Eastern Sierra Field Trip Saturday, May 15th, 2021

Forsaking the desert, we’ll head deep into the forests of the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The PLS May field trip will be to the Obsidian Dome area where we will study the products of volcanic activity near Mammoth Lakes, CA. Geologically speaking, this volcanic activity is thought to have occurred fairly recently in the summer of 1350AD. This is a one day trip.

We will start at Obsidian Dome–a plateau with some small hills on top, littered with various sized pieces of obsidian. Most of the obsidian pieces at the Dome have tiny gas bubbles and aren’t gem quality but the shiny glass pieces almost glow in the morning sun.  

We’ll head to Crowley Lake after touring the Dome to look for fist size chunks of obsidian and arrowheads in the hills overlooking the reservoir.

After that, we’ll stop at Hot Creek visitor center, visit the free hot tubs in the area and hopefully explore some mine tailings looking for minerals related to gold mining.

High clearance is recommended for this trip.

For more information, please contact Rex at rexch8@yahoo.com.  Please put “Obsidian Dome field trip” in your subject line.

A Geologic Tour of Australia, via Zoom, is featured presentation for Tues., May 18 Program Meeting; 6:30 p.m.

Image from ga.gov.au

Join us for our May 18 Program Meeting as we explore Australia’s most iconic natural wonders and visit several geologic sites that are unfamiliar to most people. Our guests, Dick & Mary Pat Weber, are retired exploration geologists and will take us on the armchair trip. In 2007 and 2008 they spent a year on what they refer to as their “Rocks ‘n Crocs” tour of Australia looking at and photographing the natural features and geology of the largest country in Oceania.

Andradite garnet: Green andradite garnet of the demantoid variety on a matrix of marble. This specimen is about 8.9 x 6.5 x 4.8 centimeters in size and was collected in Antsiranana Province, Madagascar. Garnets formed within marble often have excellent crystal form and are of very high quality. Specimen and photo by Arkenstone / www.iRocks.com.

For our May Rock of the Month talk, Mary Pat Weber will present an introduction to a lesser known member of the garnet family, the rare and highly prized green garnet, which gives emerald a run for its money.

The Tuesday, May 18 program meeting starts at 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. To join us, send an email to joenmar1[at]verizon.net in advance, using ‘PROGRAM MEETING’ in subject line, and request the Zoom meeting link. We hope to “see” you there!

Rock Show Coming to Apple Valley

Gem & Mineral show at Town’s End ‘The Market’, June 4-5

Yes, there really is going to be an actual gem & mineral show, which one can attend IN PERSON, coming next month to the Inland Empire. IT IS NOT Pasadena Lapidary Society’s show (ours is planned for August), but we wanted to share the news about this show merely For The Love of Rocks!!! So, if you want to get out of town on Friday or Saturday, June 4/5, this show will be held at Town’s End ‘The Market’ in Apple Valley. Check out the image below for more info.

Where’s Apple Valley, you might ask? It’s a couple of hours, give or take, from Pasadena. In a nutshell, take the 210 East (toward San Bernardino), to the I-15 North (toward Barstow), then exit for CA-18 toward Apple Valley. Note the address in the bottom left corner of the image above for event location. Keep in mind, the gem and mineral show is a FREE event. The tickets mentioned toward the bottom of image are for a concert.

April 16-17, 2021 Field Trip to Tecopa/Sperry Wash

We’ll be rock hunting near Sperry Wash in Tecopa, CA on Friday and Saturday, April 16 and 17. We’ll camp out on Thursday and Friday nights. Saturday night camping is optional . A high clearance (SUV or pickup truck) is required for this trip.   

There will be plenty of variety on this trip, as we’re searching for amethyst, precious opal, fossils, and palm root agate. Please RSVP to Rex at rexch8@yahoo.com for updates and additional information.

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Check out our latest new find! A most unusual pattern of Sperry Wash Jasper
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Tecopa fire opal

Obsidian Featured Presentation for Tuesday, April 20, 2021 Program Meeting; 6:30 p.m.

Obsidian is a popular lapidary material to collect and cut. Join Pasadena Lapidary Society at the April general meeting, as lapidary artist Terry Wilson takes us on a virtual trip to Davis Creek and other obsidian collecting locations, updating us on collecting site regulations. Terry will share tips on how to inspect the obsidian in the field and back at home. She will also demonstrate how to line up, slab and cab the material to bring out the best of their unique optical properties, including how to cut a cab exhibiting the cat-eye effect.

Obsidian with Silver sheen banding.
Snowflake Obsidian

The April Rock of the Month will be presented by geologist, Dick Weber.  Dick will take us on a tour of a hidden treasure: the Petrified Wood museum of Nebraska.

Join us virtually for the April 20 Tuesday night meeting by RSVPing to joenmar1[at]verizon.net for a Zoom meeting link, using ‘PROGRAM MEETING’ in subject line.

March 13 Sidewinder/Ord Mtn fieldtrip

Attendees of Pasadena Lapidary Society’s fieldtrip of Saturday, March 13 collected tricolor marble from the Sidewinder Mtn area and copper minerals from Ord Mountain.

Chrysocolla on quartz found vicinity of Ord Mtn.
Malachite on Cuprite and Quartz


Parked and ready to rock(hound). Vicinity of Ord Mountain.

Old mine shaft; Ord Mountain.

Careful collecting on hillside; Ord Mtn area.

Explore the Geologic Diversity of New Zealand; Virtual Program Meeting March 16, 2021, 6:30 pm

Glacial deposits: moraines of till and moraine-dammed lakes; glacial erosion, U-shaped valley and glacial horn and arete (Aoraki / Mount Cook in background). geologictimepics.com

Pasadena Lapidary Society’s Tuesday, March 16 program meeting will feature geologists Dick and Mary Pat Weber, whose presentation will focus on the geological wonder of New Zealand. From volcanoes to glaciers, caves and fjords, finding so much variety of terrain in such a small geographical area would be impossible anywhere else on Earth.

Paparoa National Park; NewZealand.com

The Webers are exploration geologists who spent a month in 2007 visiting every corner of this tiny island nation; they have worked and travelled extensively in North America, Australia and New Zealand.

Ferdinand von Hochstetter’s map of the Auckland volcanic field (1859); Wikipedia

Our program meeting will also feature the Rock of the Month, by PLS member David Lacey, whose presentations are always informative.

Interested in joining us virtually for Tuesday night’s meeting? Then RSVP to joenmar1[at]verizon.net for a Zoom meeting link, using ‘PROGRAM MEETING’ in subject line.

March 13, 2021 Field Trip to Sidewinder/Ord Mountain

March’s field trip will be a return to the Sidewinder Mountains.  High clearance or short wheelbase vehicles are recommended for this trip. 2wd is okay. Those with passenger vehicles might need to be shuttled when we get close to the collecting sites. We’ll be searching for both tri-color marble (pictured above) and blue marble.  Tri-color marble is a beautiful green, black, and white material and is perfect for yard rock and spheres.  It’s also a good beginner material for making cabochons. We’ll also explore tailings piles in the Ord Mountains for chrysocolla and malachite.  copper minerals

Our last stop will be to the Prime Cut Rock Show in Lucerne Valley.

Please email Rex at rexch8@yahoo.com for updates and additional information.

Focus on Ametrine for Tuesday, February 16th

Join us for our next virtual general meeting on Tuesday, February 16th. We will be joined by our friend, Professor George R. Rossman. Professor Rossman will highlight the troubled history of Ametrine. Specifically, he will discuss the controversy that developed about ametrine early on, and his personal experience traveling to Brazil amethyst mines, the Bolivia ametrine mine, and Russia where synthetic ametrine was produced. RSVP to joenmar1[at]verizon.net for a Zoom meeting link, using ‘AMETRINE’ in subject line.

The Rock of the Month will be presented by PLS member Phil Lahr, who will discuss “Tumbling through the Pandemic” – a personal journey of rock tumbling triumphs and tragedies during the summer of 2020.

Lavic Siding February 13th, 2021

Miles from Pasadena, about a third of the way between Barstow and Needles, is the sleepy town of Ludlow, CA.  Most of the time, people never even notice it’s there, unaware that a well known jasper collecting area beckons in the blistering desert heat.  Such is Ludlow most of the year. 

Ludlow in the dead of winter is totally different. The ground is stripped of vegetation, blown away as tumbleweeds, or consumed by moisture-loving denizens of shifting desert sands.  The barren landscape causes the jasper to magically appear on the desert floor waiting for us to pick it up.  February’s trip will be on Saturday the 13th, to the renowned Lavic Railroad Siding jasper location near Ludlow, CA.  Our meetup spot is 148 miles from Pasadena.  We’ll meet there at 9 AM. Late arrivals will miss the fieldtrip. Read on for further information.

All colors, shapes, sizes of jaspers and agates cover the ground at Lavic Siding.

Since this is a semi-local trip, it will be for one day only.  We’ll explore the traditional Lavic Jasper collecting areas and the brindle jasper location in the foothills north of Ludlow.  

A high clearance vehicle is required for this trip, but 4wd is always better. Attendees will need to sign a waiver of liability.   RSVP is required.  Please email rexch8[at]yahoo.com for directions, inserting LAVIC FIELDTRIP in the subject field of your email.

Red, ochre, brown, black… jaspers, agates… one in back has some drusy.. all found in the vicinity of Lavic Siding.