On arrival the location does not look like a typical mineral collecting site. There are not any rocks to be seen. The GPS coordinates provided by Beard (2013) are smack in the middle of a cultivated field filled with small evergreen trees just off Fruitville Pike in Lancaster, PA. The field is flanked on two sides by subdivision housing and on a third side by a pair of little league baseball fields. Your first thought is that you botched the directions. Continue reading
On occasion, cleaning out that old box of leftover and generally forgotten minerals from a past trip can provide an unexpected reward. Last month I uncovered a box of rather ordinary wavellite specimens from the club visit to Mount Pleasant Mills, PA in April of 2016. Among the cruddy and generally less than desirable wavellite discards I found a fossil gastropod that I had remembered collecting, but had pretty much forgotten. It was time to clean it up and do a little research. After all, that is what the winter months are for in western New York.
The end of April was an active and exciting period for Wayne County Gem and Mineral Club diggers with two trips, each of three days duration. While we wait for warmer weather to our north, the club ventured to the neighboring states to our south, New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
Pennsylvania and the Limestone Products Quarries in Mt. Pleasant Mills and Middlebury beckoned a number of Wayne County Gem and Mineral Club collectors south for May Day. The day started with the annual dig atop the quarry collecting wavellite. As the cover photo suggests, we dug high, low, left, and right in the third cut atop the hill, but unfortunately we were not as successful as in past years. Lots of color but not many full balls and none of the deep green the Buffalo Club had on display at its show in March. We probably did not dig deeply enough to deserve quality pieces. But, yes, that is Jerry Donahue in the middle of the photo with his sampling tool. It was great to see him back in the field with us.
Article I wrote for “Site of the Month” in May 2014 WCGMC News
Technically, Mount Pleasant Mills is not in New York, but I am going to claim editor’s license to divert this month’s “Site of the Month” south of the border and to invoke multiple sites. You see, on April 12th and 13th, thirteen Wayne County Club members gathered up their passports and headed south across the border in search of warmer weather and mineral/fossil treasure. We found both!
With temperatures well into the 70’s, the group converged on National Limestone Quarry in Mount Pleasant Mills where we were cheerfully greeted by the quarry owner Eric Stahl, who had cleared the road to the ridge atop the quarry in anticipation of our visit. Up we went, backing in the final section until we were all lined up adjacent to one of the wavellite spots atop the hill and collecting commenced (see cover photo).