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The US Border Patrol Does Their Job at Potrillo Maar, New Mexico


I crawled under a rickety 3-strand barbed-wire fence to look for olivine nodules just a couple hundred feet into Mexico. Fifteen minutes later there is a big black helicopter circling overhead. Uh Oh! I give the chopper pilot a friendly wave and hustle back under the fence while the chopper comes down to land. A couple minutes later I am explaining to the gun-toting border patrol agent that I am just a rockhound searching for olivine. The officer took a look in the back of my truck, saw my rockhounding tools and camping gear and decided to let me go on my way. I walked to the top of a little hill to watch the helicopter take off (above) and snap this picture. After the border patrol left I started back to my truck. It was then that I noticed some strange little finger-shaped objects lying on the ground. At first I thought they were bone, or maybe fossil root sections, but this was on top of loose volcanic ash. I didn't expect any fossils there. I picked up a couple sections and studied them more carefull. Eureka; I had found by first fulgurites.