Jump to content
Nugget Shooter Forums

Hello from California...


Recommended Posts

Hi everyone,

My name is Simon and I am glad to be part of the forum. I am 17 years old, live in San Francisco, and am currently a Junior in high school. My hobbies include coin collecting, camping and hiking, fossil collecting, astronomy, and soon hopefully meteorite hunting. So far I have 2 small pieces (attached photos) that I found by chance a few years back a few hours north.

At the end of senior year I will be embarking on my "senior project", which is a month-long project in which students do something educational that interests them. Even though it is a year away I have already set my mind on meteorite hunting. I am not trying to find "the big one", in fact I'm not going for monetary profit at all. I just want to find some cool space rocks.

Since I have never actually hunted before, I signed up in this forum to make connections and learn the ins and outs. So I have a few questions.

1) What would the best environment be for searching? (dry lake bed, desert, etc) Are there any popular spots in california? (Travel is not a problem, I have a whole month for the project)

2) Are there group hunts? If so, is it better to go with a group or go solo?

3) What do you think the most important advice for an amateur hunter would be?

Thanks once again, happy hunting to all. (Also happy thanksgiving)

Simon

post-25896-0-75040700-1322164438_thumb.j

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Aloha Simon and welcome to the forum.

You have made a good choice in coming to this forum. There are a bunch of top notch hunters always willing to help a newbie. Just dont expect to get any gps coords to our finds tho. :brows: All kidding aside you might want to invest in a couple of books on meteorites. Spend some time browsing thru the past posts and you will get a complete list of books you really should get your hands on to gain some excellent knowledge and insight into this hobby and always ask a bunch of questions if you are not sure.

Do you intend on using a metal detector and if so what type are you using?

Good luck hunting and stay safe out there.

Aloha,

Stan aka Ka'imi (pronounced ka e me)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks for your response...

I'm not expecting exact locations/gps coordinates at all, so no worries about that. Just wondering about general areas that are popular for searching.

I will definitely look into some books, I have been doing a lot of research but extra sources don't hurt.

As for the metal detector, that was a question I forgot to include. In dry lake beds and deserts, are metal detectors a worthwhile investment, or will a pole with a rare-earth magnet suffice? Sorry to ask so many questions right off the bat, I tend to get excited about this kind of thing.... :zapped:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Greetings Simon, its exciting to see someone your age showing an interest in this subject.

Heres a link for you to investigate

http://www.lpi.usra....States&srt=name

This link will show you a list of California meteorites and give you the details about them and some photos to get familiar with what they look like.

You can go thru the list and find some that may be close to where you live giving you the opportunity to visit the areas and do some hunting.

Explore the link and you will learn more about meteorites.

As far as metal detectors go, YEAH they're great for finding meteorites.

I have found hundreds with metal detectors.

BUT NOT all metal detectors will do this.

A couple great detectors that can be found on the used market that will easily detect meteorites would be the Fisher Gold Bug 2 and Whites Electronics GMT.

These 2 detectors have enough power and sensitivity to do a good job for you and they are also dedicated gold nugget detectors.

They are not cheap usually they can be found for sale in the 3 to 5 hundred dollar range.

If you have a sharp eye , and I think you do !!! Keep looking at " for sale" ads and yard sales every week and you quite possibly can find one for a real bargain price ( like 1/2 or less)

It may take many months to find a real deal on one but its worth the wait, meanwhile it gives you a chance to save your money and also research the detectors online to get familiar with them.

There are other detectors that can be used for the purpose also, You would have to test them with a sample meteorite before deciding on buying them first.

These other models could be less expensive also.

A cane or stick with a magnet on it will do it also and as your interest grows then graduate to a metal detector.

Sometimes you can find a telescoping extension rod like the kind that is used for a "swiffer" dusting wand it is collapsable and you can mount a good quality rare earth magnet to it then have the ability to extend it to fit your height and collapse it to pack it away in your gear bag.

You might find one at a yard sale or in a dumpster !!!!

If not a stick will do.

Desert hunting and dry lake beds is probably the best senerio because of the easy to spot color differences in contrast to the ground/rock debris , and also not much growth in plants etc. that can cover the ground hiding what lies there.

Important advise for a beginner hunter, Be prepared, pack more than you need for supplies and water, stay hydrated, always keep yer eyes open for snakes 2 legged included. Whenever possible bring a buddy 2 can face a problem that arises better than 1.

Don't forget yer magnet stick or detector an batteries.

MOST OF ALL,...........PERSERVERANCE.

Good Luck kiddo an keep readin an researchin, its the next best thing to hunting in the field !!!

Frank C.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simon, Welcome to the forum! There is a great deal of information here and as mentioned, go back through and read some of the earlier posts. As Frank already stated, dry lake hunting is easier then swinging a metal detector. The reason for a detector is if you know it's a strewn field, meteorites are being found with them, and there is a good chance of finding them again. Not all meteorites sound off on a detector, and it's pretty easy to start just by using a magnet cane. Here is a list of publications that may help in you endeavors:

- Cambridge Encyclopedia of Meteorites, O Richard Norton, 2002, Cambridge Press, 354 pg

Good information that is well organized by the master

- Field Guide to Meteors and Meteorites, O Richard Norton, 2008 Springer, 288 pg

Great reference from classifications to hunting to hand lens/microscope viewing

- Rocks From Space, O Richard Norton, 1994, 1998 Mountain Press Pub, 444 pg

One of my favorite books, one to which I often return

- Meteorites, Hutchison & Graham, 1993 Sterling Publishing, NY, 60 pg

Good pictures and information, I donate copies to science classes I visit

- Falling Stars, Mike Reynolds, 2001 Stackpole Books, PA, 148 pg

Like the subtitle says, its a Guide to Meteors and Meteorites

- Meteorites - Their Impact on Science and History, edited by Zanda & Rotaru, 1996 Cambridge University Press, 128 pg

Great color pictures, very informative

- Meteorites, Alain Carion, self-published, 36 pg

Short B/W printing with nice photos and good information

- Thunderstones and Shooting Stars, Robert T Dodd, 1986, Harvard Press, 196 pg

Good pictures and information, some dated or obsolete

- Santa Lucia Meteorite Fall, McCartney Taylor, 2009 self published 62 pg

Great story of meteorite hunting in Argentina

- Find a Falling Star, Harvey Nininger, 1972, Erikson, 254 pg

Autobiography of America?s first meteorite hunter

- Meteorites from A to Z, Jenson, Jenson, Black, 2004 self published, 276 pg

Great reference for falls and finds

- The Handbook of Colorado Meteorites, Matt Morgan, 2000 CO Geo Survey, 40 pg

Compilation & pictures of the meteorites of Colorado

Good luck, keep us posted and don't give up.

Jason :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Simon; there are group hunts...often, if they are "open hunts" they will be posted well in advance of the event date...The Franconia, Gold basin strewn fields are your best bets for a group hunt that will provide you with mentors and high chance of success...dry lake beds and random searching are of good potential...but, I think you would do better with someone to mentor you...I suggest you start your search now by forming relationships on the forums and maybe meeting others that have these interests. remember, meteorites fall randomly everywhere but thebest places to find them are limited...maybe, you could be one of the few allowed to go to Antartica..

if you are serious and preservere you will have success

fred

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hey, Simon. Basically any dry lake bed in California is a great place to look for meteorites, but unless you are very familiar with what you are looking for the task can be quite daunting! To echo the advice already given I think your best bet would be to hook up with a seasoned hunter and spend a day in the field. I try to get out every couple weekends and would be happy to have you along on a Saturday hunt. No need for a metal detector yet, it's a lot of money for something you may end up never using again! In the mean time study as many pictures as you can, and pick up a book or two to get you going. If I had to pick just one I would say O. Richard Norton's "Rocks From Space" (2nd ed.) would be a great place to start.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

It's been quite some time since I've written, but the greatest factor in finding a meteorite is your proximity to a strewn field. So if you live in California, it's not too too far to Gold Basin in Arizona. All other factors such as what type of metal detector, etc., pale when compared to residential proximity as I call it. That's the most important factor.

Unless of course you plan to look for cold finds and those are hard to plan for because they are found by chance!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks to everyone that responded to my topic, I feel very welcomed and did not expect the amount of responses that I got. I've spent the day so far reading up on more meteorite hunting and watching meteorite men (not research but still fun to watch!)

Simon

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Welcome, Simon, to the forum.

I'm a new meteorite hunter, too, and have participated in some group hunts as well as individual prospecting.

I suggest for starters you look at the meteoritical bulletin, or met bull, here: http://www.lpi.usra.edu/meteor/metbull.php. You can search for meteorites by state, or counties in a state, or by name or other ways, too. You can also pin the meteorite's location onto Google Earth or Google maps and save them as "favorite places" for future reference. Many of the met bull entries have photos, or links to photos, that are helpful in learning what to look for. The information in the met bull is skimpy and sometimes not accurate as to locations, but it is a good place to start your research.

Another way to get acquainted is to buy a "throwdown" meteorite from a reputable seller, check the posts on this forum, or on Club Space Rock for good references. they are usually small and cheap, but give you a real life meteorite to see what it looks like.

Check the forums for group hunts coming up, too. They are discussed well in advance, usually, and you'll find lots of knowledgeable folks in them who are willing to help you, as well as newer prospectors who are also happy to share what they know.

Hope that helps..

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

Hi everyone,

My name is Simon and I am glad to be part of the forum. I am 17 years old, live in San Francisco, and am currently a Junior in high school. My hobbies include coin collecting, camping and hiking, fossil collecting, astronomy, and soon hopefully meteorite hunting. So far I have 2 small pieces (attached photos) that I found by chance a few years back a few hours north.

At the end of senior year I will be embarking on my "senior project", which is a month-long project in which students do something educational that interests them. Even though it is a year away I have already set my mind on meteorite hunting. I am not trying to find "the big one", in fact I'm not going for monetary profit at all. I just want to find some cool space rocks.

Since I have never actually hunted before, I signed up in this forum to make connections and learn the ins and outs. So I have a few questions.

1) What would the best environment be for searching? (dry lake bed, desert, etc) Are there any popular spots in california? (Travel is not a problem, I have a whole month for the project)

2) Are there group hunts? If so, is it better to go with a group or go solo?

3) What do you think the most important advice for an amateur hunter would be?

Thanks once again, happy hunting to all. (Also happy thanksgiving)

Simon

Hi Simon! I was just wondering how your project went?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I was curious also, so, i sent Simon a message and have so far been ignored...I sent him a little goody to jump-start his meteoritical endeavors...but he has disappeared...

I do hope he is well and still interested...and was not just having a wild frivalous fling with the meteorite geeks...

fred

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...