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.


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.


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


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


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 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


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!




  • 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




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。





  • 皇家孔雀蛋白石礦

  • 維珍蛋白石富礦礦

  • 彩虹嶺蛋白石礦


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!



藍色俄勒岡蛋白石珠 13.45 CTS [VS2162]俄勒岡州


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。


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。




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。


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






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。








  • 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




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。



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。


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。






從 Opal Auctions尋找珍貴稀有的美國蛋白石!

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