The intricacies of what one might term the Richardson family of thundereggs (which sprawl all over Oregon it seems!) are enough to make a collector like me with only a vague understanding of it all curl up in a corner. For a long time, the Richardson section of the gallery has been a mark of shame for me – a largely unclassified heap with some of the most famous thunderegg beds in the world largely just thrown into a pile together. In my defence though, well, just look at these things? How exactly is one supposed to tell some of them apart? Red bed? Blue bed? Especially when you see how much they vary within the beds themselves as well.
To celebrate me finally getting up off my arse and beginning the process of fixing all this, and just to muddy the confusion even more, here are a few new locations that I have managed to acquire and publish. With my hat in my hand, I might as well confess that there is no way I would be able to distinguish some of these from others in this area, and if I didn’t already have my hat in my hand, I would take it off to those who can.
First up is South Blue Bed. As one might expect, this is a bed located a bit to the south of the famous Richardson Blue Bed, which I sometimes suspect makes up around 95% of the thundereggs on the market! To me, this looks like a new point of access to the same bed, but the dealers seem quite happy to run with the new tag so I will as well. Here are two new specimens from South Blue, which recently arrived. Both very cute stones and ones I am very happy to have representing this new location on the gallery.
Another new discovery has also appeared on the scene very recently. Sniffed out by Jason Hinkle about 15km from Richardson, there are very few Wild Iris bed thundereggs on the market so far. In spite of the distance from Richardson, the similarity is still pronounced, though I am wondering whether the matrix is displaying a distinct richness and dark colour? More specimens will be needed to say for sure.
Although there will almost certainly be more spectacular specimens of this location, this was one of the first small batch ever to be made available anywhere, which gives it a certain special feeling (almost like a first edition book!). Aside from that though, the complexity of that interior and my uncertainty how on earth it formed the way it did, as well as the simple depth of that clear agate, make this a very striking stone for me. The sort you can turn over in your hands, getting ever-changing views deep inside.
The last new location for the moment is the obscure Fuston thunderegg. Not often seen and with a distinctively worn and faded looking matrix, this is a location I know very little about. Here though is a specimen showing some nice moss filaments.
Just to finish off, a few specimens from more familiar locations that are worth a look. Here is a Pony Butte specimen doing what that location does best – striking moss structures.
And lastly, a Pony Creek stone that is notable for being one of the few thunderegs to be substantially filled with something other than quartz/agate. Trouble is I am not sure what this stuff is! My ignorance of geology rather shows itself when presented with specimens like this one. Still – a very unusual and striking thunderegg!
P.S. Please bear with me while I sort out the Richardson galleries. At the moment there’s still a big ‘roadworks’ sign over them all and for the next few days/weeks there may be stones in the wrong places and links that do not work. However, at least I have made a start and it WILL be sorted soon I promise.