Well we sure had a lot of fun the other day. While staying near Hotsprings Arkansas we met another RVer couple that told us about crystal mining. I didn’t even know crystal mining was a thing. I happened to strike up a conversation with our neighbors at the RV park and they told us all about the blast they had the day before. The husband pulled out a sterilte tub packed full of crystals they had dug up the day before. They told us how cheap it was (about $10 each) and they told us where it was. It pays to meet your neighbors, you never know what they’ll teach you.
Anyway, since we didn’t have anything planned for the next day we jumped in the truck and drove the 30 minutes to the Ron Coleman crystal mines. They obviously have many crystals cleaned up and ready to buy if that’s what you want. But for the more adventurous types they’ll let you dig for your own.
Now you don’t get to go dig in the mines, but you can pay for a tour of them. What they let you dig in is the leftovers from the mine. So don’t expect to pull out a crystal the size of a tire, those are already gone. However, you can reasonably expect to find something the size of your thumb. I saw a few people pull out 20lb clusters. They’re out there, you just have to find them.
We did alright. Even though we didn’t know a thing about crystal mining we dove right in. With the garden tools we’d bought in the shop we picked a random patch of dirt and dug for a few hours. We weren’t having much luck until an earth mover drove out of the mine and dropped a fresh load of muddy clay. It packed full of smaller crystals, by smaller I mean less than a softball.
Laura noticed that everyone else was literally running to the truck, so I took off with them. I figured they probably knew something I didn’t. Well it turns out they did. The fresh loads are where the good stuff is. About 30 people rushed the pile and dug in. Withing two minutes I found better crystals than I had in the previous two hours.
I chatted up the people around me as we tore into the mud and they said that fresh loads are brought up Mon/Wed/Fri, but at undisclosed times. I guess they want to keep people there? Anyway, it appears that the fresh piles are what the veteran crystal hunters wait for. Sure they’ll dig up a hole while they wait. But you can be sure they’re keeping an eye on the road from the mine.
When we got back to the RV I washed off all the crystals and we actually found quite a few good clear ones. You can see them all at the end of the video. If you ever have the chance bring knee pads, sturdy gardening tools, gloves, a bucket and some water. All in all we had a blast, and we’ll definitely go crystal mining again.
We shipped most of the crystals to our brilliant and amazingly artistic friend, Caroline Ridout, who created these gorgeous pieces using some of the crystals that we found in Jessieville, Arkansas during our mining video. They are ready to ship for Christmas time. They are all individually hand crafted and one of a kind. She is also a fellow full-time RVer we met in Pensacola at our very first RV Park on our first trip! Please check out her collection at: