Nyssa’s annual festival celebrates hidden hillside treasures

William Nance, a rock hound tour guide for Nyssa's Thunderegg Days Festival, points out an interesting feature of a rock Saturday to a tour participant. (The Enterprise/Isabella Garcia).

NYSSA — It’s early on a Friday morning, but it’s already pushing 70 degrees as a small group of eight walk through the brush on a hillside, their eyes focused on the ground.

While some people move slow and squint at the ground, one of them reaches for rocks with the confidence of a pelican dive bombing a fish. 

That’s William Nance, the director of anthropology at the College of Idaho and the leader of this rockhound expedition.

A member of the group brings an angled rock with flecks of agate on the surface over to Nance.

“What about this . . .