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2015 Glass Buttes Knap-in  Report

Well, the 2015 Glass Buttes Knap-in had a little of just about everything - snow and 75temperatures, noobies and knappers who've been at the 'Buttes forever.  In addition to the new knappers, there were several knappers from outside the Pacific Northwest including the legendary Tom 'PebblePimp' Dodge from Arizona and Mark Burdett from Utah.  

There was also a bit of the 'bug' going around but most toughed it out (probably shouldn't have!).

 Collecting Obsidian was the main reason, after knapping/socializing, for most of the knappers who attended and there was plenty of the 'known' obsidian such as Midnight Lace, Silversheen, and Rainbow, as well as relatively 'new' discoveries such as Leopard Skin and Peach.  There was even some success finding the Fire Obsidian but I didn't and couldn't tell you where the others did .  As always everyone was made aware of the BLM's 250 pound/per person/per year allowance for the Glass Buttes area and everyone this knapper saw adhered to the limit. The limit outside of the 'Buttes is 250 pounds per person per day, which makes a trip to the Dacite/Black Butter quarries worth the 100 mile round trip.

Turnout at this year's Knap-in was pretty good considering the weather. You wouldn't know it by some of the photos - but then again with so much rock to collect..............

There was a little excitement on Thursday as 82 year old Bob Popp, one of the best loved icons of Glass Buttes, had a close call with what ended up being just a case of fainting/vertigo.  Still the rapid response of his friends and fellow knappers helped to keep Bob warm and comfortable until the outstanding EMS crew from Burns, OR arrived (over 50 miles).  They took Bob to Bend, OR (80 miles) for further tests and he was released early the next morning (1:00 am).   Rocky Male, this year's host, drove all the way to Bend to pick up Bob and bring him back by 3:00am - way to go ROCKY!  

Another aspect of the Glass Buttes knap-in that makes it such a great event is the opportunity for new knappers to learn from some of the best - and for free!  Joe Higgins, Stu Murdock, Sam Black, and several other great knappers spend hours teaching the noobies how to pressure flake, percussion flake and notch arrowheads, blades and spear points.  The 'noobies' included at least three young women (20 somethings), one even younger lady and a half dozen men from 12 to 60!

One of the truly outstanding highlights of this year's knap-in was the participation by PSK member Nicholas Tomihama, the guy who literally wrote the book (actually several books) on making Archery Bows from PVC pipe.  Nicholas gave free demonstrations on how to make a bow from PVC pipe each of three nights, completing at least four bows!  And he did it by heating the PVC pipe over the community fire!  What a treat!   Nicholas also presented Council of Elder members Joe Higgins and Stu Murdock with their very own PVC pipe bows!   More than a few knappers went home planning to make their own PVC pipe bows!    Video to follow!

More later and photos too!  In the meantime for those with a Facebook account (I'm not one) go here for a photo essay of the 2015 Glass Buttes Knap-in: https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100009430412777


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Diehard PSK Knapper at the Gass Buttes Knap-in

'Noobie' Noah showing his first point, Jim Keffer instructor (don't you just hate it when your student is better than you after just one lesson!)

'Noobie' Noah showing his first point with Father and Sister

Master Knapper Joe Higgins and Noobie Richard evaluating Richard's first complete bi-face

Background - Stu Murdock (hat) andhost Rocky Male

What 250 pounds looks like


The ones that got away!

Black Butter Pebble - Outside the Glass Buttes area

Co-Host Skyler Male sitting on Black Butter Pebble

Nicholas Tomihama sitting on Black Butter Pebble

These weren't so lucky!

'A' Team (left to right) Woody Woodside, Joe Higgins, Dave Tiller, Skyler Male, Bob Bower, Dave Walton, Eli Walton. Photographer Jim Keffer

Donn Paris explaining the finer points of evaluating obsidian to Jermy VanCobb

A couple of scenic photos taken from the Black Butter Quarry - Oregon Cinder Cone (same cone - different zoom)


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