July 3, 2009
In early July we drove to my sisterís house in eastern Pennsylvania for her annual Fourth of July picnic and a family reunion the next day. On the third, I made a trip to the Sterling Hill Mine, about an hour away in New Jersey.
There were a lot of dark clouds when I left, and a forecast of rain, but I decided to take a chance anyway. Traffic was surprisingly light for a holiday weekend.
The Sterling Hill Mine is a part of the famous Franklin ore body. While the mines at Franklin, about 15 miles north, are closed, the Sterling Hill Mine is still open, being operated for specimens and tours. Underground collecting is permitted once a month, on the last Sunday. Unfortunately, this is always a week before Iím in the area. On other days, there is a dump where collecting is permitted for a small fee. They charge $ 5.00 admission, plus $ 1.50 per pound of material collected.
The mine dump
There has been a lot of restoration work on the buildings and equipment. One of the buildings houses the museum, gift shop and office.
One of the entrances to the mine
A light rain started while I was collecting on the dump, but not enough to cause me to quit. On the way back to Pennsylvania, though, the skies opened up! I drove through torrential rain through much of New Jersey, but it stopped before I reached the bridge over the Delaware River. I got back to my sisterís house in time to help erct the tents, etc. for the picnic.