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Hello all,

On Sunday Z-man, his 8 year old sister Alannah and I headed for some dry lake beds here in N.M. We had a blast while hunting together. Zaya also taught his sister a thing or two about hunting meteorites. He taught her what to look for, how to use a magnet cane and how to take your time and be patient. It was Alannah's first ever meteorite hunt. Although we did not find anything, we still had a great adventure. It was very hot during our hunt but we had plenty of cold drinks and great company!

A few of the lake beds have a very very high salt content. Does any one think meteorites would survive in these conditions and for how long might they? I did find an old railroad spike on top of the ground far from the lakes which was very corroded to almost nothing. I am use to finding them both under the ground and on top but they are no where near the condition of deterioration of this one. The ground surrounding the lakes must also contain a very high content of salt.

Enjoy the pictures!

Zaya and Alannah think about meteorites

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Zaya gives Alannah a lesson

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Zaya searches, can you see the salt in the back ground?

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On the hunt

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Searching hard!!!

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Getting ready for lake number 2

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Thanks all, we had a blast hunting these dry lake beds!

Dean

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Stay away from the high salt content. You are right, it terrestrializes them fast and breaks down the native iron in them.

[Erik]

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Hi Dean,

Those playas arew pretty good sized, enough for a lot of search time. Is the salt deposited out on the edges too? The "shore" hunting won't be that great if the meteorites are oxidized by salt. Say hi to the Z Man for me and Erik.

Ben

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Guest bedrock bob
Hi Dean,

Those playas arew pretty good sized, enough for a lot of search time. Is the salt deposited out on the edges too? The "shore" hunting won't be that great if the meteorites are oxidized by salt. Say hi to the Z Man for me and Erik.

Ben

Dean,

It looks like we think the same. I was probably about 5 miles from you when you snapped those photos. Those lake beds and the ancient ground extend sixty miles north and south and 35 miles wide.

The ancient indians mined salt there for a millenium. That salt bed is why there are a dozen ancient cities over there. The playas are very corrosive, and standing in water three months out of the year. They say they have been there since the plestiocene era or some darn thing. A long time anyway.

The high ground is as old as the playa and is nearly as barren of pebbles and stones. Look for the blowouts and keep an eye out for the cave man tools and chippings. When you locate these you are in a deflation that is uncovering OLD ground. My advice is to go three miles south of where you were at and start a southward search from there. But then what do I know about it?

I didnt find a meteorite either. I will show you what I did find the next time we meet!

Bedrock Bob

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Dean it sounds like you guys had fun out there and thats what this is all about!

Sheesh Bob... your a research machine! Keep at it man because it sounds like you've learned what type of ground is favorable for preserving meteorites.

I don't know if you guys have researched what's been found in Roosevelt county yet... I think if I we're in New Mexico I'd probably start there.

Good luck!

Del

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Dean it sounds like you guys had fun out there and thats what this is all about!

Sheesh Bob... your a research machine! Keep at it man because it sounds like you've learned what type of ground is favorable for preserving meteorites.

I don't know if you guys have researched what's been found in Roosevelt county yet... I think if I we're in New Mexico I'd probably start there.

Good luck!

Del

I've been out there a few times. Mostly just putzing around.

Nasty stuff when the wind blows it up into your eyes!

I always though it was Alkaline, not just salt.

Not being a chemist, I don't know what Alkaline does to metals.

I know it's the opposite of Acid and Jacks it up.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Playa

If you use a house hold cleaner that contain a alkali on Aluminum you will watch it go away before your eyes!

On Iron, Nickel it seems to be much less effect.

I can not find any place on the net that if has a effect on Iron, Nickel compositions.

Bottom Line! They May Be There!

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Bottom Line! They May Be There!

Well lets see... according to the Meteoritical Societies database there is 109 classified meteorites from Roosevelt County New Mexico. The latest classification was an L6 chondrite classified in 2005... so I'm sure there's probably a lot more meteorites to find out there.

Del

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Aloha Dean,

Looks like it was a family adventure this time around. Isn't it funny that kids usually learn faster from other kids. Must be their competitive nature I guess. Soon they will be asking for their own Metal Detectors and ATV's and who knows what else. You had better watch out or you may create two little monster meteorite hunters. :laught16::laught16:

Great to see you are getting them interested in something other than video games. Good job!

Aloha and be safe out there.

Stan aka Kaimi

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Guest bedrock bob
Would the mineral gypsum be considered corrosive to meteorites? When most people think of salt- they usually refer to the one that has the composition NaCl.

Steve

Gypsum...Funny you should mention that. We have the biggest pile of that stuff in the world. Hundreds of square miles of pure gypsum sand 30 feet deep. I worked for many years in it. It is corrosive. Anything that lowers or raises the Ph will dissolve metals to one extent or the other. Gypsum is not that bad relative to salt or potash. Problem is that the gypsum has a habit of growing on things, encrusting them until they are all glistening white or light pink. Like a limey old hard water stain. All rocks, sticks, garbage, lizards, snakes and birds turn white suddenly. It is wet down inside the dunes and in the hard packed stratas. The gypsum holds water and if something is buried more than 4" or so it would rust badly. The playas are deflating though and there are many small rocks scattered about. I bet there are a bunch of meteorites out there.

NASA has an alternate landing site for the space shuttle there. Three square miles of absolutely level, polished gypsum. I had a crew that did nothing but drive big finishing machines over that surface every day. After the space shuttle crash and I got interested in finding things that fell from the sky (that coincidentally had landed on this same surface several years before) I hunted the edges of the strip for the stones the finishing machines had swept aside. I did not find any meteorites, but I suddenly realized that there could be no more perfect spot to find one. Maybe not right in the dunes but in the deflation areas ahead of them, and on large man made, maintained surfaces.

The whole big wonder of the world is completely behind one of the most secure areas on the entire planet. Lots of fellows who work there have found a lot of cool stuff. I hope that there is someone who is working there now that knows how to recognize a meteorite. The last year I was there I was just realizing what the heck was going on with meteorites. I never really got the chance to play that one out.

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Gypsum...Funny you should mention that. We have the biggest pile of that stuff in the world. Hundreds of square miles of pure gypsum sand 30 feet deep.

That's why I thought that area might have potential for finding meteorites but apparently not. Not only is it somewhat corrosive but it's also off limits.

Steve

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Hello all,

Erik and Ben, how are you guys doing? I have been wanting to hunt this area for along time. We finally made it out but was wondering about the salt content. Maybe a few miles away from this area might be a bit better. Guys I will tell Zaya Z-man hi for you. Hey by the way, if we had you guys here with your Eagle eyes I am sure we would find some!!

Bob, how goes it? We need to get together and hunt again. That area we were in is very interesting to say the least. We need to find access to get a couple 4-wheelers in for some good scouting. Can't wait to see your finds. Give me a call.

Homefire, that is a huge area. I still think it holds potential for some meteorites. Your right, they will be there we just need to learn the area a little better.

Del, how goes it? We had a blast out there for sure. The kiddos love it!! I can not imagine starting in this hobby at Z-mans age of 6 1/2 years old!! Z-man already has Glorieta and Holbrook finds under his belt. He asks me everytime he sees me when we are going. Roosevelt County...Yeah I pass through the area quit often and what do you think I am thinking about. Yeah you guessed it meteorites. I will eventually make it out there for some hunts and I will take Mr Research (Bob) along with me for sure. Every time I hunt with him I make a find or two! He brings good luck and great company to the hunts. Along with Roosevelt we have many other falls and finds here. Like most of us it is finding the time to go that is the hard part.

Steve, how are you? Bob has told me some stories about the area he mentions. Very interesting. I think the area we are looking at has some potential for sure.

Stan, hello how are you? The kiddos do learn fast. In fact now days when Zaya goes with me he picks the areas which he thinks we might find meteorites. Ha ha, he has been asking for an ATV now for awhile. He tells me when we find a nice piece we can sell it and buy him one! Oh and metal detectors, he uses my GMT and is getting very use to it. He wants his own now of course. We go every chance we get, your right it sure does beat the tube and the video games. Thanks Stan!

Dean

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