Digging for Tourmaline in California

Digging for Tourmaline in California

California is known for a particular type of crisp pink Tourmaline. You can also find plenty of green and black tourmaline in the state. There are a few mines in southern California that I was curious to check out while I was down at GIA in Carlsbad taking some lab classes for my Gemologist certification.  

Some people look for new restaurants to check out when they travel. I, on the other hand, look for mines to go get dirty in. The Himalaya Tourmaline Mine, located near Santa Isabel, CA, didn't disappoint. 

There was a large pile of dirt and rock in the center with screening/sifting tables surrounding the pile. Plenty of shovels and buckets are available on site.  The cost to dig for the day is relatively inexpensive for the 5 hours you get. You keep everything you find and the location is easy to get to and right off the main road.  It's fun for kids and rockhounds alike.

You can also take a bag of high grade ore to go or have one shipped to your house so you can dig for tourmalines in the comfort of your own home (NOTE: it makes a big mess). The photo here is from my day of digging at the mine. I found quite a few tourmaline, a large smoky quartz, and some black tourmaline in quartz matrix, so my efforts were well-rewarded. It's always so satisfying to know exactly where your stones come from.

There are several mines around this area, so if you are ever in southern California, why not go for a dig!

Check out this link for more information on tourmaline. The light green tourmaline in quartz in the materials photo I found at the mine.

Here is a piece of the pink tourmaline I mined, cut, and set: Polyhedroid Agate 14k Gold Pendant.

Recent Posts
New Dendritic Agate Ring Collection The Glamorous Green of Emerald Looking for a way to celebrate Mom? Tucson Gem and Mineral Show 2022 Tips: Part 2 Tucson Gem and Mineral Show 2022 Tips: Part 1
14k gold Alfie Norville Gem and Mineral Museum almandine alternativebridal American gems amethyst andradite aquamarine Australian Opal Benitoite Bi-color sapphire Birthstone jewelry gifts black and gold Black Opal Boulder Opal bridaljewelry Buying Gemstones Buying opal jewelry Bypass ring California gemstones California pink tourmaline California state gemstone chalcedony charoite chrysoprase Colorado turquoise colors of opal Columbia-Willamette Faceter's Guild Crystal Opal demantoid Dendritic agate Denver Gem Show diamond druzy enamel engagementjewelry engagementring Ethiopian Opal faceting February birthstone fluorite garnet Gem and Mineral Museum Gems and Minerals gemstone charm jewelry Gemstone mines in America Gemstone mines open to public Gifts for mom graduation jewelry grossular Hand-cut Opal handcut gemstones Handmade sapphire jewelry Handmade turquoise jewelry hessonite Himalaya Tourmaline Mine horsetail inclusion iolite jade January Birthstone labradorite lapidary lepidolite March Birthstone Mexican Fire Opal mini stone pendant mining Mixed metals Montana sapphire mother child jewelry Mother's Day Gifts Mother's Day jewelry gifts Motherhood Navada gemstone mining Navada turquoise necklace New Mexico turquoise New Mexico Turquoise Museum New Rings Collection 2022 nontraditionalengagementrings one-of-a-kind charm pendant opal Opal Jewelry Opal Mining Oregon Opal Padparadscha Padparadscha sapphire pantone color of the year 2022 pantone very peri Parti Sapphire pendant periwinkle Play of Color Opal purple purple jasper pyrope raw diamonds rhodolite Rice Northwest Museum of Rocks and Minerals Rockhounding America Rockhounding for sapphire Rockhounding for turquoise sapphire Sapphire rough sodalite Sourcing Gemstones Sourcing sapphire Spectrum Sunstone Mine spessartine spinel summer collection summer jewelry styles sunstone Surface Matters: Grit & Gloss tanzanite The Enamelist Society tiffany stone tourmaline tsavorite Tucson Gem Show Turquoise Turquoise mining uniquering uvarovite Valentine's Day jewelry gifts very peri very peri jewelry White Opal