Gitche Gumee Landing
Rock & Mineral Collecting at the Caledonia Native Copper Mine near Ontonagon, MI in the Upper Peninsula.
Red Metal Minerals offers rock and mineral collecting at the Caledonia Native Copper Mine for the rock collector, geologist or other interested people.
Collect samples of copper, or perhaps quartz, silver, epidote, calcite, and datolite in your private rock pile. Superb specimens in every size range have been discovered in the Caledonia Mine. When the Caledonia Mine was being mined, it yielded about 3.1 million kg (6,835,500 lb) of refined copper.
Red Metal Explorations acquired the mineral rights in 1985. The No. 4 Caledonia adit was reopened for a currently active program of exploration. The copper that is recovered by Red Metal Explorations is prepared and sold as specimens. The largest single piece removed to date weighed 1360 kg (3000 lbs). Other specimens recovered by Red Metal Explorations include native silver, datolite, calcite, epidote, adularia and native copper crystals.
The Caledonia Native Copper Mine is one of only two underground operating copper mines in the United States, and the only one offering collecting trips. This is the only underground operating copper mine within the state of Michigan. While the Caledonia native copper mine is operational, the mining is for specimens instead of bulk ore.
Lake Superior Copper is environmentally sound and offers no problems for the visitor. There are no sulfides or environmntally difficult minerals in this copper. The term "native" as used by mining men is synonymous with "pure", "unadulterated" or "virgin". Keweenaw copper was found in a state of such purity that a piece brought from underground could immediately be beaten into pots and pans without smelting or refining.
The 1.1 billion year old Keweenaw Peninsula had the largest deposits of native copper in the world, and produced over 13 billion pounds of copper and 16 million ounces of silver since 1845, extracted through 11,000 miles of underground tunnels and workings.
The Caledonia Native Copper Mine is owned by Red Metal Minerals. Richard Whiteman, a noted geologist, is in charge of the mine, mine tours, specimen collection and sale of copper specimens and ores.
Richard Whiteman also operates the Great Lakes GeoScience Press which prints such books as Copper Country Road Trips (a field trip through the mining locations of the Keweenaw) and a Self-Guided Geological Field Trip to the Keweenaw Peninsula, Michigan.
In the Smithsonian Museum, directly below the Hope Diamond, hangs a huge sheet of copper from the White Pine Mine discovered and brought out by Red Metal Minerals.
Red Metal Minerals also offers a collection of the rocks and minerals of the Copper Country, one collection of the Rocks and Minerals of Michigan, and one collection of the Fossils of Michigan. These collections are available from Red Metal Minerals for $5 each plus $3 shipping and handling.
The rock and mineral collection from the Copper Country contains Native Copper from the White Pine Mine; Mohawkite, the rare mineral often used as a gemstone, from the Mohawk Mine; Epidote from the Caledonia Mine; Datolite gemstone from the Caledonia Mine, Conglomerate from the Kingston Mine, polished Lake Superior Agate; Calcite from Keweenaw County; Basalt from Houghton County; Chrysocolla from the Algomah Mine in Ontonagon County and Prehnite from the Osceola Mine in Houghton County.
Ontonagon is located on Lake Superior on the north west side of the Upper Peninsula, just 13 miles from Porcupine Mountains State Park. The Caledonia Mine is easily accessible from Ontonagon. It is located near Mass, MI, just 14 miles from Ontonagon, 34 miles from Baraga, 41 miles from Houghton, 62 miles from Ironwood, 115 miles from Ishpeming, just west of Marquette, 124 miles from Iron Mountain.
for a fine selection of rocks and minerals as well as interesting books about mining,
unusual candles set in rocks, and unique jewelry items..
Copper Country Road Trips: Enjoy Keweenaw Mining History From The Comfort Of Your Car by Lawrence J. Molloy. Published by Great Lakes GeoScience Press.
E-Mail Richard Whiteman at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on the rock and mineral collecting tours, purchasing rock and mineral specimens, and the books published by Great Lakes GeoScience Press. Many different types and sizes of specimens and ores, such as the ones pictured at the top of the page, are also available from Red Metal Minerals.
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