If you are fascinated by the different shapes and textures of rocks, then you have a knack for geology. Learning about rocks and how they form will surely fascinate you. In fact, it is a common hobby that many share. You can share beautiful rocks with your friends and give your rock collection a boost.
Straight from the desks of expert rock collectors, here is a list of tips that will help you begin your collection today. Before jumping to the list, learn what rocks are and things you should know to give your collection the right direction.
Rocks are consolidated dust and minerals that get a particular shape. They are composed of grains of minerals and form due to particular reasons. Geologists study rocks for various reasons and have found three significant categories.
1. Igneous Rocks
The solidification of molten lava coming out of the craters of volcanoes forms the igneous rocks. They are the youngest among these categories. Example: granite, basalt, obsidian, etc.
2. Sedimentary Rocks
As the name suggests, these rocks form when sand and minerals get accumulated on a surface for millions of years. These sediments solidify over the years and form sedimentary rocks. You will find clear divisions of layers inside these rocks. Example: sandstone, slate, limestone, etc.
3. Metamorphic Rocks
These rocks form due to high pressure and temperature on the rock beds. Extreme temperature and pressure trigger chemical reactions and form metamorphic rocks. These incidents actually happen to the pre-existing rocks. Example: schist, phyllite, marble, gneiss, etc.
Rock enthusiasts like you enjoy finding rocks of different kinds and textures. Finding a special rock certainly brings joy and it shines in your eyes. Doesn’t it? The colours, shapes and textures are so fascinating that you can start a collection. You will also love to display your collection to your friends who are interested in rocks.
Here is a list of tips you need to follow to start your rock collecting hobby.
1. Rock Selection
The biggest question that every rock collector faces is to pick which kind of rocks and what to discard. This world is full of rocks and you cannot keep them all. Dumping random rocks is not what we mean by a rock collection.
In this aspect, you need to find a theme. This theme will be the foundation of your rock collection. When you start, you will eventually learn to find and select unusual rocks. The unusualness of rocks means certain samples are not seen or witnessed commonly.
Hence, focus on the textures, shapes, patterns, colour, and other features of rock to add to your collection.
2. Identification of Rocks
Now that you have an idea of what kind of rocks broadly exist in nature, you can start learning about them deeply. Find out the significant features of these categories and start using them to identify rocks on your own.
Study about rocks and follow what you have gained as knowledge. This knowledge will become the base of your rock collection. You will easily find out the type of rocks you gathered and study them.
3. Where Can You Find Rocks?
This is one challenge that every rock collector likes to face. It will add thrill to your rock collection. The origin of these rocks will be clear when you study the categories in detail. Now, remember the sources or regions where such rocks can be found.
You can visit those places on your own if they are closer to your home. You can also go for a vacation and focus on your collection while having fun with your friends and family. This is what the experts teach as the basics of rock collecting regarding locations to find rocks of special kinds.
Unusual rocks are revealed when deeper excavation of land takes place. Keep an eye on the places where the government is digging for making roads or any construction. You can also find special rocks in quarries, natural cliffs, ditches, etc.
If you find something on someone’s property, make sure you ask his/her permission before taking the special rocks. It is mandatory.
4. Equipment You Might Need
When you have advanced from the beginner’s level to the amateur level of rock collection, proceed to afford a set of rock collection tools. These tools will help you gather the rocks you want to dig. These tools will ease the work and you will get injured in the process. Remember to learn how to use the tools under the supervision of an adult first. The use of chisels, hammers, and other instruments needs training.
5. Make a Beautiful Box
You will find fascinating ideas to make a box for your rock collection. Rocks cannot be kept together as they will get eroded and destroyed. Make a box and develop separate compartments for the special rocks you have collected. Label the specimens you have collected for identification.
6. Learn How to Clean and Care for Your Rocks
Another good reason why start a rock collection is to learn how to take care of your possessions. Find out how to clean the rocks you have collected and take care of them. For starters, use a toothbrush to clean a rock sample after collection.
This hobby of finding and sampling rocks is also called rockhounding. You will surely find more rockhounds like you. Get more tips from those who have been collecting rocks for years. To start with, follow these tips and find out how you can make a beautiful collection of rocks to surprise everyone. Keep your eyes open! Who knows where you will get a beautiful rock?