I just attended the Bancroft Gemboree 2015, Canada’s largest gem and mineral show. There are 3 distinct areas where rockhounds can explore their interest, the curling rink and the hockey arena which are both indoors and the outdoors trading stalls. In my experience the trading stalls are the best places to purchase minerals. Dealers come from all across the country, they have incredible stories and the prices are phenomenal. Check out my youtube video on the Bancroft Gemboree here.
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Posted in Bancroft, Bancroft gemboree, book on collecting, book on collecting rocks and minerals, book on crystals, book on gemstones, book on rocks and minerals, collecting rocks near Bancroft, environment, fun things to do in toronto, gemology, gems, gemstones, geography, geology, Interesting, looking for gems, Nature/Outdoors, Ontario's geology, picture of, rockhound, rockhounding, rockhounding in Ontario, Rocks & Gems, rocks and minerals, rocks in Ontario, tagged Bancroft accomodation, Bancroft gemboree, Bancroft Gemboree 2015, Canada's largest, gem, gemboree, minerals in Ontario, rock and mineral, rock and mineral show on August 3, 2015| Leave a Comment »
Posted in Bancroft, best things to do in Toronto, books, Buy The Book, Canada, collecting rocks near Bancroft, crystals, gemology, gems, gemstones, geography, geology, Interesting, Nature/Outdoors, Ontario geography, Ontario's geography, Ontario's geology, picture of, rock collecting, rockhounding, rockhounding in Ontario, Rocks & Gems, rocks and minerals, rocks in Ontario, tagged Bancroft, gem, gemology, gemstone, ontario, rocks and minerals on April 26, 2015| Leave a Comment »
Well as you’ve probably gathered by the above picture, I’ve just discovered some pretty incredible mineral specimens – a pocket of gem quality tremolite at the contact between quartz and calcite veins. Tremolite evolves to actinolite under the right conditions, and sometimes changes to diopside. Anyway, the finer points of the discovery are detailed on my youtube site (caver461) and within the video details are provided for the purchase of my latest book on minerals – ‘Rockhound: An Experience of the North’. In the book I detail how to find gemstones and something of the experience of finding rocks and minerals in the north.
To see purchase details or for a preview, just type the book name into Google and click on the link, it will take you directly to the print company (Lulu), or click this link here for immediate access to the book on Lulu.
Posted in Caves, documentary, Education, exploration, geography, hiking, history, Interesting, Life, malagan, NATJA Award, New Guinea, New Guniea, Papua New Guinea, paranormal, people, Personal, photo, photos, picture of, PNG, religion, science, Sepik River, strange places, Travel, travel writing, tagged Anne Gordon, Documentary, malagan, New Guinea, Papua New Guinea, Papua New Guinea documentary, Sepik River, travel writing on February 22, 2014| 2 Comments »
I recently conducted an interview with Anne Gordon, a well known Canadian travel writer. Anne had just recently returned from Papua New Guinea and in particular, a trip up the Sepik River where she visited local tribes and learned something of the Malagan culture).
See the Papua New Guinea documentary interview with Anne Gordon here
As a travel writer Anne speaks about the benefits of belonging to NATJA and other travel organizations, the benefits such as sponsored trips and the professional development opportunities that are open for travel writing.
As Anne said, “New Guinea is undoubtedly the most exotic and fascinating place she has ever been, there are over 900 tribes scattered throughout the island and an an ecosystem that spreads both above and beneath the surface”. Many of New Guinea’s tribes maintain customs and cultures that hold a special fascination for us in the west. Head hunting and cannibalism still exist in isolated pockets and have been practised quite commonly within the last 100 years.
Anne Gordon’s interview centres around the Sepik River and the carver’s of the Malagan culture, in particular the master carvers of New Ireland, she shows many incredible pictures of the tribes in that area and the tribal culture of New Guinea.
Posted in adventure in Ontario, Adventures, bizzare, Caves, cool ice formations, crazy things, crystals, guelph, ice formations, Interesting, my life, nature, Nature/Outdoors, News, ontario, photo, Photography, photos, picture of, Toronto, tagged 2013 ice storm, fallen trees, ice storm, ice storm in Guelph, ice storm in Ontario, power out, winter storm on December 24, 2013| 1 Comment »
We seem to be at the tail end of a most disastrous ice storm. The storm began last Saturday and continued on till Monday morning. Tree limbs were tearing from trunks and crashing down all over Guelph, it was like something out of a disaster movie. It was not possible to even drive down the road without having to weave all over to avoid the debris. We lost power for a few hours, but it appears that there will be over 200,000 people in Toronto who will be cold and dark through Christmas.
For us, the sun is shining now and trees are glittering like forests of diamonds.
See a video of the 2013 ice storm (Guelph) here.
Posted in adventure in Ontario, backpacking, Bancroft, best things to do in Toronto, book on caves, books, Canada, cave conservation, cave digging, cave diving in ontario, cave formation, Caves, Caves in Canada, caves in Ontario, caving, Caving in Hamilton, Caving in Ontario, cool things to do in toronto, documentary, Education, environment, Eramosa Karst, exploration, extreme sports, FOTEK, fun things to do in toronto, geography, geology, guelph, Hamilton, Interesting, Life, My Book, natural spring, nature, Nature/Outdoors, ontario, Ontario geography, Ontario Underground, Ontario's geography, Ontario's geology, Personal, photo, Photography, photos, picture of, rocks and minerals, rocks in Ontario, rockwatching, searching for caves, sinkholes, sinkholes in Ontario, sports, strange places, things to do in Toronto, Toronto Cave Group, tunnels, underground, tagged beneath the forest, breathing tunnels, cave in Northern Canada, caving, Caving in Ontario, Northern Ontario, Snogof, winter sports on December 10, 2013| 2 Comments »
This past weekend Jeff and I visited a spot in the forest where we had found a tunnel this past summer. We had been trying to dig into the tunnel but the bugs were terrible. Now that the ground is heavily laden with snow there is no such problem – now its the cold. Anyway, after about 4 hours of digging and levering frozen boulders we managed to create a hole large enough to look well into our suspected cave and what we saw within was an elliptical shaped tunnel that was plugged by boulders. A small waterfall dropped from the roof of the tunnel and beyond, a chamber in marble.
See video for Snowgof – breathing tunnel here.
We are yet to access the chamber, but with great difficulty Jeff photographed a small segment of the chamber. In his picture you can see a wall of pure white marble and you can hear the water falling within.
Near the entrance the roof is encrusted with frost thus indicating airflow from deeper in the earth. In fact it was the smear of frost on the wall outside the cave that first got us digging there in earnest. Based on its proximity to the edge of a steep slope and no apparent resurgence at its bottom I am left to conclude that the water flowing into the cave must be dropping down deep quite quickly. I suspect that it goes down a shaft such as you see in Twin Trickles Cave.
Spring will reveal what lies beyond.
Posted in adventure in Ontario, Adventures, best things to do in Toronto, bizzare, book on caves, Buy The Book, Canada, cave digging, cave diving in ontario, cave formation, Caves, Caves in Canada, caves in Ontario, caving, Caving in Hamilton, Caving in Ontario, documentary, Education, environment, exploration, extreme sports, FOTEK, fun things to do in toronto, geography, geology, guelph, Hamilton, ice formations, Interesting, my life, natural spring, nature, Nature/Outdoors, ontario, ontario caves, Ontario geography, Ontario Underground, Ontario's geography, Ontario's geology, photo, Photography, photos, picture of, rocks and minerals, rocks in Ontario, rockwatching, sinkholes, sinkholes in Ontario, sports, strange places, Toronto Cave Group, tunnels, underground, underground Ontario, tagged caving, caving books, Caving in Canada, embryo cave, exploring caves in canada, exploring in Canada, video on December 2, 2013| Leave a Comment »
This past weekend Rob, Jeff and I visited Embryo Cave with the intention of digging out something of the earth plug at the lower end of the cave’s main stream passage.
lying pressed between the rock and the dirt it was an experience from which I was unable to shake the feeling that it was as though we were returning to mother earth. We dug for some time in the earth as we suspected that in breaching an earthen crest up ahead we would possibly break into tunnel that led onwards and downwards. There appears to be a lower water filled level in this cave. The flowing stream bubbles up in sand part way along the main trunk passage and it sinks again just short of the earthen plug.
Sadly we tired before we got through the dirt, but it was close and next time we visit we will certainly complete the job.
Posted in adventure in Ontario, best things to do in Toronto, book on caves, books, cave conservation, cave digging, cave diving in ontario, cave formation, Caves, Caves in Canada, caves in Ontario, caving, Caving in Ontario, diving in ontario, documentary, environment, Eramosa Karst, exploration, extreme sports, geography, geology, guelph, Hamilton, hiking, Interesting, kitchener, Life, My Book, nature, Nature/Outdoors, niagara escarpment, ontario, ontario caves, Ontario geography, Ontario Underground, Ontario's geography, Ontario's geology, photo, Photography, picture of, rocks and minerals, rocks in Ontario, rockwatching, sinkholes, sinkholes in Ontario, things to do in Toronto, Toronto Cave Group, tunnels, underground Ontario, water in Ontario, What is an extreme sport, tagged books on caves, cave exploration in Canada, caves in Canada, caves in Onario, caving, Caving in Canada, Caving in Ontario, wasteland waterway on November 17, 2013| 5 Comments »
Jeff and I made a recent reconnaissance in the Wasteland Waterway Cave system as we suspected that with the filling of the Blue Barrel sink, the cave passages had been blocked and so the deeper reaches of the cave system would now be sealed forever. But nature is more persistent than that and the sink had cleared itself out from beneath. On the surface there is a slight indent, but below the tunnel is perfectly clear.
see the video of Cave exploration in Canada – Wasteland Waterway here.
I suppose this now brings to light the question as to when we are going to push the tunnel to its very furthest endpoint. We strongly suspect that beyond the ‘gulch’ and the aerofoil the tunnels get bigger again. You ask what is stopping us? It’s a long cold crawl and a tight squeeze at the end of that which makes me somewhat leery.