Sapphire & Rubyvale Nov01

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Sapphire & Rubyvale

Matt was keen to do some fossicking out at Sapphire and Ruby Vale, near Emerald. We decided to tag along for the fun of it. We are enjoying their company and the kids are really getting on well.

There are some big coal mines out this way…

 

Clermont Mine

Clermont Mine

 

We set up in a free camp in Sapphire, next to the local pool. This was a stroke of luck, as day-time temperatures were nudging 40 degrees Celsius. Thankfully the nights were down around 15-20 degrees. We actually had our doona out!

Sapphire Miners Quarters

Sapphire Miners Quarters

More flowers for Nanny & Granny

More flowers for Nanny & Granny

Daytimes saw us out early (leaving at 6am!) to fossick. We staked our claim in a dry river bed and made sure our young Jedi warriors were out to protect us from the marauding Sand-People of Tatooine and other miners.

Our claim

Our claim

Alas – no Sapphires. But it was nice. We headed back into town for a late lunch at Pat’s Gems, where you could buy a huge Chicken Snitzel, a bag of dirt for $8 and a cold beer. We found a couple of small sapphires (too small for cutting).

1.  Shae operating the heavy machinery to dig out the sediments

1. Shae operating the heavy machinery to dig out the sediments

2.  Kai screens the rocks to get rid of the sand

2. Kai screens the rocks to get rid of the sand

3.  Kai washing the rocks

3. Kai washing the rocks

4.  Kai finding the sapphires

4. Kai finding the sapphires

5.  She testing the Hard Hats

5. Shae testing the Hard Hats

We heard the story about the 12 year old boy who found the largest sapphire while walking to school. And how a lady who had been winging about how hot it was on a tour found the then largest sapphire on the side of a path, by luck, after about 15 minutes of walking and whinging. In between whines she picked up the rock and asked “what’s this?”. Sometimes life is not fair… Matt and I slaved in the heat for nuffin!

By 3pm we were back at our campsite and swimming in the pool.

Pool at Sapphire

Pool at Sapphire

Our last night here was Halloween. Lindy and Nikky cooked up some sweets.

Lindy making sweets for Halloween

Lindy making sweets for Halloween

The kids decorated the Big Red with spooky drawings.

Kids preparing decorations for Halloween

Kids preparing decorations for Halloween

Halloween decorations

Halloween decorations

Lindy set up a treasure hunt…

Taya, Rueben and Kai working on the first clue of the Treasure hunt

Taya, Rueben and Kai working on the first clue of the Treasure hunt

They found the treasure.  Such sweet success!

They found the treasure. Such sweet success!

No sapphires. But smiles all round the campfire!

Shae splitting wood for Halloween fire

Shae splitting wood for Halloween fire

Halloween campfire

Halloween campfire

 

And the happiest person in Sapphire – Lindy, who finally got to see a…

Finally... A CAMEL!!!!

Finally… A CAMEL!!!!