Mount Apatite Park is owned and administered by the City of Auburn. It is open to the public, and no special permission to visit is required. Abandoned quarries within the park are located on the southeast side of Mt. Apatite, north of Route 11/121, between Hatch Road and Garfield Road. Another group of quarries (Pulsifer, etc.) are located on the west side of Mt. Apatite, but these are not open to the general public. From junction of Routes 4/100/202 and 11/121 in Auburn, drive west on Rte. 11/121 for 1.9 miles. Turn right onto Garfield Road and go northwest for 0.50 mile. Turn left onto Stevens Mill Road. Go to end of this road, pass National Guard armory, and continue on dirt road across large open field.
The quarry pits have steep rock walls, and some of them are flooded. Caution is necessary in exploring these areas. The big piles of waste rock (dumps) next to the quarries are good places to find mineral specimens, but be careful not to roll rocks downhill if people are below you. The remainder of the park is generally wooded and has a well-developed trail network.
Ample parking for cars or buses is available along park access road. Park next to road, preferably in or near the woods at the base of the hill (road is gated beyond this point). Check at National Guard armory if in doubt about where to park buses, since the large field is armory property. There are no toilet facilities at the quarries.
The Mt. Apatite quarries were important producers of commercial feldspar in the early 1900's. They played a prominent part in Maine's mining history. During the course of this mining activity, rare minerals and colorful crystals of green and pink tourmaline were found in both the Greenlaw and Maine Feldspar Quarries. These quarries also produced many large crystals of transparent smoky quartz. The complexity of the mineral assemblage at Mt. Apatite is matched by only a few other localities in Maine.
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