As always it is great to make a short escape from the cold and snow of northern New York State to the desert warmth of the Tucson Show. As usual this years weather in Arizona was nothing short of fantastic. My quick four day excursion (including almost two full days of travel) left precious little time to find that which is new or unique.
There were a few finds worth mentioning that drew attention but not all were worthy of investing in. This year the prices on Chinese minerals came back a bit closer to Earth as compared to the outrageous prices demanded last year. The overall condition of specimens seamed lower in many cases. With some dealers I was hard pressed to find anything that wasn’t badly damaged.
Rock Currier of Jewel Tunnel Imports, CA, did a fine job of cleaning the prehnites on epidote that are now coming out of Mali, Africa. I made sure to get two boxes of his very best ones, and although quite expensive, I think these will be noted as some of the best prehnite specimens to be found anywhere. Groupings with fine color and outstanding form. They are like those seen last year but in more aesthetic, almost sculptural, groupings of more substantial size. Here are a couple pics of nice ones…..
The new prehnite and manganobabingtonites on quartz form China were interesting but I missed out on the best ones so did not purchase any. Also from China were fine golden barites on fluorite of which I was able to score seven specimens. These were only with two dealers that I know of and probably only three dozen specimens total. I was thrilled to get first choice. Several had damage but were still worthy of purchasing.
Although I am a mineral specimen oriented dealer, I always find it fun to check out the big sculptural and home decore specimens that always turn up at this show. Here are a couple of photos of my Father posing with fun specimens that won’t show up in my inventory….
If you enjoy fossils there is always something large and gruesome to observe…
As always, I had a great time camping, buying minerals, looking at displays and chatting with old friends. Tucson is a wonderful experience, but, be sure to have a pocket full of green backs, because it isn’t cheap!
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