NOJMS Field Trip page

This page contains photos and reports from past field trips.

Attending a club field trip is a great way to learn about mineral and fossil collecting, bond with other club members, learn about local geology, and enjoy the great outdoors while augmenting your own collection. Join a club (like the NoJMS) today, and get out there!


FIELD TRIPS ARE OPEN TO PAID NOJMS MEMBERS ONLY. You must be a paid member in good standing to attend our field trips.

All attending will be required to sign a liability release/hold harmless agreement for the club in order to participate.

Safety is the #1 priority on all field trips!

SPECIAL NOTES to Club Members: If you are interested in attending any trip, handouts will be available at the club meeting the month before the scheduled date if possible. If you are unable to attend the club meeting, you may e-mail our NoJMS Tripmaster for details, time and meeting place! Some field trips will be posted with little notice, as some opportunities come up quickly. Check this page often for info. Some field trips may have restrictions that will prevent us from posting all the information on this website or in the newsletter. Some trip locations may only allow limited numbers of members.  This would be caused by landowner/security/insurance issues. These trips may also require advanced sign-ups. This is "The Nature of the Beast" and there is not much we can do about it. We will do everything in our power to make as many field trips available to members as possible.

Field Trip Master for 2018: Dave Shapiro E-MAIL

Please note: Some locations are remote and do not have cell phone service. Please plan accordingly.


NOTE: Emergency cancellations or changes may be necessary due to weather or other circumstances. Notifications will be posted here, and e-mails will be sent out to all club members, if these changes are necessary, by 7pm the night before the trip is scheduled. Be sure to check this web site for last-minute information before heading out for the trip! ALL TRIPS ARE WEATHER PERMITTING, and could be postponed if inclement weather is forecast.

2018  FIELD TRIP & ACTIVITY SCHEDULE: (TBA=Date/details to be announced) Sign Up Required for Limited Attendance trips.

FALL 2018 Schedule!! See Dave Shapiro for sign up/handouts/trip details!!

-Sat. Sept. 8 - Sterling Hill Picnic, Tour & Collecting Day at 10am! Tour at 11am. Blackout tour in the afternoon, so bring your UV lamps! BBQ by Jeff. Collecting all day.

-Sat. Sept. 22 - Fossil Shark Tooth collecting at Ramenessen Creek, Holmdel, NJ

-Sat. Oct. 6 - National Limestone Quarry, Middleburg & Mt.Pleasant Mills, PA. - Open to all members, no limits on attendance. BBQ afterwards at Jim Van Fleet's house nearby!! RSVP needed for head count for BBQ. See Dave or Jeff

-Sat. Oct. 20 - TRIP IS FULL!! Case Quarry, Portland, CT. SPECIAL TRIP!!! LIMITED ATTENDANCE. Sign up w/ Dave. TRIP IS FULL!!

-Sat. Oct. 27 - (Tentative Date, may change due to quarry activity) Tilcon Oxford Quarry - LIMITED ATTENDANCE. Sign up w/Dave.

-Sat. Nov. 3 - NEW LOCATION!! Hamburg Mine, Lang Shaft, High Street, Franklin, NJ - No limit on attendance. $20 donation to property owner Phil Crabb for excavations for future trips.



**Due to space limitations on this page, as of 8/2017, all of our new field trip photos will be posted on our Facebook Page!**

August 19, 2017 - 15 members were invited to attend a summer field trip to Tilcon's Oxford Quarry in White Township, NJ. Steve, the quarry manager, was again a wonderful host. Many great minerals were found, especially the large find of fine axinite crystals. Epidote, quartz, and rare black tourmaline were also found, as well as plentiful golden chalcopyrite. Of course, the obligatory stop at Hot Dog Johnny's in Buttzville followed the dig. A great day was had by all.

June 24, 2017 - Members of NoJMS attended a trip to Big Brook/ Ramenessen Creek in Holmdel, NJ to collect Shark teeth. Awaiting update on details!

June 10, 2017 - A small group of members attended a trip to Trilobite Ridge in Montague, NJ to collect trilobite and marine fossils. Collecting was good and many fossils were found. Thanks to Leon Smith, the landowner, for another fine trip! Leading the trip was Mike D. and Dave M. Also in attendance was Jess J. and others.

June 10, 2017 - 12 members attended a fun trip to Paradise Falls, in Newport, NY, for a day of Herkimer Diamond digging. The weather was great, as was our host and guide, Joel Davis. Everyone enjoyed the Hike-N-Dig, and we all came home with beautiful Herkimer Diamonds! In attendance were Dave S., Jeff W., George and Alaine M., Steve D and Dave, Dave M. and Izzy, Tim and Mark H., Jan and her guest. It was a great day and a fun trip for the group!

May 13, 2017 - 16 NoJMS members attended our FIRST EVER field trip to the Tilcon Oxford Quarry in White Township, NJ. It was a miserable rainy day, but the experience of being in the quarry for the first time, made it seem like the rain was not even there! It was an enjoyable day of collecting some of New Jersey's most desired minerals. The quarry crew had just done a fresh blast for us the day before, and we had access to the newly blasted materials. After getting used to reading the rock, members started finding specimens, including some exceptional examples of quartz crystals and deep green epidote crystals in calcite. Also found were very large masses of chalcopyrite, axinite, green actinolite, rose quartz, clear quartz crystals in marble, pyrolusite, and nice brown sphalerite crystals. Everyone went home with cool material, and soggy clothes! And, of course, the trip to Oxford would not have been complete without a stop to Hot Dog Johnny's on Rt.46 in Buttzville!! The manager of the quarry, Steve, was an awesome guy, and we had such a great time with him and his daughter, he invited us back for another trip in the future. Attending were Mike Dunton, Dave Shapiro, Jeff Wilson, Jess Jacobson, Bob Horn, Bob Allen, Dave Miller, Eric Stanchich, Eric, Jr., Bryan Davis, Johan Maertens, Steve Dougherty, Derek Yoost, Gary Moldovany, Mike Machette, and Steve Wein.

April 22, 2017 - 14 members visited the Washington Mines in Otisville, NY. A fun time was had by all. The crew visited all 6 mines. Great specimens of Galens, Sphalerite, Malachite, and Azurite were found. The weather was good and humor was rampant! Attending were Dave S., Ron S., Jess J., Dave M., Paul R., Mike D., Nina., Joe E., Jim C., George M., Alaine M., Mike W., Mike M., and Lynne S.

March 25, 2017 - Easton, Pa. - 8 members attended our annual trek to CK Williams Quarry in Easton, Pa. Many fine specimans of Eastonite, Serpentine, titanite, and other minerals were found both in the quarry and in the dumps along the river, across the road. The weather was cloudy and damp, but at least the snow was now gone, and collecting was relatively easy! Attending were Dave S., Jeff W., Mike D., Mark H., Tim H., and 3 guests.

November 27, 2016 - Several members attended a field trip to the Sparta Historical Society for a presentation on the history and people of the Limecrest Quarry in Sparta. A wonderful mineral display was presented as well as artifacts from the quarry. They also displayed a nice fluorescent mineral collection that is on permanent display in the society's museum. It was a nice day with great people. Attending were Jeff W., Dick H., Elna H., Linda L., Mark H., Tim H., and Mike M.

November 13, 2016 - Several NoJMS members attended a field trip to CK Williams Quarry in Easton, PA. Members reported finding several fine minerals including Eastonite, Zircon and others.

Nov. 6, 2016 - 15 NoJMS members attended our annual trip to Trilobite Ridge in Montague, NJ. MAny fossils were located, including a great hit of plates of trilobites located about 1/4 mile south on the ridge. Thanks to Mr. Leon Smith, who grants us permission to collect each year. After the fossil hunt, several members hiked over to the Montague Quartz site to search for quartz crystals before heading home. The weather was great and everyone had a wonderful time.

Oct. 16, 2016 - 10 NoJMS members attended a trip to visit the historic Washington Mines in Otisville, NY. We visited and collected at all 6 mines, but by far, mine #6 was the best, where we found large veins of Galena, malachite, azurite, sphalerite and quartz crystals. It was a fun day for all! Attending were Jeff W, Ron S, Jess J, Mike D, Bob A, Linda L, Gary, Dave M, Frankie A.

October 15, 2016 - A historic day!! Several NoJMS members attended a field trip with FOMS to the Lime Crest Quarry in Sparta, NJ. This was the first time in over a decade that collectors were allowed into the quarry!! Collecting was good, though the spectacular minerals of the past were not found, everyone went home with buckets full of rocks and a good feeling that we will be allowed back in the future to further explore this New Jersey treasure!! Among the attendees were Jeff W, Dave S, Mike D, Bob H, Gary M, Heather M, Linda L, and others.

October 8, 2016 - 18 members attended our bi-annual trip to National Limestone Quarries in central Pa. Members were rewarded with excellent specimens of cave flowstone, calcite crystals, fluorite, fossils, and wavellite, collected in a brand new wavellite pit, which produced oodles of great specimens. After our day of digging, Jim VanFleet again hosted our club members at his home, providing great food and friendship, and, of course his famous garage collecting!! A wonderful time was had by all! Pictures on our Facebook page!

Sept. 11, 2016 - 26 members attended our annual club picnic/mine tour and collecting day at Sterling Hill. We were treated to great food, a wonderful mine tour, all day collecting, and a blackout tour in the afternoon. We had a great time, and would all give thanks to the wonderful staff at Sterling Hill for another fine event!

August 28, 2016 - 8 members attended a field trip to Paradise Falls, a private, pay-to-dig Herkimer Diamond claim, in Middleville, NY. Our hosts were gracious and welcoming, and we had an incredible time. Herkimer diamonds were everywhere, and relatively easy to collect!! Everyone who attended went home with lots of beautiful Herks, and as a bonus, about half fluoresced under SW UV light!! Attendees were Jeff W, Ron S., Jess J., Bryan D., Dave M., Paul R., Len G., and Steve D. Thanks to our wonderful hosts Billie Jo and Joel Davis.

July 23, 2016 - 12 members attended a field trip to Ace of Diamonds Mine in Newport, NY for Herkimer Diamond collecting, led by club president, Jeff Wilson.  The heat was on!! Temps were near 90, but a steady breeze all day kept it tolerable. Members had a blast collecting in the main pit, as well as special access to the commercial pit on top of the mountain, and a fresh blast pile at the north end of the property. Many great specimens were collected. We also got to use the brand new 100 foot long sluice to sift for crystals. It was really fun finding the smaller diamonds in the loose dirt from around the property!

Jeff's first big find

Jeff's find of the day, a perfect Herkimer Diamond in Matrix!

Nicole working the pile for Herks

Steve D. working the fresh blast as Mark Hollister observes Dad, Tim in the background

May 7, 2016 - 32 members braved the 3 hour drive to Central Pennsylvania to enjoy another Annual Field Trip to National Limestone Quarries. Again, our members were treated to incredible collecting at both quarries.  Owner Eric Stahl once again was a gracious host, and made many great collecting opportunities available tom our group. Members collected superb specimens of Travertine Flowstone, Calcite, Orange Calcite, Strontianite, and Fluorite at the Middleburg Quarry, and Calcite, Fluorite, Fossils, and Wavellite were collected at the Mount Pleasant Mills Quarry. Then, after collecting, our group was again treated to a wonderful picnic at the home of Jim Van Fleet, along with the usual garage collecting and tour of Jim's incredible collection of Franklin Fluorescent Minerals. We also enjoyed the thrill of obtaining the world's best pies from Ard's Farm in Lewisburg. We lucked out with great weather, and literally "Truckloads" of rocks to come home with. New Jersey definitely gained some weight from this trip!!! (Rocks I am referring to... Not the weight we all gained from eating the pies....) It was a GREAT trip!!!

Members hitting the quarry in Middleburg.

Collectors looking for fluorite along the edge of the pit, as in the distance, others work on the travertine boulders placed in a group for our members to break apart. Great collecting for all!

April 30, 2016 - 15 members attended a very special NY State field trip to 2 amazing localities! The day started with an exclusive tour of the Tilcon Tompkins Cove Quarry in Stony Point, NY. After a safety meeting, we were driven to the main pit to collect. Members collected specimens of pyrite, chalcopyrite, and calcite crystals. The chalcopyrite was abundant, with much of it showing a copper to bronze color. The host rock was a heavily brecciated limestone with voids filled by calcite.  The collecting was interesting, and the members had a great visit. Afterwards, we moved north to Fort Montgomery, to the old Mine Dock, to collect a variety of minerals along the banks of the scenic Hudson River, which included several that are unique to this locality. Minerals found included 3-d Magnetite w/calcite, diopside, serpentine, magnetic mica, red quartz, hornblende, and more. Collectors were treated with several beautiful ships passing by on the river, and a few CSX freight trains passing within yards of the collecting location. It was a blast, and everyone had a wonderful time!

Collectors hitting the piles at the Tilcon Quarry

The gang at the quarry entrance

A passing CSX freight train crew blows their horn as excited collectors wave a big NoJMS Hello!

Club members Steve D. and Paul R. look for magnetite with Anthony's Nose looming in the background, and an Amtrak train passing below the Bear Mountain Bridge.

March 26, 2016 - 19 members attended a field trip to 2 classic Northwest NJ collecting sites. First, we collected quartz crystals at the quartz site in Montague. Everyone had a great time exploring the hill, and some really nice clusters and individual specimens were collected. Dave (DudeDave) found a very nice cluster with clean points! Then, after a short McD's lunch break, we all headed a short distance away, and did some rock garden collecting at Jeff's house! That was fun, and everyone got some cool specimens! Then, our eagerly anticipated return to Trilobite Ridge! Jess, John B. and Jeff walked to a distant point on the ridge and found some incredible fossil plates, containing numerous Trilobites. Paul R. found an incredible fossil coral piece, one of the best I've seen! Many other fossils were collected, including a large section of Ammonite recovered by George and Alaine. It was an incredibly fun trip! Thanks to the landowner, Leon, who allowed us access to the ridge!!

The group in front of the Montague sign. WOW!! The gas is under $2!!! Now off to collect!

Eager collectors head up the hill!

A portion of our group at the end of the day, pose for a group shot on Trilobite Ridge, with High Point Monument in the background. A great day it was.

Nov. 22, 2015 - 10 club members ventured out to "Agate Hill" in Wesley Hills, New York, near Suffern in Rockland County, to hunt for Agate and quartz crystals. Club member Herschel Freidman led the expidition and we arrived at the site after a 15 minute hike. The location is in a section of woods, landlocked between several housing developments.  In the beginning, things went slow, but after a while, everyone was finding great specimens of blue, white, yellow and green banded agate on basalt matrix, as well as clear, yellow, white, and green quartz crystals, and white and deep green chalcedony, all on the same basalt matrix. Also found was a rare and beautiful mineral, Pumpellyite, which is a dark aqua blue colored spherical crystal in vugs and voids between the chalcedony coatings on the basalt.  Lisa B. found a super big banded agate boulder which was broken down to manageable pieces, Steve D. found beautiful quartz crystals, Jeff W., Frank A., Dave S., Tim and Mark found really beautiful golden quartz and blue/white agates in "the honey hole", and others found specimens that were equally as nice across the face of the hill. Everyone went home with full buckets and an amazing understanding on how unique this special location is. The trip was great, and a special thanks goes out to Herschel Freidman for making the arrangements, and to Sol Rosenberg, who allowed us to access the location through his property.

Member Lisa B. holding a large agate specimen she broke apart

Group shot at the Agate Hill site

The group, all sporting their hats, eager to get going at the meeting place, Willow Tree Park.

A 2.5" thick banded agate on basalt matrix, found by Jeff W

A nice agate topped by quartz crystals found by Jeff W

Nov. 14, 2015 - 7 members attended our annual NE Pennsylvania trip to the Lackawanna Coal Mine, Carbondale Fossil Site, and the Greentown 84 Country Store for a fun day of collecting and history. On this day, one member found an incredibly huge calamites specimen, one of the biggest we've ever seen. Some great fluorescent specimens were found at the country store as well. A fun day was had by all!

Nov. 7, 2015 - 12 Members attended our annual trip to the Montague, NJ quartz crystal site. It was a fun day of crystal hunting at this classic location. The weather was perfect, and the fall morning hike was exceptionally nice. The crystal finds were plentiful with frank A. and Jeff finding a few better quality specimens. But everyone went home with some nice specimens and we all had a few laughs along the way!

Club members pose in front of the sign welcoming all to Montague, along Rt.23. This year, the gas is only $2.19!!

Field trip leader Dave Shapiro chatting it up with members who are scattered all over the hill.

October 17, 2015 - 29 club members made the 3 hour drive to central Pennsylvania, to again experience the magic of National Limestone Quarries. And it was worth every mile! Again this year, owner Eric Stahl opened his 2 quarries to our club for a full day of collecting. And again, we were not disappointed. The weather was cool and crisp, and partly sunny, making collecting conditions perfect. And the minerals were popping all over!! Many magnificent finds of calcite, quartz, and fluorite were found in the Middleburg quarry, along with the beautiful and interesting calcite flowstone, which everyone took home this fine day. Then we moved on to Mt.Pleasant Mills, where members collected fossils, beautiful green wavellite, nice, clear calcite crystals, golden calcite, fluorite, and numerous specimens of the elusive strontianite, which were recovered again this year. Then, as tradition holds, we all headed over to Jim Van Fleet's house, where we again enjoyed a fine bar-b-que, Ard's pies, Jim's home made apple crisp, and a wonderful tour of Jim's personal fluorescent collection. And of course, our last collecting trip of the day, fluorescent mineral collecting in Jim's garage!! Jim and his wife again opened their home to our club, and we could not thank him enough. Everyone had a wonderful time, and are already looking forward to next year's trip!!!

Club member Frank A. holding a massive calcite boulder with numerous voids and vugs filled with beautiful clear calcite crystals in the Middleburg Quarry.

Members collecting from the massive travertine boulders of cave calcite flowstone, as seen from the other side of the quarry. MANY great specimens were collected this fun day.

September 12, 2015 - About 35 club members attended our annual club picnic and collecting trip to Sterling Hill Mine. The weather was good, except for one early afternoon shower. The staff at Sterling provided a museum tour in the morning, some members went collecting on the mine dumps, then Chef Jeff whipped up some tasty bar-b-que. Then with bellies full, Our club members got a special treat of a FULL blackout tour of the entire mine and all the tunnels! Our tour leader, Jeff Winkler, did an incredible job, and showed everyone some great formations, and incredible fluorescence. It was a real treat!!! A BIG thanks goes to the staff of Sterling Hill Mine for another great day!

Glowing minerals were found throughout the mine!

August 22, 2015 - 22 club members attended our annual trip to Big Brook to dig for fossil shark teeth. Recent storms moved around the gravel bars in the brook a bit, and there seemed to be fewer teeth found than in the past. Derek and Johan shared their expertise with attendees. But the weather could not have been better, and everyone had a great time. Afterwards, many of our members went to KC Dalby's house and attended the Greater NJ Rock Swap, picnic and pool party! We had a blast!!! A special thanks goes to KC Dalby who was a gracious host. Many rocks were bought/sold/traded, great food was had, and the kids (Alan too) had a great time in the pool. It was a great day, and rounded up a super summer!

Big Brook is full of NoJMS members as Johan Maertens makes a video of the trip.

Field trip leader Dave Shapiro checks in on the members as they sift thru the brook

Derek, Johan and Steve discuss minerals at the Rock Swap

Jeff and Mike raid the food tent at the Rock Swap. Thanks to KC Dalby for a great time!!

August 1 & 2, 2015 - Several club members headed up to Herkimer, NY for a weekend of mining Herkimer Diamonds at the Ace of Diamonds Mine. It was a great trip, and many nice Herks were found. In attendance were: Dave Shapiro, Frank Arrojado, Ron Schulz, Lisa Brown, and others.

Frank and Ron work on a big boulder at Ace

Ron shows off a great Herkimer Diamond he broke from a large rock

June 27, 2015 - 8 club members went shark tooth collecting at Big Brook in Colt's Neck, NJ. We were joined by a few members of the Poughkeepsie, NY club. We got in a couple hours of fun before the skies opened up. Everyone had a great day and many nice specimens of fossil sharks teeth were collected. A few members continued on to Ramenessen Creek and collected that location as well(in the rain!).

May 22, 2015 - 12 members were afforded the rare opportunity to visit a working quarry in Nanuet, NY. Again, a very interesting tour was offered, and some light collecting was done. A jitney bus had to be hired to bring members into the quarry, by request of the quarry management. It actually made it easier as everyone was able to park in a nearby mall and hop the bus to the quarry! Members who attended reported that it was a great trip.

May 9, 2015 - 10 members attended a trip to Kurtz Quarry in Denver, Pa. along with members of the Friends of Minerology. The trip was arranged by KC Dalby. The trip was a lot of fun, and the quarry tour was very informative. Collecting was light, and minerals sparse, but everyone got to see a new quarry, and had fun on the trip! On the way back, several members stopped in at Ramenessen Creek in Colt's Neck, NJ and did some shark tooth collecting.

Nov. 15, 2014 - Northeast Pennsylvania Roundup! 13 Club members attended this fun trip on a cold and blustery day, but a great time was had by everyone. After driving to Scranton, Pa, our group enjoyed a cool underground tour of the Lackawanna Coal Mine, led by miner Lee, who told stories and explained the history and challenges of underground coal mining in the 19th and 20th centuries in Pennsylvania. It was a great tour that everyone enjoyed. We then drove to nearby Carbondale, where we had lunch and then collected various plant fossils in shale from the waste pile of the Carbondale strip mine. Many great fern and calamites fossils were collected as well as a couple fossilized seed pods and grasses, as well as some iron nodules and coal specimens. Lastly, we drove to Greentown and visited the 84 Country Store. Well, to say the least, this was the most AWESOME part of the trip!!!! Behind the store, there are tens of thousands of mineral and fossil specimens for sale. Owner Craig was giving BEYOND AMAZING deals to our members, and everyone walked out with their arms full, buckets full, and boxes full of great specimens at prices that we found hard to believe!!! Here are just a few finds that members hauled home from the Country Store that were "out of this world" and had everyone clamoring to find more!: An amazing array of spectacular Franklin specimens (we stayed well after dark to light'em up with the UV lights) including some of the better Hardystonite specimens we have seen, and a few "scores!", stunning Colorado amazonites, Sapphires in matrix from Limecrest Quarry, huge plates of amazingly intricate selenites, Chalcopyrite cubes in schist from central Pennsylvania,  some very unique black quartz crystals, lapidary material galore, beautiful agates from Michigan and elsewhere, and finally, a large stunning plate of beautiful deep green malachite. A totally unreal experience, and we were all thankful to Craig and the wonderful staff at the Greentown Country Store! Attending this cool trip were: Jeff Wilson, trip leader, Derek Yoost, Diana Tasco, Bob Allen, Dave Shapiro, Stan Shapiro, Brian Voorman, Lisa Brown, Glenn Orzepowski, Li-Wan Orzepowski, Alaine Mack, George Mack, and Mike Dunton.

NoJMS club members at the Coal Mine Entrance

NoJMS members deep underground during the tour!

Fossil collectors eagerly scouring the tailings pile at the Carbondale Strip Mine

Tens of thousands of specimens waiting NoJMS members to start picking at the Greentown Country Store!

October 25, 2014 - A return trip to National Limestone Quarries in Central Pennsylvania! - 26 club  members made the long drive out to the National Limestone Quarries in Perry County, Pennsylvania, and were well rewarded with superb weather conditions, and another world-class collecting trip!! Quarry owner, Eric Stahl, opened his quarries to our club again, and welcomed us with news of new mineral finds, and great collecting opportunities awaiting us! After our safety meeting at the Middleburg quarry office, members hit the quarry and collected absolutely amazing fluorite specimens, with some of the best fluorites we have ever seen from this location, going home in collector's buckets. Incredible specimens of cave flowstone and calcite formations were collected, including some extremely rare and beautiful pure white flowstone that fluoresces bright light blue under SW UV!!! Eric made sure we had plenty of fresh material to work with. Returning members were amazed by the amount of work that had been done in the quarry since our June visit. A large, new pit, just below the flowstone ledge, produced some of the best fluorites found to date, and even more flowstone was unearthed during new excavations on the north wall. We really didn't want to leave!! After some photos at the giant stalactite, and a quick lunch break, we moved to Mt.Pleasant Mills and were again treated to some surprises. Eric's crew had blasted more off the calcite wall in the main pit, and a large quantity of calcites and strontianites were laying all over the pit floor, allowing everyone to collect great specimens. Strontianite was everywhere, and nearly everyone got great specimens. Others collected stunning calcite crystals from the base of the walls. After rescuing Bob Allen from a muddy situation, we then we moved up to the wavellite pit, where recent excavating by the NLQ crew had brought up tons of wavellite and fossils out of the new 6 foot deep pit! Members had no problem finding numerous quality specimens. After we returned to the lower pit and gathered up a few more calcites, we all headed over to club member Jim Van Fleet's house to take part in yet another SUPERB bar-b-que, featuring Jim's top-notch angus burgers, kielbasa, hot dogs, roasted eggplant(unbelieveably good), and bbq portabello mushrooms, along with some of the best homemade chili I have ever tasted! And, of course, we had our final collecting trip of the day, inside Jim's garage, where members were allowed to pick specimens from Jim's huge collection of Franklin, NJ Fluorescent minerals! What a great day! I can not say it enough. We truly are in debt, and owe a huge Thank-You to Eric Stahl of NLQ, and Jim Van Fleet, for making us all feel welcome, and at home, and for providing us the best field trip of the year! Attendees on this fine trip were: Jeff Wilson (TripMaster), Dave Shapiro (Future Tripmaster), Jim Van Fleet, Elizabeth Van Fleet, Steve Wien, Steve Dougherty, Nick Caradonna, Vito Kulemannis, Efsteritios Kulemannis, Ray Clark, Kathy Clark, Bob Allen, Derek Yoost, Diana Tasco, Mike Dunton, Eric Talley, Tim Hollister, Mark Hollister, Chris Keller, Brian Voorman, Lisa Brown, Katherine Lesher, Elizabeth Glass, James Currie, George Mack, Alaine Mack.

Club members get ready to hit the quarry as Eric Stahl, quarry owner points out the locations of various minerals from in his car.

Jeff, Dave and Steve pose in front of a giant stalactite unearthed by NLQ crews. This piece reportedly weighs over 7 tons!

Club members scour the wavellite pit for fossils and wavellite specimens.

Members "garage collecting" fluorescent minerals at Jim Van Fleet's house

Jim Van Fleet monitoring the food on the grill as members enjoy the afternoon in Jim's back yard. It was a wonderful day, and another world-class NoJMS field trip!!!!

September 21, 2014 - Field trip/Club Picnic to Sterling Hill.  Almost 40 club members attended this great annual event. The weather was nice, and our club was treated to even more activities than ever! Besides the great food, cooked by Chef Jeff, members were treated to tours throughout the day to all different areas of the Sterling Hill facility! Bill Kroth led a mine tour early. Then Ron from DVESS led the club on a tour of the rarely seen Trotter Tunnel! Then, the club split into 2 groups. One group headed to the Oreck Museum where Jeff and Bill led a fun tour of the Oreck Collection. The other group was led on a tour of the Upper Mill and Conveyor by Jeff Winkler of DVESS. Then, Bill Kroth led a mine blackout tour, where members were treated to a total UV tour of the mine, which is truly amazing! A great day was had by all! THANK YOU to everyone at the Sterling Hill Mine, and to Jeff Winkler and Ron from the Delaware Valley Earth Sciences Society for giving us the tour opportunities and a wonderful club picnic!

August 30, 2014 - 6 members and 2 guests attended this fun trip back to Big Brook! Lots of shark teeth and fossils were found by everyone. Several large goblin shark teeth were found by Jeff, Marilyn, and Herb as the rest of the group sifted through the gravels on this warm late summer day. The trip was led by Derek Yoost and Mike Machette. Also in atendance were Jeff W., Kathy O., Marilyn O., Steve, Herb and George. 

Marilyn, Kathy and Derek working the gravel bar

Herb and Steve watch Derek pull a tooth from his sifter

Mike M. examines his screen

Jeff's "haul" from the brook!

June 28, 2014 - Big Brook, NJ - 21 members attended this trip on a perfect early summer day for a fun morning and early afternoon of sifting through the gravel beds of Big Brook looking for fossil sharks teeth and more. Numerous species of sharks teeth were found by collectors and a fun time was had by everyone! One member (yours truly) found a very rare mosasaur tooth! We will be returning to Big Brook again in late August with hopes of finding even more great New Jersey fossils! Attending were: Jeff Wilson, your tripmaster; Derek Yoost, your fossil expert; Mike Machette, Jim & Anne Wilson, Diana Tasco, Joe & Linda Marciniak, The Clark Family, The Spiegelglas Family, Jim & Mark Hollister, and several additional members who joined the group in the brook later.

Club members pose for our group photo under the Boundary Rd. Bridge in Big Brook.

Derek Yoost gives sifting lesson to the group.

Attendees spread out through the brook and begin the hunting!

Jeff's finds, including a rare Mosasaur tooth!! (Top Left)

Close-up of the Mosasaur tooth, found by Jeff Wilson.

June 7, 2014 - National Limestone Quarries, Middleburg and Mt. Pleasant Mills, Pa. - 25 members made the 3 hour trip out to central Pennsylvania and were well rewarded for the driving effort! The first stop was the National Limestone Quarry in Middleburg. At the quarry, eager collectors were treated to great specimens of deep purple fluorite, galena, red and orange quartz crystals, white quartz crystals with blood red veins,  sulfur,  several different varieties of calcite including cubic, bladed and dogtooth crystals, and the most amazing of all, golden calcite flowstone, excavated from a collapsed cavern located within the quarry. 10-ton stalagmites and stalagtites were placed along the road in the quarry and massive slabs and chunks of golden flowstone, comprised of calcite, were placed for us to collect from.  Much of the flowstone was tightly banded and quite colorful, while other specimens were solid calcite, and others were comprised of tightly packed dogtooth crystals, that will make your jaw drop when viewed under a loupe. This was so special to us, because when would rockhounds EVER get to collect cave flowstone? And the material was so unique and beautiful, some of us could not get enough!!! Then, we moved to the Mt. Pleasant Mills quarry, where members collected fossils, wavellite, and large amounts of cubic golden, and colorless dogtooth calcite crystals, as well as a couple specimens of strontianite. With strained springs and shock absorbers, fully loaded cars and SUV's driven by totally exhausted collectors, headed to Mifflinburg and enjoyed a superb Bar-B-Que and garage collecting trip at Jim Van Fleet's home. Jim and his wife shared their hospitality with NoJMS members as collecting stories, jokes, and many laughs were enjoyed by all. Oh, and those fresh strawberries!!!!!! What a day!!!! This was by far the best field trip I have been involved in with our club, and I can't wait for our next trip!! A great big thanks goes to Mr. Eric Stahl of Nat'l Limestone, and Jim Van Fleet and his family for making our day so special! Attendees were: Jeff Wilson, tripmaster, Jess Jacobsen, Ron Schulz, Bill Archer, Mike Machette, Dave Shapiro, Laura Schmeltz, Nicole Rios, Julia Rios, Steve Dougherty, Joy Edgington, Frank Stranski, Alaine Mack, George Mack, Joe Marciniak, Linda Marciniak, Rhianna, Michael, Brendan, and Carol Wasilewski, Mike Dunton, Rich Rosa, Jen Rosa, Ray Clark, Kathy Clark, and Bob Allen.

Club members arrive at the quarry in Middleburg and prepare to start collecting. The machinery working on the hill behind the cars is preparing the flowstone specimens for our group to collect from.

Club members wait to sign in and hit the rocks!

Board member Jess Jacobsen points out some promising geology and heads up to the quartz veins.

Club members chat it up on Jim's front porch, enjoying the shade and each other's company.

A club member shows off her eye-catching glittery hard hat!

Jim Van Fleet manning the grill as Dave Shapiro grabs a drink. What a wonderful day for NoJMS members in Central Pennsylvania!!!

November 10, 2013 - Field trip to the Montague, NJ quartz crystal locality - 20 members attended this fun trip. After a short hike and geology talk, members ascended the mountain to search for quartz crystals. The day started off beautiful and sunny, with temps around 55 degrees. But by the time we arrived at the site and began collecting, the clouds rolled in, and before too long, the dreaded raindrops began falling. But everyone who attended found crystals, and even though the trip was cut a bit short, we all still had a great time.

Club members pose in front of the Welcome To Montague sign

Attendees scour the rubble picking out crystals

Looking down from the top of the site as attendees dig for crystals

September 21, 2013 - Annual Sterling Hill Field Trip & Club Picnic - About 35 members attended this great event which featured museum tours, mine tours, and a bonus upper mill tour, as well as some collecting and great BBQ. The weather was cool and breezy, with the sun going in and out of the clouds. members were allowed extra time to explore the museums at SHMM this trip, which proved to be very popular. Members of DVESS joined us for a tour of the upper mill facilities and conveyors, with the tour led by a member of the DVESS. It was a great day. Thanks to Bill Kroth, president of the SHMM, for allowing us these extra features for our day.

Jeff manning the grill

Members at the Upper Mill facility

Members explore the main conveyor which shoots out across the sky from the Upper Mill to the loading bins. The views from here  are amazing!

The incredible view from the main conveyor.

June 29, 2013 - The NoJMS visited Big Brook along with members from 2 other NJ clubs. 31 collectors in total were in our group, as Derek Yoost again was the fossil guru on our expedition. Members sifted thru the stream bed searching for fossil shark teeth, belemites, bone fragments, and other relics from the past. Hurricane Sandy wreaked some havoc on Big Brook, bringing down many large trees across the brook, making navigating the area at times tricky, but we were able to successfully navigate the streambed and have a very fun and enjoyable day. We searched the section upstream from the Boundary Road bridge, as well as the section below the preserve parking area where some amazing belemites and oyster shells were unearthed. NoJMS members in attendance were: Trip leaders Jeff Wilson and Derek Yoost, Diana Tasco, Eric Stanchich, Eric Stanchich Jr., Bob Endres, Esther Endres, George Simoni, Anna Simoni, Dave Shapiro, John Rendiza, Raina Rendiza, Glenn Orzepowski, Li-Wan Chia, Isabella Lyons, Michael Lyons, Lina Chen and her 2 children, as well as 5 members from the Mid-Hudson Gem & Mineral Society of Poughkeepsie, NY, and 6 members of the Delaware Valley Earth Sciences Society.

Jeffs assortment of sharks teeth, belemites, and bone fragment from this successful day.

Members sifting through stream gravels searching for fossil treasures

Eric S. and other members scanning their screens for fossils

Jeff W. sitting in the sun with his screen

Derek and Mike working the streambed

Glenn and Li-Wan carefully examining their screen

Collectors chatting it up in the brook!


June 8, 2013 - 12 club members participated in our field trip to National Limestone Quarry in Mt.Pleasant Mills, Pa. The weather was picture perfect, about 72 degrees and partly cloudy, which made for optimal collecting conditions in the quarry. Eric Stahl, owner, had his crew blast some new material for us, as well as move some recent rockfalls away from the highwall so that we could pick over the piles, out of harm's way. Some incredible specimens were recovered in the main pit, as well as from the wavellite outcrop at the top of the quarry. This year, an abundance of great brachiopod fossils were pulled from the top pit, as well as turquoise and lots of wavellites. Some great pockets and plates of calcites, strontianites, and fluorites were recovered from the lower pits. Many of the calcite vugs recovered fluoresced a bright pale yellow. Member Frank Stanski found a wonderful vug of calcite coated with several blooms of strontianite crystals. Dan Irwin recovered a beautiful vug of calcites about the size of a basketball. After 5 hours of collecting fun, we drove to club member Jim VanFleet's home, a few towns away, for a garage treasure hunt, where many great Franklin Fluorescent specimens were taken home by happy members, an amazing tour of Jim's collection of Franklin Fluorescents in "The Cellar", as well as some superb Bar-B-Que being provided by Jim and his wife. We thank them for their gracious hospitality in welcoming club members into their home for the second year in a row. This was a banner day and an exciting and fun trip for all. Members in attendance: Jeff Wilson (Tripmaster), Bob Allen, George Mack, Alaine Mack, Sara Mazza, Bill Archer, Frank Stanski, Mike Machette, Dan Irwin, Steve Wein, Rolf Schudel, and Dave Shapiro.

NoJMS Members in front of the High Wall at National Limestone Quarry, June 8, 2013

Members break apart boulders in search of vugs of calcite and strontianite crystals.

Sept. 22, 2012 - We held our annual picnic/collecting trip to Sterling Hill Mining Museum. The weather was cool and windy, with some breaks of sun. Approx. 35 members attended the festivities. The day began with the presentation of the EFMLS Convention awards to President Ron Schulz, and distribution of some Pennsylvania Mineral posters printed by the Central Pennsylvania Rock and Mineral Club. We then discussed some future endeavors, and enjoyed  some light swapping/selling. This was followed by a mine & museum tour, and then some good Bar-b-Que, wrapping up with some collecting in the mine dumps and pits. Chef Jeff was the grillmaster this time around, and the mine tour was led by the Sterling Hill Mine Master, Dick Hauck!! Some very nice specimens were collected by members and everyone great time!

June 23, 2012 - 26 fossil enthusiasts attended our annual Big Brook Field Trip. The weather was gorgeous! The stream conditions were ideal for collecting and this large and enthusiastic group had a great time! Another area mineral club was invited to join us on our fossil hunt today. Our group for this trip consisted of 13 members from NoJMS, and another 13 members of the Mid-Hudson Valley (Poughkeepsie) Gem & Mineral Society. Derek Yoost was our guide as we searched the gravel bars for fossilized shark's teeth and other treasures. During last year's trip, we collected a gravel bar approx. 1/4 mile upstream from the Boundary Road bridge. Because of the hurricane last August, the stream has been completely "redesigned" and the gravel bars that were located in one place before the storm, are now located hundreds of yards away. So, after some exploration and experimentation, a nice stretch of gravel was located and collecting began. Many teeth were collected today, as well as bone fragments and belemites, and, as a big surprise, 2 complete and near perfect indian arrowheads were found in the brook as well! Everyone left with big smiles on their faces.  Attending NoJMS members were: Jeff Wilson (Tripmaster), Derek Yoost (Our Faithful Guide), Mike Machette, Diana Tasco, Johnathan Spieglas, David Spieglas, Phyliss Spieglas, Ray Harmon, Frank Arrojado, Glenn Orzepowski, Steve Wein, Li-Wan Chia, Dave Shapiro, and MHVGMS members: The Pahucki Family, Ernesto and Matthew Martinez, April DeYoung, Doug Stuart, Devin & Maria Kren, Marion Jackson, and Willie Stedner.

Our big group decended into Big Brook on this beautiful sunny day in search of shark teeth and other fossil goodies!

Derek Yoost explains how to sift and collect teeth

Group members can be seen as far as the eye can see down the brook!

A junior member sitting comfortably in the water with a screen full of gravel to search through.

June 2, 2012 - 20 NoJMS members and 2 Junior members attended our field trip to National Limestone Quarry in Mount Pleasant Mills, Pennsylvania, just north of Harrisburg. The trip took 2 hours and 40 minutes and was worth every mile! The weather was spectacular, partly cloudy and 70 degrees, and the collecting was great. After a safety meeting and "orientation", we were allowed full access to the entire quarry property. Jim VanFleet showed members different areas to find the different minerals. The variety of minerals and fossils made the collecting very interesting. On one side of the property was an exposure where numerous marine fossils were found right alongside veins of rich green wavellite. Members found many excellent wavellite specimens. Many specimens had the fossils and wavellite right on the same specimen! In the main pit of the quarry, calcite and quartz was found, and in front, collectors found strontianite, large double-terminated calcite crystals, calcite xl plates, deep purple fluorite and quartz crystals. After collecting ended, we left the quarry and proceeded to nearby Mifflinburg, where Jim VanFleet graciously hosted a club bar-b-que picnic, a mineral display of some of his collection, and a special "garage collecting trip" where members were allowed to pick from numerous crates of his Franklin Mineral Collection and bring home whatever they wanted!!! What a memorable day it was, especially since it will be the last time any club will have access to this unique and special place. Attending were: Jeff Wilson - Tripmaster, Jim VanFleet - Host, Ron Schulz, Bryan Davis, Laura Brecka, Jess Jacobsen, Gary Muldovany, Donna Miller, Pat Hintz, Bob Allen, Bob Santee, Stan Shapiro, Dave Shapiro, Steve Wien, Charles Gaglio, Ken St. John and his 2 children, Steven Kowalski, Arthur Kowalsus, James Currie,and Sam Linton.

Jim VanFleet explains what to look for with some gorgeous country scenery as a backdrop.

Bryan Davis and Bob Santee explore one of many rock piles filled with mineral rich boulders as Chuck Gaglio takes a break from collecting.

The Muldovany's working yet another pile of mineral-rich boulders.

There were rock piles everywhere to be explored. Here, NoJMS members look for minerals in a large pile near the main gate.

On the mountainside behind the quarry is the wavellite/fossil exposure where members could drive right to the collecting spot and break open boulders loaded with marine fossils and veins of green wavellite.

Club members Sam Linton, Ron Schulz, Laura Brecka, Dave Shapiro, Bryan Davis and Chuck Gaglio socialize after a great meal served up by Jim VanFleet.

Club members got to go "Garage Collecting" at Jim's house! Here, Bob Santee, Stan Shapiro and Donna Miller search for specimens. Jim put out dozens and dozens of flats of minerals for members to "collect" from!!! Jim also set up a great mineral display inside his home for members to enjoy.

Bryan Davis, Ron Schulz and Jim Van Fleet relax in the shade and ID some minerals on this AWESOME day in Pennsylvania!!!

A SPECIAL THANK YOU goes out to Jim VanFleet for providing NoJMS with not only a great collecting venue, genuine hospitality, and a darn good time at his home.

May 5, 2012 - 27 NOJMS members attended a field trip to Amity, NY. The weather was cloudy and about 65 degrees, which made for perfect collecting conditions. Glenn Rhein graciously opened his property in Amity, NY to our club for a fun and exciting day of exploring and collecting a variety of minerals, including some exceptional flourescents found only in this location. Members were allowed to explore the Rhein property, and, depending on where you were, various groups of minerals could be collected. Glenn set up a darkroom in his garage and helped identify the numerous mineral species found by members. Collected today were Ruby Spinel, Fluoredenite, Tremolite, Scapolite, Titanite, Spinel, Pargasite, Diopside, and numerous other minerals. We had 3 new members join and attend as well as a few of our junior members! Attendees were: Jeff Wilson (Tripmaster), The Wien Family, Frank Arrojado, Stan Shapiro, Bob Santee, Bob Allen, Andy Abdul, Al VanErde, Bill Archer, Mike Machette, David Shapiro, Glenn Salsbury, Jim VanFleet, Emil Marin, Gary & Heather Muldovany, Rolf Schudel, Petra Chirco, Ken St.John, Suzi Campbell, Charles Gaglio, Anthony Lichota, Gordon Czop, Olivia Huang.

Glenn Rhein gives the crowd some helpful hints and some guidelines to make the collecting day a great one! Glenn shows examples of minerals that can be found, right on his rock wall.

Eager NOJMS  members head into the woods looking for some of those famous and beautiful Amity minerals!

David Shapiro taking swings at the boulder as Bob Santee examines a find.

Glenn Rhein(R) explains a mineral to a member as Jim VanFleet looks on.

Rolf Schudel heads back to get more tools as Gary Muldovany and several other members examine various minerals.

Closely examining and documenting mineral finds is very important as Suzie Campbell(R) and Heather Muldovany(L) are doing here.

Mar. 17, 2012 - 4 NOJMS club members attended a volunteer clean up of the trailhead and path leading to the Montague Quartz Crystal site. This effort was started on MinDat By David Bernstein, a concerned Rockhound, and of course, NoJMS was glad to pitch in! 6 55-gal. bags of garbage were collected and the area looks pristine afterwards. Thanks to all who helped!! Then, of course, we collected quartz crystals for a couple of hours afterward. Attending NoJMS members were Jeff Wilson, Gary Muldovany, Petra Chirco and Charles Gaglia.

NoJMS members Jeff Wilson and Gary Moldovany taking a breather alongside bags loaded with litter along Rt.23. Photo by David Bernstein.

March 14, 2012 - 4 NOJMS members who missed the original Trilobite Ridge field trip in November, went to Trilobite Ridge in Montague for some fossil collecting. Some very nice specimens were collected and a great time was had. Attending were: Bob Allen, Bob Santee, Ralph Dames, and Jeff Wilson

NoJMS members on Trilobite Ridge with High Point Monument in the background

Bob Santee working to free a Trilobite from its rocky home

Bob Allen shows us a nice Trilo Fossil he unearthed along the ridge.

2 slabs just chock-full of fossils unearthed by Bob Santee

A superb Trilobite fossil unearthed by Bob Santee

November 5 & 6, 2011 - Sussex County Geology Weekend! 2 seperate field trips organized and attended by members of 2 different NJ Clubs ended up being one of the most enjoyable and successful field trip weekends in North Jersey in a very long time! We were greeted with chilly but spectacular weather and large turnouts of eager rockhounds, just itching for something NEW and they were rewarded with 2 superb field trips! The Franklin Geology Tour led by Earl Verbeek and hosted by FOMS was attended by over 30 people, and the Montague Day field trip was led by Jeff Wilson and hosted by NoJMS and was attended by 21 members!!
Part 1 of the weekend started off bright and early Saturday morning with a meeting and group photo at the Franklin Mineral Museum. The caravan then headed to stop #1, the Emerald Road road cut in Hamburg, NJ where Dr. Verbeek explained the connections of the various geologic formations and pointed out some interesting mineralization, including vugs of quartz, calcite, and other minerals. Some of the group collected small specimens from this location.

Dr. Verbeek describing the geology of the Emerald Road rock cut.
We then headed down Wheatsworth Road to stop #2 in the Ballyowen Development where we saw what is "the best preserved Stromatolite fossil exposure in the world". Dr. Verbeek explained how this bedding plane became exposed and how glaciers had a great deal to do with the exposures in the area.

The world famous and totally INCREDIBLE Hamburg, NJ Stromatolite exposure.

Dr. Verbeek explaining the world of Stromatolites.

The tour group exploring the glacial scour on the rocks adjascent to the Stromatolite exposure. Can anyone correctly pronounce the word "Oolites"?
The last stop of the tour brought us to the McAfee section of Vernon Township, and 2 old stone quarries. We explored the minerology of the area and saw some amazing solution caves that were formed in the rock.

Bob Allen grills Earl about the dikes and veins on the rockface behind him as Sarna Strom, Ron Schulz, Andy Abdul, Mike Pierce, and others look on.

NoJMS members who attended the Franklin Tour: Jeff Wilson, Ron Schulz, Bryan Davis, Sarna Strom, Bob Allen, Barry Clark, Kay Clark, and Andy Abdul, along with about 20 FOMS members.

After the saturday evening Franklin UV dig, everyone got a well-deserved extra hour of sleep, and then on Sunday, we headed to part 2 of the Sussex County Geology tour, a trip to 2 famous sites in Montague, "The TOP of New Jersey".

After the day's meet-up and photo session, we headed towards stop #1, which is the Montague Quartz crystal site.

Some of the early arrivals pose at the Montague welcome sign. This portion of the trip was attended by a total of 21 club members, by far, our best and biggest field trip yet!
After a beautiful hike along Mill Creek to get to the quartz site, as well as a few points of interest stops, the group arrived ready to collect at the crystal location. After navigating the mountain, the club members had a blast digging around for those lovely Jersey gems, while being treated to some incredible fall scenery. We shared a lot of laughs, crystals, and some light-hearted diggs as the group sifted through the mountain's quartz deposit.

Mike Machette sticks his head up out of a hole as other club members get to the top.
Everyons collected plenty of quartz this sunny morning. The prize of the morning definitely went to Ron Schulz who found a free-floating, twinned, double-terminated water-clear quartz  crystal (a "Mont").
Another feature of interest at the quartz site is a well preserved, spare-tire sized Ammonite fossil, precariously perched on a small ledge just above the crystal ledge.

The Montague Ammonite was first discovered by Andy Givens in early 2011. Unfortunately, it is in seroius danger of being ruined due to rock falls and crumbling. Photographing this incredible fossil is now really the only way to preserve it for the future.
After a loud, boisterous and FUN couple of hours crystal collecting, we broke for lunch and then headed for the afternoon's feature, stop #2, Trilobite Ridge.

A group photo of many of our fossil hunters on Trilobite Ridge.
After a few hours of some intense fossil hunting, several very nice fossils were found, and everyone came out with smiles on their faces and specimens in their buckets! The big winners in the Trilobite hunt were Bryan Davis, who found some very nice multi-trilo specimens, and Jess Jacobsen who found a monster Trilo tail 100% intact, as well as numerous specimens of fossilized coral from the coral reef exposure.

A group of tuckered-out collectors can still muster up smiles after a long day of collecting up in the North West Corner!!
This was, by far, one of the most amazing weekends of geology we have seen in a very long time. Maybe with NOJMS and FOMS blazing new trails in the future, we can all experience more new and exciting adventures exploring the state we all call home, NEW Jersey!!!

Club members who attended the Montague portion of the weekend trip:
Jeff Wilson, Dave Shapiro, Laura Brecka, Petra Chirco, Peter Karas, Jason Baskin, Bryan Davis, Andy Abdul, Arlene Castleman, Barry Clark, Kay Clark, Rick Barr, Mike Machette, Dave Matthews, Jim Currie, Sarna Strom, Jess Jacobsen, Herschel Friedman, Eric Stanchich, and club president and V.I.P., Ron Schulz.

Thanks to all who attended both trips for a fine weekend of fun and fellowship!


Oct. 15, 2011 - Our annual picnic at Sterling Hill Mine -

Around 35 club members enjoyed a day of food and minerals at the 2011 Club Picnic at Sterling Hill Mine. The weather was mostly cloudy and windy with that autumn chill in the air, but everyone enjoyed the BBQ and the morning museum & mine tour. Ron Schulz was again our chef and Ron from Sterling Hill was again our tour guide! Members also had a ball collecting during the afternoon in the worldwide minerals pile in the Mine Run, as many fresh specimens, including dozens of unopened geodes were available for us to pick through! Much time was spent by members cracking open every last geode in the pile! Many beautiful flourescent geodes were opened as well as several "star" geodes which produced a superb flourescent star pattern when held under SW UV light! Also found in the Mine Run Dump in the afternoon, were numerous specimens of bright white Sterling Hill hemimorphite, graciously deposited there by the staff for us to "find"! Members were also seen collecting in all 3 pits in the mine. A fun day was had by all who attended. Oh yeah, and NO BEES!!!

Ron, our tour guide, prepares to take the group into the mine adit. A boy scout troop was invited to join us for this fun event!

Overall a super day at Sterling Hill!!


June 25, 2011 - NOJMS trip to Big Brook - 7 club members attended this trip. It was an awesome day and the weather could not have been any better! Even after heavy rains the week before, the brook was not running high, and collecting was easy! Sharks teeth were plentiful this fine day! Derek collected over 160, Mike M. over 90, and Jeff got 61.(We were the nerds who actually counted ours) The other members who attended also went home with their baggies full!  It was a fun day for all and well worth the trip!

NOJMS members enjoying a great day in Big Brook. L to R are : Jeff Wilson, Alex Paulino, Bob Allen, Mike Farrell, Mike Machette, Dave Matthews and Derek Yoost.

Jeff and Mike hamming it up with a little tooth humor...

Club member Dave Matthews hard at work scouring for shark teeth

Alex, Mike and Derek working the stream bed

Bob Allen examining his screen for teeth

The find of the day! Mike Machette shows off his Mosasaur tooth, a very rare find in Big Brook!

Jeff's finds! That's a whole plate o'teeth!!


May 20, 2011 - Jeff Wilson, Ron Schulz, Bryan Davis and Mike Machette were invited to attend a private UV night dig at the Rhein property in Amity, NY (just north of the NJ State line).  I felt it was noteworthy to post a report in this section because we were all NOJMS club members and this was an amazing and unusual trip! The property owner, Glenn Rhein was gracious enough to allow us to collect for several hours at night by UV lamp on his property. We were very successful in collecting many fine representative flourescent specimens from this historic and unusual location. The property lies directly over a contact zone between the country granite and Franklin marble, and the mineral assemblages being found every day here are extraordinary to say the least. His home is like a mineral museum and as impressive as the daylight minerals are, the UV flourescent specimens are equally as impressive.  We had a great collecting trip. Thank You, Glenn for being such a gracious host! A show-and-tell of these specimens was set up at the June meeting and samples were given to all members attending!


May 14, 2011 - 8 club members attended the field trip to Carbondale, Pa. to collect fossil ferns, calamites, and swamp grasses at the old Carbondale strip mine. Plenty of fossils were found by all! Fern fossils were a bit more scarce this trip, but the enormous calamites and grass frons that were found well made up for it. Also found were some interesting stone and iron nodule inclusions in the shale that were quite unusual for this location. Bob Allen found one exceptional iron nodule that was the size of an egg, and Andy A. found an even larger one! Then all of us went to the Lackawanna Coal Mine in Scranton for an underground tour of an actual coal mine. The tour was enjoyable and very informative. We only had one quick shower around noon time, otherwise the weather was just overcast and cool. Attending the trip were: Jeff Wilson, Ron Schulz, Mike Machette, Bob Allen, Andy Abdul, Arlene Castleman, Bob Endres, and Esther Endres.

Club members arrive and prepare to collect in the mine tailings. Note: The huge pile behind the trees is where we collected! The mine spoils pile is approx 50 feet tall, 1200 feet wide and 150 feet deep!

Andy, Arlene and Bob bringing down full buckets of specimens!

Bob Allen, Andy Abdul, Arlene Castleman, Esther Endres, Bob Endres, Mike Machette, Ron Schulz, and trip leader Jeff Wilson at the Carbondale collecting site.

NoJMS members preparing to enter the coal mine!!

Mike M., Ron S., Arlene C.,and Bob A. in the "ManCar" being lowered in reverse into the adit of the coal mine.

Deep in the coal mine. Not much headroom!


11/13/2010 - Several club members had visited the Saint Clair, Pa. fern fossil site during the fall of 2010. One such trip took Bob Allen and Bob Santee to this wonderful collecting location. Bob and Bob collected plenty of these fine fern fossils on this day. They even met the property owner who was gracious enough to assist the guys in hauling their finds to the parking area.
The ferns are from the Llewellyn formation and were deposited during the Pennsylvanian period. As the sediments built up on the floor of the swamp where they settled, the plant fibers were slowly replaced by pyrite, which was then replaced by pyrophyllite over time, giving them their trademark white appearance.


10/9/2010 - Club Annual Picnic and Field Trip to Sterling Hill Mining Museum, Ogdensburg, NJ. Beautiful weather greeted us this day and the mine tour was great as always. The museum displays were outstanding, and the new displays they added were even better. Collecting was very good as the club was invited to collect in all of the pits as well as the mine run dump. Some chose just to relax and enjoy the day under the pavillion and others spent much of the day gathering some great flourescent specimens. We had very good food, prepared by our chef Ron with some much appreciated help from a couple fellow members. About 30 members attended this fun day. Sorry, no photos from this event...


5/10/2009. Several members went to Central New Jersey to collect shark teeth and fossils at Big Brook. Many great fossils and sharks teeth were uncovered. A fun time was had by all who attended.

Quartz Crystal, Montague, NJ