So you've been thinking of taking up a new hobby. How about rock collecting - a hobby that is not only loads of fun, but has other benefits too?
Rockhounding, or amateur geology, is the recreational study and collection of rocks, gems, minerals, or fossils from their natural environments. Rockhounds are the people who cannot pass by a pretty rock without picking it up for a closer look.
So why do it?
- No experience needed! Rockhounding can be as simple as going down to the nearest creek or roadcut, and finding pretty stones that suit your fancy.
- It's cheap. Or rather, it can be as cheap or as expensive as you want to make it. Some rockhounds travel the world to collect stones in exotic locales, while others never go further than ten miles from home.
- If you have children, rockhounding is a great way to get them interested in geology and the outdoors. Kids seem to have a natural love for this hobby [why not, it's just like treasure hunting, after all!]
- It's a great excuse to get out in the fresh air and sunlight, and get some exercise. Hauling sacks of heavy rocks is a great workout.
- If you join a local gem club, it's a good way to make friends and connect with the community. Rockhound circles tend to be both close-knit and welcoming.
- When you're tired of the awesome stones you've collected, or when you need to make room for new ones, you can sell your spares to other collectors, and earn a bit of spare cash.