Butte, Montana, Itinerary

by Jan Evanich

Saturday, August 4th-----Early arrivals to Butte will visit the Federation Show in full swing and meet new acquaintances helping to make this a great trip. Claude Huber connected us with a local ³Butte old timer² and he has graciously agreed to share his knowledge of mineral sites that would take years to locate, if at all. John Magnasco and I will be meeting with him at the show and finalize the week's schedule. John and I will also gather basic supplies and rent one 4WD vehicle that we will share up to six people. Stan Bogosian is planning to drive his vehicle, so there will be at least two opportunities to keep expenses down by sharing vehicle costs. Most people will be staying in Butte this evening.

Sunday, August 5th-----The first field trip of the week will be to a barite locality at Indian Head Rock north of Butte near Basin. Our local contact will lead this one and has detailed many very nice finds of large barite crystals recently. This will take most of the day and plan to depart Butte by 8am that morning. Dinner in Butte this evening.

Monday, August 6th-----This is Butte Museum Day or, if you choose, you can join other members who will be spending the day "scouting" potential sites for the week (we already have leads on several). The Museum Curator, Dr. Berg, has agreed to give us a private tour of the Montana Tech Museum. We will also be checking out other local historical sites in and around Butte.

Tuesday, August 7th-----The second full day of collecting will be to a pegmatite site near Spire Rock in the Pipestone Pass area. Plan to depart about 8am again from Butte. We will have cell phones and a designated departure site this morning. Again, our local contact is very familiar with this area and knows just where to go to potentially collect large quartz crystals and titanite crystals. This will be a full day and we will be camping in the Pipestone area at a developed campground for the evening. You may elect to stay at a hotel in Butte, since we are less than an hour away.

Wednesday, August 8th-----Another full day of collecting, this time in the Toll Mountain area of Butte. It's a pegmatite area with typical large quartz crystals and other associated species. Several known productive sites will be checked out. As an alternative, other members may elect to visit other researched sites on their own. It's your choice. We will be visiting DJ Minerals this evening (or possible on Tuesday night) with owner Duane Johnson showing us many special Butte mineral specimens not easily found any more. Many will be available for purchase. Camping will be at Toll Mountain or you may opt to stay in Butte at a hotel.

Thursday, August 9th-----A "floater day" today. This is your chance to re-visit some of the sites we collected at earlier in the week or head out to areas you have an interest in. The barite collecting site near Indian Head Rock is highly recommended if you could not make the Sunday trip. Stay tuned.......

Friday, August 10th-----We will visit some of the famous sulfide mine localities including The Nettie, Orphan Boy, and the Kossuth. Again, these localities are well known, so don't expect those highly crystallized sulfide specimens you have seen in the Mineralogical Record Butte issue. They are gone! We will be looking for micro mount material and small specimens. As an alternative, other members will be visiting sites of interest to be determined. Your choice.

Saturday, August 11th-----This will be the final full day of the trip for collecting. The locality is Calvert Hill. We will have good knowledge ragarding this site from our ³Butte old timer² on where and what to look for. Farewell dinner this evening in Butte.

I hope this gives you a good idea of what to expect in the great opportunity for collecting minerals in and around Butte. Bring what you need for your particular collecting needs, plan to either camp (rough style, not like the way I do) or reserve a hotel in Butte. If you are coming in the weekend of August 4th, don't miss a chance to see the Federation show. Vehicle expenses can be shared so everyone cuts cost. If you are planning to fly and need some gear driven to Butte, I would recommend that you contact Stan Bogosian. He would be happy to take a few things for you, especially with a portage fee to help him cut his gas costs. John Magnasco has information of typical lodging and vehicle costs. The primary contacts for this trip are:

Dan Evanich-----Cell phone 408-505-2960
John Magnasco-----Cell phone 408-838-9186
Rick Kennedy-----Cell phone 408-529-9690
Stan Bogosian-----Cell phone 408-568-2489

Of course, you are welcomed to just "drop-in" during the week if you want. But for those who are seriously interested in spending most of the week in Butte, please confirm your schedule with me by Wednesday, July 18th for logistics purposes. You can call me (or any of the above listed), or send me an email.