Aussie Lapidary Forum

Fossicking and Rockhounding => Location of the Month => Topic started by: Wwoofa on September 05, 2015, 11:10:09 AM

Title: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Wwoofa on September 05, 2015, 11:10:09 AM
Well here's the inaugural "Location of the Month". I thought I would start with one of my favourite places to find excellent specimens with very little effort ;D

July's location is Tingha Sands.

Tingha Sands is a company that mines sand from the extensive old tin mining sand dumps on their property. I believe this is the same property as "Chathams" which was a well known fossicking location in the past.

Basically they put the sand thru a machine that washes it and removes the "oversize" material. The oversize contains whole quartz crystals and various broken pieces in a wide range of sizes. The quartz can be clear, citrine or smoky. It is very common for the quartz to contain rutile needles - just a few or almost totally filling the quartz. This is known as rutilated quartz or "Grass Stone" and the Tingha area is famous for extremely good examples. Tin and small sapphires can also be found in the sand.

You can either scratch thru the oversize dumps or sit "under" the washing machine waiting for good bits to drop down .... if you choose the latter be very careful not to get hit in the head! Use some water (available in the dams) to check what you find for quality.

The property is located 4.5km from Tingha on the Howell Rd (431 Howell Rd). Coming from Inverell, when you get to the centre of the Tingha township, turn right onto Howell Rd.  The GPS coords are UTM 6683638N 56323648E (WGS84).

It currently costs $10 per person to fossick. I'm not sure if you can go out on any day so maybe give them a call before arriving (02 6723 3549 or 02 6723 3523). It's also worth checking if the sand washer is operating before you go.

Link to Capt Mendoza's very excellent article ...
http://jewellerypirate.com.au/blog/tingha-sands/ (http://jewellerypirate.com.au/blog/tingha-sands/)

Link to original ALF topic ...
http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=144.0 (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?topic=144.0)

Link to the World of Shiny Stuff ...
http://fossicking.daruthe.com/fossicking.php?type=location&id=64 (http://fossicking.daruthe.com/fossicking.php?type=location&id=64)

Link to Whereis ...
http://www.whereis.com/nsw/tingha-2369/yellowId-13646607 (http://www.whereis.com/nsw/tingha-2369/yellowId-13646607)

Some pictures ...

Sand Processing Plant ...

(http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/gallery/albums/Fossicking_Locations/Dir_1/medium_main_184.JPG) (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view;id=184)


Oversize Dumps ...

(http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/gallery/albums/Fossicking_Locations/Dir_1/medium_main_185.JPG) (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view;id=185)


Rutilised Quartz (photo by Xenolith) ...

(http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/gallery/albums/Fossicking_Locations/Dir_2/medium_main_186.jpg) (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view;id=186)


Rutilised Quartz (photo by Xenolith) ...

(http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/gallery/albums/Fossicking_Locations/Dir_2/medium_main_187.jpg) (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view;id=187)


Some "Glass Stone" (Holbrooks Hot Sauce I think?)  ;D ...

(http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/gallery/albums/Fossicking_Locations/Dir_2/medium_main_2873.jpg) (http://aussielapidaryforum.com/forum/index.php?action=gallery;sa=view;id=2873)

Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Lapis Lupinus on September 05, 2015, 07:04:24 PM
It's a good spot. I got some nice rutilated quartz and terminated smokies there a few years ago (when the machine was running, and no-one else was there to compete with at the machine drop-zone).
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Jimnyjerry on September 05, 2015, 07:57:33 PM
A good idea to ring before you go to make sure they are not processing the fine sands.  You want them processing the lumpy material.  :)
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Wwoofa on September 11, 2015, 12:12:14 PM
I've added a link in the original post to the World of Shiny Stuff :)
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: bjhodgkin on April 20, 2016, 09:41:18 PM
Hey guys,

Has been a while and unfortunately coming back with some bad news. We rang Tingah Sands and they said 'fossicking' while the trommel is working is no longer an option - Not sure of full story but, like lots of things these days, has been stopped due to safety/license reasons.

Its still open to fossicking and still lots to find on the dumps I'm sure - I'll still be going.

Rob

Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: bjhodgkin on April 20, 2016, 09:42:27 PM
ps - its only the catching crystals under the trommel which has been stopped, not the specking and digging on old piles, away from working areas.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: soccermum on September 28, 2016, 09:31:38 AM
Hi All yes I can confirm that you are no longer allowed to stand under the goodie chute as apparently some people stood too close and were hit on the head...such a shame as I loved the fun of hearing the plop plop plop of the goodies came out. We spent the day there yesterday digging around on the heaps and found some lovely specimens...very sore muscles today but well worth while.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Gemster on September 28, 2016, 10:05:34 AM
I heard somebody nearly lost an Eye ::) But at least you can still dig in the piles.....
 Glad you found some Goodies :D

     Gemster..... beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Jimnyjerry on September 28, 2016, 10:06:36 AM
Never were allowed to stand under the chute. Just had to have a hard hat on ones head and a long handled shovel to scoop up the dropped crystals.

The terminally stupid have wiped out another easy way to collect crystals. >:(
Only thing we had to worry about used to be keeping up the sunscreen hotthirsty
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Gemster on September 28, 2016, 06:33:08 PM
Apparently She reached in and a piece of Quartz 'Bounced' off the pile into her Eye.... A Fluke Shot as they say ::), but it stopped a great pastime....
    Gotta love OH&S...For Overly Hopeless and Stupid People ;) ;D

   Gemster.... beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: soccermum on September 30, 2016, 07:30:45 AM
It is such a shame...I love the acronym Gemster...yet another step towards a bubble wrap society. Still, we can be grateful that we have been fortunate enough to have enjoyed the experience!
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: RockSpectre on October 19, 2016, 05:46:37 PM
my husband n i went there last year. spent approx 4 hours there.  chose the wrong heap. note make sure the dirt is easy to dig not Rock hard. trying to dig through cement like sand gets one nowhere. i did leave with some nice smoky quartz. plan to go back there this year. now that i have more proper tools. trying to use a Small hammer n pick dont work. believe me. my fossicking kit comprises a small ball hammer, mallet/pick. two shovels. sieves n gloves. also heaps of Jarrah coffee containers. just the right size for dropping smaller specimens into. if one doesnt mind the coffee smell.  ;D
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Jimnyjerry on October 20, 2016, 07:10:57 AM
Some of the heaps at Tingha Sands are certainly cemented in.
Still found specking them good. Just had to make sure I dug some footholds so I did not fall of the heaps.  ;D

I tend to use a bucket while collecting and plastic containers for storing the finds. Glass jars have a habit of breaking for me.

Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: starsapphire78 on November 21, 2016, 02:42:51 PM
 Once again a few bad word idiots have ruined it for those  who have common sense
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Dragonfly on January 15, 2017, 06:13:37 PM
So sad to hear about Tinga. Some people should not be allowed out on a fossicking site.

Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Gemster on January 15, 2017, 06:45:14 PM
You can still fossick at Tingha Sands.. :D  But NOT under or near the plant anymore :(  Plenty of piles to choose from....  ;D

   Gemster.... beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: wallie on August 22, 2017, 10:35:07 AM
Visited Tingha last week and found plenty of smoky quartz. The piles were all damp from recent rain and fairly easy to dig but if you waited for the bulldozer to create a new mound the stones were very easy to find and collect. $10 is well worth it I would have thought. Interesting to see some of the workers collecting stones from the drop zone and then pass them out to some of the fossickers...a nice touch.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: starsapphire78 on August 22, 2017, 04:26:00 PM
That was a nice touch
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Chiron52 on August 24, 2017, 08:06:23 PM
Well done Wallie. The "boss" and I are heading to Tingha in October and we hope to find a few smokies too.
Thanks for the post mate.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Ranger Itchy on March 30, 2018, 05:33:51 AM
Hi Guys,


Heading to Tingha in 4 days, does anybody know that Tingha sands is still allowing fossickers in?? and is it still $10 a day?? 


Cheers Ranger Itchy beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: bak on April 01, 2018, 09:37:38 AM
I've read in a few places it was closed as of 30/4.  We are still planning on a couple of nights there next week but no idea where to go if the mine is closed.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Ranger Itchy on April 02, 2018, 07:16:39 AM
Can you tell me where you read about Tingha Sands closing??


I am due to leave Melbourne tonight to drive to Tingha but it may be pointless or wasted trip if Tingha Sands is already closed or not allowing fossickers in anymore!!


Cheers Ranger Itchy beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Aussie Sapphire on April 02, 2018, 07:33:43 AM
Can you tell me where you read about Tingha Sands closing??

I am due to leave Melbourne tonight to drive to Tingha but it may be pointless or wasted trip if Tingha Sands is already closed or not allowing fossickers in anymore!!

I heard it from a customer.  I heard from that bloke that his wife/kids do not want to allow fossickers anymore - he had visited about a month ago in their last week of operation.  But heard from someone else since that there is a complication with permission to mine sand (possible native title issue) and this was reason - they were hoping to get it sorted but had not happened yet.  I think you may be able to get access to fossick but as they are not mining, there are no big sand heaps to go through.

Cannot really vouch for any of this - was just what I heard.  Best to call them directly and ask or contact visitor information centre in Inverell.

cheers
Leah
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: bak on April 02, 2018, 11:13:11 AM
I sent a message to the Inverell info centre last night.  sent at 10pm and got a reply about 10mins later :-) they said the mine is not operating but you can still fossick at the site.  They also said there are sites at Stannifer for fossicking for crystals. 

Brett


Can you tell me where you read about Tingha Sands closing??


I am due to leave Melbourne tonight to drive to Tingha but it may be pointless or wasted trip if Tingha Sands is already closed or not allowing fossickers in anymore!!


Cheers Ranger Itchy beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: colza on April 02, 2018, 04:52:43 PM
Well that's good news.
Cheers,
colza
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: fossicker on March 12, 2019, 01:34:09 PM
Tinga sands is closed for fossicking, checked it out personally on the weekend. Regards all
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands Closed
Post by: Jimnyjerry on May 01, 2019, 09:07:14 AM
Following was posted on another Forum
Hi All, We are the new owners of Tingha Sands since End August 2018. We do not allow fossicking at all. Insurance costs are astronomical for that type of business. I have had hundreds of phone calls and majority are very understanding, but we do not appreciate the attitude of some people when told no fossicking and they constantly question our decision and get angry with us. We standby our decision For NO FOSSICKING. We are concentrating on making the sand business work for us.
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Aussie Sapphire on May 01, 2019, 04:06:10 PM
Owners at Tingha Sands have been quite definite about this decision and putting it out there as much as they can.  I can appreciate that this is disappointing for fossickers but it is their right to make this decision.


Suggest people wanting to look for quartz in the Tingha area contact the people at the Tingha Caravan Park - those guys are very helpful and can point you in the right direction for spots to look, etc.


http://www.tinghagems.com/home.html (http://www.tinghagems.com/home.html)


Cheers
Leah

Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Jimnyjerry on May 01, 2019, 05:53:25 PM
Good post Leah   :) beers
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: tunneler on May 02, 2019, 04:31:16 PM
Shaun at Jelly Bean Junction Stannifer has good info and maps for finding Crystals in the Stannifer area. Top bloke always willing to help the fossicker.  :)
Title: Re: NSW - Tingha Sands
Post by: Tailor marc on May 09, 2019, 01:29:18 PM
wish we had many spots close to Perth and people were so helpful. Everything is kept so hush. I know of about 5 good spots within 400klm and it took blood sweat and tears to find