Topaz Mountain and Dugway, Utah Trip
May 26 - 28, 2007 (Memorial Day weekend)

by Eldon Hunewell


Brett Medici and yours truly left Friday a.m. and arrived at the Rancher Motel about that night and the following morning we set out to meet the rest of the club at the Topaz sign near the highway. Not long after that, Mr & Mrs. Tim Arnett arrived with about 5 other vehicles from the Glenwood Springs, Colorado club. Don & Gail Beamer, Bob Berry and Denny & DJ Vittum soon arrived, so we set out for Topaz. Tim's Glenwood Group went elsewhere in Topaz Valley while I led the Beamers, Vittums, Bob Berry and Brett to one of my favorite areas on the east wall of Topaz Valley. Within sight of the trucks, I turned an ankle and lost my balance and threw my right arm high into the air to catch my balance and at that point several pops were felt in my right shoulder and much immediate pain instantly. I knew I was hurt and it was embarrassing to explain that somehow I was suddenly somewhat disabled, but wanted to carry on and proceed to the collecting site. We prospected various places on the east wall with some limited success. Don and Bob helped me down by going slower and carrying my pack, etc. We established camp for the night near the knoll close to the west wall and people were all over that knoll like ants...even in the dark with lights. Some were doing quite well sifting the dirt while others prospected the open holes in the rhyolite.

The next morning we met again at the topaz sign and proceeded to Dugway geode beds. I started some in my holes from last fall and others in the main pit. It took awhile to hit geodes and Brett had the dubious distinction of working hard and having a bunch of young men and women come after awhile and dig just below him hitting some very large geodes. Bob Berry seemed to hit some nice ones later in the afternoon and think Don & Gail as well as Tim and his wife did ok and it was the first time for all the group there, except Denny and DJ Vittum who roamed many areas while in Utah, coming back to camp near us when the day was done. I showed Brett the Garnet area east of Topaz mtn and we found a few and then headed back to Dugway while the rest of the club went home. Brett spent a lot of time and hard work finding a large geode where the group of young people found some the previous day.

Because of my injury, I was not able to contribute much to digging but was able to advise and help the search for hidden gems. At both Dugway and Topaz Mountain, it can be a hit or miss but when one does make a strike it usually is very very good and worth the effort.

Eldon Hunewell