GMS     The Georgia Mineral Society, Inc.
4138 Steve Reynolds Boulevard
Norcross, GA 30093-3059

GMS Field Trip

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GMS Field Trip
Stanford, KY
Saturday, May 20, 2017

Heavy rains before this trip were of concern, but they worked in our favor. Rain from the days prior to the trip washed out more geodes and fossils for us, plus, the water receded quickly so we still had plenty of gravel bars to search!

Before we started collecting in earnest, people were finding geodes by their vehicles! We promised to remove trash from the area, so volunteers worked on clean-up first and removed 4 bags full of trash!

The geodes in the southeast usually have sedimentary origins versus the igneous origins of geodes found in western states, so the rinds have a cratered appearance and there is little to no banding inside. Members found many classic sedimentary geodes with different types of quartz. Several geodes were filled with quartz crystals and loose, double terminated quartz crystals. Everyone was careful to preserve all of the contents of geodes that had an audible rattling sound when shaken. I saw several botryoidal chalcedony geodes and hematite coated quartz crystal geodes, too. There was even a cubic quartz geode. There was an unusual calcite geode, too. Normally we don't find calcite geodes there. My understanding is that water seeps into the void and dissolves the calcite, but this one definitely had big calcite crystals in it.

There were many Ordovician marine fossils, too. Though not abundant, crinoid stems can be found there and I saw a number of small stems. One was highly silicified and had a beautiful black and white striped appearance. There were brachiopods as well. Some were embedded in matrix and I found one loose specimen. Horn corals were popping out that day, too, especially some large specimens. One was attached to a geode!

As usual, I was on a quest for beekite, an odd form of chalcedony. I found many specimens of both types -- fine, concentric bands and blobby, concentric forms. Named for Henry Beeke, the geologist who first described the structures in the 1800's, there is some thought that the rings are caused by decomposition of organic matter or by coral attachment, but I think more research is needed.

Because of the rainy days before the trip, members had an easy time collecting what they wanted, so we actually finished fairly early and got a good start on our voyages home. Many thanks to the property owners for allowing us access to the collecting areas. Thank you to the members who attended the trip and made for a pleasant and fun day. And many thanks to Charles Carter and Daniel Miller on their efforts to find such a fantastic place to collect and working diligently to get permission from the property owners.

Lori Carter
On behalf of Charles Carter, GMS Field Trip Chair
e-mail:
Photo by Lori Carter

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A pretty botryoidal geode was found before we had our boots on!
Photo by Lori Carter

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This superb horn coral was an early find, too
Photo by Lori Carter

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A trash pick-up volunteer found this unusual faceted glass pendant during creek clean-up
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Volunteers removed 4 bags full of trash!
Photo by Lori Carter

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Geodes everywhere!
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The previous days' deluge exposed more geodes, but did not raise the water level
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Sitting on the gravel and taking time to look was a successful strategy
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It didn't take long to gather a pile of geodes!
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Highly silicified crinoid stem and a nice little brachiopod
Photo by Lori Carter

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Calcite geode
Photo by Lori Carter

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Hematite coated crystals in this geode
Photo by Lori Carter

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Some classic quartz crystal filled geodes.
Great care was taken to keep the many loose double terminated crystals that were inside.
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Cubic quartz
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A fantastic specimen with a horn coral attached to a geode
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Assortment of fossils
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Some weird bits
Photo by Lori Carter

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Beekite!
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Some of my favorite beekite specimens
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Gilligan even found a new friend!

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