Boris and I, Chrystine, live at Lune River, in the far south of Tasmania. Located 100 kms from the capital city of Hobart our showroom and shop are situated among the remnants of an early Jurassic forest, famous for its rare, silicified fern fossils.
Boris began collecting for minerals and gemstones as a teenager and, together with his brother, built up a significant collection of minerals during the 1970’s. During this time he also studied and qualified as a geologist, applying his new knowledge in a number of mining situations around Australia in the following decade. He succeeded in his gemmological studies by correspondence, gaining his FGA in 1999 (London) and currently teaches aspects of gemmology to students in Hobart.
Having both established an early connection with the bush and the natural world it was simple enough that our shared life moved easily into searching for crystals, minerals and fossils. Our journeys take us around Tasmania, though for us, the western coastline is particularly appealing. Not only is that area rich in minerals and full of elemental stories of chemistry, but it contains a spectacular blend of big seas, giant granite boulders and old myrtle forests – such beautiful country, such a sense of remoteness. We have another reason for venturing west, now having a small mining lease, where, amongst early Devonian shales, we hunt for trilobites and other marine fossils.
Though we have a showroom and shop at Lune River (photo), we also take our mineral ‘wares’ to Salamanca Market, held in Hobart every Saturday. This is Australia’s largest outdoor market and attracts many visitors throughout the year. At Lune River, our rustic show-room, built from local materials, has evolved over the years and now includes a fluorescent mineral cabinet, displays of Tasmanian minerals and fossils, including Australian and World-wide, with the majority of specimens being for sale. We provide fossicking information, particularly for the local gemfields and give talks and lapidary demonstrations to school groups. Having a workshop enables us to cut, polish and tumble various stones.
Our enjoyment for finding beautiful stones and interesting fossils has not diminished, nor has our enthusiasm for showing people what our earth is made from, what can be found. This geologically-rich area next to the coast and bordered by mountains in the south-west national park, with nearby karst and thermal springs, offers anyone the chance to explore and find their own treasures.