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Utah Travel Headlines

Monday, April 02, 2012

Spring Is The Time To Rockhound In Utah

Right now is my favorite time to go rock hounding in Utah. Many of our best spots are located in desert open country where air temperatures get hot during the summer. Conditions will be perfect for exploring these areas on many days during the next couple months.

(Many spots are accessible via dirt roads, which become treacherous when wet, but our West Desert area does not receive much rainfall and so that is not usually a problem.)

Utah's Geological Survey has added an interactive map to its website to help people find some of our best rock hounding spots. You can see the map here.

The Survey recommends these spots:
  • Stansbury Island for Oolitic Sand
  • Knolls Area for gypsum sand
  • Vernon Hills for wonderstone
  • Dugway for geodes
  • Topaz Mountain for topaz
  • Manti-La Sal Forest for birdseye marble
  • Mt Nebo for onyx marble
  • Sunstone Knoll for sunstones
  • Black Rock Desert for obsidian
  • Mineral Mountains for smokey quartz and feldspar
  • Marysvale area for bixbyite, rutile and amethyst
  • Capitol Reef National Park for agate, chert, jasper and petrified wood
The survey website also provides details about the latest collecting rules. If you are interested in rock hounding, the website is a great resource with basic information. It also provides links to local rock and mineral clubs.

- Dave Webb

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