Mr. M’s Lost Sample: Pure Gold

Pure Gold was one of the early samples that Mr. M collected on his trips through the Crystal Cave. When he and Max hopped into the cave aiming for the California Gold Rush they never realized how hard it would be to collect a nice, large sample of solid gold. During the Gold Rush, the gold that the miners found in California was mostly in the form of chips, flakes, and nuggets. These small samples just would not due for Mr. M and his fabulous rock and mineral collection!

When Mr. M and Max traveled in the 1851, they landed in the American South Fork River, just like Emma and Brody on their adventure in Rusher’s Gold. Luckily for Max and Mr. M, no one saw their crash-landing…or so they thought. Rusher was actually standing along the edge of the forest near the bend in the river and saw them fall from the sky with their fluffy white dog, Aspen.

As Max and Mr. M hunted through the river for larger pieces of gold, Rusher confronted them and asked how they fell out of the sky. To their surprise, Rusher believed their explanation about the magical crystal cave and agreed to help them find the samples they wanted for their collection. In Rusher’s Gold, you learn how Rusher helped Mr. M and Max collect their extra-large samples of gold!

Gold Facts

Gold is a precious metal that is only one element, unlike many of Mr. M’s other mineral samples, which are made of more than one element. Gold is considered a native element, a metal, and a mineral.


  • Color:  Gold
  • Luster:  Metallic
  • Streak:  Gold, Rich Yellow
  • Cleavage:  None
  • Hardness:  2.5 – 3
  • Special Properties: Malleable (can bend easy)

Similar Minerals

Two minerals look very similar to gold at first glance. These minerals are pyrite and chalcopyrite and are often called “Fools Gold” because they look so similar to real gold; however, their properties are very different. The way to tell pyrite and chalcopyrite from real gold is the streak color, weight (specific gravity), and hardness. Real gold has a gold colored streak and is very soft and heavy. Pyrite and chalcopyrite have a greenish-gray streak, are harder than real gold and are lighter in weight. Gold has a higher specific gravity which means that equally sized pieces of gold will be heavier than pyrite and chalcopyrite. In Rusher’s Gold, the kids find that the best gold samples are hidden in piles of useless pyrite. Do you think they will be able to tell the difference and help Mr. M rebuild his collection? Keep reading to find out!

Rusher’s Gold is available everywhere great books are sold. Find your favorite store here:

For fun insight into the Crystal Cave Adventures and to get a copy of the free prequel novella, Viktor’s Ice, join my book club today.

Please share:
This entry was posted in Crystal Cave Adventures, Geology, Rusher's Gold, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *