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August 3, 2014 Weekly Weather and Rock Guess

August 3, 2014

Greetings from the Bluff Park Back Porch, way up yonder on Shades Mountain (1,109′) in Alabama:


This week’s rock guess
is a real and timely.  See attached pictures of purple rock.  What IS IT?  See description and comments below.

For the previous week, 0.02 inches of rain fell on BP2 The weekly high was 93 and the weekly low was 67.
  Humidity ranged from 95% down to 33%.  Maximum wind gust was 15 mph.

New Record Lows for Wednesday AM, July 20, 2014
http://www.alabamawx.com/?p=85185

July 2014 Rainfall
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/graphicast.php?site=bmx&gc=9

Dry July
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/graphicast.php?site=bmx&gc=6


Metro Birmingham Forecast
for the New Week


    93 is the forecast high, and 68 is the forecast low. 
    1.1″ of rain is forecast for the week. 

Space Weather
http://spaceweather.com/
__________________________________________________________________________________________________



Weather Guesses


Alabama All Weather Hazards Awareness:
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/images/bmx/aware/swaw_2011/web_version2.pdf

NWS, Huntsville, AL
:            http://www.srh.noaa.gov/hun/
NWS, Birmingham, AL:        http://www.srh.noaa.gov/bmx/
NWS, Mobile, AL:                   http://www.srh.noaa.gov/mob/



Metro Birmingham.  Compliments of ABC3340
http://www.alabamawx.com/?page_id=31752


Sun_PM_T-Storms_Icon Sunday August 3
Mixed sun and clouds. A few showers and storms possible.
Afternoon High 91
Wind: NE 5-10 mph   Sun percentage: 60%   Hours of rain: 1/2
Rain potential: 0.25″   Severe weather threat: None
Partly_Cloudy_Icon Monday August 4
Partly cloudy.  A few isolated showers or storms.
Morning Low 68   Afternoon High 90
Wind: N 6-12 mph   Sun percentage: 70%   Hours of rain: 1/4
Rain potential: 0.10″   Severe weather threat: None
Partly_Cloudy_Icon Tuesday August 5
Mostly sunny.  Isolated afternoon and evening storms.
Morning Low 70   Afternoon High 91
Wind: NE 6-12 mph   Sun percentage: 75%   Hours of rain: 1/4
Rain potential: 0.10″   Severe weather threat: None
Partly_Cloudy_Icon Wednesday August 6
More sun than clouds. A very small risk for a thunderstorm.
Morning Low 71   Afternoon High 92
Wind: NE 6-12 mph   Sun percentage: 70%   Hours of rain: 1/4
Rain potential: 0.10″   Severe weather threat: None
Partly_Cloudy_Icon Thursday August 7
Partly cloudy. Isolated afternoon storm possible.
Morning Low 70    Afternoon High 93
Wind: N 6-12 mph Sun percentage: 70% Hours of rain: 1/4
Rain potential: 0.15″ Severe weather threat: None
Sun_PM_T-Storms_Icon Friday August 8
Partly sunny.  Some showers and storms.
Morning Low 71   Afternoon High 92
Wind: SW 5-10 mph Sun percentage: 55% Hours of rain: 1/2
Rain potential: 0.20″ Severe weather threat: None
Sun_PM_T-Storms_Icon Saturday August 9
Partly cloudy; scattered showers and a few thunderstorms.
Morning Low 72   Afternoon High 89
Wind: NE 5-10 mph Sun percentage: 55% Hours of rain: 1/2
Rain potential: 0.20″ Severe weather threat: None


Weather Underground Map for Metro Birmingham (Just wander around the state to pick you closest weather station).
http://www.wunderground.com/wundermap/?lat=33.24038696&lon=-86.82407379&zoom=10&pin=

Monthly Forecast by AccuWeather

http://www.accuweather.com/en/us/birmingham-al/35203/july-weather/346630?monyr=7/1/2014

Alabama Climate Data
http://nsstc.uah.edu/alclimate/climate/daily_climate.php







Minerals and Rocks = “The Good Life from the Ground”
“If it ain’t grown, its got to be mined”



Mystery Rock from Cottondale, Alabama


Description from the Field:
   
Interesting purple minerals? 
    Upon washing, I realized they were not purple at all, but a very translucent clear mineral with extensive purple inclusions that run throughout the mineral.

   
When viewed from a 2-3 foot distance, the mineral appears to be light purple to dark purple and the inclusions only become apparent upon close inspection for most specimens.  When dry, the inclusions of the unpolished stones give off a slight metallic or reflective luster.
   
None of the stones found so far are very large (no bigger than a fingernail) and no extremely small pieces, chips, or grains have been found either.  The area where they are located is maybe 20ft X 20ft…some showing on surface (no top soil in this area) and extending downward into the ground.  None have been located outside of this small area.

Location:

    See attached Adobe.PDF map.  Near Exit 79 off of I-20/59.  Cottondale Quadrangle.
    Geologic Map > Alluvium
with Pottsville and both Coker Formations in close proximity (few hundred yards) surrounding it.

Possible Mineral Candidates:

    Purple Corundum, or at least has the appearance at a distance and first glance?
[Some unidentified volcanic feature?]  {Very wishful thinking on my part!}
    Amethyst, a type of purple quartz?
    Quartz?
    Purple Apatite?
    Purple Fluorite?  (
some unidentified isolated MVT deposit)(Nah!  Nice try Bill)
    Foundry Slag?
    Glass Culls?
    Plastic Scraps?
   
Scary thought?  Did someone dump their amethyst collection out there???

Clues:

    Location:  River Terrace Deposit Gravel/Alluvium.
    Most of the alluvium is made up of quartz.
    Rounded and polished nature precludes normal slag or glass.
    Purple is a unique color for this area and is not normal?
   
What is the Hardness, Mhos Hardness Scale, from 1-10 with talc at 1 and diamond at 10.
Apatite at 5, Glass around 6, and quartz at 7.
    Pebbles had a hardness of 7.


My Personal Observation:

    Light to Medium purple coloration, mottled in appearance.
–    Stream Worn,

–    Quartz, either broken or pebbles.  A few Cleavage/crystal faces are shiny with glassy reflection indicating quartz.
–    Iron stained on surface giving them that purple look.  Broke 2 pieces open and the staining was on the outside.
–    Hardness was a definite 7/quartz according to my pocket knife.
–    Specimens were located within other stream worn gravel.  “Pleistocene River Terrace Deposits”. 

WHAT IS IT?

Send me your guesses and I will tell you my conclusion next week.

Thanks to Jeremy Jones, one of the Rock Hounds that reads this site.

Figure 1:    Rough Amethyst.
Figure 2:    Amethyst.
Figure 3:    Purple Stream Worn Corundum.
Figure 4:    Cottondale Purple – 1.
Figure 5:    Cottondale Purple – 2.
Figure 6:    Cottondale Purple -3
Figure 7:    Cottondale Purple – 4.
Figure 8:    Fluorite, Tumbled.
Figure 8:    Fluorite.
Cottondale.PDF Map Attached.


Geology in Action and in the News:
http://www.sci-news.com/news/geology



Enjoy!
Have A Good Week!

Randy/Randall
Amethyst Rough

Amethyst Rough

Amethyst

Amethyst

Corundum-purple, stream worn

Corundum-purple, stream worn

Cottondale Purple, photo 1

Cottondale Purple, photo 1

Cottondale Purple, photo 2

Cottondale Purple, photo 2

Cottondale Purple, photo 3

Cottondale Purple, photo 3

Cottondale Purple, photo 4

Cottondale Purple, photo 4

COTTONDALE

Tumbled Fluorite

Tumbled Fluorite

Fluorite

Fluorite

 
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