Author Topic: Tingha Sands  (Read 5836 times)


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Tingha Sands
« on: February 02, 2009, 02:42:51 PM »
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 or smokey. It is very common for the quartz to contain rutile needles - just a few or almost totally filling the quartz. This is known as rutilised quartz or "grass-stone" and the Tingha area is famous for extremely good examples.

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. Coming from Inverell, when you get to the centre of the Tingha township, turn right onto Howell Rd. 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 67233523). GPS coords are 6683638N 56323648E (WGS84).

[smg id=184 type=preview align=center width=400 caption="Sand Processing Plant"]

[smg id=185 type=preview align=center width=400 caption="Oversize Dumps"]

[smg id=186 type=preview align=center width=400 caption="Rutilised Quartz (photo by Xenolith)"]

[smg id=187 type=preview align=center width=400 caption="Rutilised Quartz (photo by Xenolith)"]
« Last Edit: February 02, 2009, 02:46:04 PM by Rust »

Aussie Sapphire

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Re: Tingha Sands
« Reply #1 on: February 02, 2009, 03:21:38 PM »
I love rutilated quartz and those are some great examples there.

Tingha Sands is a popular spot and easy going.  We are hoping to have this one as a Minerama field trip again this year for those who dont like doing the really hard digging of other spots.

I reiterate what Paul says about being careful when getting close to the machinery.  Just had a fellow here last week who told me how he really enjoyed going to Tingha Sands until a big chunk of rock bounced off the ground into his leg - spent the next half a day in the hospital A&E waiting to be stitched up.  Luckily he realised it was his own fault and didnt make it a problem for the owners.

SAFETY FIRST - stand back and keep your eyes open.  Then you'll have an enjoyable and rewarding fossicking experience.

Another suggestion - when you're passing through Tingha, spare half an hour to visit the local museum.  Just a gold coin donation and definitely worth a visit.  You can see a little more about the Wing Hing Long shop/museum here:

Aussie Sapphire - The Lapidary Warehouse


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