August 1, 2003
This was one of the trips run by the Ishpeming (MI) club in conjunction with their annual show. The other trip, which I did not attend, was to the Lindberg Quarry for Kona Dolomite.
The Republic Mine is a large open pit that is no longer operated, and is now flooded. The mine and the dumps are fenced and only available for collecting by special permission. Next to the entrance gate, however, there is an observation platform and piles of specular Hematite and taconite balls that may be collected.
The mine is reached from US 41 by going south on SR 95 to the first road east to Republic. Follow that road through the town of Republic, and it leads to the gate. The location in MAS/MILS appears to be quite a bit off. The GPS location of the Magnetite dump is lat. 46 deg 23.263, lon. 87 deg 58.823
We collected first on a dump which contained primarily specular Hematite, but we also found Calcite, Quartz, Ilmenite and Bornite. We then proceeded to another dump which was predominantly Magnetite. The concentrator at this mine was unable to process Magnetite, so it was sent to this dump. Despite a light rain, everyone was able to collect all the Hematite & Magnetite they wanted.
I took no pictures on this trip, because as soon as I turned my digital camera on, it killed the batteries. Al Smith of the Ishpeming Club has promised to send me pictures, and Ill add them as soon as they arrive.
The next day, August 2, was the Ishpeming show. This is a small, one-day show, but very well run. They had dealers both inside the building & outside in the parking lot, continuous silent auctions, and a speaker and live auction in the evening. Again, pictures will have to wait.