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Author Topic: Fossicking in Scotland  (Read 3608 times)

Bucket

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Fossicking in Scotland
« on: April 19, 2012, 08:17:16 AM »
Hi all,

Here's a new one for those that have travelled there, I'm heading off to the UK (mainly Scotland) and was wondering if anyone had leads on places available to speck while I'm there.  I believe that smokey quartz can be found in the Cairngorms and some agate on the east coast north of Inverness but if anyone else has any ideas I'd be interested.

Should be a big difference to the Kimberleys which I go to later this year.

Garry
Common sense isn't exactly common

Lord_Thunda

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #1 on: April 19, 2012, 10:16:20 AM »
Hi Garry,  beers
Let me know if you do find Cairngorm Quartz as from all things I have read its long gone now  :'(
I have 5 links for you that will be interesting  ;)

http://www.scottishagates.co.uk/14.html
http://devon-minerals.blog.co.uk/2009/06/05/sorry-for-the-gap-in-posting-i-ve-been-6246144/
www.bgs.ac.uk/downloads/start.cfm?id=107
http://www.holyroodpr.co.uk/index.php/coverage/entry/jeweller_draws_up_unique_map_of_precious_scotland
http://www.lapidary.org.uk/links.htm

It may be worthwhile looking along beaches too as a lot of agates can be found  there from what I've been told. Theres a mineral society in Edinburgh that is a wealth of knowledge. Ayrshire region has many coal mines. It really would be easier to show you in person if you'd like a guide tho  :-* I am available  :-[

Bob  beers

Bucket

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2012, 11:03:06 AM »
Thanks Bob, but my cases are full and there are weight limits these days.  I'll have a look at those links you have posted.  The Cairngorm quartz I also heard was hard to find, to say the least and small agates are on the beaches around Montrose (just north of Inverness).
Thanks again, Garry
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Lord_Thunda

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2012, 02:09:19 PM »
Glad to help Garry  ;D Also found another site that shows unique jewellery.

http://www.alistirtaitgem.co.uk/index.html

It shows also how expensive these stones are due mainly to their rarity. Sapphires cant be fossicked for due to protection but they are there in one location on the Isle of Harris.

Bucket

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2012, 12:19:44 PM »
Finally returned to the country yesterday, I was unable to go fossicking for Cairngorm for two reasons - scarce as hens teeth and there was a couple of feet of snow on the ground!  I did get to go for a wander along the beach at Scurdie Ness, just outside Montrose on the east coast and have returned with a few blue agates and other assorted items, mind you it was only 5 degress and rain coming in sideways, so didn't spend long there.

Can't wait for the nest trip now, Darwin across to Broome via the Kimberley, much warmer!

Garry
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Fullerton

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2012, 02:21:41 PM »
Blue agates! Sounds like an interesting trip even if the elements were against you.

mehoose

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2012, 03:19:18 PM »
Oh please tell me you attended the Scottish Gem conference (4th to 7th May). those guys did a field trip.
Keep em comin!!!

Bucket

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Re: Fossicking in Scotland
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2012, 02:07:43 PM »
Sorry to disappoint  'hoose, but while I knew it was on, due to family stuff I couldn't get up there on those dates, mind you I was on down the road in Glasgow.  Apparently the field trip was on the Monday (7th) and was in an area I went through on the Thursday. For those that are interested I'm a bit of a Monty Python fan and did a tour of the film locations for the Holy Grail.  Awsome places, including Doune Castle, Loch Tay and Glen Coe.

I was told by a local that the Cairngorm stone (smokey quartz) basically has to wear out of the rock (mostly granite) and hence is hard to come by.  The only stuff I saw was cut and mounted in older jewellery, quite an interesting colour, sort of cross betweem citrine and pale smokey.

The agate and jasper somes from the basalty stuff and is only generally small, can't wait to start cutting some of it.
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