Nevada Meteorite Picture of the Month
(for the Month of December 2011)

Discover the Solar System - right here in the Nevada desert! Every month a different image or photograph of a NEVADA meteorite will be featured, along with a brief explanation written by a meteorite-recovery expert.

This is an UPDATE to this, as well as, to NEXT month's "Picture of the Month"! John Harrison has sent me a letter that explains how Nola's first find at this locality actually preceeds his first find (by a few minutes) and is now considered the "discovery stone". You can read his letter BELOW.

Images taken November 28, 2011:
See Explanation.
See Explanation. See Explanation.
Update: John's friend, Nola, found four more fragments on 2011/12/11 - !!!!
See Explanation.

Name of Nevada Meteorite: Very recent COLD find! Meaning, this is a new Nevada meteorite! The proposed provisional-name is still awaiting approval; also the classification is still pending, as well.
Images by finder of this meteorite (*pictured above).
Credit: All images were taken by the finder, John Harrison.
Please request permission from the finder before using his images.


This find was made by John Harrison of Idaho on 2011 November 28th (just days ago), so there is very little that can be said about this 233 gram chondritic stone. Actually, John made 3 finds that day, but all 3 fragments were able to be physically-paired, meaning that John was able to piece them together to form a "puzzle meteorite". This was John's first find made at this locality, but Nola made a find here, as well (read story BELOW). [corrected text] This is not John's first find, but that meteorite is another story, and I don't want to "steal John's thunder".
It is my contention (based on very limited observations) that this meteorite is probably an equilibrated L-chondrite.

Obviously, there is much more that needs to be determined about these finds, such as, do these fragments represent a strewn-field? Or was there a single stone that fragmented upon contact with the ground (and then were subsequently transported to their eventual find location)? Hopefully all of these questions will be able to be answered in the future, but in the meanwhile, this locality will continue to undergo an intensive and extensive search.

For Reference:
I've had to revise the above information, based upon this message that I received later in the month (January):

"The slightly revised story of our new meteorite find" [redacted title]

Dated: Thursday, January 19, 2012 3:35 PM
From:  "John Harrison" 
To:       "Robert Verish" 

Hi Bob

 I told you yesterday there have been some interesting developments on the [redacted] find.  
As you know on November 28 2011 I was fortunate enough to find the  233 gram Puzzle-piece stone. 
At the time of my discovery the first thing I did was call Nola on the radio and tell her about my new find. 
As I told her about the find she  was very excited and said “Cool, I will get Carol and head over to you”. 
She also said “I think I found one too” not giving her statement much thought I took off my  back pack and 
detached my GPS from the back pack and placed it directly over the new find and I pressed the mark waypoint 
button on my Garmin; it was exactly  12:01 PM

It took Nola and Carol a few minutes to get to me. Upon arrival one of the first things Nola said to me was 
“Look at this” and she showed me a square rock that was  attracted to her magnet. This rock greatly resembled 
these rail road rocks that we find where we park the truck that are magnetic. Selfishly, I gave this rock very little  
attention and replied “that’s one of those Rail Road rocks” and I gave her the rock back; Nola as a beginner to 
meteorite hunting totally relied on my word and we  went back on focusing on my stone taking in situ pictures and so on. 
And with in 45 minutes I was able to locate the two other pieces and make the three pieces fit  together making the 
"puzzle piece". Obviously I was on cloud nine and the whole day was about by MY new find. We continued hunting hard 
till dark and headed back  to Twin Falls.

Obviously on Monday I sent pictures, emails and made phone calls to all my meteorite hunting friends about 
my new and coolest find ever. The responses were  amazing. And to say the least I was very proud of my new find.

Later that week I got a call from Nola inviting me to her home for dinner, as a frequent dinner guest I ask her 
what I should bring. She said just bring your meteorite I  want to check that thing out again. So I packed up 
my meteorite and headed over to her house. As I mentioned before I am a frequent visitor to her home so 
I always  help with dinner preparations. I noticed on the counter she had a fairly large pile of meteor wrongs 
and unique (pretty) rocks. One of the rocks caught my eye so I  picked it up and inspected it and said, 
"Nola, this is a meteorite!" She immediately stopped whatever she was doing and rather snippily said 
“You said that was one of  the rail road rocks!”  I replied, "No, this is a meteorite, I guarantee it!  
And I asked her where she found it. She grabbed her GPS and showed me way point #3 where she had 
documented this find. It was about ½ of a mile away from where I had found my three puzzle piece fragments. 
And she documented her find at 11:57 AM,  if you  remember I documented my find at 12:01 PM (4 minutes apart)!  
I then congratulated her and said you are the original finder of this meteorite and you have made your  first cold find. 

Needless to say, Nola was more than excited.  

With her new find and location we immediately planned another trip, and on December 11th 2011 we headed-back 
to Nevada. This time we knew exactly the area we need to look. We got on our quads and headed right to 
waypoint #3 and after a few minutes of  searching I get a call from Nola on the radio. “John I can’t keep this from you 
any longer, get over here!”  As I approached her I could see a huge grin on her face. “Oh  my gosh”she said! 
“You are not going to believe this John.”  I got off my quad and she proudly gave me the tour of her finds; 
5 fragments in a 20’ radius with the  biggest being 358 grams. Together they all weighed 598 grams. At that point 
we took several pictures and had a blast documenting all the finds. I must admit I was very happy for her. 
I had felt extremely bad about not identifying her find two weeks earlier, but today was Nola’s day and it made me 
feel good!  Later that day we  found 4 more fragments, one of which I am fairly certain is NOT paired as it is 
quite a bit more weathered and I located it at a unrelated part of the lakebed.

To date we have recovered a just over a kilo of fragments from this Nevada lake bed and the good news is 
with all the finds we have found, it has been determined  that this was a fairly large chondrite and we have only 
recovered a small portion of it. 
I look forward to future trips with Nola and Carol as soon as the spring weather gets here.

Samples of these meteorites have been sent to Dr Tony Irving at the University Washington for classification. 
And as another surprise Dr. Irving has invited us all to  the University to witness in person the classification 
of our meteorites and show us how process works using the electron micro probe. Also giving us a tour of the  
Universities collection. This is all supposed to take place in the next few weeks. 
Nola, and her friend Carol and myself, can’t wait.

Update: Talked with Dr. Irving today, his initial assessment of both meteorites is...

Nola’s (and mine) puzzle stone:        L5 W1 S[low] and it has visible chondrules

My weathered stone:                    L6 W3 S2 

This was not with the micro-probe, but just with a microscope (we will do the micro-probe in a few weeks).

John Harrison 
------------------- End of John's letter -------------------

Addendum note:  Dr. Irving completed his characterization of these two meteorites, and the results are 
very close to the predications made only by the optical microscope:

Mass	Pieces	Class	Shock	Weathering grade	Fa	Fs	Wo	   
983	13	L5	S2	W1	24.9-25.1	20.3-20.9	1.0-1.7	   
18	1	L6	S2	W2	24.7-26.7	21.2-22.3	1.4-1.6	 

Congratulations to Nola, and a huge "Thank you" to John for his clarification letter. You are a true gentleman.

For Reference:
To Report a New Nevada Meteorite - Contact the Editor of the Bulletin, Laurence Garvie at
lgarvie at
Or use Met. Soc. NomComm web form

Got images?:
Would you like to see your image displayed here? Feel free to submit your image to my email address below. Any and all submissions of Nevada meteorite images are welcome.

The previous Picture of the "Day" is HERE !

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Authors & editors: Robert Verish (Meteorite-Recovery Lab)