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Lovozero-Khibiny-Afrikanda 2020


    It's been more than two weeks since I returned from the fields, and I'm only now starting the report. Strange... Previously, it poured out right away on the wave of impressions. Maybe age? But still not so much that it would not be drawn to the fields. Therefore, I finally realized the route conceived in winter by car along the Kola: Lovozero-Khibiny-Afrikanda. Initially, there were a lot of plans, but in the end the route became somewhat shriveled: back in Moscow, the idea of ​​​​visiting Olenitsa with its glendonites was discarded - because of the obvious unprofitability of visiting this point, and have I not seen glendonites? And some of the planned points remained unvisited already during the route itself. But overall, I was very pleased. The route was planned as a search and tourist route, because I had never been to the Khibiny before, and the trip there was just an introductory one. And if I find something, it's great. Well, of course, there was a desire to test yourself and the SUV in action. "I walk because I have legs" - (C) Nautilus Pompilius. "I'm driving because I have an SUV" - (C) mine. Initially, I planned to go with one of my friends, many wanted to, but no one could. Therefore, I went on my own and had to rely only on myself.

   So, on Sunday morning I started and stopped for the night, having already entered Karelia, on the shore of a picturesque lake in a pine forest. And twenty kilometers directly behind the lake, St. Petersburg began ... It could have been another two hours to go to spend the night on the route, but it so happened that it was here that my good friends who were going to rest in Karelia were supposed to stop for the night. It was almost impromptu: we agreed on the point of spending the night, but the day of departure coincided with us by accident. I arrived, waited an hour for my friends, who drove up in two cars, then their friends came to them.

In general, the overnight stay was fun, with barbecue and cognac. In the morning, in the rain, I got ready and left first without even having breakfast - after yesterday I didn’t feel like it ...

    On Monday, late in the evening, I drove into Revda. Further around the tailing dump of the Karnasurt mine along a rocky road, sometimes with small boulders, to the first Eastern stream. I was warned that the descent to it was washed out, and I had to be more careful. He went out twice - he aimed to get his wheels on a ridge 15 centimeters wide and not sit on his belly. Everything went well both there and back. What can you say about the next...

    Here is the second East Creek. This year it is full. Two years ago, we searched for a long time for a puddle in it where we could draw water. But this year, more snow fell on the Kola than in the entire history of observations. Therefore, the snowmelt has shifted for two weeks. And I usually showed up in these places two weeks later. Maybe that's why I saw more than ever a lot of blueberries and lingonberries. The bottom of my tent is now blue from crushed berries. Crossed the second East Creek and parked in his favorite place - at the foot of the mountain on a spring layer of carpet of blueberries and other vegetation - better than any mattress. Suddenly I heard a very faint thud of a car door being closed. Either in fact, or heard. And I forgot about him.

   At the top of the mountain - 62nd pegmatite. I will not talk much about him and the surroundings. Everything is described in my previous reports. I will note only the changes since last time. And they were. If earlier the concept of a pit was quite suitable for describing a pit, now some serious people have worked on it and deepened it to a funnel one and a half human height ... And they took everything out. Those. there were practically no business pieces on the dumps. Well, okay. We'll get it ourselves.

On the first day, I made several walks with stones from top to bottom and without stones - back. Oddly enough, the body behaved better than two years ago, even though I didn’t go to the gym much.

    For the first time at this point, I was able to detect natrolite in crystals. Usually it's massive. But when trying to separate the excess from the crystals, not only the excess, but also the necessary was separated, so half the sample remained.

I also grabbed a few samples of chalcedonic natrolite. It was not I who came up with such a name, but quite serious mineralogists.

I also got blue natrolite. More like sea water. I have often seen its veins here before. But this piece was almost all blue. I wonder what it will look like when it dries.

And then people appeared on the top of the mountain near the pegmatite. Also stone lovers, also from Moscow. Virtual friends on social networks. Was identified by them. It was their door knock I heard. But they stopped at the first East Creek. Those. I heard them half a mile away. Curious. We talked a little, and I dragged the backpack down.

    The next day, a desire arose to find a large piece of natrolite that I had hidden three years ago. I then went back up the upper road with two backpacks, coming back from one after the other, and then decided that this weight was superfluous. This year, large-block natrolite was not obtained, so a hidden piece would be very useful. Through the virgin soil, cutting off the distance, I climbed to the upper road that runs along the old quarry, where I hid this piece. But the road was improved this year, and new dumps buried my stash ... Well, let's go back to the 62nd pegmatite. The road from this place to the 62nd pegmatite goes through the 60th (ussingite) pegmatite. Of course, I visited him again. The canister of the used insecticide I threw out three years ago in the fire turned out to be intact. No one in the parking lot at the 60th pegmatite has made a fire for three years. (And no need to be sarcastic about the flammability: I first ripped the can to release the remaining gas). I took an empty can with me so as not to litter nature. I crossed the stream and the first thing I saw on the ussingite pegmatite was an insecticide spray thrown by someone else. I didn't pick him up. Those. the number of empty cans in the tundra remained unchanged. About this pegmatite, I heard from several people that they chose the latter. So I said to myself after visiting him three years ago. But this time I managed to find three pieces of ussingite for balls. And some pink pieces.

There was also a nice translucent piece of greenish feldspar. I even took it with me. But when it dried up, it became useless and was thrown away.

    Having finished with the 60th pegmatite, he went up to the 62nd. Got another bag. And then the fog descended. Visibility 50 meters.

It rained relatively heavily. I started walking down to the parking lot. It is impossible to get lost: on the left is a stream, below is a road. You can only deviate to the right or left of the straight line and make a small detour. I swerved to the left. This is probably a reflex: when you hear a stream that acts as a guide, it is somehow calmer. In general, I fell into the green - thickets along the stream, where it is more difficult to go. I even had to climb again with a backpack in order to walk along the edge of the green. The local bears didn't like my coming. I heard a very loud lingering roar, interrupted in the middle. I don’t know where this bear was, it seemed to me that the sound was coming from the opposite bank of the stream, but not a fact. Well, okay, they scare us, but we are not afraid. Then he walked, loudly singing songs, warning him of his presence. It would be better to sew a bell to the clothes. Its ringing scares away bears. And it is advisable not to walk along the bear trails - they can be recognized by the presence of bear droppings. It is not difficult to understand that bear droppings: as a rule, a bell sticks out of it ...))

    By the time I got there, I was literally wet to the underpants. And three years ago, under heavier rain, it was completely dry here. And all because he relaxed and made three mistakes. Nonsense, but as it turned out, having consequences. Slobber. I remembered Jack London and his story about the consequences in the cold. You have to be attentive to the little things.

   But the weather was more disappointing. The prognosis is unfavorable. There is a spare set of clothes, but it will last for a day, and it will not be possible to dry this one. You can dry it on yourself in a sleeping bag at night. But this is not a reason to improve mood. My friend solves the problem simply: he does not notice wet clothes, mosquitoes and other things at all. He even walks not in swamps, but in simple country slippers. I am not capable of such feats.

   The next morning there was no rain, but there was no sun either. The rain could start at any moment. According to the plans - to withdraw from the camp and go further along the northern slope to Flora. This is such a mountain. Rather, a hillock on a big mountain. I was there two years ago. This year's trip to Flora was purely entertaining. I didn’t plan to mine anything, I wanted to find the second point of narsarsukite, the existence of which I already assumed last time on another host rock in the fragments of narsarsukite found in the parking lot, but I reliably learned about its existence only two years ago when I got on the return train ... The problem is, that the road from the second East stream to Flora, or rather to Birch stream, where the parking is, is much worse. Boulders that need to be moved. It's a pity for the car, and I'm not a master of such driving yet. You never know what will happen to the car on the road. There was an idea to drive as far as possible, and when the road deteriorates, leave the car and go on foot. But the car needs to be removed from the road, and it’s bad with exits ... In general, I thought about it, thought until I realized: I just don’t want to go there. Probably, if there had been sunshine or there had been no rain yesterday, the mood would have been different. But today it is like this. If I don't want to, then why should I? I can afford to do what I want. Gathered the camp and went to the Northern Quarry. But for that, I had to go back…. Here I messed up. The reason for this is either the fact that I misunderstood the introductory words while still in Moscow, or something else - I have not yet figured it out to the end. But I went back by a different route, which turned out to be wrong. Those. he led where it was necessary, but not in the right way.

    In general, the road was normal by mountain standards, but one climb turned out to be difficult for my loaded SUV even with a 4 * 4 scheme. The car stopped in the middle of the climb. In principle, it's okay, I would roll back and go along the road that all normal people drive. But on the second attempt, the car still mastered the climb, and I ended up on the road that led me to the industrial site of the Karnasurt mine. I had to ask security to let me through the checkpoint. The guards were surprised how I got here at all, and after learning how I was driving, with the words “you guys are risky”, they raised the barrier. We're not looking for easy ways!
    The next was the North Quarry. To get there you have to go back to Revda. This is very good. Dairy shops are waiting for me. Without it, my stomach is restless. Half an hour later I was at the quarry. Still, own car in terms of mobility is very convenient. I planned half a day for the quarry. I had specific and familiar goals. Picked up a canister of UV-luminous hackmanite. I mined it according to the method I invented: I crawled along the bottom of the quarry with a UV flashlight, covering myself with a jacket for darkness. The spectacle from the side is still something ... But on the other hand, I scored the best, brightest, hackmanite. “We take only fillets!” (FROM).

I also picked up a canister of murmanite.

While crawling with a UV flashlight, I came across one specimen with a green dot glowing in the UV. I haven't seen this here before. "This is not casual!" (FROM). And already at home, I examined in detail the entire canister with the extracted material. And this is what I found:

Opal (green) with hackmanite (red). I dug in this quarry for five years, but nothing like this came across. Unfortunately, such material is scarce.

    After the Northern quarry, he started in the Khibiny.

    As I already mentioned, I have never been to Khibiny, but having a car under me and passing by, how not to call? The plans included dumps of the Kirovsky mine and Marchenko peak - a eudialytic dam. Why Kirovsky mine? And just like that, because I knew about its existence. Why not visit? And Marchenko Peak is a jumper - because it was recommended. They say there is a lot of mineralogically interesting.

However, entry this year to the Khibiny (Apatity-Kirovsk) is closed due to covid.

It is allowed to enter by train, but non-local cars are not allowed. L - Logic! There are cordons, but they say there are bypass roads that the locals know. The locals know the roads, and I know the locals... But that's true, by the way. Of course, I didn't break anything. I entered Apatity by train, took a car there, and then moved on in it. Do you believe me, of course? Can there be any doubt? The suburbs of Apatity struck me with meadows. Where are these meadows in the Arctic? Thick grass knee-deep. No hints of the usual polar flora.

    Through Apatity I entered Kirovsk, on the way to Apatity I met with acquaintances and handed over to them the raw materials brought from Moscow and already mined during this trip for balls. There will be balloons for the people! I liked Kirovsk. Thanks to the Kirovsky mine, a city-forming enterprise that is part of the AmoPhos group (the largest European fertilizer producer), the city has no financial problems. This can be seen from the roads, and from the buildings, and, as it seemed to me, from the mood of the people. The city is reminiscent of resort towns, scattered over the mountain slopes. This feeling is enhanced by the seagulls flying over it. After all, the city stands on the shore of a large lake.

   I drove straight to the dumps of the quarry. Set up camp. He glanced quickly at the dumps. The first feeling is sad. And how do I get there? The slopes are steep. The broken stone stopped at an angle of loose scree. A little touch - it will go down. Okay, I'll figure it out tomorrow. Went to sleep.

    At night it rumbled several times under me - an ear lying on the ground heard underground explosions in the mine. Power and strength! And the ear looking into the awning of the tent did not hear anything. Morning sunshine and good mood. ABOUT! And here is the path up through the woodlands, which I did not notice yesterday. I climb it to the top. I see a platform for unloading dump trucks, but I don’t see any traces of wheels or access roads. Probably, these are old dumps, there can no longer be anything interesting on them. Above, too, there are dumps, I rise higher. And there I find the first, albeit small, but pleasant eudialyte. I go around the dump from the side up. At the end, you have to storm the slope diagonally. And I'm at the top. This is the second platform for unloading dump trucks. There is also an access road and wheel tracks. Opposite, a kilometer away, through the access roads to the mine, there is a mountain cut almost vertically. Once every few hours, stones break off from it, causing large and small rockfalls. The sounds are like soft peals of thunder, after which a cloud of raised dust hangs over the mountain.

    I wander on top of the dumps. As a result, I collect not God knows what samples, but I don’t leave without eudialyte, lamprophyllite, sphene, astrophyllite, granular (sugar) apatite.

    I go down to the parking lot, from above I am overtaken by tourists returning from the pass. Here and the pass, it turns out, is. Then something led me, my head was spinning. I even had to sit down. Took a pill. Maybe not the right one, but unsuccessful prevention is better than successful resuscitation. I sit down to have lunch. Below is a group of young people. Where is the pass? I don't know, but it's there somewhere. I continue with lunch. Suddenly I hear the sound of scree. I am in time for the dump, when the youth, according to the navigator, has already overcome a third of the dump in the forehead. Hmmm... A generation that grew up with a gadget in hand... I show them the path. I break camp and advance to Marchenko Peak.

   The road to Marchenko Peak is a very picturesque tourist route. It runs along the river valley. Sometimes the road goes along the riverbed itself. The road is quite passable for SUVs. Only one place causes minor difficulties.

But there are snowfields, lakes, streams. Very nice! I decided for myself that even if I don’t get to the goal of the route, it’s not in vain. Impressive.

Two roads turn off to Marchenko Peak, before and after the peak, but then you still have to go. Roads are so-so. But there is a road coming from the rear. It does not reach only 200 meters. You need to go to it through the Beautiful Falls - the end point of the tourist route. Drove to the waterfall - admired. Really handsome.

I go further up, already to the peak. There are few people, but there are. They look at me with surprise. I was told about this road in Moscow "stony". This road to the waterfall was rocky, but this one was boulder!

Nevertheless, I climb up, trying to run into protruding boulders so as not to sit down. You have to get out - choose a route. SUVs along the way come across, but few. I'm moving slowly. A quarter of this area remains. And then ahead - a stone river.

At first, small boulders - I will pass. Then the middle ones were thrown aside. But then all the boulders with a large watermelon. Maybe I'll go, maybe I won't. But I'll kill the car for sure. I don't have the diameter of the wheels that this will run over yet, and it's not such a cheap car anymore to experiment like that. There is an option to set up camp, and tomorrow with a backpack - up. But something ran out of battery and the enthusiasm went out. I decide that enough feats, and we must return. Which is what I do. It is a pity, of course, that it was not enough.

    Always coming back, I tell myself: do not rush, do not relax. And then either I relaxed, or played it safe, going around the boulder - I gave it too much to the right, the edge under the wheel collapsed, and I flew off the road into a hole. The rear left wheel hung in the air. But the LAND CRUZER, who was resting next to his family, pulled me out on the 10th attempt. With a habitual movement, I put the rear bumper in place ... The engine malfunction light immediately lit up and began to warm up. Why would? I have crankcase protection from below and all other possible protection of the bottom. But with such a breakdown, in principle, it is impossible to go. You can't call a tow truck here. Waited half an hour. The oil does not go away, the liquid is at the level. I make a decision to go. I turn on the stove, so as not to warm up, and go. It's just amazing how much easier and faster it is to drive down a mountain down a familiar track than to move up an unfamiliar one in the same place. He flew to Kirovsk with a bullet. (After this trip, my fears about the road to Flora seem ridiculous to me). I don't get hot at speed. Turned off the stove. Oil and fluids are still in place. I decide to go like this. The decision turned out to be correct, and the breakdown was nonsense. I stop for the night in the same meadow. Motor gliders are diving down on me, or what do they call a flying wing with an engine?
   But before returning to Moscow, one more point - Afrikanda. Afrikanda is a village on the Kola Peninsula, not far from the Kola highway. According to legend, the strange name Afrikanda appeared thanks to railway workers who once said “Well, it’s hot here, like in Africa” - that’s how the village was named. In fact, there are two Afrikandas: Afrikanda-1 and Afrikanda-2. Afrikanda-1 once served a mining and processing plant, which is now out of operation and completely destroyed. Afrikanda-1 has also died - multi-access panel houses are completely empty. There was only an abandoned quarry - my goal. People still live in Afrikanda-2, but the village, to put it mildly, does not thrive.
    A fairly good and, surprisingly, paved road leads to the quarry. It's in the forest! But my navigator leads me there in a different way - bad. The SUV does the job. I will already be returning back along the cobblestones. The quarry is small, surrounded by a dirt road, with an exit to the quarry itself. The place, oddly enough, is quite lively: judging by the passing soldiers and fuel trucks, some part is standing in the forest. Cars regularly drive to it, plus the soldiers themselves go, plus motorcyclists drive - they have fun. And also mushroom pickers and hunters. This made me a little tense - there is nowhere to hide. You never know what comes to the mind of the local gope. He hung a hunting knife on his belt for impressiveness, but except for opening canned food, he was not needed.
    Titanium-magnetite ore was once mined in the quarry.

According to the data I have, it was possible to get budget titanite there and, my main goal, knopit. Knopite is a type of perovskite with a high content of rare earth metals (up to 10%). Moreover, the shape of the knopit is not in cubes, as we are used to with perovskite, but in pyramids. Friends suggested where to look for. Although skepticism sounded on the knopit - last time almost nothing was found. The Titanite was right where it should have been. But with the knopit, the story turned out to be more interesting. In the end I found it, not exactly where the arrow had been placed on the photo of the quarry, although in the same direction, and not at all in the host rock that I was told to look for. But in order.

   Arrived at the quarry in the evening. While setting up the camp, while looking around - there was not much time to search. But I found one crystal in the wall of the quarry. I began to disassemble the wall - I found a few more. On this day ended. But vague doubts began to torment me: the ores are titanium-magnetite, and what if these are not knopite crystals, but magnetite, which is not so exotic? Moreover, the shape of the crystals was somewhat different from the shape of knopit crystals from this deposit, which I had seen before. Those. the shape is the same, but somehow more rounded or something. Made references. It is easy to distinguish magnetite from knopite: magnetite is well magnetized, but knopite is not. There was no magnet with me, but then my assumption-fear was confirmed - the crystals from this point of the quarry turned out to be magnetite - they were perfectly attracted to the magnet.

   Morning has come. I quickly recruited a budget sphene and set off to look for the main thing - knopit.

     Oddly enough, I did not see any vein of the host rock in which I was told to look. Maximum - individual inclusions. At the same time, on those samples of knopit that I saw earlier, this host rock was not there, but there was another one. I began to look more closely and examine the zones with the rock that was on the crystals I had seen earlier. And, lo and behold!, soon in the side of the quarry in this enclosing rock I saw a large, well-formed knopit crystal. How they left it on the wall - I do not understand. I began to disassemble the rock, and the material went! In general, I discovered a cavity previously opened by someone, filled with small crystals of knopite (or maybe magnetite? - judging by the same certain roundness). The interior of the cavity was filled with another rock, with numerous large knopite crystals. I began to disassemble the rock, freeing the cavity from the crystals.

Soon the cavity was empty. He began to search in the vicinity of her, sorting out the rocks around, but the knopit ended. I already thought that this was it, but I noticed that there was still some host rock left in the depths of the cavity. To clear my conscience, I removed it and found that the cavity goes deep into the wall, squeezing between two mineral bodies to the right and left of it. I began to make my way deeper, which, of course, is more difficult, and the knopit went again. The last crystal turned out to be one of the best. He sat deep, I hammered around with a hammer, afraid to hit him, but fatigue took its toll - indifference to a possible loss grew. After all, it's been eight hours of continuous hammering. But lucky. The crystal was exposed and separated from the rock before I hit it. Surprisingly, I started and finished mining Knopite with two of the best crystals.

A good chord to close the trip! The material is not boring. And it was found not quite there and not at all in the breed that I was told, but in the one that I was looking for. I recently heard a phrase by Louis Pasteur that I really liked: "When observation begins, luck favors only the prepared mind." Obviously, in this case, my mind was sufficiently prepared. I give myself a thumbs up!

    The next day I started back to Moscow. After a couple of hours of driving, I began to feel sleepy. I drank water, listened to music, slapped my cheeks - to no avail. I already had the experience of falling asleep at the wheel - 10 years ago. Then I was awakened by gravel, pounding on the bottom, when the car pulled over to the side of the road. And since then I knew that if you fall asleep at the wheel, it does not mean that you drop your head - it just turns off your vision. And you sit as if alive. I was well aware of what was happening to me this time. But still missed the point. Fortunately, my consciousness, aimed at combating sleep, turned off later than my vision. At some point, it realized that it was dark before its eyes, and with a cry of "... ah!" I woke up. It was a fraction of a second, the car was driving exactly on the road. I stopped and took a nap for an hour in the forest belt. I've never done this before - but it really helps! That was enough to make him awake. By the way, compared the fuel consumption. On a loaded car at 140 km / h, it is almost one and a half times more than at 110 km / h. Even at a distance of 2000 km in one direction, the budget runs up ... I drove back according to the rules. Biiiiiiin, well, how long! And I'll go!

The report is finished.

You might be interested in the pages:

- Minerals for sale from this trip тег "Кола2020".

- About the Lovozero mountain range "Lovozero. Kola Peninsula".

- About all my trips to Lovozero: 2020г   2018г   2017г   2016г   2010г  

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