom of the page.

Green Tsavorite Garnet


Almandine Garnet
Almandine Garnet

Pyrope Garnet.

 Fiery red pyrope. Its spirited red, often with a slight brownish nuance, was a gemstone colour much in demand in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Pyrope is an individual member mineral of the Garnet group. Its dark, blood-red color is distinct and attractive, and makes a fine Garnet gemstone.

Almandine Garnet.

Almandine is perhaps the most common garnet. Gemstones always have some spessartine and pyrope components, and this creates a wide range of colours, including brown, red-brown, purplish red, wine red, purple, and deep red. Inclusions of asbestiform minerals (pyroxene or amphibole) create a chatoyancy that yields, in cabochons, a 4-rayed star.

Almandine Valuegar

It is also a popular gemstone and the most widely used Garnet in the gem trade. More gemstones are faceted from Almandine than any other type of Garnet. Only a small amount of Almandine crystals are transparent and light enough for gemstone use; most of the Almandine found is rough and opaque and not gem quality. Some Almandine Garnets display asterism ( star pattern) when polished as cabochons, and are known as “Star Garnets”.

Mica Schists

Almandine is often embedded in a mica schists, and forms very nice matrix pieces with perfectly formed symmetrical crystals. The schist matrix often breaks up due to weathering, resulting in the Almandine crystals breaking loose into individual, perfectly formed floater crystals which may be quite large.


Almandine, an iron- rich Garnet, is a minerals often found in metamorphic rocks such as gneiss.

Metamorphic Minerals.

In Mountain-forming areas, heat and pressure change existing rocks, and new minerals grow. These metamorphic minerals usually have a good crystal shape. Some Minerals, such as garnet, form over hundreds of thousands of years as heat and pressure gradually alter the rock

The Garnet can grow as large, eye shaped grains called Augens

Garnet Gneiss: A coarse-grained gneiss composed mainly of hornblende (black), plagioclase (white), and garnet (red) from Norway. Public domain photo by Woudloper.


Gneiss is a foliated metamorphic rock that has a banded appearance and is made up of granular mineral grains. It typically contains abundant quartz or feldspar minerals.





Garnet colour Chart.





 Looking for Garnet at Fullarton River outside Cloncurry north Qld.

I hope you have enjoyed this blog about garnets.

Have a nice day

Wendy. Please leave a comment.

Thank You.

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Rock Identification

Rock Identification.

Finding a stone that shines like a big piece of glass. Is it Glass or a gemstone. some gemstone don’t sparkle until you put water on them. The Sapphire is a rock in dirt until you put it in water, then it looks like glass.

Find a rock with shinning gold sparkles. Is it gold or fools gold.

The price of gold today.

Sand that has so many shining glitters in it.

Any good Rockhound/ Fossicker is bound to come across a rocks that he or she has trouble identifying.

The location of where the rock was found, can help Identify it, some times.

How to Look at a Rock.

People don’t usually look at rocks closely. So when they find a stone/ rock that intrigues them, they don’t know what to do, except to ask someone what it is, or they just forget about it.

Your local Lapidary Club.

I never new about our local Lapidary Club. The Members there can help you.

This is what you need to know before you can identify rocks and give each one its proper name.

Where did you find it.

There are simple clues all around. Does your area contain coal mines? Volcanoes? Granite quarries? Fossil beds? Caverns?

Birds Like Gemstones.

Birds carry some gemstones miles away from where the bird first seen that sparkle. You have glass, gemstones that sparkle like glass that I have come across are opals, sapphire, crystals, topaz. Plus there would be more.

Fossicking Trips or Going Rock hounding

When you go on a  Fossicking trip or Rock hounding  you normal plan where you are going and you know what you are looking for.  I have picked up rocks that I like, and I still don’t know what they are called. Learning more about rock will help me identify that Stone or Rock.

Make Sure Your Rock Is Genuine.

If you find your rock your self it has to be real/genuine , it is your stone.

Buying rock/stones you do not know , there is to many cheats out there .

If it is a crystal or sparkling rock to see straight through it is great. no lines or cracks.


Magnifier Glass.

You’ll need a magnifier.  You want a lightweight, powerful magnifier (also called a loupe) that has impeccable optics and is easy to use. Get the best magnifier for demanding jobs like inspecting gemstones and crystals; in the field, for quick looks at minerals, buy a decent magnifier you can afford to lose.

Your local Lapidary Club.

Join your local Lapidary Club.

Most of the information I have got about rocks is from my local Lapidary Club, most of the time you have to ask .

The members are full of information about where to find different rock/gemstones,  And most clubs have day trips  and weekend trips to find gemstone.

Clubs have rock/gemstones so you can see what you have to look for.

Plus the club have equipment to use to clean/cut/Polish your gemstone/rocks you find.

Rock Information.

Our planet is like a onion, made up of a number of layers.

In the centre is a solid core, which is surrounded  by Mantle and the crust.

We live on Earths surface on top of the crust, the tin outer layer that carries oceans and continents.(countries).

During earths formation, denser materials  such as iron, sank to the centre, while lighter materials such as silicates and other materials, rose to the surface.

How old are rocks.

Rocks formed when earth was cool enough for them to become solid.

The first rock on earth solidified around 4.2 billion years ago.

Rocks and Minerals have been forming ever since, and are still forming today.

At Earths Surface, In the Crust, On The Ocean Floor, and in the Mantle deep below.


4.2 billion years ago.

The oldest type of rock is Acasta Gneiss, which first formed 4.2 billion years ago.

Rock Identification

Finding that Gemstone is a great way for you to do rock  identification your self, understanding all the information out there about different rocks/stone, you never stop learning.

Lots Of Books out there.

There is lots of books out there, about Rocks, Stones and gemstones. Then you have all the different minerals. To kept it interesting and to learn about stones go to your local library and lend books.  Then again you can get a lot of information on the internet, and from your local Lapidary Club.

I love going out finding all sorts of stones/rocks, I am lucky I do not have to got far to find something. Camping out under the sky and counting the satellite that pass over a night. So peaceful.

Fossicker- Rockhound love what you do.  Enjoy have fun.

Have a great day.