2008-03-06 / Front Page

Mountain makes top 20

Lincoln County's Graves Mountain is number 20 on Charles Seabrook's list of "35 Natural Wonders in Georgia You Must See Before You Die."

Seabrook is a freelance columnist for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

In his comments on "The Mountain," he writes, "Rock hounds from all over the world come here for an amazing array of rocks and minerals."

Seabrook knows a good mountain when he sees one.

According to "Matrix: A Journal of the History of Minerals," the rutile crystals at Graves Mountain are considered the finest in the world. Rutile is a lustrous, dark red mineral commonly found in prismatic crystals.

In addition to rutile crystals, the mountain also features andalusite, baryte, gibbsite, gold, iridescent hematite, jarosite, kyanite, lazulite, paragonite pyrite, quartz, topaz, sericite, and much, much more.

Throughout the years, specimens of minerals found on Graves Mountain have made their way into private collections and museums throughout the world.

Twice a year, in May and October, lotwo cal residents and prospectors from all over the country are invited to visit the mountain for a "Rock Swap and Dig."

In addition to Graves Mountain, Seabrook's list also included:

.. The Okefenokee Swamp.

.. Cumberland Island National Seashore. According to Seabrook, "Former President Jimmy Carter called it one of his most favorite places on Earth."

.. Providence Canyon State Park in Stewart County.

.. Warm Springs in Meriwether County. "Naturally warm, soothing water bubbling from the Earth - Franklin D. Roosevelt came here for the treatment of polio," said Seabrook.

.. Brasstown Bald. "At 4,784 feet above sea level, it's Georgia's highest mountain; four states can be seen from the top," said Seabrook.

Each of these sites is less than a day's drive away and would make a great vacation spot for the entire family.

See Georgia first!!

(Editor's note: Portions of this article were reprinted with the permission of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.)

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