July 3-9 2014
The Searchers will run a long range trip in early July to Davis Creek (best obsidian site in CA), and McDermitt Nev (for green petrified bog wood among other things).
At Davis creek the collecting will be July 3rd, 4th, and 5th. We will be staying at the Lassen Creek campground, a basic campground but very pretty and it does have a chemical toilet. Someone should be at the campsite on the afternoon of the 2nd, and there should be signs to guide you to the camp. You can get into this camp with an RV.
Directions to Lassen Creek camp:
Take your favorite route to Alturas (in the far north east corner of California). From Alturas, go north on US 395. Approximately 22 miles from Alturas is the small town of Davis Creek. At the Davis Creek mercantile (530 233 3758) you can procure your free collecting permit, this is required. This will also be your last stop for Ice, cold drinks, ICE CREAM, etc. Continue another 11 miles to FS Access Rd 30. Turn right onto 30, and follow the signs. At about 5.5 miles you will take a right fork, cross a small bridge and the campground will be on your left.
The campground is a large meadow with some large pines and 2 streams running through camp. It is a dry camp, but there is a nice chemical toilet. RVs can access the camp, and it is comfortable for tenters. Gas limited supplies and ICE CREAM at Davis Creek Mercantile. Motels, gas, food, and medical facilities at (Alturas `22 miles south) or Lakeview (`22 miles north)
All collecting trips will leave camp at 0830. You will need a high clearance vehicle to access the sites, but 4x4 should not be necessary. The sites are not very far from camp.
Thursday July 3rd we will have a potluck to celebrate our first day of collecting. Friday the 4th people who wish can go to Davis Creek Mercantile and enjoy a BBQ dinner, the cost for this year’s dinners hasn’t been defined yet, but last year for 3 meats (which would feed 2 normal people) it was $28.Sat the 5th there will be no potluck, you are on your own for food.
Sunday the 6th will be a travel day from Davis Creek to McDermitt, roughly 4.5 hrs. The short route is 395 North, 140 East, and 95 North. There is a pretty cool rock shop on 395 in the little town at the state line, if it is still open.
The camp at McDermitt is at the Mitchell RV Park in town with hot showers and restrooms. The rates are $20/night for an RV site with hookups, Tent sites are $15 Gas and some groceries and a couple of small restaurants are available in McDermitt.
The McDermitt collecting will leave from camp at 08:30 (California time) on July 7th, 8th, and 9th. As far as collecting locations, we have made arrangements with a local guide which should help us get to the right stuff. 4 wheel drive may be necessary for some of these trips, if so we will car pool as usual.
We will have a potluck on the 7th to celebrate our first day of collecting at McDermitt, and on the 9th to celebrate the end of the collecting trip. You are on your own for dinner on the 8th.
We will have a campfire every night we can, please bring some firewood, or pick up some on your way.
You will need to be responsible for yourselves on most of the distance traveling. Be prepared for hot days and cold nights. Bring lots of water, sunscreen, hats etc. The collecting is mostly digging, so digging tools (shovel, pick, etc) are necessary in addition to your standard rock pick and water bottle. Obsidian is volcanic glass and is very sharp. Eye protection and gloves are highly recommended. One thing that a “pro” showed me the last time was the value of a bucket of water and a cheap hand brush. This made cleaning a piece of obsidian to properly judge its character ( to keep or to leaverite) a snap.
Digging is best done by small cooperatives; we will all end up better off by working in small groups. Also it is much better to knock down overburden than to work under it. Working under overburden is dangerous.
Both of these sites are justifiably famous, Davis Creek for rainbow, electric blue, green, and pink obsidian, and McDermitt for petrified wood, larsonite (petrified bog jasper) and agates. I believe we should be a productive trip for nice materials. And you know that anytime the Searchers get together in the outdoors it is a good time.
If someone knows a great collecting location on the way back to So Cal from McDermitt (that won’t be terrifyingly hot) we can consider breaking up the return trip for a day of collecting somewhere. Let me know.
After McDermitt some folks will probably continue north to do some more rockhounding. If you asked nicely I am sure you could buddy along with them for a while if you haven’t had your fill of collecting by then.
It is standard for not everyone to do every portion of the trip, feel free to join us when you can and leave when you have to.
If you are interested in any or all of this trip please contact me at email@example.com, or 714 724 7102 (my cell). I have had some initial feedback from folks who plan to go, I would appreciate it if everyone planning to go would confirm, so even if you have previously contacted me please reconfirm.
One note on collecting at Davis Creek. You do need a permit. The permit is free. Normally these can be procured at Davis Creek Mercantile (530) 233 3758 in Davis Creek. This is the most convenient place to pick up the permit, and I recommend you get yours there. Other choices are:
Modoc National Forest Supervisor's Office - 800 West 12 th Street Alturas, CA 96101
• Warner Mountain Ranger District Office - 385 Wallace St. Cedarville, CA 96104
Please feel free to contact me with any questions firstname.lastname@example.org, or 714 724 7102 (my cell).