Hunting for rocks in the Great Lake region is the best on earth! Everything from rocks that glow to rocks that have hidden surprises, something to delight any collector. Rock hounds can be found wandering shorelines any time of year. Many elusive finds have been had when you would least expect it. As long as it is safe to do so, don’t let the weather deter you from a stroll on the beach with your head down looking for your favorite rock.
Below are six of the coolest rocks in Michigan that every rock hunter has to find in his or her lifetime.
Leland Blue is not really a stone it is a waste byproduct called slag glass. The slag comes from the iron ore smelting process used by the Leland Lake Superior Iron Company in the Leland in Michigan’s Northwest Lower Peninsula. The slag consisting of iron ore impurities was dumped into Lake Michigan. About 2% of the slag has the blue color and becomes Leland Blue.
Pudding Stone is a popular name given to a quartz conglomerate. A Pudding Stone looks like it has several round pebbles embedded in a lighter stone. There can be a variety of sizes and colors. Those found in Northern Michigan contain pieces of brown and red Jasper which is a type of quartz.
Lake Superior Agates
The Lake Superior agate are generally irregular shaped spheres. They are made up of quartz stained by iron and found on the shores of Lake Superior. The iron is deposited in layers and creates concentric circles that look like the rings in a tree trunk.
Yooperlites are Syenite (similar to granite) rocks that are rich in fluorescent Sodalite. They look like any other dark stone or typical gray rock until you shine a blacklight on them. Yooperlites will glow in the dark with vibrant orange or yellow light under Ultraviolet light. They were recently discovered in 2017 by Erik Rintamaki who gave them their name.
Thunder Egg Agates
Thunder Egg Agates are agate-filled nodules found in a range of sizes. From ¼ inch to as large as 5 feet in diameter but are general about the size of baseballs. They look like ordinary rocks on the outside, but slicing them in half and polishing them may reveal intricate patterns and colors.
Unakite is a true rock, an altered granite composed of pink orthoclase, feldspar, green epidote and colorless quartz. This gives a familiar moss on brick appearance. Found on the shares of Lake Superior it is sometimes found in Lake Michigan.
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