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Southern Urals. Novotemirskoye - Paris 2017

       For me, almost every trip to the fields is in spite of, not thanks to. I don't know about others. I was going to grab three working days on the second of May and visit the Novotemirskoye deposit of ornamental opal, which is relatively close to Magnitogorsk. But these were just wishes. I didn’t have time to specifically plan and think over anything - unforeseen family circumstances appeared, and the idea had to be abandoned. And suddenly, two days before the second of May, unforeseen circumstances were transferred to after the holidays. Yesterday morning I didn’t plan anything, and already tonight I have in my hands electronic plane tickets to Magnitogorsk. How lucky these days the airline "Northern Wind" round-trip tickets at the price of a locomotive and two times cheaper than other airlines! And the flight is only two hours. And the train would be...

In general, he quickly got together, clarified everything and started. But this is my first trip to the fields by plane, usually by train. Therefore, the gas for the burner was taken away from me back in Moscow at Sheremetyevo. It turns out you can not even in the luggage. Well, we will overcome problems as they arise - not the first time. As he looked into the water, there were no problems. But this is how to perceive: who has problems, and who has adventures. The main thing is that adventures do not go off scale ...

Upon arrival in Magnitogorsk, it turned out that, contrary to the Internet, it was impossible to leave the airport directly by public transport. Or a taxi, or 800 meters on foot to the nearest bus stop. Well, I went camping and I can't walk some measly 800 meters? Cheerfully, under two backpacks (luggage 20kg (a entrenching tool, however ...) and hand luggage 10kg) walked up and left for only 40 rubles. First of all, I bought gas and 5 liters of water in Magnitogorsk - they said that it was bad with water there. Another minibus - and I'm at the bus station.

But before I leave the city, I will tell you about it and my route.

Magnitogorsk - founded in 1929 in connection with the construction of a metallurgical plant at the discovered iron ore deposit of Mount Magnitnaya. The famous "Magnitogorsk" is a great construction site of the era of Soviet industrialization. The population of the city is 417 thousand people - whiter than in other regional cities. One of the largest world centers of ferrous metallurgy. At the moment, Mount Magnitnaya has long been torn down. In its place is a huge quarry. But there is still enough raw material. In addition, there are Kubais deposits and supplies from Kazakhstan nearby. The plant is located on the opposite bank of the river from the city. The Urals are working with might and main - it smokes with all the pipes. Although I was told that this is not the same smoke that was. In recent years, emissions have noticeably decreased - filters and modern furnaces are being installed. The factory is huge! Particularly stands out against the background of the brown spot of the plant is the long orange building of the new workshop - rolling mill 5000 - commissioned in 2009. Its length is over a kilometer. It looks big even from the window of an airplane. The city itself made a good impression on me, although I did not see new housing under construction, but maybe I drove through the wrong quarters.

After Magnitogorsk, my path was to pass through Ferchampenoise to the Novotemir quarry. Then the cultural program - on the way back, drop in to Paris, wander around near the Eiffel Tower. This is true and not a joke. Ferchampenoise, Paris, Varna, Balkans, Chesma are the names of settlements in the Chelyabinsk region. They are named so in honor of the victory of Russian weapons in the war of 1812. The entertainer was the then governor ... And in the village of Paris, relatively recently, the Eiffel Tower was also built. Current. But more on that later.               

So, I'm at the bus station in Magnitogorsk. For the last time, before five nights at the quarry, I had a bite of civilian food in the buffet. The dumplings were not bad. The passenger cannot lock the toilet with the key. A furious administrator runs out: “They broke the lock again! Change the lock for the third time! Be careful with the doors at home! That's it, there will be no more toilet for you! In front of another suffering passenger, he still manages to lock the toilet and forever takes away the key. How familiar ... "This is Russia, baby!". I take a bus ticket to Ferchampenoise:

- Do I have to pay for a backpack?

- Do you have sports equipment? Its transportation is free.

- Inventory - I nod my head, referring to the equipment for stone mining and remembering the instructions of my first Commerce Boss: “You can’t cheat. You can keep silent and keep silent. ”

I never learned to pronounce the French word Ferchampenoise. It turned out - and not necessary. The ungrateful descendants of the entertaining governor also never learned how to pronounce him.

- The bus to Fershanka is served on the first platform! says the loudspeaker.

I do not immediately understand that Fershanka is Ferchampenoise. This name is used by everyone and always. And they only write Ferchampenoise. I go out to the platform. The bus turns out to be a Lada Largus passenger car. Rather, it is the floor of the bus. Tickets sold for more than one vehicle. Therefore, we are traveling in a motorcade of two cars. Crossing the Ural River. It divides Europe and Asia in this place. It was in it that Chapaev drowned. He could not swim from one part of the world to another. The Ural is quite wide. Not every Chapai will swim to its middle.

An hour on a good empty road. Groomed fields, herds of cows, signs with the names of settlements, known to me from mineral bindings, flash towards me. Gradually, a picture of the location of previously known bindings is emerging in my head. We reach Ferchampenoise. A taxi is already waiting for me there. I reload and move on. Ahead of the dumps of the South. It’s a pity that I was nearby, but I didn’t dig up the crystal there - it’s a cult place. If I had my own car, I would have definitely stopped by. We turn to Novotemirskoe. The road is densely surrounded by birch trees with delicate spring foliage. Beautiful! The driver slows down and gives me completely in dissonance:

How I dislike this place!

- ???

Roe deer are constantly running across here. Young growth so directly without looking back under the wheels rushes. In winter, there is absolutely no chance to slow down.

Already at dusk we arrive at the lapel of the road to the quarry. But in the dark we can't find it. I let the driver go and pitch a tent not far from the road in an inconspicuous place - tomorrow I will find it in the light and go myself. It's close here. I'm trying to send an SMS that I got there. Oops ... But there is no connection. How can I call a taxi back? Okay, I'll figure it out in the morning. I go to bed. The forecast promises minus two at night. I already went through this. I warm up and fall asleep.

A terrible thing happens at night - lightning diverges at the sleeping bag. By the light of a headlamp, I try to fix it, but I only completely tear off the slider. The sleeping bag turns into a blanket. This is bad. A blanket does not keep you warm like a sleeping bag. I warm myself with what I haven’t warmed yet, wrap myself in a blanket like a pipe, pressing down the edge of the blanket with my weight. I fall asleep. By morning, my feet were still pretty cold. But probably not extreme. Otherwise, it would be heated by gas. I probably wake up early from the cold - at 3-30 Moscow time. Local time is 5:30. Light. Birds are singing. Wonderful weather. But frost on the tent. I climb a hillock and immediately see the right path. I pack a tent and after half an hour I'm at the quarry.


    Because there is not a cloud in the sky, I decide not to set up camp at first, but first to explore the quarry in order to stop closer to the place of work. The quarry is small, but larger than it might seem at first glance. Slowly, for two hours, I examine it completely. A quarry for rubble from serpentinite, abandoned, but not completely. There is a well-worn road to a place where, obviously, crushed stone is mined from time to time. In the middle of the quarry there is a lake from melting snow. Absolutely clear pure water. If there is not enough water, there will be something to drink. And really used it on the last day. Boiled, of course. In the quarry and now in some places there are snowfields. In the place where I was advised to dig, because opal was found there 10 years ago, I did not find not only signs of opal, but even traces of diggings. I did not dare to dig without such signs. I found a place where most of all the fragments of opal of decent quality and decided to dig there. I pitched a tent upstairs behind a dump nearby. Above - because the view is more beautiful there - a field, a grove ... Behind the dump - because there is a chance to go unnoticed, if anything ...

But where is the connection? I climb all the highest dumps - there is no connection. Okay, let's look.

I'm talking about connection. Opal will be mined. I get down and start digging. Quite quickly, the veins of opal are found. Soon, moving along them, I find an opal lens. The opal sits in dense serpentinite. It's hard to break it. The problem is that opal itself is fragile. And it’s difficult to take large blockiness without a gas cutter: no matter how hard you try, it still splits as it wants. However, something does work. It's evening. The lens is selected. I'm moving on new veins. Here is a good piece. But you have to get rid of the excess. Oh-yoyoyoyoyo!... A sledgehammer on the finger! Yes, how good, from the heart ... The glove did not save. On this high note, the work day is over.


                The next morning was good because the night was warm. Blackened fingernail. Bullshit - it will pass! I'm going down the hole. I see an ill-fated stone with an unbroken edge. What exactly didn't I like about it? It was quite possible to leave it like that ... I continue to disassemble the serpentinite. By the middle of the day, a small trench is already obtained. And today, by the way, is May 9th! I celebrate Victory Day in my own trench. I chip off rather thick pieces of opal veins.



Oh-yoyoyo!!! Shot in the back. I know what is it. I have a problem with my spine. But this hasn't happened in a long time. Somehow, like a wounded soldier, I crawl out of the trench. Here he scribbled about the trench! 10 minutes I cut circles around until the sharp pain turns into a dull one. Then I climb back to dig, trying not to bend and choose positions. But productivity and enthusiasm are not the same ... I go to bed early, having previously sipped cognac for the Victory.

Morning can no longer be called good ... During the night the body became numb, the back does not straighten at all. You have to get up very slowly, five centimeters through the pain. But it is familiar - it will pass. However, it is not very pleasant to find yourself alone, semi-immovable without communication. But really, no big deal. I will warm up - it will become easier. And the road is only 2.5 km from me. I decide to save myself this day, walk around the quarry, collect small samples from the surface, explore the quarry. But what about communication? How will I get out of here? Novotemirskoye is a dead-end small village. Public transport does not go there, and the local is not particularly. Yes, even my belongings ... In a straight line to the village through the field, about four kilometers, but you won’t get there - the river separates. I'll go to the river - maybe at least there is a connection there? There is not. We'll have to go to the village 5km bypass. Went. Fishermen are coming from the lake, not locals. They have a connection. But not beeline. I go further. I walk 3.5 km - finally another oncoming car. “And in our village, no one has a beeline.” So, in the village I have nothing to catch in the literal and figurative sense. I'm coming back. It starts to rain for a long time. I lie down to rest, read and sleep.

Morning of the next day. ABOUT! The pain is less, the amplitude is greater. It was expected. I draw your attention to the fact that there are also some mounds on the field below the quarry. I go down to them. It does not look like a quarry - a very large pit filled with water, with a dike around. The extracted breed is something else. There are layers that I originally took for glandular. And then the unexpected awaits me - I find green in the ferruginous, and I understand that the ferruginous is actually copper, and the green is malachite. There are quite a few of them. Ural malachite, however! When blue comes across among the green - clearly azurite - there is no doubt about the copper nature. Only later, in Moscow, I find out that this pit is an ancient copper mine of the Bronze Age. A couple of pieces from the found are slightly different in color - it looks like Elite. It will, of course, have to be checked. I would like some copper exotics such as Brochantite, but this is unlikely. I walk along the embankment, trying to find cuprous pieces with the inclusion of malachite-azurite like Zarinite. Hopelessness. There is practically no azurite, and malachite is only along the cracks in thin crusts. However, these minerals are not described in the deposit. At least, I did not find it on well-known sites. This is interesting. I am collecting some samples. (I found out in Moscow - a description of malachite and azurite is given in the article "ANCIENT COPPER MINE NOVOTEMIRSK (SOUTHERN URAL)" Yuminov A.M., Ankushev M.N., Rassomahin M.A. Geoarchaeology and archaeological mineralogy. 2015. No. 2. C 78-81. But my hypothesis about Elite should be tested. I checked it in 2001. A sample of an unusual color for this mine turned out to be chrysocolla.)


Today is the hottest day - and ticks are clearly activated. But I have triple protection: netting on the tent, raid-off and grafting. The enemy will not pass! But how to call a taxi? There are almost no cars on the road during the day. Go to the village to ask someone else's phone to call? I don't like to depend on others. Go in the other direction to the highway (I received a text message while driving from there) - this is up to 10 km in one direction. It's also possible in principle. But both options are not ice. Okay, I'll go and scout the hillock on the other side of the quarry - which is the furthest from the road. I go to the mound - something in the form of a mound on the crest of the field. It overlooks the second lake. There are cows grazing there. Probably there is a shepherd and he has a connection. But let me check here. No shit! Three strips! Hello mother! Hello friend! I'll call a taxi tomorrow.

Tomorrow, without any problems, from the cherished mound I call a taxi the next morning. I find mounds even lower down the field. Old small flooded quarry. Nothing special. In the earthen side I see veins of milky quartz. I go further. And in last year's grass I find better pieces of it. It must have been hidden by someone. One piece even has crystals. Only the heads are not quartz. And the cleavage is clear, rhombohedral. This is not quartz: dolomite or calcite. Also, by the way, these minerals at the deposit are not described on the sites. I return to the base.

Suddenly, a bird call is heard overhead. Two white swans fly over me. White big birds slowly make a U-turn over a birch grove and fly away. One of them comes back and sits far away on the water in the floodplain. Amazing! Very nice. I have never seen these birds in flight. Graceful floating carcasses in the zoo still do not give a complete picture, because a bird becomes a bird only in flight. Then the taxi driver told me that after Magnitogorsk reduced emissions, swans, eagles and other living creatures began to return. They were there before and then disappeared. Now I saw a lot of eagles, gray cranes, ducks. There are rabbit litter everywhere. And a half-eaten goat's leg means wolves... I saw droppings and traces of roe deer and elk. I saw a large and fat bright green lizard and ticks gently tickling their legs.

The weather starts to deteriorate - I start to pack. In the evening, a heavy and long downpour falls. This is the downpour, which, according to the forecast, was supposed to be tomorrow morning on the day of departure. It's good that it started earlier. There is hope that it will end sooner. Packing up the camp and walking half an hour to a taxi in the downpour is not very pleasant. And so it happened. The downpour ended by nightfall, and the next day was the same beautiful weather as on the day of arrival.

At eight in the morning I am loaded into a taxi along with three boxes of dug stones. Let's go to Paris! Village-village, but the tower is good! The current radio tower is 54 meters high. They say it lights up at night. But there is no money to replace burnt out light bulbs... In front of the tower, ducks are splashing in a puddle, and there is an advertising stand nearby - there is also an ostrich farm. Australian ostriches are bred in Russian Paris. How confusing we are...


            Well, the cultural program has been completed. We go to Magnitogorsk, hand over the cargo to a transport company. Next - by minibus to the airport. She even turned off the route at my request and drove to the airport building. The passengers of the minibus look around in surprise - where have they been brought? I am met by an empty airport building. Then other passengers will follow. There was a full house on the airfield - as many as two planes. When he arrived, there was only ours. Two hours later in Moscow, 12 hours later I am writing this report...


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