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March-April 2018

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Thirty-Three Years of Mineral Collecting at Folsom Gulch, Center Ossipee, Carroll County, New Hampshire

Folsom Gulch, also known as Raccoon Gulch or “the Gulch,” is a well-known mineral collecting locality located in the southeast corner of the Ossipee Mountains. The Gulch is a box canyon running north to south, 10–20 meters deep and 100 meters inside a geologic feature called the Ossipee ring dike. It is characterized by near-vertical ledges and talus slopes. There is a seasonal stream that runs through it with a small waterfall at the north end. The digging areas are located on both sides of the ravine, with most of the miarolitic cavities and seams occurring near the top of the ravine, just below the dirt and clay erosional surface. Digging requires either power tools or hand tools such as hammers, chisels, and pry bars, as the rock varies from solid ledge to disintegrated rock in texture, and access is through exploiting joints and fractures. Moving solid rock is hard work, but good crystal finds are also made just by digging in the talus slopes below the ledges.

 

Jonathan Herndon has been an ardent field collector for thirty-three years, is past president of both the Capital Mineral Club (Concord, New Hampshire) and the Saco Valley Gem and Mineral Club (Conroy, New Hampshire), and owns “the Gulch.”

Eric S. Greene is president of www.TreasureMountainMining.com, an Internet mineral dealership specializing in fine mineral specimens. He is an active field collector and a past president of the Keene, New Hampshire Mineral Club.

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