Quartz - unusual citrine smokey crystals - Orange River - South Africa. All pictures taken with daylight lamps and back lighting. Size : 15 x 7.1 x 6.3 cm Weight : 742 gr. Pale to dark amethyst quartz was mined sporadically by George Swanson of Springbok.And others, on the farms Gaidip 146, Houms Rivier 133 and Girtis 109, south of Warmbad. Few specimens survived the reduction to gem rough and it was only during the late 1990's that the collector community became aware of the wealth of beautiful specimens the area has to offer. This was fuelled by the persistence of Heini Soltau of Lüderitz, realizing the potential of the first specimens from the area, and actively supporting the efforts of the local prospector diggers. Occasional specimens did reach collections prior to this but vague locality indications and the remoteness of the area precluded wider interest.
On Gaidip the crystal producing area is situated in rugged terrain on the eastern border of the farm, in gullies running towards the Orange River. The host rocks are pink gneisses and granite of the Namaqualand Metamorphic Suite, with numerous pegmatite bands running east-west.
On Girtis and Hourns Rivier intercalated schists are common. The pegmatites are simple pegmatites consisting of potassium feldspar, quartz, minor muscovite and magnetite with occasionaly epidote. On the detailed map of the area no pegmatites are indicated and these were probably regarded as remobilized gneisses. Vuggy hydrothermal quartz-carbonate veins which show extensive epithermal and supergene overprint are widespread and host the rather unusual and beautiful red hematite coated, multiphantom, amethyst crystals, often as scepters and caps.
Similar and more isolated occurrences have been located on the Hartebeestmund 168, Girtis 109, Hourns Rivier 133 and Ramansdrift 135 farms. A particular pocket on Girtis, known as the "Kalkgat", contained superb large crystals of intense reddish-brown color, often on pink albite or as floater crystal groups.
The area with these quartzes is much larger and extends on both sides of the Orange River. Unless one is familiar with particular pockets and areas, specimens should be labelled "Orange River Area, south of Warmbad". Hydrothermal quartz bands have undergone extensive epithermal and supergene alteration with multiphase crystallization.
The primary unaltered quartz is milky white with scepter caps and coatings of varying colors. The most commonly included mineral is Hematite.
Some quartzes have white caps oc included fibrous clinochrysotile. Many of the specimens are very aesthetic with red/orange/ purple and amethyst caps and phantoms.Anatase, as small black dipyramidal microcrystals, was noted on and in specimens from Hartebeestmund. The item "Quartz Crystal Cluster Citrine Smokey Orange River Quarz 15 x 7.1 x 6.2 cm" is in sale since Monday, October 05, 2015. This item is in the category "Collectibles\Rocks, Fossils & Minerals\Crystals & Mineral Specimens\Crystals". The seller is "classicrocksandgems2" and is located in Morsbach. This item can be shipped worldwide.