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Romania, Bulgaria, Kosovo, Poland


This report is a short foto+text story about our touring trip in 2007 with Jeffrey Scovil. Jeff had a photographic workshops during The Lwowek Crystal Summer  on 14-15 VII 2007 (That is the biggest collectors` event in Poland. It takes place annually in Lwowek Slaski, Silesia, Poland. But... let me tell the story chronologically.

After The Saint-Marie Show we went with Jeff to Warsaw (Poland). There we visited a few museums, and in a few days we began our trip. In the first place we went to Romania, to see the famous polymetalic deposits in Baia Mare area. Unfortunately during our visit  the last mines in this area were in the progress of closing down. We had the last opporunity to acquire some specimens, visit dumps and to see mining buildings, tarins, shafts etc. (just after we left all equipment was removed, buildings were destroyed etc.). We visited also the old part (Sector I) of Baia Sprie Mine, and the old parts of the Cavnic Mine.

After some time that we spent in Baia Sprie, Herja and Cavnic we went to Brad to visit the famous Gold Museum. The museum is really sad (tons of dust, old labels, ugly showcases etc) despite the technical state of the exposition some of the specimens owned by this museum are really extraordinary.

From Brad we moved South, we crossed Danube River, big part of Bulgaria, and finally we arrived to the beautiful Rhodope Mountains. There, in Madan, we spent a few days visiting dumps, mining areas, miners` houses, garages with minerals etc. We also had the opportunity to visit the Mineralogical Museum and Museum of Miners` Work (classic  example of a communist style museum).

From Bulgaria, we moved west, we crossed Serbia and arrived to Kosovo (that was not yet a free country at the time). Of course in Kosovo, we visited the famous Trepca Mine, near Kosovska Mitrovica. We had the possibility to go undergroud and collect some specimens. We also visited the Mineralogical Museum and a number of miners` houses, we bought a few specimens (the majority of  specimens offered by Trepca miners are of really poor quality).

From Trepca we came back to Poland. There we visited Krakow (one of the most beautiful Polish cities), then we went to Sudety Mts. where  we explored the quarries of granite in the Strzegom area. At this point of our trip we were only a several dozen of kilometers to Lwowek Slaski, were Jeff held a great workshop - world first workshop of mineral photography !!!

Tomasz Praszkier


The entrance to Baia Sprie town, with the miners hammers crossed above. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Main adit to the Baia Sprie mine. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Jeff takes his first photos in Baia Sprie, sometimes we had to wait for him really long... Fot. T. Praszkier.


We are entering the workings of Baia Sprie - Sector I - famous for the barite finds. Fot. K. Ogorek.


One of numerous pockets with barite crystals. Fot. T. Praszkier. 



Durring this visit we collected only one good barite crystal, but we had a lot of fun. Fot. K. Ogorek. 


Jeff near the main entrance to the Cavnic Mine, in the background a typical communist memorial to miners.
Fot. T. Praszkier. 


Our friend Sorin guided us through the old parts of the Cavnic mine. Fot. K. Ogorek. 


The main entrance to the Herja Mine, the sign "Noroc Bun" means "Gluck auf". Fot. G. Sobieszek. 


Giant (size of a building) mosaic presenting the miners, Herja mine buildings. Fot. T. Praszkier. 


One of numerous miners` houses that we visited durring our stay in the area. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Spectacular Huendoara castle that we visited. Fot. K. Ogorek.



Crystalized gold on quartz from Rosa Montana area, Museum of Gold in Bradt. Fot. K. Ogorek.



Incredible specimen of gold - so-called "butterfly" from Rosa Montana area, Museum of Gold in Bradt. Fot. K. Ogorek.



Big, over 10 cm long, gold specimen from Rosa Montana area, Museum of Gold in Bradt. Fot. K. Ogorek.


We are waiting for the ferry at the Romanian side of Dunbai. Fot. K. Ogorek.


After the long journey we arrived to Madan. Fot. K. Ogorek.


Train going to Krushev Dol Mine. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Destroyed, but still working, mining equipment. Fot. T. Praszkier.


The Museum of Crystals in Madan. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Socialist realist painting, big size. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Selecting specimens in the miners house. Fot. K. Ogorek.


A nice mangano-calcite from Zlotograd. Fot. K. Ogorek.


From Madan we moved directly to Kosovo, to the Trepca Mine. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Polimetalic veins - underground in the Trepca Mine. Fot. K. Ogorek.


In the main adid to theTrepca Mine - we just left after our undergroud visit. Fot. K. Ogorek.


Jeff is carrying the best museum specimen that I ever seen from Trepca. We bought it one year later to the Spirifer collection. Fot. T. Praszkier.


Selecting specimens in the miners house. Fot. T. Praszkier.


"Beautiful" mineralogical art from Trepca. Fot. T. Praszkier.


The final part of our long trip - the workshops is Lwowek. Fot. M. Bienkowska.


Jeff taking a photo. Fot. M. Bienkowska.


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