Following the Boulder Train: Travels with Prospectors and Rock Doctors


192 pages
Contains Index
ISBN 1-55017-377-4
DDC 622.092'2711






Reviewed by Ann Turner

Ann Turner, formerly the financial and budget manager of the University
of British Columbia Library, is a freelance writer.


A boulder train is the trail of rocky debris deposited by a melting
glacier as it recedes. Prospectors and exploration geologists track them
like animal spoor, looking for signs of valuable mineral deposits. For
award-winning author Tom Henry this also an apt description of his
methodology in researching this intriguing study of mineral exploration
in B.C. Mining is the province’s third-largest industry, and the
search for and extraction of minerals such as gold and coal were
responsible for much of its early development. Henry was curious about
the current state of exploration and the people who do it. He chose a
hands-on approach to the research, shadowing geologists as they went
about their work, staying in remote camps with them, hobnobbing with
their cronies, and even taking a prospecting course himself at the
British Columbia Institute of Technology field school in the Okanagan.
Always an articulate and entertaining writer, he gives his readers a
wonderful sense of the day-to-day life of the people involved in mineral
exploration, the drudgery and hard work, the remoteness and dangers of
their work sites, and the inextinguishable hope of the big find that
keeps them at it for a lifetime.


Henry, Tom., “Following the Boulder Train: Travels with Prospectors and Rock Doctors,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 19, 2024,