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Utah Rock Shops

I’m looking for any Orchidians living in Utah or anyone having done
business with a rock shop(s) there. I will be going to New Mexico,
Arizona, Colorado and Utah in the early fall on a buying trip. In
particular, while in Utah, I’m looking for very good quality red cell
dino bone,Variscite,red horn coral and variquoise. I have done
busines with Brysons there by mail and plan on visiting them while
there, but would like to know of any others that are quality shops
worth visiting.Please contact me off-line if you like.Any and all
suggestions appreciated.John Barton in Texas, where it’s hot and dry.

There’s one just north of Moab on the right side of the road, it
might even be called the Moab Rock Shop but I wouldn’t swear to it.

There’s also one in Delta called the Bug House (due to it’s
proximity to the trilobite location). We were there a couple years
ago; run by a real nice guy, he was pretty well organized and had a
lot of dino bone.


Hi John Barton–one of the nicest rock shops with quality gem
dino-bone can be found in Vernal, Utah–directly across the street
from the Dinosaur Museum right on the main street of Vernal. There
is the larger Dinosaur Park exhibit out East of town-- which is a
must see! The 2nd generation owner has also some of the best Mokume
Gane that I have seen as well and if he likes you, he’ll let you
watch him do his billets. I had the opportunity but did not have
the time. His name excapes me now, but he has been featured in
Lapidary Journal. A great place and beautiful work. The drive
through this part of Utah is wonderful and if you like to camp, the
Park on the Green River is beautiful. We have also visited the
Bryson’s Rock Shop in Ogdon. If you are lucky, you can catch the
annual Rock Show in Moab, Utah in mid-October and should find some
good Utah materials there.

Vi Jones, in the beautiful (at last summer) Pacific Northwest.

Hi John, Please visit us near Denver. We have African Pietersite
rough and should have a box from African shortly with new slabs of
bright reds and yellows. I also have a dozen or so slabs or charoite
and large chunks of Russian carving quartz we’d like to liquidate.

I may or may not be in town, but there is always someone at the

Ed Cleveland


One of the coolest rock shops I have ever been in besides the one I
worked in as a kid is a place called Ernest Shirley Rocks located in
Hanksville, Utah. It is on the way to Torey, Utah. Between
Hanksville and Torey an on, is Capital Reef national park, it is one
of the most scenic rides in the United States. There are petroglyphs
on the walls of the canyon that you should not miss and the canyon is
littered with apricot trees planted by the Mormon settlers.
Hanksville is a, if you sneeze you can miss it town with a gas
station general store and a couple of eateries down the road.
Ernest’s rock shop is like something from a movie it is a small old
store with wooden floors and shelves of all types of mineral
specimens and such. Dino bone is every where, Arrow heads and
artifacts. Pottery shards by the boxes in the back are huge piles of
all types of rough. There is another building in the rear of the
place that houses an assortment of tools and pallets with dino femurs
that are like five feet long. In the corner of one of the rooms I
found a bone about 4 ft long that had been broken off and in the
center of the bone was a pocket of amethyst crystal surrounded by
banded agate. There are skulls and antlers hanging on his fences in
the back and the proverbial junk yard dog. He had a bunch of red cell
dino bone. That is what we went there to find. If you can get to
Denver in Sept. there is a huge show around the 22 that has many Utah
dealers with great material. We have bought Dino beads and great red
cell there. If you want to make the trek to Hanksville it is an
adventure. We have not been there in about 2 years. Always stop when
we go to Lake Powell. Ernest was getting on in years maybe 80 I

You might give a call his # is 801-542-3454. Hanksville is
basically off highway 50 out of Green River. After about fifty miles
the road tees and to the left is Lake Powell and Moab to the right is
Hanksville and Farther down the road Torey. Bring a Camera. Please
e-mail me if you go and let me know how it was. The directions are
from memory so I would use map quest.

Regards J Morley Goldsmith/Laserwelding