Mining at the Mt. Mica, Orchard and GE Quarries
Oxford County, Maine

Coromoto Minerals
The 2004 Season at Mt. Mica
----  June Page 2 -----

 Large elbaite from pocket 10
Large elbaite with rusty cleavelandite photographed in the shade from a hard hat in pocket MMP10-04

As mentioned in the previous page, we were beginning to get the notion that we were dealing nowPocket zone Mt. Mica June 2004 with a pocket zone or system. Every few feet there was another vug with at least some green elbaite. All of these vugs were armored with tenacious lepidolite that was nearly impossible to chisel away. Most of these pockets contained a few chunks of badly etched near colorless cesian beryl. A redeeming factor though was that many of these remnants were quite gemmy. ( In the image, the Dagenais pocket can be seen to the left. Pocket 9 has been completely removed; pocket 7 can be seen mucked in at the right. Several vugs are exposed in the middle within the rusty band. The very rusty joint is just below the spot were our blowpipe had ejected MMP10-4 after just being openedtourmalines. The swelling of the garnet 'line' can be seen all along this area as the speckled area just above the water.) 

We had couple more feet of the pegmatite to work before we once again were required to do the 'heavy lifting' of overburden removal. These couple of feet though would expose what our blow piping had been hinting at. So after placing holes on either side of the hole we blow piped and loading them lightly, we blasted the ledge. Pocket 10 was exposed. This pocket was somewhat different then the others we had encountered down dip to this point from the Dagenais. There was little of the lepidolite hard coat but a lot of well crystallized microcline. In the image at the top of the page a microcline crystal is visible behind the hat. After setting up our water pump connected to our garden hose, our primary pocket digging tool, we immediately began to expose very large elbaite crystals in a bed of golden cookeite and cleavelandite. At the left Mary and Richard pose in front of the pocket. Pocket MMP7-04 is visible to the right.  Between them are two large elbaites laying in cookeite. This pocket was just at the base of the smooth rusty surface in the photo above.   Although this pocket had several large tourmalines, it had few if any small ones.  The largest tourmaline was more than 38 cm long. It was a  color zoned tourmaline, green at the termination passing through colorless, red and finally into blue black. The smaller elbaite was also color zoned and had some fine gemmy sections.

Large tourmalines
Large but shattered elbaites in pocket MMP10-04

Gemmy elbaite from MMP10-4

Gemmy elbaite sections from pocket MMP10-04
Color zoned elbaite fragment from MMP10-04
A color zoned elbaite fragment from MMP10-04
Note the cookeite coating
Large complete elbaite from MMP10-04
Another view of the tourmaline at the top of
the page

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June 2000 Beryl Group