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Old 09-15-2007, 10:55 PM   #1
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Quartz Crystal & Diamond digging in Arkansas

Before we moved to Colorado, Nancy and I went to Ron Coleman Crystal Mines, north of Hot Springs Village on Highway 7 North every couple of months for a weekend. About 14 miles north of Hot Springs and just south of a small town of Blue Springs. There is a billboard sign on the west side of the road that shows a cluster of quartz crystals at your turn. You will drive on asphalt road for about 4 miles west and the mine road is on the north, also asphalt. Everyone can direct you to the open pit mine if you get lost. The RV Park is on your right as you near the mine entrance. Find a spot to set up camp during the day or the middle of the night and register up on the "hill" at the big building.

To dig all day, $20.00 for adults. Use garden tools and a shovel. I like the three or four pronged hand tool. The mine will bring a dump truck or two of red "grit" that has small crystals and some the size of big cucumbers. We like the clear crystals, but there are plenty for everyone. Even if you are dressed in a suit, you will find crystals. If it is raining... you will find even more as they wash out of the dirt. Plan on getting dirty... red. The broken edges of the crystals can be sharp, so wear gloves when you are digging and keep some water in the bucket to clean them off. Clean them to toss out the culls. You will have to carry the bucket(s) of crystals about a 1000 feet to your parked vehicle.

There is a RV park with power and water and 24 pads. There is a men's and women's showers, laundry and use to be a restaurant at the mine office and display building. I cannot remember the cost for the RV pad, but it was under $15.00. The restrooms had been needing some upkeep when we were last there in 2004. You can call 800-291-4484 for more information.

The first time we visited the open pit mine and dug crystals out of the tailing piles we dreamed all night about crystals. You will find out for yourself. It was inexpensive and you will find more than you can carry and be exhausted at the end of the day. Expect to begin digging an hour after sunrise and up a an hour or two before sunset and they will announce when it is time for you to lug your treasure to the parking lot.

You can go to Murfreesboro, Arkansas to the Diamond State Park (cannot remember name). Cost is around $5.00, you can rent a bucket and digging tools, or bring your own. People find diamonds in this huge plowed hillside about three football fields or so in size. Probably easily found by Google: Diamonds, Murfreesboro, Arkansas. There is camping in the area, but it has been too many years to remember any details. We did not find any diamonds, but others did while we were scouting. A pouring rain is also a good time to be out looking. The museum has a nice display of diamonds found there and the park rangers will check any stones you find. Prepare to get dirty and toss the clothes into a plastic bag...
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Old 09-15-2007, 11:09 PM   #2
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Rivet Digging at Coleman's

The quality of the red clay is understated. All of your clothing, including shoes should be disposable. It will not wash out! Given that, the Coleman mine in Hot Springs Village is noted for the clarity of the crystals and the number of ghosts or phantoms that you find. The last time I was there a couple from Florida was next to me. They brought their SOB trailer and camped every year. The previous year, the wife found a perfectly clear 27-pound single crystal. I have yet to rival that, but have found some very nice stuff there.
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Old 09-16-2007, 12:20 AM   #3
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The State Park at Murfreesboro is called Crater of Diamond State Park. We visited there last year during our cross country maiden voyage and had a great time there. Although I didn't have any luck in finding any diamond, but the experience is one that I'll never forget.

The State park has woodsy full hookup campground and is only $15/night with lots of room and privacy between sites. There is a beautiful trail you can walk to the river. The crater is open at 8am and you can dig all day for $7.

I have yet to visit any crystal mine there, but it's definitely on the list. I am also intrigued and would love to visit Sheffield Mine for emeralds in Franklin, North Carolina. Has anyone been to Franklin? Is there any RV park at any of the mines?

Ray, thank you for sharing the experience.

cheers,
Cat
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Old 09-29-2009, 08:21 PM   #4
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When I reviewed the Crator of diamonds, I found that to get those diamonds you almost have to do a gold panning type deal. There apparently is a fellow out there that lives there and he's featured on you tube. We reside here in Altus Okla. and about fifteen miles north of us are the Quartz Mountains State Park area. Pink granite everywhere...these mountains are 'platonic' literally going back as volcanos before Bibical Noah's Flood they say. This is a place where they have found giant foot ball sized crystals (tagged Scotch topaz). The mountains are so old that the crystal formations have 'fallen' off and landed in the ground. There is also 'Old Baldy' That climbers come from all over the world to scale it (I sure wouldn't!)...and about five miles east of the park is 'Devils Canyon' where about two thousand indians used to live up against the Red River that snakes thru there, and lived in Domed grass huts. A very interesting place. A very old place. A very beautiful place.
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Old 07-10-2010, 02:40 PM   #5
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Arkansas Crystal Mine digging

Just so you can call in advance to Coleman's Crystal Mines and Rock Yard near Jessieville, I found a business card and additional information, although it is about ten years old.

"15 miles from Hot Springs on Highway 7 North"

5837 North Highway 7, Jessieville, Arkansas 71949

501-984-5328

If you have kids of "digging age", it will be an experience not forgotten! It also keeps us "old kids" young as well!
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Old 07-10-2010, 09:02 PM   #6
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Here's a small version of those ancient crystals...as you can see it is coated in an iron type of covering. But inside it is smoky. I had heard they - or this type of quartz is called 'scotch topaz'....These mountains over here are so old that the granite wore away in time and the crystal formations just simply fell off.
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