Gem Mining Arizona Guide: Verified Locations and Gems You Can Find

arizona agates where to find them

Arizona, also known as the Copper State boasts a wide array of stunning gemstones. In this gem mining Arizona guide, we will explore some of the best locations that you must visit on your next trip.

The Grand Canyon State is not only famous for its breathtaking landscapes, but it also has a rich geology. The state is a treasure trove for gem enthusiasts and rockhounds alike, boasting a plethora of verified gem mining locations.

From the vibrant hues of peridot to the iridescent shimmer of fire agate, Arizona has a lot to offer. However, if you are not sure where to look, you won’t have much luck with your trip to Arizona. But this guide is for you, as we will explore some of the best spots to visit in Arizona for gem mining.

How We Picked the Top Places for Gem Mining in Arizona

In order to find the best spots in Arizona for gem mining, we had to consider a lot of things. It can be tough to find the information we need to shortlist the best places. Here are a few things we took into consideration:

  • Input from local gem hunting associations and groups.
  • The safety of the mining location and the potential hazards.
  • The accessibility of the mining spot.
  • Private and public locations.

What Kind of Gems Can You Find in Arizona

Arizona is home to various gemstones because of its vast deserts and touring mountains. Here are some of the gemstones you can find in Arizona.

Rare Gemstones Found in Arizona

  • Amethyst
  • Peridot
  • Fire Agate
  • Turquoise
  • Garnet
  • Wolgenite

Common Gemstones Found in Arizona

  • Azurite
  • Quartz
  • Malachite
  • Calcite
  • Jasper
  • Chalcedony
  • Hematite
  • Obsidian
  • Fluorite
  • Pyrite
  • Agate

You can also find agates in Arizona. Also, check out sites for Petrified Wood in Colorado and our guide on the worth of gems and crystals.

Best Spots for Gem Mining in Arizona

Here are six verified gem mining locations across Arizona and the gems you can find there.

Four Peaks Amethyst Mine

Four Peaks Amethyst Mine

Located in the rugged Four Peaks Wilderness, the Four Peaks Amethyst Mine is one of the most popular gem mining destinations in Arizona. Situated approximately 40 miles northeast of Phoenix, this mine offers an unparalleled experience for those seeking the allure of amethyst crystals.

Amethyst, a variety of quartz known for its captivating purple hues, is the primary gemstone found in this area. You can also get a guided tour by professional miners.

The mine is only accessible through guided hikes, or a helicopter. However, the tour is worth the effort for the mine’s fine-quality amethyst.

Kingman Feldspar Mine

Kingman Feldspar Mine

Kingman Feldspar Mine is located in the heart of Mohave County. The site is known for its abundance of feldspar crystals. It comes in a variety of colors, including white, pink, and green, making it a sought-after gemstone for collectors and lapidaries.

The Kingman Feldspar Mine offers a unique opportunity to uncover these dazzling crystals amidst the rugged desert terrain. You can engage in surface collecting, sifting through the rocky landscape in search of feldspar specimens.

You need to pay a small fee to enter the mine. The mine is open year-round, but do check their website ahead of your visit for any changes in timing.

Peridot Mesa

Peridot Mesa

Peridot Mesa is nestled within the Gila Bend Mountains, southwest of Arizona. The place is known for its vibrant green gemstone, Peridot. It is also known as “olivine” and is a magnesium-rich mineral prized for its striking color and mystical allure.

Peridot Mesa offers a truly immersive gem mining experience, allowing visitors to prospect for peridot crystals amidst the desert landscape.

While the mesa itself is located on the San Carlos Apache Reservation, access may be restricted without proper authorization. You can take guided tours as well to explore the entire area.

Fire Agate Mine

Fire Agate Mine

For those looking for enchanting fiery hues of the iridescent agate, Fire Agate Mine is a must-visit destination in Arizona. Situated in the rugged desert terrain near Saddle Mountain, this mine is renowned for its abundance of fire agate – a captivating variety of chalcedony known for its iridescent play of colors.

You can partake in surface collecting or scour through the rocky landscape for agate with shimmering bands of red, orange, and gold. There are guided tours available as well.

The mine entry requires a small fee of $25-$50 depending on the time and activity you want to partake in.

Date Creek

Date Creek

Moving on from the mines, Date Creek is a hidden gem mining spot in Arizona. It is located in the western part of the state near a town called Wickenburg.

From agates and jaspers to quartz crystals and chrysocolla, this area offers something for every gem enthusiast. Some of the gems found in the area are:

  • Agate
  • Garnet
  • Quartz
  • Jasper
  • Quartz crystal
  • Limonite

You can explore the creek beds and surrounding terrain in search of these elusive treasures. Date Creek is characterized by rugged terrain, so make sure to come packing with all the required tools.

Round Mountain Rockhounding Area

Situated in the Tonto National Forest northeast of Phoenix, the Round Mountain Rockhounding Area is a haven for rockhounds and gem enthusiasts alike. The place has a rich history of gem mining dating back to the 1800s.

This designated rockhounding area offers abundant opportunities to discover a variety of gemstones, including agates, turquios, jaspers, and petrified wood.

You can explore the area’s trails and washes, scouring the rocky terrain for specimens of interest. You are allowed to collect up to 25 pounds of rocks and minerals per day.

Other Gem Mining Spots in Arizona

Here are some other spots in Arizona for gem mining. Keep in mind that the rules and regulations for collecting in these areas keep changing, so make sure you are informed well.

  • Congress Mine – Gold, Pyrite
  • Rich Hill – Gold Nuggets
  • Stanton mining camp – Garnet, Fluorite, Gold, Pyrite
  • Golden Gem and Vanderbilt Mines – Galena, Pyrite, Stibnite, Sphalerite
  • Mineral Park – Turquoise
  • Meadows Creek Pass – Jasper, Fire Agate, Grape Agate
  • Ward Canyon – Red Agate
  • Mulligan Peak – Purple Agate
  • Apache National Forest – Blue Agate, Carnelian

Important Tools to Have for Gem Mining in Arizona

Gem mining in Arizona requires a set of professional tools and equipment. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

  1. Shovels and Trowels: For digging into softer soil, you need a sturdy shovel or a trowel. It also helps clear away the debris on the surface.
  2. Picks and hammers: To split rocks, and extract gems, you need a pick with one pointed end, and the other flat that serves as a hammer.
  3. Buckets: As you uncover gems, you need buckets to place them. Make sure you have durable buckets for the job to make sure your gems remain undamaged.
  4. Magnifying glass: For a closer inspection of your specimen, you need a magnifying glass to reveal details that are not visible to the naked eye.
  5. Zip-lock bags: As you collect gems, you need clear plastic containers or bags to store them. It also allows you to see the gems without having to open the bag.
  6. First aid kit: Mining is a risky venture, so make sure to keep a first aid kit with you at all times so you can address accidents or injuries promptly.


These are the most recommended spots for gem mining in Arizona. From the rugged wilderness of the Four Peaks Amethyst Mine to the iridescent treasures of the Fire Agate Mine, each spot has something wonderful to offer.

Arizona’s gem mining destinations offer an unforgettable journey into the world of natural wonders. So grab your pickaxe and embark on an adventure to uncover precious gemstones in the Grand Canyon State.

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