With great sadness, I am leaving the land of Dallasite and Flowerstone (Vancouver Island).
Real work, the non-rockhounding kind, has called me to the northern end of the continent in Yellowknife, Northwest Territories.
I am going to keep this blog up as a rockhounding resource for Vancouver Island, BC, and everything going well, Northwest Territories eventually. I’ve got to wait for the ground to defrost to hound up there, though.
BC Rockhound gets a lot of hits from rockhounders on the internet. I recommend everyone on Vancouver Island to get into rockhounding.
It is SO EASY to get into this fantastic hobby and gives you a reason to explore the beautiful scenery.
Here are a few quick tips if you’re looking to rockhound on Vancouver Island:
– Dallasite and Flowerstone are found on east-coast beaches up and down the entire island.
– Look for rocky beaches with access points by driving. These can be found in most any small town along the east coast, from Nanaimo up to Courtenay.
– Flowerstone comes in many colours but always has a distinctive “flower” pattern made from its crystals on a darker background. Fantastic garden rocks!
– Dallasite is green (epidote/epidosite), white (quartz), and black (altered basalt). Pumpelleyite forms some of the beautiful added colours in Dallasite, and if you’re lucky you will find pieces with hints of blue in them. Remember that quartz and basalt is no good; you’re looking for the rocks with Dallasite’s classic zig-zagging design pattern of green on a black background.
– Use this website to follow the tides ( http://www.tide-forecast.com ). Beaches on Vancouver Island dry out a long way at low tide and expose tons of rock, but there’s nothing to hound for at high tide. Note that you don’t always have to go at the ultimate lowest-tide times, because rocks further out get progressively more covered in barnacles and impossible to identify.
– Dallasite and Flowerstone can also be found in inland areas. This is where you can stumble on some really cool personal finds. Look areas with water like creeks, rivers and lakes.
– Invest in a rock tumbler or saw if you want to take your hobby to the next level.
That’s all I’ve got for now. Thank you very much for reading this blog. I will be updating it with rockhounding stuff as usual, but I must point out my sadness to leave this particularly beautiful area.
Thanks for the sources in Rockhounding. I recently moved to Campbell River and found a huge piece of Flowerstone(although didn’t know that’s what it was until recently). I know there is more to find but my question is, can you sell these stones anywhere(as an amateur/hobbyist) if so, can it be lucrative?
Hi Nick, sorry I missed your comment!
It’s possible you could make a few bucks here and there, but I don’t think it’s a huge business opportunity.
Rock shops may buy high quality rough Flowerstone. Lapidarists online may buy some.
I’ve sold some rocks but in the end I don’t think it was a break-even venture. Counting hounding time and gas I doubt I hit minimum wage. But it’s fun to spread it around. And maybe it’s all in the marketing — I believe Asian tourists can be quite enamoured with flowerstone, as a similar stone is found in Japan too.