Hi, I’m Herkimer. I live in the desert in eastern Oregon and I’ve been blackmailed into telling you about these pictures. These 2 guys said they were here last year, but I don’t remember them. The info is on the Graveyard Point mining operation report for 2000.
First of all, let me say that I had nothing to do with these pictures. I was just sitting here on my rock one day when these two guys showed up with gigantic trailers and noisy machines. At first I was scared, but I have heard that these human animals often brings bugs with them. That’s what I eat! So I decided to wait and see. Well, let me tell you, I’m getting a little fat!
One of the first things they did was put out a pan of water to splash on their faces. Well, let me tell you, by morning every bug within 50 yards knew about it. I’ve never had it so good. I had my choice of bugs and they came right to me. This picture is of yours truly. I’m on the carpet between the two trailers. Breakfast is right behind me if I want it. I’m getting a little tired of stink bugs but those two guys told me that if I didn’t do this narration, they might not come back next year.
This is a picture of Bev standing next to one of those big machines. They used it to dig a gigantic hole in the ground looking for agates. The two guys joked about using the picture as an advertisement for a caterpillar. I don’t know what they meant. These guys - Gene and Jake- are crazy anyway. They dig in the ground from 9:00 in the morning to 9:00 at night every day for rocks that you can find on top of the ground anyway, and they put them in big piles next to their trailers.
A view looking south from the trailer. As you can see there are no trees around here, which suits me just fine.
This picture shows the start of the digging. Since this area was dug back in the 70s, Gene and Jake had to remove all the dirt, rock, and snakes from the old hole.
There were a lot of visitors to the mine this year. Both the Boise Rock Club and the Hood River Rock Club came to visit with lots of cars and trucks. I hid under a rock. They wandered all over and had a good time.
Gene and Jake found some unusual things like agate balls, pseudomorphs, and stalactites. When they found the original vug, they found these two pieces of very delicate angelwing. They made a bet to see if they could get them back to camp without breaking them and they did it! Then they put them in a cardboard box on the back of the trailer and came and sat down by me and my rock near the campfire. Just then a big gust of wind came along and blew the box off the truck and broke both specimens. Then I ate another tasty gnat the wondered what the big deal was??? Anyway, they said these 2 pictures are the only record of these specimens.
One day they hit a gigantic vug. They called it a "cave". They stuck the shovel handle down in the hole but it didn't touch the bottom. I didn't think there were any bugs down there so I wasn't interested in exploring the hole, but they were. Can you see anything down there that looks appetizing? Maybe they got so hungry that they left one of their tools there and went elsewhere to find food.
They decided to open up the hole more and that’s when this crazy guy stuck his head in the hole! He saw some good agate on the side and back walls, but further down it was bad. I don’t know why they were so disappointed. You can’t eat agates.
One time Gene and Jake uncovered a pocket of blue opal and they put it (of all places!) on my rock! They said they were checking to see if it would turn white. It didn’t lose all of its color but it did get lighter.
I usually sit on my rock every evening at the same time that Gene and Jake would sit around the camp fire and talk. On their best day, they said they dug almost a ton of agate. This picture shows the caterpillar bucket full of agate from one day of digging. The ground really shook when they dumped it out!
One day the big machine left and Gene, Jake, and Bev packed up all their stuff and they left, too. Now I have to go hunting for food by myself. I’m really going to miss those fat wasps that came to drink out of that pan of water! Well, let me tell you, I’m counting on them to come back again next year, since I have fulfilled my part of the bargain in telling you about these pictures. This last picture is what I see at the end of each day. I sure hope they left some tasty bugs behind.