CFMS Field Trip

April 23rd/24th 2011 Sat/Sun. 9am.

Kingston Mountains in the Kingston Range, CA

 

CFMS Co Chair south field trips

Robert Sankovich 805-494-7734 rmsorca@adelphia.net

Adam Dean 909-489-4899 theagatehunter@verizon.net

 

It is important to let us know if you are going or think you might be going. The weather can change and if the field trip is canceled we wonít be able to notify you. It is important that you get the map for this field trip. Some roads might not have signs. With the map and the directions you should be able to find the site. There is also GPS coordinates. Please let us know at least 1 week prior to the field trip.

 

Field trip: Our April field trip will be to the Kingston Mountains in the Kingston Range. Come out for a fun weekend of digging for, clear and milky quartz crystals, and possibly amethyst crystals, the weather should be nice, warm during the day, but cool at night. The main road to the collecting area is well graded. The drive, from camp to the site area, 4-wheel drive is recommended. The site enters the Kingston Range Wilderness Area and no vehicles are allowed to precede any farther you will need to walk. The hike is not bad, and there is plenty to be found along the way to the primary collecting spot. The best material is up higher up and is moderate to hard hike.

 

GPS: N 35 46 29.47 W 115 54 41.23

 

When: April 23rd/24th 2011, Sat, 9am-3pm. Sun 9am-noon. Deb and I will be camping Friday 22nd to Sunday the 24th. I will be there late afternoon/evening Friday.

 

Directions: 15 freeway North, to the town of Baker, from Baker 15 freeway drive north 26 miles more to Cima Road turnoff. Turn left, north. Drive .05 miles to Excelsior Rd/Kingston Rd continue North 34.5 miles. About halfway the Excelsior Rd/Kingston Rd will slowly curve going West. Continue West on Smith Talc Rd 4.7 miles, Continue West Mesquite Valley Rd. 1.3 miles, There will be a fork in the road, go left West on Western Talc Rd 2 miles. Donít go on Furnace Creek Rd. From the 15 freeway to the site it is about 43 miles. I will have a map for reference, use my directions and the map. Some roads might not have signs. You should be able to see our tent, which is white and blue. Look for my White Ford F-250 Crew Cab. There will be a CFMS sign in the window. We will also have hand held radioís/walkie talkies on channel 7 (287 miles from Thousand Oaks to site, 5.5 hours drive time) It can be real windy.

Tools: Rock pick/hammer, gad pry bar, chisels, hand sledge, heavy sledge, sifter, large pry bar, shovel, garden rake, hand trowel, pick, eye protection, gloves, collecting bags, buckets, wide brimmed hat, suntan lotion, There is no shade morning, afternoon, and it can be hot, but it will probably be cool, so dress accordingly, layers. I would recommend a daypack, to put your tools in. Lots of water, lunch, food, camping gear.

 

Material to Collect: Clear and milky quartz crystals, and possibly amethyst crystals, The best collecting is accomplished by carefully examining the boulders and rock at the base of the mountains, but single crystals can be found just about anywhere from the main road all the way to the foothills, especially in the washes. Inspect any boulders you encounter for cavities or seams. You will need hammers, sledges, safety glasses, gloves to split the tough host rock. Turning the soft sand in the wash with a garden rake or hand trowel will also sometimes expose buried crystals. There are veins throughout the mountains at the head of the wash, at one time there was an amethyst claim there. Be patient and willing to do some work, and you should return with many fine specimens.

 

Points of interest: The wilderness is botanically one of the most diverse areas within the California Desert. Botanists have identified 505 native plant species and 32 are viewed as endangered, rare, or limited in distribution. Cresote bush scrub vegetation is found at lower elevations and juniper-pinyon woodland at higher elevations. The only stand of giant Nolina in the eastern Mojave Desert is found in Kingston Range, and a relic stand of white fir trees clings (one of only three stands found in the California Desert) to the slopes of two drainage's just below Kingston Peak. Also located in the wilderness is a portion of the Shadow Valley-Cima Dome Joshua tree forest (one of the densest concentrations in the world). The vegetation and perennial water support a variety of wildlife species, which do not occur in nearby drier habitats. Bird densities are many times higher and contain higher species diversity. The Kingston Mountains are one of the four localities in California in which confirmed sightings of the banded gila monster have been made. Other wildlife species include bighorn sheep, wild burros, coyote, black-tailed jackrabbits, ground squirrels, kangaroo rats, roadrunners, quail, rattlesnakes, tarantulas, and several species of lizards. The southeastern portion of the wilderness provides critical habitat for the threatened desert tortoise.

 

Map: E-mail us and we will send you the map to the Kingston Range