Tourists stumble upon monstrous Yooperlite

The secret nightlife of hunting for Yooperlites is more complicated than most know.
This is a recording of the TV6 Early News.
Published: Sep. 28, 2021 at 7:58 PM EDT
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COPPER HARBOR, Mich. (WLUC) - Tourists in Copper Harbor have crossed paths with what may be the largest Yooperlite rock on record.

Three travellers from Eau Claire, WI say they were looking for Yooperlites along the waterfront on a rocky beach.

“If you shine your light actually in the water while the waves are coming in you can actually see them tumble to shore,” said Yooperlite Hunter Kateri Miller. “Because the beaches are pretty well picked over.”

Florescent sodalite in and on rocks illuminates under UV light. The DNR says Yooperlites can often be found on the lakeshores as Miller explained.

However, the rocks don’t always make it to shore.

“I hear Kat go, ‘Oh Al!’,” said Alex Mills, Kateri’s partner and fellow Yooperlite hunter. “I turn towards her, and I was literally standing right next to the rock.”

A Yooperlite rock that Mills and Miller say must have been at least 500-800 lbs.

The crew says they were shocked to see how large the rock was after clearing the area around it. Though, they weren’t able to see the whole thing because it was too large to overturn.

“The rarity and the scarcity, and then the nature of the hunt. It has to be dark out, and you have to have the special light,” said Miller. “It’s a different experience looking for Yooperlite than hunting for an agate.”

The DNR reminds all that Yooperlite hunting can be fun. However, it says there is a 25 lb limit on collecting materials per person, per year in Michigan.

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