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I Forge Iron

Prospecting for Iron Ore in Utah, Results

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My 16 year old said he didn't want to forge a knife out of purchased steel. He wanted to find the ore, and learn how to smelt it, refine it to carbon steel, then forge a knife. So we hopped in the car Saturday afternoon and took a drive.


This is what we found. The rock turned to dust when we tried to pick it out. Add water and it looks like red paint. I am not sure if it is a rich hematite or not.


We are looking for those of you here in Utah that smelt Iron ore.


Hope you enjoy the prospecting pictures. 






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You can buy a really handy little book I used to pick up the appropriate copy of depending on which state I was touring. It's called, "The Roadside Geology Of X"  Insert the state name of your choice in place of the X. checking with the university Geology dept. is good and will probably be able to recommend locations, provide maps to and such. As will the local Survey supplier. Our local K&E supply has more maps of specific features than a boy could want, not only mineral deposits but water, vegetation, population, demographics, cultural, historic, anthropologic, paleontologic. . . Well, you get the idea.


Another thought brought on my how many folk here own planes and fly, you might be able to find large iron deposits by talking to the guys at the local air field. Large iron deposits can mess up compasses and be navigational hazards. Sure, most guys use GPS but it's still a requirement to have at least two kinds of mechanical compass and know how to navigate with them.


Oh and that soil you've collected looks to be red ochre but that's from here. Have you tried running a magnet over it? the lower the iron content the stronger the magnet you'll need.


Frosty The Lucky.

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This deposit was about 50 miles from the Ochre Mountains. I could just take a drive over there, but I believe it's fenced off etc.  Kennecott Copper mine is there. We may take a road trip to Iron County and pick up magnetite. A 4 hour drive. It is in octahedral crystals there. 

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