Expedition Journal

Uruguay Rocked by Explosions

On April 6, 2008, at 10:03 pm local time, a massive fireball appeared in the skies over Uruguay. Large explosions were witnessed by thousands of people in Uruguay, including up to the Argentinian border. Buildings were purportedly shattered by the shockwave along the flight path.

The Hunt Begins

Soon there were reports of stones being found at a commercial nursery, and at least one stone had punctured a greenhouse and had been recovered. Mike Farmer, Greg Hupe, and I quickly mounted an expedition to the fall site. Our first stop was the commercial nursery, where newspapers had reported that a stone had been recovered. The owner of the nursery was happy to show us the stone and walk us through the events following the fireball.

I soon began scouting for hunting areas and made my first find quite some distance away on the small end of the strewnfield, a 1.46-gram complete stone. Much of the strewnfield was jungle or overgrown fields entangled with brush. The hazards of working in these areas included poisonous snakes, deadly spiders, and machete-wielding locals, the latter of which I soon encountered. Forgetting all about the snakes and spiders, I tore through the tangled brush of a field to get into the jungle where I could not be found.

Wrapping up in Uruguay

We were soon joined by our Uruguayan colleagues, led by my friend Hans Koser. He introduced us to some very interesting local cuisine, an Argentinian barbecue consisting of various pipes and organs from goats (should have brought my Tabasco sauce for that one). Everybody made great discoveries, but after many days of hunting, landowners began to tire of all the commotion. We were asked politely to move on and do some “tourist things.”

The Berduc expedition was quite an experience, and I have no doubt that with a little more time I could have produced some major discoveries in such a condensed strewnfield.


Meteorite Details

Name: Berduc
Location: Colonia Berduc, Argentina
Classification: L6
Witnessed: Yes
Fell: April 7, 2008
TKW: ~10 kg

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