Rockhounding near Detroit is fairly common, especially nearer to places that share a border with Ohio.
Some of the best places are along shorelines and near closed mines, which will be in more detail in the list below.
Rockhounding Near Detroit
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There are a lot of diverse rocks and minerals, as well as beautiful scenery where the rocks are found.
Michigan, in particular, is famous for Petoskey stones, and in the upper peninsula copper, agate and isle royale greenstone can be found.
The state symbols include chlorastrolite, Petoskey, and isle royale greenstone.
People typically find Petoskey stones, chlorastrolite, agate, chalcedony, and copper minerals throughout the rockhounding hot spots in Michigan.
A visit to Port Huron is around an hour’s drive.
There is a variety of stones to be found because of how the waves hit certain areas. Puddingstone is one that migrated from Canada.
The stone is a combination of black chert, red jasper, and white quartzite.
Lake Superior agate can also be found.
The agate has bands of cream, orange, red and white.
The Petoskey stone is a favorite stone to find in Michigan, and there are a lot of Petoskey stones to find.
The stone is made of rugose coral that is thought to have lived hundreds of millions of years ago.
Due to a rise in water conditions, there have been more rocks to find around Lake Erie.
There is a variety of rocks to be found, including the state stone, Petoskey.
Petoskey was formed during the formation of the great lakes.
Sandstone can be found near the lake.
The stone is light brown or tan and is named appropriately for its color.
One of the largest sandstone quarries can be found in Amherst, Ohio, right off of Lake Erie.
Another stone found is Shale, which is used commercially to make brick, tile, and cement.
Siltstone is another sedimentary mudrock found in the area.
The rock is similar to shale, but doesn’t have the same layers and particles will be gritty.
Other rocks in the area include Gypsum, which there is a lot of in Lake Erie.
The rock has been used in fertilizer, plaster of Paris, flux, and as filler in paper.
The rock is usually clear or a dull white.
Granite can be found with its specks of black, white, red, or clear throughout.
Rhyolite is similar to granite but has a fine grain in comparison.
Rhyolite is typically found in Precambrian rocks. Flint, which is a quartz found along the lake, has been used for centuries as hunting knives and other tools.
Honeycomb coral can also be found and is tightly packed corallites, giving it a similar appearance to that of a honeycomb structure.
Trilobites are a more commonly found fossil in Sylvania, Ohio.
A famous cement quarry, Medusa Quarry, is in Sylvania and trilobites can be found there typically.
Those who rockhound in the area have also searched for Silica Shale deposits.
People have been interested in the fossils in the area for a long time, even while the quarries were open.
Olander Fossil Park
Olander Fossil Park has a variety of fossils that are from millions of years ago.
The park has coral, brachiopods, and other items from prehistory.
The park has an acres-wide rock quarry, where the public can search for fossils.
There are also specimens in shale, which can be broken into with bare hands.
In the Medusa Quarry, fossils can be found, including various specimens like Calcite and Marcasite.
The quarry is an abandoned quarry developed by the Medusa Portland Cement Company, then transferred to the France Stone Company before it was eventually abandoned.
Fossils like Trilobites and Spirifer have also been found there.
Lakeport State Park
A variety of stones and fossils can be found around the waterline at Lakeport State Park.
They have a day-use area as well as campgrounds that can be used.
There is a bridge that can be used to get to the beach from the day-use area.
Around the waterline there are agates, coral fossils including horn coral, Petoskey stones, pudding stones, and sectarian geodes.
The pudding stone, or plum-pudding stone, got its name because it was thought that it looked like boiled suet pudding.
The stone is mostly white quartzite with jasper pebbles.
Lakeport Campgrounds gives access to Lake Huron.
The campgrounds are within Lake Port State Park, which has picnic tables and camp pads.
Metal detecting is available there, so any stones with iron or other metals can be found around the campgrounds.
Other Various State Parks and Beaches
Many state parks in Michigan have access to the beaches of Michigan.
There are some nearby parks and beaches in Ohio that aren’t too far from Detroit as well.
At these beaches, there are plenty of rocks and fossils to find.
Petoskey stone can be found at most beaches, as well as Charlevoix stone.
Charlevoix has a pattern similar to coral and is very similar to Petoskey stone.
Other rocks like Basalt, Pyroxine, Limestone can also be found in these areas.
Some places to visit include Lake St. Clair, Sterling State Park, Fort Gratiot, and Van Buren Park Beach.
Near Detroit, there are a variety of places to go rockhounding.
Making sure to know what to look for is very important, especially when looking for more rare stones.
Sandy beaches do not tend to be the best places to check for stones.
On the rockier beaches there is a better chance of finding some interesting stones.
These rocks are not necessarily exclusive to the shoreline either, they may be hiding out near trees and other soil.
Visiting these beaches after storms can also yield more stones and a different variety.
A storm can move around the sand with wind and waves, making it easier to spot certain stones as well as allowing certain stones to wash up onto the beach.
Before taking any of the rocks home, it is important to know that no more than 25 pounds can be collected from the beaches per year.
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