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Sunday, March 18, 2012

Rose Quartz near Custer, South Dakota

On a recent trip in mid-August 2011 to the Black Hills area of South Dakota, while out hiking & looking for overlooked pegmatites with my  good friend Ron Keller, we discovered a ledge of gem-quality rose quartz.  It started by seeing some float in a draw and tracing it up to a ledge which was exposed & traceable for several hundred feet.  We also traced the ledge underneath the hill to an exposure on the other side.  We also found black tourmaline (schorl) in association with the rose quartz.  The pegmatite was zoned. Here are a few pictures:

                                                 Rose Quartz exposure.

Close-up of rose quartz exposure.

We did not pick up any specimens as we were unsure as to the land/mining claim status, ownership, etc., so it was "take only pictures, leave only footprints."   Which was a good thing as since that time, we have researched and found the area to be right on the inside of Custer State Park boundaries (where no rock collecting is allowed whatsoever).  However, I have one other area that looks promising to explore before the winter snow comes in......

To close this post, here is a photo of some rose quartz on display at the South Dakota School of Mines & Geology in Rapid City:

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