Full Programme of 2nd International Mindat.org Conference, Midelt Morocco, November 2012Please note this provisional programme is subject to change
Pre-Conference Field TripsWe will drive the whole time in 11 or 14-people mini-buses that are suitable for the roads in Morocco.
Wednesday 31st October - Marakech.
Registration day, no special programme, except for dinner in the evening for attendees.
1st November - Marakech Morning, after breakfast, trip to Sidi Rahal (about 1.5h drive). We will go to the quarries, dividing to visit separate workings so that no exposure is overcrowded. After that we come back to the village and go to visit a local dealer. He will prepare, lunch, tea and drinks and a small sale of minerals. After that we come back to Marakech for around 16.00. 1 hour for refreshing and changing. Later we divide people in 12-15 person groups and make guided trips - Jewish part of town, narrow streets, Jemna El Fhna, Medina etc. Around 19.00 we meet at the terrace with good view and after half an hour we go to eat at 2-3 stands on Jemna El Fhna.
2nd November - drive from Marakech to Agdez
Morning after breakfast we start from Marakech, and go to Tizi'n'Tichka - one of the highest passes in High Atlas. We will eat lunch there. We will stop on the road in 2-3 places for photos, then stop at Tichka. When going down towards the Sahara we will stop at Amerzgane area for agates near the road. From there we stop at shop Ali Mudud befor Ouarzazate for minerals. Short stop in Ouarzazte near old Kasbah for max 1hour. Drive to Agdez with 2 photo-stops. Dinner and night in Agdez.
3rd November - drive from Agdz to Bou Azzer and then near Alnif.
Early morning (8.00) after breakfast (7.00) we start from Agdz, and go to Bou Azzer (about 1 hour drive). We start at Bou Azzer Center with photos (we will probably not be permitted to enter), then we divide into 3-4 smaller groups and visit: Aghbar dumps, Oumlil Est quarry, Agoudal quarry and dumps, mini-quarry with erythrites, gersdorfite locality. After visits, we will drive to Kasbah meteorite (about 3 hours). In Meteorite we will have food near the swimming pool with local music groups. We provide 100 beers and people can buy additional cans (cost about 1.8 euro for small can). Only 35 rooms at the hotel but for other people berbers tents will be prepared with beds and everything like normal room. We will have plenty of mobile showers and toilets!
4th November - drive from Meteorite to Yassmina.
In the morning after breakfast we start with a stop in Alnif (fossil center) for about 45min. Then we go to Jebell Issimour (in the desert) to see workings for trilobites. After that, at around 13.00, we stop in Mcissi lunch, and we will see local trilobite dealers who will make a mini-show with original, good quality fossils. From Mcissi we will go to Erfoud (about 1.5 hours drive), we should be there around 15.30. We will stop there for 1 hour and visit "fossils factories", boutiques with minerals, fossils, souveniers etc. About 17.00 we start off towards the Yasmina Hotel (on the edge of huge dunes - Erg Chebbi). We will arrive there around 19.00. Dinner with live music (traditional instruments).
5th November - Visiting dunes and Taouz.
Morning after early breakfast, and photo sesion of dunes we take 4x4 cars. 4 people per car. We go first to Taouz with 2-3 photo stops on the way. In Taouz we will visit workings in groups, buy some specimens, and we can do some collecting (You WILL get extremely dirty and it will be hard on your clothes!) From there we drive to visit some archeological sites. After lunch we go to the other side of the dunes to Yasmina with photo-stops, arriving no later than 16.00. 1 hour for changing and shower. 17.00 we will form a caravan of about 100 camels! 1 person per camel. We ride to the top of dunes (highest ones are about 200 meteres) and stay there to see the sunset. After that come back with camels and dinner is waiting. Live music - berber style, more modern instruments. For this evening we will have 200 beers and, of course, vodka!
6th November - From Yasmina to Midelt.
Morning after breakfast, we drive to Jorf. Later we drive directly to Midelt. We will not arrive too late, to give people a chance to relax and recover from the field trips and prepare for the conference.
The Conference - 6th-9th NovemberDuring this time we will stay all the time in Tddart Hotel.
6th November - Midelt
Registration day. We will have an informal dinner for those who have just arrived and for those from the pre-conference field trip. Each participant will receive detailed programme, bag, etc.
7th November - Midelt.
After breakfast we start with opening session. Note. Talks are between 30 and 45 minutes, with time for questions, break and some shorter presentations inbetween. This programme is subject to change and will be confirmed nearer the date.
9am - Jolyon Ralph - What's new with Mindat.org
10am - Tom Praszkier - Mibladen - the most famous Moroccan Locality
11am - Georges Favreau - Mines and minerals of the Bou Azzer district
12pm - Walking tour of the mini-museum of minerals at the hotel, guided by Rashid Adnan.
Around 14.00 we go by mini-buses to Mibladen village. We will spend the rest of the day in a special house with a big patio. On the patio there will be berber tent with lunch, food, drinks. A mineral show will take place in several rooms around patio. Total number will reach around 20 dealers with good minerals, no fakes! People will visit rooms and in the same time there will be food and music at the patio. After dinner and a short party we will be back to Midelt around 21-22.00
8th November - Midelt.
Main conference day:
9am - Dimitry Tonkacheev - New data about sulphides from VHMS deposit, Tsumeb, Namibia
10am - Knut Edvard Larsen - The Minerals of Langesundfjorden district, Norway
11am - Cal Graeber - Mexican Minerals
12pm - Ray Hill - Field Collecting in Jamaica
2.15pm - Jolyon Ralph - Introducing Gemdat.org
3.15pm - Georges Favreau - Tachgagalt - source of the rare Mn minerals
4.15pm - Miro Ng - The Stone of Chinese Culture: Fei Cui (Jadeite Jade)-Classification & Varieties
5.15pm - Penny Williamson - New mineral displays at the University of Wollongong, Australia.
In the evening, eat at Casbah Assma (with music).
9th November - Midelt.
Main conference day:
9am -Georges Favreau - Imiter - the biggest silver mine in Morocco
10am - David Joyce - The Cobalt Silver Mining Area, Ontario, Canada
11am - Olav Revheim - Evje/Iveland pegmatite minerals
12pm - Mark Mauthner - Yukon gold crystals
2.15pm - John Magnasco - Twinning in minerals
3.15pm - Peter Lyckberg - A world tour of gem pegmatites
4.15pm - Dimitry Tonkacheev - A famous mineral deposit from the Russian Federation
5.15pm - Tom Prazkier - 3rd International mindat.org Conference - where and when?
6.00pm - Conference closing remarks.
In the evening we will have a big party at our hotel with local musicians.
Post-Conference field trips - 10-12 NovemberDuring this time we will stay at the same Tddart Hotel.
10th November - Trip to Mibladen.
A whole day trip after late breakfast to Mibladen - including ACF workings (may not be suitable for those who suffer from claustrophobia!), Lidal, gypsum workings, dinosaur traces, BoulMaden, and after these we will meet for a very special party in a secret location. Return that night to our hotel.
11th November - Trip to Kerrouchen.
A whole day trip including the Azurite/malachite locality and agate locality.. In the evening a big party in the Midelt hotel with grill by the side of the swimming pool.
12th November - Trip to Aouli and Sidi Ayed.
Whole day trip after late breakfest. Drive to Aouli and visit gorge, old mining ghost town etc. After that trip to Sidi Ayed mine - self collecting, buying specimens also possible from nomads. Dinner early, around 17.30-18.00 on the edge on gorge in berber tents. Great view, live music etc. Return for the night to our hotel.
13th November - Transport to airport
Transport back to airport for flights home.