In 2005 we were at the mine and found a huge peacock opal, about 232 cts. The mine is surrounded by wildlife and beautiful outdoor attractions. The closest hospital is Lake District Hospital in Lakeview, OR which is about 100 miles away. Due to new safety rules, visitors may no longer park vehicles near the bank while digging... ALL GUESTS must check in at the Gift Shop. You must be at the mine site by 8 AM! Fire restrictions are not in effect often, and you must bring your own firewood, as there is none available. The late Harry W. Wilson oversaw opal mine production site for many, many years. It is fresh dirt, right from the bank, knocked down by an excavator. Though Arizona was once home to the leading opal industry in the United States, today opals are more often found in Nevada, California or Mexico. Rainbow Ridge does not offer half day rates for digging fees. Digging is allowed May 15 through Oct. 15, WEATHER PERMITTING. Rainbow Ridge Opal Mine will open for the 2020 season on Friday, May 22nd. Virgin ground load materials dug the previous day are brought out and added to the tailings each morning. Many of these locations are free of charge. Trespassers on claims can be fined. You will need a bucket with a lid for each person digging. We offer a fee dig for those that want to mine their own opals. You can purchase a license online at NDOW licensing. Three years ago we had it cut, and here it is: CLICK HERE FOR MORE. Mining for opals. You want to move dirt, but not so quickly that you miss what is there. Public Gem Mines in Texas & New Mexico Both Texas and New Mexico have a nice variety of mineral specimens that can be found including fluorite, quartz, opals, barite, agates, chalcedony, and more. Mounds of mullock … This Travel Channel feature from the 1990s introduces the Royal Peacock Opal Mine. It works very well, and is requested regularly by those who have used it before. It is centrally located between the mines open to the public. The mine is situated in northwestern Nevada, towards the end of the Virgin Valley Road about 35 miles from Denio, Nevada. If you plan to visit Virgin Valley for an opal mining trip, you might want to consider camping at the Virgin Valley or CCC campground, as the locals call it. For those of you that haven't been here, we do have a lot of space. A close-up look at one of the most beautiful opals ever. We will have a dedicated restroom attendant sanitizing restrooms, showers, porta-potties, and the laundry room continuously. Many cultures have credited opal with supernatural origins and powers. Tailings offer lots of material to go through. I only know of the Opal Mines, way up to the north, but because of the weather, they don't open until the 2nd week of May. Remember, older tailings are where a potential cutter can be found. 70 were here. We do this "to order" so that virgin ground is not wasted or allowed to dry out. They are produced by our own digging, as well as materials brought out from the virgin ground loads dug the day before. All three are fee mines, open during limited times of the year for public digging. - Denio, Nevada Open in Google Maps Rainbow Ridge Opal Mine will open for the 2020 season on Friday, May 22nd. We also mine, design and sell our rough opal, gems and jewelry online and at gem shows. The mine is open daily from 8AM until 4PM for digging. Reservations are required, and must be made by phone. We will begin taking reservations on April 15th, 2020. There is good drinking water at the Virgin Valley camp and Rainbow Ridge. The camp is usually not too crowded, with the possible exception of Memorial Day Weekend, and the Fourth of July. The final day for digging will be on Sunday, September 20th. Adding New Opal Mines. We offer several ways to experience opal mining in Virgin Valley; tailings digging and virgin ground loads. The campground is located two miles in from Hwy 140, five miles before you get to Rainbow Ridge Opal Mine. Rainbow Ridge does not offer half day rates for digging fees. Your visit allows you a unique view of the only actively working underground mine in the world famous Pala Gem mining district. Full tank of fuel and enough to get back to town, Closed toe shoes (no flip flops while mining), Clothes for all conditions (warm or cold and wet), Containers for opals: buckets with lids, small containers or baggies, Swimming suit and towel (you have to hit the pond at Virgin Valley camp), Food, snacks and drinks for the duration of your stay. It appears that there are no other fee-dig opal mines in Oregon. These opals should be kept in water, cleaned and displayed as wet specimens. Would love to know if it's ever going to be open to the public again. A load, worked properly and thoroughly, will keep two adults busy all day. We are closed each Wednesday and Thursday. There are 22 km long underground tunnels and 1,5 km long section of William tunnel available to public. Virgin Ground Load fee is $700.00 for 1-2 adults. The Royal Peacock Opal Mine is located off Hwy 140 in Virgin Valley, approximately 35 miles from Denio, Nevada. We can help you match your opal to an appropriate sized dome. We have a few of our own, and yours are welcome as long as they are dog and people friendly! Focus is on underground mining activity. There are tailings from the last 50 years of digging, to tailings that are just days old. The mine claim is privately owned and was open to collecting for a fee. Tools needed are a clod tool and a small rake, available to borrow from the rock shop. Opal Butte is not the only opal mining area in Oregon. Ever wondered what it's like, hunting for opal? Additional adults may join you, if you wish, but they will need to pay the tailings fee to do so. Come find yours! 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