2004 Dust Devil DigThe country leading out past Plush, OR looked like something from a Zane Grey novel. It was early spring and everything was a lovely shade of green. The road out to the mine and public area from Plush is a good road, however, you have to be careful and catch the turn onto 311. We drove right by and we only realised we'd missed our turn about 10 miles later. Arriving at the public dig site we discovered our trailer had blown a fuse and the battery had gone dead. We didn't have any extra fuses on hand so My aunt and mother drove over to the Dust Devil Mine to see if they had a 30 amp fuse. 5 minutes later they were back with three fuses, we hooked up the jumper cables and charged up the batteries. A large A-class was our only company out at that area.
In the morning we looked out of the window of our trailer and watched as large clouds loomed in the distance. It was going to be a great day for mining unless a thunderstorm came up. The clouds just seemed to float off and never caused us any problems in fact the day turned out to be very sunny. Critical if you are hunting sunstones.
We headed over to the Dust Devil and were greated by Terry. He showed us the pit and told us the mining rule of not digging anywhere there are tools left in the hole. "Those areas are being worked by others who want to finish" he told us. I didn't really know what I was doing but I scouted around for an area with workable matrix and set about digging it up.
I'd been digging furiously and breaking rocks up with my pick when I spotted several large stones. One of these stones turned out to be a dichroic sunstone. I showed it to my mother and to Terry when he came around to check on us. I ended up showing it to several people, people were coming up to me and asking to see it. The mine folks told me to put it deep down in my pocket and not to loose it. I thought 'boy this is easy' and I continued to work the area. At the end of the day I had two facet worthy dichroics and plenty of great schiller sunstones. The conversation at the end of the day was lively and we talked to Don Bufford, one of the partners in the mine, for quite awhile. At the end we paid a very fair price for our really good stones and nothing for everything else. Some of the stones I found that day are pictured at the top of the page. WoW!