In our constant effort to escape the heat on our days off, Tom and I headed up to Cedar Breaks National Monument. On the way we stopped at Orderville Mine Rock Shop, located in Orderville, Utah. Tom likes to look at rocks, minerals, and fossils and Orderville has a couple of rock shops.
Orderville is located halfway between Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks. There are a few tourist-type businesses and about 600 people. The Orderville Mine Rock Shop looks like the biggest business in town.
When we got out of the truck I snapped a couple of pictures of the great rock and mineral displays in front of the shop. Then we were greeted by a young man named Bradley who asked us if we wanted to see his store. We said yes, thinking he meant the rock shop. But he directed us to a picnic table with a selection of petrified wood, fossils and small rocks. The sign on the picnic table said “Bradley’s Store.” Bradley explained that he was 10 and his grandparents owned the store. Then he gave us a rundown of the types of rocks and minerals in his store. He was adorable and very knowledgeable.
After looking at Bradley’s stock, we walked around the displays outside and then headed into the Orderville Mine Rock Shop. There were wonderful displays with lots of rocks, minerals, and fossils. Most of the items were from Utah, but there were minerals from all over the world. Bradley joined us and told us about some of the fossils on display. Tom and Bradley agreed that one of them, priced at $4,000, probably belonged in a museum. But Utah seems to have plenty of fossils – more than are needed for museums.
Tom bought a Trilobite fossil from inside the store and I bought a small piece of petrified wood from Bradley’s store. Bradley encouraged me to buy some more because it was 7 items for $5 or $1 apiece. So 7 was “quite a savings” and he had a place to put my one item while I looked for others. Despite his salesmanship, I stuck to my one piece of wood.
The Orderville Mine Rock Shop is for sale. The owners are retiring soon. You can read about the business here, if you are interested in owning a rock shop in Utah. Too bad Bradley isn’t old enough to take over the business!