Bower's Farm
Limonite after Pyrite Dig
Stanly County, North Carolina
July 29, 2006
Report by Bill Hayward

I finally got a chance to go to Bowers' Farm. I had read the field trip report on McRocks and wanted to try it.

I started out early to make the 1-hour trip to Norwood from Huntersville, NC. Fortunately, I recon'd the route the day prior and found out the Rt. 138 and Cottonville Rd intersection is closed. You have to find your way around using back roads if you are coming in from Aquadale on Rt. 138. I made it to the Bowers' house to pay my $5 and headed to the dig area. Having not been to the dig area before, I was not exactly sure I was in the right place. After checking things out, I felt I was in the right place.

By this time, it was about 8am. I loaded up my bucket and backpack and headed to the dig area. I found the place where people had dug in the past. Just off the open area was a big hole someone dug but did not fill back in. If you go, please make sure you fill in your holes. I want to be able to go back again someday. I was not sure where to dig exactly so I looked at the tailing pile next to the big hole. They left me enough clues in the form of limonite cubes to know I should dig next to the big hole. They also left me a nice present. WOW! I hadn't even started digging yet and I find this. That really got me excited so I started digging. I got down to the hard stuff and started breaking it away. Make sure you bring a screwdriver (use it like a chisel) and a rock hammer to break apart the material the limonite cubes are in. As I did, I could see the small limonite cubes.

I kept digging, hoping to find something bigger. It took a while but I found something bigger. I didn't know what I had until it came out but I took my time because I wanted it to come out in one piece. I didn't have anything to worry about. It was all joined together. I kept digging in the same area the big cluster came out and wouldn't you know it, I found more clusters. Not nearly as big but still nice. By the time I pulled the last of many clusters out, it was 11:30am so I decided to pack it up. I filled up my hole and headed back to the car.

The following are a few pictures of the rest of the pieces I found.


What a day! I didn't come with any expectations for what I was going to find and it turned out to be a great dig. I am not sure I want to go back because I am afraid I won't find nearly what I found this time. I'm sure I will but I will have to temper my expectations.