FossilDudeCO

An ENTIRE Petrified forest!

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OK so maybe it wasn't a fossil hunting trip, but I spent this past Sunday helping the in laws dig out the foundation for their new patio!

We all know pretty well that when you dig a hole there is always something fun in there, this just happened to be PETRIFIED WOOD!

 

I have found some small chunks of this before, but some of these chunks got to be 25-30 pounds! (11-14kg)

 

The locals all know about the petrified wood, supposedly when the neighborhood was being built in the late 1970's the home builders dug up entire LOGS and TREES and buried them back down so people wouldn't find them. I keep hoping....

 

The area is also WELL KNOWN to have been home to plains Indians (Native Americans). In the late 1960's and early 1970's while houses were being built you could still find the occasional fire burn spot. Points and flakes abound, yet to date I have only been able to find 1 piece of worked stone.

 

The wood pictured here comes from a relative to the Cinnamon Tree and grew in a very moist, not quite swampy, environment about 67MYO in the southeast of Denver. 

 

In the area of this we also find palm wood but it is MUCH rarer than the cinnamon wood. Both types tend to be pretty close tot he same age from what I have found out!

 

 

 

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The bin holding all of my treasures is a 27 gallon (102L) black plastic bin.

The three pieces I pulled out to try and photo, but I just can't get a good shot. The largest piece there has a druzy quartz like  growth on the top side!

 

I will try to get a few better pictures.

 

I have no idea what I want to try and do with all of it. The bit in the picture represents about half of what we found halfway though the project! There must be THOUSANDS of pounds in their yard. I would love to see if some can cut and polish it up into cabs. @ynot@Sacha? anyone want to give it a try?

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An incredible find, Blake! Certainly additional incentive to visit the in-laws more often! Maybe see if they also want an in-ground pool ;)

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Hey Hi Blake,

Looks like a nice haul of wood.

I will see if I can work a piece or two for You.

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Really neat! I'm not perfect at cabbing but if you want to send a couple pieces my way (owner of the rock shop in town usually asks for a piece in return for using his equipment), I would be willing to make some after finals for you. Below are some I cabbed from Aussie petrified wood :)

20160810_184337.jpg

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40 minutes ago, Kane said:

An incredible find, Blake! Certainly additional incentive to visit the in-laws more often! Maybe see if they also want an in-ground pool ;)

Haha right! I'd dig that by hand!

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@ynot @Jesuslover340

 

I will warn you all...iit is a VERY hard object.

I won't keep my hopes up too high :)

Don't ruin your tools trying to do it!

It might look cool even with just a side polished like the Madagascar stuff.

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3 minutes ago, FossilDudeCO said:

will warn you all...iit is a VERY hard object.

If it was soft it would not take a good polish.

From the pictures it looks agatized which is a good thing for cabochons, as long as it is not cracked to *^%$%$

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7 minutes ago, FossilDudeCO said:

@ynot @Jesuslover340

 

I will warn you all...iit is a VERY hard object.

I won't keep my hopes up too high :)

Don't ruin your tools trying to do it!

It might look cool even with just a side polished like the Madagascar stuff.

Aussie petrified wood was pretty hard as well; John (shop owner) has a pretty big saw for such things :) And as @ynot stated, if it's NOT hard, it won't be easy to get it to polish. Just examine the pieces you want to send for cracks, as they pose risks of fracture :)

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@ynot @Jesuslover340

 

Well great then!

Yes, lots of it is agatized. I will do my best to pick unfractured pieces. And get a couple boxes together!

 

 

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petrified forest: are you implying you found an in-situ buried life assemblage of fossil trees?*

Cause that WOULD make it pretty special

* that being very rare,of course

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2 hours ago, doushantuo said:

petrified forest: are you implying you found an in-situ buried life assemblage of fossil trees?*

Cause that WOULD make it pretty special

* that being very rare,of course

 

It really felt like it when it was coming up! It is all very fractured though so I am thinking this is stuff that was buried during the land development.

It would explain the large piles of it.

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5 hours ago, doushantuo said:

petrified forest: are you implying you found an in-situ buried life assemblage of fossil trees?*

Cause that WOULD make it pretty special

* that being very rare,of course

@Ash and I have :P

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Blake, send me a couple pieces about softball size and I'll see if I can cut a couple slabs and then polish a display piece or 2 like I do with coral. We can go from there if it's worth cabbing. 

 

Rectangular is better than round for clamping.

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Nice find Blake those should look gorgeous when they are done. Did you convince them that the patio needs to be MUCH bigger? :D

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Blake,

 

If you do end up with literally thousands of pounds of this stuff I'd suggest considering investing in a tumbler and some grits and polishes to see what this stuff looks like tumbled and polished. For tumbling you'd need to make little ones out of big ones first and break some of the pieces into smaller chunks to work in the tumbler. You may already have some tumbler size chunks. I did this with the bulk of the fossilized coral material I collected with John in the Withlacoochee a couple of years back. In fact, I've got the final batch slowly spinning away in my garage at the moment. The colors in this pet wood (along with the quartz veining) would seem to make for some nice tumbler material.

 

If you wish to send a flat-rate box my way I can give it a spin and ship you back some smoothies so you can see what it might look like tumbled. My last batch of coral has several more weeks of rotation till it's complete but I've got nothing left to spin after that. Tammy and I are heading out to Idaho to see the solar eclipse in August and we plan on rockhounding for a week or so around the state. I've got a rockhounding book for Idaho (why wouldn't I?) and it lists several places for "tumbler material" so I'm sure I'll manage to keep my tumbler occupied through the end of the year.

 

 

Cheers.

 

-Ken

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Ooo I have some PM's to send! and boxes!

 

incoming @digit @Sacha @Jesuslover340

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2 hours ago, aerogrower said:

Nice find Blake those should look gorgeous when they are done. Did you convince them that the patio needs to be MUCH bigger? :D

 

They are piling up all the other stuff for me to take, my car literally couldn't hold anymore!

I tried to bring all the largest pieces home with me. most of what I left there are smaller pieces.

 

I expect to find another 27 gallon tub worth when I go back on Sunday!

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Dang! Sounds like you need to invest in some lapidary supplies !!

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Quite the haul Blake, Congrats:fistbump: would love to see some polished! I've been considering trying to cut and polish some of the partial Mammoth teeth and tusk bits we find here:)

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4 hours ago, jcbshark said:

Quite the haul Blake, Congrats:fistbump: would love to see some polished! I've been considering trying to cut and polish some of the partial Mammoth teeth and tusk bits we find here:)

 

Oh yeah, I do love some of those sliced mammoth teeth.

 

I want a knife hilt made of ivory :P 

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Looking foward to seeing the recruits receive and start producing some beauties from this!

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amazing Blake. 

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Good ole fossilized wood.  I gave up on wood many years ago when I realized I wanted to put all my efforts into other fossils.  Wood seemed to be everywhere back in the day.  Would love to see some of this stuff polished.  Good luck

 

RB

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Probably not worth shipping any to me but I have the means to slice and cab though I haven't cabbed anything in years, but I'm curious to see what a slice of it looks like and wondering how you know it's Cinnamon wood - it must have detailed-enough grain to tell that?

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1 hour ago, Wrangellian said:

Probably not worth shipping any to me but I have the means to slice and cab though I haven't cabbed anything in years, but I'm curious to see what a slice of it looks like and wondering how you know it's Cinnamon wood - it must have detailed-enough grain to tell that?

 

It has been studied by a PaleoBotanist down here in Denver. I took some of the small pieces I had found to her a few years ago to see what she knew, at that point I only knew it was wood! She told me a little history of the area and how it formed. It is indeed an agatized wood and the reason we don't see rings or structure in a lot of the pieces is the environment that they formed in had a large amount of water that caused some slight decomposition.

 

Apparently, I just found out, if you are lucky, some pieces not only show agatization, but opalization as well!

 

*fingers crossed for my cutters!*

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