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2809 Views 4 Replies Last post: Feb 26, 2014 3:53 PM by MikeHardman RSS
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Feb 26, 2014 1:29 PM

Found a plant fossil on some awesome ore. Any Ideas?

So at the gold claim I found this piece. I was going to break the corner off to make it more uniform in shape and to prep for drilling to use as a fountain head. After hitting one time on the top corner it split down the middle and revealed the plant looking fossil and a ton of metal pockets. I believe I have identified natural copper, gold, pyrite and galena as showing on the face.

Looks really cool how it formed almost looks like a moon with a forrest (the fossils) under it. Thanks for the help and expertese I want to make sure its been found before.


Now if only I could figure out what to do with all of this ore this piece is good size 15lbs. The other half (mirror image) weight 26 and there is a mountain of the stuff! I Don't know about more fossil finds but silver and gold prospects are looking good. Near Silver Valley, ID USA


Thanks for the help and expertese,


Gold Ore 022.jpgGold Ore 020.jpgGold Ore 013.jpg

    • Doug,


      The plant fossil is actually a mineral - a dendritic growth, of something such as a manganese oxide.

      and loads of piccies via a Google image search for 'dendrite mineral'.


      I can't see any of your 'copper, gold, pyrite and galena', but it may be smaller than shows in the photo.

      The bluish metallic tinge in the last photo is, however, reminiscent of bornite (a copper ore), and may represent a finely granular occurrence of that, though probably interspersed with non-ore grains.


      The surface that the rock split on was a natural fissure (that's where dendrites form), and there were other processes going on there, resulting in the ferric oxide that probably represents the brown colouration.


      So, on balance, I wouldn't consider your specimen to be particularly interesting. But it is a personal thing. You obviously do, and that's great. Keep looking, and I'm sure you'll find some really nice veins of galena, sphalerite and maybe even some silver (post here if you do!). After all, it is/was a significant mining area.


      I passed through Idaho many years ago (stayed overnight north of Silver Valley, at Bonners Ferry), en route from Calgary to Vancouver (a great drive). It was late summer and the countryside was adorable. I envy you rock-hounding there.






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        • Doug,


          Thanks for the close-ups; now I can see what you mean.

          I think those are both pyrite (notice the brown oxidized rim).

          Bear in mind there are varieties of pyrite other than the typical one; arsenopyrite is silver-coloured, eg.


          As you scout for minerals, keep an eye out for big veins; they can provide some of the best crystals.



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