One of the nice things about becoming a rock hound is all the neat back roads you get to travel. On one such road, we were on our way to Copper Flats when we found this old rock house!
Probably built by some early prospector who lived there before the big copper mine moved in. I found some neat lavender glass around this place and we intend to go back with a metal detector and see if we can find anything interesting here.
The landscapes we find on our explorations are beautiful, here is a Jumping Cholla cactus in bloom, and a close up below.
One of the places Chuck and I like to look are in dry creek beds, or washes. Lots of rocks to sort through in these places.
Then Betty, the lady at the local rock shop, told us about this old copper mine out on a place now known as Copper Flats. The mine closed a few years ago, but left behind a lot of interesting equipment!
While in one of the creek beds, I looked up and saw another rock house! Smart builders back then.... more rocks out here than anything else! Cheap building materials. Easy shelter!
As we drove on..... trying to find this Copper Lake she told us about, we passed cows and calves and a few long horned varieties. As we went up and over a hill..... suddenly this amazing turquoise lake appeared! As you can see from the photos below, the water color was intense.
But as hot as it was, no way would I consider jumping in! All around the edges of this lake are weird crystal formations, like a crust circling just above the water.
We parked on a dry flat area and started exploring.
This lake is the most unbelievable color I have ever seen. But it is the result of being the run off for the copper tailings piled all around it. No telling what chemicals they used to extract the copper from the rock!
But the color is almost hypnotic! When you look this way, you see just mountains in the distance!
But when you look this way, you see all the tailings from the copper mine! The rains washes over these into this lake.
This is Chet Carrera, caretaker of the old copper mine property. He came over to check on us, wondering if we were lost way out here in the middle of nowhere. He is the nicest man! Told us we were welcome to look for rocks, in fact a big Albuquerque rock club comes down quite often to search! Chet says every once and awhile he has to chase out swimmers from the lake. DUH! Makes me wonder where their brains are! Sure the water is pretty and looks mighty tempting on a very hot day........... but it ain't worth dying to cool off !!!
Chet and Chuck talked a long time while I took pictures and picked up rocks! Yep, Chuck and I have become real rock hounds! We went back out to Copper Flats yesterday and found lots of pyrite, copper, some silver, one rock might even have a gold flake according to Betty our local rock lady! I hope you enjoyed this visit to Copper Flats and this beautiful turquoise lake as much as we did. Geri