David K. Joyce Minerals

Recent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

There is a limestone quarry near Dundas, Onrtario, actually closer to a crossroads called "Clappison's Corners" where I have been collecting since I was a kid. This is a HUGE quarry where many millions of tonnes of limestone are blasted each year and processed into aggregate for roads, building projects, lime, cement, etc. This quarry has been a rich source of specimens of a number of minerals, specifically celestine, fluorite, sphalerite, calcite, gypsum, marcasite, galena, pyrrhotite and some others for over 50 years now! May be longer, I don't really know!

I used to go to this quarry often but haven't been for a few years. Every year the Central Canadian Federation of Mineral Societies(CCFMS) organizes two field trips into the quarry for members of associated clubs. This past September my brother, Brian, his wife Mary (my favourite sister-in law on that side of the family) and I made a pilgrimage to try to collect some of the well-crystallized minerals. Unfortunately, it was not a good day, weatherwise. We were suffering the after effects of hurricane Rita and there was rain, lightning and thunder for much of the early part of the day. We did find some decent crystals. Immediately upon arrival, Brian found a wonderful vug of fluorite and sphalerite in a boulder. You can see some of the great crystals that he retrieved in the photographs on this page. I have included some of the crystals that I collected that day, or in the past, as well. I hope that you enjoy them!

 

An older FluoriteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

An older Fluorite
This is an older specimen that, I believe, Mike Irwin collected many years ago, back in the 1980's. I think I traded it from Mike. The crystal is 23mm across. For information only. Not for sale.

An Older SphaleriteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

An Older Sphalerite
Back in the 1980's, reached into a vug and pulled out this nice sphalerite specimen. Notice that the complex 29mm sphalerite cluster is sitting on a fossil! You often see this. For information only. Not for sale.

Celestine, CalciteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Celestine, Calcite
Isn't this nice? Mike Irwin collected this piece back in the 1980's. For information only. Not for sale.

TheRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

The
This is the quarry, looking at it from the top bench about fifty feet below the original contour of the land. A LOT of rock and many mineral specimens have been removed from this quarry over the years.

This is actually only one of three giant quarries that have been developed on the site over the years. The plan is eventually to let it flood and make a lake out of it, complete with fish. Lake Fluorite? Celestine Lake?

Deep into his workRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Deep into his work
Brian Joyce diligently and carefully removes some very nice fluorite and sphalerite crystals from a vug in a boulder.

FluoriteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Fluorite
This is the nicest-largest fluorite specimen that Brian Joyce collected during this particular trip. He was fairly pleased!

Fluorite usually occurs in crystals like this -cubic crystals with gemmy corners and cloudy centres, either clear and colourless or with a browny tinge, like this one. Brian has faceted some nice fluorite stones from here.

Another FluoriteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Another Fluorite
Here is another nice, smaller fluorite that Brian Joyce collected.

SphaleriteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Sphalerite
Sphalerite occurs in a number of different habits at the Lafarge quarry. Brian found these lovely, complex, resinous red-orange clusters in his boulder-pocket.

Celestine in CalciteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

Celestine in Calcite
This is a little different. At one place in the quarry, blasting had revealed a vein of calcite. Embedded in the banded onyx-like calcite were large, blue celestine crystals. It would take a lot of acid to liberate these crystals! I brought one home as a "garden rock".

More Celestine in CalciteRecent Activities -Collecting at the Lafarge Quarry, Clappison's Corners, Ontario

More Celestine in Calcite
Another piece of the celestine in calcite. I hadn't seen this before!