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Where to Find Crystals and Minerals in Your Home Town?

Updated: Jun 3, 2023

Crystal hunting is gaining popularity and we know where to look.

[Updated 31st May, 2023]

If you fancy your hand at rockhounding, it can be difficult to know where to start. There isn’t much information out there about how you go about finding crystals of your own. Fortunately, there is The Stone Circle, and we are always happy to help.

Practicing Crystal Hunting Makes Perfect

First things are first: if you want to be a rockhound, ya gotta look at rocks. Preferrable hundreds or thousands of them. The more rocks, minerals, and crystals that you pick up, the better you will get at spying others. You won’t wake up after two days looking at gravel and suddenly know where to find emeralds, either so it’s important that you do your reading.

There are hundreds of books out there written by geologists in your local area. Search on Google for “Geology books on xxx” with xxx being your location/country. Otherwise, The Natural History Museum have an ID guide that might help. If you want to wing it like we do, there are other ways to learn about your local geology and all of them start with the internet.

Practicing rockhounding looks like this:

Step 1: Go outside and look at rocks – any rocks.

Step 2: Pick up one that interests you and bring it home.

Step 3: Search online by describing your rock and scrolling through pictures of it.

Step 4: If you can’t find it, ask a mineral ID forum, usually on Facebook.

Step 5: Repeat.

Eventually you will be able to name a few rocks in your local area. Our advice is always that you start with quartz. It will be white, either milky or clear, it might be stained yellow, orange, or red by iron, but it is the easiest to identify. Quartz will scratch glass. If your sample doesn’t scratch glass, it’s probably calcite instead.

Where to Look for Crystals in Your Town?

You don’t even have to leave the local area to find great minerals. We use stone in our day-to-day lives. We live in giant stones, decorate our gardens with them, and even wear them on our necks.

Can You Find Crystals in Gravel?

Garden gravel is one of the common places to find crystals and minerals, regardless of how unlikely it may seem. This is because gravel is taken from quarries, usually aggregate quarries, and is chiselled from the same areas which crystallisation occurs in. So check your gravel.

Can You Find Crystals in Rivers?

Rivers, burns, streams and other waterways present a fantastic learning experience for the budding rockhound. The water makes crystals a little weathered but no matter. Creeks in Australia are filled with Carnelian, dried river beds in England might contain quartz and jasper, and up in the north we get agates, mica, garnets, and more, all in our rivers.

Can You Find Crystals on the Beach?

Yes, you can, but some coastlines (like UK coastlines) are protected against the removal of material or damage to the shoreline. Our advice is that you don't remove material from the beach. You may still photograph and record these pieces for your records.

Can I Find Crystals in the Forest?

Crystal hunting in the forest can be hit or miss, it entirely depends on the local geology. Look around the bases of trees, or around upturned roots. Streams through forests might also prove fruitful.

Final Thoughts on Finding Crystals

We would always advise budding rockhounds to do more good than harm. This means clearing up rubbish you come across, leaving rocks for those that come after you, and only taking what you need. Leaving with one or two specimens is responsible, gathering buckets per trip is not.

Scottish rock hunters have a code. If you are in a well known area, you leave a piece for the next hunter to find.

Familiarise yourself with the places you should not collect from first. This includes protected or conserved areas, scientific sites, and land owned by those notoriously unfavourable to collecting. There are fewer of these in rock hunting than in gold panning provided you do not dig any holes.

Otherwise, get out there and explore! Don’t forget to check out our blog on UK rockhounding too, if you live in the area.

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