Rock & Gem Magazine
by Bob Jones
January 2004
(page 54)

A Rockhounding Guide to North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains
By Michael Streeter
Paperback, $16.95

The title of this text says it all. For anyone planning on rock hunting in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, A Rockhounding Guide to North Carolina's Blue Ridge Mountains (Milestone Press, 2003) is an essential part of the collecting kit. It is a great aid when visiting this ideal setting for family digging and vacationing. The scenic reaches and great variety of mineral opportunities here are well known, and this handy text is a perfect companion. For its size, it is quite complete.

Designed to provide the exact location of 30 collecting areas in 17 North Carolina counties, this book is remarkable in its exactness of directions and locations for digging, along with detailed information on what to look for when you get there.

Each site information page gives a brief but very useful description of the minerals found at that site. The variety of minerals species is almost astounding. It offers chances to find everything from ruby and sapphire to calcite to lapidary materials, and a host of minerals in between.

This text is right up to date in that it provides a map of each collecting area taken directly from U.S. Geological Survey documents. With each map are the exact GPS locations to the deposit so you can go right to the spot. Information on GPS instruments and how to obtain larger area maps is given.

Michael Streeter, the author, is licensed with the North Carolina Department of Environmental and Natural Resources and is a trained geologist. His expertise shows through as he describes the rocks and minerals, as well as enough geology to help the rockhound be successful.

With a glossary, a brief history of the area, including the prehistoric trading and mining activities of the early inhabitants, 100 black-and-white maps and photos, and a four-page color insert, this 132-page text offers far more than just collecting information. Easy to read, with directions just as easy to follow, this handy guide belongs in every collector's library and backpack.

For more information, write to Milestone Press, P.O. Box 158, Almond, NC 28702, call (828) 488-6601, or visit

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