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Where to Find Opals in the USA — A List of American Opal Locations
在美國哪裡可以找到蛋白石 — 美國蛋白石產地列表
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American OpalsWhen early settlers migrated west to pan for gold in early American boomtowns, they may have also encountered another treasure hidden in the earth: opals! That’s right, if you thought opals were confined to the abundant deposits in Australia, think again.

While it’s true that Australia is the leading source for opals worldwide, followed by Ethiopia, the US has a humble but steady supply, too. The US supplies only a fraction compared to other sources like Australia, Ethiopia, Brazil, and Mexico, but the western canyons and valleys are lined with small opal mines. Today, many mines are still active while others have long since closed, but their treasures still sell in the market.

Here’s a quick overview of where to find American opals in the USA:

  • Nevada

  • Oregon

  • Arizona

  • Idaho

  • Utah

  • Washington

  • Arkansas

  • Louisiana

Before we dive into each of these states, let’s go over some of the opal varieties you’ll encounter in the US.

Types of Opals Found in the USA

American opals come from several states in western USA, where volcanic rocks in remote mountains and valleys along the Western Trail from California to Washington supply varieties like black opal, fire opal, common opal, and more.

However, Nevada is the leading American supplier for opals. On the whole, the United States produces around $90,000 of opal annually. 

Most of these opals are found in western USA, with many opal mines open to the public. Next, we’ll look at the mines dotting the Western regions of the US.

Nevada

Can you find black opal in the US? You bet! It’s clear that Nevada is the best place to find opal in the US, thanks to the world-famous Virgin Valley opal, a remote, fruitful mining district supplying some of the world’s finest black opals. 

In Northern Nevada nestled against the border of Oregon, a conglomeration of three high-producing Virgin Valley opal mines line the high desert valleys along the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge, including:

  • Royal Peacock opal mine

  • Virgin Opal Bonanza mine

  • Rainbow Ridge opal mine

Virgin Valley Opal

While Nevada tends to be associated with gambling and the famous Las Vegas strip, there’s much more to be discovered! The vast 68,000-acre valleys encompass the heart of the Old West and its rich prospecting history. The region teems with common opal, but a few small deposits supply precious black opal, known as some of the finest opals in the world.

Tourists can visit this opal mecca during the mining season, from May to November. If you’re wondering what makes Nevada’s opals so prestigious, it's their vivid array of colors. Additionally, the world’s largest precious opal was unearthed in the Royal Peacock Mine!

Despite Nevada’s surplus of common opal, most are unsuitable for gems due to their crazing and cracking. These fragile stones cannot be cut or polished. That said, they make for stunning display gems sold to museums and rock shops for collectors and home decor.

Since Nevada’s opal boom straddles the Oregon border, let’s look at “the beaver state” next.

BLUE OREGON OPAL BEAD 13.45 CTS [VS2162 ]Oregon

Opals hide in rhyolite geode mineraloids that form in low-temperature silicon dioxide cracks in the earth. Oregon has its very own variety of opals called “Thunderegg.” These opals are found in stunning geodes, rocks that look unassuming outside but explode with color and diversity within. 

In addition to thundereggs, Oregon supplies a variety of fire opals as well as common opals, rainbow opals, centra luz opals, blue opals, and dendritic opals.

Where can you find opals in Oregon? Counties across the state have small opal mines. The leading supplier of Oregon opals is the Juniper Ridge Opal mine, a “fee dig” site where visitors and miners can pay a fee, undergo training, and start mining! Any findings unearthed are yours to keep!

Another prominent locality is the Opal Butte mine in Morrow County that’s been active since 1988. Over in Klamath County, you’ll find Opal Creekand Klamath Falls, a small but active opal mine. 

agate opal

Arizona

Heading east from California, you’ll find a famous agate mine that’s known to unearth opals. Most notably are the Mule Mountains, home to the Opal Hill Mine in the Palo Verde region. The quantity of opals discovered here is unrecorded, but opals often surface while mining for desirable agates.

In southern Arizona are the Sky Opal mines in Santa Cruz County. Here, beautiful soft blue opals surface. Another popular mine is Burro Creek, a mineral-producing region in Wickenburg known to produce rockhound collectibles and American opals.

Idaho opalIdaho

Idaho is a world-renowned gem state thanks to its geologic diversity, attracting rockhounds near and far to collect across the rich lands. The state produces a vibrant portfolio of gems, from agate to diamonds, and of course, opals!. Idaho opals include:

  • Fire opal

  • Banded opal

  • Hyalite opal

  • Common opal

  • Opalized wood

Ancient volcanic rocks and geysers supply Idaho’s opals. Geysers would erupt throughout millions of years, surfacing silica spheres in the liquid lined with layers of precious opal. While the color bar is thin, these opals are most commonly used to make opal triplets.

Where do you find opals in Idaho? The most prominent regions include the Spencer Opal Mine, Willow Creek, Pahsimeroi Valley, Poison Creek, the Moscow Opal Mines, and Clover Creek.

Utah candy opal from USAUtah

Utah is a sprawling Mountain West state bordering Colorado, Wyoming, Idaho, Arizona, and Nevada. Because it’s nestled between three states producing American opals (Arizona, Nevada, and Idaho), it’s only fitting that Utah also has opals. However, these opals are an entity all their own, thanks to their unique banding. We can thank the geothermal activity underground for forming such a fantastic American opal variety!

Also called Bacon Opals, or Candy Strop Opals, Utah opals exhibit a unique striping akin to a strip of bacon meat. Warm hues of red, yellow, and green line these slabs and specimens. While Utah isn’t a leading supplier of opals, they spring up from regions across the state. 

However, the most notable locale is the Opal Gemstone Mine in Milford, a rockhounding site in the Antelope-Roosevelt Hot Springs Mining District treasured by collectors eager to see one of the most unique American opal varieties in the world.

The Mine has since closed, and production was small when it was active, but Utah opals still circulate throughout the opal market as a novelty.

Opalized wood opal

Washington

The northernmost western state of Washington abundantly produces gemstones like agates, carnelians, and bloodstones. However, you can also find American opals in Washington State! 

A treasure unique to Washington is opalized wood specimens. When wood buries into soil, mineralized water and low oxygen create a fascinating process called permineralization. Rather than decomposing, silica preserves the wood tissues, transforming them into opalized wood fossils.

Besides these remarkable treasures, you can also find common opal in Washington, although production levels are minimal, despite the demand and interest. 

Washington Opals are rare and elusive but can be found in the following regions:

  • Whelan — the first US location to unearth American opals!

  • The Yakima River in Sunnyside

  • Wind River in Skamania County

  • Greenwater River in King County

And that wraps up the western sources, but where else can we find opal in the US?

Where to find opals in the USA

Arkansas

Arkansas might not be the most prominent state to supply gemstones in the US, but it deserves mention on this list of American opal sites. In the late 19th century, people flocked to Arkansas to join the booming pearl rush. Over in Murfreesboro, Crater of Diamonds State Park supplies a respectable amount of diamonds. In addition to a variety of quartz species, Arkansas also has a small source of opals. 

Arkansas ranks third for gemstone production ($4.89 million) in the United States, and there are several regions to find opal, including the Potash Sulphur Springs in Garland County. Arkansas opal types include dendritic opal, precious fire opal, and throughout Eastern and Southern Arkansas, opalized wood is present in hyaline opal.

Sand opal

Louisiana

Are you wondering, can opal be found in Louisiana of all states? The answer is yes, and it’s called Louisiana Sand Opal. These rare opal types are a type of sandstone once mined in the Catahoula Formation in Leesville.

Louisiana Sand Opal forms when sand grains band together with clear opal. Once the specimen is exposed to sun rays, the mixed composition displays a radiant play of color in vivid speckles of purples, blues, and greens. The most desired Louisiana opals have a dark body tone to best exhibit the stone’s play of color. 

Louisiana opal mining is historically small in production, with prominence rising and dwindling in the 1980s-90s. This means that Louisiana opal is exceedingly rare and elusive. But there is another type of Louisiana opal that’s much more abundant: Louisiana Palm Wood. 

Like Washington’s opalized wood, Louisiana Palm Wood is a form of opalized fallen palm wood, which isn’t actually a true wood grain. Instead, palm wood is a fibrous material found in localized plants. As the palms deteriorated into underground water, silica grew and hardened into petrified palm opal. 

If you’re in the market for Louisiana opal, palm wood is your best bet!

Buy opals from USA

Are Opals Sold in the US? 

And that wraps up our tour of American opal found in the US! The United States may never contend with Australia for opal production, but as you can see, rare and novelty opal varieties exist from sea to shining sea. Of course, the American west is the most prominent region for American opals, but branch out east, and you’ll also find unique varieties. Are you ready to get your hands on a relic from the Old West? 

Find valuable and rare American opal from Opal Auctions!

美國蛋白石當早期的定居者向西遷移到美國早期的新興城市淘金時,他們可能還遇到了另一個隱藏在地球上的寶藏:蛋白石!沒錯,如果您認為蛋白石僅限於澳大利亞豐富的礦床,請再想一想。

雖然澳大利亞確實是全球蛋白石的主要來源,其次是埃塞俄比亞,但美國也有少量但穩定的供應。與澳大利亞、埃塞俄比亞、巴西和墨西哥等其他來源相比,美國僅提供一小部分,但西部峽谷和山谷兩旁都是小型蛋白石礦。今天,許多礦山仍然活躍,而其他礦山早已關閉,但它們的寶藏仍在市場上出售。

以下是在美國哪裡可以找到美國蛋白石的快速概覽:

  • 內華達

  • 俄勒岡州

  • 亞利桑那

  • 愛達荷州

  • 猶他州

  • 華盛頓

  • 阿肯色州

  • 路易斯安那州

在我們深入了解每個州之前,讓我們先回顧一下您在美國會遇到的一些蛋白石品種。

在美國發現的蛋白石類型

美國蛋白石來自美國西部的幾個州,從加利福尼亞到華盛頓的西部小徑沿線偏遠山脈和山谷中的火山岩供應各種品種,如黑蛋白石、火蛋白石、普通蛋白石等。

然而,內華達州是美國領先的蛋白石供應商。總體而言,美國每年生產約 90,000 美元的蛋白石。

這些蛋白石大部分產於美國西部,許多蛋白石礦向公眾開放。接下來,我們將看看散佈在美國西部地區的礦山。

內華達

你能在美國找到黑蛋白石嗎?你打賭!很明顯,內華達州是美國最好的蛋白石產地,這要歸功於舉世聞名的維爾京谷蛋白石,這是一個偏遠、富有成效的礦區,供應一些世界上最好的黑蛋白石。

在緊鄰俄勒岡州邊界的內華達州北部,三個高產的維爾京谷蛋白石礦位於謝爾頓國家野生動物保護區沿線的高沙漠山谷,包括:

  • 皇家孔雀蛋白石礦

  • 維珍蛋白石富礦礦

  • 彩虹嶺蛋白石礦

處女谷蛋白石

雖然內華達州往往與賭博和著名的拉斯維加斯大道聯繫在一起,但還有更多值得探索的地方!廣闊的 68,000 英畝山谷包含舊西部的中心及其豐富的勘探歷史。該地區盛產普通蛋白石,但也有一些小礦床供應珍貴的黑蛋白石,被譽為世界上最好的蛋白石之一。

遊客可以在 5 月至 11 月的採礦季節參觀這個蛋白石聖地。如果您想知道是什麼讓內華達州的蛋白石如此著名,那是因為它們鮮豔的顏色。此外,皇家孔雀礦出土了世界上最大的珍貴蛋白石!

儘管內華達州的普通蛋白石過剩,但由於它們的龜裂和開裂,大多數都不適合寶石。這些易碎的石頭無法切割或拋光。也就是說,它們製作出令人驚嘆的展示寶石,出售給博物館和搖滾商店,供收藏家和家居裝飾使用。

由於內華達州的蛋白石熱潮橫跨俄勒岡州邊界,接下來讓我們看看“海狸州”。

藍色俄勒岡蛋白石珠 13.45 CTS [VS2162]俄勒岡州

蛋白石隱藏在流紋岩大地礦物中,這些礦物形成於地球的低溫二氧化矽裂縫中。俄勒岡州有自己的各種蛋白石,稱為“Thunderegg”。這些蛋白石存在於令人驚嘆的晶洞中,這些岩石在外面看起來不起眼,但內部卻充滿了色彩和多樣性。

除了雷蛋,俄勒岡州還提供各種火蛋白石以及普通蛋白石、彩虹蛋白石、centra luz 蛋白石、藍蛋白石和樹枝狀蛋白石。

在俄勒岡州哪裡可以找到蛋白石?全州各縣都有小型蛋白石礦。俄勒岡蛋白石的主要供應商是杜松嶺蛋白石礦,這是一個“收費挖掘”站點,遊客和礦工可以在這裡支付費用、接受培訓並開始開採!任何出土的發現都歸您所有!

另一個著名的地點是莫羅縣的 Opal Butte 礦,自 1988 年以來一直活躍。在克拉馬斯縣,您會發現 Opal Creekand Klamath Falls,這是一個小而活躍的蛋白石礦。

瑪瑙蛋白石

亞利桑那

從加利福尼亞向東行駛,您會發現一個著名的瑪瑙礦,該礦以出土蛋白石而聞名。最著名的是騾山,帕洛佛得地區的蛋白石山礦的所在地。此處發現的蛋白石數量沒有記錄,但蛋白石經常在開採所需的瑪瑙時浮出水面。

在亞利桑那州南部是聖克魯斯縣的天空蛋白石礦。在這裡,美麗柔軟的藍色蛋白石表面。另一個受歡迎的礦山是 Burro Creek,這是威肯堡的一個礦物產區,以生產獵犬收藏品和美國蛋白石而聞名。

愛達荷蛋白石愛達荷州

由於其地質多樣性,愛達荷州是世界知名的寶石之州,吸引著遠近的岩石獵犬在這片肥沃的土地上採集。該州生產充滿活力的寶石組合,從瑪瑙到鑽石,當然還有蛋白石! 愛達荷蛋白石包括:

  • 火蛋白石

  • 帶狀蛋白石

  • 透明蛋白石

  • 普通蛋白石

  • 蛋白石木

古老的火山岩和間歇泉供應愛達荷州的蛋白石。數百萬年間,間歇泉會不斷噴發,在液體中浮現出二氧化矽球體,內襯著一層層珍貴的蛋白石。雖然顏色條很薄,但這些蛋白石最常用於製作蛋白石三胞胎。

您在哪裡可以找到愛達荷州的蛋白石?最著名的地區包括斯賓塞歐泊礦、柳溪、帕西梅羅伊谷、毒溪、莫斯科歐泊礦和三葉草溪。

來自美國的猶他州糖果蛋白石猶他州

猶他州是一個廣闊的西部山區,與科羅拉多州、懷俄明州、愛達荷州、亞利桑那州和內華達州接壤。因為它坐落在生產美國蛋白石的三個州(亞利桑那州、內華達州和愛達荷州)之間,所以猶他州也有蛋白石是很合適的。然而,由於其獨特的條帶,這些蛋白石本身就是一個實體。我們要感謝地下的地熱活動形成瞭如此出色的美國蛋白石品種!

猶他州蛋白石也稱為培根蛋白石或糖果蛋白石,呈現出類似於培根肉條的獨特條紋。紅色、黃色和綠色的暖色調襯托著這些石板和標本。雖然猶他州不是蛋白石的主要供應商,但它們來自全州各地。

然而,最著名的地方是米爾福德的蛋白石寶石礦,這是羚羊 - 羅斯福溫泉礦區的一個岩石獵場,被渴望看到世界上最獨特的美國蛋白石品種之一的收藏家珍視。

該礦已經關閉,活躍時產量很小,但猶他州蛋白石仍然作為一種新產品在整個蛋白石市場流通。

蛋白石木蛋白石

華盛頓

最北端的華盛頓州盛產瑪瑙、紅玉髓和血石等寶石。但是,您也可以在華盛頓州找到美國蛋白石!

華盛頓獨有的寶藏是蛋白石木材標本。當木材埋入土壤中時,礦化水和低氧會產生一個迷人的過程,稱為透礦化。二氧化矽不會分解,而是保存木組織,將它們轉化為蛋白石化的木化石。

除了這些非凡的寶藏之外,您還可以在華盛頓找到普通的蛋白石,儘管需求和興趣很少,但產量很少。

華盛頓蛋白石罕見且難以捉摸,但可以在以下地區找到:

  • 惠蘭——美國第一個發現美國蛋白石的地方!

  • 桑尼賽德的亞基馬河

  • 斯卡馬尼亞縣的風河

  • 金縣的綠水河

這結束了西方的來源,但我們還能在美國哪裡找到蛋白石?

在美國哪裡可以找到蛋白石

阿肯色州

阿肯色州可能不是美國最著名的寶石供應州,但在這份美國蛋白石產地名單中值得一提。 19 世紀後期,人們湧向阿肯色州,加入蓬勃發展的珍珠熱潮。在默弗里斯伯勒,鑽石火山口州立公園提供了數量可觀的鑽石。除了各種石英種類外,阿肯色州還有少量蛋白石來源。

阿肯色州的寶石產量(489 萬美元)在美國排名第三,有幾個地區可以找到蛋白石,包括加蘭縣的鉀硫磺泉。阿肯色州的蛋白石類型包括樹枝狀蛋白石、珍貴的火蛋白石,在整個阿肯色州東部和南部,透明蛋白石中都存在蛋白石木材。

沙蛋白石

路易斯安那州

您想知道,在所有州的路易斯安那州都能找到蛋白石嗎?答案是肯定的,它被稱為路易斯安那州沙蛋白石。這些罕見的蛋白石類型是一種曾在 Leesville 的 Catahoula 地層開采的砂岩。

當沙粒與透明蛋白石結合在一起時,路易斯安那州沙蛋白石就形成了。一旦標本暴露在陽光下,混合的組合物就會在紫色、藍色和綠色的生動斑點中顯示出一種光芒四射的色彩。最受歡迎的路易斯安那蛋白石具有深色體色調,以最好地展示寶石的色彩。

路易斯安那州蛋白石採礦業歷來產量較小,在 1980 年代至 90 年代期間產量上升和下降。這意味著路易斯安那州蛋白石極為罕見且難以捉摸。但是還有另一種類型的路易斯安那蛋白石更為豐富:路易斯安那棕櫚木。

與華盛頓的乳白化木材一樣,路易斯安那州棕櫚木是一種乳白色落下的棕櫚木,實際上並不是真正的木紋。相反,棕櫚木是一種在本地植物中發現的纖維材料。隨著棕櫚樹退化成地下水,二氧化矽生長並硬化成石化棕櫚蛋白石。

如果您在路易斯安那州蛋白石市場,棕櫚木是您最好的選擇!

從美國購買蛋白石

蛋白石在美國有賣嗎?

我們在美國發現的美國蛋白石之旅到此結束!美國可能永遠不會在蛋白石生產方面與澳大利亞抗衡,但正如您所看到的,從大海到閃耀的大海,都存在稀有和新穎的蛋白石品種。當然,美國西部是美國蛋白石最突出的地區,但向東延伸,您還會發現獨特的品種。你準備好接觸舊西部的遺跡了嗎?

從 Opal Auctions尋找珍貴稀有的美國蛋白石!

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A-Z Of Opals

A-Z Of Opals

A complete list of your favourite Opal from all over the world
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Did you know?

Did you know?

Check out our fascinating information and articles on all things amazing in the Opal world
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How To's

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All of your favourite Opal How To's
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News

News

What's trending in the Opal Industry
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Opal Auctions  Verified Sellers

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Opal Auctions sellers who are approved as opal Verified Sellers
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Opal Information

Opal Information

Information about Opal and its colorful history
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Opal Stories

Opal Stories

Feel like reading a yarn or two?
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Technical Opal Information

Technical Opal Information

All there is to know about Opals including Black Opals, Ethiopian Opals & Boulder Opal
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Testimonials

Testimonials

Feedback from our VIP customers
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