The phosphate minerals, those containing the PO4 radical, have always been interesting to me.  This radical, with a negative three charge, is about the about the same size as the arsenate (AsO4) and vanadate (VO4) radicals and some minerals are involved in a solid solution relationship (see numerous previous posts). Members of the group also seem to have an affinity for the hydroxide ion, OH. Most of the phosphate minerals, with the exception of the apatite group, are rare or at least uncommon.  The phosphate radical also commonly attaches to metallic ions and produces, for example, wavellite and variscite (aluminum), turquoise (copper and aluminum), strengite (iron),  rockbridgeite (ironRead More →

The other day I was reading a copy of the Mineralogical Record, a mineral magazine (actually more like a professional journal) that is issued bimonthly and is the most authoritative and widely respected mineral collector’s journal in the world; no serious advanced collector would be without it (  I did notice that Wendell Wilson, the Editor-in-Chief and Publisher since ~1977, continues to publish an outstanding magazine with beautiful color photos. My mind often goes in interesting directions and I decided to see if a mineral was named after the Editor.  Sure enough, wendwilsonite was named in 1987 for a hydrated calcium magnesium arsenate (contains the AsO4 radical)—Ca2Mg(AsO4)2-2H2O.  In reading descriptions of the mineralRead More →

CSMS is an incorporated, non-profit organization with these goals: To promote and disseminate knowledge of the earth sciences, especially as they relate to mineralogy, lapidary, and fossils. To encourage study, collection and fashioning of minerals. To accomplish the same through social meetings, lectures, programs, displays, shows, and field trips. The Pick & Pack is published monthly by the Colorado Springs Mineralogical Society. Our Constitution and Bylaws. Meetings are the Third Thursday of each month, except August, at 7:30 PM, at:Read More →

Pick & Pack – News Archive Pick & Pack Vol. 45, Number 1, Feb. 2005 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 10, Dec. 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 9, Nov. 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 8, Oct. 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 7, Sept. 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 6, July/August 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 5, June 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 4, May 2004 Pick & Pack Vol. 44, Number 3, April 2004 Pick & Pack Staff Managing Editor Ethan A. Bronner Feature Editors Mailer Robert and Naoko Murphy The Pick & Pack is a monthly bulletin of the Colorado Springs MineralogicalRead More →

Satellite Group Activities & Leaders Camera Club Roger Pittman, Leader Crystal Study Group Lorrie Hutchinson, Leader Faceting Group Dave Wilson, Leader Fossil Study Group John Harrington, Leader Micromount Group Robson Eams, Leader Pebble Pups Loren Lowe, Leader Lapidary Group Manny Sanchez, LeaderRead More →