Digging for Quartz Crystals in Arkansas
Mining for Crystals was a Great Holiday!
Digging (or mining) for crystals was a favorite holiday of mine growing up. I lived on a small farm in Missouri near the boarder with Arkansas. If we had a long weekend or were just in need of a break we would holiday in Arkansas. Arkansas really is a fantastic place to holiday, it is a bit of a secret treasure in terms of holiday-ing.
As you may be able to guess Arkansas has many lovely hot springs, hence the name of their most well known city 'Hot Springs'. Odd coincidence that! Well if you know about geology and the history of the planet then you know that hot springs often indicate an area that is or was recently geologically speaking very active.
The hot springs are just one byproduct of geothermal activity. Geothermal activity has another byproduct, and that is the formation of crystals (diamonds too but good luck finding lots of them LOL).
Quarts crystals can be found in Arkansas, and in some areas these crystals are in real abundance. My mom and I visited areas where all we had to do was scoop up some dirt in our hands and we would have a few crystal shards or small crystals in our hands. With so many quarts crystals in abundance our goal was to dig up the best ones! My mom found one single crystal point larger then her fist, while I found a huge rock completely covered in crystals. I think my mom still uses that rock I found to help line the path in her garden.
Good Crystal Hunting Tips
The biggest tip I can share in finding a good spot to hunt for some wow factor crystals is actually pretty simple. This is exactly what we did, we went into a crystal shop on our way down to the city of Hot Springs and simply asked where we might be able to look and find some great crystals free. It really was as simple as that!
We tried official 'dig your own' sites that charged for entry, and usually found the crystals were already mined and so were thin on the ground so to speak. The free spots we were directed to by the shops were far and away more fun to hunt for crystals! I don't know if the shops saw me as a kid and knew that a kid would have a better time where the crystals are literally everywhere and so offered the best advice but I like to think that was it.
You can probably find official places online to visit and dig for your own crystals online and that is perfectly fine, it should give you a sense of direction as to where to visit exactly. I would just recommend that you leave lots of time for exploring the unpublicized areas and do not be afraid to ask at that local shops!
Interesting Facts about Crystals
I decided to have a look around the net to remind me of the areas we would visit for crystal digging, and basically to see what information is already out there. I actually learned a very interesting fact about the crystals you find in Arkansas.
I did not know this when I was a kid digging for crystals but it turns out that Arkansas has some of the best quality quarts crystals in the world, along side Brazil. I find it amazing to think that I was living so close to an area that is world renowned for its crystals in geological circles. If asked where to find the best quality crystals I would have guessed Brazil not Arkansas, yet I can say the crystals we found were of a quality that sells in shops for serious money! If you are a rock hound and want to go prospecting for crystals just had to Hot Springs or Mount Ida to find abundant quartz deposits around the Ouachita Mountain area.
The quarts crystals that you might find can range from clear almost completely flawless ones to ones with flaws that create colors within the crystal itself. Highly colored crystals are probably just as rare as completely flawless ones but whatever sort you find you should find something to prize and treasure!
I hope that you have enjoyed this hub and I would welcome any comments you may have. Please feel free to post any interesting facts on crystals that you know of!