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Just returned from a few days WAY up north near Happy Camp, CA.  We weren't detecting but looking for something valuable never the less.  I've heard about what's referred to as "Happy Camp jade" since high school but never went looking for it.  Finally got a local guide who took me and Miner John up into the mountains near Indian Creek to find some.  And find some we did!  Actually found a lot more than the pictures here but some of the pieces were literally boulders and too heavy to pack out.  A little  research shows this is officially called Californite, not a "true" jade, but a variation because of it's unique colorations.  We were told on the other side of the creek from where we were is a huge boulder with spider webs of gold incased in it, but the water was too high right now to reach it.  So, a fall trip is planned.  Anyway, if interested, do a quick Google search for it.  Very cool stuff.  Going to cut and polish a bit of it later to show it off.

Digger Bob

Happy Cammp jade #1.JPG

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7 hours ago, Digger Bob said:

Going to cut and polish a bit of it later to show it off.

Cool.  I would enjoy seeing how it comes out polished.  Thanks.

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Not Jade. Nephrite jade is Actinolite an Inosilicate amphibole. Not related to Californite.

Californite is massive Vesuvainite, a Sorosilicate. The more gemmy varieties are commonly known as Idocrase outside of Northern California.

I've cut some of the better material from Happy Camp and it tends to undercut adjacent to the color changes. I had luck finishing with cerium oxide but my material was darker green and translucent, your material will probably cut different. It's often a pretty stone with sometimes unusual colors.

Interesting to note that free gold is sometimes seen in specimens from Happy Camp. You might want to journey across that river next time you stop by. A Californite deposit with gold would be worth claiming.

 

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Excellent report on the Happy Camp material at http://gemologyproject.com/wiki/index.php?title=Californite along with photos, one showing gold.

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That is some very visually appealing  material.  I would think it could be made to be fairly valuable by someone with lapidary skills.  

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Looks like I will need a bigger backpack if I go collecting Jade around Happy camp! A bigger vehicle too!

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