Petersen Mountain Commercial
Recovery Operation
(Washoe County, Nevada), 2006

2 July, Today during mining we discovered a VERY good scepter pocket!
And the pocket
kept going!
This scepter is 12cm
(5 inches) long with
a perfect tip!
And then it became the BEST scepter pocket of our dig!  Here is a stunning scepter (15cm, 6 inch long), that we pictured while still in the pocket and covered with mud!

The head was 3-times the
width of the stem!
The scepter is in perfect
condition!  Did I say- WOW!!!!!!

2 July, And then Jon comes walking up with this crazy
amethyst scepter!  This is
truly one of the
best pieces so far! 

2 July, And finally, to add to this "day of days" for us, Jon again comes to the rescue and finds this amazing
18cm (7 inch) long scepter!
The total for our
 best day of the dig!!

3 July, The next morning, Ed and Jim Christiansen
came up to visit us, and Ed found this big scepter!

3 July, It was my turn on the luck wheel and I found
a pocket that produced a superb matrix scepter!

3 July, A very hot and windy day of mining.

3 July, Now this is more like it!!  Not a bad
production for the past few days!

4 July, After BBQ'ing up some ribeyes and king crab legs,
we watched our spectacular 4th-of-July sunset!

6 July, This is one of
my favorite pictures
from the dig!!  This will
soon become our largest pocket, measuring roughly 30x40x60cm (12x16x24 inches)!  This picture shows exactly what it looked like, just as we discovered it,
with the pocket's
"recess cavity" perfectly intact!  I was the lucky
dog that first found it, so
I got to collect it!!!
A closeup of the beginning of the pocket, where the loose white quartz
vein is turning into smoky crystals,
just below the
recess cavity!
As I carefully opened
the loose, crystal-filled pocket, it kept getting bigger!!
A closeup picture showing the pocket getting larger, while going down
and into the rock wall!
After pulling off more of the rock footwall, I found a nice 3-pound amethyst head!
Here is a big closeup of the pocket right when it was at it's peak!!!
These closeups show the pocket as it produced a
great scepter (by my hand) and a matrix plate that we were later able to
reconstruct a nice
scepter back onto!  A total
of 6 good scepters and 2
large amethyst heads,
along with numerous
smoky quartz crystals, were ultimately recovered from this pocket.
 The longest smoky was over 20cm
(8 inches), with many being
unusually transparent!
This is the scepter pictured in the pocket above
(by my hand).  It came out perfectly, measuring 10.5cm long (4+ inches), and is doubly-terminated!!  This was the best of THREE, RARE,
double-terminated scepters that the
pocket ultimately produced!
This is the best scepter
from the pocket!  It was
also the best scepter that
I would find during the dig.  
This fatty measures 9.6cm
(almost 4 inches)!
With the pocket almost finished, I hold
a 6-pound amethyst head that I found in 2 pieces.  
It was interesting that there was an 8cm (3+ inch)
gap between these 2 pieces in the pocket, with a
large crystal shoved in-between them!  The doubly-terminated scepter can be seen still in the pocket.
At the very top of the pocket hole, you can see the small notch where the original "recess cavity"
once was!  This is a great picture
to compare to the first in this
pocket series that shows the
intact recess cavity!

6 July, At the very same time that I was diving into my big pocket,
Jon found this pocket with a BIG amethyst scepter in it!

A nice little pocket
that I found.

An angry cloud over
the angry chair!
On the morning of the 8th of July,
I looked north from our camp to see
this curious cloud formation!  It is quite possible that this could have been a
Funnel Cloud (a tornado that didn't touch
the ground) coming out from underneath
the thunderstorm above!  It lasted for
several minutes before dissipating!

8 July, A near full moon
at sunset.

9 July, With the dig coming to an end soon, this will be our last big round of
initial cleaning and sorting.
A table of treasure!

Our last "Museum".
9 July, A doubly-terminated scepter, good candy,
good fortunes!

10 July, This will be our last
full day of commercial digging.  Here is a nice amethyst pocket-
A closeup-

10 July, A decent scepter pocket-
A closeup-

10 July, Another
nice pocket-

10 July, With a big "arm hole" pocket (full of just smokys)
cleaned out on the wall, Jon
finishes up the mining
for this venture.

11 July, Time to tear down
camp and drive the equipment
down the hill.  I can sleep in
REAL beds again!!  We spent a total of 39 days living on the mountain!  Jon put a total of 185 operating hours on the backhoe!

13 July, Sorting and splitting-  This is the culmination of our efforts!  We recovered over 160 good scepters, 13 flats of amethyst,
11 flats of smokys, and 11 flats of "B" grade!  We also found 50 pounds
of smoky quartz facet rough and over 100 pounds of "kiddie rock".  
We all had TONS of fun and I hope Jon will ask me to help him out again!     Thanks Jon!!!   

Minerals for Sale Page

Scott's Mineral Articles

GBM Show Archives Page